Alfred Mac Adam
Alfred Mac Adam is Professor of Latin American literature at Barnard College-Columbia University. He is a translator, most recently of Juan Villoro’s Horizontal Vertigo (2021), about Mexico City.
Jutta Koether: 4 the TeamBy Alfred Mac Adam
These small paintings, made between 1983 and 1987, are superb. Their role in Koethers oeuvre is reminiscent of Eva Hesses expressionistic spectre paintings of 1960 in that they also show the artist taking control of an Expressionistic style reminiscent of Soutines still lives or even Philip Gustons figural paintingsbut a style she will jettison.
Julian Schnabel: The Patch of Blue the Prisoner Calls the SkyBy Alfred Mac Adam
Out-of-context quotation in art and architecture is characteristic of the postmodern condition, but Schnabels relationship with antecedents is complex. Here, he alters a line to fit his intentions, but elsewhere he shows himself to be a past master of painterly parody.
Marley Freeman: take careBy Alfred Mac Adam
Marley Freeman is breaking loose from herself. Not to worry; even as she moves forward, she, like Janus, keeps an eye on the past. In this, her second solo show with Karma (her first was in 2020), she is clearly shredding her ties to figuration, but not entirely or absolutely: several of the smaller works here contain human figures and faces reminiscent of her 2020 work.
New York: 1962–1964By Alfred Mac Adam
1962–1964 manages to encapsulate the artistic explosion taking place in New York in the early sixties in art, in dance, and in poetry.
Cora Cohen: Works from the 1980sBy Alfred Mac Adam
Cora Cohen: Works from the 1980s is a time capsule, and like all time capsules it is an enigma. Time capsules are supposed to provide people of the future a sample of things typical of the moment when they are buried. Which raises the critical issue of perspective: are we to understand these eight glorious pieces according to what we think they meant thirty-five years ago, or should we understand them according to what they say to us today? Even if we lived through them, the 1980s are as irrecoverable as the 1880s: an abyss separates us from that decade even if human timememorymay trick us into thinking we actually know that remote moment perfectly.
Victor Boullet: WERKK.WERKK.LIVERPOOL.PAINTING.By Alfred Mac Adam
Reilly Davidson has packed thirty-six Victor Boullet (b. 1969, Norway) paintings into the Lubov gallery: their psychological impact on the unprepared visitor almost warrants a warning label because their static, mundane violence leaves us bewildered.
less: minimalism in the 1960sBy Alfred Mac Adam
The show currently on view at Acquavella Galleries, which was guided into existence by Michael Findlay, enables us to see another side of Minimalism. The exhibition assembles some nineteen pieces by nineteen different artists, all working on a scale which, if not exactly domestic, enables us to appreciate individual works in all their playfulness and humor.
Stefan Bondell: Dark MarksBy Alfred Mac Adam
Stefan Bondell inhabits a unique niche in the herky-jerky continuum of figurative painting in the United States. To find his antecedents, we must jump back many generations and sweep the dust-off names like Reginald Marsh (1898-1904) and Paul Cadmus (1904-1999). Paintings such as Marshs rendition of a Coney Island Sideshow (1930) or his 1929 frieze-like etching of a breadline, or Cadmuss 1936 Public Dock all rise to mind when viewing Bondells pictures. To those names we would add German Expressionists like George Grosz and Max Beckmann who lived here, and Mexican muralists like Diego Rivera and David Alfaro Siqueiros whose presence in the United States brought socially critical art on a grand scale into American culture.
Robert Swain: The Perception of ColorBy Alfred Mac Adam
Robert Swains current exhibition The Perception of Color lets ten paintings (please excuse the mixed metaphor) do the talking, and their rhetoric makes a more convincing argument than any essay.
Pat Adams: Large PaintingsBy Alfred Mac Adam
To refer to Pat Adams as a grand and venerable presence in American painting is merely to state the obvious. Born in 1928, she has had, since 1954, show after show right up until today. She is a national treasure and ought to be regarded as such. But it is not her age, the number of her shows, or the many institutions that proudly display her art that matter. Our concern should be the quality of her work, her dedication, and her artistic genius. This show is a superb opportunity to focus on what makes her great.
