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. 44, No. 8, April

1000 Words: Angela Bulloch; Talks about Group of Seven (One Absent Friend), 2005
FROM THE POINTEDLY economical gestures with which she began her career--lamps dimming or brightening in the viewer's presence (Before and After Follow Each Other, 1990); recordings of applause or jeers triggered by visitors' movements (as in Laughing...
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Alec Soth: Gagosian Gallery
Like many contemporary photographers who have rediscovered the value of the road trip as a route to vernacular culture, Alec Soth encounters out-of-the-way places and people and pushes past documentary investigation into lurid hyperrealism. His new...
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Alice Konitz: Susanne Vielmetter
In her 2004 exhibition at Susanne Vielmetter, Alice Konitz presented an absurdist video featuring four characters in an idyllic natural setting, all wearing geometric masks that looked at once primitive and fashionable. Such images represented a way...
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Andrea Geyer: Iaspis
In the modern metropolis, the individual is reduced to a negligible quantity, wrote German sociologist Georg Simmel in 1903. "He becomes a single cog as over against the vast overwhelming organization of things and forces which gradually take out of...
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Ari Marcopoulos: Rena Bransten Gallery
The nine color photographs that constituted Ari Marcopoulos's concise recent exhibition focus on moments drawn from ordinary life, yet a sense of foreboding pervades all of them. Jennifer, Sonoma, 2005, depicts the photographer's wife (a frequent subject)...
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ARS 06: Kiasma
Unlike the Technicolor world in The Wizard of Oz, where good ultimately outweighs evil, ARS 06 ("Sense of the Real"), the seventh in a series of international exhibitions held in Helsinki since 1961, has given way to the dark side. The sometimes surreal...
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As He Lay Dying: James Quandt on the Death of Mr. Lazarescu
We're just a bunch of miserable people, mister. --Mr. Lazarescu THE CINEMA OF death has a new classic to stand with Maurice Pialat's La Gueule ouverte, Stan Brakhage's The Act of Seeing with One's Own Eyes, and Derek Jarman's Blue: Cristi Puiu's...
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Bertien Van Manen: Yancey Richardson Gallery
In On Photography (1977), Susan Sontag characterizes photographs as melancholy objects that "state the innocence, the vulnerability of lives heading toward their own destruction." Implying Sigmund Freud's idea of melancholia as unresolved mourning,...
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Blind Spots: Hal Foster on the Art of Joachim Koester
Nothing is more instructive than a confusion of time frames. --Alexander Kluge, The Devil's Blind Spot JOACHIM KOESTER WORKS along the borders between documentary and fiction. Typically he begins with an obscure story bound up with a particular...
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Book Smart: Chrissie Iles on John Latham
THE PASSING OF John Latham, one of Britain's senior artists (and also one of the most radical), marks the end of an era. A central figure in British art since the '50s, Latham died on January 1, at eighty-four. He wielded a subtle but profound influence...
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Carolee Schneemann: P.P.O.W
Carolee Schneemann's recent solo exhibition at P.P.O.W. coincided with Thomas Hirschhorn's latest at Gladstone Gallery. Both, it scarcely needs pointing out, dealt with the politics of representation and the representation of politics, but a more interesting...
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Cecilia Edefalk: Art Institute of Chicago
Seven years ago, Swedish artist Cecilia Edefalk visited London and embarked on a quasi-mystical journey that began at Tate Britain. Purchasing a drink in the museum's cafeteria, she noticed that it was stamped with an unusually precise expiration date...
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Chiharu Shiota: Haus Am Lutzowplatz
Chiharu Shiota, born in Osaka in 1972, settled in Germany in 1996, initially to study with Marina Abramovic; she has lived in Berlin since 1997. Her path of development is paradigmatic for its time: Her studio rooms in Mitte were in a building formerly...
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Christopher Deeton: ATM Gallery
It's not immediately clear how Christopher Deeton achieves the elementary symmetry evident in the three large paintings from his new series that were shown recently at ATM Gallery's Twenty-seventh Street space. Revealing no brushwork, the ominous black...
