Saturday, March 31, 2018

Amelie von Wulffen at Reena Spaulings


It's almost like the history of painting is a trauma that comes bruising into von Wulfenn's paintings. How images transact through time, in notional reassemblages, incorrect.  Our memory of Matisse is like seeing the past in bad dreams, crushed into the present. We have memory of how painting was, how history functioned, how impressionism was painted, but it's wrong, like your head full of hangover, a painting full of malfunction, its shipment through time arrives damaged. The hematoma is fine.

See too: Amelie von Wulffen at Barbara WeissAmelie von Wulffen at Freedman Fitzpatrick

Friday, March 30, 2018

Jason Fox at Almine Rech


While the imagery has been blunted over the years the psychedelia remains, the optical tricks of overlay and transposition:

"The near-holographic parallax induced by its ever-shifting appearance returns one again and again to the provocation of the content-specific conceit and to its function as a perceptual heuristic. Like the famous gestalt of the duck and rabbit, these portraits were mutually exclusive, such that in order to see one, you had to forget the other. And this is to say nothing of their sites of slippage between representation and abstraction, where, in tandem, they altogether fell away." -S. Hudson
But you should sift though Fox's semi-thorough website for the weirder stuff, the more liquid stuff, find the paintings on sleeping bags that look Berlin Biennial today and made 20 years before.  The baroque form of objects, mocking the minimalist mantra that things "are what they are," because sometimes they are too much, they trick us, have a presence that exudes something that we can't hold at a remove, they are sticky to us, even inside us.

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Jana Euler at dépendance


Has your consumption of news increased dramatically, nauseatingly, in the past year? Feeling bloated at its high volume low satisfaction? has the act of reading the new begun feeling like eating literal newspaper? If Euler "attempts mirroring our contemporary conditions" and " the figures in the paintings act as a metaphor to emphasize the failed power of an individual to accommodate the current rise of technology." it's because Euler's paintings feel like eating the news, both it and Euler's paintings like a just opened lid and staring into the bait to unpack the whole, pulling one referential string and the whole thing deluges like clowns out of cars, only guessing at the number of clowns in the office. How insane it all feels, how microtized to the wind. The thread pulls endlessly, and the sweater never comes. The images today will read different tomorrow. The pace of the snail, has it changed or is the view moving faster around it? How to contend with that.

See too: Jana Euler at Galerie Neu & PortikusJana Euler at Kunsthalle ZürichJana Euler at Bonner Kunstverein

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Cosima von Bonin at Friedrich Petzel


"Von Bonin's post-'90s work anticipates the professional artist's return as full-time manager of her own brand-image.  [...]  Graw describes von Bonin's shift from ephemeral and intensely collaborative projects to the kind of object production befitting an international art star both as a decided "capitulation" to market forces and, paradoxically, as a devious "outperforming" of the market's demands. [...]  In any case, von Bonin's use of style as a means of elaborating games between subjects and objects, between the artist and her works, is as controlling as it is evasive. It is where the contemporary subject loses its distance from the commodity, but it is also the place where distances can be reappropriated and made strange again. " -JKelsey
"Her art is soft and sociable but dangerous underneath" - JFarago
"Von Bonin is no handmaiden to either the marketplace or academia. Somehow she slips betwixt and between these two extremes of our current art-world narrative, indeed creating her own, alternative 'plot.'" -F Hirsch

This seems to be the place where writers stop. Having attempted and failed to peel the stubborn adhesive from the surface they claim, "ah look how stuck together they are!" And admittedly von Bonin's adherence to the commodity - despite every critical attempt to remove it from - is sticky stuff, and eventually one wonders if there is a layer at all, or merely a patch drawn to appear such. And the whole critical art world grouped around attempting to pick quarters painted on the palatial shopping mall floors while above their bent necks the objects transact. The critical establishment hallucinate quarters because they are needed to eat. They stand around in the shape of an old president.
"I, too, wondered whether I could not sell something and succeed in life. For some time I had been no good at anything. I am forty years old... Finally the idea of inventing something insincere crossed my mind and I set to work straightaway." "What is it? In fact it is objects." -Broodthaers.

