Sorry It's a Mess, We Just Moved In!: Curated by Roya Sachs

29 September - 13 November 2021

LAMB Gallery is pleased to present, SORRY IT’S A MESS, WE JUST MOVED IN!, a group exhibition that explores notions of transience, impermanence and identity in everyday objects.

Curated by Roya Sachs, the show includes works by: assume vivid astro focus, Oliver Beer, Koos Buster, Patricia Camet, Christo & Jeanne-Claude, Martin Creed, Fischli & Weiss, Isa Genzken, Clara Hastrup, Mona Hatoum, Michael Landy, Fernando Otero, Laurence Owen, Rolf Sachs, Camila Sposati, Haim Steinbach, Erwin Wurm, and Studio Zimoun.

SORRY IT’S A MESS, WE JUST MOVED IN! brings to question the way in which we relate to objects, be they disposable commodities, forms of function, or treasured memories. The works play with the senses, be it through their materiality, tantalizing or familiar presence, or their purposeful representation. What objects do we consider to be disposable or valuable, irrelevant or irreplaceable? The sculpture-heavy, raw presentation unveils objects outside of their usual context. A bemusing presence pulls the viewer into a surrounding that feels entirely temporary, as though someone has just moved in.

As you enter the space, a state of tension is found with a series of objects that feel entirely fragile, as though suspended in both time and space. Isa Genzken’s (b.1948, Germany) iconic plaster replica bust, Nefertiti (2019) confronts the onlooker at eye level, her work often interrogating the impact of our increasingly commodified and interconnected culture on our everyday lives. In juxtaposition to the Ancient Egyptian queen - whose image evokes an ideal of beauty, is the surrounding wall work of ceramicist Patricia Camet (b.1972, Peru). Camet’s pieces are made from residues of cheap and fragile plastic industry packaging, which are then cast through plaster moulds and recycled into ceramic sculptures. Historical resonance and contemporary commodities come into direct contact with one another.

As one navigates into the central area of the gallery, the multi-leveled installation celebrates ordinary objects and everyday situations. Form and function are intertwined with humour and experimentation. Martin Creed’s (b.1968, United Kingdom) rotating patinated bronze Peanut Butter on Toast (2018) and wood sample square comically brings weight to the otherwise commonplace. Alongside it, Haim Steinbach’s (b.1944, Israel)Untitled (Pantone 872) (2016) plays with found and existing objects. He doesn’t manipulate them, but rather lets them live and breathe in their own right - an ode to Duchamp’s readymade. A series of crate-installed pieces on the central wall of the gallery act as a sort of cabinet of curiousity - a collection of nostalgic treasures and manipulated materials.

In the transitioning back area of the gallery, an intimate series of works present ideals of impermanence and deterioration. Michael Landy (b.1963, United Kingdom) is known for his monumental performances that heavily critique the nature of consumerism, and in this case, presents two watercolours of belongings tossed away on the street during the pandemic. Directly opposite, Laurence Owen’s (b.1984, United Kingdom) intricate yet structural sculpture is an assemblage of collected street detritus and studio paraphernalia. In this area, a clustered environment of household familiarities create a tactile interaction. In the back corner of the gallery, an uncanny lens and language of the absurd is found in the work of Clara Hastrup (b.1990, Denmark). The Perishable Sculptures are set on a blue homogenous backdrop with highly saturated lighting, taking a familiar, sanitized and mass manufactured quality, directly contrasting with its slowly decaying, physical counterpart. The playful narrative points to an endless cycle of consumption and most poignantly, to the illusions that are formed under a pristinely crafted veneer.

SORRY IT’S A MESS, WE JUST MOVED IN! unravels these themes of temporality, of detachment and attachment of our present-day selves. In a time when technology has shrunk our physical identity and oversaturated our digital persona, are we becoming less and less attached to the physical objects that surround us, or do they have more meaning than ever before?

 

We'd invite you in, but it's a mess!