Chakaia Booker: Public OpinionBy Alfred Mac Adam
Chakaia Booker is a busy artist. On any given workday she paints, sculpts, and makes printsseemingly all at the same time. Examples of all three media are crammed into the David Nolan Gallery for this astonishing show of work produced between 2002 and 2023 that clearly establishes Booker as one of the major artists of our time.
Sarah Sze: TimelapseBy Alfred Mac Adam
Sarah Sze is simultaneously more grandiose and more modest than Borges. He wants to use words to depict seeing the entire universe as a simultaneity; she wants to use paint, objects, video, and the entire New York Guggenheim to depict her translation of her artistic vision into something palpable.
Off the WallBy Alfred Mac Adam
Color experimentation brings together the seven very different artists in this sparkling virtual group show. Sequestered in the confines of apartments and houses, where we see the same colors day after day, we crave color permutations, which is exactly what this lively mix of multi-generational colorists provides.
Alvaro BarringtonBy Alfred Mac Adam
Alvaro Barrington is all over the place. Literally. Hes out east, at Karma on East 2nd Street and up north at Anton Kern on 55th Street. And if these geographic extremes of the Manhattan art world arent enough, theres the artist himself…
Rackstraw Downes: Paintings & DrawingsBy Alfred Mac Adam
“So I said to the person I was with, ‘You know I think I’d like to paint the whole world on a postcard,’ and in a funny way, though I never thought about that remark until years later, that was what I did, in a way.”
(Nothing but) FlowersBy Alfred Mac Adam
The title of this spectacular show of 59 artists should be: These Are Not Flowers. Only Magrittes admonition keeps us from confusing nature and art, though of course such confusion is the inevitable result of this floral avalanche. When do flowers cease to be nature and become art?
Genieve Figgis: Immortal ReflectionBy Alfred Mac Adam
For years now, Genieve Figgis has been playing—with astonishing success—the double game of caricature. A double game because caricature involves simultaneously viewing Figgis’s paintings and viewing in the mind’s eye the things she mocks.
Cristina BanBan: Del LlantoBy Alfred Mac Adam
Cristina BanBans Del Llanto is the perfect answer to the tedious, inevitable question, And what have you been doing during the pandemic? Shes been mighty busy, so much so that shes filled two venues, 1969 Gallery in Tribeca and albertz benda in Chelsea, with her efforts: over 30 works in oil, acrylic, pastel, and charcoal.
Tacita Dean: The Dante Project • One Hundred and Fifty Years of Painting • Pan Amicus • Significant Form • Monet Hates MeBy Alfred Mac Adam
Tacita Deans current show at Marian Goodman is not your ordinary gallery show. In fact, Dean has subtly revolutionized the very concept. The presentation of an artists work at a given moment can produce a species of tunnel vision because the individual pieces, often created at the same time, frequently bear such a resemblance to one another that they blend together.
By Alfred Mac Adam
I long and seek after
In a lost play by Sophocles mentioned by Aristotle in the Poetics, the princess Philomela, having been raped and maimed, can only express the horror of what has happened by weaving a tapestry.
Painting the EssentialBy Alfred Mac Adam
Chris Martin has brought together fifteen painters, including himself, that are united by timethe eightiesand placedowntown Manhattan and Brooklynbut resolutely different in style. This is a marvelous show that summarizes the American artistic sensibility of our times: a house decidedly divided against itself.
Unnatural Nature: Post-Pop LandscapesBy Alfred Mac Adam
The human appetite for landscape paintings is apparently infinite, and this show of no fewer than twenty-eight artists in its New York version (there was a second edition in Palm Beach, which like this one was curated by Todd Bradway) emulates that infinity. How easy it would be to get lost in all these painted forests!
On-Site: Major Paintings by Rackstraw Downes & Stanley LewisBy Alfred Mac Adam
In a bygone age of college football, Doc Blanchard Mr. Inside, and Glenn Davis Mr. Outside made headlines for the West Point Military Academy team winning several championships with their backfield game, running the ball on the inside and carrying it on the outside. Theyve now been replaced by a couple of landscape painters: Stanley Lewis on the inside and Rackstraw Downes on the outside. Both are plein-air artists; together, they take the landscape tradition in a new direction. Unlike the Hudson River School painters, they are not consecrating a virginal New World landscape, nor are they following the lead of Corot, creating beautifully rendered but imaginary places. They do not seek the picturesque, or endeavor to subjugate wild nature to artistic will. These two find placesor perhaps the places find themin nature overtaken by human beings, devoid of the picturesque, and that no one, most certainly, would ever call virginal.
