In this book, Dan Adler addresses recent tendencies in contemporary art toward assemblage sculpture and how these works incorporate tainted materials – often things left on the side of the road, according to the logic and progress of the capitalist machine – and combine them in ways that allow each element to retain a degree of empirical specificity. Adler develops a range of aesthetic models through which these practices can be understood to function critically. Each chapter focuses on a single exhibition: Isa Genzken’s "OIL" (German Pavilion, Venice Biennale, 2007), Geoffrey Farmer’s midcareer survey (Musée d’art contemporain, Montréal, 2008), Rachel Harrison’s "Consider the Lobster" (CCS Bard Hessel Museum of Art, 2009), and Liz Magor’s "The Mouth and Other Storage Facilities" (Henry Art Gallery, Seattle, 2008).
"This book is an argument for paying more attention to the material conditions of sculpture—not as a return to formalism, but as a powerful and necessary tool to cut through the lingo of installation art and the capaciousness of digital culture."
- Gloria Sutton, Northeastern University Art
Introduction 1. Rachel Harrison: "Consider the Lobster" 2. Isa Genzken: "OIL" 3. Geoffrey Farmer: "Me into Many" 4. Liz Magor: "The Mouth and Other Storage Facilities" Conclusion