A show of new work by Richard Deacon opens at LA Louver tomorrow, and I'm reminded what a sucker I am for paper that looks like not-paper. His marbled polygonal columns are folded prints, but have a heftier presence. The patterns and neon splatters make no attempt to be truly illusionistic (nothing in nature really looks like that), but they look more solid than hollow, with texture and weight. That not-paper pretense somehow emphasizes the sculptures' "paper-ness" all the more.
Looking at them, I can't help but think about Tauba Auerbach's work, particularly this marbled book sculpture Onyx. A similarly confounding object that seems almost too good to be true (Ah, to gaze upon a block of stone sliced like deli meat!). The piece is beautiful and puzzling, and it does less work to remind the viewer of its true material which in turn requires the viewer to do that work herself.
And then there's Richard Artschwager. With his Formica and Celotex (shown here Port from 1991), Artschwager is chasing down the same confession from his materials: "I am fake wood!" but without asking his surfaces to lie first. He lets the plastic speak for itself. It makes me a little more open-minded about my faux granite kitchen countertop.