Wednesday, January 19, 2022

Bas Jan Ader at Meliksetian | Briggs, Los Angeles


Funny or sad? or a sort of funny sad, conflicted feelings, "a literary genre that blends aspects of both tragic and comic forms" - like surely he's not actually going to get into that boat.. oh. huh. Wait, what? No.

Tuesday, January 18, 2022

Hannah Levy at Arts Club of Chicago


Surreal lush: plethorize association, fertilize until green abundance overflows, and we can't contain our reference. "It's risky, committing language to such ambiguousness, you sound like a perv while the tight-lipped get doubt's benefit. The words [will] assign more meaning to us than the sculptures which reflect them." The planet manifests unconscious what the spacemen would prefer closeted, our dead relations reappear. "We don't need other worlds. We need a mirror." - seems Lem's critique for conjured aliens. And between the poles of sentient-planet-surface-island-fantasy and mirror not sure where these lay. Somewhere like Matthew Barney chromed Louise Bourgeois. 

See too: Ron Nagle at Modern ArtNairy Baghramian at Museo Tamayo

Michaela Eichwald atKunsthalle Basel


What is a couch but an innuendo for a body? Suggesting its shape and therefore resembling its function, a loaf. 

Past: Michaela Eichwald

"Because the acne poxed kid's hard desire for satanism outshines his ability to actually conjure it. This is endearing. And there's a joke in here about teenage bedsheets too, but both failed satan and besotted sheets are of that teenage libidinal excess that has a tendency to spill, run over, an excess energies that stain things..."

"poured onto pleather paint flourishes implication: painters are smearing their own oily expelleds." "Like graffiti's intestinal signatures defecating their authorial. ... you're still reminded of your bowel held waste, the brown rope tethering us to earth that Eichwald seems to consistently paint."

"Eichwald threatens actual excess, dribbles that could still stain, or, like graffiti, are already stained, vandalized. Which Eichwald's do feel, vandalized - graffiti's defecated signatures - that pink one scratched into with like a school desk's attempted Baphomet that comes out more as a hairy devil with tits, not really satanic at all."

Monday, January 17, 2022

 Past: Martin Wong & Aaron Gilbert at P.P.O.W

"Which against this dull light, Gilbert's figures grow etiolated, leggy, soft. They bend in strange ways. Squishy vulnerability. For all the bad situations they still manage to find a lot of pleasant lighting, lovely pastel color."

Full: Martin Wong & Aaron Gilbert at P.P.O.W

Saturday, January 15, 2022

ART CLUB2000 atKunsthalle Zürich


A little too early they were. They the waypoint between General Idea and 2015's Surround Audience. 

2015: "10 years ago avenues to visibility were tightly controlled ... Today youth of the post-net are really post image-democratization, a time in which all images come preloaded with mass audiential capabilities, matched by cheap raw visibility's fungible version, exchangeable with any world (fashion, commerce, literature) equally, the gold standard of different disciplines."

But maybe GI was somehow ahead of it all, interested in viral conditions packaged in Trojan horses, not the medium but the dissemination as content.

Wednesday, January 12, 2022

Sam Pulitzer at House of Gaga


"On the internet you would see items auto-designed by algorithms, the internet dredged of images to place it on a mug, Walmart printing an iPhone case with a man in diapers. Everything onto everything. Vertigo in feeling one's toes sense the full ocean of production. A tornado of reference and attachment, and the audience attempting to see in the whirl anything to relieve the anxiety of so much garbage. "

PR: "consciously creates unprecedented combinations of form without guaranteeing that they will resemble anything at all in our ordinary, sinful world or even in the otherworldly realm of pure form."

PR: "this visual detritus would be found laying in wait for redemption as aureoles of broken fate."

"Hoarding as a sort of extended compassion for the derelict neglected of culture, a sympathy moving to material a world simply would like to rid itself of. Composing it into art objects becomes a blessing for sending the objects into the "heavenly" afterlife ... Hooking the hose from the expelling parts of our cultural body to the part that feeds, [hooking ass to head.]"

See too: Darren Bader at Andrew KrepsSer Serpas at LUMA Westbau


"... as images become devalued the importance of artists to revalue the image as puzzling indeterminable founts, labyrinthian puzzles, to stopgap their expediency, becomes paramount."

Sam Pulitzer at Real Fine ArtsPeter Wächtler & Sam Pulitzer at House of Gaga and Reena Spaulings Fine Art

Tuesday, January 11, 2022

Agnes Scherer at Kunstverein für die Rheinlande und Westfalen

Maybe this is a bit on the nose, or maybe this is exactly what we need, a big metaphor linking the symbolists, the icon painters, the current tech surreal of Cornell boxes. 

Autumn Ramsey at Crèvecoeur


This would be the, at least, 4th cat butthole - this one with lips of thighs to attend a sort of mollusk rear. (There's also been at least one, albeit less luxurious, dog butt.) Trying to describe a hole, an absence, but a thing rife with image: the son of god appears in a dog. (Google "dog butt Jesus.") The point being, the rear of a cat is an icon for the mirage factory of Ramsey - the butt is the nexus where the world goes abstract, the fur whorls, the thing, like a Klein bottle, turns in on itself, disappears. Self empties. Self decorates its hole hallucination. Like all the roses. 

Monday, January 10, 2022

Past: Autumn Ramsey

"decorative embellishments adorning the subject like Christmas tree, a structure for the hanging of means, that while Moreau's wreaths of ornamental doodadery shimmer with objects and riches... an object that has more or less lost its meaning to act the tradition itself, history painting glitz."

