This season, in partnership with ARTS.BLACK, ArtSlant is publishing a series of essays on security, guards, labor, and privilege in museum spaces. Find the first installment and an introduction to the series here.
I’d be lying if I said that I’ve always held a deep respect for museum guards. That I’ve reflected deeply on those who stand and sit for hours on end, thanklessly serving as the human buffers between the world’s greatest treasures and greasy fingers or forbidden... [more]
The artist LaTurbo Avedon may be a computer-created avatar but she is very much alive. Her identity has been created through very real experiences and interactions over numerous websites, social platforms, and gaming consoles. The notion that there is a “real” person behind the avatar becomes increasingly meaningless as the division between all of our online and IRL identities blur and dissipate.
LaTurbo Avedon’s work partly explores her personal existence as a physical/digital e... [more]
And to everyone, who shares my views, I would say that we need to rethink our conception of the animal instinct of fear. Through this instinct, the power apparatus controls us and takes away our lives.
Thus wrote Petr Pavlensky, the so-called "mind, balls and conscience" of Putin's Russia in his December 15, 2015 letter from Butyrskaya Prison to a Radio Svoboda journalist. Pavlensky was detained after his November 9, 2015 aktsiya, titled "Threat," which consisted of lighting the... [more]
Now an accomplished pre-teen, VOLTA returns this week for its twelfth year in the Basel art fair line up. From June 13–18, under the domed roof of the city's Markthalle, the fair for "new international positions" brings together nearly 70 galleries stemming from 21 countries.
We're always grateful when we can consume art with context—especially at an art fair. Thus, in partnership with VOLTA and GalleryLOG, we're pleased to share this advance look at the processes and inspirations of five e... [more]
Pussykrew is a new media duo consisting of the multi-disciplinary digital artists Tikul and mi$ gogo. Originally from Poland, the two met while studying in Dublin and since then they have blazed a trail across the world creating groundbreaking, mind-melting work. Each piece overwhelms the eyes with intense, addictive richness and hyperreal detail.
Despite the gleaming perfection of their art there is something truly anarchic about Pussykrew’s opulent visions, which is no surprise given... [more]
Film festivals are increasingly viable platforms for film and video artists to show their work, and much attention has been drawn recently to the developing trends of both visual artists working in film and filmmakers exhibiting and selling work in galleries. If the negotiation between these two worlds needs careful brokering to assure mutually beneficial symbiosis, then the interests of experimental film will find no better representation than that offered by the 2016 Oberhausen Short Film Festiva... [more]
This interview was originally published on ARTS.BLACK, a journal of art criticism from Black perspectives.
Tiff Massey, a Detroit-based metalsmith artist, has been a pioneering figure in Detroit’s contemporary arts community in recent years. Massey, one of the few, if not only Black female metalsmith artists in the city, was awarded the Kresge Visual Artist Fellowship in 2015. In the same year, she garnered the support of the Knight Foundation to implement a one-month residency program... [more]
Sam Rolfes makes work that feels like it appeared through a wormhole from another dimension. He reveals a parallel universe that is both unnervingly familiar and utterly alien. Recognizable, organic shapes and textures morph, mutate, and melt into living, breathing organisms born of flesh and technology. Rolfes is one of the few artists working with 3D software to use it in a way that is genuinely unique. He firmly rejects all of the sculptural tropes and clichés that are usually associated... [more]
History, it is said, is written by the victors. But consider who they were and the probability that the annals of human experience have been accurately recorded becomes mired in doubt. Maniacal emperors, murderous zealots, and despotic psychopaths have connived their way to power for millennia. Even those rulers who were moderate or beloved were not immune to vaingloriously tilting the scales of perpetuity in favor of their accomplishments, or those of their favorites, for that is human nature.
Five thousand women are murdered annually by their fathers, sons, brothers, or husbands in so-called honor killings. Or at least that’s the most widely cited number, derived from a UN estimate in 2000, the last time an official study was done. The real number, according to experts like Jordanian journalist Rana Husseini, who has covered the subject for over 20 years, is likely much larger. Honor killings are often considered an internal family issue; they’re a highly sensitive topic, a... [more]
It took a crisis to spark off the next revolution in technology. In 2009, a year after Lehman Brothers’ disastrous crash and its subsequent domino effect on the rest of the financial sector, the Bitcoin was launched. The concept of cryptocurrency, cashless and operating in a peer-to-peer network, had been around for some ten years but until the dawn of the New Great Depression no one had felt the need to explore it in depth. Its stability—the conversion rate has been hovering around... [more]
“Will women always die? Let some men die too. I killed him for my honor,” uttered Çilem Doğan, defending herself with a heartfelt statement. Arrested for murdering her abusive husband, who beat her—even while she was pregnant—and forced her into prostitution, Doğan resisted the long-term abuse one day and shot her husband with bullets originally aimed at her.
Doğan’s story isn’t unique within Turkey’s long history of violence—domestic and o... [more]
A consistent theme across Omer Fast’s work are the many facets of trauma, particularly those which arise from the conflicts being played out across the western world today. But it is how he uses narrative tropes to explore these contemporary tensions that make Fast one of the most talented video artists working at the moment. A major presentation of the artist's videos, currently at BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, is a testament to his layered and moving practice.
5,000 Feet is the Be... [more]
According to her CV, Sara Ludy “currently lives and works everywhere.” Her art reflects this notion through its eerily universal aesthetics that are somehow simultaneously alien and familiar. Ludy’s work has always stood out from her contemporaries in the new media scene through her explorations of virtual places and objects that exist in the spaces between architecture, dreams, and the digital universe. For the past three years Ludy has been developing an expansive 3D archite... [more]
How and why an artist comes to be represented by a gallery is a seemingly mysterious process, one of many parts of the industry that exist behind a veil of secrecy. Yet for an artist who has committed to making a living from their art, it is naturally a topic of some interest, one we wanted to look into a bit further. While our exploration hardly threw the entire process open—if anything it highlighted what an individual and idiosyncratic process establishing gallery representation is—we did... [more]
New York based artist Leah Schrager is known for using overt eroticism in her new media work. She uses her own sexualized image to wildly subvert the concept of the "selfie" while making a vital statement about feminism and the "self" in the digital age.
Schrager first came to prominence under the pseudonym Sarah White, better known as the "Naked Therapist." This bold combination of internet-based performance art and genuine healing therapy achieved notoriety because Schrager (as Sarah White) and the p... [more]