Alpesh Kantilal Patel

  • Aranguren & Gallegos's preliminary rendering of the new Institute of Contemporary Art, Miami, in the Design District. Photo: Aranguren & Gallegos.
    slant November 30, 2015

    On the Ground: Miami

    SOUTH FLORIDA has always been friendly to topless beachgoers. This past year, though, the city’s art museums gave new meaning to being topless in Miami. Four were without directors at some point: the Institute of Contemporary Art, Miami (ICA Miami); the Pérez Art Museum Miami (PAMM); the Patricia & Phillip Frost Museum; and the Wolfsonian-Florida International University Museum. All of the positions have now been filled, but it will be several years before it’s clear how the newbies’ visions will shape programming. Meanwhile, the Bass Museum of Art closed for renovations in mid-May (although it

  • Bik Van der Pol, Speechless (detail), 2015, mixed media, dimensions variable.
    picks November 05, 2015

    Bik Van der Pol

    Reports emerged in early 2015 that Florida government officials had unofficially banned state employees from using phrases such as “climate change” and “global warming” or words such as “sustainability” in their communications. Bik Van der Pol, the Rotterdam-based artistic team of Liesbeth Bik and Jos Van der Pol, took this curious censure, which the government denies, as a partial point of departure for their installation Speechless, 2015, the result of a residency at PAMM.

    The work consists of a custom-made aviary, the walls of which contain letters that if unscrambled spell out the aforementioned

  • Subodh Gupta, What does the room encompass that is not in the city?, 2014, found boat, found objects, found utensils, fabric, steel, found fishing net, bamboo, rope, plastic pipe, dimensions variable.
    picks May 29, 2015

    “After Midnight: Indian Modernism to Contemporary India, 1947/1997”

    As suggested in the exhibition’s title, “After Midnight: Indian Modernism to Contemporary India, 1947/1997” launches a conversation between two discrete time periods. Curated by Dr. Arshiya Lokhandwala, the presentation begins with paintings from the era following India’s independence from Britain, primarily by those involved in the seminal Progressive Artists’ Group that jumpstarted modernism in India. These artists’ interest in diverse media beyond painting—output that is rarely exhibited—is worth noting. See F. N. Souza, who used diluted printer’s ink and magazine paper to create what he

  • Lyle Ashton Harris, Jenny and Cathy, Sunset Junction Street Fair, Los Angeles, Circa Early 1990s, 2015, chromogenic print, 15 x 20 1/2".
    interviews May 22, 2015

    Lyle Ashton Harris

    Lyle Ashton Harris’s current solo exhibition at Miami’s David Castillo Gallery features a series of unstaged pictures from his archive of Ektachrome slides from the past twenty-five years. As a curator, he recently cocurated—with Robert Storr and Peter Benson Miller—the group show “Nero su Bianco” (Black on White), which examines radical shifts in perceptions of African identity, subjectivity, and agency. It will be on view at the American Academy in Rome from May 25, 2015, through July 19, 2015. The exhibition at David Castillo Gallery, which Harris discusses below, is on view through May 30,

  • Tameka Norris, Meka Jones: How She Got Good, 2014, mixed media, dimensions variable.
    picks March 13, 2015

    Tameka Norris

    The centerpiece of Tameka Norris’s solo exhibition is the eighty-minute-film Meka Jean: How She Got Good, 2014. In it, Norris plays the eponymous character, an African American woman who hopes to become a singer and painter, against the backdrop of a similarly aspirational post-Katrina New Orleans. Based on Norris’s own life, the film is less a linear narrative than a series of vignettes, in which her alter ego embodies an array of characters: the confident artist, the overtly sexualized woman, the hip-hop groupie, and the hysterical victim, to name a few.

