Last week, I wandered around an area of New York which is seemingly inhabited by only New York University. I occasionally find myself sashaying through the park, avoiding the people mumbling their marijuana offerings, enjoying the fake Arc De Triomphe situated in the park, along with the fountain at the center, often crammed with little kids turning it into their makeshift swimming pool, or on my way to grab some pizza with friends at Otto. Great pizza by the way. Anyhow, on this particular day, I was walking and texting with my friend Tathiana, a public relations swami I like to call her, and she mentioned the Helmut Lang exhibition, which I conveniently happened to be walking towards.
So I decided to check it out. I have always been a big admirer of Helmut Lang, and his simple clothing, cut in the most divine way. I remember, back during my intern days, staring longingly at an asymmetrical white dress, wondering when I would be able to adorn myself in the heavenly swathes of fabric.
An enlightening exhibit for those of us who only thought Helmut Lang a clothing designer – he is in fact a sculptor as well. Situated on the parlor floor of a townhouse in Washington Square, the locale most definitely contributed to the eccentric nature of the exhibit. The sculptures showcased was a series of “enigmatic recent works from the artist’s ongoing explorations into the liminal realm between abstraction and figuration.”
The event was co-curated by Mark Fletcher and Neville Wakefield, and displayed 20+ never before seen sculptures by Lang. Lang works with the concepts of form, volume, light, and the material history of objects, using rubber, foam, plaster, sheepskin, and tar. Very different from his previous sculptural endeavor, titled “Make it Hard.” The works instantly imprisoned my attention, as I walked by each piece. They are all monochromatic structures, similar to much of the clothing Lang produced. The blatantly phallic shapes of some of the sculptures kind of reprimanded me for questioning the rubber material used to create the sexually charged exhibit. There is the concept of “reassembly and renewal”, and generally, the idea of what the material was previously utilized for was not entirely expunged, by the “softened edges within the sculptures hint at both the process of erosion and transition into gallery artifact.”
Unfortunately, this exhibit completed its reign last week. But who knows what city the exhibition will tour next. Perhaps they will pop over to Sophia in London, or off to Copenhagen, the home of Muuse. Wherever it may be, you should definitely pay a visit to the sculptural toils of Helmut Lang.