Young Curators / New Ideas IV by Charlie Schultz Sterling Allen, Ben Alper, Pan Aterson, Amy Beecher, A.K. Burns, Darren Coffield, Jillian Conrad, Adam Curtis, Teresa Henriquez, Peter Hobbs, Brookhart Jonquil, Jerry KEARNS, Jen Kennedy, Ryan Lauderdale, Liz Linden, C.J. Matherne, Hugo McCloud, Matt Nichols, Miranda Pissarides, Erik Blinderman & Lisa Rave, Josh Reames, Prem Sahib, Judith Shimer, Adam Parker Smith, Kasper Sonne, Jeni Spota, Jeffrey Vallance, Julia Weist at Meulensteen
June 7th, 2012 - August 24th, 2012
Youth and newness are the totems of this exhibition and it feels that way. An excitement like an electric current runs through the arrangements of artworks, which seem to function as conceptual experiments or curatorial prototypes. The exhibition is built on a somewhat peculiar precedent; a dozen aspiring curators were each allotted a section of the gallery to mount individual micro-shows. Most chose to work with two or three artists; in all there are twenty-nine artists represented by an abund... [more]
If for some reason you’d been worried that contemporary French art was turning into an overly-feminine affair (Grand Palais was so much more manly before Daniel Buren got in there to decorate), go see Benjamin Sebatier’s Hard Work. Bricks, cans, racks, nails, assorted construction-related instruments I’m too girly to know the name of — these are the artists’ materials in use here. The objects they compose seem, in their real or imagined dirtiness, vaguely out of place in the eighth-arrondissement hyper-elegance... [more]
Home Makers by Liz Glass Jeremiah Barber, Randy Colosky, Chris Fraser, Christine M. Peterson, Yulia Pinkusevich, Jonathan Runcio, Jesse Schlesinger, Gareth Spor, Andy Vogt at HIGHLIGHT PROJECT SPACE
January 28th, 2012 - February 28th, 2012
We each have our routines—in our daily lives, and in our art consumption as well. We may bounce around on the hipster-lined streets of Oakland’s Art Murmur on first Fridays, fighting the crowds at Johansson Projects, trading endless text messages with friends we lost in the crowd. We may lurk on 16th Street drinking beers outside of Adobe Books during openings in the Back Room Gallery, pushing our way through for only minutes to try to glimpse actual works of art behind clusters of art-loving San Fran... [more]
2-D Pushers by Lori Zimmer Aude Pariset, Kate Steciw, Letha Wilson at Toomer Labzda
January 8th, 2012 - February 26th, 2012
Photographic imagery as a medium is reimagined through the work of three artists at the Lower East Side’s Toomer Labzda Gallery. Aude Pariset, Kate Steciw and Letha Wilson create a dialogue between their drastically different approaches toward making art by transforming the printed image into a new sculptural medium. Curated by David Harper, the show challenges the somewhat archaic traditions of photography, and uses it as a jumping off point to create an evolved breed of three-dimensional abstract work... [more]
At first sight, the wooden trunks displayed at Motive Gallery would seem like aboriginal art. But they're no post-colonial ready-mades, unlike those we've seen in Vincent Vulsma's show at SMBA this year, for example. Louis De Cordier's “dugouts”, instead, are hand-carved sculptures made by the artist himself, out of white pines that grow specifically in the Spanish Sierra Nevada, where he lives. These canoe-shaped artworks represent quite a change in De Cordier's work, which often favors syntheti... [more]
In 1940, Clement Greenberg declared that “the history of avant-garde painting is that of a progressive surrender to the resistance of its medium,” and the controversial concept of media specificity/purity was born. About thousand years earlier, the painted triptych emerged in early European Christian art decorating the first churches and early sites of worship, turning a form that had first been used in ancient Rome as mere hinged writing tablets into a genre creating replete narrative worlds ab... [more]
“Imagine a very small formal motif and try to execute it economically . . . the essence of the subject must always become visible, even if this is impossible in nature. .... The absence of foreshortening also plays a crucial part in the process.... I begin to execute forms, as if I know nothing about painting or, have I discovered a small, undisputed personal possession, a particular sort of threedimensional representation on the flat surface!”
