Drawing together a body of new photographs, ceramics and sculpture from the past year of artist Richard Deacon’s ever-evolving studio practice, the current solo show at Marian Goodman Gallery, House & Garden, explores relationships between materials and processes, representing innovations in Deacon’s thinking about sculpture, and the relationships of image to surface, object making to the pictorial, and sculpture to the plinth, all notions that have been present in his work and are at the nexus of his steadfast interest in a multiplicity of modes of production.
Deacon’s interest in the structural/critical capacities of the sculptural object are well documented, and his interest in the history of sculpture as a way to arrive at new modes of movement and construction in space are welcomed with open arms in this new show. Pairing two new series of works, “Flat” and”Home & Away,” his ceramic pieces in Marian Goodman’s North Gallery are placed on table structures, allowing both the table and its surface to function as sites of attention and legibility, and presenting their content in a particularly strong interrelationship with the object as it exists in space. The table is both object and vessel, carrying meaning within its construction in a manner that never ignores the larger compositional system.
More broadly, House & Garden suggests Deacon’s relationship to landscape through sculpture and photography, which continues into the adjacent gallery where wall-mounted photographs are shown with ceramic objects, and then into the South Gallery where they are shown in tandem with three larger sculptures in stainless steel and wood, Wave, Mire and Under the Weather. Invested in the act of movement and energy as much as they are in the idea of the sculpture “as image,” these pieces are moments suspended in space, allowing the viewer to examine and experience the object, and its unfolding narratives, as Deacon has rendered them.
The show also features a series of Deacon’s ceramics, a practice that he has sustained over the past twenty years. Using interrelations of color and form, surface and its manipulation, the works on view from his often overlooked body of work present a sense of deconstructed form, one that almost recasts his pieces in conversations of scale and process. Much like his larger works, Deacon allows an experience of the object as it realizes itself, both for the artist, and the viewer.
His work is on view through February 16th.
— D. Creahan
Richard Deacon: House & Garden [Marian Goodman]