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. 51, No. 8, April

Adapted for the Screen: Tony Pipolo on David Gatten's the Extravagant Shadows
ABOUT HALFWAY THROUGH David Gatten's new work (which premiered last fall in the New York Film Festival's Views from the Avant-Garde and will return to Lincoln Center this month), the text of a protracted narrative appears on the screen, in which a...
Ahmet Ogut
IN 1961. President Cemal Gursel of Turkey commissioned engineers to design an automobile that could be produced entirely in that country. The first prototypes of the car, grandiloquently called the "Devrim" ("revolution"), were duly developed, and...
Alighiero Boetti: Gladstone Gallery
In Mi fuma il cervello (Autoritratto) (My Mind is Burning [Self-Portrait]), 1993, a work made the year before his death, Alighiero Boetti, portrays himself in bronze as a lean fellow holding a garden hose aloft. Steam rises as water hits the heated...
Amalia Pica: Mit List Visual Arts Center
In her first major museum exhibition in the United States, Amalia Pica considers the urgency of communication and our continual experience of its failure. Honing this discussion, the London-based Argentinean deliberates on the relationship between...
Amnon Ben-Ami: Bezalel/yaffo 23
In "Zephyr," an exhibition bringing together a decade of work, Amnon Ben-Ami stealthily assumed an aesthetic nonchalance to suggest how difficult it is to communicate ideas and remind us of how intricate the processes of looking and knowing can be....
Amy Cutler: Leslie Tonkonow Artworks + Projects
A few years back at this gallery, Amy Cutler showed a piece called Alterations, 2007, which departed obviously from the approach for which she was known in that it was an installation, a room-size sculpture. Cutler had made her name with fine-boned...
An Embarrassment of Riches: James Quandt on the Films of Terrence Malick
Will To the Wonder--or TO THE WONDER, as the film's end credits have it--finally dispel the aura of reverence that has settled over the cinema of Terrence Malick? The late creation of an artist can act as an alembic, concentrating and thereby heightening...
Anne Rorimer
MICHAEL ASHER developed his renowned and innovative practice by originating, with others of his generation, a site-specific way of working. He has also been labeled one of the founders of so-called institutional critique--a potentially misleading term,...
Antonio Calderara: Annemarie Verna Galerie
The first work one saw after entering this show was a well-considered introduction to the art of Antonio Calderara (1903-1978): a small, slightly vertical composition of rectangles reminiscent of the terrain around Lake Orta in the far north of Italy,...
Aurelien Froment: Mother's Tankstation
You can learn a lot watching Aurelien Froment's videos. The works of this Dublin-based Frenchman have a determinedly instructional disposition, showing and telling about a wide range of unrelated subjects. Consider two of his widely shown previous...
Between Two Worlds: Maria Antonella Pelizzari on the Art of Luigi Ghirri
IMAGINE ENTERING A DARK ROOM in which the landscape outside appears slowly and upside down. Everything you know becomes strange and intimate, and it takes time to realize that you are immersed in a projection that endows a new sense of being in the...
Call Me Lucien
THERE'S NO DENYING the power of Lucien Castaing-Taylor and Verena Paravel's splashy shock expressionism. Leviathan--or [??], as it appears, white on black, in the movie's titles--is not only named for the biblical sea monster; this account of commercial...
Carmen Herrera: Lisson Gallery
The combinatorial possibilities of flat geometric shapes are nearly infinite. Over the course of her long career, Carmen Herrera has filled thousands of sheets of tracing paper, drawing innumerable variations based on mathematical logic. This Cuban-American...
Cover Notes: Bob Nickas on X-TG's Desertshore/The Final Report
WHEN A SONG OR A PIECE OF MUSIC is reimagined, we find ourselves in a loop, where points in time echo one another and reverberate, as if the original and the interpretation simultaneously emerge from speakers positioned to our left and right: the auditory...
Cyprien Gaillard: MoMA PS1
The bold beating heart of "The Crystal World," Cyprien Gaillard's first solo exhibition at a museum in New York, was a work that viewers could hear before they could see it. A snatch of an old David Gray song, endlessly repeating the name of an ancient...
Daniel Jacoby: 1646
Daniel Jacoby turns his back on many of the art world's traditional assumptions. His work is in constant flux, his installations characterized by complex shifts between ideas, images, and forms and a methodology that dodges the usual dynamics of production...
