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. 49, No. 5, January

2010 California Biennial
ORANGE COUNTY MUSEUM OF ART Let's be realistic. Most biennials suffer from a case of glut over guts, failing to really thrill anyone. Whether international in scope or charmingly regional, they are, more often than not, drearily low-yield, baggy...
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8th Gwangju Biennale
"10,000 LIVES," THE 2010 GWANGJU BIENNALE, was an ambitious undertaking--attempting nothing less than to get a grasp on the visible as such. Ultimately, I suppose, this is the purpose to which many international exhibitions aspire, but it is hardly...
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Agnieszka Polska
KUNSTMUSEUM DIESELKRAFTWERK The exhibition "Decades" is the first solo museum presentation outside Poland of the work of Agnieszka Polska, born in 1985. It includes both photographs and videos, all displayed in a single uniformly lit space--which...
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Altered States
THE ELECTRIC HARPSICHORD, CATHERINE CHRISTER HENNIX. MILAN: DIE SCHACHTEL, 2010. CD AND 60-PAGE BOOK. $27. WALKING DOWN THE STREET RECENTLY, I saw an adult hand a thin book to a child she was pushing in a stroller. The adult looked away, and the...
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Angela Bulloch
SIMON LEE GALLERY Toward the end of the 1990s, Angela Bulloch began working with pixel boxes. Each is a wooden cube with one translucent face, behind which are lighting tubes that glow any desired color, controlled by the input signal from the artist's...
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Ann Hamilton
PULITZER FOUNDATION FOR THE ARTS This past summer Ann Hamilton installed stylus, 2010, a single, institution-spanning, multipart work at the Pulitizer Foundation for the Arts (where it remains on view through January 22). In so doing, she carried...
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Body of Influence: Six Views on Paul Thek
Immersed in the heady visions of the 1960s but equally acquainted with the era's darker urgings, Paul Thek (1933-1988) seamlessly wove together sculpture and performance, veering away from Minimalism's primary forms and instead transforming beeswax,...
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Charlotte Park
SPANIERMAN MODERN It is no secret that the Abstract Expressionists objectified and marginalized women. But as those decades recede ever further back (and the mighty male figures only grow more firmly ensconced in the canon), the AbEx pantheon has...
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Chris Caccamise
ELEVEN RIVINGTON GEOMETRIC ABSTRACTION WILL SAVE AMERICA, reads the eponymous text of one of Chris Caccamise's 2010 constructions, fourteen of which were on display in the artist's fifth New York solo exhibition. A bold claim indeed. But while Uncle...
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Chris Duncan
BAER RIDGWAY EXHIBITIONS Chris Duncan's latest exhibition, "Eye Against I," opened with a makeshift, poster-covered wall, like one you might have seen at some grimy punk venue back in the '90s. The gesture underscored the show's title, a nod to...
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Corrado Levi
PEEP-HOLE The title sounded mysterious, "Quasi, autoamori di Johnny, e una poesia" (Almost, Johnny's Self-Loves, and a Poem), but it perfectly illustrated the content of Corrado Levi's show, which opened shortly after the artist's large-scale retrospective...
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Daniel Bauer
ANDREA MEISLIN GALLERY The subject matter of Daniel Bauer's "[TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII]" (Cloudcuckooland)--the inevitable erosion of Utopian modernism's high ideals by the vagaries of everyday life--is overfamiliar to the point of nostalgia....
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Davide Balula
BLACKSTON Upon entering Davide Balula's recent show, your first notion might have been that the forty-odd images hung in a line at eye level (all Untitled, from the series "Walls Meet Walls," 2007-10) made up another instance of "abstract photography."...
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"Debris from the Cultural Underground"
EVER GOLD GALLERY This past summer Levi Strauss & Co. launched an experiential advertising campaign known as the Levi's Workshop in a storefront on San Francisco's Valencia Street. Declaring "We Are All Workers," the popup offered free public...
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Dieter Roth and Bjorn Roth
HAUSER & WIRTH For an exhibition coinciding with what would have been the eightieth birthday of Dieter Roth, the Swiss artist who died in 1998 at the age of sixty-eight, Hauser & Wirth surveys some twenty works that Dieter Roth, father,...