See too: Simon Denny at MoMA PS1

Monday, March 26, 2018

Lena Henke at Kunsthalle Zürich


Because the turd is a form morphing in a viewer. The dimensional Rorschach, the sculpture everyone makes to turn down and see themselves reflected in the water at, a picture of you for your interpretation. Even looking digested, worn at by smooth muscle of artistic intestine.  How regular are you, how often have you practiced this interpretation, looking at the german shelf of porcelain. What does it mean that it's green, that it's black, there are guides, the internet will tell you its based on the location of the bleeding in the tract. Wiping course woven sheets to clean our concrete of our personal tea leaves at the bottom of the cup, a poop joke.

See too: Alma Allen at Shane Campbell

Sunday, March 25, 2018

Seth Price at Museum Brandhorst


There's just so much institution to this documentation. You feel the presence of the museum, the space, the frame architecture. The thing pulse, veritably breathes with capital, symbolic blood. The cavity, the bone white rib cage and the diaphragm HVAC, ventilated, for our aspiration, our hopes on the brown track running through us. Our institutions that resemble the bodies they are - space for lungs, lights for nutrients, passages for "digestion."  Passing us meals of contemplation, eventually defecates them for our plates and we eat their excitement.

See too: Brian Calvin at Le ConsortiumJef Geys at Essex StreetGaylen Gerber at Emanuel Layr

Friday, March 23, 2018

Wolfgang Tillmans at Galerie Buchholz


The promise of Tillmans' photographs is that maybe we too are living lives worthy of documentation if only our own humdrum was given the micro-attention of such a lovely eye, then we too could be seen, could be seen as worthy, placed on walls, actually be seen. It's a base human impulse, the need to be seen, recognized. Tillmans' eye fills with the promise of this possibility, of someone loving you no matter how banal, even the lowly ogre's onion, which is why all Tillmans' photographs seem to come pulled from a drawer in your parent's house and seeing yourself 30 years younger: the photos aren't great but they come with hammering benevolence attended to creatures we care for, a walloping nostalgia that Tillmans has found as immediate packaging: that the inherently elegiac medium also promises preservation of someone's sight of you.  Which is maybe why Tillman's always evokes comfortable denim, this base promise of finally of someone finally seeing you because your butt finally looks good packaged by the right hand and someone will love you.

Careworn: Susan Cianciolo at Modern Art

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Oa4s at Lodos


The rising ubiquity of the lab, our alchemical noodling in povera forms, roleplay to deal with trauma of not having our own, expressions of our desire for productivity and vitality of scientist's real results, like children who feign adult, play house, to feel like they have one, the human impulse to invent magic, gods, to fill the coldness of their absence, to feel the glow of control, even in invented worlds, until the adults come in and strip the sheets off our nakedness.

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Harald Szeemann at ICA LA


Obvious the all sorts of questions like what it means to recreate exhibitions. And all the weirder that the recreation through the simple ubiquity of its documentation and its outsize viewership now as to then, this, the recreation, will the remembered one. The stubborn block. We look through CAD, through its lens to the object. The document becomes the object seen.

Lucie Stahl at Cabinet


They hyper materiality of Stahl's earlier HiDef gurgitation is traded here - the resin soaked works which worked like soap's tighter attempts at control, sent physicality slipping from grasp, everywhere expelling digital gloss - a slipperiness that this exhibition finds in the cognition of pumping. The concern for wetness and Metaphor's sponge: pumping, like liquidity, milking rooms, the intravenous network of pipes, exchange, capital flow, financial meters, water tables, inelastic demand and liquid assets, dry powdered milk and barreled crude, black and white, gallons and barrels, flood plains and dry market: In 2012 a drought in New Zealand causes the worldwide prices of powdered milk and crude oil to diverge for the first time in a decade, this according to a website tracking such flows, the Progressive Dairyman. The point being the interconnection of flows that deliver also tether us, pipes become bars.

Sunday, March 18, 2018

Yngve Holen at Fine Arts, Sydney


Looking for the ghost in the machine we instead find the designer. We treat objects as if they are magic, acting like a cargo cult, arranging the droppings of the industrial gods like paganists worshipping more technically advanced nations. We place their refuse in our altars. A hole we are to be fed into in trash can colors absorbing into the urban landscape. Objects are designed to affect us, strangely adept at it, advertising like a massive psychologic program and objects are the sediment of it to deploy its energies. But despite every attempt to make technical medical objects sympathetic to us, they are unfortunately cold and this is difficult for us.

