Los Angeles

Jim Isermann

Richard Kuhlenschmidt Gallery

As in Jim Isermann’s previous exhibitions of wall panels, lamps, clocks, and freestanding furniture, the domestic-minded sculpture here is a homage to industrial folk objects of the ’50s and ’60s. Isermann allies himself most closely with the vernacular offshoots of high Modernist design—work more eccentrically colored, more wildly curvilinear than that of Marcel Breuer, Eero Saarinen, Charles and Ray Eames, and others, upon which it performs variations. Isermann assumes this posture not to mimic vernacular craftsmen but to use their transformations of earlier designs as a stimulus for a fresh alignment of “high” and “low” art. In his 1982 solo show, “Motel Modern,” Isermann succeeded in this aim, lifting the biomorphic elements of Modernist painting out of the canvas, as it were, and incorporating them in ridged and pegboard furniture for the motel suite. The site was the Inn of Tomorrow,

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