Joy Curtis’s sculptures incorporate details from the generic architectural spaces of modern life. In some works, readymade moldings that trim ceilings, floors, doors and elevator banks are turned structural and freestanding through bonding, bending and stacking. The resulting sculptures occupy a space between architecture and object, and begin to generate a formal delineation between the two. This is further heightened by heavy layers of paint, sanded and chipped to reveal spectrums of color beneath, and evoking symbolic signs of temporal wear and tear. The color palette of each work is derived from specific settings both natural and man-made, such as mineral formations and subway platform columns.
In other sculptures, Curtis has chosen to take cast impressions of door jambs and window frames directly from their original settings by making plaster and fiberglass molds in situ. She then reconstructs these facsimiles in abstracted totems, painting the surfaces with sumi ink and light washes of paint. The resulting fresco-like fragments reflect an archeological mythology, setting distance between their origins in banal offices and hallways and pointing to the more subtle psychological effects of spaces that we inhabit.