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Former Scotland Yard Detectives Call on London’s Metropolitan Police to Not Abandon Art Crimes Division

August 18th, 2017

New Scotland Yard, via Financial TimesFormer Scotland Yard detectives have called on London’s Metropolitan Police to maintain its art crimes investigation, following the reappointment of the division’s detectives to investigating the Grenfell Tower fire. “There’s a point when you have to ask when they’re going to come back,” says Vernon Rapley, former head of the art squad at Scotland Yard. “Temporary can become permanent. They are one of the very few international teams that are able to deal with what are incredibly complex and difficult cases that could not easily be dealt with using normal detectives or officers.”
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Njideka Akunyili Crosby Interviewed in W Magazine

August 18th, 2017

Njideka Akunyili Crosby, via WNjideka Akunyili Crosby is profiled in W Magazine this month, with a profile tracing the artist’s work and her response to her recent successes. “People expect me to be happy, but it put a spotlight on me in a way I don’t like at all,” she says. “I like operating quietly, on my own, in the background.”
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Collector David Roberts to Open Sculpture Park in Somerset

August 17th, 2017

David Roberts, via Art NewspaperLondon collector David Roberts has plans to close his gallery, and open a 20-acre sculpture park in Somerset, west England, Art Newspaper reports.“We’ll still continue to do things in London,” he says. “The sale of the venue, which is funded mainly by me, means we can take on more projects.” 
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REFERENCE LIBRARY

Berlin – Thomas Ruff: “New Works” at Sprüth Magers Through August 26th, 2017

August 19th, 2017

Thomas Ruff, PRESS++32.54, (2016), via Art Observed
Thomas Ruff, PRESS++32.54 (2016), via Art Observed

Process is product for Thomas Ruff.  The German photographer has explored a wide ranging body of work over the course of his thirty-plus years of his practice, frequently using the act of creating a photographic image as the generative locus for his work. Embarking on a new body of work in past years, the artist’s press++ series makes its debut this month at Sprüth Magers in Berlin, a fascinating investigation of the act of image production and consumption. Read More »

New York – Julien Ceccaldi: “Gay” at Lomex Gallery Through August 17th, 2017

August 17th, 2017

Julien Ceccaldi, Pompeii Bathhouse (2017), via Art Observed
Julien Ceccaldi, Pompeii Bathhouse (2017), via Art Observed

Lomex Gallery, housed in Eva Hesse’s former studio, continues a hot streak of quality programming with their current exhibition of new works by artist Julien Ceccaldi. The show, bluntly titled Gay, is a gathering of Ceccaldi’s paintings on various materials, combining a range of unique, well-orchestrated surfaces. Read More »

New York – “Sunset Décor,” Curated by Magali Arriola at Marian Goodman Through August 25th, 2017

August 16th, 2017

Sunset Decor (Installation View), via Marian Goodman
Sunset Décor (Installation View), via Marian Goodman

Taking its cues from the pioneering work of Marcel Broodthaers, Marian Goodman’s summer group show serves as a fascinating inquiry into the line between reality and fiction, between concrete objects and the narratives that ultimately spring forth from their often incomplete contexts.  Curated by Magali Arriola, former curator at the Fundacion Jumex in Mexico City, Sunset Décor takes aim at the possibilities conjured by Broodthaers’s late work, and the state of uncertainty that objects, and often images, are able to sustain in the modern cultural landscape. Read More »

New York – Richard Misrach and Guillermo Galindo: “Border Cantos,” Presented by Pace Gallery and Pace/MacGill Gallery Through August 18th, 2017

August 13th, 2017


Installation View. All images via Pace Gallery.

