Los Angeles

Claire Falkenstein

Esther-Robles Gallery

Hovering, dangling, flickering or just lying there, Claire Falkenstein’s linear sculpture is decorative in the best sense of the word. As synthetic works inspired by the poetry of matter in motion, they achieve success by implying the structural excitement of energy. They fail when their armatures are weighed down with stones and melted glass globs. Like dressing a skeleton in long underwear, encrusting only encumbers and masks this kind of sculpture. The work which is farthest from Falkenstein’s best is “Sacre Coeur” an ugly and literal concoction of red and blue glass melted and dripping from a heart-shaped tangle of metal surrounded by gyrating circles monotonously familiar as atomic symbology. But fortunately the vulgarity of that object is more than offset by the elegance and rhythmic intricacies of her screens in expansion, the jazzy humor of “Interlocking Neon” and the handsome restraint of eleven gravures which could be metopes for a temple to Heraclitus. These gravures go beyond the diagrams of mitosis which seem to stymie so many contemporary sculptors of organic flux, by creating an intimate beauty within forms that split and congeal.

Rosalind G. Wholden