Jamillah James, who was announced as the curator of the Institute of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (ICA LA) this August, comes to the new institution, formerly the Santa Monica Museum of Art, after serving as the assistant curator at The Hammer Museum. For the past two years she has worked at a breakneck pace organizing exhibitions for the Hammer with the nonprofit Art + Practice at their Leimert Park space. Prior to moving to LA, James held curatorial fellowships at the Studio Museum in Harlem and t... [more]
Donald Trump’s degenerate lurch for the presidential ring to rule them all is, for any decent person, a terrifying threat to social and civic sanity. Not only does this malignant cultural tumor, and suckling plunderer of female genitalia—ably assisted by his hell-bound apprentice, the godless homophobe Mike Pence—aim to unzip the fabric of decency in which a culture must be clothed against the chill of hate, but he does so with a sickening appetite for racism, xenophobia and c... [more]
This week’s Web Artist of the Week is not an artist, but a gallerist and curator, as we zoom out to feature the arts professionals working to expand the spaces and visibility of new media and digital art.
Julia Greenway is part of a slowly growing global movement of people dedicating physical galleries to new media art. Shows featuring new media are now fairly commonplace but gallerists deciding to focus on it exclusively are still relatively rare. Greenway’s Seattle gallery Inters... [more]
“I’d never put this shit in my house, ever,” Jamian Juliano-Villani told Hans Ulrich Obrist during a Frieze Week artist talk. She was referring to her own paintings, installed around the audience at Studio Voltaire. There is nothing pretty about Juliano-Villani’s garish, and slightly disturbing, cartoon paintings—no offence to the artist, and probably none taken.
Juliano-Villani began painting four years ago, after leaving New Jersey and moving into an apartment in New... [more]
After a Bob Marley concert in 1979 at the Santa Barbara County Bowl, the artist Henry Taylor found himself backstage, seated next to the legend himself. Eyes closed, Marley sat silent in meditation for twenty minutes before engaging Taylor in what felt like an hour-long conversation. What was exchanged between them is unknown, but the memory stayed with Taylor forever.
Kahlil Joseph’s new film and installation Wizard of the Upper Amazon (WOTUA), which accompanies Taylor’s three-room exhibition o... [more]
Orlando-based Elizabeth Mputu is part of a rising wave of new media artists using digital platforms to express powerful political and social ideas through their work. Her art deals thoughtfully and forcefully with issues of feminism, gender, sexuality, inequality, and race, all projected through the lens of someone who has grown up saturated in all aspects of digital culture.
Mputu’s work combines abstract conceptualism, experimental video, performance, poetry, found digital ephemera, selfies, m... [more]
American politics has always had its fair share of weirdness, but with presidential debate season underway we’ve reached new levels of surrealism. In the days following the first debate, YouTube videos circulated showing guys bashing in TV screens with baseball bats, dropping them from balconies, or even head butting them into oblivion. Not very productive, but at least these disgusted viewers cared enough to react. But there are also those who, instead of punching TVs in frustration, have t... [more]
Coming to Power (Again): A 1993 Exhibition of Sexually Explicit Feminist Art Still Resonates by Olivia B. Murphy Pnina Jalon Armour, Lynda Benglis, Judith Bernstein, Louise Bourgeois, Ellen Cantor, Patricia Cronin, Mary Beth Edelson, Nicole Eisenman, Nancy Fried, Nan Goldin, Nancy Grossman, G.B. Jones, Doris Kloster, Joyce Kozloff, Zoe Leonard, Monica Majoli, Marilyn Minter, Alice Neel, Lorraine O'Grady, Yoko Ono, Carolee Schneemann, Joan Semmel, Cindy Sherman, Nancy Spero, Hannah Wilke at Maccarone (Morton Street)
September 9th - October 16th
Entering Maccarone Gallery on the evening of the opening for Coming to Power: 25 Years of Sexually X-plicit Art By Women, almost felt like walking into a reunion. This is possibly because the exhibition is a restaging of a 1993 show curated by Ellen Cantor at the then brand new David Zwirner Gallery, but also because there is a level of communal excitement that goes beyond the usual group show fervor. It’s an excitement indicative of the unprecedented effort on the part of Maccarone and six... [more]
It is odd to think that minimalist Toba Khedoori’s solo exhibition, currently on display at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, is her first major museum presentation in her adopted hometown of Los Angeles, considering that she has been a staple and original voice in the city’s art scene since the early 1990s. This long overdue survey, featuring work spanning 25 years, beautifully highlights Khedoori’s career and intricate draftsmanship. It also delves into a significant theme i... [more]
Visitors enter a dark gallery. As their eyes adjust they find themselves faced with a wooden frame structure occupying almost the entire space. They can walk inside of it or around it. Projected on one wall of the structure is a video of a white, humble room furnished with simple white stools, tables, and shelves. Every fifteen minutes a small origami crane mobile appears near a doorway, then disappears. There is something off-kilter with the objects on screen; they are life-size, yet they seem to... [more]
I first visited the Stony Island Arts Bank about six months ago, on an unseasonably warm Saturday afternoon in April. As I approached the building, I was struck first by the sunlight slanting through its massive stone columns, second by how much it stood out from its surroundings. It looked as if the Field Museum had a child—a rebellious teenager—who snuck away from Chicago’s Museum Campus in the middle of the night to start a new life on a sleepy South Side street. And, in a sen... [more]
Istanbul-based Haydi Roket is part of a rising wave of new media artists turning their hands to the curation of online digital art shows. He launched his latest show Virtual Dream earlier this week. Virtual Dream features 30 artists (full disclosure: I am one of them) exploring the tensions and inconsistencies between our real and our increasingly dominant digital lives.
Most online experiences consist of a seemingly random sequence of abstract images and ideas, much like our “real” drea... [more]
“Each of us has his own rhythm of suffering” Roland Barthes wrote in his Mourning Diary following the death of his mother with whom he lived until her passing. The performance of suffering, and the unique, personal rhythms it can take, is at the center of An Occupation of Loss, Taryn Simon’s monumental installation and performance now in its two-week tenure at the Park Avenue Armory.
Eleven concrete towers—thin, cylindrical, dystopian—trace a semicircle through the... [more]
As I walked along the winding path of Parque Ibirapuera toward the São Paulo Bienal entrance, I thought about how the impeachment decision, which ousted Brazil’s first female president, Dilma Rousseff, was finalized a few days prior. When the decision came down, I was with a group of artists during a residency. We spent ten days together in Zone Leste, the east zone in the periphery, away from the bustling city center. One of us had gone out the night before and reported that there... [more]
The problem of presence
Presence wracks the contemporary artist’s existence. Take, for instance, Marina Abramovic’s 2010 retrospective, The Artist Is Present, during which the artist famously sat in the gallery for the entirety of her exhibition’s run at MoMA. In her essay “‘The Artist is Present’: Artistic Re-enactments and the Impossibility of Presence,” critic Amelia Jones argues that the very fact that Abramovic was there, in the live act, “dest... [more]
An old Norwegian woman in a green and silver Smurf costume, paint smeared on her face, is making chocolate cookies in an underground-bunker-turned-car-park. Standing behind her, contributing to the cookery process, is a parrot-masked performer, stirring the mixture and slapping flour-dusted hands together.
It’s the haphazard sort of mayhem that Marvin Gaye Chetwynd has become known for producing throughout her career, and which saw her nominated for the Turner Prize in 2012. This particul... [more]