Best. Gallery. Name. Ever.
Art? Or Not Art?
Black is the New Black. Again
William J. OBrien at Marianne Boesky Gallery, New York, ABMB
Installation of glazed ceramic and wrapped fabric forms
One of the great pleasures for me at these fairs is seeing the enormous range of stuff out of which art is made. Contemporary art is comprised of a variety of materials, we know that, but in three or four days at the fairs—more than, say, in a month in Chelsea—you see it all: string, twine, thread, clay, silicone, wax, rubber, wood scraps, wood shims, metal, resins, glass, wire, pins, needles, buttons, stuffing, mattresses, carpet, glazed ceramic, fabric, plywood, rolled paper, glue tiles, boxes, chains, lace--shall I go on?--as well as paint used in the most dimensional ways possible.
And artists do all kinds of largely process-oriented things to these materials. You’ve already seen some of this in the various venue posts, but here’s an opportunity to immerse yourself in process and materiality. Where I had details I included them. Whether you view these details as gilding the lily or the straw that breaks the camel’s back depends on how you feel about materiality as an approach to artmaking and as an esthetic of its own.
El Anatsui at Jack Shainman, New York, ABMB
Pierced and twisted metal from liquor bottle necks
Above and below: Shimmering and fluid, it is so huge it needed two pictures for you to see the whole thing
Fabian Marcaccio at Thomas Schulte Gallery, Berlin, ABMB
Detail below, where you can see pigmented silicone on an
open-weave "canvas" of rope and bungee cords
(All material descriptions come from the wall labels as well as what I observed)
Margie Livingston at Luis De Jesus, Los Angeles, Pulse
If this work resembles particleboard, it's intentional. The artist's goal this year was to was to "make objects out of paint." The detail below shows layers of acrylic paint cut into strips, and short segments of those strips layered into a simulacrum of particle board.
See more on Livingston in my Pulse report
Karin Waskiewicz at Schroeder Romero and Shredder, New York, Pulse
Detail above, full view below: This is a small piece, maybe 16 inches high. The artist has skived into layers of acrylic paint. (My suggestion: Go wax, young woman.) She's also in my Pulse report
Jim Lambie at Anton Kern, New York, ABMB
Detail above, installation view below: Layers of exquisitely painted metal whose corners are folded like paper
At Thatcher Projects, New York, Pulse
Bill Thompson wall sculptures, Robert Sagerman painting made with pointillist daubs of color on linen
Rudolf Stingel at ABMB, gallery unidentified (his work was in four different booths)
This small painting is made from pigmented cast polyurethane rubber compound.
Detail of the pile-like surface below
Anna Betbeze at It Ain't Fair: Materialism, an exhibition in a tent in the Miami Design District that ran concurently with the fairs
Detail above, and full view below, of Betbeze's repurposed materials, the result a painting that suggests paleolithic pelts by way of the 21st Century on the Lower East Side
Two panoramic viewas of It Ain't Fair: Materialism, produced by the Los Angeles-based gallery, Ohwow
Above: looking into the exhibition. Work by Betbeze, left; Sam Falls (tire prints on long sheet of vinyl), center; and Angel Otero (oil paint skins collaged onto resin-coated canvas) on wall right
Below: view of the space at the back of the gallery
Kishio Suga at Tomio Koyama Gallery, Tokyo, ABMB
Installation view above
Surface detail below
Mathias Goertiz at Mary Anne Martin Fine Art, New York, ABMB
This work, of gilded metal on wood, is about 27 x 27 inches. It's as elegant as the Suga work above it is roughewn. I love them both. Detail below
Elliott Hundley at Regen Projects, Los Angeles, ABMB
Talk about being on pins and needles--and extruded polystyrene, plastic, silk, oil paint, metal leaf and found backdrop. Full view below
Tom Burr at ABMB, gallery unidentified (his work was in four different booths)
Blankets are manpulated and tacked to a support.
Lucio Fontana at Adler & Conkright, New York, ABMB
This was a suprise. A concetto spaziale in glazed terra cotta
Takuro Kuwata at Tomio Koyama Gallery, Tokyo, ABMB
Glazed ceramic, full view below
William J. O'Brien at Marianne Boesky, New York, ABMB
O'Brien's work opened this post, but I wanted you to get a sense of the installation. Here, looking into the booth at the objects on plywood pedestals
Below: looking around the booth from within
Cathy Wilkes at The Modern Institute/Toby Webster Ltd., London, at ABMB
These two small works, about 8 x 10 inches, are made not only of clay, but of oil paint, lacquer, collage and thread on canvas. They comprise an installation . . .
