Oct 202017
 

If you are heading to Chelsea this weekend, stop in to these galleries which have excellent shows closing 10/21/17.

At Jack Shainman’s 24th Street space are Leslie Wayne’s rich and colorful sculptural paintings for her exhibition Free Experience.

From the press release-

In Free Experience, I have returned to the figure-ground relationship as a way of exploring the range of possibilities for the representation of an illusion in as many different ways as possible, from trompe l’oeil to verisimilitude, while still remaining undeniably within the confines of a traditional painting. These paintings are a collision of abstraction and representation, of illusion and three-dimensional form. They are defined not so much by the shape of the objects they represent, but by the perceptual slippage between object and illusion. They are, like all my work, somewhere between sculpture and painting, and perhaps in Krauss’s view would simply be considered painting in the expanded field.

Looking at art is a free experience. It costs you nothing. But it should also be an experience that is free from encumbrances, one that inspires you to see the world as if for the very first time. But perception is a tricky thing. It is never without personal history. How do we see, what do we think we see? And what makes the experience of looking at a work of art so compelling? The answer lies outside of language, in that transformational moment between looking and seeing, between information and knowledge. In that moment before the need to translate the experience into language moves from the id to the ego. Seeing is indeed forgetting the name of the thing one sees.

 

Upstairs at David Zwirner’s 20th Street location, is the gallery’s first exhibition of the work of Ruth Asawa (pictured below). It includes many of her famous wire sculptures as well as works on paper, paintings, and vintage photos of her and her work taken by Imogen Cunningham.

 

 

Oct 202017
 

                                                            Fanon (Even the Dead Are Not Safe) 2017 (image via Metro Pictures)

Artificial intelligence is a growing field with numerous implications for the future, some more sinister than others. Trevor Paglen’s current exhibition at Metro Pictures gives some insight into this evolving technology.

From the Metro Pictures press release-

Trevor Paglen’s A Study of Invisible Images is the first exhibition of works to emerge from his ongoing research into computer vision, artificial intelligence (AI) and the changing status of images. This body of work has formed over years of collaboration with software developers and computer scientists and as an artist-in-residence at Stanford University. The resulting prints and moving images reveal a proliferating and otherwise imperceptible category of “invisible images” characteristic of computer vision.

Paglen’s exhibition focuses on three distinct kinds of invisible images: training libraries, machine-readable landscapes, and images made by computers for themselves. For Machine-Readable Hito, for example, Paglen took hundreds of images of artist Hito Steyerl and subjected them to various facial recognition algorithms. This portrait of Steyerl presents the images alongside metadata indicating the age, gender, emotional state and other signifiers that the algorithms have interpreted from the images. In another portrait in the show, Paglen trained facial recognition software to read the face of philosopher Frantz Fanon. A ghostly image of Fanon shows the facial signature–the unique qualities of a face as determined by biometric recognition software–used by computer vision to identify an individual.

To make the prints in Adversarially Evolved Hallucinations, Paglen trained an AI to recognize images associated with taxonomies such as omens and portents, monsters, and dreams. A second AI worked in tandem with the first to generate the eerie, beautiful images that speak to the exuberant promises and dark undercurrents characterizing our increasingly automated world.

The video installation Behold These Glorious Times! brings together hundreds of thousands of training images routinely used for standardized computer vision experiments and pairs them with visual representations of an AI learning to recognize the objects, faces, expressions and actions. A loose narrative begins to emerge about the collapsing distinctions between humans, machines and nature. Electronic musician Holly Herndon composed a soundtrack using libraries of voices created to teach AI networks how to recognize speech and other acoustic phenomena.

The image below is one of the prints from Adversarially Evolved Hallucinations. A series of these images, presented all in one room in the back gallery, are particularly unsettling as they have elements that seem familiar while remaining distorted. As artworks, they are captivating in their strangeness as well as their beauty.

                                                                Porn (Corpus: The Humans) 2017 (image via Metro Pictures)

 

The exhibition also has a printout with more detail about the creation of the work that goes beyond the press release, located at the front of the gallery. Make sure to leave time to take in this fascinating show. A Study of Invisible Images closes 10/21/17.