Pace Gallery and Pace/MacGill Gallery present Border Cantos, a collaborative multimedia exhibition by artists Richard Misrach and Guillermo Galindo. Misrach, an American photographer, and Galindo, a Mexican-American experimental composer, have been working together since 2011, blending musical scores and photography, instrumentation and sculpture, to discuss and represent the increasingly militarized 1,969-mile border wall between the United States and Mexico. The work in Border Cantos spans photography, sculpture, and sound, integrated seamlessly to create an impression of the presence of tragedy and tenuousness. Read More »

New York – Robert Grosvenor at Karma Through August Through August 13th, 2017

August 12th, 2017

Robert Grosvenor, Untitled (2014-2017), via Art Observed
Robert Grosvenor, Untitled (2014-2017), via Art Observed

Three cars parked side by side make up Robert Grosvenor’s Untitled (2014-17), a single work presented as the artist’s second solo exhibition at Karma’s downtown exhibition space. We can’t be certain that the term “parked” accurately describes these objects, however, as it implies movement that was halted, and a close assessment of the vehicles does not yield a consensus on their past or present mobility. Our fascination with Grosvenor’s sculptures runs parallel to our suspension in this perpetual state of uncertainty, in which the work of art becomes the site of an investigation into the identity of an object.

Robert Grosvenor, Untitled (detail) (2014-2017), via Art Observed
Robert Grosvenor, Untitled (detail) (2014-2017), via Art Observed

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New York – Jenny Sabin Studio’s ‘Lumen’ on view at MoMA PS1 Through September 4th, 2017

August 10th, 2017

Jenny Sabin, Lumen, via Art Observed
Jenny Sabin, Lumen, via Art Observed

Marking its embrace of the hot summer months in New York, MoMA PS1‘s popular Warm-Up summer concert series has returned to New York City, bringing with it the annual Young Architects Program design for an outdoor canopy structure to shade and entertain visitors and concert-goers in the museum’s open courtyard.  This year, the museum has tapped Jenny Sabin Studio, a Cornell-based design group known for its tech-first design concepts and use of woven, photo-reactive materials, spreading a photo-luminescent tent structure, and robotically-woven chairs across the space.  Read More »

New York – Tom Burr and Andrea Zittel: “Concrete Realities” at Bortolami Gallery Through August 11th, 2017

August 7th, 2017

Andrea Zittel and Tom Burr, Concrete Realities (Installation View), via Art Observed
Andrea Zittel and Tom Burr, Concrete Realities (Installation View), via Art Observed

Over the course of their respective careers, Andrea Zittel and Tom Burr have both negotiated an enigmatic and thorough interest in the built environment, addressing questions of site-specificity, subjectivity, and the body through spaces and environments that pull lived space and imagined realities into a shared domain.  This month at Bortolami, the pair’s respective visions will also share a common site, grappling with similar visual languages and interests in text, assemblage and architecture to challenge readings of space, and the strategies we employ to exist within our given environments.  Read More »

New York — Ai Weiwei, Jacques Herzog and Pierre de Meuron: “Hansel & Gretel” at The Park Armory Through August 6th, 2017

August 6th, 2017

Ai Weiwei, Jacques Herzog and Pierre de Meuron, Hansel and Gretel (Installation View) at Park Avenue Armory. Photo by James Ewing
Ai Weiwei, Jacques Herzog and Pierre de Meuron, Hansel and Gretel (Installation View) at Park Avenue Armory. Photo by James Ewing

Exploration of surveillance and its corresponding limits has long remained a prominent thread in Ai Weiwei’s aggressively political multimedia practice, particularly following his detainment and imprisonment by Chinese authorities in 2011 due to his vocal dissent of the country’s governmental policies on human rights. Hansel & Gretel, Weiwei’s Park Armory tour-de-force in collaboration with architects Jacques Herzog and Pierre de Meuron, furthers his past surveillance-themed projects such as 2012’s WeiweiCam, for which the artist had installed fifteen cameras around his Beijing residence to stream a 24-hour live footage of his home. Coinciding with the one year anniversary of his detention by the Chinese government, the comparison the artist built between actual imprisonment and systematic violation of privacy echoes with his current occupation of Park Armory’s Guild Hall, transforming the column-free exhibition space into a pitch black zone of uncertainty and peril. Read More »

New York – Leo Xu Projects and Metro Pictures Host “A New Ballardian Vision” for Condo: New York, Through August 4th, 2017

August 4th, 2017

Robert Longo, Untitled (Bodyhammer 9mm) (2008), via Art Observed
Robert Longo, Untitled (Bodyhammer: 9mm) (2008), via Art Observed

