It is now a fact that the combination of antique statues, or of sculptures that look like ancient, and pastel colors, works. You can simply open another panel and type from your keyboard the word Vaporwave and then observe the countless fake greek/roman statues on backgrounds in pastel colors ranging from pink to light blue.
This concept has been well understood by Urs Fischer, who ends his successful show today at Sadie Coles, and Alex Israel whom exhibition will instead soon start at Gagosian, Rome, together with Kathryn Andrews. Both artists in fact, have seduced the audience with pastel skies, one with 3,000 suspended plaster raindrops, the other with large-scale unframed paintings of LA sunsets (Sky Backdrop has been painted by a scene painter at Warner Bros). And by the way, everybody remembers Israel’s installations at Museo Civico Diocesano di S. Maria dei Servi.
In addition, both have well thought of placing statues crumbling under or in front of pastel backgrounds, Urs Fischer’s sculptures describe an earthbound world of disorderly, golem-like forms in contrast with the symphony of shapes suspended above. The floor-based works and the raindrops constitute a “heaven & earth” tableau. While Alex Israel claims to believe in the Stardust of Hollywood, in the magic that transforms an object just through the appearance on film, pictured in association with a star whose image is just as fictitious as the movie itself.
In most installation views the pastel colors give to the statue a sense of digital, of New-Ancient, which is probably the right direction of many contemporary artistic practices. In Urs Fischer’s exhibition the pastel drops are emblematic of a strain of fairytale, surrealism pervading that Fischer’s work, variously manifested by his wryly anthropomorphic sculptures. Both Urs Fischer and Alex Israel deepen those concepts by insisting on impermanence and contingency as new parameters for their art.