Wednesday, July 28, 2021

Magnus Frederik Clausen, David Ostrowski at Spazio Orr, Brescia


The less you try the closer you are to getting something uninhibited, almost natural. You get raw wood, a brushstroke that looks free. Like it's not in a cage. Of course no one really thinks it is. But you maybe get to imagine it. 

see too: David Ostrowski at SundogsDavid Ostrowski at Jir Sandel

Tuesday, July 27, 2021

Yona Lee at Fine Arts, Sydney


The objects of capital, our world, are strange enough. So they become the hieroglyphs of the gallery world, moved into cubes for contemplation. Artists perform the rituals. We glean a ritualized understanding. 

 Past: Yona Lee

"You can attach anything to anything today. A subway pole becomes a mop, runs plumbing, becomes lamp, attaches a table for when we're all stuck underground. The signs get slippery, confused (the thin difference between a barrier pole or a handrail.) This capitalist surrealism that seems inherent to our age - symbolic orders melt to some other demand. Efficiency - the invisible hand pressing everything into everything else, together, the same."

Yona Lee at Fine Arts, Sydney

Past: Judith Hopf 

"Each brick lain a decision by the artist to continue."

Read full: Judith Hopf at Museion, Judith Hopf at kaufmann repetto

Monday, July 26, 2021

Bradley Kronz at Lars Friedrich, Berlin


Kronz has shown everywhere, making the rounds, leaving an exhibition at every cool young space, once. Sorta like the work, unable tell where we're at, what scale we exist on. Is this a model for something, is this a representation, or is it an object? Everything happens only once. (Except for the time it happens 3 times.) Then it's off somewhere else. Never firm ground to stand on. A fun press release. Weird enough to be interesting, scrappy enough to leave you skeptical. A friend you can't form a relationship to.

see too: Manfred Pernice at Galerie Neu

Friday, July 23, 2021

Hamishi Farah at Fri Art


Pusha T and Drake's longstanding beef ended with Drake having to release a statement admitting, yes, he was hiding a child and, yes, that was him in blackface. It exploded. People said Pusha took it too far. Drake vocally conceding the beef would have been less of an L than his hand forced in apology.  Beef was supposed to remain in the land of publicity grabbing headlines, in hyperreality, in the game. I.e. Children, etc., shouldn't be involved. Farah's own "going nuclear" would also involve children that should maybe be left out of the game's foibles. Do you see where this is going? For those seeking beef's reportage: After Schutz excused her razzle dazzled murdered black child through her relation as a mother, Farrah, no stranger to surgical summer, painted Schutz's child. It exploded. Farrah's painting of the child was censored in Monopol, labeled an "act of revenge" (language seemingly no German paper used to describe Schutz's painting of someone else's child.) The jujitsu here is black belt. Returning all the stakes of painting - that artists are quick to claim in the same breath they claim to be outside of -  into the real. The virtual sacrosanct of poised conceptuality - "in the game" of hyperreality - Farrah is all too canny in, happy to, throw into the artistically hot water it supposedly was already boiling. Basically, if you want stakes in art, here are your stakes. This is isn't conceptual, these are people's lives, not necessarily all in the game. Not a game. Farah, reasonably, has beef. And there is more of it. His instagram, @merlincarpenter, documents another beef with none other than. Carpenter's once conceptually excused racist joke, that he seemingly would prefer to disappear, Farah continuously drags back into the mud of the real. 

Choosing a side in a beef is always part of the fun. And your choice here is going come with political questions on the limits of art's unquestioned terrain, stakes, Debord, and how much hyper faux reality we can take from rappers. But I fucking hate Drake.

 Past: Lewis Hammond at Casa Masaccio

"Dark in amber, scenes held in brown glass. A "wine dark sea," a Homerian world devoid of azure. ... scenes reflected in another substance, using a mirror to inspect the bathroom, ... An aberration in the glass or in you."

 Past: Lewis Hammond at Casa Masaccio

Past: Michael E. Smith

"A google search says no one has used to word tumor in any online writing about Smith. Which seems odd; his objects seem awfully affected by a lot of lumps, red dots, growths on institution and inflated with resin crusts. Teratomas: the classic hair and teeth of your twin in your tummy. You can google pictures of these, they actually look a lot like Smith's more "bodily" objects. Of growths without cause, find a potato in our eye, the "categorically promiscuous." Things sliding into new subjects like bare knees across asphalt..."

"Threat of bodily violence (a body to become goo as any other) is implicit to art that treats materials as categorically promiscuous (surreal), e.g. if you can put puffer fish under the table's summer sky, inflate them like footballs with whale ears, aren't you as wiling to place skulls at your knees. The disregard for the categorical order is like gore, crushing bodies."

"It's a cliche at this point to say that Smith makes the mundane object estranged. And in a sea of so many surrealists currently operating, less than helpful. Estrangement is today's go-to strategy. Smith's is individuated, each object set off so that we can no longer "know" the sculpture, eroding a complete vision, and opening a distrust. A psychological sliver. We cannot know the object, its relation to other objects is broken, either categorically (there is no category to place the object within, surrealist) or psychologically (the unknown threat). The rocking chair I project from the two elegant bones still in contact with the substrate of the real is not the same as the one in your head. This unknown destabilizing of our ability to conceptualize the objects in equitable terms to exchange with another -both objects and other people - (eroding the material semio-substrate with which our exchange is based) breaching a distrust, is its sinister quality."

"You can never be certain you've seen all the butterflies, their artwork is everywhere."

Click for full: Michael E. Smith at AtlantisMichael E. Smith at 500 Capp Street Foundation, Michael E. Smith at Sculpture Center, Michael E. Smith at Michael Benevento, Michael E. Smith at Zero, Michael E. Smith at Lulu, Michael E. Smith at Susanne Hilberry,

Thursday, July 22, 2021

Mathis Collins at Crèvecoeur


Perviously there was a speaker for an eye, which makes a metaphoric sense for the haptic reversal of carving. Seeing a feel. The vibration of carving, a touch without. The labor dabbles the surface. While Guston's heavy belabored stroke plodded its anxiety, the sweat here seems less anxious than proof of work, not frivolous, not quite etched in stone, but heading there.

Wednesday, July 21, 2021

Ceal Floyer Massimo at Minini, Brescia


Historical anti-retinal trends led to concerns with meaning, to an audience's battles with "getting it." Many things were written, both for and against. But eventually getting it was the prize, was the humor, conceptual art distilled to its simplest form, comedy. The set-up, delivery and a vast emptiness. But these begin toying with something different. Almost nothing to get, attempts at non-meaning, attempts on its life. Anti-thought art. A head "kept clear" with the sound of one hand clapping, masturbation pleasure.

