- Source: Hyperallergic
- Author: Adina Glickstein
- Date: December 22, 2020
- Format: Digital
Poking Holes in the Veneer of Our Social Media Selves
At Essex Street, Torey Thornton broaches the broader issues of our image-saturated age, considering who (and what) our self-styling ultimately serves.
The slippage between self-expression and commodification, familiar to anyone who has spent a few too many hours gazing dead-eyed and alienated at their own Instagram profile (couldn’t be me!) is one salient subject of exploration in Torey Thornton’s Does productivity know what it’s named, maybe it calls itself identity?, on view at Essex Street through January 9, 2021.
There’s a tension between the mundane or even obvious quality of certain materials that Thornton employs — mattresses, wooden doors, rocks — and their abstracted deployment, an implicit humor in their refusal to function as expected. Scrambling familiar visual references, works like “Every Good Body Does Fine (Membrane between granular pearl dive access)” and “What Is Sexuality, Is The Scale Infinite Similar To A Line (new modes of press and chromakey) (TT-ES-00022),” both 2020, attempt to jam the circuit of value-extraction with their calculated obscurity, playfully posing a point of exit from the nightmare of perpetual entrepreneurship of the self.
Torey Thornton: Does productivity know what it’s named, maybe it calls itself identity? continues through January 9, 2021 at Essex Street (55 Hester Street, Lower East Side, Manhattan).