Marc Librizzi: More Chairs About Buildings and Homes

May 1 - May 30, 2021

30 Orchard St


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Real Pain is delighted to announce “More Chairs About Buildings and Homes,” Marc Librizzi’s first solo exhibition. Working across drawing, painting, and sculpture, Librizzi employs the functional logic and material language of furniture, even if its aims: comfort, usability, interchangeability, are absent. In a pair of slight pencil drawings on parchment, dull wire shelving is transformed into a group of limpid bodies whose outstretched appendages support each other in the manner of office-surplus. Two bronze table works provide gentle counterpoint: they are functional candle-holders, their lapping flames forming a makeshift domicile for the fire people who doze inside (you’re only on fire if you’re not made of fire). The 2020 painting, “A Space Between Eyes,” explores slippages between mundane interiors and magical realist landscapes, and the more recent "Lifting Folds, Making Creases; Soon to be,” takes this further, albeit in a more restrained fashion. It suggests that hiding behind every ordinary IKEA duvet might be a delicate ballet of hardhat construction, if only one knows how to look. It hangs in an exquisite artist frame; here, enough is never enough.

The centerpiece of “More Chairs” is a gesamtkunstwerk hobbyhorse that is only superficially a chair. Upon close inspection, its frame reveals countless vignettes—domestic scenes, conveyances, chance encounters on porches, landing pads, stanchions, utility poles, laundry lines, poured concrete and floating staircases. A masterwork of marquetry, metalwork, ceramic, and glass, its surfaces are enameled, varnished, flocked, shingled, painted, patinated and braised. It presents such a clamor of activity and conflicting modalities that the effect is simultaneously absurd and profoundly moving. On its central welded column, creatures carry out their activities in utopian terraced harmony, ala James Wines’ famous “Highrise of Homes” drawings. Among them are a spiral-staircase-highway, “two-boot” creatures whose bodies consist of a single connective leg, a Joe Btfsplk dog, a crouching cloud phantasm, and an even smaller tenament-in-a-tenament.

Librizzi is fluent in multiple design languages, and while echoes of builders like Andrea Branzi, Nicola L, Nathalie Du Pasquier, and Massimo Scoliari can be found, his project is a lot closer to the work of H. C. Westermann or his lesser-known contemporary, Jeremy Anderson, in its articulation of a quintessentially American paradigm. A native of New Jersey, Librizzi currently works in Ridgewood, Brooklyn, his own studio nestled among a hodgepodge of bawdy laminate surfaces, decorative glass, and high-decibel architectural follies. Discovering him there is not unlike disappearing down the trap door rabbit hole he so frequently employs, into a world of unbridled wonder.

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