Few writers have walked such a fine line between coy observations of modernity and the possible dystopian future that lay just under the surface of daily life in the way that writer J.G. Ballard had over the course of his more than fifty years of writing.  Mixing a playful sense of imagination with dark and disturbing meditations on the state of the world, the writer’s work continues to serve as a major inspiration for artists and philosophers in the 21st century, just as some of the futuristic conditions he so often described have begun to manifest themselves in the real world. Read More »

New York – Satoshi Kojima at Bridget Donahue Through August 4th, 2017

August 2nd, 2017

Satoshi Kojima, Last Dance (2016), via Art Observed
Satoshi Kojima, Last Dance (2016), via Art Observed

Now through August 4, Bridget Donahue in New York presents an exhibition by painter Satoshi Kojima, his first ever North American show. The artist’s pastel-hued paintings offer a view into alternative histories, realities, and even other planets, executed with an updated Surrealist sensibility.  Kojima’s paintings invite the viewer into multiple different worlds of unfolding weirdness and intrigue, all through the softness of his color palette, in conjunction with the bizarre worlds he envisions. Read More »

New York – Leo Villareal at Pace Gallery Through August 11th, 2017

August 2nd, 2017

Leo Villareal, Ellipse (2017), via Art Observed
Leo Villareal, Ellipse (2017), via Art Observed

Marking his first exhibition with Pace since joining the gallery this past year, artist Leo Villareal has opened a show of new works at the gallery’s 24th Street exhibition space. Villareal, whose twinkling, shifting LED light installations are iconic parts of the urban landscape from New York to San Francisco and around the globe, has built a reputation for his nuanced understanding of public space, and the capacity for simple light arrays to transform its environment, and brings a series of new installations, light panels and video to the gallery. Read More »

Water Mill, NY – The 24th Annual Watermill Center Summer Benefit & Auction, July 29th, 2017

August 1st, 2017

Painting the wall, via Art Observed
Painting the wall at Watermill Center, via Art Observed

The 24th Annual Watermill Center Summer Benefit & Auction took place this past Saturday evening, returning to Robert Wilson’s expansive performing and interdisciplinary arts campus with a new selection of performances and installations laid out across the grounds. Honoring performer Laurie Anderson and actress Isabelle Huppert this year, the event also served as a tribute to the late artist and musician Lou Reed, while also serving to benefit the Watermill Center’s continued residency and research projects. Anderson and Reed previously performed a work together, The Wildebeests, at the event in 1997, reprised this year as a culmination of the evening’s proceedings.

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Water Mill, NY — John Graham: “Maverick Modernist” at The Parrish Art Museum Through July 30, 2017

July 30th, 2017

John Graham, Mascara (1950), via Art Observed
John Graham, Mascara (1950), via Osman Can Yerebakan for Art Observed

Divided into two opposite galleries inside the Parrish Art Museum’s sleek architecture, John Graham: Maverick Modernist, a comprehensive survey of the 20th century Ukrainian-American painter, offers a breakdown of the artist’s ever-evolving four-decade long career from 1920s and onward.  Curated by Alicia G. Longwell, the show recaps Graham’s defiant approach to Modernism, considering his sharp divergence from his dedication to modern art for the sake of figurative portraiture of female sitters in the 1940’s. Even then, at the height of his career, referring to Graham as a maverick would not be misguided: his models’ cross-eyed expressions, excessive make-ups, and mathematical details on their faces clash with easy readings as representational, and offer an intriguing historical context for much later practice in contemporary painting. Read More »

East Hampton — Taryn Simon: “The Innocents” at Guild Hall Through July 30th, 2017

July 29th, 2017

Taryn Simon, Charles Irvin Fain, Innocents (2002), via Guild Hall
Taryn Simon, Charles Irvin Fain, Scene of the crime, the Snake River, Melba, Idaho, Served 18 years of a Death sentence for Murder, Rape and Kidnapping; The Innocents (2002), courtesy Taryn Simon Studio and Guild Hall

Since Taryn Simon first delivered her seminal The Innocents series in 2002, the New York-based artist’s work has continued to revisit and re-examine the concepts of power, identity and their interrelated social effects, examining how varied political conditions render real human effects on the body, and on space.  This summer, East Hampton’s historic art and culture center, The Guild Hall re-contextualizes Simon’s compelling photography series about misconceptions of guilt and impossibility of rewinding time on its 15th anniversary, serving as a backdrop for ongoing discussions around prejudice, injustice, and empathy. Organized by Guild Hall Chief Curator Christina Mossaides Strassfield, the exhibition reiterates a selection of photographs and video from the overall series that had its debut at MoMA PS1 in 2003. Read More »