 Past: Peter Fend

"Art has been co-opted for worse things than environmental boostering. Fend's utopic aspects seem nice if not necessarily utilitarian, but since when has art been confronted with actualities. Art is a space without expectations of internal success, of even internal logic. ... giving the boring problems of our coming environmental cataclysm at least ostensibly interesting solutions. ... ideas are less the feasible-solutions-for-actualization than they are acts of branding and dissemination, where being excited-for is itself the solution. Whether or not you feel excited is yours."

"... How can one invest in getting Musk to stop?..."

Read full: Peter Fend at Museo NivolaPeter Fend at EmbajadaPeter Fend at Essex Street

 Past: Ceal Floyer at Aargauer Kunsthaus

"...cleverness - the set-up, tension and click of conclusion- and its bathetic pull, "this interplay of expectation and disappointment." ... less fun than sinisterly aware of their exchange of the broken sad comedy of puns as like existentially it, this small disappointment threatening to replace understanding with "getting it," our world as a series of painfully dumb effects."

 Full: Ceal Floyer at Aargauer Kunsthaus

Tuesday, July 20, 2021

Ryan Huggins, Jacob Mason-Macklin at PAGE (NYC)

First there was zombie figuration, now headlines declare Figuration Fatigue. No longer tired painting but tired viewers. The blame shifts. Our eyes weary. And it's true, there is a "diminished emotional responsiveness to a stimulus after repeated exposure to it." Ostensibly time will sort this out, but is it true? Or does first claimant get spoils. Looking new is often more important than being new. How many times has assemblage been rekindled by the fresh dumpsters outside artist studios, a new trash appearing different than Rauschenberg's? In a long enough view eventually everything might return to garbage, and we sort through it then I guess as artifacts. 

Monday, July 19, 2021

Past: Elliott Jamal Robbins at Kai Matsumiya

"Enough emotional dissonance eventually causing psychologic desensitization, feeling a lot like living slumber.

Full: Elliott Jamal Robbins at Kai Matsumiya

 Past: Alan Ruiz at Bad Reputation

 "... the displayed droppings of dominant culture, broken into artifacts, and presented it in our white altars to press heads against it. We used to draw aurochs on cave walls; we relocate the world into art, to make it manipulable in our realm, sandbox, aesthetics. To stand in for control. Aesthetics becomes the religion of fictionalized understanding. It substitutes its little problem for the one big problem. And therefore claims knowledge, and thus domain.
If the dominance of mass culture includes threat to diminish art, [a diminishing] that we could call castration, then art's transmuting that culture into fetish item is classic Freud: it is "a token of triumph over the threat of castration and a protection against it." i.e. You can't cut off what I own of yours."

 Past: Alan Ruiz at Bad Reputation

Saturday, July 17, 2021

Past: Oscar Tuazon at Le Consortium & Paradise Garage

"See, generally these things are so boring and ubiquitous, we don't notice them. These everyday things. So Tuazon uses all the common ways of making things, but assembles them in different ways that our brains aren't bored with, that allows you to recognize or see what your brain would normally be too bored to see. So you notice even the boring stuff. See he has a feti-, er, intense affinity for the protestant, er, blue-collar, or like, see, he appreciates the common job, son. The vernacular, er, that's why nothing is that spectacular, that interesting. The muted tones. It's a moral ethic, son. Have you ever seen Bruce Nauman's "Setting a good corner?" Of course not you're five. Right"

... or like those dog-eared books with cross-sections, cut-intos, of like houses and steamships? See Tuazon's sculptures are like that. You get to see everything, you notice the structure, you glean a moral appreciation for hard work. For the structure, son. Yes, son, endlessly romantic..."

Oscar Tuazon at Le Consortium & Paradise Garage
Past: Cathy Wilkes

"Since sculptural figuration’s wastelanding after modernism, its return in inhumanist impulse made sense in conceptual and post-minimal fallout. The humanist passe was instead fit into the acceptable accounting methods of the 60's ruling doctrine, e.g. Nauman’s uncanny serialization of it. It continued time and artist again until it started actually resembling the body reflected in cold capital, looking prescient for whole new reasons...."

full: Cathy Wilkes at Kunstmuseum LinzCathy Wilkes at Tramway

Friday, July 16, 2021

Past: Paul P.

"...There shouldn't be this much desire, resting on the surface, as if the surface itself exuded it [...] And P.'s structure become excuse to hang painting's flowers, blooms, cause shimmers in paint. Look how the painter's hand trembles. ...   factories for desire. The steam is hung by painter. ... Do these men sweat, or does the painter sweat for them? The glass of fashion. Desire placed on like a mask... the 'expression is from Page 18 of the Victoria’s Secret catalogue.'..."

Read full: Paul P. at Lulu & Queer ThoughtsPaul P., B. Wurtz at Cooper Cole

Thursday, July 15, 2021

Lisa Williamson Amplifier Tanya Bonakdar, Los Angeles


They're always like a half of a sculpture. Like the other part should be somewhere nearby. Like a piece pulled out of IKEA both, some assembly required. Something missing.

Wednesday, July 14, 2021

Srijon Chowdhury at Foxy Production


Drip with meaning. Or glisten with it. The other one glows. That one prickles. Down there that one has firework flowers that burst with it. A moonglow to spotlight it. These are the painterly wreaths that halo meaning. Bestow objects a blessing. In a video game the object would hover and spin. In a novel, the detective would would pull them from earth for a magnified look. The monolith us monkeys dance around, point at. They are the MacGuffin. The monolith only as meaningful as the plot/painting can ascribe it. The actual meaning is in this means to distribute meaning. 
Past: Peter Wächtler

"... an Edenic earnestness as if unspoilt by social awareness, and reattempting it through the mistakes of a Forest Gump or incompetent detective still winning the hearts if not criminal with immaculate sincerity, which of course isn’t true, but the interest lay in ascertaining the discrepancy, the disorientation of its irony."

Past: Peter Wächtler at JoseyPeter Wächtler at Reena Spaulings

Tuesday, July 13, 2021

Alexandra Noel at Antenna Space, Shanghai


CAWD wrote the release for this. Go check it and the show. 

Past: Alexandra Noel

"... a psychic mess, more pollution than collage, tinged with repression. The shadow of a plane is the specter haunting here, but throughout is an "offness" that is more motion sickness than fear. ...  Noel's light too, toxic, the haze as permanent fixture, everything feeling smogged, poisoned. Pollution as repression, spectacular sunsets, and black oil beneath feet. The 9/11 in everyone's bedroom."

