Los Angeles

Sterling Ruby

Marc Foxx Gallery

“From whatever side one approaches things, the ultimate problem turns out in the final analysis to be that of distinction.” Thus begins Roger Caillois’s “Mimicry and Legendary Psychasthenia,” an essay published in 1935 in Minotaure magazine that interweaves issues of personality, biological camouflage, and spatial assimilation. Lurking in the back gallery of Marc Foxx, Sterling Ruby’s eight-minute video Dihedral, 2006—the title refers to the interaction of a vertical body and a horizontal plane—begins with the same quote, appropriating and adapting Caillois’s text as its distorted voice-over. As the narration unfolds, drops of brilliantly colored liquid—blood red, indigo, pink, green—enter the frame from the top and disperse in slow motion, gradually intermixing to a murky, indistinct brown. The narrator intones, “Space seems to be a devouring force,” and in this sense

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