Local Art: Hammer With Oversize Handle

A sustainable — and substantial — sculpture by Philadelphia’s Dufala Brothers

Brothers Steven and Billy Blaise Dufala have made a (family) name for themselves by creating art that’s both patently absurd and patentably practical. The first hammer sculpture in their current series, 20 inches tall, a foot wide and five inches deep, is today’s popular do-it-yourself ethos writ — and carved — large. Given its subject, title and masculine makers, the brothers’ Hammer could be taken as a totem to machismo. But is it? The handle isn’t so much swollen as statuesque, suggesting a woman’s torso. This marriage of male and female makes for a singularly striking take on what is ordinarily a most mundane tool. Here, though, an elegantly crafted, beautifully proportioned pairing of wood and metal is a union of opposites that reminds us of every day’s opportunities for creativity and humor.  Collaborative solo exhibition in March at Fleisher/Ollman Gallery.