Conceptual

Paradise Lost at the Centre for Contemporary Art, Singapore

Trinh T. Minh-ha. Surname Viet Given Name Nam, 1989 (film still); 16mm; 108 min. Courtesy of Moongift Films.

“Southern Asia, in general, is the seat of awful images and associations. As the cradle of the human race, it would alone have a dim and reverential feeling connected with it… [the] mere antiquity of Asiatic things, of their institutions, histories, modes of faith, &c., is so impressive, that to me the vast age of the race and name overpowers the sense of youth in[.....]

Feeling Is Mutual at Chicago Artists Coalition

Latham Zearfoss, Court of Apology #1 (COPA #1), 2014. Plexiglas, wood, subwoofer, audio. Courtesy of Chicago Artists Coalition.

Steven L. Bridges’ catalog essay for Feeling Is Mutual at Chicago Artists Coalition invokes a quote by Marcel Duchamp as a mission statement for this exhibition of performance and relational art works. Duchamp’s quote reads, “The creative act is not performed by the artist alone; the spectator brings the work in contact with the external world by deciphering and interpreting its inner qualifications and thus adds his contribution to the[.....]

Martin Creed: What’s the Point of It? at the Hayward Gallery

In a world full of arbitrary choices, Martin Creed is an artist who uses systems to make decisions and create order. Unlike most of the YBAs, who are mainly traditionalists using unconventional materials, Creed is a true conceptualist, and his work embodies the 2.0 of contemporary British art. In the lineage of Sol LeWitt—but also radically departing from his precedent—Creed examines ideas and material, identifying[.....]

Valentina Vannicola: Dante’s Inferno

Inferno. Tolfa, Rome, Italy, April 2010 February 2011. ### Infer

In Dante’s Inferno Italian artist Valentina Vannicola merges staged photography with socially engaged practice, resulting in a rich body of work reminiscent of the postdramatic theater of Romeo Castellucci and the Societas Rafaello Sanzio. Using non-professional performers from her hometown of Tolfa, north of Rome, Vannicola has constructed absurdist scenes recreating Dante’s journey through the strata of hell. While the outcome could easily have been[.....]

Liam Gillick and Louise Lawler: November 1 – December 21 at Casey Kaplan Gallery

The simply titled exhibition November 1 – December 21, on view at Casey Kaplan Gallery in New York, pairs works by artists Liam Gillick and Louise Lawler. Sharing the space of Kaplan’s Chelsea gallery, Gillick’s cut aluminum text pieces dangle from wires attached to the ceiling while Lawler’s almost filmic photographs cling neatly to the walls. Though they occupy the same space, the works of these[.....]

Mike Kelley at MoMA PS1

Mike Kelley, now at MoMA PS1, is massive. The largest retrospective of the artist’s work to date, it is comprehensive perhaps to a fault, filling each of the exhibition space’s four floors to capacity and arguably beyond. The former school building’s multiple stairwells allow for various paths through the exhibition—a feature that is liberating if potentially disorienting—but the overall impression is one of totality; of[.....]

Radical Presence: Black Performance in Contemporary Art at NYU’s Grey Art Gallery

Jean-Ulrick Désert. Negerhosen2000 / The Travel Albums, 2003. From a series of forty digitally printed images, pigmented inks, and pencil on archival paper with mixed media collage. 11 3/4 x 8 1/4 in. Courtesy the artist.

How is Blackness performed?  Most African American contemporary artists will admit in confidence that they are often expected to perform their Blackness for the power players of the art mainstream, regardless of their choice of artistic medium. Artists working in two dimensions such as Kerry James Marshall, Kara Walker, and Wangechi Mutu have gained currency by creating work that makes the construction of black identity[.....]