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. 47, No. 10, Summer

Alexander Wolff: GALERIE MEZZANIN
This show, "Ausstellung fur leidenschaftlich an sich selbst Interessierte" (Exhibition for the Passionately Self-Involved), was designed to be modified. Before the opening, Alexander Wolff arranged everything himself, but in the days that followed...
Alex Bag: WHITNEY MUSEUM OF AMERICAN ART
TV SHOW HOST IN FUGUE STATE. Like LINDSAY LOHAN ESCAPES REHAB, or similar headlines in the tabloid press, the sentence seems calculated to strike terror in the heart of our republic, media dependent as it is. Make that CHILDREN'S TV SHOW HOST IN FUGUE...
Alfredo Jaar: GALERIE LELONG
Alfredo Jaar, an artist who has committed many years to examining the potentialities of art's response (and perhaps responsibility) to those at the extreme margins of life or in the crosshairs of social/political/ existential crisis, produced an unremittingly...
Andrew Lord: GLADSTONE GALLERY
The arts/crafts divide is a vexed passage; painting and sculpture versus the potter's wheel and the loom. Of recent decades the rancor that once marked these age-old oppositions has abated. Certainly, much contemporary art embraces crafts' methods--think...
Anna Boghiguian: SAFAR KHAN GALLERY
In her forty-year career as a widely respected artist, Anna Boghiguian has frequently depicted Cairo, where she was born and lives. Her 2003 book Anna's Egypt offered a personal tour via text and artwork through the neighborhoods of that city, with...
Art of Fugue: JAMES QUANDT ON LUCRECIA MARTEL'S THE HEADLESS WOMAN
ONE OF THE GREAT FILMS of the decade, Lucrecia Mattel's The Headless Woman induces a mesmeric state akin to that of its dazed eponym, tempting the audience to drift, like her, through the narrative's proliferating mysteries. Trance film, ghost story,...
Barbara Kruger: SKARSTEDT GALLERY
If ever there were a time to reflect on the recent past of a present moment, this would seem to be it. With its many uncanny parallels to and, perhaps in retrospect, prescient harbingers for our day, the '80s--that messy, sprawling decade, which seemed...
Barbara Probst: MURRAY GUY
A woman reaches for something on a coffee table. This is the core event of Barbara Probst's Exposure #56: NYC, 428 Broome Street, 06.05.08, 1:42 pm (all works 2008). Around it are layers of action that play out, as in Probst's other works, in multiple...
Carey Young: POWER PLANT CONTEMPORARY ART GALLERY
Carey Young's Everything You've Heard is Wrong, 1999, documents the artist at the Speakers' Corner in London's Hyde Park, a place practically synonymous with free speech. Standing on a small step-ladder in the middle of a crowd peppered with other...
"Cast in Bronze: French Sculpture from Renaissance to Revolution": METROPOLITAN MUSEUM OF ART
This great exhibition--it is absurd to mince adjectives--is a monumental event. Apart from the breathtaking loans, there is a daunting catalogue containing 144 entries on works by canonic figures (Goujon, Pilon, Falconet, Girardon, Coysevox, Pigalle,...
"Cezanne and Beyond": PHILADELPHIA MUSEUM OF ART
The sumptuous "Cezanne and Beyond" was that rare thing: a blockbuster show of modern painting that looks forward, not backward. In a climate where shows of the formula "Artist X and the Old Masters" have increasingly become the safe choice for museums,...
Christian Frosi: GALLERIA ZERO
The governing principle behind Christian Frosi's installations is transformation. Negating the original function of the things and tools he appropriates, the artist builds structures that appear as ensembles of objects placed in relationship to one...
"Chronicles of Absence": MUSEO TAMAYO ARTE CONTEMPORANEO
Cronicas de la ausencia (Chronicles of Absence) presents works by Rosangela Renno and Oscar Munoz, artists (from Brazil and Columbia, respectively) who appropriate images from newspapers, archives, photography studios, and albums. Most of the works...
Class Consciousness: Taraneh Fazeli on Night School
AN ANECDOTE FROM THE ART WORLD, though it could as easily have been a hostage scene from the sausage factory in Tout va bien, left on the cutting-room floor: Attendees at a panel discussion in Berlin are pooled together in a room with a television,...
Dana Schutz: ZACH FEUER GALLERY
"Missing Pictures" was Dana Schutz's twelfth solo exhibition, and it's time to stop appraising her as a prodigy. Neither instant nor sustained stardom has ruined her, and these twelve paintings evinced the same luxe, wack, et volupte she has been praised...