David Maljkovic: Van Abbemuseum
A few short years ago, there appeared to be substantial common ground shared by certain artists of different nationalities from the former Eastern Bloc. At least from a distance, this group, who came of age in the post-Communist 1990s, seemed to similarly...
Divine Comedies: Melissa Anderson on the Films of Jacques Demy
"I'M TRYING TO CREATE A WORLD IN MY FILMS;" Jacques Demy once said. This demiurge (Demy-urge?) transformed humdrum provincial port towns into florid, fantastic realms. Several of his works were inspired by myths or fairy tales; even those that weren't...
Dunja Herzog and G. Kung: Ausstellungsraum Klingental
Materials and their metamorphoses might have been the casual thesis of "Under a hunch," organized by Rahel Schelker. This subtle yet convincing exhibition of works by Dunja Herzog and G. Kung (with a singular assist by an elder, Terry Fox, and his...
Fernanda Gomes: Casa De Cultura Laura Alvim
It may be surprising to learn that Fernanda Gomes's career began in the late l980s, when in Brazil, as elsewhere, the artistic scene was dominated by neo-expressionist painting. Some of her objects may be handmade, and even hanclpa jilted, but there...
Fiona Connor: 1301PE
"Bare Use," a solo show at 1301PE by Los Angeles-based artist Fiona Connor, presented uncanny replicas of thirteen charmingly dull, awkwardly nondescript objects--a drinking fountain, a patio umbrella, a linen hamper, among other items--found at the...
Gela Patashuri
IN PRE-SOVIET TIMES, art in Tbilisi was freely shown in cafes and taverns, but until very recently, nothing comparable had existed. When my friends Sergei Tcherepnin and Ei Arakawa came to visit in the summer of 2009, I gave them a tour of my favorite...
Geraldo De Barros: Photographers' Gallery
Brazilian artist Geraklo de Barros's first UK show, "What Remains," is a beautiful and tightly focused exhibition curated by Isobel Whitelegg of Nottingham Contemporary and Karen McQuaid of the Photographers' Gallery. One of Brazil's pioneering avant-gardists,...
Heinrich Dunst: Galerie Nachst St. Stephan Rosemarie Schwarzwalder
It may seem far-fetched to describe a visit to a Conceptual art exhibition as an Alice in Wonderland experience. If the effect of Heinrich Dunst's show was somewhat dizzying or disorienting, it was not because the artist had somehow given up his practice...
Ignacio Uriarte: The Drawing Center
Ignacio Uriarte never got the memo explaining that artists often keep two resumes: one listing the exhibitions, degrees, reviews, and awards that comprise an artist's career, and a second cataloging the stints--as bartender, computer programmer, proofreader,...
Irena Popiashvili
OUR UNDERSTANDING of twentieth-century Georgian art is still dominated by one artist: Niko Pirosmani (1862-1918), a self-taught painter who was discovered in the early 1900s and whose reputation was revived and cemented by the Soviets in the '60s....
Joan Snyder: Gering & Lopez Gallery
An artist's work can change a lot over the course of his or her career, but the best artists always remain themselves. I hadn't realized just how much this is true of Joan Snyder until I saw this selection of thirty-three works, "Symphony: Early Works...
Jon Pestoni: David Kordansky Gallery
Although this first hometown solo show by artist Jon Pestoni was ostensibly an exhibition of formally motivated abstract compositions, the broad swaths of bold, often dry-brushed color that were characteristic of its seventeen medium- to large-scale...
Jorge Queiroz: Fundacao Carmona E Costa
While many artists like to claim that the process is the most important part of their work, this assertion all too often becomes an excuse to disregard its visual quality. For Jorge Queiroz, however, process is the key to the visual power of his work....
Katja Novitskova: Kraupa-Tuskany
The two most eye-catching objects in Katja Novitskova's recent show were images of animals mounted on aluminum cutouts: a stately pair of emperor penguins standing across from each other (Approximation I; all works 2012) and the head of a young giraffe...
Ketuta Alexi-Meskhishvili
WHEN I WAS A CHILD, the filmmaker Sergei Paradjanov made me a doll. An assemblage of mismatched parts, it wore a hand-sewn brown velvet dress and crocheted white tights and had an open mouth that was missing a few porcelain teeth. It hung next to my...
Kevin Cooley: The Boiler
Kevin Cooley's video Skyward, 2012, has a simple premise: It shows the perspective of a camera mounted to the roof of a car and pointed at a bright, unclouded sky. On a near-ten-minute loop, the video takes us under streetlights, palm trees, and the...