    Also on view, her short video Recovery

  • Daniel Arsham, Welcome to the Future, 2014, volcanic ash, steel, obsidian, and rose quartz, dimensions variable.
    picks January 06, 2015

    Daniel Arsham

    For his latest site-specific installation, Daniel Arsham dug a large, circular trench in this gallery’s floor and filled it with nearly three thousand sculptures. The majority are made from molds of outmoded devices found on eBay, such as boom boxes, record players, VHS and cassette tapes, electric guitars, pianos, as well as corded telephones and payphones. Cast in crystal, volcanic ash, and other geological materials that give each work a charcoal-gray or chalky-white color, they are presented as eroded and timeworn artifacts of the recent past. However, the work's title, Welcome to the Future

  • Josh Faught, Sally Jesse (Scott), 2014, hand woven and crocheted hemp, gold lame, wool, sequin trim, pins on linen, 72 x 52 x 2".
    picks December 17, 2014

    Josh Faught

    For his latest show, Josh Faught has produced a multivalent range of woven and crocheted work. Handwoven hemp has been dyed to match the hues of the past year’s fashion and then adorned with glitter, sequin trim, gold lamé, and bedazzled seashells, among other winking materials. Each work has been named after a past lover, and Faught has woven the name of the individual into the tapestry. In many, the woof and warp is so tight that it creates images and patterns, while in others, the fabric frays and spools, gesturing at the precariousness of the medium. At play are dynamics of desire for human

  • View of “Adler Guerrier: Formulating a Plot,” 2014.
    picks October 01, 2014

    Adler Guerrier

    In 1968, Amiri Baraka’s harsh sentencing for purportedly inciting civil unrest in Newark, New Jersey, was symptomatic of the racial discrimination that led to the riots. He was guilty of “formulating a plot”—the judge’s words that inspired the subtitle of Haitian-born Adler Guerrier’s first solo museum exhibition. While themes of racial iniquity loom large in his exhibition, truth and fiction are blurred, preventing the work from becoming didactic.

    For instance, the mixed-media installation Untitled (BLCK-We Wear the Mask), 2007–2008, is a collection of artifacts from a fictional artist collective

  • Antonia Wright, Be, 2013, color video, 2 minutes 49 seconds.
    picks June 03, 2014

    Antonia Wright

    This survey of Miami-based Antonia Wright’s recent work includes a dozen videos; however, the body is the true medium she explores and pushes to the limit. For instance, Wright forces her own eye to register the sensation of touch in creating Lick of the Eye, 2012. The single-channel video is a close-up of her naked eye subjected first to blue eyedrops and then a brush applying wet yellow paint until her eye’s tissues turn green. As the title of another single-channel video Wet Tongue on the Dusty Floor, 2012, also underscores, the visual is deeply connected to the other senses—in that work’s

  • View of “Russell Maltz,” 2014.
    picks May 16, 2014

    Russell Maltz

    Each of the five works installed in the front room of Russell Maltz’s first solo exhibition in Miami is composed of stacked rectangular and square plywood plates suspended in the air by a single steel-post bracket. Their self-reflexive but coded titles refer to materials used and basic production details: “S. P.” in S. P./R#113 (all works 2013) is shorthand for “suspended”; “R” stands for red, the color of the acrylic, enamel, or Day-Glo paint applied to each plate; “#1,” the chronological order in which the work of the series was made in a year; and “13,” the year in which the work was completed.

  • View of “Time of the Empress,” 2014.
    picks January 21, 2014

    Aziz + Cucher

    For their latest exhibition, Aziz + Cucher present a video installation based on bombed-out buildings in Sarajevo and throughout Bosnia. Originally commissioned by the Indianapolis Museum of Art in 2012, this version of the work has been re-configured by curator Tami Katz-Freiman so that seven vertical flat-screen panels are suspended from the ceiling at eye level. The room is nearly entirely dark—the only light coming from the stark white background of the plasma screens, on which endless loops of digitally animated buildings rhythmically rise and fall. The work’s title, Time of the Empress

  • Peggy Levison Nolan, Untitled (Avis), 2011, C-print, 8 x 10”.
    picks October 05, 2013

    Peggy Levison Nolan

    For this exhibition, Miami-based photographer Peggy Levison Nolan has included over eighty of her small-scale color photographs taken between 2001 and the present day. Framed and hung side by side, they wrap around the gallery walls in a continuous, almost film-like strip, though without any obvious starting point or end. In this way, the “tales in the ground glass” invoked in the exhibition title refer to moments in Nolan’s life that she has captured on camera as much as they do the metaphorical diffusion or dissolution of a linear or singular storyline—much like the manner in which ground