Full: Alexandra Noel at Freedman Fitzpatrick, Atlantis 

Monday, July 12, 2021

Teresa Baker at Pied-á-terre


Crust composition, stitched twigs, punk weavings, arranging "painting" like a conductor waving his hands to conjure the cultural myth music. 

Sunday, July 11, 2021

SIGNA at Simian & Angélique Aubrit, Ludovic Beillard at Centre d'Art Contemporain La Synagogue

We had always predicted Wilkes to come back, but never expected its haunting to be literalized into performance. Nor in matching colors. Wilke's materialism no longer enough, we need stronger ghosts.  

see too: Cathy Wilkes 

Saturday, July 10, 2021

Past: Joanne Greenbaum

"... gentility balanced with an undercutting maximalism, like a dog having found the birthday cake to lay it out once again on the patterned rug.

"the confusion of painterly terms, parsing the difference in Greenbaum's marks between accident and expression, calculated or automatism. The categories get blurry in regurgitating expressive modes, flaunting its social codes ... always teasing something that we might find repulsively not-painting, irrational.

"... the schizo positioning of painting today, in which everyone wants a subjectivity expressed but no one wants human expression. The hysteric is the ability for the human to appear through the grate of order; social, relational, capital, or artistic."

Joanne Greenbaum at CroneJoanne Greenbaum at Richard Telles

Wednesday, July 7, 2021

Leda Bourgogne at QBBQ's

Really got everything.

Monday, July 5, 2021

Gerrit Frohne-Brinkmann at Noah Klink, Berlin


Little hosts, infected with virus, because their users wanted love. We find such odd proxies for ourselves, we are able to anthropomorphize at distance. Find identification with Wall-E robots rather than corpulent humans. The stupid magic of little underdog computer as effigies, set to slow burn.
Past: Darren Bader

"that if we're going to take seriously the idea of dead fire bricks arranged gravenly on floors, or water become tree, 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

Sunday, July 4, 2021

Sarah Rapson at Modern Art


As our arts fight against the endless behind-glassing of virtualization, the distressed look of materiality is in right now. But these seem less about flaunting swatches of a quickly etherealizing world than about an insistence on the material substrates of our thought. A reminder that these are the moldy objects we build our empire on. 2,000 years of grandiose diction projected on slowly eroding blankets. We proclaim "painting now and forever." In reality it will last as long as it's cared for. Not so much painting/materiality as the loss of. Be careful.

see too: Lutz Bacher at Galerie Buchholz and Sarah Rapson at Essex Street

 Past: Sarah Rapson

"While early Conceptual Art was interested in the document ... its second generation is a bit more lossy, interested in the fossil, more precisely the fossilization, that slow decomposition into eternality, history. Recoups its own acidification, hazing, foxing, all the condition reports it will accumulate. ...  a pathos in the materials we find to mediate our touch to the world.

"It would not take a freudian to posit why particularly women appear to be more sensitive to material conditions of the world. Like, while Kosuth was concerned for all the mysteries of "Chair," Wex and Mary Kelly were like yes, but we also get pregnant. The "cerebral" of men's white concerns was treated as the higher plane and, for all its agnostic posturing, the "conceptual" allied itself with a reverence akin the religious divinity it ostensibly exiled. Men, oblivious to their own bodies that had never been in question by culture, had the privilege to etherealize themselves above everyone's heads to some assumed universal while women's were increasingly entrenched in politic ground war...."

"looking "pure," like objectivity, removing the human. ... Of course this was the lie of any commodity: that the clean aluminum sheets comprising boxes or laptops weren't simply wiped of their indentured sweat."

Full: Lutz Bacher at Galerie Buchholz and Sarah Rapson at Essex Street

Friday, July 2, 2021

Group Show at The Downer


It's courageous, setting your art against the outside, to compete with the real. This is space of painting's "pure idiocy." Its hard headed survival. Or the PR more descriptively, "On the whole, [painting] is fully unbothered by its detractors and lumbers on, buttressed by history and money. Like Don Draper telling some irate underling that’s trying to shame him, “I don’t think about you at all.”" Painting is "this invincible thing that is constantly at war with itself is exhilarating." A stupid animal surviving in spite of itself, protected by some aura, which we all love to argue endlessly what. Art, as our collective cloud based MMORPG. As long as there's players, the game continues. 

Thursday, July 1, 2021

David Korty at Derek Eller Gallery


Laying somewhere in a lineage between Carrol Dunham, David Reed, Math Bass, painting becomes cipher, a code for it, turned into its puzzle pieces. PR: figures "haunting me from logos and bygone cartoons, advertisements meant to sell desires more than childhood entertainments." The wacky fun of painting converted to information, iconographies of, which connote but don't mean. We feel like we could make sense of these, connecting the dots between its puzzled parts. But we won't, they are their scrambled non-sequitur. What is important to note is that painting converted to symbols for it.

Wednesday, June 30, 2021

Past: Stefan Tcherepnin

"Like Rat and Bear before them their best feature is banality, their inertness, don't really do much of anything, the muppets grown and birdbrained, as boring as any of us, taking on the roles of young adults, drinking, watching TV, sinking Karaoke, acting as neanderthals, getting all the same shows as Tcherepnin."

Monday, June 28, 2021

Richard Sides at Schiefe Zähne


The inability to structure information under a rubric, to organize, like CAWD writ previous: "the new drug of conceptual art is the complete meltdown of sense."  This has been true for a while, e.g. Berger's diamond ads next to war atrocities. And Wolfson weaponized incoherence into a final boss, irony. But the version here is more kin Carissa Rodriguez, Darren Bader, Morag Keil. Maybe Keith Farquhar. It's less attack than a slow trip, an inability to find hard ground, the more one looks, the more information, the more the world liquifies, almost psychedelically incoherent, the world begins to fall apart. Psychosemiotnaut?
The fallout of [this] semiotic manicism/collapse/supernova, of the 00’s assemblage (Harrison, Genzken, Pernice et al) and the exploding of Unmonumental’s detritus, left the next generation picking cultural rubble. Artists became post-apocalyptic cargo-cult, artists, still wanting to believe, began to reassemble totems of cultural meaning. Staedelschulites rehashing a form of ready-made-marxist-surrealism, societie's tchotchkies made to “speak” the tongues of the Invisible Hand, worship of gods who must be crazy. Post-Lieske - the real rabble of Neue Alte Brucke, Pro-Choice, etc. - Ceccaldi, Yngve Holen and everyone else - rearranging/collaging/juxtaposing the signs of capital as some sort of anti-altar to them - the whole "arrangements" phenomenon, tableaus of cultural artifacts, seen again and again and again on the rugs of art fairs everywhere - finally hitting bedrock in the strip-mine of Darren Bader just arranging capital’s objects on the floor.

see too: Carissa Rodriguez at WattisRachel Harrison at Whitney MuseumMorag Keil at Real Fine Arts

Saturday, June 26, 2021

Inga Danysz at Sydney, Sydney


Been seeing a lot of slumping glass lately. I can't even think of all who, Kate Newby, Kelly Akashi, but others unremembered. Jean-Luc Moulène, etc. Is that that glasswork is a craft return, or does glass have particular attributes. Glinty. Liquid jewel? The firm/soft thing? Maybe why Torbjorn Rodland took a photo of a penis behind melt glass. To desumblimate its soft allure? A chair is a just an innuendo for a body. 

