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Stephen Lack, 2006
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by Walter Robinson

"A man who knows his proverbs can’t be all bad," they say in the Audrey Tatou starrer Amélie (2001), currently in heavy rotation on a Manhattan cable channel. This thought came to mind at Joseph Kosuth’s recent installation at Sean Kelly Gallery, which turned the gallery into a literal maze of scholarship and allusion, with about 20 rooms and passages whose black walls were lined with 195 bon mots, aphorisms, maxims, quips and quotations, painted in a variety of typefaces, some done in neon. Titled "a labyrinth into which I can venture," a phrase used by Michel Foucault in The Archeology of Knowledge to describe his writing, Kosuth’s installation takes the pleasure of ideas and turns it into one big art object.