Miami Art Week 2018: Radical Sculptures

Six works that shine a light on the dynamic medium

To boil down today’s definition of sculpture, one is left with the word “representation.” Some of us immediately associate the medium with three-dimensional marble or metal mobiles while others jump to abstract pieces that tackle contemporary concepts, moods or ideologies (even if the subject matter is nothingness). During Miami Art Week, we saw several pieces that captivated through the ways they appeared different and activated various types of appreciation. Whether it was a sliver of material or a clever use of structure, these six sculptures take a radical approach to the confines of the medium.

by Evan Orensten

Crosby Studios’ “The Office”

Mashing up Balenciaga’s consumer tribalism with inspiration from his early work as a clerk in a small Russian design bureau, Crosby Studios founder Harry Nuriev unveiled “The Office” during DesignMiami/. Nuriev’s furniture subverts the fashion brand’s name—or perhaps vice versa. He’s carefully carved (and embroidered in certain instances) “Balenciaga” into an office chair, an air-conditioner, a large wooden photocopier and more. Aside from the social commentary, these are beautiful design pieces, too.

by David Graver

Rebecca Ackroyd’s “Mandy”

One of the most discussed works from Art Basel, Rebecca Ackroyd‘s 2018 piece “Mandy” tended to unsettle viewers. From odd proportions to blood-like coloration on the face, there’s something uncanny here. And when considering steel rebar, chicken wire and synthetic hair factor into the plaster piece, it all gets a bit stranger. The work stretched across the Peres Projects booth.

by David Graver

Sarah Lucas’ “Exacto”

Introducing the Kurimanzutto Gallery booth, also at Art Basel, Sarah Lucas‘ “Exacto” strikes fluorescent tube lights through a red desk chair. Of course, the glow is a magnet for passing eyes, but the meaning here leaves so much room for interpretation. For many tethered to desks, this is a sculpture to consider.

by David Graver

Janaina Mello Landini’s “Ciclotrama 122 (wind)”

A close inspection of “Ciclotrama 122” (2018) reveals its beautiful, overwhelming attention to detail. Artist Janaina Mello Landini unfurls the end of a rope and uses each tiny strands to construct a root-like system stretching out on embroidery sailcloth. Simple in concept but magnificent in execution, it’s a true highlight, seen at Zipper Galeria‘s booth during Untitled Art Fair.

by David Graver

Levan Mindiashvili’s “In Search of the Miraculous”

Layer upon layer of Levan Mindiashvili’s 2018 piece “In Search of the Miraculous” unfolds with scrutiny. This work—at the same time—is and isn’t more of a two-dimensional sculpture, employing a tapestry-like chalkboard background partially covered in a plastic curtain. The text in Georgian—scrawled on the work—is grammatically incorrect, lending curiosity to the creation. It was seen at Georgian gallery ERTI‘s booth during New Art Dealers Alliance.

by David Graver

Daniel Fiorda’s “Cell phone series”

Perhaps a testament to digital addiction or the speed with which technology advances, Daniel Fiorda‘s “Cell phone series” features real phones in plaster and wood. The artist began works of this nature back in 2015 and they continue to develop today in his greater Archeology of the 20th Century object line. There’s something disturbing here, and much that demonstrates loss. Yet, it’s also simply funny. It was seen at Lelia Mordoch Gallery during Scope Art Show.