Raque Ford “Nighttime Grudge or How I Wanted to Be a Rockstar” at Greene Naftali, New York
You know when you are standing
And your sole is on the flooring
And your heel is digging into the floor
And that minimal area involving them
Which is wherever I make a minimal place for you
“Nighttime Grudge or How I Required to Be a Rockstar” marks Raque Ford’s debut solo exhibition at Greene Naftali, that includes a new entire body of operate that infuses abstraction with narrative opportunity. By turns slick and diaristic, intimate and bracing, Ford’s hottest wall will work and sculptures increase the official choices of her signature material: fragments of language incised into rigid sheets of coloured acrylic.
That full imbrication of type and content – what a single critic phone calls her “Plexiglass poetry” – spans her function across two and three dimensions. Panels of mirrored acrylic are etched with a spidery script and cite texts both authored and found, producing layered works that examine how identification is solid by means of the remnants of popular society. An achieved printmaker, Ford has produced a suite of monotypes at the Robert Blackburn Printmaking Workshop, broaching new official territory with experimental methods that defy the medium’s strictures. “I was turned off by the tidiness and fastidiousness of prints,” Ford recalled of her artwork school education but these exclusive functions manifest the exact same playful eclecticism she provides to all she does, combining traditional intaglio procedures like drypoint with embossed hippie flowers and pools of amazed watercolor.
At the gallery’s middle are a team of system dancefloors produced from tiled Plexi, its vivid hues tightly fitted into colorful cladding for these easy picket constructions. Ford’s penchant for prefabricated and industrial materials ties her function to the legacy of minimalism, and these sculptures channel equally the small-slung geometries of Robert Morris and the space-age Plexi packing containers of Donald Judd. The extra direct referent, even though, is Felix Gonzalez-Torres’s Untitled (Go-Go Dancing Platform) of 1991, a newborn blue plinth occupied for five sweaty minutes for each working day by a male dancer in silver lamé sizzling trousers. Subtler in her queering, Ford also adorns her platforms to make room for ideas and impulses at odds with Minimalism’s demanding exclusions: flamboyance and feminine anger and sadness, motivation and a night out at the club, with graffiti scratched into the rest room mirror that displays us back to ourselves.
At Greene Naftali, New York
right until April 9, 2022
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