Dave Muller: BLUM & POE
Dave Muller's sixth solo outing at Blum & Poe was the latest chapter of the artist's ongoing project of chronicling the contents of his book-shelves and record collection. Winding its way free-associatively through Muller's youth and early fascination...
David Hilliard: CARROLL AND SONS
With the two- to five-part photographic panoramas on display here, Boston photographer David Hilliard has once again presented open-ended narratives about desire, time, and mortality. These color works are often autobiographical, depicting fathers...
David Musgrave: LUHRING AUGUSTINE
David Musgrave's art, like Seinfeld, elevates seemingly banal or arbitrary subjects to unexpected heights. In his New York solo debut, the British artist presented an austerely beautiful suite of drawings and objects in which painstakingly flawless...
Dominique Petitgand: ABBAYE DE MAUBUISSON
Each of Dominique Petitgand's sound installations begins with a drawing, a simple sketch in pen on paper that maps the placement of speakers and the space within which the visitor will experience the work. Although these rudimentary plans are never...
Donatella Landi: GALLERIA VALENTINA MONCADA
One of the few Italian artists focusing on sound as an artistic means, Donatella Landi has investigated sonic panoramas (often incorporating video and photography) since her first installation, Freihafen (Free Port), 1992, which reproduced the grave...
Erik Frydenborg: BONELLI CONTEMPORARY
Successive breakthroughs in the natural sciences gave rise to a system of graphical schema to represent the natural order--whether the planetary orbits around the sun, the life cycle of plants, or the double-helix structure of DNA. Over the years,...
Erik Thor Sandberg: CONNER CONTEMPORARY ART
Erik Thor Sandberg's six richly sculptural, masterfully executed figurative paintings in "Cyclical Nature" feature compositions both witty and, with their flagrant nudity, engagingly confrontational. More psychologically probing and viscerally introspective...
Georgia Kyriakakis: GABINETE DE ARTE RAQUEL ARNAUD
At the seashore, one can see waves break powerfully and turn into foam, at once vigorous, effervescent, and fragile, taking shape only to quickly disintegrate Georgia Kyriakakis, curiously, associates the shapes formed by such foam with those of countries...
How German Was It? Benjamin H. D. Buchloh on "Art of Two Germanys"
EXACTLY SIXTY YEARS AFTER the founding of the West German Federal Republic and the East German Democratic Republic, and exactly twenty years after the fall of the Berlin Wall, when the Western world rejoiced in mass schadenfreude at the collapse of...
In Another Country: Yoko Ono in Conversation with Rirkrit Tiravanija
Among the most poignant artworks made by Yoko Ono during her fifty-year career must be White Chess Set, 1966, in which all the pieces are white: As any game progresses, players will eventually find their sides impossible to tell apart. "Ideally," Ono...
Irina Korina: MOSCOW MUSEUM OF MODERN ART
One of the few Russian words Walter Benjamin used in the diaries he kept while in Moscow in the 1920s was remont. Apparently he found the German term for renovations too weak to convey the scope and urgency of efforts to undo the chaos wrought by revolution...
Isa Genzken: WHITECHAPEL GALLERY, LONDON
IN THIS RETROSPECTIVE of Isa Genzken, which opened in April at London's newly expanded Whitechapel Gallery, the sheer range and depth of her work becomes clear, registered not in spite of but in the reeling effects of its many glitzy surfaces. Firmly...
Jakub Kopecky and Pascal Silondi: ROXY/NOD
Time and space melted away during Udoli (The Valley), 2008, Jakub Kopecky and Pascal Silondi's cacophonous performance piece, recently staged at Roxy/NoD--an experimental venue in the middle of Old Town. Kopecky, a well-known figure in Prague's theater...
James Coleman: IRISH MUSEUM OF MODERN ART, PROJECT ARTS CENTRE, AND ROYAL HIBERNIAN ACADEMY
A collaborative venture involving three institutions, this is the first major exhibition of James Coleman's work in Ireland. It follows the successive presentation, over the past three years, of three projected image works in the Great Hall at the...
Jean-Luc Moulene: CARRE D'ART--MUSEE D'ART CONTEMPORAIN, NIMES, FRANCE
FOR THE ONGOING PROJECT "Documents," begun in the late 1990s, French artist Jean-Luc Moulene creates photographs that explore the interconnections between public commerce and art. Two well-known series within this project are "Les Filles d'Amsterdam"...
Jiro Takamatsu: HIROSHIMA CITY MUSEUM OF CONTEMPORARY ART
As a member of the important avant-garde performance group Hi Red Center in the early 1960s, Jiro Takamatsu (1936-1998) became known for humorous interventionist actions. After Hi Red Center disbanded in 1965, Takamatsu continued to work on expanding...
