The Female Gaze
While in New York I ventured into an art gallery in the Meatpacking District (the Leo Kesting Gallery). There were a lot of interesting pieces on display, more striking and unique than mediocre. Ray Sell’s work stood out the most though; assemblage post-modernist work which observes media representation of the male. Sell focuses on the development of the male archetype over the last 60 years. He received critical acclaim from the June 2008 issues of Art Cards and the December 2007 Art Basel Review in the Economist.
I left New York with Watching the Clock (below): one of his more subtle pieces of a man looking down, in front of a framed work filled with the actual mechanics from within a clock. The man is shackled with a pocket watch. Overhead a woman’s eyes stare straight ahead.
Sell takes media images of men and scrambles them collage-style to reveal the underlying truths behind what it truly means to “be a man.” Interestingly he portrays not just men’s obsessions with action films, guns, war, and sassy lucious women but the expectations placed on men to be heroes.