Friday, April 26, 2024

Gene Beery at Derosia


An "elemental usefulness" to signage.  We evolved to interpret signs, and there should be mutual respect in harnessing our primeval wiring. This is what the advert does. To speak to someone is an intimate thing. To have their ear. To be inside their head, my words. We should treat it delicately, erotically that it is. We were made to interpret this. To interface. The painter controls volume that poet does not. Treat it with respect, a mutual suspicion. Beery and I invent a third thing together through the handshake of the poem. Not a cruelty of font size.

Thursday, April 25, 2024

Daniel Dewar & Grégory Gicquel at Antenna Space


Can't help but think of the memento mori of Fischli and Weiss hand-carving trash. It was about "abusing time," the waste of labor, the clock. Here labor is venerated, monuments slow carved to it. Seating whittled with a snails pace. Again, the trend for stitching. Knitting that is engraved, like, do you get it? The look of craft, of labor, of farming. Concepts so alienated to us that they return as aura, as art. Nostalgia for a time that never existed. Now labor is a fun haycation. A thing for people who don't do it to experience as a novel other. 

" was a concealment: the aluminum clamshell of your laptop being seen as economic product of capital innovation itself, rather than the hand-sweat of laborers distanced beneath gloves. A price tag for a face. Almost nothing is this world is actually automated - everything you touch is hand-made by workers. This separation of our social relations we've so completely assimilated that labor itself returns as a literal fetishism, stitches mark this labor, look compelling, can be brought out onto white walls, as aura, as artwork. Every cheap objects is an equal tapestry. The stitches in time are smoother, hidden. Hold up your child's plastic toy and feel another at its end..."

See too: Stitching LaborDaniel Dewar and Grégory Gicquel at Portikus, Daniel Dewar and Grégory Gicquel at Micheline SzwajcerPeter Fischli and David Weiss at Sprüth Magers

Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Nora Turato at Sprüth Magers


Scream! Yell! Weeee! Bang, bang, bang the pots of language! Feel the emptiness. Feel hollow in indiscriminate wailing. A child in a grocery store deprived, is, yes, this is the sound of our world, adverts, attention, corporation. You have described our terror, armed the artist with these weapons of mass language... now what? This is the point where I turn, I'm not interested in being made numb anymore, in this classic form of desensitization. It was fun for a little while. Now it just gets bigger? The arms race was already won, we have demilitarization programs in place. The artist need not a bigger billboard to prove large emptiness. 

See too: Desensitization, Modern GothicNora Turato

Past: Nora Turato

What Nauman did for neon, Turato does for motivational posters, bus adverts. The contemporary illuminate manuscript to nonsensical ... sadness? - that empty pang after finding yourself having read the billboard before even knowing you were reading the billboard. Your brain wants to "make sense" of its surroundings, and you read it for clues, end up reading the billboard that has commandeered your evolutionary wiring to sell you a half naked woman in socks. It's not your fault you read it, not your fault it barely makes sense. You were not intended for spaces like these. Nothing is rational in art or advertising, for both there is only that same distending space that creates a void, a meaning that must be filled, consumerist or otherwise. 

...language, propelled with advertorial oomph, instead deadpans with its empty cymbal crash; understand the words but, devoid of context feel a little haunted, disembodied, ghosts of something far."

....Language adrift from meaning. There's always more meaning. Like crap to chewed gum. Our pink lump that attracts the dirt, any interpretable speck of concrete information. Something will stick to it. And hold it for contemplation... Both advertising and poetry leverage our interpretable bits to their advantage, opening us like a can - I'm not sure if we are meant to enjoy these or feel once again dispirited by their abuse of our good nature - our tender top, berated."

".. The garbage of the 'infosphere.' ...politicians having clipped the sound bite down to two word phrases, the fun of creating your own haunting version, headlines like haikus, is fun. Cut the ends off a sentence and be left with a poem."

Monday, April 22, 2024

Christine Tien Wang & Ken Lum at Galerie Nagel Draxler


At root both artist's text/image relation is a vibe ambivalent, cynical(?) The reproduced memes, the ironic signage. The story in the PR is telling. A European artist at dinner casts designation: "oriental." Surely one can understand an apathy with words, surely empathize a distrust to identification, "organization."  In relation to words a vibe that might be described of white knuckling, teeth gritted, smiling, polite laughter. The detachment in relation to words might be one of self survival. Of cool rage. We ask for violence to be turned to comedy to make it palatable. For trauma turned to NPR bites, the "asian" section of grocery store. For both its served cold and you get to turn it over on your palate and question whether learning to like it makes you a better liberal. It is fun for the chef. I like it. 

Sunday, April 21, 2024

John Riepenhoff at Broadway


Yesteryear's zombie movie pulled a punch: all this boring abstraction was actually a process! of [x]! Cue the conceptual gong. Riepenhoff extended the thought, "what if all that process orientation went toward making paintings that looked marketable, looked like the candied past. That looked like so many things your rapid fire reference uzi couldn't debrain the hordes. They have fast zombies now. This was akin to interest. It was always how zombies win, a press release to explain it.

Art has become a giant machine mining sources of abstraction.

Friday, April 19, 2024

Claude Rutault at Federico Vavassori


"two canvasses mounted on stretchers, of identical size and shape, painted the same colour as the wall on which they hang,"

Rutault, as if painting were some side project of interior design. An object springing from walls, architecture's mushroom. Whether or not this is true, the thought is better. You don't have to think about Painting, instead you get to think of air. You get to think of a painting that serves something else. It is pleasant to watch painting be useless like this. 

