The creative force that is Helmut Lang has produced some seriously intriguing art since retiring from fashion in 2005. His previous sculptural endeavour saw him destroying more than 25 years worth of work, shredding 6,000 of his garments to create a series of sculptures entitled 'Make It Hard'. His latest body of work, on show at 24 Washington Square North, comprises totem pole-like stacks of found objects.
Co-curated by Mark Fletcher and Neville Wakefield, 'Sculptures' continues an exploration into the realms of 'abstraction and figuration' for Lang, who is currently based in New York and Long Island. The 20 works are instantly striking as vertical monochrome structures. Add to this the unavoidable psycho-sexual element to their phallic shapes and it's hard to imagine their humble origins as discs of industrial rubber.
Materials like foam, plaster, rubber, sheepskin and tar have become Lang's artistic trademark. Using the 'distress' of found objects as a starting point, he creates statements of reassembly and renewal. Often, the evidence of their previous functions is not completely erased, as is the case with 'Sculptures', where the softened edges within the sculptures hint at both the process of erosion and transition into gallery artifact.