See too: Yngve Holen at Kunsthalle BaselYngve Holen at Modern ArtDavid Lieske at MUMOK

Friday, March 16, 2018

Vija Celmins at Matthew Marks


The promise of two ends meeting, of connection, of art's ability to represent; art's promise to conjure the thing itself. The stupidity of this promise.  The sorrow so present in Celmin's work is breakdown guilt of this, which all we are left with instead is brushwork, the skin of thing over an "armature on which I hang my marks and make my art."  The artists and the electrical torture of the sign.

See too: On Kawara at the GuggenheimLutz Bacher at 356 MissionJames Lee Byars at VeneKlasen/Werner

Past: Jorge Pardo

"What may be beleagueredly interesting about Pardo’s practice now - artists for decades attempt “meaning”’s destruction in an intellectual whack-a-mole - to consider here something inconsequential."

Full: Jorge Pardo at 1301PE

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Ad Minoliti at Agustina Ferreyra


An argument had, can a triangle be a funny triangle?, formal objects able to emote subjectivity, or like Mondrian or af Klint a channeling of forces beside themselves. Can objects transacted through history or persons become grounds for conducting identities, become gendered. "How would an aphrodisiac painting look?"

Thomas Ruff at Rüdiger Schöttle


The absolute banality of Ruff against the subjects depicted. Some subjects: Skies littered with stars, explicit sex, people's unique and individual faces: all are given a treatment that is attempted to be at total remove, Ruff's almost struggle to render it boring. All the grandiose pomposity used to describe the "historically and photographically fascinating source material" is given what is akin to pressing ⌘I in photoshop. The measure of the means doesn't necessarily define the ends, but the gesture's simplicity, along with all its attendant "negativity," doesn't so much revitalize the source material, as the PR would imply, as it shows the source - as any other material - as manipulable by the slightest command to alter it indefinitely, completely alter it, at a whim be reduced to complete and utter inversion, and all the stupid simplicity of that.

see too:  Thomas Ruff at S.M.A.K.

Sunday, March 11, 2018

Nancy Lupo at Antenna Space


Encased in Soylent - that complete nutritional replacement, everything the body needs, body powder, and of course us all knowing its green version is people - we couldn't help but see their pale applied flesh as bodies themselves and representations of the increasing plastics inside our own and correspondent sudden and mass fear of endocrine distribution as estrogenic seepage turning a world's men into castrati and a world's water into one giant liquid castration complex; plastics became the Freudian fear, of lost phallus now aerosolized into everything and manufacturing changed overnight in order to allow our cheap crap to come with a new sticker: BPA free. We had to protect masculinity. We had to protect the body described as "fastened to a dying animal," in a poem from time when body/mind distinctions were thought clear and imagined a possibility of being able to slough your flesh and emerge fresh to be pounded shaped into gold and set upon branches to sing like Yeats if our passages weren't so congested with stuff.

Friday, March 9, 2018

Henning Bohl at Karin Guenther


"Chappelle discussed the use of his image on Prince's single, admitt[ing], "That's a Prince judo move right there. … You make fun of Prince in a sketch and he'll just use you in his album cover. What am I going to do, sue him for using a picture of me dressed up like him? … That's checkmate right there."

The above image is actually from Bohl's last Balice Hertling exhibition, but the whole wrap up is summarized in the PR of this one if you wanna play along. It's hard to discern the knot when one is tangled in it. A brilliant tactic to ensnare the critic in the brambles they are ostensibly intended to disentangle, forcing seeing briers for the forest, grounded from the critic's usual ivory vantage, quagmired. Added to the "narrative." CAWD's attempts to remain deaf to artworld festivities like putting headphones on at Christmas and uncle Bohl's hearty and "dialectical" bearhug is impossible to discern as friendly or hostile so that when asked how you feel about Christmas your professional opinion always stated through a hostage's clenched and smiling teeth. Like, neutered. "not the social drama, but its modes of expression" and Bohl's hands proffering the original mugs.

