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  SAM FALLS  
  SEPTEMBER 9 - OCTOBER 16, 2011  
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West Street Gallery is pleased to present a solo exhibition of new work by New York- and Los Angeles-based artist Sam Falls. The artist expands his rapidly proliferating vocabulary of forms that address time and exposure. Falls’s interest in light departs from the essential process and material limitations of photography.

Falls hand-dyes fabric and leaves it outside for a period dictated by the species of material. The 24 pieces at West Street Gallery were made by placing plywood on top of fabric. The result interprets the photogram: the exposed ground fades, embedded with time and light, precipitation, air, earth and vegetation. The dark, relatively unexposed section is a trace— neither image nor depiction, it’s an abstraction of vernacular material, and potent ghost.

In two new sculptures, Falls variously folds four-by-eight foot sheets of aluminum into free-standing objects. The structures’ forms create internal shadows over a five-year color-guaranteed vinyl, while the powder-coated exterior is color-matched and will never fade. Like a sundial, the works illustrate the movement of the sun and its relationship to topography. A third sculpture is a piece of “torn” steel, composed of one piece standard carbon steel and one piece stainless steel, cut from an enlarged scan of torn paper. The stainless steel will remain pristine as the carbon steel rusts and degenerates; the two pieces united by their confounding effect of physical vulnerability. A viewer will observe as year after year the object complements their own aging.

These sculptures are unfinished scenarios, as authorship is in part relinquished to nature and the viewer. Falls’s meditation on medium and genre blendsphotosensitivity; the compositional strategies of paintings; the objecthood of sculpture; the monumentality of land works; and the communicability of public work.