Susan Rothenberg: On Both Sides of My LineBy Alfred Mac Adam
Gray New York has rounded up 10 of Susan Rothenbergs horses, all produced between 1974 and 1979. This is a rodeo of a very special kind: there are no riders as in a Marino Marini sculpture, no bronco busters, no human figures at all to distract us from the presence of the horses.
Julian Schnabel: Predominately Natural Forms, Mexico, 2022By Alfred Mac Adam
Julian Schnabels inventive exuberance shows no signs of flagging. Whether harvesting the awnings from the stands of fruit vendors in Troncones, Mexico, where these paintings were made, and transforming the irregular shapes into spectacularly asymmetrical shaped canvases, or, as here, using velvet as his surface, he finds ways to impose his abstract will on whatever medium he chooses.
Karin Davie: To Boldly Go Where No Mans Gone BeforeBy Alfred Mac Adam
Karin Davie is adept at ironic sleight-of-hand: she simultaneously tricks us and shows how her hocus-pocus works. In the title of this double show, she deliberately apocopates Captain Kirks sententious prelude in the voiceover for the original Star Trek series: to boldly go where no man has gone before! Her version is more conversational or vernacular, but it also calls attention to the irony of a womans appropriation of it.
Abby Leigh: Sledgehammer PaintingsBy Alfred Mac Adam
Abby Leigh’s visible work seduces with subtle, unassuming color and flashes of silvery metal. We look at these paintings, and it is as if we were peering into a microscope at a specimen displayed on a slide.
Walter Robinson: Salad, Candles, & MoneyBy Alfred Mac Adam
Walter Robinson’s sardonic eye flits from one banality to another, fusing an Existentialist will to create meaning with a Pop delight in the things of this world.
Lesley VanceBy Alfred Mac Adam
Lesley Vance swirls her powerful colors over the canvas until she dominates the entire surface. Horror vacui or will-to power? Probably equal doses of both, but the utter assertiveness of her ribbons of color in these nine oils on canvas mark her as a conquistador.
Josephine Halvorson: On the GroundBy Alfred Mac Adam
A hasty visitor to Sikkema Jenkins might easily overlook Josephine Halvorsons 11 gouaches, tucked away in the back gallery. That sin of omission would be unforgivable and a source of eternal regret, because these outstanding paintings take landscape painting as a genre in a new direction, focusing on the insignificant rather than the infinite.
Interiors: hello from the living roomBy Alfred Mac Adam
The COVID epidemic has made us acutely aware of interior spaces and their metamorphosis from living space into working and recreational spaces. But this fascinating show also reminds us that these multi-use spaces are saturated with sin.
Chaim Soutine: FleshBy Alfred Mac Adam
The title of this rich, tightly focused show of thirty or so paintings is somewhat misleading. “Flesh” could imply sexuality or sensuality, a Rubensesque or Boucher-like delight in the human body. But such corporeal delights could not be further from Soutine’s relationship with formerly living animals. No other artist has taken nature morte, the French term for still life, quite as literally, reminding us that once life has been drained from a living organism, it becomes inanimate—that is, lifeless, it becomes a thing. No other artist enacts the transformation of matter into art with as much ironic self-awareness as Chaim Soutine (1893–1943).
Joseph Elmer YoakumBy Alfred Mac Adam
The 60 works on paper by Joseph Elmer Yoakum (18901972) assembled here automatically make us wonder who this bizarre artist was. Yoakum's picaresque life and his late embrace of an artistic vocation call to mind traditional myths that assume artists are born, not made.
Valerie Jaudon: PrepositionsBy Alfred Mac Adam
The titles of Jaudons 11 paintings refer explicitly to rhythmically organized soundmusic. But terms like Aeolian (2017) and Lydian (2019) are strange to most of us and require a dictionary for elucidation. Even after we decipher the words, we wonder how we spectators are supposed to make the leap from visual experience to the music these titles ask us to hear?
