A phalanx of long-limbed nude figures occupy Hauser & Wirth’s cavernous Chelsea gallery, recent works by Ida Applebroog that evoke both the coolly digital and tenderly handmade. Titled “The Ethics of Desire,” the Amazonian-scaled males and females are digitally printed on Mylar and then painted. The translucent sheets of paper hang from the ceiling, suggesting a runway without clothes. The figures seem to be strutting or posing, drawn in straightforward outlines but with splashes or stains of color. They sport specific footwear, including tube socks, brogues and stilettos, or unexpected accessories, such as a Christian cross or handcuffs. Applebroog has mined gender and the body for decades, and continues to explore the potential of the human form. Her strapping yet vulnerable male figures take center stage this time around.
Pictured: Installation view of “Ida Applebroog: The Ethics of Desire”; at Hauser & Wirth New York, 18th Street, 2015. Photo Abby Robinson. Courtesy the artist and Hauser & Wirth.