los-angeles

Dan Colen

Peres Projects

Dan Colen’s Secrets and Cymbals, Smoke and Scissors (My Friend Dash’s Wall in the Future), 2004–2006, is a life-size sculpture of a wall from a twentysomething’s garage or studio. Based on a scene also pictured in a photograph by “Dash” (the artist Dash Snow) himself, the sculpture re-creates a visually chaotic surface plastered with posters and photographs, magazine covers and pornographic images, knives and rubber gloves. Colen has crafted all of these things, and many more, from Styrofoam, paint, paper, and metal, even reproducing the wall’s infrastructure. But while many other contemporary artists also produce exacting renditions of photographic sources, Secrets and Cymbals fails to arouse the pathos at which it seems to aim. The point of his reproducing a Black Flag CD cover, say, remains obscure.

While Colen’s process is as painstaking as Dave Muller’s or Tim Gardener’s, for instance,

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