Friday, June 25, 2021

Christopher Williams at Capitain Petzel


Williams once admitted in an interview to looking at Contemporary Art Daily every morning, and one wonders how he feels about it now having had the scene slip so far from his particular register of work. Does he even recognize his anomaly in the deluge of representation? Even what might be considered his progeny - say Cameron Rowland - have rid themselves of the Knightly Cold Cuts opacity, with work that clearly delineates itself. Because we don't want opacity anymore, we want clearly established intent. This probably makes Williams important to moment, a medicinal flavor. But the en abyme of institutional/self reflection requires an outside party to discern the navel's tea leaves. Otherwise it's just tying up the institution in your ornate slick personal knots to look at your button. Otherwise it's just kink. 

 Past: Christopher Williams 

"Williams' institutional mirroring - reusing walls, indexing the gallery, reflecting and marking the gallery - its ostensible critique also simply multiplies and reiterates its institutional halos."

"MoMA finally succumbing to its role mass incarcerating tourists - its expanding culture-industrial complex finally warranting destruction of neighborly competition to further house its prisoner-patrons - yet, MoMA, still desiring relevancy to the system, art, whose name it bears and not merely to the throngs from which it happily accepts 25$, delivers the academic-respectable retrospective of Kapital p Photography godhead, Christopher Williams.

"Walking through the space it’s a nice gesture but hard to see the decades’ work or installation subtlety amongst the brambles of families asking themselves aloud, literally “When do we get to see Matisse?” the Frenchman whose tickets are timed before you can even get in line and so the Williams show acts as a sort of slumbering-area for the masses awaiting the carnivale nearby. The punchline to this whole joke, is that there is no punchline at all, the wall texts have been eliminated..."

"Commuting in the same deception, that no amount of looking will explain the object/image, they are representations, deferring elsewhere, and never conceding what lay beneath."

All: Christopher Williams 

Thursday, June 24, 2021

Kye Christensen-Knowles at LOMEX


I'm reminded. Recombinative aesthetics. Like how Grimes recent aesthetic is 9th generation Akira ran though 15 years of Deviant Art, echoed so long until it becomes its own Grimes' "new." How in the storm of West's Ye arrival samples slipped though the stream of producers, missed credits and Francis apologizing afterward. Leading the label head of the stolen artist to lament that Kanye was "another case of an artist who capitalizes on culture ... and because culture trickles up, this means we are all basically working for him." This is likely what the PR refers to as its "degenerative history." Is anyone lauded for collecting Michael Whelan originals? Instead it's the katamari dredge of art that absorbs it into star. The found VHS tape of history, which feels like an artifact instead of a representation. This is a problem for all culture but it does show there's still a crowning distinction between high and low and who gets to wear it.

Past: Tala Madani

"Conjuring in the virtual theater of imagination's Matrix-like plane ... the drawing of imagination from an abyss, that, like Bacon's claustro-realms, become spaces for enacting and enacted belittlements and torture, and what this means for Madani in psychoanalytic terms is hard to tell ..."

"When Madani's brush smears shit it bears the shiver of actual ... because it feels someone imagine doing it. Reading a story of a murder feels less horrible than finding, even a fictional, a scrawled notebook saying how they would murder. ..."

"The paint - which painting professors will be quick to remind you is just fancy dirt suspended in fats - equates to shit, or cake, or flesh. Light is sprayed like urine. Children bear the face of men, bear the brunt of Madani."

Click here to read full: Tala Madani at secession, Tala Madani at David KordanskyTala Madani at 303 Gallery

Wednesday, June 23, 2021

Wangechi Mutu at Gladstone Gallery, New York


Last time's nguva sculptures had at least owned the slickness of bronze. Palpable. These seem more bronze than myth.  These are monuments to, maybe rather than of. If we're having big badass sci-fi-myth sculpture.. then the sculpture part of that phrase seems the least interesting. The Alien-like pool in the other room seems to do it better. Towards a narrative art that is neither monument nor film setting.

Monday, June 21, 2021

Reina Sugihara at Lavender Opener Chair


These look old. Probably because no one paints this way anymore. (Maybe Cathy Wilkes' rare painting?) Probably because at some point it became important to not look like 2nd generation abex, because that looked dated, because looking new stood in for being new, and thus painting adopted technology like acrylics and cartoons and metal plating and whatever other process it could cling to its surface. But, with a wide enough historical lens, all painting condenses into the same gooey dumb thing. And these just stand out as strange as weird good things.

Sunday, June 20, 2021

Past: Yuji Agematsu

"What is contained in a day, what does a date contain, etc. If you pressed anyone on these questions they would admit the hairiness of the situation. But that isn't how we act, when we write press releases the questions themselves are preventatives against answers. This because "raising questions" is, we are told, the power of art. Which makes actually answering its questions a loser's affair - the questions must be kept on life support; Art, for its shareholders, must be eternal. (And thus why thousands of artists continue redeploying On Kawara's essential question. It becomes a mannered tool for evoking, but not answering, a question.) This is one of the worst aberrations of art. There is no critique if that critique never cancels. "Our fingerprints are ours, but we cannot be created from them."

"Expelled from cultural bowels onto streets and corners, and hook it to the intellect, placing the ass into the head, its virtual cubes, its broadcast mechanism, its hermetic boxes, proffering it, holding it in hands up, saying look at this shit. The new ecologies of waste. In old Germania the toilets were backwards and you would poop onto a shelf so you could face your fear. Look at what you had done. The ropes of your making on stark white planes. It had some medical diagnostic purpose, to know what you had expelled, reading tea leaves in shallow pools, to determine how our cultural digestion was going."

