London

(detail) at Transition Gallery

The premise seems simple: A painter’s painter curates an exhibition comprising one work each from 118 painters. The breadth of the offering covers the full gamut of the medium and, as a result, creates a beautiful crisis for the genre of painting—and that’s because there isn’t a lick of paint in the most painterly concerned of painting shows.

(detail), 2014; installation view, Transiton Gallery, London. Courtesy of Andrew Bracey and Transiton Gallery. Photo: Andrew Bracey

(detail), 2014; installation view, Transition Gallery, London. Courtesy of Andrew Bracey and Transiton Gallery. Photo: Andrew Bracey

For (detail), artist–curator Andrew Bracey asked each of the artists to contribute a detail of one of their works, to be enlarged and exhibited in a montage of photographic detail. The show could be seen as a virtual offering that feels familiar, in which images occur one after the other with a curatorial rhythm. Visually, it’s perfectly realized—the images play off of each other without any one image dominating, because to emphasize individual moments that pop or come together would work against what’s actually being presented. The irony of this situation is that it’s exactly the kind of show that has been painfully needed for a long time, but now that it’s arrived, it’s hard to know what to do with it.

For Transition Gallery, the show presents a modernist exhibition with each of the works offered as a 68.5-centimeter (27-inch) square, scaled to neatly fit the white-cube gallery.[1] Usually, a detail will offer insight or a clearer understanding of its subject. This show offers no such aid. By design, the individual pieces cannot provide any real insight into their respective source work, as they are detached from the very subject they purport to examine. This is strictly detail about detail. Conceptually, it pushes well beyond Peter Halley’s argument of a thing being so hyper-modern that it becomes postmodern. One is left to wonder: Is this a meta-painting show—a show so much about painting that it no longer can be about painting?

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New Orleans

AnnieLaurie Erickson: Data Shadows at Carroll Gallery

Photographer AnnieLaurie Erickson has spent a lot of time lately being watched by law enforcement. In her recent trip this year to Oklahoma, she stood on public property, taking photographs while security guards, local officers, and state police looked on. One might ask, what has she been photographing that requires so much surveillance? The answer is: big data centers throughout the Southern United States, the subject of her smart exhibition Data Shadows at Tulane University’s Carroll Gallery. Erickson’s fourteen photos and one interactive installation explore what happens to the everyday internet data we create.

Google Data Center, Surveillance Cameras, Mayes County, OK, 2014; Archival pigment print;  40 in. x 56 in. Courtesy of AnnieLaurie Erickson and Tulane University. Photo: AnnieLaurie Erickson.

AnnieLaurie Erickson. Google Data Center, Surveillance Cameras, Mayes County, OK, 2014; archival pigment print; 40 x 56 in. Courtesy of AnnieLaurie Erickson and Tulane University. Photo: AnnieLaurie Erickson.

Only last year, Edward Snowden revealed that the NSA has been monitoring communications including email, videos, photos, voice-over-IP chats (such as Skype), file transfers, and social-networking information. While the Arab Spring exemplified how social media could diffuse power, Snowden demonstrated that collecting huge swaths of data permits the government to monitor—and potentially control—social movements. Erickson’s photographs reveal the sites where that information is stored. Pigment print Google Data Center, Surveillance Cameras, Mayes County, OK (2014) depicts a massive white complex behind a chain-link fence. One lone light shines high above the industrial buildings. Throughout Erickson’s Data Center series, fences interrupt the onlooker’s view, a reminder that the majority of us are outside the periphery of control over our information.

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From the Archives

From the Archives – Help Desk: Padding the Resume

Today from our archives we bring you a Help Desk column that never goes out of style. To submit your question anonymously, follow this link. All submissions become the property of Daily Serving. 

Artists are routinely asked to donate work toward the benefit of an organization. I have reached the point where I am just not sure how my participation ranks along with my overall exhibition history. Also, benefit shows vary greatly in scope and prestige. With some, artists are carefully selected, and others—well, we simply add to the giant pot in order to be able to help out in what little way we can. So what (if any) is a suitable way to list auctions, charitable donations, or benefit shows on one’s CV? Do they go in the “Select Group Exhibitions” category? Do they need an asterisk of some kind? Do they get their own section? Or do they stay out altogether? Furthermore, when panels or curators view résumés, do they view these things as positive qualities or simply as résumé padding?

