Do Something (Else) To It

I don’t remember the inflationary period, 2011, Don Edler, image via
What with the title taken from the famous Jasper Johns quote and all, I was interested to read the dialogue/press release between the artists in Freight + Volume’s upcoming show, “Do Something (Else) To It.”
The artists are Don Edler, George Jenne, and Andrew Smenos. The opening is rescheduled for the 29th.
The show will be about process, and, as Edler says, “transformation and translation.” His mention of a plywood sofa sent me searching for images of his work, and that’s where I found I don’t remember the inflationary period, above. The 2011 sculpture consists of a molded acrylic sheet partially lined with foil, which rests on a found scrapwood table painted with pink latex. Given Edler’s stated interest in cosmology, I’ll guess the title is a reference to the universe before the economy.
Untitled, 2001, Wade Guyton, image via phillips de pury
But what caught my eye in all this, and the reason I’m posting it, even though I imagine it has little or nothing to do with Edler’s practice, is the formal similarities between this one sculpture and some early works by Wade Guyton.
Back in 2001 or so, some of the first sculptures Wade showed were made from smoked & mirrored acrylic. The most prominent was a tower-like structure, 8-9 feet high, in a summer group show at Gavin Brown [Actually, that was 2002]. But there were also smaller ones, tabletop sized, which were perched, Brancusi-style, on found tables. I saw one at Bellwether in Brooklyn in 2000.
Another one I’ve seen, from 2001, turned up last year at Phillips in London. It had been bought locally from an Austrian show. The images of Edler’s sculpture just reminded me of the [c. 2001] photos of Guyton’s piece.
Until this summer, when I visited Wade’s studio, I’d always thought that these bases were made, not found. Not tables, but “table-like scuptures.” The first sculpture of Wade’s I’d ever seen was a large cubic form made from parquet floor tiles, so I’d always assumed he’d made everything. When I mentioned this to him, he just laughed and laughed.
Also, it really bummed me out–and it’s crazy to think about it now, considering–to learn how, because of space and money, much of his early work got tossed out. Maybe it’s time to bring some of that stuff, up to say, the HDTS era back somehow. I mean, really, there oughta be a retrospective or something.