"Our growing attraction to trash..."
"Like Tetsumi Kudo's radioactive ecology, or Thek's plexi-flesh, Agematsu's warm materials of human cast-offs reanimated... Agematsu's delicate compositions as ecosystems, precious, resituating the natural to include microplastics dissolved into heavy saturation islands in the great pacific beverage...bears witness to the beauty of Butterfly collections of petri dish human waste, packaged"

Friday, June 18, 2021

Past: Jon Pylypchuk at Petzel

 ... a more formal torture of our facial tendencies, is now a wanton mass, a poopy stuff. Pylypchuk had stretched pareidolia to absurdity; you can disfigure a face into extreme proportions and still see human. ... Proportions were used with a comic's timing. The endless use of little arms, doofy mouths, and hyperbolized eyes like a child aroused to Saturday morning TV. Affective little terrors. Infantile features triggering nurture responses in adults. ...

Full: Jon Pylypchuk at Petzel

Thursday, June 17, 2021

Past: Kayode Ojo at Praz-Delavallade

...perfume advertisement sedimented as sculpture. Awaiting moistened Drake to pour and offer, not just a drink but a life. ... The smallest narrative allows the biggest projection. We like chintz, and better any excuse to play it as ironic, look down upon it. How much artworld glitz comes with heavy justification, armor against actually liking it. Excused glamor are why artists were invented. ...

Past: Kayode Ojo at Praz-Delavallade

Wednesday, June 16, 2021

Past: Emanuel Rossetti at Karma International

... an entertaining moment of alterity, bizarro-real, in which in moral hopes we must realign ourselves to its products, our experience of it, recognition delayed, and the static charge of our disorientation in finding an identification to hold onto, objects which connote but don't mean...

Past: Emanuel Rossetti at Karma International

Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Analia Saban at Tanya Bonakdar


Not even a metaphor, a literalization? Weaving subject matter into canvas. When de Rooij did wove value, it seemed about its dumbness, and when Arcangel printed it, it definitely was. When Baldessari accumulated his own credentials on a painting, that too seemed just incredibly dumb. Laughable. Funny. That's not to say that is what these are, or have "been done before." No the point is that these are different. These seem serious. Process-based abstraction, the fallout of conceptual art, the technology for myth, woven into object.

see too: Analia Saban at Sprüth Magers

Past: Analia Saban at Sprüth Magers

Making things look like other things with other more culturally cached things all put in the frame of the biggest cache of all, that frame, art. Ostensibly this is meaningful, reweaving signs and myths into themselves, but it feels like doing imaginary math, a premise to simply get us to argue about the answer, which makes the formula appear interesting.

Past: Analia Saban at Sprüth Magers

Monday, June 14, 2021

Past: Lu Yang at M Woods

"so steeped so heavily in camp as to be quite soggy on such rigid concepts - whether this is a critique of culture or fantasy for it doesn't matter anymore, trying to out-absurd culture is impossible but look how far it's gotten us, Genzken too"

Past: Lu Yang at M Woods

Sunday, June 13, 2021

Something About Us at Fons Welters, Amsterdam

A show of fragile candy, soft and hard shell, capturing its affect in an art lozenge. Swallowable. Affect has always been important to art, machismo sizing of the expressionists, the bureaucratic cool of conceptualism. Affect connoted the reverence you should have for the church objects. Which ostensibly released meaning. But now affect is itself the captured thing, the feeling, packaged. 

Saturday, June 12, 2021

Past:  Patricia L. Boyd at Christian Andersen & Front Desk Apparatus

"But what does this system produce? Nothing except an image of itself. The artist refers to the work as an “exhaustion engine.” It simultaneously represents and realizes the use and expenditure of her artistic resources: a commission fee and a studio at the NASA-grade production facilities" -Annie Godfrey Larmon Artforum
Someone once said that Sports were simply an advanced random number generator for creating stories. Sometimes art seems a similarly tangential means for the same.

Peter Hujar Backstage Maureen Paley, London


Hujar is obviously in the majors. But the photos now enter this procession of art's holy spirit, aggrandizement of its moment, its beautification. This is how photography steals souls.  Turned into little jewels. 

See too: Moyra Davey, Peter Hujar at Galerie Buchholz

 Past: Moyra Davey, Peter Hujar at Galerie Buchholz

And art often feels like a process, technology, for imprinting nostalgia. Casting banality in bronze, silver, with a halo of rose. "Nostalgia a toxic substance used to preserve our memories in formaldehyde's rose tinted veil." Photography provides "immediate packaging: that inherently elegiac medium also promises preservation of someone's sight of you." So you get to preserve your recognition like pickled pigs and call it romantic. Nostalgia's artistry becomes its own technology. 

 Full: Moyra Davey, Peter Hujar at Galerie Buchholz

Thursday, June 10, 2021

A Maior at Kunsthalle Freeport, Porto


Our best guess, that Yu Yuan is the mother/"mistress"/owner or maybe just matriarch(?) of A Maior, the Portugal based general store* with an ostensible curatorial program, (and curating the Kunsthalle Freeport, Porto.) We're probably wrong, and probably the point is a bit of confusion, which is occasionally fun. Whoever she is she seems important. The world has championed less with more. At least some of our "mistresses" deserve billboards. It's fun to burn space to our flowers.

*Open Mondays to Saturdays, from 9:30 to 19:00. Sundays and Holidays, from 10:00 to 19:00. Selling mostly everything for your home, except food.

See too: Marte Eknæs at A MAIOR

Wednesday, June 9, 2021

Devin Troy Strother Smoking And Painting Broadway Gallery, New York


"My mother loves Christmas, and she collects all sorts of Christmas-themed ceramics to decorate her home. ... There were almost never any black Santas. So, my mother took matters into her own hands. She would buy up white Santas, angels, and carolers and turn them black using a jar of enamel paint. I’ve always thought about how this was my first brush with painting, and how it has had a major impact on my thinking and art practice."

This does seem like an apt metaphor/parable(?). These paintings, they've got the color of Christmas, but with the white parts painted black. 

Tuesday, June 8, 2021

Past: Benjamin Echeverria at Parapet Real Humans

"You apply a video filter, you belabor the painting. Both become search for means to make 'residue' appear, of time, of warmth we're after. A weathering effect you can turn on and off like rain."

Full: Benjamin Echeverria at Parapet Real Humans

Monday, June 7, 2021

Matthew Lutz-Kinoy at Salon Berlin, Berlin


Someone once called this "bath house abstraction" - a decor for lounge couches, and Lutz-Kinoy's do often appear as the background to activities that accredit them.

Sunday, June 6, 2021

Past: Nancy Lupo

"Like eye goo, stuff's service is its waste, a continual sloughing, so we can remain fresh, clean. Stuff accumulates, piles, is shed. Stuff is quasi things, is transient, transactional. A disposable fork is, like, quintessential stuff.."

