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How Things Work 

Wednesday, Sep 12 2007
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Everyday items such as doilies, dog hair, buttons, and couches don’t normally make it into an artist’s toolkit. But at the group show “Don’t Try This At Home: A Group Exhibition Obsessively Reshaping the Ordinary,” these humble objects get transformed thanks to a dose of wit and some labor-intensive craftiness. Lauren Davies makes miniature dogs out of dog hair, but she doesn’t simply mash together indiscriminate schnauzers — she makes purebred animals using purebred hair. (She also hauls in her extensive collection of dryer lint.) Stephani Martinez’s doily sculptures, however, might be mistaken for clearance sale castoffs. Piled in the corner, they look exactly like the real thing, because they are. But touch them — actually, just lean in for a long look — and you’ll find she got ahold of a bucket of plaster. (Martinez also hauls in an extensive collection of her own, matching Davies’ stockpile of lint with a wall-size sheet of buttons.) Zachary Royer Scholz, whose previous “Situations” pieces involved such everyday sights as a tattered mattress pad sitting in the dirt and a stick resting on a sidewalk, reconstructs couches using every part of the couch, revealing something you have no business sitting on. And Tamara Albaitis finds the music of the everyday with sound art that explores the harmonies of coffee makers and washing machines. An opening reception starts at 6 p.m. on Sept. 17.
Sept. 17-Oct. 13, 2007

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Michael Leaverton

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