Eric Fischl: Towards the End of an Astonishing Beauty: An Elegy to Sag Harbor, and thus AmericaBy Alfred Mac Adam
In the case of Eric Fischl, psychological means a painterly style works through a mental Gestalt process: instead of our eye completing a broken line as it would in a Gestalt experiment, it is our minds that complete Fischls works.
Elise Ansel: Time PresentBy Alfred Mac Adam
Ansel begins by reading the past, finding elements that interest her, and recombining them. Her eye and her camera wander over paintings in real, virtual, and recalled museums until something tells her to stop.
Emilie Stark-Menneg: Strawberry MoonBy Alfred Mac Adam
Emilie Stark-Menneg is a psychological artist, but to call her one is to do her a disservice. Eric Fischl, for instance, presents us with fraught moments in the lives of his subjects, fragments of a narrative, but Stark-Menneg sets aside stories in favor of psychic icons of an autobiographical nature.
Martin Kippenberger: Paintings 19841996By Alfred Mac Adam
Missing are the drunken streetlamps, the impromptu metro entrances, and other sculptural objects, but what we do have makes us realize that each piece has infinite possibilities. In other words, these eight paintings are a valid sample of Kippenberger at his outrageous, parodic best.
Helen Frankenthaler and Robert Motherwell: The Art of MarriageBy Alfred Mac Adam
Humor is not a matter we associate with great artists, but it is with these star-crossed lovers, both dedicated body and soul to their craft but with the good sense to periodically stop making sense.
cart, horse, cartBy Alfred Mac Adam
This exhibition proves, first, that nowadays there is no down time in the art world and, second, that abstraction is not only not dead but has also risen phoenix-like to new heights in the twenty-first century.
Jane Freilicher: AbstractionsBy Alfred Mac Adam
A curatorial tour-de-force combining resources from the artists estate (represented by the Kasmin Gallery), private collections, and at least one public institution, the Delaware Art Museum, these twelve oils show a painter in her mid-thirties: confident, boldthe sixty by seventy-inch canvases attest to that boldnessunafraid to create work that pushes the limit of domestic-scale art.
Aleksandar Duravcevic: YOUTHBy Alfred Mac Adam
Most of the works in Youth have a reflective quality that transforms visitors into potential avatars of Narcissus.
Wayne Thiebaud: Mountains 19652019By Alfred Mac Adam
These mountains embody the most sensuous aspects of the beautiful, as Thiebaud is a fundamentally erotic artist whose work arouses the viewers appetites.
Hermann Nitsch: Bayreuth StoriesBy Alfred Mac Adam
Whether real or acrylic, blood is Nitschs preferred way to express the sublime, which the artist construes very much in Edmund Burkes sense, as a spectacle that astonishes us, freezes us mentally and physically, and infuses in us a touch of horror.
By Alfred Mac Adam
Coronation of Sesostris & In Beauty It Is Finished: Drawings 1951-2008
Scheduled to coincide with what would have been Cy Twombly’s ninetieth birthday, Gagosian’s vast two-venue exhibition is an asymmetrical two-headed monster.
By Alfred Mac Adam
Experiments in Drawing
This concise, dazzling show of sixteen drawings (primarily landscapes) corrects this view, establishing Gainsborough as the progenitor of an English landscape tradition running from Constable to Turner and, ultimately, David Hockney.
Rackstraw Downes: DrawingsBy Alfred Mac Adam
There are two Rackstraw Downes in this remarkable show of 33 drawings and one oil on canvas. The range is huge, from 1975 until 2020, but with the bulk of the drawings made in 2020. Not exactly a retrospective, but enough of one for us to see two discrete phases in his career: his mature style and his late style.
Michael Goldberg End to End: The 1950s & 2000sBy Alfred Mac Adam
Thirty-three works, fifty-seven years of Michael Goldberg’s long and rich artistic career. The alpha and the omega of his artistic life: nine paintings from the 1950s (1950-1959) and twenty-four from this century, from 2000 until 2007, the year of his death.
