B. Wurtz Turns Trash to Treasure
Two of the “Fetish” sculptures by the artist known as B. Wurtz, from his solo show now at Metro Pictures in New York. Wurtz’s pieces ought not to work: Found-object assemblage is one of the most tired modes in the art world today. Maybe the reason Wurtz’s do work is because he came to that mode before most others and has pursued it with more dedication, and because the trouve-ness of his objets feels almost incidental, rather than the single point and device of his work. It feels as though Wurtz simply uses his trash as an art supply that he’s mastered, the way another artist might master oil paint or carved wood. Of course, oil paint and wood have a harder time calling up images of little girls with bows in their hair, without ever depicting them.
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