new-york

Roy McMakin, Untitled (a table that looks like a sculpture), 2016, enamel on aluminum, eastern maple, plywood, 44 × 31 3/4 × 21 3/4".

Roy McMakin

Garth Greenan Gallery

Roy McMakin, Untitled (a table that looks like a sculpture), 2016, enamel on aluminum, eastern maple, plywood, 44 × 31 3/4 × 21 3/4".

The dozen or so objects—call them sculpture, furniture, or something poised indeterminately in between—included in Roy McMakin’s recent exhibition at Garth Greenan Gallery for the most part proceeded from a superficially simple line of inquiry: What happens to a conventionally functional artifact when that artifact has its conventional function tampered with? It’s a question with which McMakin—a Wyoming-born artist and craftsman who studied at the University of California, San Diego, in the late 1970s and early ’80s with teachers such as Allan Kaprow and Manny Farber and who today also works both as an architect and a commercial furniture designer—has spent years engaging. It’s also one situated within a constellation of philosophical inquiries that the world of contemporary art has in recent years increasingly turned its attention toward: the matter, as the

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