New York

Olga Balema, 1, 2019, elastic bands, paint, glue, nails, staples, dimensions variable.

Olga Balema

Bridget Donahue

10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5 . . . The integers titling Olga Balema’s thirteen works, all produced this year, descended unsteadily in a clockwise direction from Bridget Donahue’s entrance. Each number corresponded to a diagrammatic composition of thin elastic strips, some of which were stretched out in lengths of up to forty-five feet, raised slightly above the floor by the nails and staples that held them in place. In some areas the strands were split in two or glued together to create intersections, mostly at right angles; elsewhere, extraneous bands curled underfoot, like crimped ribbons or dried flora, while others crept up the walls as if seeking escape. The numeric titles and limited media heightened the impression that these were formal exercises, less figurative than most of Balema’s work—packages of latex, photographs, sundry fluids, or assemblages of steel and fleshy ingredients not unfamiliar

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