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Christopher Miner: Mitchell-Innes & Nash
"I still don't know what to do with myself." The postcollegiate narrator of Christopher Miner's seventeen-minute video The Best Decision Ever Made, 2004, is a profoundly dissatisfied soul. Recalling a visit to his grandparents' house on the occasion...
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Dean Kessmann: Conner Contemporary Art
The translucent, quasi-organic, saclike forms that are the subjects of Dean Kessmann's recent color digital prints are curious and inviting, but also a little disturbing. They appear to be embryonic forms so brilliantly backlit that their innards are...
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De Rijke/de Rooij: Friedrich Petzel Gallery
Dutch artists Jeroen de Rijke and Willem de Rooij are best known for their 16- and 35-mm films, which often push the moving image toward stasis in service of the duo's coolly cerebral, career-long examination of the mechanisms of photographic and filmic...
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Dianna Frid: Museum of Contemporary Art
Botanical gardens are to nature what art museums are to culture, highly selective showcases in which materials are forcibly recontextualized and arranged in hierarchies for public consumption. They speak about power and hubris, with the quasi-colonialist...
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Double or Nothing: John Miller on the Art of Douglas Huebler
IN RETROSPECT, Douglas Huebler seems to have framed the scope of his work (or at least the general reception of it) with two irreconcilable declarations, the first being Conceptual art's most oft-quoted pronouncement, "The world is full of objects,...
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Fikret Atay: Kunstverein Fur Die Rheinlande Und Westfalen
When I first saw Fikret Atay's work almost two years ago at Buro-Friedrich in Berlin, I was immediately impressed. His videos struck me as at once strange and familiar. When I saw them again recently at the Kunstverein Dusseldorf, the contrast between...
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Florian Maier-Aichen: Blum & Poe
In his recent exhibition at Blum & Poe (an identical set of works was shown almost simultaneously at 303 Gallery in New York), German-born photographer Florian Maier-Aichen brought a painter's and draftsman's eye to the practice of photography....
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Francois Arnal: Galerie Jousse Entreprise
Francois Arnal came to painting as an autodidact in 1947, practicing an informal and materialist abstraction, before constructing a pictorial universe of marks and imprints. In 1965, the everyday object entered his painting and brought him a step closer...
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Gilberto Zorio: Giorgio Persano
The five-pointed star has been a recurring image in Gilberto Zorio's work since the early '70s, and recently it has taken the form of a tower with a star-shaped plan. This show featured (and took its name from) La tolda silenziosa (Silent Deck; all...
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Joe Sola: Atlanta College of Art Gallery
Jacques Lacan once observed, "In the human being, virile display itself appears as feminine." The title of Joe Sola's recent exhibition, "Taking a Bullet," first mounted at Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions, hints at a similar paradox. Sola evokes...
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Joe Zucker: Paul Kasmin Gallery and Nolan/Eckman Gallery
At first glance, the "Open Storage" series from 2005, that Joe Zucker exhibited recently at Paul Kasmin Gallery and the "Container Ships" series from 2004-2005 shown concurrently at Nolan/Eckman Gallery both seem to display the verve that has marked...
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Kate Ericson and Mel Ziegler: MIT List Visual Arts Center
The decade-long creative partnership of Kate Ericson and Mel Ziegler, which was cut short by Ericson's death in 1995, resulted in a substantial body of public projects, site-specific installations, and mixed-media sculptures, all marked by a keen social...
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Kirsten Stoltmann: Wallspace
In her New York solo debut, Los Angeles-based artist Kirsten Stoltmann used materials and techniques familiar from junior high art class to access the absurd heights and maudlin depths of teenage fantasy. The arrangement of collages, sculpture, and...
