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Tim Rollins and K.O.S.: Workshop

Tim Rollins and K.O.S. was also about the power of love to transform communities. Workshop brings that legacy to life and anticipates the road ahead for Studio K.O.S.

Lawrence Lek: AIDOL 爱道

Manifesting his architectural training as well as an interest in the visual aesthetic of role-playing video games, Lek’s computerized fantasies elicit the spirit of free-roaming gameplay with the comprehensiveness of a technical illustration.

Chando Ao, Sam Ghantous, David OReilly, and Bjorn Sparrman

Though it bears no formal title, the exhibition provides an encompassing text that reads, in a caption, “We create art with tech, promiscuous tech-spawning art. Technology that is accessible, learnable, observable, trackable, appreciable, and critiquable with which we fight and play.” It is this spirit in which other Easter eggs are embedded in the show.

Moira Dryer: Paintings & Works on Paper

Moira Dryer’s third exhibition with this gallery—two previous exhibitions organized by gallery partner Augusto Arbizo took place in 2014 and 2016—comprises twelve paintings and nine works on paper.

Louis Fratino: Come Softly to Me

Louis Fratino lavishes art-historical quotations on doe-eyed, love-besotted young men in his jewel-like oil paintings with the same easy generosity as spring magnolias currently give off their perfume.

John Sonsini

There have always been multiple entry points for viewers to come to terms with John Sonsini’s bravura portraits of single or multiple male subjects, most of whom are Mexican day laborers, and “the age of Trump” has unexpectedly provided us with yet another.

Walid Raad

Nearly three decades after the declared end of the Lebanese Civil War in 1991, Walid Raad continues to complicate the historical narrative of his native Lebanon and the Middle East as a whole

Sharon Horvath: Gaze at Your Own Risk

Horvath does not provide answers to this ghoulish line of comedic horror. With hyper-hallucinatory night trips to other galaxies, she leaves us wondering, guided by dreamy intuition and menacing charm.

Leeroy New: Aliens of Manila

The sprawling installation is the culmination of the artist’s sojourn amidst grassroots Latin communities and the skyrocketing gentrification of the Lower East Side. Dense with an unabashed color palette of low-cost plastic, items such as baskets or fly swatters are molded into various renderings of abstraction.

Paul Anthony Smith: Junction

Paul Anthony Smith’s first solo exhibition in New York, at Jack Shainman Gallery, arrives with the proverbial wind at the artist's back. Smith, who turns 31 this year, has already enjoyed multiple museum group shows and acquisitions around the country, and some mid career artists whose names would be familiar to most readers have been discreetly collecting his work for some time.

Suzanne Anker & Frank Gillette: Strata

“It is worse, much worse, than you think.” So begins David Wallace-Wells’s new book on climate change, tellingly titled The Uninhabitable Earth: Life After Warming. So thoroughly have we now altered the planet, the author tells us, that even if we were to dramatically change our lives right now the future that awaits us is more devastating than we’ve imagined.

The Drowned World

I first came across the name Dash Snow when I was trying to understand why the heir to the Schlumberger oil fortune, had provided a private jet for Texas Democratic Congressman Mickey Leland to meet with Fidel Castro in 1979

Haegue Yang: Tracing Movement

One difference between a diagram and a tracing is their relationship to abstraction. To diagram is to anticipate the production of something new, and a diagram’s information can be read selectively. To trace is to attempt to capture the totality of a formation as something absent.

Adolph Gottlieb: Classic Paintings

In a pamphlet accompanying Adolph Gottlieb’s 1954 retrospective, Clement Greenberg wrote, “Picasso, of all people, was struck by Gottlieb’s pictures when he saw them in reproduction, said so, and incorporated them in his big Kitchen painting.”


As a supplement to the feminist adage “the personal is political,” the group exhibition Overture asserts the formal is necessarily political, too.


“I think about holding space for vanishing,” ANOHNI recounts in the press release for this exhibition, “of people, of communities, of biodiversity, in a way that opens into spectral time, leaking all points at once.”

Nathalie Djurberg & Hans Berg: Delights of an Undirected Mind

The forest and the house are two psychologically-charged domains in the Western imaginary, both ruled by the play of light and shadow. When we can’t see the far edge of the trees, a forest becomes an unfathomable mystery, and its secrets take on a more threatening character with the fall of night.

Tattfoo Tan: Heal the Man in Order to Heal the Land

Heal the Man in Order to Heal the Land breaks from Tattfoo Tan’s past focus on environmental consciousness. Here mental health and self-awareness supersede environment, indicating a new avenue in his exploration of ecological activism.

Monumental Journey: The Daguerreotypes of Girault de Prangey

This exhibition at the Met gathers over 100 of his daguerreotypes, less than a tenth of his total production, focusing on his extensive travels east through the Mediterranean from 1842 to 1845. Though it only occupies a few small galleries of the museum’s photography wing, the collection is filled with small pictures of a vast geographic scope.

