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. 54, No. 6, February

Adult Contemporary: Cat Kron on Justin Bieber
BIEBER FEVER, largely dormant these past few years, has resurfaced in recent months, but the virus has mutated into a more vital strain. With his album Purpose, released this past fall, Justin Bieber has cast off the bad-boy affect of his teens, which...
Ajay Kurian: Rowhouse Project
BALTIMORE Ajay Kurian ROWHOUSE PROJECT At the recent exhibition of Mike Kelley's "Kandor" series at Hauser & Wirth in New York, it was easy to forget that these seductive glass-enclosed resin cityscapes--essentially overwrought snow globes--were...
Alex Bag: Institute of Contemporary Art
MIAMI Alex Bag INSTITUTE OF CONTEMPORARY ART For Alex Bag's solo show, which opened in concert with Art Basel Miami Beach this past December, the art-establishment farceur reprised her 2001 mockumentary about the fictional pimp-cum-cultural...
Alfred Leslie: Allan Stone Projects
Alfred Leslie ALLAN STONE PROJECTS During the early 1950s, many considered the abstract painters Alfred Leslie and Harry Jackson to be the heirs apparent to Jackson Pollock and Willem de Kooning, though the famous pair's close friends and colleagues...
Andrea Crespo: Swiss Institute
Andrea Crespo SWISS INSTITUTE Cynthia and Celinde share a body. They have two heads, three legs, a slightly widened torso, and sixteen amphibian-like toes. Wearing a midriff-exposing tank top and short shorts, the two are rendered simply, as...
A Pavilion of One's Own: Siona Wilson on to the Editor of Amateur Photographer
THERE IS A STRANGE IRONY in an institution like New York's Museum of Modern Art presenting Mark Fell and Luke Fowler's film To the Editor of Amateur Photographer (2014), as indeed MOMA did this past November under the auspices of its Modern Mondays...
Army Camp: Melissa Anderson on Benjamin Crotty's Fort Buchanan
SOAPY, SEXED-UP, AND ANARCHIC, Benjamin Crotty's Fort Buchanan may be the only military-spouses comic melodrama as indebted to the Lifetime channel as it is to the oeuvre of Eric Rohmer. Despite these pronounced influences, though, Crotty's riotous...
"Assisted": Kavi Gupta
CHICAGO "Assisted" KAVI GUPTA "Assisted," a vibrant group exhibition curated by Jessica Stockholder, was predominantly installed on the second floor of Kavi Gupta, above Stockholder's concurrent solo show "Door Hinges." Many of the artists...
B. Wurtz: Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art
GATESHEAD, UK B. Wurtz BALTIC CENTRE FOR CONTEMPORARY ART KNOW THYSELF, reads a 1992 B. Wurtz assemblage, Untitled (sock piece #7). The Delphic maxim is scrawled on a piece of canvas flanked by a pair of mauve tube socks. Is the artist talking...
Carol Rama: 1918-2015
ALL HER LIFE, Carol Rama stuck her tongue out. To the bigots, the fascists (from Mussolini to Berlusconi), the petit bourgeois patriarchs, the art world--to convention in general. Sticking out your tongue is childish, provocative; but it is also the...
Christine Sun Kim: Carroll/Fletcher
Christine Sun Kim CARROLL/FLETCHER In a recent TED Talk, Christine Sun Kim commented that, "As a deaf person living in a world of sound, it's as if I was living in a foreign country, blindly following its rules, customs, behaviors, and norms...
Cinthia Marcelle: Silvia Cintra + Box 4
RIO DA JANEIRO Cinthia Marcelle SILVIA CINTRA + BOX 4 These days, viewers have to enter art galleries ready for anything. And yet there are still certain basic things they usually do expect to find, such as explanatory shortcuts: either a...
Dale Frank: Neon Parc
Dale Frank NEON PARC In his latest show, Dale Frank, an Australian artist with an extensive exhibition history at home and abroad, fuses his signature pooled-resin painting techniques with eye-popping optical experiments, assisted readymades,...
Daniel Steegmann Mangrane: Mendes Wood DM
SAO PAOLO Daniel Steegmann Mangrane MENDES WOOD DM Daniel Steegmann Mangrane's exhibition "Kingdom of all the animals and all the beasts is my name" took its cue from a particular area near Rio de Janeiro, the city where he has been based...
Data Driven: Alena J. Williams on "The World of Charles and Ray Eames"
The exhibition emphasizes that the Eameses were not just designers but also makers and tinkerers of extraordinary range, consummately engaged with visuality, interface, and interaction. BEGINNING WITH the acclaimed 1999-2002 traveling exhibition...