Thursday, April 18, 2024

Raphaela Simon at Oldenburger Kunstverein


Like that adolescent obsession with Tim Burton, the dripping red and wimpy skeletons, there's interest in so clearly -earnestly- wearing your heart on the sleeve. What could it mean, doodling myself in cage? Only a Freudian could answer to such riddles. Mystery is beside the point to the teen whose angst seeks symbol, to the painter who parades it. Being blatant is its own pathos. Directness. Guston's bowl of cherries, or Cahn's color indicating pain. It's hard to be mean to someone handing you their painfully naive heart. These are stop signs for it. 

Wednesday, April 17, 2024


Surface so much surface. Skim coat it. Plating like gold the content. Thin but meaningful? This is the paradox of art's closing the door and everyone knowing it is still, sigh, just another window. The closed door already contains the content of the world. Eventually you come to love doors being closed. Appreciate candy for its wrapper. Only the shallow don't judge by appearance. In the stage of art, it doesn't matter if actor's jewelry is costume. It's all real surface. That's interesting. 

Thursday, April 11, 2024

Sibylle Ruppert at Project Native Informant


We've run out of Giger works to flip so we dig a little further into the basement. A better basement perhaps. Less interested in the surface displays of a HD leathery seduction - than the intermittent potions of past styles, the Ernst, the Moreau, her Giger friend, into some flavor more disgusting than its parts. Hans Bellmer with better graphics, a better refresh rate. Giger had the the good luck to have his monster trophy become icon. These are more acid to dissolve the past into a possible formula. The formula is what most are searching for today. But these have more fun than running the endless permutations, seem devious in the idea. And a ray tracing way ahead of its time. 

Wednesday, April 10, 2024

 Past: Christopher Williams 

"But [Williams'] en abyme of institutional/self reflection requires discerning 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. "

"Williams' institutional mirroring... also simply multiplies and reiterates its institutional halos."

All: Christopher Williams 

Tuesday, April 9, 2024

Ruth Laskey at Altman Siegel


A stitch denotes time, expenditure, so labor becomes a sweat condensing on its image, commitment to the geometric bit. You burn time to consecrate your image. Engrave it in the stone of labor. Lend time to meaning, to proof its beauty. 

"This separation of our social relations we've so completely assimilated that labor itself returns as fetishism, stitches mark this labor, look compelling, can be brought out onto white walls, as aura, as artwork. Labor itself becomes auratic, the look of it. Simulacra. Because every cheap objects is an equal tapestry. The stitches in time are smoother, hidden. Hold up your child's plastic toy and feel another at its end." - Read full: Notes on Stitches

Monday, April 8, 2024

Amelie von Wulffen at Barbara Weiss

The mud monster is real, is painting, boogeyman of the artworld, hiding on everyone's mind - it is the imago haunting art. "Painting is filled with horror, the calls coming from inside the house." Von Wulffen is drawing in the mud our repressed object. The diamond of painting remains in the rough. The best painters today, Euler, Eisenman, Churchman, von Wulffen, are cartoonists are heart. They are not in service to the church of painting. It's means to draw the world. In our mud of mirage. Painting is a stupid ghost to be haunted by, facet diamonds of. 

See too: Nicole Eisenman at Astrup Fearnley MuseetAll Amelie von Wulffen

Thursday, April 4, 2024

Lena Henke at Aspen Art Museum


Henke's usual proliferation of meaning is here made through the ventricles of framing, drawing a silhouette to alter the view. This isn't a turd morphing question of what the sculptor ate, (the diet exhaustively listed in the PR.) Rather it's framing. Even if it is relic stolen from cultural vegetable farm.

Past: Lena Henke -"Ambiguousness as a means for the simultaneity of surrealism. A tree sort of looks like a horse so we can put them together; a cloud can look like anything, much like a turd, some will see interest."

Wednesday, April 3, 2024

Ross Simonini at François Ghebaly


Painting's seminal rag congeals life, sentience, a progeny looking up at you pleading with neoteny, with those large watery eyes beg like babies swaddled for identification, for your care. A baby is a blackmail - you are its hostage: you wouldn't let anything this cute die. You wouldn't talk shit about art so helplessly adorbz, so needful. Would you? 
"Konrad Lorenz argued in 1949 that [cuteness] triggered nurturing responses in adults and that this was an evolutionary adaptation which helped ensure that adults cared for their children, ultimately securing the survival of the species. Some later scientific studies have provided further evidence for Lorenz's theory." 
So give your painting eyes, a face, a rattle, a googoo gaga. Oh look it's talking, the press release translates. Bring this artistic reproduction home with you today.

See too: Jon Pylypchuk at Petzel, Calvin Marcus at Clearing, "the scatalogic nappies of adult-child-brutes"

Tuesday, April 2, 2024

Valie Export at MAK Center for Art and Architecture


So much art demands the flesh obey, the body must be compositonalized. Picasso rearranges women into angles and we declare modernity. Higher powers command women El Greco, and several generations etiolate into pale heroin chic. You serve a higher purpose: conforming to beauty. There's a healthy dose of skepticism in the air, that the demands of art may serve no other purpose than watching people conform. 

 Past: Bernhard Schobinger at Martina Simeti

... when so many artists are working to backfill their materials with "content" the press release elucidates as ingredient lists, it's become an unironic Pearoefoam so prevalent. ....

Full: Bernhard Schobinger at Martina Simeti

Reina Sugihara at Arcadia Missa

Ode to the oyster. To the folds and frill. To innuendo, guessing. To the suggestive aphrodisiacs. The thing we all see but can't say. The unmentionable. Us all slurping at what's underneath table. That what you see is not what you see. A toast to the suggestibility of the viewer, who holds this oyster in head. Whose head is an oyster, making sense of oysters. Painting isn't a wall, it's a suggestion, interpretability. Inkblots and oysters, they spill the shape of meaning inside your head.