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Life on Earth: The Films of Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne
THE ARRIVAL OF L'Enfant (The Child), the fourth in a series of closely related feature films from Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne, offers a welcome opportunity to consider--and indeed celebrate--the Belgian brothers' achievements to date. Their films...
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Lina Bertucci: Perry Rubenstein Gallery
Lina Bertucci's photographs of contemporary artists are an irresistible prospect for fans: Who wouldn't be curious to see his or her favorite painter or sculptor submit to the aesthetic of another? Nevertheless, the images do resonate beyond the recognition...
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Mai-Thu Perret: Galerie Barbara Weiss
"Je est un autre" (I Is Somebody Else), Arthur Rimbaud once declared. But what if Rimbaud's "I" were a group of women--a band of disgruntled urbanites who have abandoned their Palm Pilots to live an unscheduled life in the desert? Mai-Thu Perret explores...
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Mark Leckey: Portikus Im Leinwandhaus
Around the same time Mark Leckey's show "Gorgeousness and Gorgeosity" opened in Frankfurt, tabloids in the UK were in a frenzy about the new laws permitting around-the-clock liquor sales and the prospect of an ugly rise in binge drinking in Britain....
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"Masters of American Comics": UCLA Hammer Museum Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles
FIFTEEN YEARS is a long time to prepare a retort. "Masters of American Comics," an exhibition certifying the genius of fifteen male comics artists, eleven of them dead, seems to be a detailed answer to the Museum of Modern Art's infamous 1990-91 show...
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Matt Mullican: Christine Burgin Gallery
In 1925, reflecting in "An Autobiographical Study" on the hypnotic treatment that he had abandoned in his clinical practice years before, Sigmund Freud wrote that the method had nonetheless proved to be an "immense help," in select cases, "by widening...
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McDermott & McGough: Cheim & Read
In their recent exhibition, "A True Story Based on Lies," McDermott & McGough presented a series of crisply painted, brightly colored canvases that rework lurid comic book and commercial illustrations. Chump into a Champ, 1964, 2005, for example,...
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Mika Rottenberg: Nicole Klagsbrun Gallery
The blood-chilling term efficiency expert was coined in the early twentieth century by mechanical engineer and management consultant Frederick Taylor, who famously timed factory employees to encourage them to work faster. Mika Rottenberg's videos of...
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Olivia Plender
Olivia Plender is a London-based artist and coeditor of Untitled magazine. Her work was recently featured in "Le Voyage Interieur: Paris-London" at Espace EDF Electra in Paris and currently appears in the Tate Triennial at Tate Britain in London. She...
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Orla Barry: Camden Arts Centre
According to the catalogue accompanying the show (now at the Irish Museum of Modern Art in Dublin), Orla Barry's Portable Stones, 2005, indicates "the limits that apply to putting any flow of ideas into words. The impossibility of language and communication...
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Pearl C. Hsiung: Max Wigram Gallery
Fantasy and humor are fundamental to the work of Los Angeles-based artist Pearl C. Hsiung, a recent Goldsmiths grad whose work is focused on painting but also extends into installation. The six large paintings on view in "To the Big Life," her second...
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Planning Stages: Josefina Ayerza on Guillermo Kuitca
GUILLERMO KUITCA typically settles on a given structure as a form of emptiness. One may consider his work a kind of seating plan, as the Argentinean artist himself will tell you: Vacant chairs attest to an absence; what's more, the plan is only a representation,...
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Primal Dirge: Jan Tumlir on Sunn O)))
LISTENING TO A SUNN O))) record at normal volume is a calculatedly disappointing experience. Take, for example, their latest full-length album, Black One: Released on CD last year and recently issued as a double LP, it features an elaborate gatefold...
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Roxy Paine: James Cohan Gallery
Roxy Paine's work tends to fall into two quite different categories: machines that make art, and art that looks very much like nature. In the first category are devices called the "PMU" (painting manufacturing unit) and "Scumaks" (auto sculpture makers)....