Jordan Belson: LandscapesBy Alfred Mac Adam
After his death in 2011, Jordan Belson underwent a metamorphosis.
By Alfred Mac Adam
Much of Corrigan’s work until now has been charged with narrative, her paintings often episodes from untold tales she invited viewers to invent and complete. In these eighteen works, she attenuates narrative to focus on specific scenes from her forest-garden borderland.
William Hogarth: Cruelty and HumorBy Alfred Mac Adam
In a marginal note, William Hogarth (16971764) summarizes his artistic program: to treat my subjects as a dramatic writer, my picture was my stage.
Sol LeWitt: Wall Drawings & StructuresBy Alfred Mac Adam
What should make you ecstatic is the fact that you are becoming part of the recurring enactment of LeWitts concept of art: the translation of a concept born in his mind into, simultaneously, images and words.
Joe Zucker: 100-Foot-Long Piece, 1968-1969By Alfred Mac Adam
Let's get into Joe Zucker's time machine. 100-Foot-Long Piece (1968-1969) is our point of departure, but Zucker brings us up to date with nine acrylic-cotton pieces from 2019. The show is not exactly a retrospective, but enough of one: nine gestural drawings in India ink from 1964 and two vitrines stuffed with miscellanea, including Zucker's high school diploma, a photo of him playing varsity basketball, and a host of gallery announcements and posters capture his chameleon nature.
John Currin: MemorialBy Alfred Mac Adam
With the seven oil paintings in Memorial, John Currin embraces Mannerism in all its twisting, elongated distortion.
Estamos Bien: La Trienal 20/21By Alfred Mac Adam
Curators Rodrigo Moura, Susanna V. Temkin, and Elia Alba have composed a wild mélange of Latinx art, one that connects the viewer directly to the complexities of Latinx heritage in the context of the United States.
Anselm Kiefer: ExodusBy Alfred Mac Adam
These are the works of a mature artist, perhaps in the most ominous sense: memories (an aid and a plague), emblems of despair (destroyed buildings), but despair mitigated by a will we find in Samuel Becketts I cant go on. Ill go on.
Margrit Lewczuk: AngelsBy Alfred Mac Adam
Margrit Lewczuk has, as they say, a thing for angels. She has summoned 18 of them for this show, along with two paintings of birds and four of wings: a veritable heavenly host.
Ansel Krut: Back to Back BalloonsBy Alfred Mac Adam
Like his fellow South Africans William Kentridge and Marlene Dumas, Ansel Krut might be defined as an expressionist of the latter day. Where Kentridge is theatrical and Dumas passionate, Krut seems zany, but in fact he is dead serious and addresses a wide range of artistic and social issues in these 30 acrylics and oils, all painted between 2017 and 2018.
Georg Baselitz: Six Decades of DrawingBy Alfred Mac Adam
If entelechy is the process by which something becomes what nature intended it to bethe fertilized egg becomes the human being, the acorn the oak treethen Georg Baselitz leapfrogged it, springing, like Athena, fully grown from his own forehead.
By Alfred Mac Adam
There is an unstable mix of elements in Sparks’s work. On the one hand, a magic component—not the magic of sleight-of-hand or hat tricks, but the magic of religious belief, the magic of the fetish—the object that possesses obsessive power of some kind.
Jasper Johns: Recent Paintings & Works on PaperBy Alfred Mac Adam
This old dog can teach you more tricks than you can ever learn. Jasper Johns (b. May 15, 1930) fills Matthew Marks's gallery with 37 works and a 24-piece suite of drawings in ink on paper or plastic.
Cy TwomblyBy Alfred Mac Adam
Never forgotten, Cy Twombly is currently in vogue, with a show at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston and this spectacular panoply of paintings, sculpture, and works on paper at Gagosian on Madison Avenue. The differences between the two shows are worth noting: in Boston you can see Twomblys works in conjunction with ancient artifacts, both those belonging to the museum and others belonging to Twombly, himself an inveterate collector of antiquities.
Cross-cutsBy Alfred Mac Adam
Nara Roesler Gallery inaugurates the opening of its new Chelsea space with the first installment of an ambitious program: to present a full panorama of Brazilian art. Cross-cuts is curated by the Venezuelan poet and art critic Luis Pérez-Oramas, and delivers the work of nine revelatory artists, seven of whom are currently practicing.
