ArtSeen

Kazimir Malevich: Suprematism

I must create a system or be enslav’d by another man’s. —William Blake Kazimir Malevich’s achievement remains enigmatic even ninety years after he drew four lines on a two and a half foot square canvas and filled in the resulting area with black paint. That work, along with thirty-seven other paintings and many additional drawings now hangs at the Guggenheim Museum.

The American Effect

There is no question that American policies and globalization have oppressed citizens in Second and Third World countries. The riots waged against the WTO convention in Seattle in 1999 protested the use of corporate sweatshops, where low-wage laborers have literally worked their lives away while creating commodities for Western capitalist markets.

Outpost

As the title implies, the artists in Outpost are looking for new territory in contemporary art. Largely made up of videos, performances, and installations, the unexpected use of technology is another dominant theme in this exploratory show at Smack Mellon, an artist’s outpost in DUMBO. While the exhibit succeeds in tapping a vein of new works, the obvious premise is less interesting than the dialogue among the works.

Kehinde Wiley: Faux Real

By now it’s well-documented that many of the recent generation of visual artists who have attained prominence quickly have been able to do so because of the advantages of holding an MFA. Not only does it adorn a résumé with an aura of prestige, it also provides a ready backlog of art historical references and critical methods.

James Siena Gorney, Bravin + Lee

James Siena’s third solo exhibition at Gorney Bravin + Lee features 78 works on paper that emanate with life and expressive individuality. Among these innovative abstractions in graphite, ink, and colored pencil are thirty notational drawings assembled in the gallery’s small back room.

Thomas Ruff — New Work

Thomas Ruff’s recent show of large color abstractions and fussily appropriate vintage negatives was a strange climax to the artist’s concurrent European retrospective and the publication of Nudes, his digitally blurred images of Internet pornography paired with text by the French enfant terrible novelist of the moment, Michel Houellebecq.

Geoffrey Davis

I did not see the Matthew Barney show, even though I was in the neighborhood several times, and could’ve dodged the entrance fee. I did not see the Matthew Barney show. Of course I’ve seen bits and pieces here and there in Manhattan. I bare him no grudge, and wish him only the best.

No, Trespassing

Fifty-four years ago, George Orwell wrote his groundbreaking novel 1984. The book’s frightening conception, of an omnipresent, all-powerful government that is able to control people’s actions and even thoughts, has since been summarized by the well-known phrase "Big Brother is Watching You."

Focus Group

Curated by Eric Heist for Minneapolis’s The Soap Factory, Focus Group previewed for three weeks at Momenta Art and rewarded viewers with a timely and compelling case for the defense of the individual in corporate America.

Gandalf Gavan and Susanna Heller

Gandalf Gavan and Susanna Heller face off with floor to ceiling drawings at Sideshow Gallery. The exhibition is called Out of Line after the rigorous line both artists use to pull their drawings together. The works, well installed by Richard Timperio, create an exciting atmosphere in the gallery. Gavan adds a couple of sculptures to the mix and Heller contributes over twenty-five small paintings of New York.

Future Species

In the corner of the D.U.M.B.O. Arts Center on a small pedestal sits a video monitor. Across its screen flash alarming images, the product of artist Istav Kantor’s pessimistic vision of future human sexuality entitled "The Trinity Session Video." Figures scantily clothed in wires, keyboards, and aluminum gyrate to the rhythm of discordant mechanical sounds.

An Exhibition of Five Contemporary Thai Artists

The Planet Thailand restaurant has not only played host to many a dining guest in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, it also happens to actively support artists of all backgrounds. No, not by shoveling pad thai into their mouths, but by offering their art work a place to breathe within the restaurant’s cavernous space. Fittingly enough, the most recent exhibition was a show of contemporary art by both Thai and Thai-American artists.

From Print Edition Web Exclusive: Letter from London

Wandering through Belgrade in late June, I had little hope of actually finding the two contemporary photography shows I had spied listings for. While the city has a discernible order, my flimsy tourist map with Latin spelling held little resemblance to the ubiquitous Cyrillic street signs around me.

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AUG-SEPT 2003

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