Kjetil Traedal Thorsen
Norwegian architect Kjetil Traedal Thorsen is a founding principal of Snohetta, an Osloand New York-based practice that has designed such renowned structures as the Oslo Opera House and the Bibliotheca Alexandrina in Egypt. Current projects include...
Kochi-Muziris Biennale 2012: Various Venues, Kochi, India
"THE PAST IS A FOREIGN COUNTRY: they do things differently there." This is the famous first line of L. P. Hartley's novel The Go-Between, published in London in 1953, but it could have easily been a description of India's first biennial, in 2012-13....
Llyn Foulkes: Hammer Museum, Los Angeles
WE CAN'T ALL BE GOOD LOOKING: This ugly truth is written in the margin of a drawing, inked around 1949, by a teenage Llyn Foulkes. Fourteen or fifteen years old, the aspiring cartoonist sketches six goon-like men whose jowls droop, nostrils flare,...
Luca Francesconi: Fluxia
Visitors to Luca Francesconi's recent solo show "Geode Cupa" were welcomed by Untitled (Eel) (all works 2013), a metal fishhook hung from a linen thread anchored to the ceiling and supporting a damp, dripping eel skin. Moving on, one couldn't help...
Material Differences: Nikoloz Japaridze on Georgian Architecture
A SUPERCATHEDRAL IN TBILISI, a massive new parliament dome in kutaisi, the first building of the new planned city of Lazika: Recent years have seen an incredible period of construction in Georgia, during which ambitious new buildings such as these...
Merlin James: GALERIE LES FILLES DU CALVAIRE
Spanning more than fifteen years, the twenty-one works collected in Merlin James's exhibition "Painting" epitomize his signature blend of dizzyingly diverse subjects, styles, and techniques. From a faux-naive still life with bird rendered in thick...
Michael Asher 1943-2012
JOHN BALDESSARI THE RECENT NEWS that the skeleton of King Richard III was unearthed in a parking lot in Leicester, UK, somehow reminds me of the work of Michael Asher. Michael would often go back in time to investigate art institutions and to unearth...
Mika Rottenberg: Magasin 3
Mika Rottenberg is a serial absurdist, as amply demonstrated by her recent exhibition "Sneeze to Squeeze," which encompasses more than a decade of work. Take her most recent video, Sneeze, 2012. It's a send-up, and simplicity itself: Three men in business...
Mirror Travel: Julian Rose on Sarah Oppenheimer's W-120301, 2012
BREAKING THROUGH A WALL might have once seemed like a radical gesture, but by now it has become something of a cliche. From the pockmarked cavities of Lawrence Weiner's 1968 A WALL CRATERED BY A SINGLE SHOTGUN BLAST, to the open gap in the facade of...
Nam June Paik: Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, DC
THE CATALOGUE for "Nam June Paik: Global Visionary" opens by comparing the artist with Picasso, claiming that because of his prescience and influence, the former is to the second half of the twentieth century what the latter is to the first half. If...
Nancy Dwyer: Fisher Landau Center for Art
Which of these things is not like the other: history painting, portraiture, landscape, still life, words? Even as late as 1970, one still assumed that "studio majors" would find "words" misplaced on a list of the academic genres--even if, by then,...
Negative Capabilities: Branden W. Joseph on Claes Oldenburg and Jackson Pollock
ANYONE RESEARCHING CLAES OLDENBURG will eventually stumble across Adrian Henri's 1974 volume Total Art: Environments, Happenings, and Performance. Riddled with myth and misinformation and unconvincingly associating phenomena ranging from seventeenth-century...
Nina Konnemann: Halle Fur Kunst Luneburg
The "Illuminations" of Blackpool have been a tradition for more than 120 years. An English seaside town that drew early waves of mass tourism, Blackpool reinvented itself--after a slow season in 1879--as an early adapter of electrification. Since then,...
Organized Movement: Oana Sanziana Marian on Performance Art and Politics in Romania
OF THE VARIOUS TYPES OF NEGLECT, one is almost kind: letting something be, even treeing it by virtue of abandonment. Another form is aggressive, a traumatizing and annulling intervention on the part of a powerful entity imposing silence and erasure...
Osvaldo Romberg: Henrique Faria Fine Art
Osvaldo Romberg dedicated this exhibition to Josef Albers and Raul Lozza, the latter of whom was a fellow Argentinean and the founder, in 1947, of Perceptismo, a derivative of Concretismo. The aim of Perceptismo, in Lozza's words, was to emphasize...
