Kate Clark: Perfect Strangers
Claire Oliver Gallery: NY, NY
I’m posting these here in hopes that someone likes them more than I did. I don't mean that to come across as snarky as it seems—I really wanted to like this exhibit. I tend to enjoy art that uses animal imagery and I’m oddly fascinated by the taxidermized specimens at the American Museum of Natural History. But, in the end, I found Clark’s sculptures to have the curious draw of a circus sideshow without rising to the level of art. Perhaps the anthropomorphism is too literal—yes, we are all just animals. Certainly they are disarming for a moment but, surprisingly, the effect of a human face grafted onto the animal body does not seem to ennoble either species. They are neither wild nor intelligent...mainly just a little sad.
Normally I don’t bother posting about a show I don’t like but, genetic experiment gone wrong, shape-shifting tricksters....there’s something about “science fiction, fantasy, and related subjects” here...