new-york

John Chamberlain

Leo Castelli Gallery uptown

Each of John Chamberlain’s six new welded auto sculptures, comprised of the front ends of car chassis, bodies and fenders, is pinned by a rod to the wall, and bears an unmistakable resemblance to hunters’ mounted trophies. The massive top third of each piece tapers, with tusklike planar thrusts to left and right, to the narrow lower part, whose shape, a cross between the trunk of a baby elephant and the snout of an oversized hoar, ends about 18 inches above the gallery floor.

The sculptures are about five feet in height, so one must gaze up at the outer sweeps of metal, smallish like Indian elephant ears, and stare directly into the dashboard light holes or the vortices of crushed metal in the proper place of implacable eyes. Like de Kooning’s “woman” variations, Chamberlain’s work here mixes abstract and figurative styles, but as Chamberlain hasn’t titled these pieces, a special effort of

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