Martin Creed Ranges from Scatalogical to Magical at the Park Avenue Armory

The Armory’s 55,000-square-foot central room must make artists who are commissioned to create work there break out in night sweats. Creed’s principal intervention in it, Shutters Opening and Closing (2016), is sure to make them jealous.

The darkened hall is nearly empty. The rolling garage door at the back of the space, which looks out onto Lexington Avenue, periodically opens for a few seconds and then closes. This simple act turns the everyday life outside, the passing cars and pedestrians, into a high-definition filmic study on the enchantment that can be found in the banal.

Though not as wondrous as the drill hall garage door, Half the Air in a Given Space (2015) is already tearing up Instagram. Fifty percent of the volume of one of the Armory’s galleries is taken up by large, white balloons; visitors are invited to walk through, and are at times completely submerged. “Every time you go to a gallery, it’s full of air,” Creed has said, and this idea is given sculptural form here. This piece will no doubt make major box office for the Armory.

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