ART: Diving into its pool @ PULSE
By Frank Exposito
I suppose I wasn’t the only one envisioning myself on a beach this past weekend. In our preview for the seventh edition of the PULSE Contemporary Art Fair, which went on from May 3rd through the 6th, we harped about the weather anomalies occurring in New York that have had their disorienting effect on even the savviest of dressers. I myself, though admittedly not the most adaptive, still thought a corduroy blazer would do for the first gloomy day at PULSE. But, when I came to find the anomalies now inside, I was forced to reconsider my sartorial choices, abandoning restraint in a heat that emanated from the vibrancy of the work put on display, visible from far away in the spacious and inviting layout of PULSE’s interior at the Metropolitan Pavilion. Thankfully, they were also serving plenty of water.
At first, in the periphery as one walked in, Marco Breuer’s hydrating turquoise introduced itself from a corner, like a mirage suddenly appearing between desert dunes. We’ve already mentioned Melanie Willhide’s Untitled pool from 2011 that sat close by in Von Lintel’s space, its pulsing red splicing summer bodies. But, the ghost in the machine that inspired the work post computer theft and data retrieval shares more than just a saturated commonality with Breuer’s. The same mystery of process is present in his chlorinated pools that come instead in their usual Caribbean color, crisp and clear in Untitled (C-1178) of 2012. Made completely in the dark and then revealed whole in the light, Breuer carves blindly into photographic paper with the heated coils of an electric frying pan to make these pieces, cooking up an image as it were with the lights off. He innovatively conducts photography as drawing, burning the fully formed medium in vindictive purging. Instead of anticipated destruction, an artwork is born out of transitory sublimation—darkness making bright light, handwork evaporating in its luminosity like the steam rising from a pot of boiling water.
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