melbourne

Kathy Temin

Kathy Temin uses fake fur, felt, plastic, and polystyrene to make trashy, handcrafted objects and assemblages. In her most recent show, an image of a cat was splayed like a crazy logo across a huge mat made of artificial fur. The pile was so thick and the design so attenuated that, in this warehouse-size gallery with its polished concrete floor, Cat Mat, 1997, seemed at first to be merely a slightly soiled-looking dust magnet. Temin’s throwaway logic was further played out in the clumsily sculpted, awkwardly placed polystyrene screens she used to partition the otherwise elegant exhibition space. With their hand-cut perforations, the dividers have a cheap and nasty feeling—like Cat Mat, they have a sting in their tail.

Although the works look used, they manage to maintain a certain freshness thanks to an ambiguous, self-deprecating silliness that is convincing because it is so contrived.

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