New York

View of “Davina Semo,” 2019. Photo: Pierre Le Hors.

View of “Davina Semo,” 2019. Photo: Pierre Le Hors.

Davina Semo

Marlborough | Chelsea

Davina Semo’s sculptures have an unvarnished quality that can make them tough to love. Of course, she’s well aware of this condition, and based on the evidence of “ALL THE WORLD,” her solo exhibition at Marlborough Contemporary, she’s not much inclined to alter it. The artist’s stated aim is to reflect the present-day urban environment with all its awkward disjunction and waste, so the objects she engineers are supposed to be visually grating. But they come up short—the patina of modish roughness combined with an attempt at a refreshing honesty feels a little too stage-managed for (dis)comfort.

Semo’s installation featured at least one worthwhile component, however; every so often, a soft chime would reverberate through the gallery. The source of this welcome interruption to an otherwise unrelenting experience was a series of bells, cast by the artist in rough-hewn, patinated bronze and

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