Go See – New York: Ivan Navarro at Paul Kasmin through April 2nd, 2011

Ivan Navarro - Twin Towers - Paul Kasmin
Ivan Navarro Twin Towers (2011) and Desert (Columbia Center) (2011). Via Paul Kasmin Gallery

Chilean-born artist Ivan Navarro‘s “Heaven or Las Vegas” will be on view at Paul Kasmin Gallery through April 2nd, 2011. The exhibition directly follows Navarro’s recent Armory showcase, where his aptly titled work, “The Armory Fence,” was shown through Paul Kasmin. Navarro is currently based in Brooklyn, and “Heaven or Las Vegas” is his first solo exhibition at Paul Kasmin Gallery.

Ivan Navarro - Armory Fence - Paul Kasmin
Ivan Navarro, Armory Fence (2011) site specific installation at the 2011 New York Armory Show. Via L. Streeter, Art Observed

more images and story after the jump…

Ivan Navarro - Shelter - Paul Kasmin
Ivan Navarro, Shelter (2011). Via Paul Kasmin Gallery

Navarro selected twelve internationally recognizable skyscrapers to model his florescent light sculptures, thusly alluding to the global manifestation of Western ambition and expansion. Inspirations for the walled light sculptures include the Jumeriah Emirates Towers in Dubai, the Center in Hong Kong, and the Flatiron Building in New York.


Ivan Navarro, Surrender (Flatiron) (2011). Via Paul Kasmin Gallery

Each work additionally incorporates words or phrases to enhance metaphorical and aesthetic dimensions of architectural simulation. In addition to the use of mirroring and lighting techniques, the words substantiate the illusion of an elevation of over 1,000 feet high.

Ivan Navarro - Homeless Lamp, the Juice Sucker - Paul Kasmin
Ivan Navarro, Homeless Lamp, the Juice Sucker (2005). Via The Saatchi Gallery

In this exhibition, Navarro incorporates his repeated platform of political discontent, utilizing the tools of an everyday society to allude to underlying danger and violence. At Paul Kasmin, the macabre merits of previously showcased work have literally taken on a new dimension, with the illusion of three-dimensionality suggesting that even ideological structure is illusory.

Ivan Navarro - Pink Electric Chair - Paul Kasmin
Ivan Navarro, Pink Electric Chair (2006). Via Phillips de Pury

Navarro has used florescent lights in previous works, which arguably “illuminate”  symbolic contradictions. However, his Armory piece prior to the current Kasmin exhibition used structure rather than light to represent entrapment. The fence does not flash or glow, but its confining and linear structure sends a silent message. The work is a chronological precursor to the current exhibition at Paul Kasmin, and also introduces a new element of structural integrity to the traditional themes Ivan Navarro has used in the past.

Related Links
Press Release [Paul Kasmin Gallery]
Artist’s Bio [The Saatchi Gallery]
AO On Site photoset/news summary – New York: Armory Show – The Day One Preview, March 2nd, 2011 [Art Observed]

A. Bregman

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