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Dor Guez
KW INSTITUTE FOR CONTEMPORARY ART Coming days after the Israeli cabinet's vote to require non-Jews seeking citizenship to affirm Israel as a Jewish state, Dor Guez's artist's talk on the occasion of his first major European exhibition proved critical...
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Eric Stotik
LAURA RUSSO GALLERY Knowing that Portland, Oregon-based artist Eric Stotik grew up the son of Lutheran missionaries in Papua New Guinea, might go some way in explaining the painter's recurring interest in images of human subjugation, imperialist...
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Erwin Wurm
LEHMANN MAUPIN I've always had something of a soft spot for Erwin Wurm's work, though it feels slightly odd saying so given that his recent exhibition at Lehmann Maupin was the first time I'd ever actually seen any significant amount of it in person....
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Eugene Leroy
MUBA EUGENE LEROY Take courage, late bloomers! Persistence sometimes pays off. It certainly did in the case of Eugene Leroy, a painter born in Tourcoing, near France's border with Belgium. Although the reputation he enjoyed, once he'd established...
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Food Network
THE DOMESTIC KITCHEN has come a long way since the caveman's fire. But the basic idea--that of transforming organic matter into proper food by the controlled application of heat--is more or less the same. Within this admittedly narrow definition, the...
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Frank Nitsche
HAUS AM WALDSEE A solo with a sidekick: Frank Nitsche, a painter known for his complex, synthetic-abstract manipulations of pictorial space, invited Swiss video artist Yves Netzhammer to augment his first institutional show in Berlin with a couple...
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Front Man
MARTIN KIPPENBERGER--MUSIK 1979-1995. BERLIN: EDITION KROTHENHAYN, 2010. THREE 10" VINYL RECORDS AND A 36-PAGE BOOK, $80. CD BOX SET WITH A 72-PAGE BOOK, $67. LIKE MOST VISUAL ARTISTS' musical forays, the recording career of Martin Kippenberger...
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In Memory of Their Feelings
THE NATIONAL PORTRAIT GALLERY'S "Hide/Seek: Difference and Desire in American Portraiture" is an exhibition whose time has finally come. Or so I wrote several weeks ago, before events in Washington--just days before we go to press--came to lend my...
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Jacques Lipchitz
MARLBOROUGH "Jacques Lipchitz's sculpture before 1914 was banal," Douglas Cooper writes, and "the late-baroque style he [cultivated after] 1928 has led to works which are more vigorous than artistically meaningful." For Cooper, curator of the seminal...
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Jean Dupuy
GALERIE LOEVENBRUCK The French artist Jean Dupuy is best known for a strange piece--part heart monitor, part sculpture--called Heart Beats Dust, 1968, which was exhibited that year in Pontus Hulten's "The Machine as Seen at the End of the Mechanical...
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Jeff Koons
LUXEMBOURG & DAYAN On the occasion of a 2006 exhibition of his work at the Serpentine Gallery in London, Jeff Koons spoke to journalist Farah Nayeri about one of the infamous pictures from the "Made in Heaven," 1990-91, series depicting the...
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Jonah Freeman and Justin Lowe
COUNTRY CLUB For anyone familiar with Jonah Freeman and Justin Lowe's previous collaborations--from their initial exploration of speed psychosis (Hello Meth Lab in the Sun, 2008) to the more hallucinogenic Black Acid Co-op, 2009--it would have been...
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Kerry James Marshall
FEW ARTISTS have imagined the present in the manner of art history's grand styles as successfully as Kerry James Marshall. Although he has made work in many media over the past three decades, he remains best known for large figurative paintings that...
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Maria Lassnig
FRIEDRICH PETZEL GALLERY "I do not aim for the 'big emotions' when I'm working," Maria Lassnig explained in these pages two years ago, "but concentrate on small feelings: sensations in the skin or in the nerves, all of which one feels." The real...
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Martin Soto Climent
CLIFTON BENEVENTO Martin Soto Climent's objects are nominally ready-made: buckets and broom handles, a plastic tissue holder and women's stockings, a wine bottle and gloves. Yet their presentation here has entailed some refashioning, by turns straightforward...
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Mary Kelly
MODERNA MUSEET In the New York Times of October 17, 1980, Hilton Kramer maligned Judy Chicago's The Dinner Party, I 974-79--an installation of thirty-nine place settings for historically significant and mythical women--as "art so mired in the pieties...
