Judith Page, January 30 (Three O’Clock), 2009. Tar Gel and mixed media, 3 x 14 x 14 in.

Judith Page

New York

Lesley Heller Workspace

At once familiar and strange, disturbing yet comforting, Judith Page’s sculptures recycle personal items into enticing assemblages that probe the slippage between dreams and experience, memory and time. Rather than reworking Surrealist obsession, however, these objects, covered with a viscous medium aptly titled Tar Gel and hanging from the ceiling, mounted on the wall, and scattered across the gallery floor as if by chance, disrupt sentimentality for a more abject counter-discourse—one that colludes with the political in a quest for meaning.

At the entrance to the gallery, a pair of dog-faced slippers covered with a molten layer of black Tar Gel set the stage. While the title, January 30 (Three O’Clock), suggests a diary entry, the slippers could have been one of many discarded pairs of shoes from the street outside this Lower East Side gallery. The opposite wall held the remnant of another dated memory, a dangling foot (actually a wooden shoe form) covered in pink Tar Gel, with nails attached to the sole. June 28 (Aerator), an emblem of lack, severed from the body and without function like the emptied-out, barely sustainable, and no longer useful slippers at the door, became the means for taking the night walk of the exhibition’s title…see the entire review in the print version of September’s magazine.