I saw an interesting show at Marianne Boesky Gallery recently: Roxy Paine, Denuded Lens. The centerpiece of the exhibition is a huge diorama depicting an airport security station, titled Checkpoint (2014), which is a fantastically interesting work, but at this point I’m going to write about a piece in the show whose subject matter hits a little closer home to my heart … a sculpted “pinball machine.” If you’ve seen our coverage at The Arts Adventurer about our trip to the Silverball Museum in Asbury Park, you’ll know that I love pinball.
At any rate, let’s check out Roxy Paine’s pinball machine, a sculpture titled Intrusion. It’s a life-size pinball machine, but rather than having pinball elements that one would expect to see, such as bumpers and flippers, it’s consisting of a surface that looks like a carved or chiseled rock formation. Scroll down below the picture for more info on this piece …
Upon doing a little research, I’ve learned that this surface is a reproduction of a 40-foot-high formation of granite that the artist found in Massachusetts and painstakingly documented with a process including 3-D scans. The artist explains, “It was actually a formation I drove by, and I became obsessed with it … it’s about seeing this entity not as a beautiful landscape, but as something to be broken into component parts and reconstructed.” He further explains, “the geologic formation represents a conception of time, deep time, the time of billions of years … that conception is collided with the briefest of moments: the time of a human playing a game with a device.” There’s something about the surface quality of the whole piece – every sculpture in this show is made out of maple wood – that really draws the eye to scan all over the piece, noting the details and precision in which everything is presented.
The show remains up through October 18th, and the Marianne Boesky Gallery is located at 509 West 24th Street in New York City. If you can make it over there, it’s definitely worth a visit.