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The Great Debate About Art at Upfor

Ben Buswell. ABRACADABRA (Perish Like the Word), 2015; graphite and non-photo blue; 38 x 20 inches. Courtesy of the artist and Upfor. Photo: Mario Gallucci.

“Art” is a contentious word. Endless positing over any succinct, defining properties has spawned countless op-eds, theses, and textbooks. The topic is comparable to that of discussing religion in mixed company—differences of opinion have more than once drawn blood. The Great Debate About Art, currently on view at Upfor in Portland, Oregon, is a small group exhibition contextually centered on Roy Harris’ 2010 book of[…..]

Evan Calder Williams: T-1 at Artists Space

Evan Calder Williams. T-1, 2015; performed at Artist Space on July 21, 2015.

Ice, compromised vision, and colonial geography: These formed the conceptual scaffolding that supported Evan Calder Williams’ live essay, T-1, performed at Artists Space on July 21, 2015.[1] Despite the three subjects’ ostensibly divergent histories, Calder Williams wove them into a complex web that expanded into several narratives that highlighted epiphanic and unexpected connections. The dynamic multimedia event—comprising video, text, and images projected on perpendicular screens,[…..]

HA HA! BUSINESS! at Luis De Jesus

Joseph Scalan. Meme 2002/2015; C-print, acqueous inkjet prints, pva; 40 x 30 in. Courtesy of the Artist and Luis De Jesus. Photo: Calder Yates

Novelist Don DeLillo once quipped, “California deserves whatever it gets. Californians invented the concept of lifestyle. This alone warrants their doom.” This concept is the curatorial mission behind HA HA! BUSINESS!, currently on view at Luis de Jesus, Los Angeles. HA HA! BUSINESS! reprimands what it sees as a jingoistic and self-centered lifestyle—a world filled with social-media fiends who are willing to cut down the[…..]

Entang Wiharso: Never Say No at Singapore Tyler Print Institute

Entang Wiharso. Shelter: Forest of Eyes, 2015; Aluminium sheet, laser cut, C-type print; 127 × 184 × 3 cm. Courtesy of STPI.

Set in profile, a man casts a doleful eye on a smaller figure that perches on his forehead and pulls insistently at his tongue, while a miniature chainsaw balances threateningly on his head. The palm of his hand is pierced with a plant-like dagger, and little bodies tumble out feet-first from the bottom of his torso, already bearing knives and swords in preparation for a skirmish.[…..]

William Larson: Fireflies at Gitterman Gallery

William Larson. Untitled, 1971; electro-carbon print; 11 x 8 ½ in. © William Larson. Courtesy Gitterman Gallery.

The constant stream of digital information traveling around us over wires and airways is an increasingly recognized phenomenon. Over the past two decades, many artists have begun exploring the seemingly limitless possibilities of digital communication. However, long before the integration of once-mysterious electronic media into the art world in the 1990s, William Larson used a Graphic Sciences DEX 1 Teleprinter to produce some of the[…..]

On Kawara: Silence at the Guggenheim Museum

On Kawara. DEC. 29, 1977 (Thursday, New York), 1977, from Today series, 1966–2013; acrylic on canvas; 8 x 10 in; shown with artist-made cardboard storage box, 10-1/2 x 10-3/4 x 2 in. Photo courtesy of David Zwirner, New York/London and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation.

The first retrospective since On Kawara’s death in July 2014, On Kawara—Silence at the Guggenheim Museum presents fifty years of the artist’s work. At the core of the exhibition are the daily practices that constituted Kawara’s life and art: the conceptual rituals that produced the Today, I Got Up, I Met, I Went, and I Am Still Alive series. Each series represents a different way[…..]

Gilbert & George: Utopian Pictures at Arndt Gallery

Gilbert & George. God Guides Us, 2014; 151cm × 191cm. Photo: Courtesy of Arndt gallery and the artists.

In the 21st-century lexicon of urban development, the term utopia has all but vanished from the descriptors of a contemporary city. It’s more comfortably consigned to the archaic vocabulary of 18th-century academia. Yet it remains a silent ideological underpinning of economic policies, an elusive goal that governments strive toward but leave unacknowledged—seen, for instance, in laws forbidding “transgressive” behavior, constant political entanglements, or even in perpetual urban[…..]