new-york

Maryam Jafri, Boy & Boy Continued (detail), 2017, ink-jet prints, two sheets, 6 x 9“ and 7 x 5” (depicted).

Maryam Jafri

Kai Matsumiya

Maryam Jafri, Boy & Boy Continued (detail), 2017, ink-jet prints, two sheets, 6 x 9“ and 7 x 5” (depicted).

I confess I’ve always secretly lusted after the giant, wall-hung crossword puzzles sold by such estimable purveyors as SkyMall and Hammacher Schlemmer. Measuring seven by seven feet and containing tens of thousands of squares, this is the kind of crossword that would require true commitment and would provide an unrivaled source of procrastination. Imagine my delight, then, upon seeing Maryam Jafri’s crossword installation Where We’re At (all works cited, 2017). Built within a one hundred-inch-square wooden frame in collaboration with New York Times puzzle maker Ben Tausig, Jafri’s thirty-six-clue crossword was so large relative to the gallery space that it could be viewed in its entirety only from an angle. In the black squares that separate answers, the Pakistani-born American artist had placed books befitting the current political climate, from P. T. Barnum’s The Art of Money

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