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Xavier Hufkens

—​

St-Georges

Sterling Ruby, Robert Mapplethorpe Sterling Ruby / Robert Mapplethorpe

Sterling Ruby, Robert Mapplethorpe Sterling Ruby / Robert Mapplethorpe
Selected works Installation views

Xavier Hufkens is pleased to present the exhibition, Sterling Ruby / Robert Mapplethorpe. For his first solo exhibition at the gallery, Sterling Ruby engages with the photography of Robert Mapplethorpe. The artist visited the Robert Mapplethorpe Foundation in New York to personally select the photographs. Ruby will present a new body of works, including a suite of collages, ceramics, and poured urethane sculptures. In this installation, Ruby uses the Mapplethorpe photographs as another element in his assemblage.

Originally attracted to Mapplethorpe’s subject matter, marginal subcultures, the flowers and still lives, Ruby began to ask a more complicated set of questions. Can one have a conversation with an artist who is no longer living? What are the natures of autobiography and biography? Why is psychoanalyzing Robert Mapplethorpe so compelling? Did he seek to distance himself from his subjects? Was Robert Mapplethorpe’s formalism a mask intended to hide his subjectivity, which he would then allow us to see?

Ruby’s work strives towards a transgression of fixed identities. His Transcompositional collages incorporate images of pre-operative and post-operative transsexuals and splatterings of nail varnish on a mirrored background. Although traversing similar ground to Mapplethorpe, the relationship of Sterling Ruby with his subject matter is far from clear. He often exploits abject or marginalized subject matter to breach preformed dichotomies such as liberation and repression, conformity and marginality, passivity and aggression. The inclusion of Robert Mapplethorpe’s works into this massive installation seeks to open up new and irrational readings of the work of Sterling Ruby and the work of Robert Mapplethorpe.

Sterling Ruby (1972) lives and works in Los Angeles, California. His solo exhibitions include The Masturbators at Foxy Production, New York (2009), Supermax 2008 at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (2008), CHRONat the Drawing Center, New York (2008) and Grid Ripper,Galleria d’arte Moderna e Contemporanea, Bergamo, Italy (2008). Recent group exhibitions include New Photography,Museum of Modern Art, New York (2009), Beaufort 03. Art by the Sea, Ostend, Belgium (2009), New York Minute, Depart Foundation, Macro Future Museum, Rome, Italy (2009), the Moscow Biennial (2007), the California Biennial (2006) and Red Eye: LA Artists at the Rubell Family Collection, Miami (2006).

Related exhibitions

Selected works

Related artworks

    Sterling Ruby

    Transcompositional/Bricks, 2009

    nail polish and collage on mirror acrylic
    126.9 x 248.5 cm, 50 x 97 7/8 in.

    Sterling Ruby

    Basin Theology I, 2009

    ceramic
    68.6 x 15.2 x 63.5 cm, 27 x 6 x 25 in.

    Sterling Ruby

    Moonstalker, 2009

    ceramic
    24.1 x 61 x 59.7 cm, 9 1/2 x 24 x 23 1/2 in.

    Robert Mapplethorpe

    Horse # 6, 1982

    silver gelatin print
    50.8 x 40.6 cm, 20 x 16 in.

    Robert Mapplethorpe

    Lisa Lyon, 1982

    silver gelatin print
    40.6 x 50.8 cm, 16 x 20 in.

    Robert Mapplethorpe

    Raymond, 1984

    silver gelatin print
    40.6 x 50.8 cm, 16 x 20 in.

    Robert Mapplethorpe

    Lisa Lyon, 1982

    silver gelatin print
    50.8 x 40.6 cm, 20 x 16 in.

    Robert Mapplethorpe

    Self Portrait, 1983

    silver gelatin print
    40.6 x 50.8 cm, 16 x 20 in.

    Robert Mapplethorpe

    Frank Diaz, 1979

    silver gelatin print
    50.8 x 40.6 cm, 20 x 16 in.

    Sterling Ruby

    Red Uniform, 2009

    urethane, bondo, steel, formica and wood
    295 x 58.4 x 58.4 cm, 116 1/8 x 23 x 23 in.

