New York

Steve Keister

Blum-Helman Gallery

From Georges de la Tour's incandescent figures to Dan Flavin's burlesques, artists have attended to the conundrum of emanating light. Steve Keister, too—witness the way he dims his installation space by blinkering the spots and training them exclusively on the painted interiors of his sculptures. The result is a seemingly sourceless beaming of light; the works appear to glow from within, but there is no trace of a controlling mechanism inside, Glamorama, for example, is a mannequin filled with light that enters through a hole in the top of the head which one has to stand on tiptoe to see. Borrowed light, like the moon's, traditionally bathes its receiver in sterility, but this Giorgio de Chirico–derived bust also enacts a tableau of inspiration: open your mind and let clarity flow in. Much is inorganic (the rusted iron base) and mutant (the featureless, amputated model) but the light,

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