Tadaaki KuwayamaBy Alfred Mac Adam
We see Tadaaki Kuwayamas long career writ small, from 1960 until 2022. Were missing work from the 1970s, but what we have is more than satisfying, again to put it pedantically, pars pro toto, the part that stands in for the whole. So, nothing like a retrospective, but enough of a retrospective for us to construct an artistic biography.
James Hyde: Western Painting—MagnascoBy Alfred Mac Adam
In Western Painting--Magnasco James Hyde makes a brilliant case for abstraction—as long as we understand what he means by that idea.
Dana Schutz: Imagine Me and YouBy Alfred Mac Adam
Dana Schutz apparently found the title for this splendid show in the Turtles’ 1967 saccharine hymn to togetherness of the same name. No one is likely to become enraged over this appropriation. But it reminds us of the absurdity entailed in the very idea of appropriation, that somehow subjects are the exclusive property of some artists but not others.
Marco Maggi: Initialism (From Obscurantism to Enlightenment)By Alfred Mac Adam
Marco Maggi has brought about the improbable union of Plato and Stéphane Mallarmé. Specifically, the marriage of Plato's allegory of the cave in the Republic and Mallarmé's Un coup des dés jamais n'abolira le hasard, his polyphonic text, meant to be read simultaneously at several levels in order to be understood.
Suzan Frecon: oil paintingsBy Alfred Mac Adam
With the nine oil paintings currently on view at David Zwirner, Suzan Frecon moves into what we might call the classical phase of her career: the moment when she marshals, with supreme ease, every aspect of her previous work into a grand summary.
Thornton Willis: Improvisational StructuresBy Alfred Mac Adam
Elusive and unwilling to fix himself in a single modality, Willis always brings to mind a host of other painters, but in the last analysis, he is only like himself.
Chloe Wise: Thank You For The Nice FireBy Alfred Mac Adam
We live, Wise says, in a new edition of W.H. Audens The Age of Anxiety (1947), where the intimate relationships we crave may be dangerous traps, where what we eat to stay alive may poison us.
Holly Coulis: Eyes and YousBy Alfred Mac Adam
Holly Couliss brilliant, punning title perfectly captures the intellectual conceit that drives her equally brilliant show. Her work, picking up on the eyes in the title, has always been a matter of focus. How, in her earlier paintings, to perceive a still life: should the size of objects in a painting be determined by reality or should size have nothing to do with representational verisimilitude?
Richard SerraBy Alfred Mac Adam
The now rain-streaked poster for this dual show, still visible on 10th Avenue, is a photograph of Richard Serra watching as a huge claw lifts his work: a red hot, 10-foot-high solid steel cylinder.
By Alfred Mac Adam
Myths & Mortals
Marlene Dumas has had every accolade, every apotheosis a living artist could want. She could easily rest on her laurels but instead trades her laurels for myrtle, the evergreen with white flowers sacred to Venus. Which is to say, she focuses on the erotic, specifically female love.
Goya’s Graphic ImaginationBy Alfred Mac Adam
Born in 1746 and died 1828 at the age of 82, Goya made nearly five decades of drawings and etchings, assembled here, that constitute his artistic alter ego, where self-awareness and intention could yield to emotion.
Eugène Delacroix at the Metropolitan Museum of ArtBy Alfred Mac Adam
At this moment, the Metropolitan Museum of Art contains enough work by Eugène Delacroix (1798 – 1863) to keep you busy for several lifetimes.
Francis Bacon: Faces & FiguresBy Alfred Mac Adam
There are no biomorphic figures, no screaming popesonly explorations of figures within the confines of pictorial space. But that self-imposed limitation is a tremendous opportunity to look closely at superb examples of Bacons work.
Wood Works: Raw, Cut, Carved, CoveredBy Alfred Mac Adam
Works by 20 artists are included in this wood-themed show.
