Adam Szymczyk

  • Cranes lift Marta Minujín’s Partenón de libros prohibidos (Parthenon of Banned Books), 1983, Avenida 9 de Julio, Buenos Aires, December 24, 1983.

    Documenta 14

    THIS YEAR, the vaunted quinquennial Documenta 14 will take place in two cities, opening in Athens on April 8 and in Kassel on June 10. Artistic director Adam Szymczyk—who is collaborating with an extensive team that includes curators Pierre Bal-Blanc, Hendrik Folkerts, Candice Hopkins, Bonaventure Soh Bejeng Ndikung, Hila Peleg, Dieter Roelstraete, and Monika Szewczyk—sat down with Artforum editor Michelle Kuo to discuss the broad range of sites, forms, and ideas at play, from the democratic ideals of classical antiquity to the crisis of contemporary austerity.

    MICHELLE KUO: Athens was

  • Julian Schnabel, Ornamental Despair (Painting for Ian Curtis), 1980, oil on velvet, 7' 6 1/8“ x 14' 1/2”.

    “The Old, the New, the Different”

    ANY NEW EXHIBITION at the Kunsthalle Bern may boast of an array of impressive ancestors: from Harald Szeemann’s epochal “When Attitudes Become Form” in 1969 to the 1992 Michael Asher intervention, commissioned by Ulrich Loock, in which all the radiators from the building were relocated to the lobby, to “The Idea of Africa (re-invented)” (2010–11), a trio of politically invested projects organized by Philippe Pirotte. An institution with no permanent display, the kunsthalle has no liquid capital beyond these memories and the continually changing discourse around them. For the venue’s curators,

  • Alina Szapocznikow, Madonna of Krużlowa (Motherhood), 1969, pigmented polyester resin, photographs, gauze, 16 1/2 x 20 1/2 x 7".


    IT WAS THE MID-1980S, a bleak, depressed era in post-martial-law Poland, when I first saw Alina Szapocznikow’s 1967 sculpture Le Voyage (Journey) at Muzeum Sztuki in Lodz. Strolling pretty much alone through the museum’s galleries, I came upon it suddenly: a slender waxy-white nude that seemed to recline in the air. Perched on a tiny metal plinth and leaning back at a steep angle, improbably balanced between standing and falling, it denied gravity with the ease of a specter. Rounded pads of blue-green polyester covered the figure’s eyes like the lenses of oversize sunglasses, conveying hippie-era