Ester Partegàs Civilization Is Overrated 06 March 2004 - 10 April 2004
Ester Partegàs, Civilization is Overrated, 2004, plastic, metal studs, enamel, paper, acrylic, wood, plaster, 396 x 369 x 369 in. (1005.84 x 1005.84 x 1005.84 cm.)
Ester Partegàs, 2004, installation view, Foxy Production, New York
Ester Partegàs, Civilization is Overrated, 2004 (detail.)
Ester Partegàs, 2004, installation view, Foxy Production, New York

Foxy Production announces Civilization Is Overrated, ESTER PARTEGÀS’ fourth New York solo exhibition. Civilization Is Overrated presents a darkly comic turn to Partegas’ Pop-influenced handmade explorations of urban space and consumer lifestyles. Dramatically-scaled sculptures engulf the entire gallery: a trompe-l’oeil thirteen foot high throw-away plastic bag is squeezed between floor and ceiling; a regular-sized bench nestles at its base, appearing miniaturized; a glistening wintry tree sculpture towers alongside, furthering a sense of disorientation; other fabricated detritus are crammed into the remaining space.

Partegas invites us to enter a paradoxical, almost Beckettian world that suggests the possibility of both inevitable apocalypse and a continuous present – doomsday everyday. Her “endgame” embodies a cool aesthetic that transcends reassuring notions of the “handmade” and questions the packaged nature of urban design and culture. Partegas brings a “Biotech” currency into play: her angular tree sculpture is an actualization of virtual modeling; its wooden trunk and branches are geometrical, yet its irregular structure suggests mutation. Civilization Is Overrated offers no safe viewing positions; like an enormous viral life form, it physically overwhelms.