May 202017
 

                                                                         My Madinah. In pursuit of my ermitage…, 2004

Jason Rhoades Installations, 1994-2006 at Hauser & Wirth is a lot of show. It’s a big exhibition with several rooms packed with things. Many, many things. In one room numerous neon expressions for female genitalia hang over a mosque-like environment (above), and in another over countless tourist novelties, bare mattresses, and truck nuts (pictured below).

The earlier work, like My Brother/Brancusi, which was created for the 1995 Whitney Biennial, feels a bit stronger, or at least less controversial.  Photos of Brancusi’s studio and Rhoades’ brother’s room are on the walls, while his version of his brother’s room complete with a tower of donuts (somehow still intact) that alludes to Brancusi’s Endless Column, and mechanical objects, fill the center of the installation.

This description is from the press release of The Creation Myth, 1998, another of the better pieces in the show, and gives an insight into Rhoades thought process behind the work-

The artist sought to understand why, how, and what humans create by exploring Creationist and Evolutionist theories in tandem. The irreverent representation of the human body and brain is structured into levels to suggest our categories of perception: the archetypal, the real, the unconscious and the rebellious. Each of the six nouns in the work’s subtitle (‘The Mind, the Body and the Spirit, the Shit, Prick and the Rebellious Part’) is metaphorically portrayed, while the function of the brain itself unfolds through a calculated combination of readymades and images. A series of stacked tables constitutes the ‘brain,’ in which a ‘train of thought’ – a toy train mounted by a snake’s head and tail – circles. Digestible ‘information’ enters the ‘brain’ in the form of pornography-wrapped logs of wood, representing the physicality of creation. Cut and disseminated, ‘information’ is incessantly processed and reproduced by cameras, mirrors, and computers. Smoke rings erupt from ‘the Asshole,’ a fleeting byproduct of the frenzied machine, a personification of the Spirit, alluding to the pursuit of the ephemeral moment.

If you love his work, the chaotic installations and selfie opportunities will delight you. If not, there is still plenty to think about after seeing the work.

                                                                                             Tijuanatanjierchandelier, 2006

This is a good interview discussing the exhibition with the curator (and former partner in the gallery) Paul Schimmel.

This exhibition closes 5/21/17.

May 062017
 

                                                                                             Drizzle (Wangechi Mutu) 2010

                                                                                                  Redhead, 2015

Marilyn Minter: Pretty/Dirty at Brooklyn Museum is absolutely stunning and a must see if you are in New York. The four decades of her work shown in the retrospective offer a chance to see the artist’s progression in style and technique, as well as content.

The exhibit starts with early black and white photos Minter took of her mother, smoking in bed, applying makeup or just staring into a mirror, with a hint of a former glamour that has now faded. It becomes immediately clear that Minter’s interest in exploring standards of beauty were present early on.  Moving through the exhibit you follow her evolution into her current work. From her early Photorealist paintings, to suggestive paintings of food, and then moving gradually to work that more explicitly uses sexual imagery, including a series of pubic hair paintings for Playboy that were mostly rejected. In that same section her slow motion videos of thick liquids being licked up and spit out on a glass pane by a red lipped mouth, walk the line between fascinating and repulsive.  Her large scale photo-realistic enamel on metal paintings that make up a large part of the retrospective are a particular standout with their lush colors.  The exhibition ends with the video, Smash, 2014, in which ominous music plays as a closeup of feet in high heeled silver sandals and red painted toenails breaks glass and splashes silvery liquid in slow motion. It is mesmerizing.

This interview with Minter is interesting and shows the work in the retrospective (from when it was shown at the Orange County Museum of Art)-

This exhibition closes 5/7/17.

 

Dec 102016
 

 

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Marc Straus gallery on the Lower East Side has two great sculpture shows closing this weekend (12/11/16). Todd Murphy’s mixed media sculptures are gorgeous creations which glow on the walls of the upstairs space.

On the first floor of the gallery, are Chris Jones’ intricate pieces created with images from discarded magazines and books. The details within these worlds become more and more apparent the longer one looks at them, including plants growing into other spaces and laundry tumbling out into other frames.
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(images via Marc Straus)

Dec 032016
 

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Too Much Seaweed, 2016

This is the final weekend of two excellent exhibitions on the Lower East Side in New York. The first is Aidas Bareikis’ Barrel of Fortune at Canada gallery.

