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Martin Kersels’s oversized assemblage of found and fabricated objects, on view in the Whitney’s lobby gallery, is both a sculpture and a performance space, which he and other artists, musicians, choreographers, and directors will use throughout the Biennial. Its five constituent objects can be arranged by the performers as individual units or used together as a single, mutable stage. When not in use, a turntable plays the silent groove from the end of a record to suggest the presence of an absent performer.
While Kersels’s sculptures have long incorporated action or performance, this project suggests a specific parallel between making art and making a pop music album. Each section of the stage is titled as a different “song,” and, in the way that an album is composed of “singles,” each functions as an individual work as well as a part of a larger whole. By serving as a vehicle for performance, the objects also take on a time-based quality, one inherent in music but not often associated with sculpture.
Review: Martin Kersels
—Artforum (April 2001; note: registration required)
Art in Review; Martin Kersels, ‘Tumble Room’
—New York Times (March 2001)
Review: Martin Kersels at Deitch Projects
—Frieze (June 2001)
Art in Review; Martin Kersels
—New York Times (September 1996)
—Frieze (November 1995)