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Matt Connors
CANADA YOU DON'T KNOW: As the eponym for Matt Connors's sophomore show at Canada and the subject of a large-scale photograph therein, this plaintive slogan reverberated through the process-conscious abstractions on view. It was culled from a protest...
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Michael Wolf
BRUCE SILVERSTEIN Looking at Michael Wolf's photographic series, one is flung between two poles: Is the photographer trying to demonstrate how dehumanized the world has become, or is he insisting on the opposite? One series, "Architecture of...
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Mika Rottenberg
The Rube Goldberg contraption explored in Mika Rottenberg's video Squeeze, 2010, is simultaneously a single machine, a full-blown factory, and a global system. A literal sweatshop, this jerry-built structure is at once concrete, fantastical, and metaphorical,...
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Miriam Bohm
RECOGNITION AND ORIENTATION are the central concerns of Miriam Bohm's production: What do we look at, and from where? Over the past decade, following studies in Vienna and Amsterdam, the Berlin-based artist has made pictures that work with and upon...
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Nina Konnemann
NINA KONNEMANN'S VIDEO M.U.D., 2000, surveys a bizarre landscape suffused with mist and smoke, littered with bottles and trash bags, and peopled by youths of varying identity styles and the occasional anonymous, refugee-like figure staggering about...
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"Non-Cochlear Sound"
DIAPASON Marcel Duchamp notoriously dismissed modern painting as merely visual, calling instead for an "antiretinal" art that would "put painting once again at the service of the mind." In his recent book In the Blink of an Ear: Toward a Non-cochlear...
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Party Lines
IN CONTEMPORARY ART, anything goes. Anything, that is, except for art made explicitly at the behest of the world's most authoritarian nations. Such "official art," to follow this line of reasoning, cannot be contemporary, since it lacks any awareness...
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Paulina Olowska
METRO PICTURES During the mid-2000s, Paulina Olowska worked ardently to revive a cast of women excluded from the canon of European modernism (for instance, the British Pop painter Pauline Boty in 2006 and the Polish artist Zofia Stryjenska in 2008);...
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Phil Collins
KERLIN GALLERY This exhibition, "Ich esse keine Bananen mehr und trinke naturlich keine Coca-Cola" (I don't eat bananas anymore and of course I don't drink Coca-Cola), consisted of two works developed within the context of last year's Berlin Biennale....
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Picasso: Guitars 1912-1914
Picasso: Guitars 1912-1914 MUSEUM OF MODERN ART, NEW YORK February 13-June 6 Curated by Anne Umland OF ALL THE AMAZING FEATS of William Rubin's curatorial career at MOMA--his exhibitions, his acquisitions, his global associations--the one...
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"Polytechnic"
RAVEN ROW In the 1980s, a handful of unabashedly politicized fine art BA. courses emerged in the UK. Their titles tended to include the word critical--Saint Martins School of Art in London, for example, instituted a "fine art and critical studies"...
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Pop before Pop: Welles, Sirk, Hitchcock
The communication system of the twentieth century is, in a special sense, Pop Art's subject. --Lawrence Alloway, "Popular Culture and Pop Art" (1969) "THE VIRUS OF ARTISTIC AMBITION" There was always in twentieth-century cinema an implicit...
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Preservation Society
On the occasion of the major survey "Chaos and Classicism: Art in France, Italy, and Germany, 1918-1936," organized by Kenneth E. Silver and on view at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York through January 9, Artforum asked art historian and...
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Rainier Lericolais
CENTRE D'ART CONTEMPORAIN Sixty works dated from 1992 to the present, some made specifically for this exhibition, offer a survey of the visual work of Rainier Lericolais, who is both an artist and a musician--a creator, one might say, of curiosities....
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Rate of Exchange
AFTER MEETING KURT SCHWITTERS in December 1919, the Berlin Dadaist Richard Huelsenbeck famously derided him as a "lower-middle-class Victorian" stuck in a "static, snug, middle-class world"--and, even worse, "the Caspar David Friedrich of the Dadaist...
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Robert Irwin: Four Proposals
Enveloped in fields of glow and shadow, viewers of Robert Irwin's signature sculptures and installations never know quite what they are seeing. And yet they are made acutely, surprisingly aware of their own perceptual faculties, their bodily tics and...