"Stuf becomes subject. Curdles a skin, a flake to slough. Contaminates, spreads. "Disposable." "Flushable." Problems in city pipes, amassing with congealed human grease to create clogs from hell. "Behold The Fatberg: London's 130-Ton, 'Rock-Solid' Sewer Blockage" A world unable to contain our disposability. Reamasses elsewhere.."

Read full: Nancy Lupo at SydneyNancy Lupo at Kristina KiteNancy Lupo at Swiss InstituteNancy Lupo at 1857Nancy Lupo at Antenna Space

Eleanor Ray Nicelle Beauchene, New York


Painting some lost air in the "middle distance" - air infected with some ghost. A Tuymans' photograph falls toward unfocus, like lenses shifted, or just before you faint. A world though some kind of frost. The old wavy glass of Morandi's subjectivity but mictrotized, etched, woozy. Afflicted with heatstroke? A heat shimmer. Even the cold landscapes have humid hot air. The edges are liquid hard, but their interior a gooey center. And melting. Corot's plein air as locked up as a Maureen Gallace summer, seen through Morandi's glass and receding.

Thursday, June 3, 2021

Past: Tom Allen

Flowers are the lighted landing strips of insect air travel. The Vegas sign advertising sex and nectar to bees, birds. What did Zizek say about tulips, "an open invitation to 'Come and screw me.'"... this crass evolutionary productivity might be why flowers are called "the lowest of the genres," gaming the system with hardwired desire. However what artist has ever been above cheating? Flowers are an experimental-constant through which an artist may perform tortures on a cultural concept of beauty...

"...more Berghain than cottagecore - to paraphrase the press release. The pleasure here seems in twisting the dial to the humming point between saccharine pleasure and spoiled overripeness - between day and night - a painting your mother "likes" with uncertainty... pleasure in this sweet spot hum.

Tastes change however, but let these be a marker of 2020s - that this was the edge, the waver between sickness and wealth. Painting as stakes planted, this was the limit. So if you start to love these, see how far we've moved."

Past; Jamian Juliano-Villani

"Like Ernst's graphic novels cut up from the cheap illustrations of culture, surrealism and pop go in hand, the abject impoverishment of images today begets a mash-culture on amphetamines, channeling, thieving, and mixing everything and more regardless of flavor. Ingredients in the style John Wesley placed into Albert Oehlen's 3D render blender on Rosenquist's chop setting all in the backyard BBQ of Hannah Hoch. The point today is to accelerate the katamari like sludge while maintaining, like Ernst, a semblance of representational order, to make the regurgitation uncanny, seem, somehow, true..."

Full: Jamian Juliano-Villani at Tanya Leighton

Isabel Nuño de Buen at Lulu


Assemblage by the sea. Crusted, coralized. Colors approaching, but never quite, seafoam. More a bleached shellfish reference. Sort kelp-y. My Octopus Teacher or Kevin Costner in Waterwold-core? This is the ambiguity in question. Or, maybe more associated with the crustables: Miho Dohi, Daniel Rios Rodriguez, Lin May Saeed. ... wait, is this Lulu-core?

Wednesday, June 2, 2021

Past: Josephine Pryde

"...People didn’t enjoy Lichtenstein they enjoyed comics, and within its soothing fantasy. Pryde uses Pop's function, the saccharine of instant recognition ... whose comfort allow defenses dropped and desire for disposable sweets, a populist bent to criticality ... a shutterstock imaging of normalized categories....  Pryde delivers within the pre-existent of Trojan genres..."

"Genre being the capsule that allows immediate swallowing: "They're about touch." What Isabelle Graw called "straightforwardly thematic." And so we understand them like a trojan horse, internalize with ease. Ostensibly later spring forths the latent soldiers, medicine. But it might be the gulping was the trick. Getting you to immediately get them. The cuteness of gerbils, the joke of consumption."

Tuesday, June 1, 2021

Philipp Timischl at LAYR Coburgbastei, Vienna


Blinky light art, the rearranged parts of the cultural casino, cut from and placed into its altars, deranged artifacts. The PR says as much: "ratifies a pop modernism celebrating the a priori unnatural marriage between the culture of entertainment and that, sacerdotal, of modernism. Our Clement Greenberg in TMZ sauce, restages the epic formalist quest for flatness, infused with pop calibrated for iPhones."
The culturally accredited mall.

Past: Philipp Timischl at Neue Alte Brücke

"Timishcl's sculpturification of photography is on one hand full of cheeky little moments of puncture - the objectification, fetish, and bejeweling of hyper-beefed men who unwittingly take part - as well as the need to sediment the more transitory elements of photo and video in an object original.  ... About the level of risk involved and who bears it in what situations. ... our carefree objectification."

full: Philipp Timischl at Neue Alte Brücke

Monday, May 31, 2021

Anthony Olubunmi Akinbola at Night Gallery


A title that's compelling because it's honest - materiality, brought to Market, amass enough becomes quality, an aesthetic, of the marketplace. Hoist a table, your wares into space, for sale. Like we ever needed more. Expressionism's paint on a fine tablecloth, now durags. Mike Kelley's chintz glued critique to its cloth, but that was just what we liked then.

Sunday, May 30, 2021

Organic Music Societies: Don and Moki Cherry at Blank Forms


This is a crazy repository. Documentation that goes all the way down. In CAD's spectrum choice of editorial or vault, this is firmly in the vault territory - the whole catalog - more than your morning coffee can handle. This is not an exhibition but an archive. Which is good for the world, bad for dear CAWD reader.  This after all CAWD's endless whinging over exhibitions with 6 promotional stills. Now CAWD given the whole pack to smoke. Eat it and like it dweeb. Maybe this is way to get CAWD to shut up - sing its music of universal silence. Maybe this is pesticide to memetic insta-friendly aesthetics. But maybe excess might only eventually breed new editors, new mastheads to sort the mass, fear. 

Saturday, May 29, 2021

Past: Wolfgang Tillmans

"The promise of Tillmans' photographs is that maybe we too are 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 recognized. Tillmans' eye fills with the promise of this possibility, of someone loving you no matter how banal, 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 advertorial promise of finally of someone finally seeing you because your butt finally looks good packaged by the right hand and someone will love you."

"Tillmans the great tenderizer"

"an offhand nicety whose cheapness and disposability Tillmans weights against all the other offhand 'cheap' snapshots of humans about their lives. Placing stake that you cannot dispose the saccharine abstraction without throwing out the people, humans. "If one thing matters, everything matters." And so they are like sunsets, both the near endless regurgitations of saccharine accident, cliche. Incidental returns of arbitrary conditions, completely unique and, like people, endlessly the same. A triple-point of beauty, arbitrariness, meaning. And perhaps meaning, our affection for the blushes, only appears as ward against inversion: If even one doesn't matter, nothing matters. Our fear."