Jessi Reaves: II

The show announcement for Jessi Reaves’s II features a screen grab from a chase scene in Jack Reacher, a 2012 blockbuster action film starring Tom Cruise, in which a vintage, Chamberlain-ed Chevelle tries to run an unbudging, silvery Audi off the road.

In Celebration

Marcuse “Cusie” Pfeifer is a one-of-a-kind phenomenon in a world of multiple editions. When she opened her gallery on Madison Avenue in 1976, she exclusively exhibited photography, aggressively promoted women photographers, and agitated the art world with the first photography exhibition devoted to The Male Nude (1978).

The Symbolist Vision

I was mesmerized by two totally new-to-me pieces: one by Schlüter, of the Austrian school, with a whopping skull, a candle, a watch, two books (whose titles are, of course, indecipherable), and a few other tools/signs weighted with symbolic mood.

Radicalism in the Wilderness: Japanese Artists in the Global 1960s

Radicalism thinks through this dialectic within Japan itself and on an international scale. The show features boundary-pushing artists who worked in areas remote from Tokyo—the seat of the art establishment after World War II—while proposing the terms “connection” and “resonance” to describe, respectively, concrete links and conceptual parallels with figures in Europe and the United States.

Barthélemy Toguo: Urban Requiem

It started with a passport. For artist Barthélemy Toguo, movement through the world was tethered to the small book he was required to carry when he traveled, within which his progress could be tracked at every border he tried to cross.

Gretchen Bender: So Much Deathless

Her groundbreaking works of 30 years ago seem to dovetail just as effortlessly with a contemporary interest in activism and ways that artists can deploy new developments in technology and communication without becoming subsumed by a consumerist ethos.

Joan Miró: Birth of the World

The Birth of the World hangs centrally in the first of the two galleries that comprise the show, positioned as the painting where Miró broke with the style of his earlier work.

Eric N. Mack: Lemme walk across the room

This current exhibition is full of paintings that can be entered, walked around, under. Mack, who staunchly identifies as a painter, has produced an installation for the Brooklyn Museum’s Great Hall that is void of the medium’s historical materials: oils, acrylics, canvas, and supports.

Leonard Cohen: A Crack in Everything

Well into his twilight years, Leonard Cohen continued to wander when most others might have long since settled. Of his songwriting process, he said that “Every song begins with that old urgency to rescue oneself, to save oneself.” Cohen didn’t feel isolated in these discordant stirrings; rather, for him, this was the nature of our human condition.

Odette England: The Outskirts, Exposed, and Punched

Odette England puts photographic peripheries at the center of her work, whether the edges of images or the residual marks left behind by photographic process.


Michelle Handelman’s body of work Hustlers and Empires, of which a new installment currently appears at Signs & Symbols Gallery in the Lower East Side, is a symbolically-layered, operatic examination of “the hustler.” Here the label encompasses those who transgress society’s norms as a way to survive, and those who must survive in spite of their transgressions, including the sex worker, the pimp, the drug dealer, the addict, the queer outsider. The newest film, LOVER HATER CUNTY INTELLECTUAL, focuses on a character who is in fact a “layering of persons,” portrayed by the queer feminist artist/activist Viva Ruiz, whose performance is partly autobiographical and partly inspired by the libertine 20th-century novelist Marguerite Duras.

N. Dash

All of the pieces in N. Dash’s eponymous show at the Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum are untitled. By itself, this is unremarkable except if one keeps in mind that the act of naming is the first step in domesticating an object, a person, a homeland, or an idea.

Sheer Presence: Monumental Paintings by Robert Motherwell

In Sheer Presence, an extant selection of eight large-scale paintings (some borrowed from The Dedalus Foundation, established by the artist in 1981) Motherwell’s impassioned quest for beauty is revealed.

New York-Centric

Three canvases hang as looming, watchful presences in New York-Centric, an exhibition at the Art Students League of New York curated by James Little: Al Loving’s stolid New Hexagon (1996), Dan Christensen’s Jarrito, (1997) and Ed Clark’s sensual and lugubrious X-form Untitled (Bastille Series) (1991).

Warhol Women

Not since an exhibition of Warhol’s screenprints some years ago have I elected to write about the work of this monumental art world figure. Despite the controversy at that time, focusing on the history of Jews in the twentieth century, these prints seemed to hold resonances, both aesthetic and political, yet dissimilar to those embedded in Warhol Women.

Zoe Avery Nelson: The Measure of a Boi

Running throughout this exhibition of nine canvases, the overwhelming vehicle of anatomical ambiguity, is the direction and intensity of the brushstroke, the modulation of tint and hue, and the inscription of a few well-placed lines—in other words—the handling of the paint (as opposed to narrative elements). The painter, Zoe Avery Nelson, presents a glossary of equivocal forms and plays on the visual interchangeability of joints, folds, seams, and protuberances of the human body.


The Brooklyn Rail

MAY 2019

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