Critics’ Picks

View of “Kabarett Keif.” Foreground: Kabarett Keif and Untitled, both 2007. On wall: Untitled, 2006.

View of “Kabarett Keif.” Foreground: Kabarett Keif and Untitled, both 2007. On wall: Untitled, 2006.

Paris

David Noonan

Galerie Art: Concept
4, passage Sainte-Avoye entrance 8, rue Rambuteau
January 26–March 8, 2008

Australian artist David Noonan has covered the gallery’s slick concrete floors with burlap mats (a natural weave in the front room and a black version in the back) to create a complete—while at the same time rough and unfinished—atmosphere for this exhibition. Three costumed sentinels, Noonan’s sculptures Kabarett Keif and Untitled, both 2007, stand guard in the front room. The slightly larger-than-life-size figures are silk-screened onto linen that is then mounted on wooden frameworks, and they loom mysteriously, detached from their signifying milieu. Culled from midcentury European textbooks, they rely on the impact of the unknown and the unexpected. Likewise layering found images and raw materials, Noonan’s black-and-white photographic collages and silk screens on linen possess textures that grant them a sculptural dimension. In Paris March, 2008, a young woman stares out from the clamor of an unidentified protest. Pasting the woman’s cloak and hat onto the surface as a second layer of printed burlap, Noonan focuses our attention on her and adds tangible volume to the composition while interrupting the authenticity of the “original” imagery. In a group of new, untitled photo collages, Noonan furthers this doubling effect, subtly splicing and duplicating figures in each of the photographs in a gesture that formally mimics the fate of an image lost and found.