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Sabrina Mezzaqui: Galleria Continua
In a stark white space under a centuries-old archway, Sabrina Mezzaqui assembled works on paper and a video nearly as immaterial as thoughts under the title "Sottolineature" (Underlinings). Sitting just inside the entry way on a simple wooden pedestal,...
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Scott Barber: McKinney Avenue Contemporary/Barry Whistler Gallery
Painter Scott Barber, who died last year of complications following a bone marrow transplant, was recently the subject of two concurrent shows in Dallas. McKinney Avenue Contemporary (known locally as the MAC) presented a survey of works spanning the...
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Second Guangzhou Triennial: Guangdong Museum of Art
While the First Guangzhou Triennial, in 2002, provided viewers with a sweeping overview of creative output by the so-called first generation of China's avant-garde artists, the second is an attempt to reconfigure the relationship between the triennial...
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Seydou Keita: Sean Kelly Gallery
Seydou Keita, "the Bresson of Bamako," died in 2001, leaving a body of work specific to the postcolonial, urban Mali of the 1950s and '60s. But Keita's story--from his experience as a self-taught photographer catering to a regional clientele, to the...
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Soo Kim: Pasadena Museum of California Art
Soo Kim's They Stop Looking at the Sky, 2006, which was shown recently in the Pasadena Museum of California Art's project space, is a set of collages made by using a computer to juxtapose found and original photographs and new drawings, printing the...
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Suzanne Hudson on Katja Strunz
MAYBE THIS IS APOCRYPHAL and maybe it's not: On first seeing Robert Smithson's crystalline Untitled, 1964-65, as a student in Karlsruhe, Germany, artist Katja Strunz put away her paintbrushes and began to make her own prismlike wall sculptures with...
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Tatjana Doll: Art & Public-Cabinet P.H
A withdrawal voucher from Deutsche Bank dated 6/14/05 (Ueberweisungsscbein 1 [Transfer Fund 1]) and one from 7/15/05 (Ueberweisungsschein 2 [Transfer Fund 2]) painted in oil or lacquer on cotton fabric: this form will be processed by a machine. ADDITIONAL...
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The Body Electric: Jon Kessler on Nam June Paik
I FIRST SAW Nam June Paik's work in 1977 at Documenta 6 in Kassel. Twenty years old, with two years of art school under my belt, I was hitchhiking through Europe when I came upon the art world's temporary Emerald City. The exhibition was dominated...
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"The Painted World": P.S. 1 Contemporary Art Center
As much as curator Bob Nickas structured "The Painted World" mainly around color schemes (orchestrating rooms of black, red, green, and blue paintings, with strategic chromatic anomalies only intensifying the effect and, perhaps, signifying potential)...
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The Revolution May Be Televised: Pamela M. Lee on the World Social Forum
"ANOTHER WORLD is possible": Since 2001, the World Social Forum, an international summit of social movements, NGOs, and activists, has rallied behind this slogan in its efforts to combat the advance of neoliberalism and its welter of geopolitical ills....
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"The Wall: Reshaping Contemporary Chinese Art"; Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo University at Buffalo Anderson Gallery University at Buffalo Art Gallery
"POOR CHINA!" It is June 2003; Venice is sweltering. A friend and I have traversed the Arsenale and now find ourselves standing before an installation of bright lights and ungainly statuary that is meant to evoke the chaotic dynamism of the postmillennial...
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Vedovamazzei: Praz-Delavallade
The works of Vedovamazzei (Simeone Crispino and Stella Scala) always result from an encounter with reality, either the physical reality of an object or the virtual reality of information. This exhibition, the Italian artists' first in Paris, gave viewers...
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What Does the Jellyfish Want? Bennett Simpson on the Art of Christopher Williams
I CAN'T BE ALONE IN FINDING A GREAT DEAL OF AFFECT IN THE PHOTOGRAPHS OF CHRISTOPHER WILLIAMS. This is dangerous to say, since affect in photography generally hews to subject matter--the pained look of a face, the pleasure or poignancy in a gesture--and...
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