David Benjamin Sherry: Moran Bondaroff
LOS ANGELES David Benjamin Sherry MORAN BONDAROFF For his third solo show in Los Angeles, David Benjamin Sherry presented a series of nearly two dozen photographs of the American West. As with his past work, the large-scale prints were made...
Diana Thater: Los Angeles County Museum of Art
Diana Thater LOS ANGELES COUNTY MUSEUM OF ART "The Sympathetic Imagination"--a title taken from J. M. Coetzee's Elizabeth Costello (2003)--aptly describes both the sensibility that runs through Diana Thater's practice and the artist's careful...
Frank Auerbach: Tate Britain
LONDON Frank Auerbach TATE BRITAIN Frank Auerbach's unambiguously palpable paintings keep getting more mysterious the more I look at them. T. J. Clark, in a characteristically rich, knotty, and self-dramatizing essay for the catalogue of this...
Frank Stella: Whitney Museum of American Art, New York
Frank Stella WHITNEY MUSEUM OF AMERICAN ART, NEW YORK A RETROSPECTIVE EXHIBITION presupposes an identifiable individual as the author of its contents. The philosopher Mark Johnston, however, cautions that we may place too much weight on this...
Hanne Mugaas
Hanne Mugaas is the director and curator of Kunsthall Stavanger in Norway, where she has organized exhibitions by such artists as Judith Bernstein, Nicolas Party, and Torbjorn Rodland. This year, she will present projects with Sascha Braunig, Morten...
H. C. Westermann: Venus
H. C. Westermann VENUS Lined three deep on a massive table, the H. C. Westermann sculptures in this exhibition were stunning in their craftsmanship, blistering in their satire, and sometimes, as in the case of Walnut Box, 1964--a walnut box filled...
Ian Cheng: Pilar Corrias Gallery
Ian Cheng PILAR CORRIAS GALLERY Ian Cheng has described his craft as the sculpting of behavior: The figures that populate his virtual worlds are digital objects endowed--programmed--with tendencies and protocols that vary their interactions while...
Igor Jesus: Galeria Filomena Soares
LISBON Igor Jesus GALERIA FILOMENA SOARES When Igor Jesus conceives an exhibition, he begins with an overall approach to the space in which he will be showing, and to the process by which he must transform it in order to achieve his objectives....
Inge Krause: Galerie Mathias Guntner
Inge Krause GALERIE MATHIAS GUNTNER The exhibition's title is prosaic, even a bit curt: "Something to Look At"---nothing more, nothing less. But taken at its word, it is quite apposite: To look at Inge Krause's pictures is to experience a sort...
Inside Information: Martha Buskirk on "Data Drift"
TWENTY-FIRST-CENTURY lives are inescapably defined by the data generated through an endless accumulation of transactions and actions, no matter how minor. Indeed, many denizens of the developed world find themselves enmeshed in a net of information...
Isabelle Cornaro: Balice Hertling
Isabelle Cornaro BALICE HERTLING Isabelle Cornaro's exhibition "Homonymes IV," the latest in a series that began in 2010 at this same gallery, included four bas-reliefs: three in shades of gray and one, on the opposite wall, in black. These inverted...
James Welling: David Zwirner
James Welling DAVID ZWIRNER The title of James Welling's show--"Choreograph"--suggests an affinity between the artist's principal medium, photography, and dance. If the former's etymology is meant to convey the act of drawing with light (the...
Jane Freilicher: Tibor De Nagy
Jane Freilicher TIBOR DE NAGY "She is not dangerous or rare, / adventure precedes her like a train, / her beauty is general, as sun and air / are secretly near, like Jane." So wrote Frank O'Hara in an ode to Jane Freilicher that ably describes...
Jason Simon: Callicoon Fine Arts
Jason Simon CALLICOON FINE ARTS In an age when the entire history of recorded music is just a click away, it's tempting to dismiss radio as a hopelessly antiquated medium. After all, why rely on a DJ when Spotify and iTunes allow you to compile...
Jean Tinguely: Gladstone Gallery
NEW YORK Jean Tinguely GLADSTONE GALLERY Jean Tinguely (1925-1991) was a Swiss-born artist of singular though shifting reputation. His special place in American art owes much to his close connection, both stylistic and personal, to our great...
Joan Mitchell: Kunsthaus Bregenz, Austria
Joan Mitchell KUNSTHAUS BREGENZ, AUSTRIA GESTURE, LIKE EMOTION (or affect, easier to swallow for some reason), is back, but we're not much better at talking about it than we were in previous go-rounds with AbEx, Informel, etc. We still discriminate...
