Eli Gur Arie, Dog, 2016. Polymer casts and layered acrylic paints, 120 x 75 x 60 cm.

Eli Gur Arie

Tel Aviv

Tel Aviv Museum of Art

Hairless albino squirrels, darting here and there across a crowded floor or nibbling on quasi-scientific paraphernalia, formed a visual connection across the startling installations, freestanding assemblages, and zany reliefs in Eli Gur Arie’s recent exhibition “Growth Engines.” These sinister rodents, together with robotic metallic dogs, reflect the artist’s unrelenting interest in genetic engineering and post-apocalyptic life; in this show, they played an unsettling role in an alarming, yet visually gratifying drama. V-Day, an elevated insect-figure whose vertical gesture and scale recall the celebrated Winged Victory of Samothrace, transforms into empty elegance as inert gossamer wings rise above a violet-turquoise techno-face surrounded by red tentacles. Jammed into a patch of ersatz earth and rock salt sprouting sheaves of wild wheat, this pseudodeity was engineered as a 21stcentury aesthetic replacement for Hellenistic splendor. Realistically or symbolically modeled predators, domesticated animals, and bugs are central to Gur Arie’s work, whereas human forms are absent, replaced by “things” associated with human activity—weapons, parachutes, shovels, mortar shells, pods, floral arrangements, and equipment for space travel. …see the entire review in the print version of May’s Sculpture magazine.