From the press release-

In Barrel of Fortune, his first solo exhibition at CANADA, Bareikis distills his enduring vision into bundled masses. He stacks and wraps cultural objects in fabric and string, building altar-like assemblages shrouded by paint and recognizable trash. The sculptures are propped up by found furniture, wood or aluminum, and exposed to forces like time, gravity, or the elements. Rendered in deep reds, acidic oranges and vintage blues, each work operates like a junkyard relic: a curious portal into another era slowly merging with the local flora. It’s here where Bareikis navigates, somewhere between scientific method and pure psychic automatism, covering his tracks in a role equal parts wandering scientist and mad poet.

And at McKenzie Fine Art, Reed Danziger’s new paintings are dense with small details and geometric patterns which combine to form a beautiful and energetic organized chaos.

reedalexanderfromdibsDetail from A Rearrangement, 2016 (image via 1st Dibs)

Nov 172016
 

 

street art los angeles dtla killyrslf @killyrslf_1 crass statue of liberty

This image is one of LA street artist Killyrslf’s versions of Gee Vaucher’s “Oh America, which was created in 1989 and used for the cover of an album by the group Tackhead. It was just recently used for the cover of British newspaper the Daily Mirror’s November 10th issue, which highlighted the results of the 2016 American election. For more information on the choice of the image by the paper and the artist herself (and her first major retrospective exhibition on now in Essex) check out this article.

Nov 062016
 

Unsatisfying by Parallel Studio

Love this funny, relatable video.

Here is some information from their Vimeo page-

During the summer of 2016, We created and directed a video about unsatisfying situations: the frustrating, annoying, disappointing little things of everyday life, that are so painful to live or even to watch.

We quickly realized that there are a lot of other situations that would be fun to see animated, so we decided to run an animation challenge around this idea.
Join the Unsatisfying Challenge Here : unsatisfying.tv/

Direction Animation and illustration : Parallel Studio
Sound Design : Zelig Sound
Music : Samuel Barber
Special Thanks to : Hugo Leick

Follow us on
facebook.com/parallelstudioparis/
dribbble.com/Parallel_Studio
instagram.com/parallel_studio_/

Apr 162016
 
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© Eleanor Macnair (image courtesy Kopeikin Gallery)

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Untitled, 1975 © William Eggleston

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© Eleanor Macnair (image courtesy Kopeikin Gallery)

Nan one month after being battered 1984 Nan Goldin born 1953 Purchased 1997 http://www.tate.org.uk/art/work/P78045

Nan one month after being battered, 1984 © Nan Goldin (image courtesy tate.org.uk)

Currently at Kopeikin Gallery are Eleanor Macnair’s delightful Play-Doh recreations of famous photographs (I’ve included the original photos for comparison, they are not in the show).  In the second part of the gallery is Michael Lange’s serene series Wald/Fluss (Forest/River).

WALD | Landscapes of Memory forest in Germany (image courtesy of Kopeikin Gallery)

This exhibition closes 4/16/16.

Mar 052016
 

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Currently at Gavlak Gallery are Bovey Lee’s amazingly detailed rice paper works for her solo exhibition Divertical.

From the press release-

Taking inspiration from the overwhelming nature of a cross-country move, the works are predominated by a motif of rollercoasters winding their way throughout the pieces and often forming the perimeter of the cuttings. The title of the exhibition itself takes its name from an actual rollercoaster, the world’s tallest water roller coaster located in Italy. Embedded within each work – contrasting with the chaos of the rollercoaster and the natural and urban elements that fill the work – is evidence of a small balancing act, depicted in the form of a tightrope walker, an acrobat, or a surfer carefully balanced on his board. Speaking to the motivation for her move, the works also feature imagery associated with romantic relationships – wedding bouquets, engagement rings, cakes, and eternity symbols populate the pieces.

In the front of the gallery is Amy Bessone’s In The Century of Women, a combination of sculptures and prints concerned with the female image. The large bronze and ceramic sculptures contrast the female torsos on pedestals with the large pipes on the floor that perhaps suggest the male onlooker. The prints on the wall are “based on discarded images of divorcées from newspaper archives, dating from the 1930’s-1970’s.” They invite viewers to imagine narratives for these women who in certain instances stare out at you from their moment in time.

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Both of these exhibitions close 3/5/16.

(images courtesy of Gavlak Gallery)