Currently on view at the Salt Lake Art center is Launch 11: Recipients of the International Sculpture Center 2009 Student Awards featuring eleven up-and-coming artists. Is it just me, or do you know you're getting old when the artists showing at the Salt Lake Art Center have names like Caelie and Kandace? But we're not here to judge the silly names, we're here to look at art. And if you like the modern-day, sculpture-type thingys, then you'll want to spend an hour or two at the Salt Lake Art Center.
There's a lot of interesting stuff and much of it explores themes appropriate for a younger generation of artists. I was drawn to works that approached universal themes with the enthusiasm of youth. Here are a few of my favorites.
Luke Achterberg's Relative, 2009 (Painted steel) is meticulously well crafted and it's graceful swirls feel like a digital flourish brought life and suddenly frozen.
Totem, 2009 (Hydrastone) by Caelie Winchester is reminiscient of Marc Quinn's cast sculptures but with a bit more humor.
Here's a sculpture for anyone whoever played with iron filings and magnets when you were a kid. Manufact Ring Sympathies, 2009 (Iron chips, magnets, mannequin, steel) by Mathew Boonstra features a video projection that I really didn't like. But this sculpture covered in metal filings is opulent. It was hard not to touch it.
Anyone who's been to my house knows I have a thing for hands. So it's no surprise that my favorite work in the show is Critical Mass, 2008 (Wax) by Kandace Collins. The hands are pedestrian enough. But they way they are presented, secluded in a dimly lit room, makes them more about life and death and less about wax casts.
Sanford Mirling's molten club chair titled Brandi, Won't You?, 2008 (Oak, vinyl) is surprisingly effective. I don't know what it all means but it's interesting. I love it when artists can abstract an object so violently and yet still allow the original idea to come through.