Monday, June 10, 2013

Maria Petschnig “Petschings’" @ On Stellar Rays

The Times review mentioned Matthew Barney, so I feel justified in piling on. I think doing a female version of Barney sounds awesome, and I am a little curious about why it hasn’t been done before. The only problem in taking on Barney is he is pretty damn good, and if you don’t kill it, it just ends up being weird, which I fear is what is happening here. I love the installation of the wood paneling and the drop ceilings, and I can’t quite remember, but I am picturing wall-to-wall carpeting. The Video has some very nice moments: a woman hanging with her twin sliding down the stairs on a mattress at night, putting cucumbers on a lap, all good stuff, but, oddly, the cucumber didn’t seem particularly phallic, just felt arbitrary. It looked good, but it is hard not to wonder why these things are all happening? And the more the video goes on, things like pantyhosed feet kneading testicular-like sculptures of cloth or rooms walled off by a mattress began to feel random and again weird. And not in a good David Lynch way, but in the kind of way that t doesn’t make sense so therefore it has to be art.  I am sure there is potential for this to be awesome and weird, but it needs some kind of overarching structure that justifies the strangeness. Otherwise it just feels like someone reaching for art, in a way that feels unfinished.

Through Jun. 16th


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