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Rosana Schoijett
ZAVALETA LAB ARTE CONTEMPORANEO In 1904, as Virginia Woolf lay in bed suffering from a nervous breakdown, she reported hearing birds singing in Greek. Later, the birds in her novel The Waves would play a striking role paralleling the developing...
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Saadane Afif: Talks about "Anthologie De Thumour Noir" (Anthology of Black Humor), 2010
IT SEEMS THAT MUSEUMS increasingly wane exhibitions to speak about museums themselves--in order to justify their importance by reflecting the legitimacy of their history or to demonstrate their openness to forms and approaches they used to be able...
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Setareh Shahbazi
98WEEKS PROJECT SPACE Toying as they did with notions of time, space, depth, distance, and displacement, the works that made up Setareh Shahbazi's first solo exhibition in Beirut could more accurately be considered a single installation functioning...
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SITE Santa Fe Biennial
SITE SANTA FE That the term stop motion is affixed to a technique for making moving pictures seems something of a contradiction; then again, the animation that results from stitching together still images has become so commonplace that the words...
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Tamara Arroyo
GALERIA JOSE ROBLES Better than any of Tamara Arroyo's exhibitions to date, "El arte de la memoria" (The Art of Memory) summarized her concerns as they are expressed in drawing. The title correctly posits memory and its relationship with artistic...
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The View from Doha
WHEN SYRIAN ARTIST Fateh al-Moudarres painted his version of The Last Supper in 1965, he summoned forth apostles, idols, and goblets of table wine in an entirely unholy configuration. Now on public view for the first time in decades at the newly opened...
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Tobias Madison
KUNSTVEREIN MUNCHEN The title of Tobias Madison's recent show was the tautological mantra "Do It to Do It," a phrase borrowed from Donald Trump's 1987 book, The Art of the Deal. This information--presented in the small accompanying catalogue--laid...
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Top Ten
1 CLUB SCREWBALL (AKA CLUB DING-A-LING OR CLUB WOW!), LOS ANGELES The underground music scene in Los Angeles has always been a glamour-gone-awry kind of affair, where subjective experience is worn as fashion; where attendees roll up wheelchair-bound...
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Viewing Distance
MARC BAUER'S DRAWINGS constantly call themselves into question. Made largely with pencil, they nevertheless lack contours, renouncing what was long held to be the medium's prime strength: its ability to delineate forms with high precision. The Swiss...
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Virgil Marti
INSTITUTE OF CONTEMPORARY ART In the latest installment of the Philadelphia ICA's guest curator program, locally based artist Virgil Marti has done a rare thing. He has put together an exhibition composed almost entirely of museum-quality historical...
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William Cobbing
VIAFARINI Since Viafarini moved to its new space in 2008, this nonprofit art organization has often presented shows that mine the expressive potential of the building, a former tram depot. The first thing that caught the viewer's eye in the English...
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William Leavitt: Theater Objects
Three times a year Artforum looks ahead to the coming season. The following survey previews forty-five shows opening around the world between January and April. William Leavitt: Theater Objects MUSEUM OF CONTEMPORARY ART, LOS ANGELES March...
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Yazid Oulab
GALERIE ERIC DUPONT Sufism--Muslim mysticism--serves as a sort of philosophical base for Yazid Oulab's fragile sculptures, often made of everyday objects and materials that the Algerian-born, Marseille, France-based artist endows with new significance....
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Yoshitomo Nara
THE LAST TIME Yoshitomo Nara's cute 'n' angry girls appeared in New York in a big way, they were under the umbrella of "Little Bay: The Arts of Japan's Exploding Subculture," Takashi Murakami's provocative show at the Japan Society in 2005. There Nara's...
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You Can Still See Her
ON THE FORTIETH ANNIVERSARY of the Summer of Love, the Lincoln Center Out of Doors festival celebrated the "spirit of the '60s" with a series of concerts by musicians Dave Brubeck, Arlo Guthrie, and Pauline Oliveros and performances by choreographers...
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Zoe Crosher
CHARLIE JAMES GALLERY The suggestive title of Zoe Crosher's recent exhibition, "For UR Eyes Only--the Unveiling of Michelle duBois," might have been lifted from a mass-market paperback at the airport bookstore. Appropriately enough, a flight attendant...
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