Jill Katz
April 22, 2015

Barbara Kasten: Stages receives widespread critical acclaim in Aesthetica, Artforum, Art in America, BOMB, and more

Barbara Kasten, *Axis*, installation view (2015)

For each piece, she placed a camera in front of an arrangement of objects in her studio, including handmade props in plaster and wood, and industrially manufactured items like mirrors, rods, and aluminium siding… The resulting images are pleasurably disorienting.
—Serena Qiu, Art in America

I first asked Kasten to describe her studio to me… her account arrived at a black box—a “stage” and photographic studio simultaneously… It is there that her material selections become actors and the camera collapses space, magnifying subtle gestures into epic dramas where light meets surface.
—Leslie Hewitt, BOMB

*Barbara Kasten: Stages*, installation view (2015)

Kasten’s work, with its absence of narrative and precisely staged constructs built for the camera, situates her right in the midst of these new contemporaries, artists such as Kate Steciw, Elad Lassry, Sam Falls, Eileen Quinlan, Jessica Eaton, Lucas Blalock and many others.
—Natalie Hegert, MutualArt and Huffington Post

In Kasten’s more recent works, the large-scale cinematic installations such as Scenes(2013), the shimmering, moving gleam reflects off the screens and geometric shapes. Given a knowledge of Kasten’s earlier work, the viewer experiences her photographs coming to life in these moving multi-media works.
—Niamh Coglan, Aesthetica

This exhibition focuses on selections from major bodies of work spanning the 1970s to the present. It brings together and contextualizes for the first time Kasten’s earliest fiber sculptures, mixed media works, cyanotype prints, photographic series, and forays into set design, alongside archival material and select video documentation.
Mousse Magazine blog

*Barbara Kasten: Stages*, installation view (2015)

From a distance, the curvilinear roof and concrete structure didn’t look like any building I had ever seen before. As I walked into the cool quiet of the interior, swatches of color floated in space, changing shape as they landed on surfaces of different textures… It was a formative moment, and the interplay of light, color, and geometry and Ronchamp was a key inspiration as I developed my own artistic vocabulary.
—Barbara Kasten, Art in America

Architecture is about creating an environment that we respond to, that we connect with, and that affects us in some emotional way. Axis, 2015, incorporates the architecture of a thirty-foot-high corner in one of ICA’s galleries. The architecture becomes an integral element of the video as it is displaced and transformed into other objects.
—Barbara Kasten, as told to Andrianna Campbell, Artforum

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