The short answer is that there is not only one answer. There’s a bit of confusion about CVs and résumés, since the two terms are often interchangeably used. However, you might want to think about your CV as an all-encompassing master document that lists every show, residency, award—and yes, charity auction—that you’ve ever participated in. After all, CV is short for curriculum vitae, or “the course of one’s life,” and it’s a good idea to keep such a document for your future biographers so that they get the facts straight when they’re writing about your early years.

Oscar Tuazon. Sensory Spaces, 2013; installation view, Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, Rotterdam. Courtesy of Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen. Photo: Studio Hans Wilschut.

Oscar Tuazon. Sensory Spaces, 2013; installation view, Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, Rotterdam. Courtesy of Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen. Photo: Studio Hans Wilschut.

Your résumé, on the other hand, is a document that usually has a prescribed length (“no more than two pages”) and should be tailored to the position for which you are applying. I checked in with Bert Green of Bert Green Fine Art in Chicago, and he also expressed this opinion:

“An artist’s exhibition résumé is intended to give as complete a picture as possible of how widely and well the artist’s work is exhibited and to demonstrate an involvement in and commitment to the art world. Some artists maintain two exhibition résumés, a comprehensive version with every single exhibition they have ever participated in and a shorter version that is used publicly, to save space and emphasize quality. Generally the comprehensive version is not shared, but it is a good idea to maintain one as a document for posterity.”

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Shotgun Reviews

Issei Suda: Life in Flower 1971–1977 at Miyako Yoshinaga

Shotgun Reviews are an open forum where we invite the international art community to contribute timely, short-format responses to an exhibition or event. If you are interested in submitting a Shotgun Review, please click this link for more information. In this Shotgun Review, Bansie Vasvani reviews Issei Suda: Life in Flower 1971–1977 at Miyako Yoshinaga in New York City.

Oume 1977

Issei Suda. Oume, 1977, 1977; gelatin silver print; 8.8 x 8.8 in. Courtesy of the Artist and Miyako Yoshinaga Gallery, New York.

Using a medium-format camera, Issei Suda’s square-shaped black-and-white portraits capture the liminal moments between posed and candid situations to elevate otherwise mundane moments of daily life in 1970s Tokyo. The exhibition Issei Suda: Life in Flower 1971–1977 at the Miyako Yoshinaga Gallery, New York, includes stylized images from two series: Fushi Kaden (“The Flowering Spirit,” 1978) and Waga Tokyo 100 (“My Tokyo 100,” 1979). More than thirty years since each series was taken, Suda’s photographs produce a sense of nostalgia, and are a reminder of Japan’s rapidly changing cultural landscape.

In Oume, 1977 (1977) and Yokohama Sankei-en, Umematsuri, 1977 (1977), Suda gestures toward an adoration of youth and purity conveyed by the innocence and charm of two young girls. In Oume, 1977,a girl stands beneath a cherry-blossom tree weighed down by its flowering branches. The tree forms a large, delicate white halo around her head, beatifying her presence. Meanwhile, the photograph Yokohama Sankei-en, Umematsuri, February 13, 1977 (1977) depicts an unsuspecting child with large, bow-shaped white ribbons in her hair and a black-and-white, polka-dotted kimono. Caught mid-blink, the child remains in a perpetual state of girlhood within the photograph. The emotional tonality and profundity of Suda’s work emerges from the very indeterminacy between the attentive and unmindful.

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San Francisco

Cynthia Ona Innis: Shift at Traywick Contemporary

Our partners at Art Practical are celebrating their sixth annual Shotgun! issue, so today we bring you Maria Porges’ review of Cynthia Ona Innis: Shift at Traywick Contemporary in Berkeley, California. This article was originally published on September 25, 2014.

Cynthia Ona Innis.
 Shift, 2014; acrylic and satin on canvas; 
45 x 50 in. Courtesy of the Artist and Traywick Contemporary, Berkeley.

Cynthia Ona Innis.
 Shift, 2014; acrylic and satin on canvas; 
45 x 50 in. Courtesy of the Artist and Traywick Contemporary.