“Sitting Bone” at MAVRA


Hasn't this been like the third Giger chair we've seen in the past year? He's been mentioned in at least 2 press releases (Caroline Mesquita at T293 and Anna Uddenberg at Kraupa-Tuskany Zeidler) and there was for sure another chair at Lomex in their EAT CODE AND DIE. But the last Giger chair on CAD appears to be the Swiss Institute's exhibition of chairs, Fin de Sièclein 2015.  Gigerian chairs simply feel present in the winds of art with its trends for examining bodies through the technologies that are built around them (Lupo, Reaves, Uddenberg, et al), so the skeleton melded  architecture fit for more cushioned parts feels apt.  Chairs are an innuendo for body, an allusive or oblique remark or hint towards the meat that you don't want to be forced say aloud as the gas bag of "human" so you politely place a chair, like those placed in the corners of hotels/lobbies not to be sat in but to politely declare the room capable of relieving your meat baggage, place a surface whose softness designates the degree of welcome to your reception, like you don't want to say butt so you say Sitting Bone.

See too: Caroline Mesquita at T293Anna Uddenberg at Kraupa-Tuskany ZeidlerJessi Reaves at Bridget Donahue

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Josefine Reisch at Noah Klink


Our objects are goo, waxen, like a sneeze frozen into architecture; our paintings are clean, delineated and, again, contain the depth of an iPad, the interface display, flat, there. The painting's display technology, the objects warm body. And the scarves before and the floating papers here held up like the skin between, and the tulips a flesh technology for beauty.

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Aaron Angell at Koppe Astner


As the world feels closer and closer to destabilization, autocratic leaders, isolationism, far-right tolerance, moves closer towards its end we find solace looking towards the primitive technologies we might find as our future, and the deities we will worship in the trees we once had.

Monday, March 5, 2018

Martin Soto Climent at Michael Benevento & Yuji Agematsu at The Power Station

(link: Martin Soto ClimentYuji Agematsu)

The enrapture of sensitivities, enwrapment, a container allowing movement, transaction. The Amazon box that allows its sales; cardboard a larger problem than the items it contains. The packaging that makes up the mass majority of waste.  Shouldn't we be speaking more of wrapper than "content", the mass majority of garbage that we have become hostages who love their captors to, enshrine odes to our hurt.

Saturday, March 3, 2018

Albert Mertz at Croy Nielsen


Perhaps stronger conceptual forebear than the Supports/Surfaces group to the likes of Dianna Molzan for whom Hainley gave the lovely description of "voguing their structure" i.e. striking the poses of painting, brandishing its look, flaunting itself, but perhaps "Deconstruction of the furnishing of painting" Mertz programmatic version -  "serv[ing] as an intellectual exercise, declining all conceivable cases of painterly possibilities, but lastly also becomes a physical exercise for the viewer since ‘the labour of the audience ought to be the same as that of the artist’" - best meets the definition given on Paris is Burning as "a kind of institutionalized showing-off."

Friday, March 2, 2018

Joseph Holtzman at Bel Ami


"After all, style—clothing, curtains, the smell of someone’s body, a social circle, a painterly movement—requires a material subject, someone with an instinct for impressions. [...] a close investigation of the details that make up a body, and the surfaces and the colors, which inform its moods, instincts, and mannerisms. Style, ventriloquized through painting, drives the show home." - pr

We're trying to rescue "style" away from its pejorative kidnapping by the schools of it. That, apart from an individual's subscription to a genre of style, (bauhaus, hipster, monderist, minimalist, bobo chic, et al), style is an individual's outward expression of a subjectivity, even the unfashionable, plain, manifest "style": did conceptual art not dress itself in the style of bureaucracy.  This distinction is clear in Holtzmann's interior design magazine which inverted the "shelter magazine" template, no longer publishing authority its readers were meant to subscribe to and replicate in their own homes, but rather a document of other's own idiosyncratic expression, famously documenting a diaper fetishist's personal crib. The more or less latent sexual desire that sediments as objects, homes, and design, having a lot to do with art. And so if the pr is seeming quick to defense of Holtzman's pizzazz, its because the most of us have confused flourish as "style" and thus puerile, and not as the grave expression of our own internals, painted on marble, and heavy, like flesh laid over bone.