Guillermo Kuitca: Graphite Paintings from The Tablada Suite (1992) and Poema Pedagógico (1996)By Alfred Mac Adam
The Mexican novelist Carlos Fuentes once quipped, We Mexicans, you know, descend from the Aztecs. The Argentines, well, they descend from boats. A facetious thought with serious consequences for the eight graphite paintings from the Tablada Suite and Poema Pedagógico, series by Guillermo Kuitca, currently on view at Sperone Westwater. Mexicans can feel autochthonous, linked to their land by blood, but Argentines, a nation of immigrants like the United States, rarely have the same experience. Where Americans generally feel bonded by their Constitution, a document that holds their nation together, that commonality, if it exists in Argentina, is attenuated by political and economic catastrophe.
Loló SoldevillaBy Alfred Mac Adam
The work brings into focus another aspect of the Concrete aesthetic: art as game with fixed rules within a fixed space, but a game in which the viewer participates. From a biographical perspective this work also constitutes an irony: with the triumph of the Cuban Revolution in 1959, Soldevillas work was deemed counterrevolutionary and she was obliged to discontinue her artistic practice and work in a factory making wooden toys for children.
Carl AndreBy Alfred Mac Adam
Brilliantly curated, this succinct show of 21 works created between 1972 and 2021 manages to present Carl Andre in three modes. Simultaneously monumental and intimate, these pieces provide a nuanced view of an artist all-too-easily consigned to Minimalism and left there in splendid but intellectually mute isolation.
Susan RothenbergBy Alfred Mac Adam
As in all her works, the key element is creative destruction, the hands that destroy are also the hands that make. This may bring us closer to Rothenbergs artistic essence: no creation takes place without destruction. Wherever we look in Sperone Westwaters gallery, we find disjecta membra, the fragments of an aesthetic cataclysm.
Alexis Rockman: Lost Cargo: WatercolorsBy Alfred Mac Adam
Alexis Rockman’s medium for the 22 marine and submarine works currently on view at Sperone Westwaterwatercolor and acrylic on paperis paradoxical: watercolors are notoriously susceptible to moisture while acrylic paint, though water soluble, is waterproof when dry. So, the paintings are ephemeral and permanent at the same time, like nature itself.
GiacomettiBy Alfred Mac Adam
The two hundred or so objects assembled in this superb show—sculptures, paintings, and drawings, many of which have never been shown before—enable us finally to set aside the monstrous obfuscation of Giacometti’s oeuvre by philosophers and critics (Jean-Paul Sartre especially) who projected their ideology or self-image onto him and his work, and see him in the company of Egyptian, Greek, and African painting and sculpture, as well as the work of Brâncusi, de Chirico, and Cézanne.
Alberto Giacometti: GiacomettiBy Alfred Mac Adam
The two hundred or so objects assembled in this superb show—sculptures, paintings, and drawings, many of which have never been shown before—enable us finally to set aside the monstrous obfuscation of Giacometti’s oeuvre by philosophers and critics (Jean-Paul Sartre especially).
Jacob El Hanani: Recent Works on CanvasBy Alfred Mac Adam
Jacob El Hananis Recent Works on Canvas, through a combination of large scale and virtually microscopic images, leaves us transfixed.
By Alfred Mac Adam
I'm Made of Milk
Kate Groobey has rehabilitated the zany. Not that she is personally zany or that her wonderful large-scale paintings are zany, but that she has brought back to artistic life the zany, the clown, the zanni or Gianni or Giovanni of the Commedia dell'Arte.
Charles Burchfield: SolitudeBy Alfred Mac Adam
If naming an object kills it, looking directly at a bewitching scene, even in memory, kills it.
Hélio Oiticica: Spatial Relief and Drawings 1955 - 59By Alfred Mac Adam
Hélio Oiticica (1937 – 1980) is a now integral part of the New York art scene, in large measure thanks to his 2017 retrospective at the Whitney, To Organize Delirium, which provided New Yorkers with an opportunity to experience him in full. His posthumous apotheosis eclipses anything he experienced in life, which is why the tight chronological focus of the exhibition at Galerie Lelong, from 1955 to 1959, is so important: it takes us back to Oiticica's artistic origins.
Diego Gerard Morrison’s Myth of PterygiumBy Alfred Mac Adam
According to the jacket blurbs, Myth of Pterygium is a novel. It isnt.