• Nancy Rubins

    Burnett Miller Gallery

    Table and Airplane Parts, 1990, was the title of the first of a trio of pieces, each occupying its own room, that comprised Nancy Rubins’ recent show. Installed in the gallery’s large, concrete, bunkerlike front room, the work consisted of a gigantic tumble of crumpled airplane parts: wings, doors, ducts, metal sinks, turbines, etc., bound together with lengths of wire. Bunches of severed cables dangled from the wreckage like bouquets of snakes. (Dirt still clung to some of the plane fragments.) At one end of the piece, plane parts seemed to rest on or stem from an unpainted wooden table, and

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  • Lynn Aldrich

    Sue Spaid Fine Art

    Ever since Reaganomics began to take its toll on the vestiges of the middle class, the American dream just hasn’t been the same. The multimedia installations in Lynn Aldrich’s recent show, entitled “Running Out,” collectively interrogate the nefarious underside of late-capitalist ideologies of domesticity.

    Entering this complex, tightly packed exhibition, the visitor is overwhelmed by the pervasive smell of air-freshener—an assaultive “spice” odor that insinuates itself into one’s consciousness. Placed ceremoniously on a faux-marble-topped pedestal, a huge wedge of Renuzit cast in the extended

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  • Gerhard Merz

    Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA)

    Gerhard Merz has built a reputation in recent years with a series of site-specific installations that attempt to realize the utopian Modernist dream of a formalism that fuses art and architecture in a seamless, nonutilitarian whole. While this seems at first glance to be a hopelessly nostalgic yearning for the “total” art epitomized by the art-for-art’s-sake movements of the early 20th century, Merz introduces enough contradictory elements to create a visually provocative, if theoretically futile work.

    Archipittura, 1992, Merz’s recent installation at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, was a

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