Casanova is delighted to present Lazy Bones, British artist Toby Christian’s second solo in Brazil. Comprising a series of new stone carvings on display at the gallery, and a public, outdoor text installation in the Jardim district, the exhibition extends the dynamic and reciprocal nature between Christian’s writing and sculpture.
The title of the exhibition, Lazy Bones, is taken from the first commercially successful television remote control manufactured in 1950 by the Zenith Radio Corporation, designed to silence ads or change the channel. It could control the ‘Byron’ TV Console, whose ‘reflection-proof’ screen was ‘wider than a newspaper page’ and housed in an ‘eighteenth century cabinet in rich mahogany veneers’. The device itself, resembling a golden grenade, was tethered to the console via a long trailing cable, a trip hazard that eventually prompted a wireless solution.
Christian’s new stone sculptures consider the formal and ergonomic potentials for mass- produced remote devices. Continuing an ongoing range of small-scale works (2015-) that address objects designed to fit our hands and bodies, these mute sculptures, whose pliable functions are removed, are sites for the imagination of new transmissions and choreographies for the hand. With economy and nuance, these works resonate with Christian’s earlier Appendages series (2008-), where pointing marble fingers appear detached from their conducting corpus.
Where ergonomics asserts a prevailing imminence of the labouring body, here the figure of the remote becomes the site of deferment, discontent, mining, uncertainty, hopping, extraction, change, hogging, flicking, switching, boredom, bedtime. In Christian’s typically pared down style, these three stone sculptures wall-mounted on blank coloured A3 paper each suggest their own unique station. Zeta Reticulans casts a covert, extra-terrestrial face, while the bust battery compartment of AA Battery exposes raw Carrara marble. In contrasting limestone, Selling Sunset (Old Sky), remodels a Sky TV remote as a concept sketch for an item of clothing.
A group of nine distributed tear-off flyers are displayed in the local district around the gallery.
In separate locations, each poster advertises an excerpt taken from the artist’s published and unpublished writings from the last decade, attached to walls, lamp posts and any available space. These short, potent, abstracted extracts sell fragments of descriptions and glimpses of objects, to be depleted by the public, tearing text from the foot of each page.
With words taken home, stashed in wallets, or cast onto the pavement as confetti, these torn, depleted papers also recall Christian’s contribution to the Stick Stamp Fly group exhibition, Gasworks, London (2007) where a single torn yellow poster corner left a message to the imagination.
Toby Christian (born 1983, Boston, Lincolnshire) lives and works in London. Recent solo exhibitions and performances include Repeller with Good Gear, for StudioAudio, a commission by AICA-UK and PEER, premiering on Resonance FM (2020), London; Burners, Alessandro Albanese, Milan (2019); Old School New Body, Celine, Glasgow (2019); Trippy Scroller, PEER, London, (2018); The News, Swimming Pool, Sofia, curated by David Dale, Glasgow (2017); and Railing, Whitechapel Gallery, London (2017). His forthcoming book Commuters is published by Koenig Books in 2021, and features an introductory essay by Chris Fite-Wassilak. His books Measures (2013) and Collar (2017) are also published by Koenig Books. He is Lecturer in Fine Art at Central Saint Martins, University of the Arts, London.
Exhibition: ‘Lazy Bones’ de Toby Christian.
Opening: 18 e 19 junho 2021
From 22nd June to 24th July 2021
Tuesday to Friday, noon to 19pm
Saturday, from 11am to 18pm
Alameda Lorena 1257, house 4 – Jardim Paulista, São Paulo.