Carlos Reyes and Jo-ey Tang

GALERIE JOSEPH TANG
1 rue Charles-François Dupuis, Building B, 2nd Floor
October 20, 2016–December 10, 2016

View of “Carlos Reyes and Jo-ey Tang: Black door code 31A5 à gauche puis 2ème étage tout droit à gauche (Black door code 31A5, then left, 2nd floor, then straight, then on the left),” 2016.

“Black door code 31A5 à gauche puis 2ème étage tout droit à gauche” (Black door code 31A5, then left, 2nd floor, then straight, then on the left), the trailing title of this otherwise lissome little show, plots out the path a visitor must now take to reach the gallery after a recent renovation relocated the building’s entrance. Carlos Reyes also lifted these directions to title each member of a quartet of blown-glass objects (all works cited, 2016), slender, stemlike sculptures that enact a shift in their unconventional negotiation of the space. Two drip vertically down toward the floor, while another pair is suspended horizontally, perpendicular to (or even penetrating) the windowpanes. The effect is as if rays of light were somehow caught and corralled into thick skins of sandblasted glass, creating candy-corn striations of the marmalade hue concentrated at each tip.

Formally countering these sleek missiles is the squat black speaker stationed in the back of the room, where it broadcasts Jo-ey Tang’s crowd-sourced mash-up of sound tracks from the closing credits of over fifty films, ranging from Jean Genet’s Un chant d’amour (A Song of Love, 1950) to Richard Curtis’s 2003 schmaltz fest, Love Actually. Originally commissioned for “More Than Lovers, More Than Friends,” a show curated by Tang this past summer, in its new setting, the sound piece quickens the pulse of the room, skewing Reyes’s sculptures not so much as objects but as invaders, glistening party crashers who have flagrantly disregarded their own instructions for navigating the space. The strongest chord, however, may be the one struck by Tang’s guitar strings, which knots together the strings of the artist’s late father’s guitar into a kind of collapsed mobile. The piece hangs directly in front of the door, so that even visitors who followed the exhibition’s eponymous directions find themselves taken aback.

Kate Sutton