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Nancy Rubins
at Gagosian Gallery, Beverly Hills, California
Recommendation by Bill Lasarow


Nancy Rubins, 'Work for New Space, Stainless Steel, Aluminum, Monochrome II,' 2010, stainless steel, stainless steel wire, aluminum, 18'8' x 34' x 35'9'

Continuing through September 3, 2010

If there is no surprise in the pair of massive sculpture assemblages Nancy Rubins presents, they exude overwhelming presence together with endlessly satisfying incidents. Constructed entirely of bare steel and aluminum canoes and kayaks, they rise weightless above you, encircling like a still tornado. Frozen by wire and a single muscular, angled base, one's gaze is directed upward to discern linear elements formed by the swirling pods and wires, and negative spaces between them that shift fluidly as you move. It's not unlike being among a flock of large birds just taking flight. Rarely have objects of this weight and scale conveyed such lightness.

It must be noted that with time our instinctive trust in the stability of Rubins' structures has fundamentally changed the way those familiar with her work approach it. The initial charge of being at the physical mercy of such a mass that might fatally collapse upon you at any moment has long since given way to a trustful assumption in their stability. It is important and admirable that the aesthetic qualities here push decisively beyond this; it shows that Rubins has gotten beyond the spectacle.

Gagosian Gallery

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