Click for full:Wolfgang Tillmans at Galerie BuchholzWolfgang Tillmans at Daniel BuchholzWolfgang Tillmans at David ZwirnerWolfgang Tillmans at Maureen Paley

Friday, May 28, 2021

Katharina Grosse at Galerie nächst St. Stephan Rosemarie Schwarzwälder


Grosse is the most French painter alive. Which is impressive for a German. Deftly avoiding the historical German anxiety* to instead shoot acid rainbows, prep rooms to catch clowns exploding. The French taste for acrid color. Us all happy Bernard Frize hadn't thought of it. The mess was qualified by its scale, which felt like reason. Because it's hard to package both scale and mess. And this was its critical quality, "site specific" and unconsumable as anything but painting, no support for its sale, just paint, everywhere. Painting dirt was probably the crescendo of this. But now an attempt to package the ether, like Yves Klein's sponges, a structure to sop the aerosol, give perfume both air and object, like a misread jewel. 

*Though admittedly Richter too wiped the burden to freedom.

Thursday, May 27, 2021

Deborah Remington at Bortolami


A sci-fi abstract expressionism, an alternate universe. Not the thing one sees but a lush aluminum foil, accumulate reference like car accidents, tin that bleeds. Adamantium ribcages and space horizons. They are what J.G. Ballard was to modernism, an excess to an austerity, probably impossible not to read its wet heat as critique of then's plain steel composition. Which now we like. 

Contemporary Art Library

Is this the softening? Black becomes a hex #444444, white becomes #ebebeb. Anti-ligature Rooms: "It was a morphologic change stemming from and signalling the temperament changes within. Domesticated foxes developed spotting, resembled marbled dogs." Our bodies a surface display, openly communicating friendliness. Art - even 4 years ago - looked stark, the lighting for an autopsy, the art cold, and all displayed in the pristine white of online vitrines. Now, on the the anniversary of our nth reckoning, we're all trying to be better people, be nicer to each other, deburr the edges. Now galleries are turning to grey, getting the exposure levels correct:, a softening of the pornographic presentation with finer underlying bedsheets, a linen photography. This is the trend. A softening. You see it shown smiling in the new friendly paintings. A morphological change.

This was always an "educational" mission. And "Library" attempts a solution to the BC/AD split - After Daily and the dawning of image, outshines the much less illuminated past. Its solution: bring everything into its light. A monopolization that is less a power grab than the creation of the ark: megalomanic if it wasn't so necessary. Monoliths at least provide a common enemy. 

We stand corrected that this is not just CAD in a new skin. That over half the projects are not CAD. We got this wrong. But still standing proof of the occlusion of the past, because the growth rate is in 2000s, that the 90s didn't take place. This isn't CAD's fault, this is just the before/after split. But it is possible the Gulf War didn't happen. CAD is the network, not the warmonger, in this metaphor. A wish for a button that would make 1991 reappear, maybe close to inventing it. 

Correction: As noted above in the text above, CAD issued several corrections to our original text. We incorrectly stated that nearly all the exhibitions appeared from Daily. And though we did not mean to imply otherwise, its mission has always been educational. Our attempts at a hex probably remain wrong.

Wednesday, May 26, 2021

Isabelle Cornaro at Galerie Francesca Pia


A grey that matches. Our new walls. The borders of virtual and real become porous, making the object float in virtual space, in their new home. You would almost think it wasn't coincidence. A gradientless lighting, the artist's overt concern with silvered surface. 

Monday, May 24, 2021

 Past: Jannis Marwitz at Lucas Hirsch

"Which is why Tarot cards are such powerful meaning creation devices - humans are apophenic machines - seeing sense where there may be none, they create it for themselves. Art comes to resemble it."

full: Jannis Marwitz at Lucas Hirsch

Friday, May 21, 2021

Ghislaine Leung at Cabinet


0465773005 is the title of this show, a glowing sign within the show, as well as an H&M "cashmere blend" sweater that is only 10% cashmere. This could be a coincidence (though the number itself sorta relays its odds) but Leung's sort of abide it, the gradual creep of its suspicion, the John Knight cold cut ominousness in staging. Why must the light be blackout? Why the floor silenced? Why does the carriage require staves? The creep builds suspicion: a house haunted under glistening sterile light. A crime scene scrubbed, we, detectives.

see too: Ghislaine Leung at Chisenhale & Essex StreetGhislaine Leung at Künstleraus Stuttgart

Past: Ghislaine Leung

"...increasing modern "miracle" conveniences and the then latest "smart objects" is hard not to read as a fear of these conveniences, submissiveness, actually infiltrating us, until we became, if not kitchen appliances ourselves, at least frighteningly subservient molded to kitchen surrounding us. The fear of our kitchen as a mold. Such that options for expression become limited by the cultural detritus available in stores.  You join in union, with a multitude, a choir, signing "THE BOSS." Whether or not highlighting these cultural walls with a gloss is helpful, it does make for good scary. "

Read full: Ghislaine Leung at Chisenhale & Essex StreetGhislaine Leung at Künstleraus Stuttgart

Thursday, May 20, 2021

Daiga Grantina at Emalin & Paul Lee at Adams and Ollman

(Emalin, AdamsOllman)

Are we getting theme days now? Yesterday's painterly auto-satisfaction and today is fishnetted TuttleWurtz? Which ostensibly allows experimental comparison: constants can be ignored, the variables leading to data - we determine difference. For the sorting of garbage. Like, while Hesse's materiality was more organizations systems to flaunt it, Benglis's excessed itself to monuments, less organized than amassed (what Donovan would later make spectacle). Chamberlain versus Spero. Tuttle's accumulation was painterly, made formal, pretty for the pageants. And Wurtz... Wurtz more just the treating the refuse with a dignity - combing the child's hair for picture day. And Miho Dohi's fungi amongst. And here we have two somewhere in the field, picking up the remains, assembling a late assemblage. There's a joke in here about recycling, or upcycling, or maybe just "reduce, reuse, recycle" it'll always be a different product.

See too: Paul LeeB. Wurtz
Past: Paul Lee

"'These tambourines will not be touched'... like all handmade art eventually hung on walls, only ever now touched through gloves or sight, it is a sort of sad existence after all the grunting love of the painter stretching the canvas, rubbing it with oils, or whatever. Somebody cared once, paintings like ashtrays of that touch."

"Lee all about towel's touch."

