The current installation piece by Stephen G. Rhodes in Chelsea’s Metro Pictures gallery provokes the senses and resuscitates sedated areas of the brain causing disorientation as they awaken to timeless clocks, broken drinking mugs and a four wall rotating projection beaming images of parking lot fires and wig wearing men. Rhodes’ textual translation of Immanuel Kant’s The Illnesses of the Head is then further transmogrified into the visual realm making the artist’s New York debut exhibition a dense jungle of connotations.
Rhodes’ fusion of eighteenth century philosophy and twenty first century art production either attract or repel observers instantly. The first room of the three-room installment stages a familiar setting for viewers who are subject to delirium. For the more rational viewers, the first room, a showcase of ordinary domestic objects bathed in Rhodes’ artistic elixir, is vexing; they agitate into the succeeding rooms in search of elucidation.
The second room hosts a video segment which is projected onto the prude, orthodox, white walls of the Chelsea gallery. Rhodes encircles the visitors with turbulent noises and obscure imagery as the projector orbits around a desolate table lamp in the center of the room.
The final room in Rhodes’ installment is spatially more fragmented (artificial wall positioned to shatter the rooms quadratic floor plan) but visually more conservative. The finale of mixed media sculpture, mounted wall cabinets and floor grazing canvases is the closest thing comprehension-seeking visitors will encounter before they exit; greeted by the reality of a un-salted New York sidewalk in February.