The Not So Cold Calculated Works of Art

Numbers by Lucas Blalock, 2011
Work from the show by Oliver Laric
METAPHASE 3 by Barbara Kasten. 1986
Guests cozy up to the Art at On Stellar Rays
Art warms the cold white walls

Logic and science are exact in its rudimentary formulas or equations that always produce the absolute answer to a problem. Arte Fuse braved a rainy storm on the Lower East Side to attend a group show called “Towards A Warm Math” at On Stellar Rays Gallery last April 22, 2012.

The show curated by Chris Wiley (who had a recent show of his own at Nicelle Beauchene) had a selection of works consisting of forms that bisect the exact hard logic of sciences, mathematics, and technology with the more cryptic language of artistic touches. Everyone marveled at the variety of works that seek to blur the idea of appropriating absolutes but burnishing it with the arcane qualities of creativity. The title of the show itself was borrowed from Lucas Blalock’s book of the same name. A friend of mine who met me at the show mentioned that the title itself is a contradiction in terms as she explained that math in general is always about the cold solutions. The warm part that surfaces is mainly the bravado of each artist to incorporate elements that subvert the basic form then softens it.

The calculated risk of works were presented by the following: Thomas Bayrle, Rosella Biscotti & Kevin van Braak, Lucas Blalock, Mel Bochner, Brody Condon, Guy de Cointet, Haris Epaminonda, Monir Sharoudy Farmanfarmaian, John Houck, Will Insley, Yayoi Kusama, Barbara Kasten, Paul Laffoley, Oliver Laric, Ionel Talpazan, Melvin Way, Stephen Vitiello, and Eugene Von Bruenchenhein.

The numbers on a silver backdrop were the straight reference to math by Lucas Blalock yet the random arrangements destroy the formal rhetoric of sequence. A trio of kneeling down figurines by Oliver Laric had splashes of color that are variables in a series but the back is sliced out like the line of division further drilled into the final answer. A geometric sculpture of triangles by Brody Condon calls to the logic of planes making forms but the treatment and bluish green color gives this a pulsing life. The other works keep a balance between the realms of what is subjective and objective.

Viewing these works gives you the sense that artists have processes that are clearly complex than algebra but a cerebral reference is unavoidable at times. Through a very calculated manner that these works transcend from being absolute perfection to an enigmatic piece that defies cold logic. That in itself should warm you up to the sum of its parts.

Towards A Warm Math / On View: April 22 – June 3, 2012

Gallery Hours: Wednesday – Saturday 11 am – 6 pm / Sunday 12 – 6 pm

On Stellar Rays.  133 Orchard Street. New York, NY 10002


article by: Oscar A. Laluyan



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