New York — Philippe Vandenberg Is On View at Hauser & Wirth Through July 28, 2017

July 28th, 2017

Philippe Vandenberg, No Title (ca. 2007), via Art Observed
Philippe Vandenberg, No Title (ca. 2007), via Art Observed

When the Belgian artist Philippe Vandenberg committed suicide at his Ghent home in 2009, he left behind an expansive body of work, including a drawing book that brims with semi-abstract watercolor sketches detailing the artist’s inner conflicts. Dedicated to the work Vandenberg created between 2006 and his death, Hauser & Wirth’s exhibition at its uptown space in New York aims to bring the legacy of the pioneer painter back to the New York art world’s attention. While Vandenberg left a significant footprint in his hometown during the European Neo-Expressionist movement of the 1980’s, he maintained a relatively low profile in the United States, with only a handful of solo exhibitions in the last three decades. This show, organized by Anthony Huberman, the director of San Francisco’s CCA Wattis Institute for Contemporary Art, expands throughout the gallery, bringing together a group of milestones from his last years that underscores his unique vision. Read More »

New York – Meschac Gaba at Tanya Bonakdar Through July 28th, 2017

July 27th, 2017

Meschac Gaba, Reflection Room Tent (2017), via Tanya Bonakdar
Meschac Gaba, Reflection Room Tent (2017), via Tanya Bonakdar

Working between Benin and the Netherlands during the course of the past 20 years, artist Meschac Gaba has forged a unique language for addressing and visualizing the varied effects and themes both driving and stemming from the rapid pace of globalization.  Utilizing a playful approach to environmental installation and sculpture, Gaba’s work frequently presents spaces and scenes drawing from the marketplace and the museum, the refugee camp or the modern office.  For his current solo exhibition at Tanya Bonakdar Gallery in New York, Gaba has installed his Reflection Room Tent piece, opening a space for dialogue and engagement between visitors inside the gallery space.

Meschac Gaba, Memoriale aux Refugies Noyees (Memorial for Drowned Refugees) (2016), via Tanya Bonakdar
Meschac Gaba, Memoriale aux Refugies Noyees (Memorial for Drowned Refugees) (2016), via Tanya Bonakdar Read More »

New York – Shannon Ebner: “Stray” at Eva Presenhuber Through July 29th, 2017

July 26th, 2017

Shannon Ebner, Will And Be Going To (2017), via Art Observed
Shannon Ebner, Will And Be Going To (2017), via Art Observed

Los Angeles-based artist Shannon Ebner has marked her first solo exhibition with Eva Presenhuber this month, taking over the gallery’s exhibition space at 39 Great Jones in New York with a series of photographs on aluminum that mark the artist’s continued engagement with temporality and space.  Spread across the gallery’s two floor layout, Ebner’s photographs confront the viewer with a series of reinterpreted engagements with the act of photographic production, pushing for meditations into the creative act and exhibition of her images.

Shannon Ebner, Signal Escapes (2017), via Art Observed
Shannon Ebner, Signal Escapes (2017), via Art Observed

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Paris – Cerith Wyn Evans: “as if, seeing in the manner of listening… hearing, as if looking” at Marian Goodman Through July 28th, 2017

July 25th, 2017

Cerith Wyn Evans, S=U=T=R=A2 (2017), via Sophie Kitching for Art Observed
Cerith Wyn Evans, S=U=T=R=A2 (2017), via Sophie Kitching for Art Observed

Mixing together sonic and visual systems of perception, artist Cerith Wyn Evans has opened an exhibition of new works at Marian Goodman’s Paris exhibition space, marking an expansion of the artist’s long-running interest in the gray area between speech and written text, sound and image.  Spread out across multiple floors in the gallery, the artist’s pieces delve into the functions behind cognition and spatial awareness, using familiar imagery and the written word to shape and disrupt the acts of reading, seeing and hearing.  Read More »

