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Philip Guston: Laughter in the Dark

Philip Guston’s 180 Richard Nixon drawings—there are also three paintings in the show—are nasty, scabrous, witty, grossly unfair and one of the juster verdicts handed down on our thirty-seventh president, the only one to resign from office. They are relentless, in part because Guston drew them without let up in two short bouts, possessed, in a fury of anger and joy at what he saw come from his pen. They gouge and hit below the belt yet the closer you look the more subtleties emerge.

Max Beckmann in New York

This current exhibition of his works not only represents the paintings actually made in New York, but its curator, Sabine Rewald, has used the city as a kind of compass with which to orient the viewer within the scope of the artist’s life and vision—one that changed throughout his life challenges and geographic dislocations.

William Eggleston The Democratic Forest

Through the lens of Eggleston’s sensuous, radical color, the things that seemed so distant at the time—most poignantly, the fragility of the American Dream—were very close indeed.

Beverly Buchanan Ruins and Rituals

Beverly Buchanan isn’t exactly an art world unknown. In 1981, the Cuban-American artist Ana Mendieta included three of Buchanan’s cast concrete sculptures in Dialectics of Isolation: An Exhibition of Third World Women Artists of the United States at the all-female cooperative A.I.R. Gallery.

Gimme Shelter

The problem begins with the wall-sized photograph of bright orange life vests just outside the entrance. The life vests make an attractive, rather benign, visual representation of the crisis.

The Democracy of Touches: A New Reading of Richard Pousette-Dart

What I have essentially discovered in my recent observations of Pousette-Dart’s work is that they appear to have been made for future generations of artists.

Carrie Mae Weems

Since the late 1970s, Carrie Mae Weems has pursued a socially engaged form of creative practice, examining how identity is constructed through concepts of race, gender, and class, while interrogating the processes by which we produce a sense of self in relation to both private memory and public history.

Pipilotti Rist Pixel Forest

In the midst of the political tide of darkness that has submerged the country, the Swiss artist Pipilotti Rist’s Pixel Forest retrospective at the New Museum is a much-needed gasp for oxygen.

Æthelred Eldridge

There is little to guide one through the twistings and turnings of the fervid imaginings and aphorisms of Æthelred Eldridge in this beautifully curated exhibition at Essex Flowers, but the enigmatic approach is in keeping with the artist’s own practice of ambiguous and oracular image-making and writing.

Doris Salcedo The Materiality of Mourning

A rose is a rose is a rose. Or, as Martin Heidegger put it, “what is pre-given to the poet … can be re-given in the poem.”

Kerry James Marshall Mastry

This first ever retrospective of Kerry James Marshall (b. 1955) at the Met Breuer proves he has pulled off a stunning two-fold accomplishment.

Zao Wou-Ki No Limits

When painters migrate between previously distant visual cultures, novel artistic syntheses may seem possible. No country has a longer or more illustrious tradition of visual accomplishment than China. But until the 20th century, art in China mostly developed without directly responding to European painting. Zao Wou-Ki was one of the first Chinese painters to attempt a synthesis of these very different traditions.

Ragnar Kjartansson Scenes from Western Culture/Architecture and Morality/World Light

The Icelandic artist Ragnar Kjartansson’s fourth solo show at Luhring Augustine is a tripartite serving of oils, videos, and a four-screen film. Concurrent with his survey retrospective at the Hirschhorn Museum, the exhibitions show Kjartansson seeking to redefine the terms of a durational aesthetic engagement through his deeply mindful, perhaps too historically conscious, art, while displaying the multivalent nature of his somewhat uncharacterizable approach.

Carolee Schneemann

In this time of war and uncertainty, Carolee Schneemann, the best artist embodiment of Aphrodite we have, has brought us two exhibitions that take us, with her uncompromising authenticity, into places rarely visited.

Alex Da Corte A Man Full of Trouble

Arguably, Alex Da Corte has been one of the most prolific artists of his generation in the last two or so years. Between Die Hexe, his magnificent early 2015 occupation of the Upper East Side townhouse housing the blue-chip gallery Luxembourg & Dayan and his current return to New York with a solo exhibition at Maccarone this month, Da Corte has been productive.

