On Saturday I went to the gallery, Capricious 88, on the Lower East Side in New York City. I saw the Cajsa Von Zeipel exhibition called Pony Tails. Cajsa Von Zeipel is a Swedish sculptor who makes massive plaster sculptures of bony figures. The figures represent teenage culture and fashion. Von Zeipel shows the effect of pop culture on teenage girls. She captures a world that is elusive, sometimes self-destructive, and also rebellious.
The characters are powerful and surreal. Their bodies become off-putting due to their spindly, exaggerated and suffering nature. Seeing them moved me so much; I wanted to feed the sculptures food. The female characters wear miniskirts, fishnets, and sometimes just a crop-top. The sculptures tower over you, lifted high by their huge, heavy platform shoes. All the girls wear their hair in slicked back ponytails–another reference to youth. But somehow this hairstyle on these larger than life heads create an inhuman appearance and the girls seem more like aliens. In addition, juxtaposing these large heads, and barely balancing them on these frail bodies, reminds the viewer of girls suffering from anorexia. You have to ask yourself, is this really “beauty”?
There were two sculptures that stood out. One was of a man with long hair staring troublingly at his own reflection. This piece captured the idea of vanity. The mirror is slightly contorted, which made me think about my own reflection. We all see ourselves differently, what he may see in the mirror my be different from what I see. Everything is up to each person’s own interpretation. The second sculpture was of two girls fighting each other. One girl is straddling the other from behind while pulling her hair, and the other is leaning over looking up. The girl being attacked seems unconcerned and submissive. It reminded me of social hierarchy, and the idea of bending down, or submitting, to be accepted. Sometimes relationships are not equal.
If afterwards you feel like eating, you may enjoy some inexpensive dumplings, at one of the two best spots – Prosperity Dumpling(46 Eldridge St.) or Vanessa’s Dumpling House(118A Eldridge). Both just a few steps away from the gallery.
Exhibit Open through November 2, 2014
Wednesday – Sunday 12 Noon to 6:00PM
88 Eldridge Street, 5th Fl
B, D Train to “Grand” or F Train to “Delancey”