new-york

Keith Edmier/Richard Phillips

Petzel Gallery | West 18th Street

Both Keith Edmier and Richard Phillips are interested in popular memory of the ’60s and early ’70s and in exacting formal procedures that tweak realism toward something outlandish. Centering on Edmier’s sculptures, with a suite of drawings by Phillips in a decisive supporting role, this small show accepted nostalgia as its premise. Against this substrate, elegy morphed to cartoonish necrophilia, and the ultimate subject was a strangely conventional self-portraiture.

Edmier’s sculptures (both 1998) are discrete works, but as installed they functioned as a diptych. Both are highly detailed, life-size models, their verisimilitude contradicted by the fact that they are cast entirely in pink dental resin. Beverly Edmier, 1967 is a seated pregnant woman, stylish in a Marlo Thomas bob and Chanel suit. The flowers in A Dozen Roses are luxuriant, long-stemmed. Homage to the artist’s mother? Yes,

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