Nancy Rubins

Gagosian | Beverly Hills

It’s an understatement to note that the world changed profoundly between the completion of Nancy Rubins’s latest work and its unveiling on September 13. The ways in which we relate to works of art have changed in varying degrees since September 11, but the effect is particularly dear in the case of the lone piece comprising Rubins’s show—a gargantuan assemblage of jumbled airplane fragments.

The title of the work—Chas’ Stainless Steel, Mark Thompson’s Airplane Parts, About 1000 Pounds of Stainless Steel Wire, and Gagosian’s Beverly Hills Space—provides as good a nutshell description as any. Roughly twenty-five feet high and fifty-four feet wide at its broadest, the piece barely fit in the white-cube gallery, doing as great sculpture often does: claiming the space as its own and commanding it. The base and armature is a trussed column of welded stainless steel tubing—a

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