Critics’ Picks

View of “Tauba Auerbach and Charlotte Posenenske,” 2015.

View of “Tauba Auerbach and Charlotte Posenenske,” 2015.


Tauba Auerbach and Charlotte Posenenske

Via dei Mille, 6
April 23–September 19, 2015

Entering into a dialogue both personal and creative, works by Tauba Auerbach and Charlotte Posenenske together investigate the notion of the threshold. Posenenske was recognized as an artist who sought out collaborative situations, and the actual configurations of the models that make up her “Series D Vierkantrohre” and “Series DW Vierkantrohre” (both 1967/2015) are sometimes entrusted to curators, collectors, or, as in the current case, to another artist choosing to interact with them. Embracing the alliance with Posenenske, Auerbach here reinstalled the industrial cardboard and aluminum structures with deference to the contours of the Roman cityscape that act as an inescapable frame. Their collaboration almost becomes a partnership in a game of bridge, with Posenenske as dummy letting Auerbach play her cards.

A circular and rotating movement imbues both Posenenske’s sculptures and Auerbach’s densely plotted and interwoven canvases (Transom/Trans Ray I, Bitmap Gradient Ray III, and Fret/Slice I, all 2015)—mostly white monochromes with layered geometries that create vertiginous shifts in forms and colors. The works are sensitive to their location, blending in with the crumbling floor and ceiling decorations in remembrance of past splendors. Repetition and modularity are common denominators, whether in the form of an industrial-democratic spirit in Posenenske’s case or a mantric reiteration in the work of Auerbach, whose surfaces feature diamond shapes, Greek fret designs, and optical motifs. What first appear to be two-dimensional works in fact preserve voluminous and sculptural formal structures in their rendering and methodology. The interplay between symmetry and asymmetry, fundamental to Auerbach’s aesthetic research, here grows from the interweavings and motifs that are interrupted then taken up again, like a binary language awaiting decoding.

Translated from Italian by Marguerite Shore.