John F. Simon Jr.: COLLEZIONE MARAMOTTI
The centerpiece of John F. Simon Jr.'s exhibition "Outside In: Ten Years of Software Art," seems to be an explosion of the guts of the machine. The multicolor cabinet housing Visions, 2009, is painted in vivid acrylic with dynamic diamond motifs that...
John Riddy: FRITH STREET GALLERY
In the critical writing on John Riddy's photography, a divergence of interpretation emerges. For some, his images embody "spatial illusion and dreaming": They reverberate "with what is not shown or displayed" and demonstrate "photography's capacity...
Josh Brand
WHEN FIRST ENCOUNTERING Josh Brand's modestly scaled photographs, it's easy to get caught up in questions about facture: One wonders just how the works' arresting depths and subtleties of hue and contrast have been achieved. For, along with contemporaries...
Juhana Kristian Moisander: KLUUVIN GALLERIA
Juhana Kristian Moisander's exhibition "kiiras" is a case study in religious conviction--a topic that contemporary artists seldom broach, apparently seeing it as an intrusion on our properly secular ethos. The show's Finnish title refers to an evil...
Kerry Tribe: 1301 PE
In 2002, Kerry Tribe produced a book titled North Is West/South Is East: 32 Maps of Los Angeles, for which strangers, approached by the artist at LAX airport, drew maps of southern California from memory. The maps provided by local residents were generally...
Koki Tanaka: AOYAMA/MEGURO
Koki Tanaka is part of the generation of Japanese artists who emerged in the early 2000s. Responding to the economic recession and limited opportunities of the time, they turned to everyday life for moments of perceptual awakening. Using banal things...
Laura Parnes: PARTICIPANT INC
Kathy Acker's Blood and Guts in High School (1978) is a messy novel filled with nihilistic divagations and high-theory musings, juvenile drawings of cunts and cocks, unstable characters on a bombastic path of nonbecoming. Genet has a lengthy cameo,...
"l[DELTA]0": CAPC MUSEE D'ART CONTEMPORAIN
A number of recent exhibitions have reflected on 1960s psychedelic art, but "l[DELTA]0: Explorations psychedeliques en France, 1968 -[infinity]" took a radically different approach. Curators Axelle Blanc, Tiphanie Blanc, and Yann ChateigneTytelman...
"Le Grand Monde D' Andy Warhol": GALERIES NATIONALES DU GRAND PALAIS
With an ingenuous but almost untranslatable title, "Le Grand Monde d'Andy Warhol" expands on two floors of the Galeries Nationales du Grand Palais in Paris. (Translated by the museum as "Warhol's Wide World," the English title fails to capture the...
Leon Ferrari and Mira Schendel: MUSEUM OF MODERN ART, NEW YORK
A PAIR OF PHOTOGRAPHIC PORTRAITS of the artists adorn the entrance of the Museum of Modern Art's joint retrospective "Tangled Alphabets: Leon Ferrari and Mira Schendel," the first major North American survey for either of these two key figures of postwar...
Leon Kossoff: MITCHELL-INNES & NASH
Leon Kossoff's painterliness invites us to scan the image for subconscious meaning--to play on Anton Ehrenzweig's idea of the way we approach what he calls "gestalt-free painting"--and the meaning we find involves what Freud called "primary process...
Lili Reynaud Dewar: PARC SAINT LEGER CENTRE D'ART CONTEMPORAIN
"I always work in a disturbed in situ," explains French artist Lili Reynaud Dewar, whose solo show here included a large black wall that partitioned the gallery in two. Within this bisected space, which hosted video, sculpture, and photography, she...
Lindsay Seers
British artist Lindsay Seers works in a variety of media, including performance, photography, and large-scale video installation. Her recent solo exhibition, "It has to be this way," opened in January at Matt's Gallery, London, and her video Extramission...
Lost and Found: RICHARD DEMING ON KENNETH MACPHERSON'S MONKEYS' MOON
KENNETH MACPHERSON (1903-1971) has long been considered a pioneer of avant-garde film, but his reputation rested largely on hearsay, as the work itself--three short films and a feature--had mostly been lost. Of two of the shorts, Wing Beat (1927) and...
Matthew Rich: DEVENING PROJECTS + EDITIONS
Matthew Rich makes art in patchwork fashion. A pictorial quilter, he stitches--tapes, actually--imprecise geometric forms together, creating compositions that never hide the means of their production. He begins by painting individual sheets of paper...
