Todd Murphy

The Lowe Gallery

Todd Murphy’s pieces are striking for several reasons, including their scale—a third of the works in this show are of imposing proportions (around 10 by 12 feet). Murphy’s imagistic vocabulary of undefined symbols afloat in an open-ended syntax may or may not be intended as narrative. In various combinations, the works feature: geese; chandeliers; a wind-up toy duck; faceless figures in voluminous dresses; a boxer in long underwear, dukes raised, standing on a brocade chair; another figure, its face hidden from the viewer, standing on an ornate chair shouldering a small old-fashioned airplane; and still another figure, visage blurred, dress flapping in the wind, clutching a pumpkin.

Murphy’s choice of subject matter seems to point mutely toward a bid for the mythic, the archetypal, the enigmatic, the gorgeously mysterious. And though the majority of these artworks are untitled, the few

to keep reading

Artforum print subscribers have full access to this article. If you are a subscriber, sign in below.

Not registered for artforum.com? Register here.

SUBSCRIBE NOW for only $50 a year—65% off the newsstand price—and get the print magazine plus full online access to this issue and our archive.*

Order the PRINT EDITION of the March 1993 issue for $17 or the ONLINE EDITION for $5.99.

* This rate applies to U.S. domestic subscriptions.