los-angeles

Christopher Pate

JAIL

So apropos was this show’s centerpiece to a state of affairs that has only just come into focus—the too-shallow foundation of recent skyrocketing global economic growth—that it suggested an artist adept at reading and translating the culture around him in ways that seem almost prophetic. Completed earlier last year, the work, titled Bricks, comprises six roughly square panels of the same size, hung on the wall in pyramid formation. Pate has covered each panel first with burlap and then with fabric silk-screened with a blue sky and puffy white clouds, and, over that, with white mortar patterns: surreal Magritte-like compositions, in which skies appear as so many bricks. On each panel, Pate has isolated a pyramidal stack of six bricks and covered it with gold leaf, presenting it as a substance both precious and suggestive of superficiality. And while the low positioning of these stacks within

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