Alina Szapocznikow’s (1926 73) mutilated sculptures of human figures are visually assaulting. The twelve works on view at Andrea Rosen Gallery, from the 1960s and ’70s, are characterized by obscene bodily imagery that conjures gut-wrenching torture, human suffering, eroticism, and death.
A Constellation challenges us to reflect on contemporary and historical politics of racial inclusion versus exclusion. It is remarkable not only for its diverse collection of artists and media, but because it embodies such a large scope of political themes. As we navigate through painting, photography, sculpture, large-scale, small-scale, and mixed-media works, we are confronted with subjects of race, identity, culture, gender, and economic inequality.
“When he told me that I was made for his use, made to obey his command in every thing [ ] whose will must and should surrender to his, never before had my puny arm felt half so strong,” wrote Harriet Jacobs on her body as slave-owner’s property, as if she were perfectly manufactured for the man who owned it.
If criticism manifests most strongly in the face of what is meant to move us forward as a species, one can only imagine what curator John Cheim was expecting for the onset of his most recent exhibition, The Female Gaze, Part II: Women Look at Men.
Though the intuition is the seed of the senses, intuition lies behind the need to find meaning through logic.
David Hammons is still an anomaly with a gift for turning social absurdities into witticism.
In 2005, Andrea Fraser wrote that, whether one’s name is attached to an institution or not, anyone associated with the art world is, by default, a participant in the institution; her statement amounted to an invocation to participate in repairing a broken system.