"Painting": The Box
Kudos to the director of the Box, Mara McCarthy, who, with this timely group show, wrested the discipline from cliche. Featuring the work of eleven artists from the early 1950s to the present, "Painting" considered its titular subject not just as material...
Peter Wachtler: Ludlow 38
How do we describe our everyday existence? Colloquially, we might cheekily use the term rat race. In his first US exhibition, "B.A.C.K.," German-born, Brussels-based artist Peter Wachtler seemed to take up this idiom, presenting a cartoon that addresses...
Peter Young: Museum of Contemporary Art
Peter Young is often spoken of as a neglected artist, having fallen into obscurity after he abandoned New York and the art world in 1969, at the zenith of his renown, to wander the world, commune with Indian tribes, paint on canvases stretched over...
Philippe Vandenberg: Hauser & Wirth
At heart of the Philippe Vandenberg's work is a primal poetry, one that emerges both from the images he brought to life and from his formal invention. Mysterious figures--naked primitive men surrounded by animals (horned bulls, wolves, lions, donkeys)--populate...
Ragnar Kjartansson: Luhring Augustine
As it has threaded itself into the fabric of contemporary practice and discourse over the past decade and a half, the notion of "relational aesthetics" has come, fairly or not, to be almost exclusively associated with efforts to reimagine the sociospatial...
R. H. Quaytman: The Renaissance Society at the University of Chicago
The screenprinted and gessoed varnished panels of R. H. Quaytman speak foremost, perhaps, to a discourse of painting, but also to that of photography, sculpture (the panels are thick, often painted on multiple sides, and at times may be physically...
Sergei Tcherepnin
IN MAY 1917, with Russia in the throes of revolution, a group of Georgian cultural patrons established the Tbilisi State Conservatoire, the first institution of higher learning in the Caucasus. My great-grandfather Nikolai Tcherepnin (who composed...
Shannon Ebner: Wallspace
To some extent, Shannon Ebner's work has always played with thresholds of legibility. A case in point, the large-scale print Instrumentals (all works cited, 2013) was hung in the back room of her recent exhibition at Wallspace, where it spellbound...
Silent Partners: Richard Meyer on "Intimate Collaborations"
SEVERAL YEARS AGO, I tried to persuade the artist Barbara Kruger to participate in an event I was organizing at the University of Southern California called "Contemporary Conversations." Seeking to move beyond the staid format of most academic conferences,...
Steve Bishop: Carlos/ishikawa
The title of Steve Bishop's exhibition "An Escalator Can Never Break, It Can Only Become Stairs" hints that machines may lead "lives" of their own, which carry on even after the plug has been pulled. And indeed, the works in the show bore out this...
Techniques of Improvisation: Joanna Warsza on Art and Urbanism in Georgia
"GEORGIA IS LIKE ITALY GONE MARXIST." Georgians have often used this bon mot to introduce their small post-Soviet state to foreigners, for whom the country is still largely a blind spot on the cultural and geopolitical map. Although Georgia is currently...
The Great Experiment: Nana Kipiani on Georgian Modernism
Secluded behind their inaccessible languages, the small European nations (their life, their history, their culture) are very ill known; people think, naturally enough, that this is the principal handicap to international recognition of their art. But...
The Worms Have Turned: Amy Taubin on Shane Carruth's Upstream Color
SOME MOVIES ARE SO SENSORIALLY and emotionally resonant that when one leaves the theater, the on-screen world seems to persist, skewing one's relationship to sights and sounds, space and time. After I saw Shane Carruth's Upstream Color, I felt as if...
Trevor Paglen: Metro Pictures
THE END OF THE SPACE AGE: SO proclaims the cover of a recent issue of The Economist, which Trevor Paglen has photographed and blown up to movie-poster size. If ever there was a moment to reassess the utopian drive to exceed the envelope of Earth, now...
Venture Capital: Daniel Baumann on Curating in Georgia
"ARE YOU MOTHER THERESA?" an artist asked me in 2005. "Is that why you're doing a show in Tbilisi? A Swiss helping a former Soviet colony?" Well, no--it was to escape the narrowness of the contemporary art world. And it was a reaction against an art...
Wato Tsereteli
IN 2008, the artist Jean Dupuy visited Tbilisi and gave me a drawing as a gift. It is sketched on A5 paper and depicts a pencil with an eraser. On the pencil is written: THINK & SUGGEST. This sentence, like a blessing, has been a constant reminder...
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