Objects May Be Closer Than They Appear

by Art Fag City on January 30, 2006 Events

A gallery that promotes an exhibition with photographs that do not accurately represent the work being shown could be accused of using advertising techniques that are deliberately misleading. Last week I received a press release from a gallery that has done just this. Gallery Boreas sent us a write-up and link to their website announcement that uses the image below as Taylor and Miller Architects’ primary promotional photo.

This photo looks like a giant installation space with an amorpheus silver form looming over head. There isn’t any way to know that the image is in fact, sideways, and a detail of the space in between the wall and the object. Well, that is, unless you some how figured out the connection between two of the photographs displayed on different pages of their website. I have put together a side by side comparison for the sake of convenience.

When seen like this, it is, of course, painfully obvious that the photograph on the left is not oriented properly. But, since there was no cataloguing information accompanying the photograph, or full installation shots on the site at that time*, there was no way to know that the installation was going to look like the photo I took below.

Since it’s hard to imagine a more ill conceived collaboration than the one between Taylor and Miller Architects and paper artist Eric Drury, it perhaps isn’t much of a surprise that the gallery has chosen to fill my inbox with details of these works. Clearly, the influence of Thomas Hirschhorn is a little like that of Hitler; he didn’t really kill a lot people directly, but he inspired a lot of bad things in his name.

And so the result is a gallery filled with a crawling metal sculpture that fails to consider the size of the space or how it functions, and a number of paper snowflakes inspired by Manuel Baez that appear to been made without having seen the metal sculpture or even the attempt to address what would obviously be a problematic relationship between delicate and solid materials. While the argument can be made that because construction methods are becoming more standardized all the time, introducing potential architects to new techniques of construction may not be a bad idea, (as the work of Baez demonstrates), these concepts are lost in amateurish attempts to create forms that fail in the execution.

If these problems weren’t enough, Sunday I received another attachment from this gallery with jpgs of the opening reception and a photograph of bad-boy snowflake artist Eric Drury.

I swear to God, this picture is going to get the guy beat up.

*Since Friday the site has been updated with shots from the opening reception which come closer to full installation shots.

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