Meta-visual tricks, a labial pink mix and keystoned pretzel sticks in these art picks from our 9/25 issue.
DAVE HARDY: A HOUSE WITH GATES
Regina Rex, 1717 Troutman St., #329, through October 20th
Perched in the midst and dangling at the reaches of Regina Rex's exhibitional temple of total whiteness are Dave Hardy's elegantly hulking sculptures—improbable engineerings of glass, wood, metals, cement (and the occasional pretzel, look for it) whose equilibrium seems from some angles firm, from others precarious—and drape-like vinyl wall hangings. As the textures and colors richly gracing the latter derive from the procedural leftovers and spillings of the former, the assembly of works coheres visually and conceptually in a splendid sort of physically detached unity—the tapestral hangings like desiccated hides that once stretched around those skeleto-sculptural insides.
RICHARD PAUL: YOU MIGHT FIND YOURSELF
Theodore: Art, 56 Bogart St., through October 20th
The visio-digital trickery involved in Paul's hyper-layered photographic tableaus is unquestionably profuse, and unquestionably effective, and unquestionably exquisite. Not only does his lenticular 3D imagery—flowers, foods, sports implements, furniture, industrial cables mid-fabrication and post-truncation, and a select few gladiators for good measure—protrude with more than mere apparentness toward you, it also feels as if it's following you, teasing you, prodding you. Whether it's the wall pieces or looped video images you're beholding, that is, they also seem to behold you. Be sure, then, to divert your gaze up and down, or to fixate it and move about the room. The spatial invasiveness of a certain baguette is particularly delicious. Paired almost humorously with a basketball, it works quite well as a meta-photographic ode to Tony Parker's meta-athletic circus shots. Just a thought.
DON PABLO PEDRO: PUSS
English Kills Art Gallery, 114 Forrest St., through October 13th
Though the artist himself might be wont to disagree, it was probably a good thing that the temperatures had dipped down into the range of mid-autumnal on the evening of this exhibition's opening, for its spread of fleshily monstrous post-eroticized scroll paintings lingering about on labial-pink-warmed walls are sufficiently sweat-inducing and moisture-exuding themselves. In a good way. And abhorrent. In a good way. And surprisingly illusionistic. In a good way. And tragicomic, perhaps, in a way. And rather abundant. Pedro has been hard at work. According to grapevines, that might be understood in various ways. A must-see show no matter what the hell that means.
Whitney Museum of American Art, 945 Madison Ave., through October 6th
From the extensive Matisse show at the Met some months ago to the tighter and more recent Degas display at The Frick, and now to this Hopper exhibition at the Whitney, 2013 has given us ample opportunity to glimpse the exploratory inputs and preparatory procedures behind the works of several modern greats—and it's nearly impossible to grow tired of such displays. You'll see here a Hopper both quite surprising and very familiar: more fluid, whimsical and character-driven in many sketches and studies; increasingly staid, eventually characteristically-cum-existentially so, as works advance and decades pass. Ever an important venue for Hopper fans due to their vast holdings, the Whitney offers up another rich spread for devotees to relish, while the range and wealth of items on the table this time around—from most casual pencilings to iconic masterpieces—might well render on-the-fencers into happily sated converts.
You can follow Paul D'Agostino on Twitter @postuccio