Roy McMakin "Two Chairs, Two Chests of Drawers, Two Pieces of Fabric, and Two Tables" at Ambach and Rice, Los Angeles, California

Throughout his career as artist, furniture designer and architect, McMakin has challenged notions of domesticity, distorting the intersection between art and design with quiet subversion.  McMakin’s works are the product of discreet decisions and are executed with the utmost attention to detail. Equal consideration is devoted to concept, construction and finish resulting in objects that evoke loss and vulnerability despite their seemingly austere presence.

In 4 Photographs of 4 Sides of a Green Chest of Drawers (cameras the same distance from each side) With Mike, Myself and Another Green Chest, McMakin constructs a fractured still life that appears conversely animate and inert. In four separate photographs the viewer experiences the scene from all sides simultaneously, transcending the limits of visual perception. The composition portrays McMakin and his partner concealed behind a chest of drawers.  The chest ostensibly functions as façade and shelter, a humble parable that subsumes the lives of objects and individuals.

Numerous works in the exhibit illustrate McMakin’s penchant for scouring yard sales and flea markets, an activity he has cherished since childhood.  Objects and furniture are revitalized and rendered solitary with precise composite photography, paint and sculptural intervention. An antique blue four-drawer dresser is horizontally mounted to the wall, incased in an immaculate fabricated wood form that consumes the negative space. This formal disorientation compounds intimacy with Minimalism, an unlikely correlation that feels utterly natural through McMakin’s guise.
Roy McMakin is an interdisciplinary artist, furniture designer and architect. He operates and oversees his furniture shop Domestic Furniture, and his architectural firm Domestic Architecture in Seattle, WA. His first monographic survey entitled Roy McMakin: When is a chair not a chair? was recently published by Rizzoli Press. Recent solo exhibitions include Behind What it’s in Front Of: Paintings by John McLaughlin Sculptures and Videos by Roy McMakin, Quint Contemporary Art, San Diego, CA, and In and On, Lora Reynolds Gallery, Austin, TX. Upcoming exhibits include Middle, a solo exhibition of new works at The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, Ridgefield, CT, and Figuring Color, a group exhibition at the ICA, Boston, MA. McMakin’s work can be found in numerous national and international museum collections.

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