Rather than being representations of place, Cynthia Ona Innis’ paintings are evocations of the experience of landscape. Innis favors locations where change is visible and constant—like Iceland, where she visited a year ago; the fault-ridden ground of the Bay Area; or the dramatic scenery of the Eastern Sierras: Mono Lake, desert playa, and high mountain peaks.

In the paintings and works on paper included in her exhibition Shift at Traywick Contemporary, cascades of fluid, transparent color invoke geysers and waterfalls. They also suggest the effects of light, ranging from dense fog to blinding reflections on water, or the striation of sandstone in shades of warm tan and brown. But these biomorphic blots and splashes are rarely left to simply pour down the surface of Innis’ paintings. A variety of fabrics that include satin, silk, and velvet are first stained and then cut into strips. Innis manipulates them horizontally, arranging them on wood panels, canvas, or paper. A final layer of varnish fixes the collaged materials in place, though their raised edges remain visible.

Read the full article here.

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San Francisco

Carving Through Borders at Galería de la Raza

Congratulations to our partners at Art Practical on their sixth annual issue of Shotgun Reviews! Today’s review is from Matthew Harrison Tedford, who offers an assessment of the exhibition at Galería de la Raza in San Francisco: “At a time when the U.S. political system is failing to address immigration and when millions of American families risk being uprooted, Carving Through Borders offered a much-needed platform for conversation.” This article was originally published on September 25, 2014.

Oree Originol. Untitled, 2014; wood, ink, and paper; 7 x 3 ft. Courtesy of the Artist and Galería de la Raza, San Francisco.

Oree Originol. Untitled, 2014; wood, ink, and paper; 7 x 3 ft. Courtesy of the Artist and Galería de la Raza, San Francisco.

The thirteen large-scale woodblock prints that were on display in Carving Through Borders at Galería de la Raza illustrate the varied and sometimes conflicting emotions associated with immigration, from defiance to protest to hope. Carving Through Borders is a product of a long history of political printmaking, but these works render the political especially personal, making their messages even more resonant.

The commanding size of these prints combined with the intimate, stirring texts that accompany the imagery make an emotional impression on the viewer. A piece by DJ Agana at the gallery entrance greeted visitors with a Lady Liberty–like figure in a flowing quetzal feather headdress and bearing an ear of corn in place of a torch. The words “move freely” are emblazoned at the base of the print, a more direct and defiant summation of Emma Lazarus’s poem at the base of the Statue of Liberty. This rendering reminds the viewer that Lazarus’s words have been hollowed out—it is now considered utopian for a nation to embrace the tired, poor, and homeless.

Read the full article here.

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New York

Here and Elsewhere at the New Museum

Here and Elsewhere, the New Museum’s colossal survey of contemporary art from the Arab world, sets for itself an impossible task. The curatorial strategy, as stated in the exhibition’s press release, is to work “against the notion of the Arab world as a homogenous or cohesive entity.” Though able to present a range of Arab identities, regionalisms, and geographies, the sprawling installation self-organizes and familiar tropes begin to emerge. As every archetype is anchored in a truth, the images of war-torn streets, monuments to fallen dictators, dusty Bedouins in desert landscapes, and gleaming symbols of oil-soaked capitalism here are resonant and believable. Even so, the choice to include forty-five artists and collectives renders the exhibition both overwhelming and incoherent, and the huge number of works strains the already limited functionality of the museum’s signature building.

GCC installation, 2014. Courtesy New Museum, New York. Photo by Benoit Pailley.

GCC installation, 2014. Courtesy New Museum, New York. Photo by Benoit Pailley.

Rather than impose some significant through-line on the cacophony of voices that make up Here and Elsewhere, despite the curators having opted not to, I will instead focus on a few key works that offer surprising and provocative views of the contemporary Arab experience, while indicating some omissions in our understanding of who is present in the “Arab world.” From the start, the exhibition positions Arab identity as closely connected with post-colonial struggle, from Lebanon to Palestine to Egypt. On the museum’s fifth floor, Ala Younis has curated an exhibition-within-an-exhibition titled An Index of Tensional and Unintentional Love of Land, consisting of contemporary artworks and compelling excerpts from photojournalistic archives in the United States and around the Middle East. This installation provides a framework through which to view the whole of Here and Elsewhere, prefiguring the historically reflexive or even speculative approaches offered by many of the artists on the lower four floors.

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