Ideas and influences: Mike Cloud

Rather than parse the differences among us, Mike Cloud’s new paintings address the one experience we all have in common regardless of race, gender, ethnicity, wealth, or nationality: impending death. For his solo show at Thomas Erben, on view through November 2, Cloud has used stretcher bars, belts, fabrics, paint, and other materials to create … read more… “Ideas and influences: Mike Cloud”

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William Powhida’s inquisition

Contributed by Jonathan Stevenson / For a while it looked as though William Powhida might be painting himself into an existential corner. His mission was to sensitize his audience to the hypocritical churn of the art market – to the reality that what made producing something putatively nobler and loftier than money viable was in fact … read more… “William Powhida’s inquisition”

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Neue Galerie’s “degenerate” art and Babylon Berlin

Contributed by Jonathan Stevenson / Neue Galerie’s compellingly incisive exhibition, titled “Eclipse of the Sun: Art of the Weimar Republic” and anchored by Georg Grosz’s 1926 painting Eclipse of the Sun, yields an ominously resonant tableau of a post-World War I Germany saturated with angst. Grosz’s busy, quizzical work depicts an aloof and corrupt Paul … read more… “Neue Galerie’s “degenerate” art and Babylon Berlin”

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Catalogue essay: Paul Pieroni on Peter Halley’s 1980s painting

The aim of this text, which was originally published as “Facts are Useless in Emergencies” in Peter Halley: Paintings of the 1980s The Catalogue Raisonne, is to provide an in-depth analysis of Peter Halley’s painting as it emerged during the 1980s. I engage Halley’s theoretical writing—which extends his visual language—while also considering the critical reception … read more… “Catalogue essay: Paul Pieroni on Peter Halley’s 1980s painting”

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Art and Film: Argentina’s haunting precedent

Contributed by Jonathan Stevenson / Argentina’s decade-long “dirty war” (1974–83) during which a right-wing military junta “disappeared” about 30,000 left-wing dissidents – that is, executed them without acknowledgement of their deaths – ended over 35 years ago. Yet Argentina’s outstanding contemporary filmmakers continue to revisit the dirty war. In 2009, there was Juan José Campanella’s … read more… “Art and Film: Argentina’s haunting precedent”

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Peter Krashes: Summer in the city

Contributed by Sharon Butler / Spending summer in the city means that each weekend, in neighborhoods far and near, street traffic is rerouted to make way for lively festivals featuring food, music, facepainting, games, dancing, and more. Peter Krashes, a political organizer in Prospect Heights, makes paintings based on snapshots he takes during these neighborhood festivals. The gouache-on-paper … read more… “Peter Krashes: Summer in the city”

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Björn Meyer-Ebrecht: Spontaneity rising

Contributed by Sharon Butler / Contemplating Gerrit Rietveld’s furniture, especially the pieces he made from crates, Björn Meyer-Ebrecht realized that utilitarian furniture can be sculpture, and that sculpture in turn can serve as a utilitarian object. He explores this idea in a thoughtful and lively new show at Owen James Gallery in Soho. A series … read more… “Björn Meyer-Ebrecht: Spontaneity rising”

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Farley Aguilar’s screamingly urgent figurative paintings

Contributed by Sharon Butler / Farley Aguilar’s paintings, on view at Lyles & King, are based on vintage photographs of 1920s and ‘30s seaside beauty pageants and images of female Nazi collaborators having their heads shaved after World War II. The contrast is jarring at first but fits into an insightfully integrated sense of powerlessness … read more… “Farley Aguilar’s screamingly urgent figurative paintings”

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Carter Ratcliff: Art in the age of Trump

Contributed by Carter Ratcliff / Let’s begin with a painting—not sure it’s a work of art—that could have been painted only now, during Trump’s presidency. This is The Republican Club, a group portrait of selected Republican presidents, by Andy Thomas.  Hanging now in the White House, it appeared behind Trump during a recent television interview. Though … read more… “Carter Ratcliff: Art in the age of Trump”

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Warhol at the Whitney: A provocateur for all seasons

Contributed by Jonathan Stevenson / There are certainly strong generational reasons for the Whitney to mount “Andy Warhol – From A to B and Back Again,” its penetrating current retrospective. It goes almost without saying that Warhol changed art history by melding the commercial and the “fine,” and, in his energized aesthetic embrace of the whole … read more… “Warhol at the Whitney: A provocateur for all seasons”

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