Matt Saunders: HARRIS LIEBERMAN GALLERY
Had Warhol dropped the irony that made him who he was and embraced the romanticism that undeniably coursed through his work (and life), his art might have looked a lot like Matt Saunders's. Like the King of Pop, Saunders makes serial, photo-derived...
Michal Helfman: CARDI BLACK BOX
An ideal title for Israeli artist Michal Helfman's recent show might be "Mirage," since it seemed to revolve around the distortion and inversion of images. Upon entering the ground floor of the gallery, visitors were greeted by a sequence of jagged...
Mungo Thomson: JOHN CONNELLY PRESENTS
Elliptical has many meanings, from oval, egg-shaped, or oviform to cryptic, ambiguous, or obscure. It might also denote something that has been abridged or is laconic about its means (which is to say nothing of its effects). Less descriptive than functional,...
Nate Lowman: MACCARONE
In his second solo show at Maccarone, Nate Lowman presented an exhibition in two parts, the first of which devolved on the Smiley Face icon. This installation consisted mostly of paintings that clustered tightly on two walls of the gallery's expansive...
Nina Beier and Marie Lund: CROY NIELSEN
This first show at Croy Nielsen by Danish artists Nina Beier and Marie Lund was a tough case. Not because the four works they presented under the title "Permanent Collection" came off as particularly difficult to decipher. On the contrary, it's because...
"Nine Lives: Visionary Artists from L.A.": HAMMER MUSEUM, LOS ANGELES
A PAINTING BY LLYN FOULKES titled The Lost Frontier was the first thing one saw on entering "Nine Lives: Visionary Artists from L.A."--the fifth installment of the Hammer Museum's series of biannual exhibitions devoted to delivering a Zeitgeist overview...
Open Work: Lynne Cooke on Hanne Darboven (1941-2009)
ONE AFTERNOON, SOMETIME in the mid-1980s, I paid a visit to Leo Castelli's gallery on West Broadway to see a Hanne Darboven show. The only other person in the room at that moment was the artist herself, whom I instantly recognized from photographs....
Out of the Dark: BRUCE JENKINS ON PAUL SHARITS
ONE OF THE FEW MISFIRES in the Whitney's landmark 2001 exhibition "Into the Light: The Projected Image in American Art 1964-1977" was its partial reconstruction of Paul Sharits's 1975 film installation Shutter Interface. While the work was accorded...
Paul Shambroom: UNIVERSITY ART MUSEUM AT CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY, LONG BEACH
I FIRST SAW PHOTOGRAPHS from Paul Shambroom's "Nuclear Weapons" series, 1992-2001, in 1995, just prior to the passage of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty. Shambroom's frank documentary depictions of places glimpsed by most of us only in nightmares--high-security...
Peter Saul: TALKS ABOUT HIS RECENT WORK
WHAT DO YOU DO WITH PETER SAUL? He is an anomaly in relation to everything except himself, wearing his outsider status as a badge of honor. Indeed, it is perhaps his resolute consistency that most warrants our recognition today: Throughout artistic...
Renata Lucas
TO CREATE HER WORK Cruzamento (Crossing), first realized in 2003 in Rio de Janeiro and reprised in Sao Paulo in 2004, artist Renata Lucas repaves a busy intersection with plywood--a seemingly simple gesture with complex ramifications. Layered on top...
Rudolf Stingel: PAULA COOPER GALLERY
Rudolf Stingel's 2005 exhibition at Paula Cooper consisted of one work, a painting of his gallerist based on a Robert Mapplethorpe portrait. Installed on the back wall of Cooper's cavernous space, whose floors were covered with white panels that recorded...
Ry Rocklen: MARC JANCOU CONTEMPORARY
Los Angeles artist Ry Rocklen's fascination with the "soul residue" of discarded objects leads him to create sculptures that, while not anthropomorphic, possess many human qualities: tenderness, a complicated history, resilience despite apparent fragility....
Sergio De Loof: MIAU MIAU
A prince and a pauper, Sergio De Loof has been a luminary in the Buenos Aires scene since the 1980s, an artist with an unusual ability to captivate the fashion world, the underground, and the intellectual establishment. He founded mythical bars like...
Sharjah Biennial 9: VARIOUS VENUES, SHARJAH, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES
"PROVISIONS FOR THE FUTURE," the ninth edition of the Sharjah Biennial, raised a host of unsettling if necessary questions typically repressed by the protocols of the global biennial circuit--though in light of the stated ambitions for the show, this...
Sherman Sam: RUBICON GALLERY
Sherman Sam's paintings are small--none of the eight exhibited in his most recent exhibition, "Let's stay together," reach sixteen inches in either direction--but you can easily get lost in them. They are labyrinths in hyperspace, taking unexpected...