New York — “Lyric on a Battlefield” at Gladstone Gallery Through July 28, 2017

July 24th, 2017

Lyric On a Battlefield (Installation View), Photos by David Regen. Courtesy Gladstone Gallery, New York and Brussels
Lyric On a Battlefield (Installation View), Photos by David Regen. Courtesy Gladstone Gallery, New York and Brussels

“No one writes lyric on a battlefield. On a map stuck with arrows,” begins Quarto, a 2009 poem by the feminist author and essayist Adrienne Rich. Adopting its name from the metaphorical expression Rich uses in her poem’s first line, Gladstone Gallery’s summer group exhibition, Lyric on a Battlefield, seeks impressions of beauty inherent in the struggles and joys of everyday experience through the poetic and personal narrative of life. Organized by Miciah Hussey, the exhibition pairs established names such as Suzanne McClelland, Anne Collier, and Ellen Berkenblit with a younger generation of artists like Monique Mouton and Louisa Clement.

Lyric On a Battlefield (Installation View), Photos by David Regen. Courtesy Gladstone Gallery, New York and Brussels
Lyric On a Battlefield (Installation View), Photos by David Regen. Courtesy Gladstone Gallery, New York and Brussels

The introspective and meditative nature of the lyric, in terms of offering a highly subjective interpretation of time and space, infuses each juxtaposition of collective human experiences, like loss, intimacy, and memory, with a sense of vivid and often urgent vitality.  Presented here, the show’s works turn this sense of humanity into a powerful rumination on modern society, and the varied experiences that undergird our negotiation with everyday existence.

The biggest discovery of the exhibition is f.marquespenteado, the gender-nonconforming pseudonym of the Brazilian artist Fernando Marques Penteado, who combines traditional embroidery methods with found objects and text to orchestrate installations brimming with complex narratives. Although the artist is an established name in his native country and in Europe, his presence in New York has remained somewhat limited, with the exception of his inclusion in the Jewish Museum’s 2015 group exhibition Orthodox, which had aptly focused on artists outside mainstream dynamics of the art world.

The artist’s ability to infuse emotion, sensuality and soul to everyday objects allows him to marry domesticity with sexuality, while his texts add a sense of vivacity and character to his often mundane materials. The embroidery he accentuates and defamiliarizes his arbitrary objects which stems from a dedication to a practice that has been traditionally associated with feminine labor. In one of the installations, two pairs of clogs are placed in front of a wooden rake and dried flowers, standing in for a pair of absent bodies of two male lovers whose relationship is recounted through an imaginary interview conducted with one of them.

Lyric On a Battlefield (Installation View), Photos by David Regen. Courtesy Gladstone Gallery, New York and Brussels
Lyric On a Battlefield (Installation View), Photos by David Regen. Courtesy Gladstone Gallery, New York and Brussels

Lyric On a Battlefield (Installation View), Photos by David Regen. Courtesy Gladstone Gallery, New York and Brussels
Lyric On a Battlefield (Installation View), Photos by David Regen. Courtesy Gladstone Gallery, New York and Brussels

By contrast, Suzanne McClelland’s large scale double-sided painting Reg Park and the Hard Gainers exemplifies the Brooklyn-based painter’s decades-long investigation of text, data, and image culture through the lens of American ideals such as success, fame, and class. What appear on the surface as tempestuous and fervent abstract paintings, emanating from loose hand gestures, encapsulate her research and analysis-heavy process regarding facts prevalent in our society, such as male privilege and unjust distribution of opportunity. Adorned with slightly abstracted letters and names, McClelland’s abstract paintings further the artist’s interpretation of information as a fluctuating entity through their double-sided natures that offer alternative paths to same ends.

This sense of text and movement, experience and action, running throughout the show makes for an intriguing engagement with intersections of text and the life it describes. Lyric on a Battlefield is on view at Gladstone Gallery through July 28, 2017.

