Aaron Curry: "Two Sheets Thick" - Art Ltd (September 2010)
Los Angeles sculptor Aaron Curry's solo exhibition "Two Sheets Thick" wages a visual tug-of-war inside David Kordansky's gallery space. Anthropomorphic three-dimensional neon powder-coated aluminum sculptures cut out like misshapen jigsaw puzzle pieces seem flattened thanks to their proximity to crudely rendered cardboard collages of silkscreen and spray paint. The leaning elements, as in 2+1, reinforce a surface paper quality that is fragile and "two sheets thick," but serve as half creations that are never fully realized. While the exhibition is a Technicolor feast for the eyes, Curry covered the entire gallery with custom panels of water rivulets rendered on a drawing tablet, in his work titled Tonky Star (Points of Cosmogenesis). The monotonous black and gray silkscreen backdrop of impenetrable water drops swallows the surrounding collages and sculptures. While the sculptures possess a fantastical whimsy, they begin to feel more like plop art, seeming obtrusive and weighted to the floor. The wallpaper is so deadpan that it signals a clash between art objects employed digitally and those that are sculpted and manipulated by hand. The impenetrable water drops represent the viewer's struggle to connect to objects that seem tangible but are actually concealed behind Curry's cloak of trickery.
Several sculptures are displayed on matching metal carts called "monads," a term used by ancient philosophers to denote a unit, or more specifically, an indivisible, impenetrable unit of substance. While the carts serve almost as a pedestal, which bear the artist's signature in all its bubbled and welded glory, the sculptures deter the viewer from using them as a prism through which to view the surrounding the art objects. The negative space in Mammut, for example, begs for the viewer to use it in such a manner or to walk through it as a portal; but while the sculpture is large in scale it is small in the perspective it invites. "Two Sheets Thick" radically enlivens the gallery space with a glut of stimuli, however one leaves the exhibition with a resolute emptiness. In many ways the show is best characterized by Untitled, an unassuming collage of white hash marks on black paper, held down by a strip of brown tape. It's as if Curry reveals his presence to us momentarily, keeping a running inventory of those who have visited his show.
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