Artforum International

An international contemporary art magazine covering sculpture, painting, mixed media, and installation works, as well as architecture, music, and popular culture. Includes artist interviews and reviews of individual artists and/or galleries; reviews of fi

Articles from Vol. 32, No. 6, February

Alain Jacquet
CENTRE GEORGES POMPIDOU; GALERIE BEAUBOURG Alain Jacquet's paintings from the past ten years or so have aroused a lot of curiosity, chiefly because a number of them (executed in his New York studio) provoke the viewer with their "excessive" realism....
Alphonse Borysewicz
YOSHII GALLERY Maybe it's the hovering rash of dark spots on the quartet he calls Hunting the Queen, or the image of a chalky, primitive hive at the bottom tier of For an Unknown Church, or the migrating scatter of drably pigmented, insectlike marks...
Ashley Bickerton
SONNABEND "Just Another Shitty Day in Paradise! (A Travelogue)": clever, smirking, weary and depressed, this title announces Ashley Bickerton's latest exhibition of sculptures. We find ourselves amid the wreckage of a South Seas debacle. Sharks and...
Betty Goodwin
GALLERIE RENE BLOUIN While Betty Goodwin's "Swimmers," 1982-85, and "Carbon Series," 1986, with their free-floating, visually truncated figures have a note of tragic finality to them, the "Nerve Series," 1993, seems more open-ended. Here, her usual...
Body Bildung
Kathy Acker was on tour this summer and fall promoting her new book, My Mother: Demonology, a Novel. She interrupted the California portion for this interview break. What I've always found so strong and futural about Acker's work is its close with adolescence,...
Claus Carstensen
GIMPEL FILS LTD. Our century of art reveals a rich and populous subcultural world of work of--or on--excrement, excretions, and fluids. To name a few: the prissy urinal of Marcel Duchamp, as well as his later semen painting; Piero Manzoni's canned shit;...
Critical Reflections
IT IS MY PLEASURE TO INTRODUCE Jonathan Crary, a quiet intelligence who comes with many accomplishments, Guggenheim fellow, a member of the Institute of Advanced Study at Princeton, a founding editor of Zone, teacher first of visual art at the University...
... et Lumiere
Photographic views of Paris propose two dissimilar worlds: that of daytime and that of night. . . . The elements of the night are the great stage directors of the social fantastic, which is ingenuous and always easily understandable. Pierre Mac Orlan,...
"Face of the Gods." (Museum for African Art, New York, New York)
MUSEUM FOR AFRICAN ART "Face of the Gods: Art and Altars of Africa and the African Americas" was Robert Farris Thompson's most ambitious and successful project to date. Supported by an extensively researched catalogue, this show traced the development...
Generation E: British Rave
In his 1939 essay "Goal: New Music, New Dance," John Cage prophesied an electronic music of the future made by and for dancers: "What we can't do ourselves will be done by machines and electrical instruments which we will invent." The modern European...
George Stone
RUTH BLOOM GALLERY George Stone's latest installation evoked a scene from a morgue: ten gun-metal gray latex sheets, doubled to form what looked like body bags, lay stretched out on a concrete floor. Resembling useless oxygen tubes, thin rubber hoses...
Into the Gap: Art Club 2000
I STILL REMEMBER THAT JINGLE AND HOW SINISTER IT SOUNDED TO ME: "FALL IN TO THE GAP." IT WAS WORSE THAN THE U2 SONG "I WILL FOLLOW." IT MADE ME THINK OF THE ABYSS. Later I would be troubled by the slogan "For every generation there's a Gap." There's...
Jannis Kounellis
MARIAN GOODMAN GALLERY There was something perversely nostalgic and mournful about Jannis Kounellis' untitled installation. A kind of last-ditch demonstration of a dead, or at least fading history, the work was at once a graveyard and a synthesis of...
John Duff
McKEE GALLERY John Duff's new enamel and fiberglass wall sculptures are among the most esthetically exquisite, precious work I've seen in a while. Some are abstract columns, the majority of which are wall-mounted, as in Ladder and Pale Madder Cone (both...
Jose Pedro Croft
GALERIE FUCARES One of Jose Pedro Croft's main avenues of inquiry is the delimitation of what is external and internal to each form. This question is developed both in the internal structure of each piece and in its articulation within the surrounding...
Konrad Klapheck
EDWARD THORP GALLERY Although Konrad Klapheck is of the same generation as, for instance, Gerhard Richter (his fellow professor at the Dusseldorf Art Academy), Klapheck's work gives the impression of belonging to quite another time, perhaps that of...
Mika Yoshizawa
SKYDOOR ART PLACE AOYAMA; SOH GALLERY An abstract painter who became known in the early '80s for her large-scale, gestural paintings on unorthodox surfaces such as vinyl and aluminum, Mika Yoshizawa has continue to refine her vocabulary with an uncommon...
Mitja Tusek
GALERIE BRUGES LA MORTE Mitja Tusek's paintings are based on the principles of addition and multiplication, in which the final image is clearly both the result and the effacement of all of its constituent parts. Using beeswax that has been tinted with...
