los-angeles

Elyn Zimmerman

Broxton Gallery

A relative newcomer to the exigent form, Elyn Zimmerman constructs perceptual installations with a dry, pedagogic flavor. In her current room-size work, it is evident that she has learned some tricks of the trade from those installation-makers who traffic in illusory optical effects, altering the viewer’s experience of a space by cheating his eye. But unlike her predecessors, Zimmerman is a skeptic; she prefers anatomizing the mechanism of spatial illusions to indulging in their metaphysics. By contrast, many recent successful West Coast works in the perceptual genre—I think of Robert Irwin’s scrim piece over a year ago in this same space (though it was then the Mizuno Gallery), of Barbara Munger’s giant black wall with its tiny white cross at LAICA, and of Jim Turrell’s splendidly vaporous room last November at ARCO—expected viewer credulity and required a high degree of sensuous

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