Devotion at Catinca Tabacaru Gallery

Excrescence: a projection or outgrowth.
[Merriam-Webster Dictionary]

Now this vast principal bulk, of which the things you have named resemble excrescences and ornaments: Of what do you believe this to be made?
Galileo Galilei, Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World Systems, Ptolemaic and Copernican [translation by Stillman Drake, Modern Library, 1953]

According to Hegel, the Universal can only be found in corrupted and impure forms. When we try to remove the flaws in an attempt to reach a purer Universal, what we obtain is its exact opposite.
What is the sacred, then? Isn’t it a surplus – an excess, an organic and shapeless mass – not even capable of enjoying its own wholeness without having to continuously seek a counterbalance?
That’s what this exhibition reminds me of: an excess of matter overflowing its own boundaries; the collapse of pureness.
The show curated by Will Corwin at Catinca Tabacaru Gallery pursues the sacred, and not the ideal of sacred.
Surprisingly, we realize that, in order to reach the sacred, what we really need is to draw from our own visceral and vile human condition.

 

Escrescenza: quanto cresce e sporge sopra una superficie piana.
[Vocabolario Treccani]

E questa principale e vasta mole, della quale le nominate cose son quasi escrescenze ed ornamenti, di che materia credete che sia composta?
Galileo Galilei, Dialogo sopra i due massimi sistemi del mondo tolemaico e copernicano [Booklassic, 2015]

L’Universale secondo Hegel si trova solo in forme corrotte e impure. Nel momento in cui cerchiamo di eliminare da esso i difetti per arrivare a un Universale più puro, ciò che otteniamo è l’esatto opposto.
Cosa è quindi il sacro? Non è forse un avanzo, qualcosa di troppo, un ammasso organico e informe che non riesce neanche a godere della propria pienezza e cerca continuamente un proprio contraltare?
Ecco. La mostra che ho visto mi ricorda questo. L’eccesso della materia che deborda dal proprio confine, un collasso della purezza. La mostra curata da Will Corwin alla Catinca Tabacaru Gallery insegue il sacro e non l’idea di sacro, ed è sorprendente come, per arrivare a esso, ci si debba appropriare della viscerale e nauseabonda condizione umana.

 

DEVOTION: Mike Ballou, Joe Brittain, William Corwin, Serra Victoria Bothwell Fels, Elizabeth Ferry, Rico Gatson, Elisabeth Kley, Rachel Monosov, Roxy Paine, Joyce Pensato, Katie Bond Pretti, Carin Riley, Paul Anthony Smith, Justin Orvis Steimer, Gail Stoicheff, and Sophia Wallace. Co-Curated by William Corwin at Catinca Tabacaru Gallery, New York. Through January 17, 2016.

 

Roxy Paine, Rachel Monosov, William Corwin, Catinca Tabacaru Gallery

Exhibition view of “Devotion” at Catinca Tabacaru Gallery
Upper shelf: Rachel Monosov; William Corwin
Lower shelf: Roxy Paine; 18th century icon from Romania; Rachel Monosov

Sophia Wallace, Catinca Tabacaru Gallery

Exhibition view of “Devotion” at Catinca Tabacaru Gallery
Sophia Wallace, Untitled (She Who Is), 2015

Elizabeth Ferry, Carin Riley, Gail Stoicheff, Justin Orvis Steimer, Paul Anthony Smith, Katie Bond Pretti, Catinca Tabacaru Gallery

Exhibition view of “Devotion” at Catinca Tabacaru Gallery
On the wall (left to right): Carin Riley; Gail Stoicheff; Justin Orvis Steimer; Paul Anthony Smith; Katie Bond Pretti
Sculptures (left to right): Rico Gatson; Elizabeth Ferry; Roxy Paine

Mike Ballou, Rico Gatson, Serra Victoria Bothwell Fels, Catinca Tabacaru Gallery

Exhibition view of “Devotion” at Catinca Tabacaru Gallery
Throne by Rico Gatson; rug by Mike Ballou; wood site-specific installation by Serra Victoria Bothwell Fels

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by Arianna Carossa
in Focus on the East Coast

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