New York

Laurent Grasso

Sean Kelly Gallery

With their 1991 novel The Difference Engine, which imagines the social repercussions on Victorian Britain had Charles Babbage successfully invented the mechanical computer in the 1820s, William Gibson and Bruce Sterling created the definitive novel of the now-popular sci-fi subgenre known as steam-punk. Driven by nostalgia for a vision of a future that never came to pass, and by an attendant obsession with obscure and obsolete technology, steampunk has since become a widespread trope in literature, music, and popular culture at large. Laurent Grasso’s work—though not a pure representation of the genre—shares its interest in fusing the antique and the fantastic, setting up a temporal maze littered with abandoned and inconclusive experiments.

The title of “Sound Fossil,” Grasso’s first exhibition at Sean Kelly Gallery, riffs on the idea that inanimate objects might somehow store aural

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