The words "If You See Something, Say Something" should ring familiar for any subway regular. But for visual artist Kiya Kim
, the phrase didn't sit right. After all, how does one define "something," and does it always pose a threat?
So Kim tweaked the phrase to If You See Nothing, Say Something
, the title of her first curated show, at the Invisible Dog
in Boerum Hill (through July 25). She insisted only that the works represent some type of "discovery," and with a premise so broad, any show is bound to lack direction. Kim's own contribution, a series of large silhouetted faces entitled "Would you like some tea?" (2010), hangs alongside Hee Jung Cho
's "Laundry City," a painting series on a clothes line. The works don't quite fit together, and the media range as widely as the executions. But a close look at the gallery's rear wall reveals the show's standout pieces.
's "Needy!!" (2010), an impressive tangle of chair frames and fluorescent cubes, hangs from the ceiling and dominates the back wall. Another installation, "Rock," (2010) by Hong Seon Jang
, is a visual contradiction, looming over the viewer with its great bulk, though its fragility is betrayed by its flimsy medium—aluminum foil. Its shadow nearly obscures Adam Parker Smith
's "untitled (clock)," a grandfather clock basically destroyed by fire, though its pendulum rocks steadily back and forth—obsolete, yet refusing to die.
Some of the show's smaller pieces are pleasant to look at, but not much else. Sea Chang Chongs "Suffer from Nightmares" (2008), Dürer-inspired drawings on a series of paper cups, are deftly executed and creepy. And while Thomas McKean's cheeky Metrocard sculptures are the only works that draw on the show's title, like many of the other pieces in If You See Nothing
, their appeal lies more in their novelty than anything else.