Artists Space

Facades, Landscapes, Interiors

May 29 – July 17, 1982

One result of the current fashionability of painting has been a conspicuous absence of critical attention to new sculpture. Facades, Landscapes, Interiors was organized to address this lack of consideration and exposure. Works in the exhibition extend the context of sculpture to installations and set designs. The work included in Facades, Landscapes, Interiors invokes an architecture which has exchanged function for playful and witty artifice. Facades, Landscapes, Interiors is a group exhibition with Andrea Evans, Gilles Jean Giuntini, Brad Melamed, Aric Obrosey, Tony Oursler, Maggie Saliske and Gail Swithenbank.

Andrea Evans, Brad Melamed and Aric Obrosey have collaborated on an installation entitled Stairway to Suburbia consisting of a staircase, wallpaper and drawings. The staircase is a symbol of upward mobility and the limits of that mobility. The wallpaper is typical of middle class taste. The drawings schematize these banalities and reflect the moods and views of daily life. Stairway to Suburbia presents a middle class dream fashioned after a conventional standard of life.

In Gilles Jean Giuntini's sculpture, the domesticity of recognizable objects: ships, bowls, tables and chairs, is thwarted by a radical shift in scale and hierarchy, questioning each object's simple identity and meaning. Giuntini's meticulous craftsmanship, and the object's emphatic placement on a table or in the center of a lead field, reveals an element of absurdity and exaggeration.

Tony Oursler, a video artist, will be exhibiting the sets he has constructed for his videotapes. The sets are expressionistic and convey a particular drama that stands independently of their use in his videotapes. Oursler's painted interiors and landscapes incorporate eccentric cultural curiosities: digital clocks, plastic puppets and tiny fixtures. These fantastic scenes fashion popular myths into social fairy tales. Oursler's sets are colorful, bizzare and above all, funny.

Maggie Saliske's painted wall reliefs and free standing wood sculptures incorporate elements of both abstraction and representation. Saliske's pieces resemble sets, furniture and architectural models. This pretense of function gently caracatures "serious" constructions based on rational theorems. Saliske uses forms which echo a broad range of art historical styles: medieval, Renaissance and constructivist.

Gail Swithenbank builds miniature houses and similar architectural structures in clay and wood. These dwarfed houses are nestled into the room's moudlings and windowsills, resembling Pueblo cliff dwellings. The work wraps the real exhibition space and adds a element of surprise to the periphery of the room.

Evans and Melamed have shown their work at the Studio Museum in Harlem and at Fashion Moda in the Bronx. Aric Obrosey has exhibited his work at the Hunterdon Art Center in New Jersey, at Focus Gallery in Michigan, and at the City Gallery in New York City.

Gilles Jean Giuntini has exhibited his work at Real Art Ways in Hartford, Conn. and at the Tyler School of Art in Philadelphia, Pa.

Tony Oursler has shown his videotapes at the San Francisco Art Institute and at LACE in California, at the Kitchen, Anthology Film Archives, P.S. 1, and Castelli Graphics in New York City, at Hallwalls in Buffalo, as well as in Paris, Berlin and Japan.

Maggie Saliske is a sculptor who has shown her work at the Hess Gallery in Boston, Mass. and at 55 Mercer Street Gallery in New York City.

Gail Swithenbank has exhibited her sculpture at Mercer Union in Toronto and at the Sculpture Center, P.S. 122 and 55 Mercer Street Gallery in New York City.

Contact sheet of installation views of the exhibition.
Facades, Landscapes, Interiors. Installation view, Artists Space, 1982. [Contact sheet of installation views of the exhibition.]

Artists Space's regular exhibition program is sponsored by the New York State Council on the Arts, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Jerome Foundation, the Robert Sterling Clark Foundation, the Samuel Rubin Foundation and the Walter Foundation. Corporate sponsors are: American Can Company, The Art Dealers Association, AT&T Long Lines, Consolidated Edison, Exxon Corporation, I.M. Pei & Partners, Philip Morris, Inc. and Warner Communications, Inc.