san-francisco

Liam Everett, Untitled (Limnos), 2015, acrylic, enamel, alcohol, and salt on oil-primed linen, 77 × 60". From “Nacht und Traüme.”

“Nacht und Träume”

Altman Siegel

Liam Everett, Untitled (Limnos), 2015, acrylic, enamel, alcohol, and salt on oil-primed linen, 77 × 60". From “Nacht und Traüme.”

The way in which creative expression is achieved in an era of often extreme ironic self-positioning was an implicit subtext of this summer group show, albeit one uncertainly realized. Zarouhie Abdalian’s a caveat, a decoy, 2014, a site-specific installation whose sound track looped Schubert’s “Nacht und Träume”—a lied celebrating the (irrational) unconscious and mourning the loss of dreams that comes with waking—lent the exhibition its title and set its tone. Significantly, a caveat’s sound element was forced to compete with the cacophonic street noise blaring through one (pointedly) open window in the fourth-floor gallery. Anchored by a plastic owl perched on the open window’s sill, Abdalian’s bare-bones work mustered its affect chiefly via its orchestration of this inside/outside aural blur. The ingenuous, inward-looking Romanticism of the Schubert lied contrasted not

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