    Sterling Ruby

    Transcompositional/Federline, 2009

    nail polish and collage on mirror acrylic
    125.5 x 127 cm, 49 3/8 x 50 in.

    Robert Mapplethorpe

    Gerard, 1981

    silver gelatin print
    40.6 x 50.8 cm, 16 x 20 in.

    Sterling Ruby

    Head Worker Reconfigured, 2008

    bronze
    23.5 x 50.8 x 44.5 cm, 9 1/4 x 20 x 17 1/2 in.

    Sterling Ruby

    Transcompositional/Braces, 2009

    nail polish and collage on mirror acrylic
    126.8 x 249.8 cm, 49 7/8 x 98 3/8 in.

    Sterling Ruby

    Transcompositional/Linoleum Floor, 2009

    nail polish and collage on mirror acrylic
    122.6 x 249.8 cm, 48 1/4 x 98 3/8 in.

    Sterling Ruby

    Mr. Deep Bite, 2009

    ceramic
    45.1 x 55.9 x 69.9 cm, 17 3/4 x 22 x 27 1/2 in.

    Sterling Ruby

    Transcompositional/Christmas Tree, 2009

    nail polish and collage on mirror acrylic
    124 x 245.8 cm, 48 7/8 x 96 3/4 in.

    Sterling Ruby

    Transcompositional/Floral Print Dress, 2009

    nail polish and collage on mirror acrylic
    124.4 x 246.4 cm, 49 x 97 in.

    Sterling Ruby

    The Tripper, 2009

    ceramic
    14 x 71 x 51 cm, 5 1/2 x 28 x 20 1/8 in.

    Robert Mapplethorpe

    Self Portrait, 1980

    gelatin silver print
    40.6 x 50.8 cm, 16 x 20 in.

    Robert Mapplethorpe

    Mountain, 1983

    silver gelatin print
    50.8 x 40.6 cm, 20 x 16 in.

    Robert Mapplethorpe

    Mountain, 1983

    silver gelatin print
    50.8 x 40.6 cm, 20 x 16 in.

    Robert Mapplethorpe

    Bread, 1979

    silver gelatin print
    50.8 x 40.6 cm, 20 x 16 in.

    Robert Mapplethorpe

    Veronica Vera, 1982

    silver gelatin print
    50.8 x 40.6 cm, 20 x 16 in.

    Robert Mapplethorpe

    Ice bucket and spoon, 1987

    silver gelatin print
    60.9 x 50.8 cm, 24 x 20 in.

    Robert Mapplethorpe

    Lisa Lyon, 1986

    silver gelatin print
    60.9 x 50.8 cm, 24 x 20 in.

    Sterling Ruby

    Transcompositional/Diamonds, 2009

    nail polish and collage on mirror paper
    55 x 38.5 cm, 21 5/8 x 15 1/8 in.

    Sterling Ruby

    Transcompositional/Lip Liner, 2009

    nail polish and collage on mirror paper
    55 x 41 cm, 21 5/8 x 16 1/8 in.

    Sterling Ruby

    Transcompositional/California, 2009

    nail polish and collage on mirror paper
    55 x 39.6 cm, 21 5/8 x 15 5/8 in.

    Sterling Ruby

    Transcompositional/Nightclub Red, 2009

    nail polish and collage on mirror paper
    55 x 50.5 cm, 21 5/8 x 19 7/8 in.

    Sterling Ruby

    Transcompositional/Fur + Tattoo, 2009

    nail polish and collage on mirror paper
    44.3 x 51.2 cm, 17 1/2 x 20 1/8 in.

    Robert Mapplethorpe

    Watermelon with knife, 1985

    silver gelatin print
    50.8 x 40.6 cm, 20 x 16 in.

    Sterling Ruby

    Transcompositional/Witches of Eastwick, 2009

    nail polish and collage on mirror acrylic
    127.7 x 127.7 cm, 50 1/4 x 50 1/4 in.

    Sterling Ruby

    ACTS/HORS GREEN + RED, 2009

    formica, wood, spray paint and 2 urethane blocks
    107.7 x 226 x 121.8 cm, 42 3/8 x 89 x 48 in.