—Paul Klee, The Diaries of Paul Klee 1898-1918[i]
Bruce Nauman’s installation at Donald Young Gallery centers around simple gestures: fingers on both hands are flexed and touched together in different combinations. A video projected on a screen shows the artist’s hands doing this, while speakers embedded in the walls around the screen emit voices describing the gestures being enacted, “Right hand, thumb and first finger, left hand thumb.” And so on.
To most viewers, the permutations of fingers being curled and uncurled appears at first meaningless... [more]
In Three Trips Around The Block, Exit Art presents a fifteen-year retrospective of New York-based Rico Gatson. Through video, sculpture, and paintings, the show traces the evolution of Gatson’s work. There is a particular urgency invoked by showing a retrospective of Gatson’s oeuvre at this specific Obama-era moment. With a national vocabulary entrenched in misappropriations of concepts like post-race, colorblindness, and post-Blackness, we find ourselves coming up empty handed. There is no languag... [more]
Sometimes the only reaction you have to a show is “hmmm…ok.” Not because the art is bad, or indeed because it is so spectacular that you are lost for words to describe it, but because the exhibition offers you nothing in the way of engagement. Georg Herold at Sadie Coles HQ is one of these: a selection of works arranged in a large, white space with no curatorial intervention whatsoever. Not bad, not wonderful.
Herold offers two themes in this show: monumental human figures constructed from found materials and canvasses spread with... [more]
Another thematic summer group show based on an image of summer-related ecstasy but one that chilly and windswept San Francisco can never truly grasp. SF Tropical at Queens Nails Projects tries to address the word and conjured image that is the TROPICAL as refracted through the fog coming off the Bay. Mark Twain has been apocryphally quoted as saying, “The coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco.” And though the weather was quite cool for summer, it definitely wasn’t the cold... [more]
"Jake or Dinos Chapman" is the result of a year spent by the Chapman brothers working in isolation from one another. As the “or” of the title implies, it is unclear – and perhaps irrelevant – which artist has produced which works. Moreover, the authorial split suggested by the exhibition’s title and by its spanning of both White Cube’s galleries (in Mason’s Yard and Hoxton Square), is belied by the polyreferential, "articulated" corpus of work on show.
The upstairs gallery at Mason’s Yard hous... [more]
What is it about land art that gives it such an enduring appeal? Since its heyday in the 1960s and 70s as a new marker in the expanded field of sculpture, land art has continued to subsist with few fundamental changes. Artists like Richard Long have continued to take walks, arrange stone circles and make expansive marks in the landscape. In the museum-like surroundings of Haunch of Venison, Long has assembled a collection of works that display a remarkable consistency throughout the forty-y... [more]
Wim Wenders’ photographs are like establishing shots: the wide angle images at the beginning of film scenes that locate the action to follow. This is no surprise since they were taken as the filmmaker scouted for locations in countries including Brazil, Japan, Italy, Germany and the US, taking the roads less traveled to seek out the enigmatic, evocative places that haunt these large-scale images.
The forty photos, spanning 1983 to 2011, play out over the walls of the Haunch of Veni... [more]
In the United States, you can make a sculpture of former President George W. Bush’s head atop a phallus without fear of governmental reprisal, as was demonstrated recently at Western Exhibitions. In the recent Westboro Baptist Church judgment, the United States Supreme Court has ensured that even the most disgusting and worthless acts of free speech are protected. And if as an artist your freedom of speech and expression is stifled, the art world will not be silent about it, as the recent David... [more]
Since the late 1980s, Chicago photographer and filmmaker Jeanne Dunning has used abstraction and other techniques to transform objects, the body, and food into something deceitfully grotesque, in a style akin to Edward Weston’s famous pepper. In her new work at the Donald Young Gallery, Dunning arranges classical still lifes of ripe fruits and vegetables on dark, rich-looking drapery and then waits, leaving the transformation up to nature, and photographing the decay.
The main gallery space is... [more]