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Room East

A New Gallery on the Lower East Side

I was recently walking down Orchard Street and happily stumbled upon Room East, a new gallery in the heart of the original LES gallery district (Miguel Abreu is basically across the street). Room East’s inaugural exhibition, Ruins in Reverse, is a collection of artists who picked up where Robert Smithson and Gordon Matta-Clark left off.  


Emily Henretta, Material Database 2011

But, unlike Smithson, who typically produced larger scale land works, the exhibition focuses on a more orderly urban and contemporary art decay.  Although I admire the curators concept and many of the artists’ pieces, the show seemed slightly too clean for an exhibition on ruin.  I was hoping to find a bit more red dirt lying on the beautifully renovated floors. Instead, I found little hints of what might have been red fungus or rust on a piece by Erik Lindman. Titled Christian Hair Shirt, it is a nicely compact and balanced canvas intent on the ruin of traditional materials and aesthetics.


Erik Lindman, Christian Hair Shirt 2011 & Wyatt Kahn, Wall Work 2011

The show also includes pieces by Erin Shirreff, whose ability to work in sculpture, photography, and video seamlessly has always caught my eye. In her writings, I found the following Paul Bowles quote from The Sheltering Sky:

"We get to think of life as an inexhaustible well, yet everything happens only a certain number of times, and a very small number, really…. How many more times will you watch the full moon rise? Perhaps twenty.  And yet it all seems limitless."

In my opinion, Room East is off to a lovely start. I’m looking forward to seeing their trajectory unfold.


David Brooks, 3 Dune Formations 2012 & Erin Shirreff, Untitled 2011

Room East
41 Orchard Street
New York, NY 10002

More info can be found here: { www.roomeast.com }

Posted 2 years ago and has 3 notes
#Room East #Exhibition Review #Sylvia Hardy #Erin Shirreff