Friday, July 27, 2007

Kelly Johner, Against the Grain, FAB Gallery, July 24 - August 18, 2007

Image: "Chinganna I, II, and III" courtesy of the artist

When keeping the natural curves of the trunks, Kelly Johner disturbs the form of her sculptures. Disturb in the sense of line and aesthetic, but also in the sense that it problematizes the cold hardness of her sculpture's steel cousins. The wood grains and trunk shapes carry too much life, appearing trapped and stacked against each and so naturally melded into this new shape. As trees themselves are almost perfect structures, and where steel has none, to experience a wooden sculpture of abstract and awkward proportions was unsettling.
However, a piece like "Shoulder In", which keeps the lines straight and clean and doesn't reveal the material's formal qualities, certain carried a great presence inside the gallery. As an exercise in exploring form, as displayed with the entry way's "Chinganna I, II, III" sculptures (identifical miniature figures varying from beeswax, wood, and cement) Johner's pieces reconsiders the material matter as the central identity to a piece of art.

No comments: