new-york

Adam Rolston

Wessel O'Connor Gallery

Adam Rolston’s installation Trojans, 1991, is not about The Iliad; it’s about condoms, or rather the boxes that they are shipped in. The show consisted quite simply of 1,000 cardboard containers printed by the artist with a vinyl and rubber stamp. The stamp was also presented on the wall—a sole “painting” in a sculpture show, as it were. The gallery became a theatrical venue, suggesting a warehouse with packages stacked and strewn throughout the space. The lighting was a bit dim, and the ambiance a little mysterious.

As you may have guessed, Rolston’s installation depends rather heavily on some familiar references to the art of the ’60s and ’70s. The box itself is the ur-Minimalist form, especially favored by nuts-and-bolts curmudgeon Donald. Judd. The fuzzy mise-en-scène evokes Minimalism’s vaunted theatricality, so brilliantly condemned by Michael Fried. The most pointed reference, however,

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