Last Supper, Urs Fischer (Through May 8, 2014)
Gagosian, Park & 75th
What’s on view: A bronze-cast version of piles of unfired clay in a raw, pinchpot version of “the last supper.” The composition comes from Urs Fischer’s recent Los Angeles show YES, which was made with the help of 1,500 volunteers.
Whitney: Looks like Gagosian’s trying to diversify. In addition to their Delancey Street pop-up, their new storefront space has no indication that it’s Gagosian Gallery, just a simple “Park & 75” sign resembling that of a Polish deli. But they’re not a Polish deli. You’ll get a stark reminder of this just a few blocks west, where they’re straight-up showing jewelry (Victoire de Castellane) at 980 Madison Ave.
Corinna: Urs Fischer chose to make his own version of “The Last Supper.” Star Wars did it. Dogs playing poker did it. Lego did it, too. Now it’s Urs’s turn. And he titled his “last supper,” all lower-case.
Are we all really in need of another version of this, though? Do we wrestle with the last sup single day?
I will say that the sculpture does have some nice modeling details: You can see all sorts of thumb prints and shoe marks in the sculpture. Jesus’s hair almost looks like a mullet from the way the clay has been pushed around.
We should mention—Paddy, you and I were talking about this earlier—this new storefront Gagosian might be the friendliest of the bunch. Even the security guards were welcoming.
Paddy: I’m not sure I understand the point of making a bronze cast from clay, if all you’re going to do is patina the hell out of it so it still looks like clay. It seems like this is purely an attempt to monetize the YES exhibition. As far as I can tell, the only thing extraordinary about what’s on view here is that they managed to do so without an ounce of creativity.
Precious Objects, Victoire de Castellane (Through April 26, 2014)
Gagosian, 980 Madison Avenue
What’s on view: Gold, sapphire, emerald, ruby, and diamond jewelry by Victoire de Castellane
Whitney: It’s jewelry.
Paddy: Come on Whitney, this is an amazing show. It reminds me of the Walton Ford exhibition of wall-sized gorilla drawings at Paul Kasmin a couple years ago in that it’s equally ridiculous. The gallery is painted in jewelry box blue. There is a dressing table near the back (but not sales attendant to help). Each oversized vitrine, of which there are eight or nine houses an ornate stand for the jewelry.
And the jewelry is astonishingly ornate without any of the gestures that would either indicate self-awareness on the part of the designer or make it wearable. Take the blue necklace modeled like a snake with an emerald and flower medallion. Who is the customer for this? Whomever it is, they could choose to purchase the piece could also get the matching bracelet, which uses the same snake and flower motif, but replaces the emerald center for some sort of blue stone (it’s not named on the site).
It’s hard to name anything in this show that would be wearable—and I’m guessing this been a problem for collectors too as the show has been extended—but if I had to choose, I’d say Amanita Satana Diabolus. This is a necklace in pride colors with two irises at its base. It’s tacky as all hell, but Elton John could pull it off.