Josh Tonsfeldt: Simon Preston Gallery
Josh Tonsfeldt SIMON PRESTON GALLERY In Josh Tonsfeldt's recent exhibition "Adrenaline," images had a curious, often fugitive relationship to their sources, supports, and meanings. The New York-based artist prints photographs onto a variety of...
Kate Newby: Laurel Doody
Kate Newby LAUREL DOODY "The main thing is to tell a story," Frank O'Hara declares in "Fantasy," which appeared in his seminal 1964 collection Lunch Poems. In the text, O'Hara slaloms back and forth between daydreams of Helmut Dantine, the Nazi...
Katy Grannan: Salon 94
Katy Grannan SALON 94 Times are tough out there, but they look even tougher than in most places in Modesto, California. At least that's how it appears in the works that made up Katy Grannan's recent exhibition "Hundreds of Sparrows." Is this...
Keys to the Kingdom: Linda Rodriguez on "Kongo: Power and Majesty"
LOOKING AT two elephant tusks in the exhibition "Kongo: Power and Majesty," we began to see so much more than was at first visible: Carvings in a sixteenth-century specimen intersect in elaborate looping knots around spiraling bands, while in another--this...
"Korea Now!" Musee Des Arts Decoratifs
"Korea Now!" MUSEE DES ARTS DECORATIFS "Those women in Seoul were like the girls I grew up with. They just wanted a lipstick that could make them feel they might belong in a bigger town," writes Andrew O'Hagan, in a recent profile of Karl Lagerfeld...
Kwan Sheung Chi: Project Fulfill Art Space
Kwan Sheung Chi PROJECT FULFILL ART SPACE It's never been easy to draw the line between life and art in Kwan Sheung Chi's work. Throughout his fifteen-year career, the Hong Kong-based artist has consistently found inspiration in the humdrum of...
Lost and Found: Michael Lobel on Susan Weil and Robert Rauschenberg's Blueprints
WRITING IN THESE PAGES IN 1972, the critic Leo Steinberg famously heralded the radical rupture instigated by ROBERT RAUSCHENBERG'S art. Rauschenberg's "picture planes," dense accumulations of things and images, dispensed with the transcendent weightlessness...
Luciano Fabro: Galleria Christian Stein
Luciano Fabro GALLERIA CHRISTIAN STEIN These two shows, at both Galleria Christian Stein locations, in central Milan and in the suburb of Pero, constitute a veritable retrospective of the work of Luciano Fabro (1936-2007). The first venue almost...
Magnus Plessen: MAI 36 Galerie
ZURICH Magnus Plessen MAI 36 GALERIE First as tragedy, then as finish? Foremost slick and somewhat antiseptic, Magnus Plessen's latest paintings, exhibited under the title "nineteen hundred fourteen," seek to also bear historical weight. Since...
Moving Targets: Stephen Squibb on the Work of Laura Poitras
WHAT DOES IT FEEL LIKE to look up at the night sky and know that a Predator drone might be directly overhead? In her documentaries--most famously, the explosive CITIZENFOUR--LAURA POITRAS unsparingly sheds light on the post-9/11 world, from the chaos...
Natalia Zaluska: Christine Konig Galerie
VIENNA Natalia Zaluska CHRISTINE KONIG GALERIE Some populist North American critics have used the moniker "zombie formalism" to describe recent abstract painting. This begs the question: Does that venerable modernist mode still have critical...
Prints + Editions
PETER BLUM EDITION 20 West 57th Street, New York, NY 10019 Tel: 212 244 6055 Fax: 212 244 6054 E-mail: art@peterblumgallery.com Web: www.peterblumgallery.com Tues.-Fri. 10-6, Sat. 11-6 Book, John Zurler, Paintings 1981-2014, essay...
Robert Barry: Bethlehem Baptist Church
Robert Barry BETHLEHEM BAPTIST CHURCH Passing through Rudolph Schindler's Bethlehem Baptist Church, one witnessed fifty-one glimmering words, which whispered from the walls of this nearly forgotten architectural monument. One of only a few modernist...
Roberto Matta: Pace
Roberto Matta PACE "Matta in the 1950s and 1960s" was a curious assortment of Roberto Matta's works, not all commensurate with each other: eleven drawings, all wax crayon and graphite; six oil paintings; and a figurative bronze sculpture. The...
Rodrigo Valenzuela: Envoy Enterprises
Rodrigo Valenzuela ENVOY ENTERPRISES The photographic works in Rodrigo Valenzuela's "Hedonic Reversal" (all works 2014) depict ruins, or representations of ruins, which have been constructed from stark white elements--lath, chalk, a crumbling...
