Invisible lines connect everything: the points on our bodies, individual people living across the globe, the climate to your heating bill. Sometimes artists find ways of making those lines visible. Kurt Schwitters’ Merzbau began when he tied strings between items in his studio, then filled them in with plaster. Since 2015, Rana Siegel has been hanging lengths of cotton twine from a clothesline, attic rafters, a bookshelf, a deck railing and anchoring them to the floor with small white tiles. She calls these installations Slack, the most recent iteration of which took place at Material Exhibitions in Chicago. There Siegel arced forty-one threads from white wall to concrete floor, like snow seen in headlights, and she posted videos of herself moving delicately between the swoops. Photographs reveal what seems like a dozen different artworks, depending on the angle and light. Closeups indicate that many of the artist’s ceramic anchors have developed cracks, a state which reflects the gallery’s fractured floor, as well as the way so many of us are feeling right now. How comforting it is to note that even broken tiles can hold a thread in place.
—Lori Waxman 2020-10-28 10:24 PM