Critics’ Picks

Win Me Free, 2005.

Win Me Free, 2005.

New York

Pam Lins

1 Freeman Alley
October 26–December 4, 2005

Pam Lins's sculpture, Win Me Free, 2005, meshes perfectly with its location, a dank nook of a gallery located in a charming dead end alley: Trastevere via the Lower East Side. The diminutive dirt-and-sand floor part of the sculpture nods to Ana Mendieta and Walter De Maria, but the real draw is the live mushrooms incorporated in several other areas. Fungi crawl out of white boxes stacked against a brick wall that looks like it is growing a few spores itself. The piece, a recreation of Lins's accommodation in an artists’ colony in Upstate New York, also incorporates a small shack that rests on a bed of mushrooms. A solitary window on one of its walls offers a view inside, where four small, bright, sketchy paintings—still lifes and interiors—rest on the floor. The cozy Hansel-and-Gretel edifice is a ruse, however, since Lins's whole presentation alludes to something darker: the perishable nature of artistic inspiration, perhaps, or those occasions when its fruits are actually poisonous.