. . . in which the work below, by Richard Hughes, sits on a pedestal in the middle of a small space. It may look like canvas draped over an object, but it's cast polyester and polyurethane resins, phosphorescent pigments, and acrylic and enamel paint
Esther Klas at Peter Blum, New York, ABMB
I love the forms, aranged in an installation that allowed for perambulation. The sculptures are made of various materials, including aquaresin, wood, and a pigmented surface of undeclared composition
Beatrice Wood at Francis M. Naumann Fine Art, New York, ABMB
So you never heard of Beatrice Wood?
She was the doyenne of the ceramic world, known for her handbuilt forms and lustre glazes, though her oeuvre included a range of mediums. She lived a boho life and died in 1998 at the age of 105
Below: a glazed vessel
Tara Donovan at Pace (I think), ABMB
Donovan's sculpture, about 24 inches high, suggests an undersea coral or a mined quartzlike mineral, as lustrous as one of Wood's glazes. But it's made of thousands of clear pink buttons. Detail below
Erwin Wurm at the Bass Museum of Art
I'm not so keen on his puffy sculptures and other more conceptual projects, but I love what he does with a sweater. Here, it's a knitted wall with two disembodied sweater arms, one of which is shown below
Lynda Benglis at ABMB (shown here at either Cheim & Read, her current dealer, or Paula Cooper, who was her early dealer)
The painting, in encaustic on masonite, is about 30 inches high. It is dated 1967/82
India Lawrence at Tilton Gallery, New York, ABMB
Three pennants of hand-dyed cotton, starch and embossing powder with snap fasteners
Angela de la Cruz, Lisson Gallery, London, ABMB
Oil on canvas, is about 72 inches high
De la Cruz is the master of the deconstructed painting, though not everyone agrees with me. Here's a detail of an actual overheard conversation, one button-down guy to another:
"Hey, it's missing its frame. What the?"
"The frame goes around the painting. It's not missing its frame. It's missing its stretchers."
"Why'd they take them off? Now it doesn't hang right."
A Gentil Carioca, Rio de Janiero, ABMB
The entire booth was stuff. Foreground, Maria Nepomuceno crochet sculpture
Donna Sharrett at Pavel Zoubok, New York, Pulse
Two collaged and sewn works. Detail below
Cecilila Biagini at Pentimenti Gallery, Philadelphia, Aqua Art
Painted wood shims assembled into a sculptural painting
Marianne Vitale at Zach Feuer, New York, ABMB
Reclaimed wood, about 65 inches high
Michael DeLucia at Eleven Rivington, New York, NADA
Sergio Sister at Galerie Nara Poesler, Sao Paolo, ABMB
Section of installation with Caixas, painted boxes
Detail of one below
Hadieh Shafie at Pentimenti Gallery, Philadelphia, at Aqua Art
This construction, about 30 inches in diameter (as I recall) is composed of painted scrolls inked in in Farsi
Robert Moya at Conrad Wilde Gallery, Tucson, Aqua Art
Moya's work, (almost) full view below right, is composed of glue tiles made by the artist
Installation view of Conrad Wilde Gallery with, from left: Jessica Drenk PVC relif sculptures, Eun-Kyung Suh fabric boxes, Moya construction, Ruth Hiller painting; foreground, Cameron Luft sculpture
Ruth Hiller, S, 2011, encaustic on panel
This biomorphic relief by Ruth Hiller will reappear in the next (and penultimate) post, Some Paintings. With her dimensional painting as the pivot, we'll pick up where we leave off, here in the Conrad Wilde Gallery, and consider more conventionally two-dimensional work.
Coming Friday afternoon: Some Paintings
Next Week: The Miami Roundup, plus the answers to Art? Or Not Art?
In the meantime, in The New York Times Roberta Smith offers an appraisal of John Chamberlain and Helen Frankenthaler, two artists who died within a week of each other recently and who were engaged in innovative use of materials for their time.
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