Rita McBride: Double to Watch, Triple to Help
Sep 9 – Oct 25, 2006
An exhibition of new sculpture by Rita McBride will open September 9th at Alexander and Bonin.
McBride's work attends to the vernacular of architecture and design. Working in a variety of materials, her sculptures have examined the unclaimed territories of urban modernism such as parking structures, awnings, HVAC units, conduits, and cable boxes. Her interest lies in the struggle that has been at the heart of modernism since its inception: the struggle between service and served, functionalism and formalism, between the machine and the art object.
The upcoming exhibition will present a series of works that McBride calls Tools for Sculpture. Architectural templates used for drafting and drawing, for measuring the world and imagining it, are re-presented as enlarged planes of steel, bronze, glass, silver, and wood. Collectively, these “tools” form an environment evocative of a machine shop or architect’s tool rack. Metaphorically, they represent abstractions that we interpret and utilize. In a statement about these works, McBride further elucidates:
“Tools are forged from plausible lies, contrived to represent an alternate reality so convincing that we do not question their by-products. The tools we use to conjure up this world become powerful. They acquire a secret life, an ambiguous life which conceals the rabbit or the scarf that never-endingly unwinds from our shirtsleeves.”
Rita McBride lives in Spain and Germany where she is a professor at the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf. In 2004, McBride had an extensive solo exhibition at the SculptureCenter, New York. Over the last six years her work has been the subject of solo museum exhibitions in France, Germany, Holland, Austria, and Liechtenstein. Recent work will be exhibited at Annemarie Verna Galerie, Zurich from November 3rd to January 20th.
Concurrent with the exhibition will be the launch of The Ways, a series of four books that explore and decipher four different genres of popular fiction: romance (Heartways), science fiction (Futureways), crime (Crimeways), and self-help (Myways). The Ways books are a project conceived by Rita McBride and produced in collaboration with more than fifty artists, architects, writers, journalists, curators, and critics. The series is published by Arsenal Pulp Press, the Whitney Museum of American Art, and Printed Matter. The complete special edition will be available at Printed Matter.