Isamu Wakabayashi

Akira Ikeda Gallery | New York

The language of Isamu Wakabayashi’s sculptures is a familiar one. What these works have to say, specifically, is another matter. Solid and grounded, the expressive capacity of these simple geometric forms is articulated in their elemental materials—sulfur, steel, linen, plaster, wood—wrought to produce archaeological surfaces that appear to have experienced oxidation, corrosion, and decay. Perhaps it is the preponderance of the pale yellow and dangerously toxic sulfur that accounts for the sense of danger emanating from Wakabayashi’s sculptures. Pockmarked with a gridded polka-dot pattern, or slaked with thin washes of this crystalline substance, his works suggest a curious technological fiction, as though they once performed a now obsolete function. Enhancing this vague sense of abandonment and uselessness, are points on the surfaces reminiscent of hookups or connections, as though some

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