MTV Rules (for a Bunch of Wussies)
ANDREW HULKTRANS ON BEAVIS AND BUTT-HEAD BEAVIS: How come, like, some stuff sucks, but then, like, some stuff is pretty cool? BUTT-HEAD: Uhhh, well, if nothing sucked, and everything was cool all the time, then, like, how would you know it was cool?...
Nassos Daphnis
BUTLER INSTITUTE OF AMERICAN ART For the past forty years Nassos Daphnis' paintings have embodied a seemingly imperturbable equilibrium. Since 1952 his canvases have been subdivided and proportioned with the snap-string precision and compass-wielding...
"Objects of Their Affection." (Interact Center, New York, New York)
INTERART CENTER "Fashion may be glamorous," its detractors will admit before delivering what they consider to be the coup de grace, "but it's vacuous." The frumpy and the dumpy might criticize fashion but it's not just a passive process of consuming...
Peter Hristoff
DAVID BEITZEL In an era of fashionable murk the incandescent tones of Peter Hristoff's latest paintings are like a defiant shout of joy or anger. I suspect that they may also be a protest against esthetic conformity, something for which this passionate...
Rachel Berwick
NORDANSTAD GALLERY Rachel Berwick's recent exhibition "Sounding Measures" consisted of two interdependent installations fabricated from translucent blocks of copal, a premature form of amber. Large irregular chunks of unrefined copal with hollowed impressions...
Revenge of the Mouse Diva: Karen Kilimnik's Favorite Things
Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing, there is a field. I'll meet you there. Rumi, Sufi poet Karen Kilimnik and Madonna are in my dream, not together, and I'm their friend. Karen is wearing this cone bra like Madonna. We're in junior high...
Robert Cumming
MIT LIST VISUAL ARTS CENTER Massachusetts artist Robert Cumming was featured in Boston this fall in three concurrent exhibitions: a major retrospective of photography, works on paper, sculpture, and painting at the Museum of Fine Arts; a small show...
Robert Longo
METRO PICTURES In Robert Longo's recent exhibition, the penis reasserted itself with a vengeance. We were introduced to his recent work by a granite tombstone inscribed with the title "Bodyhammers: Cult of the Gun." On the left side of the gallery,...
Robert Ryman
MUSEUM OF MODERN ART It's all in the name--the stubborn consistency of tact, vision, and method, the economy of means, the paradoxically antisystematic system of repetitions, the governing law of tautology. Moving through over thirty years of Robert...
Robert Wilson
BROOKLYN ACADEMY OF MUSIC Robert Wilson's The Black Rider, 1990, is a delirious journey through a vivid theatrical landscape dotted with the signposts of vaudeville, cabaret, circus, and opera. A rousing and even bombastic overture--of horns and electric...
Schindler's List
Not until Schindler was I really able to not reference other filmmakers," Steven Spielberg has said. "I'm always referencing everybody. I didn't do any of that on this movie." But he did something even more "post-Modern" and appropriative: he referenced...
Six Degrees of Separation
There is something morally anemic about Six Degrees of Separation. On Broadway, where it ran like a Restoration comedy on poppers, the messier social issues of John Guare's play were folded in on themselves--as if a perfect sheet of dough covered everything...
Stephanie Rose
E. M. DONAHUE GALLERY Stephanie Rose's "Still Pictures," 1993, are, first of all, a reminder that in terms of technique she is simply one of the best painters around. Luckily Rose's technical facility is at the service of a flamboyant imagination and...
Ulrich Ruckriem
ESPAI POBLENOU Ulrich Ruckriem's installation in the exhibition hall of this Foundation follows those of Jannis Kounellis (who opened it with a historic installation in 1989), Jan Dibbets, Mario Merz, John Cage, Bruce Naumann, Rebeca Horn, Richard...
Untitled (Polyurethane Objects and Real Objects)
The Swiss artists Peter Fischli and David Weiss are putterers who make things they needn't make; items that are usually useful achieve futility in their hands. They are a miniguild, producing an art that goes undercover, that slips by, momentarily undetected...
"We, East-French: Hungarian Art in the 1980s." (Csok Istvan Gallery, Szekesfehervar, Hungary)
CSOK ISTVAN GALLERY Surveying the art of the past decade in Hungary requires an effort to understand the still enigmatic period that ended so abruptly in 1989. More autonomous and less political, art started to articulate a new vision in the relative...
West of Righteous
When I first met Cornel West, in 1979 or '80, I had been operating on the Eurocentric assumption that each of the three central philosophical traditions of Western culture--the German, the French, and the Anglo-American--had a proper style and language...
What Is This Thing Called Melvins?
Every three to five years there seems to be one band that artists, intellectuals, and cultural critics gravitate toward as symptomatic of the moment and, on a higher level, as a symbiotically beneficial organism. A few years ago it was the expansive...