New York

Curtis Mitchell

Andrea Rosen Gallery

Much recent art that poses as a critique of commodity culture instead reinforces our collective fetishization of the object world. By fabricating slick, seductive, high-gloss objects, artists with ostensibly subversive intentions play into consumerist demands so adeptly as to collapse opposition into identification. At the other extreme are found-object artists who salvage old, often decrepit items. Such work falls into an adjacent trap, appealing to those drawn to the “nostalgia” of objects with a history.

Between these two in strategy, but with an end-product entirely off the scale, are the works of Curtis Mitchell. Mitchell takes brand-new objects, including furniture and domestic items, but also sewer grates, chunks of sidewalk, and throwaways, nearly destroys them, and then sets about “repairing” them. Mitchell’s hilarious attempts to reconstitute these objects have included unrolling

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