Magazine article Artforum International

Mark Van Yetter and Matt Hoyt: Dispatch

Magazine article Artforum International

Mark Van Yetter and Matt Hoyt: Dispatch

Article excerpt

Dispatch, a small Chinatown gallery established in 2007 by regular collaborators Howie Chen and Gabrielle Giattino, presents itself with formidable seriousness: "Dispatch offers a model for curatorial production: an office for receiving and originating exhibitions, projects, and concepts treated as time-sensitive transmissions. The activities of Dispatch reflect the independent ability to mobilize with tactical urgency, editorial decisiveness, and critical rigor." That Dispatch's most recent "time-sensitive transmission" was one of the quietest little exhibitions imaginable, intriguing and alienating in pretty much equal measure, makes the self-conscious institutional rhetoric--tongue-in-cheek or not--seem all the more unnecessary. Artists Mark Van Yetter and Matt Hoyt seem to appreciate that showing a few modest works, made by well-established means, is a complex enough undertaking on its own.

Yetter and Hoyt are both graduates of the School of Visual Arts, and also share an aesthetic modesty that Dispatch's press release is at pains to contextualize as consciously oppositional to contemporaneous high-production-value art. The impression the show gives is, however, less one of critical responsiveness than of something close to timelessness, a retreat into semiprivate obsession rather than an overt refusal of a prevailing trend. In any case, we have recently seen the emergence of an opposing tendency: See the New Museum of Contemporary Art's recent "Unmonumental" and the current Whitney Biennial's concentration on "lessness" for starters.) On the evidence of this outing, teasingly dubbed "Escalator to Common Art," Yetter's practice is a rather scattershot affair, while Hoyt's revolves around an almost Zen-like introspective focus. What seems to bind the two artists together is an attraction to the anachronistic and opaque, an interest in making objects and images that pull away from the here and now.

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In this exhibition, the Pennsylvania-and Istanbul-based Yetter showed three paintings and three mixed-media works in which various influences, from data to German Expressionism, are discernable but discomfiting restlessness. …

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