Weve only Just Begun
I would say that I’m ready to lay down my sword and shield, except that I own neither. I also could serve up a cliché about pens and swords, but it seems totally irrelevant. There has been plenty of dissent in the press and elsewhere regarding the pending war in Iraq, but in the end it doesn’t matter. The president is ready to take on Saddam, Congress is quite willing to back him up, and the only real question is whether General Tommy Franks will be an able occupation ruler of Iraq.
And so, reluctantly, I must refrain from saying that “I ain’t gonna study war no more.” That’s because we are being given very little choice other than to do so. Last fall, Donald Rumsfeld promised a forty-year war on terrorism, and by my count, that means we’ve got 39 more years to go. That the richest, most powerful nation in human history can devise no better means for ruling the world other than through military aggression seems rather primitive. But perhaps I’m the one who’s being naïve.
The good news is that very few pages in this issue actually pertain to Iraq. In fact, this issue is dedicated to the proposition that there is more to life than war. Peace.
Exposé·esBy Norman L Kleeblatt
MAY 2023 | ArtSeen
While recently in Paris, I saw a curious, complex, and riveting exhibition titled Exposé·es at the Palais de Tokyo. It was inspired by and named after art historian, critic, and activist Elisabeth Lebovicis highly personal book What AIDS Did to Me (Exposées: Dapres Ce que le sida ma fait dElisabeth Lebovici).
Juan Francisco Elso: Por AméricaBy Jonathan Goodman
FEB 2023 | ArtSeen
Juan Francisco Elso: Por América at El Museo del Barrio not only includes the limited work Elso produced before passing away, but also the art of more than thirty artists from Cuba, the Caribbean, and the Americas.
Thérèse Mulgrew: Room 126By Madison Ford
APRIL 2023 | ArtSeen
Thérèse Mulgrew developed her new solo exhibition at Freight + Volume by engaging with the tenets of cinema, conceiving of the whole as a short film caught in oil on canvas. What results is an exhibition experience unafraid to employ exactness in service of emotional resonance. To step into the gallery is to concede to a directorial pursuit and submit to the voyeurs perch.
Benoît Platéus: Other PercolatorsBy Ann C. Collins
FEB 2023 | ArtSeen
While the pictures retain distinct traces of the images from which Platéus works, his titles nudge viewers to riff on the visual and textual clues he presents, freely allowing their own associations to bubble up. It is his hope that new possibilities of interpretation will arise with each encounter as viewers interact with the works, revealing the ways in which seeing is a deeply personaland perhaps a bit magicalact.