— O.C. Yerebakan

Read more:
Gladstone Gallery [Exhibition Page]

New York – Harumi Yamaguchi Presented by Project Native Informant at Bridget Donahue Gallery for CONDO New York Through July 29th, 2017

July 23rd, 2017

Harumi Yamaguchi at Project Native Informant, via Art Observed
Harumi Yamaguchi, Fight Mode (1976) via Art Observed

Tucked in the back room of Bridget Donahue‘s Bowery exhibition space lies Project Native Informant’s contribution to the itinerant exhibition project CONDO: Harumi Yamaguchi’s first US solo exhibition. Yamaguchi, a commercial artist active from the 1970’s onwards, is an expert air-brusher. Not unlike fellow artist and commercial illustrator Hajime Sorayama, her illustrations portray human figures in an idealized setting: perfect lighting, unblemished skin, and gleaming white teeth, a sense of almost unnerving beauty amplified by their provocative poses and minimalist backdrops.

Harumi Yamaguchi at Project Native Informant Hosted by Bridget Donahue, via Bridget Donahue
Harumi Yamaguchi at Project Native Informant Hosted by Bridget Donahue, via Bridget Donahue

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Paris – Alex Israel: “Summer 2″ at Almine Rech Through July 29th, 2017

July 22nd, 2017

Alex Israel, Pelican (2017), via Almine Rech
Alex Israel, Pelican (2017), via Almine Rech

Marking a new stage in his engagement with the cultural landscape and natural phenomena of the California coastline, Alex Israel returns to Almine Rech’s Paris location this month, presenting his aptly titled solo exhibition, Summer 2.  Drawn from the artist’s work on his forthcoming feature-length film, SPF-18, Israel has created a series of aluminum and acrylic wetsuit sculptures, text-based pieces, and an extremely detailed pelican sculpture, each presenting its own twist on the familiar iconography of the beach environments he has so often used as source material. Read More »

London — Lisa Yuskavage at David Zwirner Gallery Through July 28th, 2017

July 21st, 2017

Lisa Yuskavage, Déjà Vu (2017) via Art Observed
Lisa Yuskavage, Déjà Vu (2017) via Art Observed

On view at David Zwirner Gallery‘s London exhibition space, now through July 28th, is a new series of new paintings by Lisa Yuskavage.  Often associated with the re-emergence of figuration in contemporary painting, Yuskavage’s work is noted for its psychedelic, colorfully vibrant style, and its often sexually-charged subject matter. Her paintings embody a unique genre of portraiture—a blending of imagined and contemporary subjects set against classical tropes and icons of human sexuality. In this series, Yuskavage draws upon the world of American hippies, where slinky, bodacious women lounge about and cavort with semi-nude men. It is worth noting that while the hyper-sexualized women remain the dominant characters, the inclusion of men in her work is a fairly new departure for Yuskavage. Read More »

New York – Louise Lawler: ‘WHY PICTURES NOW’ at MoMA Through July 30th, 2017

July 20th, 2017

Louise Lawler, Life After (Faces), (2006:2007), via Art Observed
Louise Lawler, Life After (Faces), (2006/2007), via Art Observed

The Museum of Modern Art has opened the first New York museum survey of the work of Louise Lawler, moving throughout a broad range of the American artist’s conceptual exercises and investigations into the power dynamics and aesthetic underpinnings of the art world at large.  Running from the artist’s early photographic investigations and her explorations into the presentation, representation, and, as she titles it “re-presentation,” of various works and images from the expanse of modern art history, the exhibition is a bold reflection on the artist’s work throughout the past 40 years, as well as a rumination on the continued role of the museum as a site for the understanding of the field’s history more broadly. Read More »

New York – “The Horizontal” at Cheim & Read Through August 31st, 2017

July 19th, 2017

Matthew Wong, Last Summer in Santa Monica (2017), via Sarah Cohen for Art Observed
Matthew Wong, Last Summer in Santa Monica (2017), via Sarah Cohen for Art Observed

Drawing on a continuous engagement with the poetics of the horizon and its recurring presence across the history of contemporary painting, Cheim & Read has opened its summer group exhibition, The Horizontal.  Culling together a diverse group of artists from the past eighty years of artistic practice, the show is an investigation and reflection on the horizon as a motif weaving its way throughout varied investigations of modern art-making.  Photography, painting, drawing and print-making each make their presence felt throughout the exhibition, inviting a deep perspective on how the skyline, and its attendant impact on the viewer’s perception, has continued to inspire artist’s work into the modern day.

Louise Fishman, Bitter Herb (1988), via Sarah Cohen for Art Observed
Louise Fishman, Bitter Herb (1988), via Sarah Cohen for Art Observed

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