DIS-FUNCTIONAL

July 10 - September 26, 2014

Arman

Phone Accumulation

ca. late 1960s

telephone handsets in plexiglas box

20 x 15 x 11 in.

Robert Arneson

A Teapot? 

1969

luster glazed ceramic

12 x 9 x 9 in.

Robert Baribeau

Cigar Box

2003

mixed media box with acrylic and collage

7 x 5 1/4 x 5 1/4 in.

Dan Basen

Untitled (Matchsticks)

1964

pencil, paint and matches on paper

12 x 10 1/2 in.

Dan Basen

Untitled

mid-1960s

mixed media construction

13 x 11 1/2 x 2 in.

Barton Benes

Untitled

ca. 1973

mixed media book construction

7 x 6 3/4 x 8 in.

Carlton Bradford

Throw Me a Curve

1993

wood with decals

23 x 14 x 2 1/4 in. 

Carlton Bradford

I-Beam with Two Guns

1990

steel and walnut

17 x 31 x 12 in.

Dennis Clive

Zeppelin Terminal

1979

glazed ceramic

9 1/2 x 29 1/2 x 10 1/2 in.

Dennis Clive

Gas Lamp

1982

glazed ceramic

33 x 11 x 11 in.

Joseph Cornell

Object

1939

mixed media construction

1 1/4 x 7 x 8 3/4 in.

Dorothy Grebenak

Eye Chart

ca. 1960s

wool

32 1/2 x 68 in.

Derrick Guild

Untitled

1997

ceramic

9 1/2 x 11 1/2 x 3/4 in. 

Richard Haden

Tar

mid-1980s

mahogany painted wood

8 x 6 1/2 x 7 in.

Jacob Kass

Titicus Rd. N. Salem, N.Y.

1981

magna acrylic and oil on metal blade of handsaw

7 1/2 x 30 1/2 x 1 in.

Richard Minsky

Chemistry in Warfare

1993

book, paint, gasmask and toxic ordinance

8 x 5 x 4 in.

Wayne Nowack

Origins of a Celebration

1962-73

mixed media construction

18 x 15 x 15 in.

Philadelphia Wire Man

Untitled

mixed media: plastic, metal and found objects

4 1/2 x 3 x 1 1/2 in.

Philadelphia Wire Man
Untitled
mixed media: metal, plastic and found objects
4 1/2 x 1 3/4 x 1 3/4 in.

Philadelphia Wire Man
Untitled
mixed media: plastic, metal and found objects
4 1/2 x 2 x 1 3/4 in.

Philadelphia Wire Man

Untitled

before 1995

mixed media tape, plastic metal and wire

4 3/4 x 2 x 1 1/2 in.

Philadelphia Wire Man

Untitled

before 1995

mixed media tape, plastic and found objects

6 1/2 x 2 x 1 1/2 in.

Vladimir Salamun

Four Point Skew Back Rip Saw

ca. 1978

saw, resin and teeth

30 x 20 x 3 in.

Richard Stankiewicz

On Schedule

1956

welded found metal objects

10 x 10 x 5 3/4 in.

Wayne Thiebaud

Untitled

ca. 1968

oil on canvas mounted to a cigar box

2 1/2 x 5 3/8 x 2 1/2 in.

William Umbreit

Clam Rake

1974

wood and steel

120 x 60 x 22 in.

William Umbreit

Pitchfork

ca. 1977

steel and wood

82 x 8 x 3 in.

Press Release

Allan Stone Projects is pleased to announce Dis-Functional, July 9-September 26, 2014, a group exhibition of art mostly created from functional sources, with materials, content and iconography addressing questions of functionality. Sometimes ironic, sometimes formal, sometimes surreal, this exhibition examines diverse means by which negating function and shifting context yield shifts in meaning. With materials such as matches, rakes, pistols, i-beams, books, cigar boxes, saws, hardware, and imagery of a fossilized semi-truck, a crushed motorcycle, and a rusted can, the legacy of Duchamp’s 1917 Fountain is readily visible in the diversity of this exhibition.

 

Tools and hardware feature prominently, with nuts and bolts incorporated into Arman’s cast resin relief and Dan Basen’s windowed box construction, Jacob Kass’ and Vladimir Salamun’s augmented saws, the Philadelphia Wire Man’s patinated skeins, Richard Stankiewicz’s welded wall piece On Schedule, 1956, and William Umbreit’s twisted rakes. Works by Carlton Bradford incorporate two pistols piercing an i-beam, as well as a bent baseball bat. César’s Compression de Motos Honda (Compressed Motorcycle), 1972, and Dennis Clive’s ceramic “fossil” of a semi-truck, challenge our expectations and hint at the impending obsolescence of transportation mainstays. Richard Haden also questions function on multiple levels in his masterfully carved and painted mahogany trompe l’oeil sculpture of a rusted-shut can of tar. In another feat of illusion, painter Derrick Guild undermines the function of an object central to his practice by presenting a blank canvas perfectly rendered in cast porcelain. Other painters include Robert Baribeau and Wayne Thiebaud, who apply their signature motifs to cigar boxes. Joseph Cornell, Richard Minsky and Barton Benes each supplant our expectations of a book’s purpose to dramatic effect. On equally surreal terms Wayne Nowack clogs a birdcage with toys. Dorothy Grebenak begs the function of a vernacular medium in her 1960s hooked rug in the form of a massive eye chart. Robert Arneson rejected the idea that ceramic artists can produce only utilitarian items and began creating nonfunctional clay pieces in the 1960s, such as A Teapot?, 1969, in this exhibition. A folk art “memory vessel” in the show began as a humble pot whose function was nullified and its meaning elevated by an anonymous artist who encrusted it with objects of personal significance.

 

The use of functional sources has been central to an ever more inclusive definition of art since Picasso and Braque first introduced wallpaper scraps and rope into their paintings, and Duchamp more infamously signed and placed a urinal on an exhibition pedestal. Motivating these seminal and dissident gestures was an appetite to expand the scope of art from an esthetic endeavor to a contextual one. Each of the artists in this exhibition continues that dialogue with distinctive means.