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Wangechi Mutu: A Fantastic Journey at Mary and Leigh Block Museum

Wangechi Mutu. Suspended Playtime, 2008/2013; Packing blankets, twine, garbage bags, and gold string; dimensions variable. Courtesy of the artist and Susanne Vielmetter Los Angeles Projects.

This year has been unusually promising for the visibility of work by black female artists, even while that prominence has further highlighted racially problematic attitudes within the art world. The last ten months have marked the first in which an African American woman—Carrie Mae Weems—was given a retrospective at the Guggenheim, though her triumphant entry into that pantheon led to rebukes that the museum cut the original[.....]

Antoine Catala: New Feelings at 47 Canal

The 2004 hit show Battlestar Galactica chronicles a future in which artificially intelligent robots called Cylons seek to destroy the human race as they advance and meld with technology in an almost mystical way. Constructed out of biological material, a bisected Cylon fighter plane actually bleeds—sinews, guts, and all. Other Cylons evolve to look exactly like human copies, and are so intelligent that they experience the complexities[.....]

Ragnar Kjartansson: The Visitors at ICA Boston

Ragnar Kjartansson, The Visitors, 2012, Nine-channel HD video projection, 64 minutes, Edition 4 of 6, Gift of Graham Gund to the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston and the Gund Gallery, Kenyon College. Courtesy of the artist, Luhring Augustine, New York, and i8 Gallery, Reykjavik.

The entry point to Ragnar Kjartansson’s The Visitors (2012)—if you’re lucky enough to see the beginning of the looping one-hour, nine-channel video—is like awakening each day in a house full of people who were up all night while you slept. Slightly disorienting, the sound, light, and being start streaming into the gallery as each of the screens lights up. The camera is impartial: The shots[.....]

Black Drop: Astral Observations In Spring, TX

Simon Starling. Black Drop, 2012; two stills from single channel projection (35 mm film transferred to HD), duration 27:42, the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, joint acquisition of the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, funded by the Anchorage Foundation; and the Dallas Museum of Art, funded by the DMA/amfAR Benefit Auction Fund. Image courtesy of the artist and Casey Kaplan, NY. © Simon Starling and Casey Kaplan, NY.

From our friends at Glasstire, today we bring you a review of Simon Starling’s film Black Drop. Author Peter Lucas notes, “The collaboration of art and science interests that led to the creation of the piece are fitting for its subject matter, as are the intersections of Texas arts institutions that led to the work’s first local exhibition at [a] suburban museum.” This article was originally published[.....]

#Hashtags: Human Kind

Khaled Hourani. Picasso in Palestine, 2009-2011. Photo by Sander Buyck.

#occupation #migration #civilrights #globalization #fundamentalism “Only crime and the criminal, it is true, confront us with the perplexity of radical evil; but only the hypocrite is really rotten to the core.”—Hannah Arendt “They were forced […] to condemn us without believing in our existence.”—Claude Cahun The horrific images emerging from Gaza in the past weeks have displaced any other visual reference in my mind, artistic[.....]

#Hashtags: The Politics of Rehearsal

Emily Mast. B!RDBRA!N (Epilogue), 2012. Exhibition and performance as part of Public Fiction’s 
Theatricality and Sets series. Photographer: Anitra Haendel.

#institutions #revision #making #access #nostalgia The second Made in L.A. biennial at the UCLA Hammer Museum indicates both the scope and diversity of the city’s many emerging and early-mid-career artists, and the pull that the art academy continues to exert on artists long after the completion of their degrees. The biennial’s emergence in 2012 marked a milestone in the evolution of Los Angeles as an art capital, no[.....]

Marian Drew: Centrepiece at Turner Galleries

One of my favorite pieces in the National Gallery of Victoria is Édouard Manet’s 1880 work The Melon. At around 13 x 17 inches, it’s a modest study of a rather warty specimen, but I’m always tickled by the addition of an ornate gold frame far too large for the humble painting. It’s this incongruity that always draws me back to the gallery whenever I[.....]