Sculptor Rose Nestler’s Gymnasia Fantasia
Art Business

Sculptor Rose Nestler’s Gymnasia Fantasia

Photo: Rose Nestler, Gynmasia (2018), video still. Image by Robin Stein. Courtesy of BRIC and the artist. In her solo exhibition “Gymnasia,” opening at BRIC on November 29, sculptor Rose Nestler ruminates on the ancient gymnasium and its progeny: wrestling, gym class, the smugly disciplined CrossFit bro, possibly even toxic masculinity. Walking into Nestler’s snug studio space in the Brooklyn Army Terminal, I’m greeted by oversize twin amphorae — eight-foot-tall riffs on the iconic vessels given as trophies to athletes in ancient Athens. Nestler’s trophies, though impossibly large and imposing, are also soft and pliable, rendered as giant hollow tubes of spandex, neoprene, and athletic mesh. Neon green and orange figures splay across them, diving, stretching, and flexing in a sea of black. Impossible for Nestler to move on her own, the hulking amphorae nearly overwhelm her studio, a white cubicle bedecked with sketches, shelves of ceramic sports bras and smaller fabric forms, and a wall-mounted TV for Nestler’s extensive video work. Unsurprisingly, Nestler was something of a teenage jock, a Seattle-area rower who relished the sound of her coach barking through a bullhorn, the blood crusting her legs after a rough practice — that is, being treated like […]

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