Timothy Taylor Menu
The Armory Show
The Armory Show, 710 September 2023, New York

Timothy Taylor is pleased to feature new and recent works by Kiki Smith and Chris Martin at The Armory Show in September 2023. These two artists, both born in 1954, have created distinct and iconic bodies of work over the course of four decades, yet their trajectories share compelling affinities. Both developed their practices in the vibrant artistic context of New York's Lower East Side during the 1970's and 80s, and later gravitated toward the slower rhythms of rural upstate New York. In this year’s edition of the fair, the booth will highlight a selection of wall works, sculptures, and works on paper spanning Smith's career, together with Martin's recent abstract paintings. Linked by an interest in transcending the limitations of the body to wander ever deeper into the strange and the cosmic, they reveal a shared understanding of the natural world as a site of transformation.

In this presentation, Smith’s introspective, delicate prints and cast metal sculptures are set into relief by Martin’s exuberantly gestural, glittering paeans to landscape painting. In the artists’ hands, nature is cast as a subject beyond our rational understanding: Smith’s sculptures and works on paper delve into the cycles of life, with their attendant stages of metamorphosis, death, and rebirth, while Martin approaches his abstracted landscapes with a sensibility equally attuned to the mystical and deeply empathetic to the vibrations of the living world.

Martin has observed of the act of painting, “The reality that we can touch in painting is that we really don’t have a fixed self.” His canvases present a world untethered to fixed representation and instead defined by movement. Working in acrylic, which he often enhances with sequins and glitter, he paints the natural world around him. Many of Martin’s recent paintings are inspired by his observations of the pastoral landscape outside his Catskills studio. Sunlight on Haynes Ridge (2023) captures the feeling of summiting a trail where the hillside drops away and blue sky comes into view, and Color-Field-inspired works like Good Morning (2023) and Singing (2023) hum with the frenetic assonance of nature.

Smith, meanwhile, depicts fauna—both human and beast—in works that draw from the narrative tropes of classical mythology and folklore. Anchoring the booth, Smith’s wall sculpture Messenger (2008) presents a cast-metal bird breaking free from the crosshairs of an aluminum nexus. This act of liberation galvanizes the metallic flurry in nearby Quiver (2018), in which glinting particles radiate out of a nearly life-size bronze woman, attesting to the transformational power of nature. In both wall sculptures, Smith leads us to consider the esoteric undercurrent of our earthly realm.


Messenger, 2008, Cast aluminum, white gold and gold leaf
Quiver, 2018, Bronze, Edition of 3
Sorcery (Whole Set), 2019, Intaglio in 2 colours, Edition of 13
Untitled, 2023, Acrylic and oil paint on gessoed canvas
Good Morning, 2023, Acrylic, gel medium, sequins, and glitter on aluminium foil
Hot Afternoon, 20222023, Acrylic. Glitter, sequins, collage, oil on gessoed canvas
The Armory Show – Timothy Taylor