    Robert Mapplethorpe

    Rose with smoke, 1985

    silver gelatin print
    50.8 x 40.6 cm, 20 x 16 in.

    Robert Mapplethorpe

    Rose, 1989

    dye transfer (VPD)
    76.2 x 60.9 cm, 30 x 24 in.

    Sterling Ruby

    Alabaster SR09-02, 2009

    acrylic
    126.5 x 246 cm, 49 3/4 x 96 7/8 in.

    Sterling Ruby

    Alabaster SR09-01, 2009

    acrylic
    131.5 x 132.1 cm, 51 3/4 x 52 in.

    Robert Mapplethorpe

    Texas Gallery, 1980

    silver gelatin print
    50.8 x 40.6 cm, 20 x 16 in.

    Robert Mapplethorpe

    Richard (bloody cock), 1978

    silver gelatin print
    50.8 x 40.6 cm, 20 x 16 in.

    Robert Mapplethorpe

    Arnold Schwarzenegger, 1976

    silver gelatin print
    50.8 x 40.6 cm, 20 x 16 in.

    Sterling Ruby

    ACTS/Bounty Hunta, 2009

    formica, wood, spray paint and 2 urethane blocks
    108 x 221 x 121.7 cm, 42 1/2 x 87 x 47 7/8 in.

    Robert Mapplethorpe

    Cedric, 1983

    silver gelatin print
    50.8 x 40.6 cm, 20 x 16 in.

    Robert Mapplethorpe

    Helmut, 1978

    silver gelatin print
    50.8 x 40.6 cm, 20 x 16 in.

    Robert Mapplethorpe

    Cock, 1981

    silver gelatin print
    40.6 x 50.8 cm, 16 x 20 in.

    Robert Mapplethorpe

    Leather Crotch, 1980

    silver gelatin print
    50.8 x 40.6 cm, 20 x 16 in.

    Robert Mapplethorpe

    Self portrait, 1981

    silver gelatin print
    50.8 x 40.6 cm, 20 x 16 in.

    Robert Mapplethorpe

    Nick Marden, 1980

    silver gelatin print
    40.6 x 50.8 cm, 16 x 20 in.

    Robert Mapplethorpe

    Cynthia Slater, 1980

    silver gelatin print
    50.8 x 40.6 cm, 20 x 16 in.

    Robert Mapplethorpe

    Ramiros, 1979

    silver gelatin print
    50.8 x 40.6 cm, 20 x 16 in.

    Robert Mapplethorpe

    Larry and Bobby Kissing, 1979

    silver gelatin print
    40.6 x 50.8 cm, 16 x 20 in.

    Sterling Ruby

    Cry Later, 2009

    formica, wood, spray paint
    183 x 325 x 243.5 cm, 72 x 127 15/16 x 95 13/16 in.

    Robert Mapplethorpe

    Jack Walls, 1983

    silver gelatin print
    50.8 x 40.6 cm, 20 x 16 in.

    Robert Mapplethorpe

    Dennis Speight, 1983

    silver gelatin print
    50.8 x 40.6 cm, 20 x 16 in.

    Sterling Ruby

    Headless Dick/Mapplethorpe, 2009

    wood, spray paint
    390 x 443 x 122 cm, 153 1/2 x 174 3/8 x 48 in.

    Sterling Ruby

    Monument Stalagmite/Visine Dream, 2009

    PVC pipe, foam, urethane, wood, spray paint and formica
    490.2 x 121.9 x 101.6 cm, 193 x 48 x 40 in.

    Sterling Ruby

    Monument Stalagmite/Adultism Pissing, 2009

    PVC pipe, foam, urethane, wood, spray paint and formica
    528.3 x 101.6 x 139.7 cm, 208 x 40 x 55 in.

    Robert Mapplethorpe

    Untitled (Vintage/Unique), 1983

    felt, formica, plexi
    93 x 93.6 x 4.8 cm, 36 5/8 x 36 7/8 x 1 7/8 in.

Installation views