Rose Wylie: Veneklasen/Werner
BERLIN Rose Wylie VENEKLASEN/WERNER Rose Wylie's exhibition "Dressed to Kill" opened a fortnight after Halloween and featured among its ten characteristically outsize, often multipanel paintings several whose iconography revolved around seasonal...
Sadamasa Motonaga: Fergus McCaffrey
Sadamasa Motonaga FERGUS MCCAFFREY One of the coolest pieces of ephemera in the catalogue accompanying this exhibition of Sadamasa Motonaga's later work is the artist's "My Abstract Manga Manifesto," a sequence of four line drawings published...
Sophie Calle: Fraenkel Gallery
SAN FRANCISCO Sophie Calle FRAENKEL GALLERY In 1988, the French artist Sophie Calle, whose work has long plumbed the vicissitudes of power, purportedly received a promising overture. "An American bank invited me to do a project," she states....
Susan Hiller: Lisson Gallery
Susan Hiller LISSON GALLERY In 2011, Susan Hiller staged a major retrospective at Tate Britain in London. At the time, Hiller--whose background is in anthropology--expressed relief that her art had received enough attention to keep her going,...
System of Belief: Michael Ned Holte on Public Fiction
THIS STORY BEGINS somewhere other than the beginning. It's a hot summer night in Los Angeles, and the artist D'Ette Nogle is onstage accompanied by two big, restless dogs. Nogle is recounting the plot of Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, a hardly...
Takashi Murakami: Mori Art Museum, Tokyo
Takashi Murakami MORI ART MUSEUM, TOKYO IT'S NO SECRET THAT, from the beginning, Takashi Murakami harbored ambitions to become a superstar in the global art scene. And, of course, he achieved this goal in short order: In 2005, Murakami completed...
Taus Makhacheva
FLANKED BY the Caucasus Mountains on the highest plateau in Dagestan, the village of Tsovkra-1 has parlayed the perils of its topography into a peculiar claim to fame: that every able-bodied member of its roughly four-hundred-person population can...
"The Shadow of the Avant-Garde: Rousseau and the Forgotten Masters": Museum Folkwang, Essen, Germany
"The Shadow of the Avant-Garde: Rousseau and the Forgotten Masters" MUSEUM FOLKWANG, ESSEN, GERMANY FINDING A TITLE to anchor a thematic group show is notoriously fraught, as "The Shadow of the Avant-Garde: Rousseau and the Forgotten Masters"...
They Live: J. Hoberman on "Walkers" at the Museum of the Moving Image
"ICONS OF HOLLYWOOD have richly circulating afterlives which belie the alleged obsolescence of the medium," writes curator Robert M. Rubin in his introduction to the catalogue for the Museum of the Moving Image's dense and eccentric show "Walkers:...
Thinking through Cinema: Stuart Liebman on the Films of Jean Epstein
1921 WAS AN ANNUS MIRABILIS for Jean Epstein (1897-1953). Born in Warsaw and raised in Switzerland, the twenty-four-year-old former medical student had his first book--an ambitious study of French poetic modernism grandly titled La poesie d'aujourd'hui,...
"Ugo Rondinone: I [Love] John Giorno": Palais De Tokyo
PARIS "Ugo Rondinone: I [love] John Giorno" PALAIS DE TOKYO Living up to its impassioned title, "Ugo Rondinone: I [love] John Giorno" was an adulation of the American counterculture icon as a poet, artist, friend, lover, activist, archivist,...
Ulrike Muller: Museum Moderner Kunst Stiftung Ludwig Wien, Vienna
Ulrike Muller MUSEUM MODERNER KUNST STIFTUNG LUDWIG WIEN, VIENNA ULRIKE MULLER conjures forth an other. This other is an as yet unidentified and genuinely differentiated being, a different sex, a different sensibility--one that not only deviates...
Valerie Jaudon: DC Moore
Valerie Jaudon DC MOORE "Today it is almost impossible," Valerie Jaudon told an interviewer in 2001, "for anyone to understand the intolerant conformity of the early '70s institutional art world, its museums, galleries, and critics. Not only...
Wael Shawky: Sfeir-Semler Gallery
BEIRUT Wael Shawky SFEIR-SEMLER GALLERY One of the most popular and critically acclaimed works in Adriano Pedrosa and Jens Hoffmann's 2011 Istanbul Biennial was Cabaret Crusades: The Horror Show File, 2010, Wael Shawky's video inspired by...
Waves of Migration: Nora M. Alter on John Akomfrah's Recent Work
WATER PERMEATES the recent film installations of John Akomfrah. Productions such as Vertigo Sea, 2015, Tropikos, and Auto da Fe, both 2016, are replete with shots of rippling waves, crashing surf, winding rivers, and babbling creeks, intermixed with...
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