ArtSeen

Space Between

Peter Schjeldahl, speaking with Jarrett Earnest in the July/August issue of the Rail, pointed out that sculpture can be “irritating” because, unlike some of its peers, it competes for space with the viewer. We wonder “what it is, why it’s there, and when it will go away.

Berliner Sommerzeit

Ferdinand Lassalle, the great early international-socialist light of 19th century Prussia, loved its capital Berlin so much that he snuck back into the city disguised as a wagon-driver after he was banished for social organizing during the 1848 – 49 uprisings in the still un-unified Germany.

Letter from Paris

A poster in the Paris Métro this summer features a recreation of Delacroix’s famous Liberty Leading the People, only in place of Delacroix’s statuesque woman, the World Wildlife Fund’s giant panda carries the French flag.

SARAH CHARLESWORTH Doubleworld

They descend from the sky, soaring—captured mid air—in oversize grisaille panels, caught in the brief moments before hitting ground. The clipped, cropped, and expanded newspaper cutouts of suicide and accident victims that comprise Sarah Charlesworth’s fourteen life-size “Stills” series (1980, printed in 2012) transcend time and penetrate a space beyond. Gravity pauses here.

Picture This: New Orleans
Mary Ellen Mark’s Last Assignment

There was no way to tell Mary Ellen Mark only had four weeks left to live when she embarked on her last assignment, photographing the recovery efforts in New Orleans for the tenth anniversary of Katrina. It was spring and she’d been sent by CNN, who assigned a videography team to work behind her.

A Painted Horse by JOE SOLA
(with MATTHEW CHAMBERS, SAYRE GOMEZ, RUDY K. SLOBECK, and others)

Luminous autumn tones unfold across a surface divided by jagged diagonal bands. Streaks of fuchsia dissolve into lilac edged in silvery white beside umber patches gradually glowing orange, then chestnut.

RODRÍGUEZ CALERO
Urban Martyrs and Latter Day Santos

Rodríguez Calero—who was born in Puerto Rico but has lived most of her life in New York and New Jersey—is an artist whose methods and processes are so intricate that she has had to invent unique terms of classification to describe them.

RUTH ROOT

Each of the seven paintings in Ruth Root’s most recent show consists of two conjoined parts: 1) a larger angular geometric piece of Plexiglas covered with patterns executed in spray paint and enamel; and 2) a smaller, albeit still sizeable, fabric component also covered with patterns, this time printed digitally onto the fabric.

SEAN SCULLY Different Places

Driving along narrow country roads eighteen kilometers north of Aix-en-Provence one comes to Château la Coste, an art center designed by Tadao Ando in 2011.

CLIFFORD ROSS Landscape Seen & Imagined

Longinus’s eloquence on the elevation of style: / The artist transcends through previous lives of rugged yet robust / Bestowing hands and eyes.

MERYL MCMASTER Second Self

I was lucky enough to see Meryl McMaster’s photographic series In-Between Worlds at Toronto’s CONTACT Photography Festival in 2013. McMaster, a young breakout artist of Plains Cree, British, and Dutch heritage, and a member of the Siksika Nation, has most often taken questions of historical and tribal identity as her subject, particularly in relation to her own mixed heritage.

Type as Image

Type as Image, organized by a young, New York-based curator named Jill Coklan, did an excellent job of presenting three artists who work with typefaces as part of their imagery.

Personal Correspondents: Photography and Letter Writing in Civil War Brooklyn

A boy with a youthful round face, maybe eight or ten years old, stands tall with his arms relaxed at his sides. He wears a dark suit, well-worn boots, and a wrinkled white apron. His clothes swallow his body as if designed for someone taller.

STANLEY WHITNEY and LORRAINE O’GRADY

Two shows on view at the Studio Museum of Harlem dramatize the resistance of art to fixity and stability, through the abstract paintings in Stanley Whitney: Dance the Orange and what might today be termed the “socially-engaged” photographs in Lorraine O’Grady: Art Is….

AGNES DENES Living Pyramid

The monumental Living Pyramid rises from the lawn of Socrates Sculpture Park in Long Island City like a futuristic mirage, with a base thirty feet on a side. It marks a return to New York public art for this eighty-three-year-old artist.

ANDREAS SCHULZE Stau

Some of these Andreas Schulze paintings were shown in New York in late 2014, at Team Gallery in an exhibition called Traffic Jam. Now, several months later, here in Berlin, those paintings and some others are stuck again in a “stau” (translation, simply: jam).

EVAN NESBIT Porosity

For his first solo exhibition in New York, Evan Nesbit is showing at both spaces of Eleven Rivington. Comprising painting and sculpture, the exhibition is titled Porosity, which describes an aspect of Nesbit’s painting process, as well as, it could be said, the imaginative speculation undertaken to surmise what may structure the sculptures beneath their painted surface.

BARBARA TAKENAGA Nebraska

Barbara Takenaga’s site-specific installation at MASS MoCA capitalizes on the artist’s signature patterned dot motifs while pushing the medium restriction of the canvas into new and unprecedented realms.

WOLFGANG TILLMANS Book for Architects

When German photographer Wolfgang Tillmans won the Turner Prize in 2000—the first photographer and the first non-British citizen to do so—he had already made a name for himself as a sympathetic chronicler of youth and gay cultures and of the ephemera of the everyday.

Means of Approach: New York Painting

Walking up the museum’s central circular stairway one can approach New York Painting, an exhibition that has been on view all summer in Bonn, through any of three possible entrances.

SHIRIN NESHAT Facing History

“Thus we begin to catch a glimpse of the paradox of freedom; there is freedom only in a situation and there is a situation only through freedom,” said Sartre, and such is the angst that informs the work of Iran’s most celebrated artist, Shirin Neshat.

MICHAEL SMITH Excuse Me!?!…I’m looking for the “Fountain of Youth”

Throughout his lengthy performance art career, Michael Smith (b. 1951, Chicago) has been known for his creation of his own world full of existential happenings in curious forms. He has continued to perform and examine the absurdities of existence, particularly the concept of being an outcast in a chaotic, overpopulated society.

CHOONG SUP LIM Void

Choong Sup Lim is a mature Korean artist who has spent many years working in New York City, where he has lived since 1973. Lim has a studio in Tribeca, where he puts together his quietly original sculptures and makes paintings that acknowledge Western abstraction, even as he places an emphasis on traditional Asian imagery and painting techniques.

Empty House Casa Vazia

Despite its name, Empty House Casa Vazia is anything but vacant: it blooms like a veritable Garden of Neoconcrete Delights, affording the eye plentiful stimuli ranging from sleek to arch. The eighteen Brazilian artists who have hewn these peculiar treasures span generations, yet their works share certain mannerisms and makeup, as well as a common conceptual tongue.

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SEPT 2015

All Issues