Collage

30 Americans at the Contemporary Arts Center, New Orleans

In a nod to Linda Nochlin’s famous query, Michele Wallace asked, “Why are there no great black artists?”[1] 30 Americans is the response to this question, a beautiful, rambunctious show that gathers the work of 31 African American artists. Unfortunately, 30 Americans, similar to Thelma Golden’s Freestyle in 2001, is not about a specific curatorial theory or thought, but rather a placing of African American[.....]

Ramiro Gomez: Domestic Scenes at Charlie James Gallery

Ramiro Gomez. Woman Cleaning Shower
in Beverly Hills
(after David Hockney’s
Man Taking Shower in
Beverly Hills, 1964), 2013. 
Acrylic on canvas. 36 x
36 inches. Courtesy the artist and Charlie James Gallery, Los Angeles. Photo: Osceola Refetoff.

Ramiro Gomez’s show at Charlie James Gallery has been gaining a lot of attention for his topical use of visual politics to introduce labor and immigration issues into the art discourse. Most notably, Gomez appropriates the image of David Hockney’s iconic painting A Bigger Splash (1967) and a group of smaller Hockneys from the same period in his own paintings. The jubilant splash of Hockney’s[.....]

Julia Rometti & Victor Costales: Savage Palms, Worn Stones, Moonshine Vision at Midway Contemporary Art

Julia Rometti & Victor Costales, Ediciones del Exotismo Ordinario Internacional Neotropical (detail), ongoing from 2011, digital prints on newsprint paper (lapel revolución). Courtesy Midway Contemporary Art. Photo: Caylon Hackwith.

At Midway Contemporary Art in Minneapolis, dueling 35mm slide projectors whir and click in a darkened back room. Perched on top of two of the room’s many bookcases (this backroom also houses Midway’s impressive library), these projectors cast their images onto a shared center screen. Each slide contains a simple form on a white background: a single geological mass anchored by a heavy shadow. Overlapped[.....]

John Sparagana: Crowds & Powder at Corbett vs. Dempsey

John Sparagana. Crowds & Power: The Revolutionaries, 2013; archival inkjet prints with oil stick, sliced and mixed, on paper; 58 x 92 in. Courtesy of the artist and Corbett vs. Dempsey, Chicago. Photo: Tom Van Eynde.

John Sparagana fatigues images by manipulating them. First he scans pictures and runs off inkjet prints, then he crumples the pictures in his pocket and kneads the glossy paper for days or weeks until the sheet’s fibrous structure is loosened. The result is a soft fabric more than double in size, with its original image lightened and diminished on the new surface, appearing like a[.....]

Fan Mail: Matt Hendon

Matt Hendon. Third Pilot, 2013; mixed media; 8 x 10 inches. Courtesy of the Artist

Matt Hendon’s ongoing body of work in mixed media, Everything That Can Expire, is about challenging himself: first, to reimagine what it means to work with images instead of creating drawings or illustrations; and second, to create compositions that complicate his own and his viewers’ visual aesthetic sense. In addition to being a visual artist, Hendon works as a designer, and there are interesting and[.....]

Julie Cockburn: Slight Exposure at Yossi Milo Gallery

On entering Yossi Milo Gallery, the viewer is thrust into a bubblegum-bright world. Dull, vintage vacation snapshots and the strained smiles of a graduation portrait are transformed into photographs reminiscent of greeting cards. Through sewn-on balls and lines, and Sharpie-thick strips of thread, artist Julie Cockburn playfully graffitis each photograph. But a surreal, eerie quality belies their perky facades. Cockburn creates this effect using found photographs from[.....]

Geoffrey Farmer: A Light in the Moon at Mercer Union

One imagines that Geoffrey Farmer must go through millions of X-Acto knives a year. The Vancouver-based artist is known for his cutouts of images culled from books, magazines, and other printed material, which have been exhibited at Documenta(13) and at the Tate. In his new work Boneyard (2013), currently on view at Mercer Union, Farmer adapts his signature technique—excising  any traces of context through the[.....]