".. the decorative itself becomes an object. It's not the shimmer to a space, but the sculpted out affect. You're not looking at a lion, you're looking at a hallucination..."

"lovely and sensuous cat butt"

Read full: Autumn Ramsey at CrèvecoeurAutumn Ramsey at Park View, Autumn Ramsey at Night Club

Saturday, January 8, 2022


"Like Cage, for whom silence released a flood of sound, for de Rooij from the magistration of blankness comes an outpouring of reference. Cognition loathes a vacuum and in noise organizes pattern and meaning. Finds pleasure in such sterility totemized.

Friday, January 7, 2022

Claus Richter Easy Clages, Cologne


"a whole fun fair" : the big cartoon, the toy store, thematic to our world which converts everything into transactable pleasure, the stores for adults not much different from a kid's store anymore. "Sesame Street and hyper-Western Americanisation, which Richter has internalised since childhood." In 2015 CAWD wrote: "the kids grown on cartoons have arrived and their childhoods have coincidentally, absurdly, become the accurate depictions of the way the world has begun to feel." And we're once again asked to read the malls for clues to our own humanity. We window shop for it, humanness or something like it.  

See too: “Puddle, pothole, portal” at Sculpture CenterJuliana Huxtable at Reena Spaulings

Wednesday, January 5, 2022

Edu Carrillo at L21 Gallery


the difference between here and Robert Nava or Joe Bradley for the real nappies. Painting as a child, or representations of the paintings of children. One is defensible, wields emoji badges of draftsman. The other is a child. Your preference will be telling. Some will say, neither, yuk yuk. But elsewhere, always, day to day, the same choice.

See too: Austin Lee at Peres Projects (evolution of bad painting) 

Monday, January 3, 2022

Miriam Cahn at The Power Plant


Painting today is made to hang well behind desks. Blame Gerhard Richter "powerful" benign abstraction. Safe. The beautiful paintings Cahn's can't really be mistaken for. Color instead a cruelty. Chicken plucked flesh. An acid replacing lipstick. There is too much content, unmistakeable, with an ambiguous antagonist. Is that birth going well? is the smiley faced sex? The general moments of happiness (sex, handjobs, infants) instead unsafe. This all sounds so direly over-the-top, so excessive. But maybe that's why it works. There's no couching it. No excuse to hang well over you.

Past: Miriam Cahn

"like drawings made by children to be diagnosed by therapists."

"painting's bright red beauty a violent thing. ... balloons filled with red liquid. Rubbed of noses, devoid of hair, flesh the color of factory chicken. The manifold meanings of the adjective tender, "showing gentleness" as well as "sensitive to pain." "(of meat) easy to cut."

"Like heat maps for sensation, it could be unendurable cheese, e.g. "the red stands for love" but its their tenuous walk over the chasm of schmaltz that feels like its relationship to horror - fall into a meat grinder or sentimentality, crushed like Precious Moments figurines. There's something so fragile about our ability to feel empathy, to feel tender. We're stupid creatures that are easy to break. The ability for Cahn to at any moment move firmly into the world of melodrama feels as much a threat as violence, she could destroy them with a heart emoji."

Sunday, January 2, 2022

Darren Bader at Real Pain


Lmao this press release is pretty good, if even only for the last line: "What is compelling here is not a proposal that these assemblages are meaningful, but that there is a chance they could be." The line is telling, much to unpack. The anxiety of things. Of their meaning. A real terror. 

Past: Darren Bader

"that if we're going to take seriously the idea of dead fire bricks arranged gravenly on floors .. then too so we must accept with it its ideological twin, shrimp tossed in a foosball table or muffins arranged. To argue the importance of bricks/floor vs shrimp/game is to already enter into Bader's standoff, and lose to the man brilliantly willing to lose everything to win."

"Possibly the reason a lot of artists hate Bader, besides the general impishness, is the refusal to perform any sort of critical consolidation of his practice, that moral underpinning of art, "criticality." Instead, at the cost of any "critical" structure a near incessant expansion.  Any of Bader's "good ideas" are buried in an avalanche of "any idea." Darren Bader is exhausting. A lot of artists - despite whatever art's claims to freedom and ostensible rejection of cultural values - wouldn't let themselves behave half this stupidly. The criticism is perhaps that acting stupidly isn't really freeing, but really neither is what most artists do anyway. "

"...on the internet you would see mugs printed with inane images auto-designed by algorithms. It dredged everything available to place it onto a mug. Everything onto everything. A tornado of reference and attachment, and the audience in the whirl attempting to see anything to relieve the anxiety of so much garbage, vertigo in feeling one's toes sense the full ocean of production."

See Full:
All posts tagged Darren Bader
Darren Bader at Franco Nero
Darren Bader at Blum & Poe
Darren Bader at Andrew Kreps
Darren Bader at Sadie Coles
Darren Bader at Radio Athènes,
Darren Bader at Kölnischer Kunstverein
Darren Bader at Andrew Kreps

Saturday, January 1, 2022

Xu Zhen at MadeIn Gallery


Xu Zhen is the guy that cut a meter off the top of Mt. Everest, showed the still-snowcapped-peak in a vitrine. Documentation to "prove" it. At the time I was interested in myth and the production of the artist - the way rumor rutted into reality, how artists became "mythic," their trademark. Now it's XU ZHEN®. What artist hasn't established a brand, released a perfume. Like the paintings - structured on the WeChat message screen - familiarity provides comfort. Comfort sells. Place your identity into a package, into an Apple store, something more easily consumable.