On view until October 22nd is Haim Steinbach’s Creature at Tanya Bonakdar. The work varies a lot, showing familiar Steinbach themes and also new explorations with text, patterns on the wall, and singular objects. The first gallery room shows typical Steinbach- random chotchkies on beautifully constructed simple wood triangular shelves. The next rooms featured large black vinyl text put onto two walls (No Elephants and and to think it all started with a mouse), while the other two walls have shallow wooden frames with painted bronze Degas statuettes inside of dancers. Upstairs shows use of entire walls, one with a floral pattern, one with a squiggly absent-minded pattern, and another again with text, reading, “you don’t get it, do you?” These walls are set up at odd angles to each other, making the viewer squeeze by them until they find themselves in this odd shaped room, only to read the statement that Steinbach suspects we don’t understand. Honestly, I’m not quite sure that I do. Although I appreciate any artist who tries to delve into new territory, I did love the first gallery with the objects thrown together on shelves. They are at once personally familiar and inaccessible. The objects, so beautifully presented on the shelves, appear to obviously go together; the viewer feels a memory or story from their own past from these objects. But at the same time, the meaning is inaccessible to us because we can never know why Steinbach chose these objects, and what their pairings might mean to him, because the pairings are so random. Here is where an interesting question emerges: as viewers of art, should we focus more on what the work may mean only to us, or what meaning the artist intended? In the case of Steinbach, his playful nature seems to suggest that our minds should wander, coming to our own conclusions.