Simryn Gill: TRACY WILLIAMS, LTD
The sculptures and photographs in Sydney-based Malaysian artist Simryn Gill's recent exhibition, like her project "Standing still," 2000-2003, a series of photographs documenting derelict properties throughout Southeast Asia, and Garland, 2006, a selection...
Situation Hacker: Wayne Koestenbaum on the Art of Ryan Trecartin
IMAGINE SLASHER FILMS WITHOUT BLOOD; porn without nudity; the Sistine Chapel without God; the New York Stock Exchange without capital. Pretend that Hieronymus Bosch's intermeshed figures could text. Ryan Trecartin's videos depict a vertiginous world...
Sound Design: Maria Gough on "Tango with Cows"
IT WAS NOT SO LONG AGO that museum exhibitions devoted to the historical avant-gardes--Futurism, Dada, Constructivism, Surrealism, and so forth--were all painting and no paper. The illustrated book and other forms of print media that had posited the...
Speech Disorder: Claire Bishop on Tania Bruguera at the 10th Havana Biennial
WHENEVER PEOPLE LAMENT the homogenization of global biennials, a special case should be made for Havana's. Located in a country suffering the longest economic blockade in modern history, the Havana Biennial has, since its inception in 1984, placed...
"The Generational: Younger Than Jesus": NEW MUSEUM, NEW YORK
ONE OF THE STANDOUT PIECES in "Younger than Jesus"--the New Museum's inaugural triennial for artists under the fateful age of thirty-three--is Luke Fowler's What You See Is Where You're At, 2001, a video documenting schizophrenia treatments developed...
The Personal Effects of Seth Price
THE VOLUME IS SLIM AND BLACK and, measuring just six by eight inches, clearly designed for portability. It would slip easily into a coat pocket or knapsack. And that, if the simple phrase adorning its cover is any indication, is precisely what the...
"Transformations": MKGALERIE
Sometimes it is hard to see the crisis that you are in. Everybody in Berlin seems to be worrying about how many of the city's 450 gallerieswill be closing and which big players will go. Meanwhile, at one of the smaller and fairly new spaces, the Berlin...
Value Systems
AT ISSUE IN SO MANY SYSTEMIC DILEMMAS facing the United States today--whether in banking, health care, or energy infrastructure--is a fundamental economic question: How can one generate new sources of value and wealth? Our ability to skirt the long...
"Voids: A Retrospective": CENTRE POMPIDOU
I keep wishing "Vides: Une Retrospective'' (Voids: A Retrospective) were a work of art, but it wasn't. It aimed to be a retrospective survey. The curators--John Armleder, Mai-Thu Perret, Mathieu Copeland, Gustav Metzger, and Clive Phillpot (along with...
"Voodoo": RIFLEMAKER
True story: I took a disaffected, directionless high school senior to the opening of "Voodoo," and, wildly enthused by this show, she applied to art school the next day. That's how inspirational this gem of a group exhibition was. "Voodoo: Hoochie...
Wang Guangle: BEIJING COMMUNE
Wang Guangle makes artworks in various typologies. His "Terrazzo" series, 2002-, re-creates in oil or acrylic paint a distinctive Chinese floor material. Terrazzo 200807, 2008, has an allover pattern; Terrazzo 200808, 2008, and Terrazzo 090105, 2009,...
Well-Tempered Piano
Renowned for elegant galleries that defer to their contents, Renzo Piano has quietly become the most prolific designer of art museums around the globe--signaling a decisive shift in taste among museum patrons from the bold to the more decorous. To...
What's That Hanging on My Bicycle? Christopher Williams on Coosje Van Bruggen (1942-2009)
"PREPARE YOURSELF TO SPEAK with Coosje van Bruggen," the assistant on the other end of the line said. Little did I know what I was preparing myself for. The call came after I had first met Coosje at the Chateau Marmont in Los Angeles in 1981. I had...
Xavier Cha: TAXTER & SPENGEMANN
Over the past few years, Xavier Cha has developed a quasi-mythic reputation for her strange, nearly gauche, performances. In her exhibition "Holiday Cruise!" in 2006, for example, she appeared in several ways: lounging in an enormous cornucopia; as...
Yasue Maetake: FREDRIC SNITZER GALLERY
Do you believe in magic? If you had visited Japanese-born Yasue Maetake's first solo show in Miami, you might have begun to. For "Sculpture Without a Skin," the New York-based artist used parts of dead animals to make spindly sculptures that are so...
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