Read full: Paul Lee at David SheltonPaul Lee at MaccaronePaul Lee at Karma

Wednesday, May 19, 2021

Michiel Ceulers at Island


Painting is a pornography and painters are the perverts, the press release says as much. Allow the painter to geek out and realize the depths of their depravity. Artists must choose how much exposure allowed. The painting's "inter-referential dynamics" could refer to masturbation or incest, it depends on the point of view. (Painterly masturbation is always incest?) And while, generally, paintings meta-game has become tiresome, it's more honest than most admitting to the game as an erotic self-pleasure. Denial, shame, release - this is the boardgames of the painter.

Tuesday, May 18, 2021

Noel W. Anderson at JDJ


Because we need to turn images into tombstones. And the press release is the meaning giving prayer. And abstraction as a verb, an artistic technology for memorial. Processed pain. 

past: Noel W. Anderson at JDJ

Monday, May 17, 2021

Past: Paul Mpagi Sepuya

"It's why so many photographers are want to document the youth, its the embodiment of the photograph's eternal nubility as we all die...

"The bodies work for the camera who is the master to be satiated. Which explains their machine-like affection. It's a more Hans-Breder-like photographic attitude, any sympathetic Tillmans-esque is fractured, the body formalized, turned to abstraction, which is a gore, a machine of equivocation, skin becomes fingerprinted glass becomes magazine flesh cut and pasted.  This is ostensibly fun but play and its dalliance gets close to frivolousness, becomes dangerous when you are machine shredding bodies"

Read Full: Paul Mpagi Sepuya at DocumentPaul Mpagi Sepuya at Modern Art hosting Team Gallery

Thursday, May 13, 2021

Sanya Kantarovsky, Camille Blatrix at Modern Art


Artists engaging in traditional crafts, marquetry and woodblock. But tradition was wiped out by the invention of capitalist plastic. Labor was reduced to work, and craft became manufacturing processes, became laser cut wood, CNC milled blocks, a thousand interns on call. Suddenly your dreams could be injection molded. Ostensibly. And these are two artists who's importance is the plasticity of style - the sort of whatever possibility of plastic goos, bent for artistic purposing. New images in old habits. So it's odd then to have a press release calling the whole thing into question, a excerpt from a 1906 book of traditional wood crafts lamenting novelty:

"If there is one quality which more than another marks the demand of the present day it is the requirement of novelty. ...the question is not, 'Is this fresh thing good? Is it well-fitted for its intended uses?' but 'Is it novel?' ... dispens[ing] with tradition, and ... set forth with childlike naïveté. Careful study of these experiments discloses the fact that .... the undigested use of natural motifs results not in nourishment but in nightmare"

This would all depend on whether we believe this art to be "undigested designs indifferently executed which have little but a fancied novelty to recommend them.” Not a "...a saner view of what constitutes originality by setting before them something of the experience of past times, when craft tradition was still living and the designer had a closer contact with the material in which his design was carried out than is usual at present." Surely this is not today. But there's something I'm not willing to throw away with the show. Somehow its uselessness seems the point, an abuse of interest. 

see too: Sanya Kantarovsky at Marc FoxxCamille Blatrix at Wattis

Wednesday, May 12, 2021

Liz Larner at Regen Projects


"Painted trash" sounds like an insult, but it's what we have here. A decorate filth. Framing the more expensive. Does this imbue them a criticality they would lack otherwise? Connecting them to issues at hand? Or a self-inflicted wound, pointing out that the jewels too are just mud with a glaze. Eventually the plastic disintegrates, washes away, and inside the lumps remain. 

Tuesday, May 11, 2021

Past: Yui Yaegashi at Parrasch Heijnen

"...faceted like jewels, cut, edged, given intricacy and surface, with the strokes etching them. Their efficiency and craft promises, if not to organize your home, to organize your thoughts. Like Muji, or IKEA prior, objects which through their own clever construction promise their efficiency, its perfection, an aura like spell to cast it, to your home, something so cute you just want to grab it..."

Monday, May 10, 2021

Frank Walter at David Zwirner


"the artist Frank Walter who died eight years ago. He lived in extreme poverty, was the child of a slave owner and a slave, a fragmented identity. He travelled extensively in Europe during the fifties and sixties, where he experienced extreme racism. Afterwards he lived in the Antiguan countryside, intensely interested in questions of ecology and agriculture. He was a pioneer. And he painted over 5,000 paintings! An unbelievable body of work, which has not been seen so far. He also wrote poems, worked in nearly all art disciplines. He was the Leonardo da Vinci of Antigua. " –Hans-Ulrich Obrist"

I wish we could stop picking up the bones and proclaiming vitality, picked from the wreckage, like an archaeological dig waiting on the culture to fall - waiting for hardship to patina into aura. Starts to feel like a celebration of pain. The skeletons are worth more to the natural history museum. "Dominant culture lays the concrete of its social conditions, proclaims "look a dandelion has grown," hangs its photo in our halls as testament to humanity. But it can seem like a testament to the concrete. A mythos of suffering starts to feel like instructions for it."

See too: Alvin Baltrop at Hannah Hoffman

Past: Orion Martin at Bodega

"the roughly two inches of depth that Martin allows as pans for the sifting of images, cultural gold, and perhaps owing to Beckman's claustro-orgies, updating that era's expressionism is for this one's iPhone sheen, both's cultural unconscious brought up and pressed against the glass for our peering zoological efforts. ... the images we have internally seared into us, cultural echoes rattling around inside your head's quiet moments occasionally materializing from the noise of your brain a jingle from 30 years ago."

Read full: Orion Martin at Bodega

Friday, May 7, 2021

Past: Jos De Gruyter and Harald Thys

"Against Venetian statuary, against marble gods with triforks, JdGHT's is wantonly provincial, the unsophisticate, the stupid it is: turns out, despite centuries of looking up at them, we don't actually resemble Greek Gods. "

"Painful, developmentally delayed style, filled with speech impediments, slow progress, and language drifting into nonsense, is, like von Trier's early film, an idiocy against social decorum, our socially vulnerable conversations, socially conscious films, replayed by the slow and impaired"

"They're funny, but they don't feel good to laugh at, no matter how stupid they are, they still reflect us. The doofus in film is guaranteed redemption by the contrivances of plot and will win out in the end. These characters get none."

Read full:
(Jos De Gruyter and Harald Thys)
Venice 2019, Belgium Jos de Gruyter & Harald Thys Mondo CaneJos de Gruyter and Harald Thys at Kunsthal AarhusJos De Gruyter and Harald Thys at Gavin BrownJos de Gruyter and Harald Thys at WattisJos De Gruyter and Harald Thys at MoMA PS1