Laura Schnitger, Fina, 1996.
the artnet hit list
by John Mendelsohn

lara schnitger
at anton kern gallery

Nov. 2 - 23, 1996

The artist transforms herself in 30 "sculpture skits" in the ten-minute video, Goose Bumps, by distorting her face with clear tape, filling her mouth and eye sockets with clay, twisting her lips on a glass dish, and getting snagged by a finger up her nose. In Lara Schnitger's hands the grotesque is not awful, but weirdly playful. This spirit continues in the "Face Fugues," a series of symmetrical photocollages in which multiple fingers make human faces into monsters. The Dutch artist continues her speculative biology with Fina, a room-sized sculpture, vaguely in the shape of a sea urchin. This creature's soft body is thin white plastic form-fitted like loose clothing over a skeleton of black polyethylene strips stretched tight from the surrounding walls, an ephemeral construction with the feeling of a rather buoyant gathering of phantom protoplasm. Accompanying Fina (to be replaced by a new piece on Nov. 26) is Delicate Dude, an abstract standing figure in profile made of papier mache, nine feet tall and one inch thick, like a slice from a body for the study of physiology. He is featureless except for his brain which is hinged ajar-- apparently keeping an open mind.

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