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Mall and Mosque: Authority Appraised and Approved

The first element of Sophia Al-Maria’s installation at the Whitney exceeds the gallery itself: thudding bass not unlike the dramatic undertone of a horror movie bleeds through the walls.


It’s taken a long time for Bruce Conner (1933 – 2008), the polymath San Francisco artist who was a major force in the development of both found-object sculpture and experimental film in the United States, to be given a major retrospective.

TARYN SIMON An Occupation of Loss

Renowned for her conceptually-driven photographic projects, the artist Taryn Simon recently teamed up with the architectural firm OMA for her first foray into the realm of performance and installation art as the creative director behind An Occupation of Loss, an event at the Park Avenue Armory in which professional mourners from all over the world were assembled to enact funerary rituals within a bleak, minimalist environment consisting of eleven concrete towers.

MATTHEW BARNEY Facility of Decline

In a photograph from 1899, a twenty-five-year-old Houdini looks toward the camera with a calm but teasing smile. He is naked save for a loincloth, and his body is trussed with chains weighted by padlocks.


Like any election year, 2016 is a year of slogans. Make America great again. With the recent vote on Brexit in the United Kingdom, slogans there, too, where politicians like Boris Johnson and Nigel Farage peddled: Take back control.


Three contrasting types of work comprise Lynda Benglis’ current exhibition at Cheim & Read. Standing alone in the gallery’s first room is a towering cast aluminum piece: The Fall Caught (2016), a vaguely anthropomorphic form leaning against a wall, large enough to stand beneath.


The argument in which craft is diminished as art is by now cliché. The shift in art-making of the last two generations has been toward a complete expansion of what art can be, and craft is included in this widening of art’s definition.

Take Me (I’m Yours)

Take Me (I’m Yours) presents the work of over forty artists, all of whom challenge the time-honored relationship of distance and deference established between art-object and viewer.


In her most recent show, the Brooklyn-based artist Kyle Staver presents paintings that provide the viewer with an escape—to a world that is familiar enough to be recognizable, but more magical than our own.


Bradley Walker Tomlin: A Retrospective pays long overdue homage to an artist whose contributions to Abstract Expressionism have been relatively overlooked.

Occupy Peace

Vested Spirit anchors, / Scudder Flip floats. / Skins, fragile yet resilient, caress, / Stretch, wrap, suspend


Swayed by summer breeze, tinted with transparent ocher, punctured / Asymmetrically with alluring violence, / Symmetrically piercing the other side at will, / Swirling slowly to another unknown space below.


The Brooklyn Rail

OCT 2016

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