A feeling of excited anticipation always washes over us when we push open the heavy, unmarked steel door at the Gladstone Gallery on 21st Street. The last few shows have taken our breath away with epic whole gallery installations. Who could forget the entire gallery being taken over by artist Thomas Hirshorn’s Costa Concordia vision of the interior of the doomed cruise ship or the giant vat of pouring molten liquid by Miraslaw Balka.
The current show by Mexican artist Damián Ortega doesn’t disappoint. Ortega has hung the vast main gallery space with an installation composed of 25 twisted steel sculptures which hang from the ceiling in grid-like rows. To us they look like ancient snakes, but when you look at the ground beneath them, spotlights cast a shadow in the shape of letters of the alphabet. The show continues on the galleries second floor with further strong steel sculptural pieces.Damián Ortega. Gladstone Gallery. 530 West 21st Street. NY. NY. 10011. Tel: 212 206 9300. closes October 26th, 2013