Tetsumi Kudo

The Japanese artist Tetsumi Kudo’s work emerged at the height of Cold War paranoia. From nuclear annihilation and techno-capitalist commodification to environmental collapse, manifest anxiety bursts from the artist’s diminutive birdcage sculptures, now on view at Andrea Rosen Gallery.

Dreamlands: Immersive Cinema and Art 1905-2016

Comprising the work of over forty artists and filmmakers, curator Chrissie Iles’s massive undertaking speaks comprehensively to the expanded field of cultural production, where the cinematic moves beyond its disciplinary boundaries and unites art with lived experience.

Decolonize This Place

Walking into the meeting hall at Artists Space Books & Talks is like stepping into community-based organizing center with the energy and excitement of a rock concert. One is not only greeted by a crowd of young artists and activist, but immediately inundated with a spate of hand-painted banners—battle flags for social justice and equality, as it were.

Julia Rommel Man Alive

“I don’t believe in history, that’s his story. / I believe in mystery, that’s my story.” Sun Ra once declared. / My Stories, Your Semi-Autobiographical First Novel, that’s her story. / This mystery is told by a folded history that unfolds the story

Leah Raintree: Another Land: After Noguchi

Considering those shimmering fields of human handprints that cover the walls of prehistoric caves, the human impulse to make a mark on the world is not a recent mutation

Black Pulp!

Black Pulp! presents a historical survey of how African American writers, journalists, poets, activists, artists, and organizations utilized printed media to offer “counternarratives to Jim Crow era stereotypes.

Francis Picabia: Our Heads Are Round so Our Thoughts Can Change Direction

Francis Picabia (1879 – 1953), whose mother was French and whose father was a Cuban-born Spaniard, also described himself as being both Italian and American, and his art is no less polyvalent. MoMA’s monstrous, thought-provoking, and at times thrilling survey—with its formidable catalogue—demands focus, commitment, and an open mind; and provides everything you need to assess this unsung hero of an undefined modernism. Best known as an associate of Alfred Stieglitz’s 291 Gallery and a progenitor of New York proto-Dada around World War I, Picabia is newly revealed in this retrospective of 241 works, exploring the artist’s entire career through oils, drawings, printed publications, film, associations with music, theater, and dance, enamel paintings, photo-based work, spoken word compositions, and correspondence.

No Man's Land: Women Artists from the Rubell Family Collection

How sweet it is, then, that this 1908 Renaissance revival landmark is now  “no man’s land”—home to an art museum dedicated to women in the arts!  This is the irony, though not the inspiration, for the current exhibition NO MAN’S LAND: Women Artists from the Rubell Family Collection.

Siah Armajani

Born in 1939, Siah Armajani has become one of America’s most venerable sculptors. Originally from Iran, the artist came to Minnesota in 1960 to study at Macalester College, where he has since stayed and, over the last fifty years, produced a remarkable body of work closely tied to the American democratic tradition and poetry.

Reflections on The Sea is Mine: 2016 Qalandiya International in Palestine

Among the many ironies of the ongoing Palestinian crisis, a salient one for visitors to this year’s Qalandiya International (Qi2016) was that no individual could have visited all of its sites. The third iteration of this promising young biennial stretched from the West Bank to the United Kingdom, with exhibitions in Ramallah, Jerusalem, Bethlehem, Gaza, Haifa, Amman, Beirut, and London. Besides showcasing broad international solidarity for the Palestinian cause, Qalandiya International’s multi-site itinerary demonstrated the obdurate reality that some borders are impassible. No matter the nationality of one’s papers, at least one of Qalandiya International’s locations likely represents deep political contention.


Eight years to the day from Lehman’s failure, artist and educator Michael Mandiberg debuted his current exhibition, FDIC Insured, which captures the extent of this financial unraveling in a clear-eyed site-specific installation tucked away in a vacant office on the 15th Floor of 40 Rector Street.


The Brooklyn Rail

DEC 16-JAN 17

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