Art In America

Liz Glynn

at Paula Cooper,
534 West 21st Street

Auguste Rodin willed the contents of his studio, including the right to cast his sculptures posthumously, to the French state, which has established precise guidelines for how these works should be produced and distributed to cultural institutions around the world. Liz Glynn’s “The Myth of Singularity,” a series of eight bronzes directly related to Rodin’s masterpieces, flouts these administrative efforts, identifying the sanctioned methods of reproduction not as some managerial burden, but as the starting point for new creative acts.

The bronzes on view here originated in a 2013 performance at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art for which Glynn worked with museum conservators and eight other sculptors to “collage” plaster casts taken from parts of LACMA’s Rodin works, splicing together faces and body parts and toying with different scales. The performative origin of the sculptures is evident in the traces of cloth and plaster that mark the rough surfaces of the final bronzes. Still, the blunt evidence of the actual work of sculpting does not efface the human form. One version of the great Balzac appears like a mischievous child in a bathrobe. In another piece, parts of the writer’s hulking form are merged with that of a Calais Burgher. In some ways Glynn’s projects represents a radical extension of Rodin’s own approach; historians have documented his penchant for cannibalizing and recombining elements of his own work. But whereas Rodin sought to liberate his striking figures from the literary and religious narratives that had previously determined the content of sculpture, Glynn inscribes these works within a narrative of their own making, so that the encounter with the bronzes is inseparable from the process of their production. —William S. Smith

 

Pictured: View of Liz Glynn's exhibition, 2017, at Paula Cooper, New York. Photo Steven Probert.

More from the Lookout

Florine Stettheimer

at the Jewish Museum,
through Sept. 24
1109 5th Avenue

“Body, Self, Society: Chinese Performance Photography of the 1990s”

at the Walther Collection Project Space,
through Aug. 19
526 West 26th Street, Suite 718

Roni Horn

at Hauser & Wirth,
through Jul. 29
548 West 22nd Street

Closing

Walead Beshty

at Petzel Gallery,
through Jun. 27
456 West 18th Street

Henri Cartier-Bresson

at the Rubin Museum of Art,
through Sept. 4
150 West 17th Street

Lygia Pape

at the Met Breuer,
through Jul. 23
945 Madison Avenue

Georgia O’Keeffe

at Brooklyn Museum,
through Jul. 23
200 Eastern Parkway

“Self-Interned, 1942: Noguchi in Poston War Relocation Center”

at the Isamu Noguchi Museum,
through Jan. 7
9-01 33rd Road, Long Island City

Submit your e-mail to receive insider information from the art world every week.