Andrew Berardini

  • View of “laub: the love in our belly,” 2016.
    picks October 07, 2016

    laub

    In the center of a golden room glowing in the midday sun sits a glass saguaro cactus on a wooden table held together with soldered copper wires and blooming with handmade flowers. An old pay phone hangs silent and broken from the wall, and a twisted gold stick leans listlessly in a corner across from an industrious electric fan waving its blades to billow a single plastic bag. A black wooden chair lingers by the door.

    In Golden Room (all works 2016) one can watch the shadows of a passing day trace their patterns over the old walls, cut and scarred, and hear the voice of laub echoing from the

  • View of “Henry Taylor, 2016”. From left: Henry Taylor, Yellow Cap Sunday, 2016; Not Yet Titled, 2016.
    picks September 26, 2016

    Henry Taylor

    Days later, the gallery’s still dank with the hotboxed aroma of weed. At the opening of Henry Taylor’s fourth exhibition with this gallery, a film that the artist collaborated on with Kahlil Joseph screened in a shadowy room where a crew of Rastafarians smoked very large spliffs in quietude, just as they do in Wizard of the Upper Amazon, 2016.

    Taylor paints with deceptive simplicity and a sophisticated heart the people and scenes he sees around him, and here, these pictures hang in a room amid a dirt lot, graffitied walls, and a dead tree that arcs high to the pristine white ceiling. Another room

  • Doug Aitken, Black Mirror, 2011, still from the 13-minute-20-second three-channel color video component
of a mixed-media installation additionally comprising mirrors.

    “Doug Aitken: Electric Earth”

    “A lot of times I dance so fast that I become what’s around me,” says the protagonist of Doug Aitken’s mesmeric, immersive multichannel video installation Electric Earth, 1999, which lends its name to the artist’s first large-scale survey, appropriately debuting in his hometown. The exhibition and catalogue highlight Aitken’s wide-ranging oeuvre, including such atmospheric pieces as diamond sea, 1997, his first foray into multichannel productions, as well as slickly fabricated sculptures, photographs, collages, and documentation of architectural projects.

  • Juliette Blightman, Coma (B and K sleeping), 2016, gouache on paper, 27 1/2 × 19 3/4".

    Juliette Blightman

    The practice of everyday life, a life examined, radical subjectivity, the personal made public: Moved by any and all of these, Juliette Blightman photographs, paints, films, writes, and performs the slow drawl of the quotidian with all its dance parties and traipsing children, houseplants and living rooms, naked bodies and jokey games, encountered artworks and occasional orgies. Hardly an autonomous author but a member of a community, Blightman will be exhibiting her own works at Kunsthalle Bern, alongside those of “friends, family, and heroes.” The compulsive

  • View of “Omul Negru,” 2016. From left: Daniel Albrigo and Genesis Breyer P-Orridge, Thee Ghost, 2010; Max Hooper Schneider, Pet Food Effigies, 2016.
    picks August 12, 2016

    “Omul Negru”

    Something wicked this way walks. The Romanian title of this show (which began in the gallery’s Bucharest counterpart), “Omul Negru,” translates to “man in black,” and curator Aaron Moulton has included over forty works haunted by bogeymen. Donald Trump is an evil lurker for some, to be sure; the Republican presidential candidate readily evokes the kinds of fears in evidence here. Serial killer John Wayne Gacy’s self-portrait in a clown suit, Pogo the Clown, ca. 1990, hangs not far from the curator’s son Asger Kali Mason Ravnkilde Moulton’s scrawling terror in Six Boogey-Mans, 2016. A Hitler

  • View of “EVERYBODY! COME STAND ON THE ALTAR!,” 2016. From left: Deana Lawson, Altar, 2010;  Anna Betbeze, Fugitive, 2016.
    picks June 29, 2016

    “Everybody! Come Stand on the Altar!”

    Theatrical lights shine and move throughout the room during Keaton Macon’s audio piece Overlay, 2016, which is interrupted by another work—this one made of darkness and five channels of a haunting voice, by Dorian Wood. The lights play over a collection of objects and writing, to make a performance, a stage, an altar, an art show. Running in a thirty-minute cycle, the lighting shifts off to give seven minutes of drama to Jesse Fleming’s The Snail and the Razor, 2012, a thrilling video of a snail very slowly crawling over the edge of a razor, sound tracked with a sensational drumbeat. K.r.m.

  • Rachelle Sawatsky, Reincarnation Clash, 2016, oil and flashe on canvas, 51 1/2 x 58".
    picks June 09, 2016

    Rachelle Sawatsky

    Punctuation marks and unnamed orifices, secret alphabets and twinkling stars—are they punching out or windowing in? Streaked with watercolor or screen printer’s ink and glistening with glaze, fifteen ceramic works—shapely paintings or painterly sculptures, as you wish—circle and constellate in the gallery. Slashed and splattered with almost diaphanous color, these works soften the hard white walls and set the scenic sky for figurative paintings hanging among them. The mess and surreal poetry of corporeality has been Rachelle Sawatsky’s subject for a spell now, but rarely have her bodies

  • Made In L.A. 2016: “a, the, though, only”

    The third edition of the Hammer’s self-described locals-only biennial (although some participants lived in Los Angeles only briefly) arrives otherwise themeless, save for its cryptically beautiful subtitle—a, the, though, only—provided by the poet Aram Saroyan.While the show includes radically fewer artists than previous iterations (a mere twenty-six), it nevertheless showcases a broad range of practices, with musical scores by Wadada Leo Smith, choreography by Adam Linder, films by Arthur Jafa and Laida Lertxundi, public-access activism by

  • Elaine Cameron-Weir, Metaphor, 2016, stainless steel, lead, sand, 9' x 78“ x 27”.
    picks April 13, 2016

    Elaine Cameron-Weir

    An alchemist has abandoned her laboratory. A long adobe wall serving as a threshold wears licks of neon like lightning contained, along with angled metal arms holding liquid candles and rearview mirrors, large pearly clamshells, and gleaming silver. Concocted from terrazzo tabletops shaped like butterfly wings and the spotless chrome of lab equipment, the stations beyond the wall, including Sentry Tactical Like Prey with Evolutionary Eyes of a Predator on the Wing 2 (all works 2016), hold flickering flames of cooking frankincense—filling the vast rooms with a churchy and ancient aroma. Within

  • Nathaniel Mellors, The Sophisticated Neanderthal Interview, 2012–13 HD video, color, sound, 24 minutes.
    picks March 21, 2016

    Nathaniel Mellors

    It’s like watching television, but even more fucked up. There are many ways, of course, to fuck up a television show, but artist and musician Nathaniel Mellors, for his debut solo exhibition here, gives us the shape and cues of a British sitcom as warped by the absurdist tragicomedy of Samuel Beckett and the squelching oeuvre of Paul McCarthy. Mellors’s video series “Ourhouse,” 2010–16, for instance, features a chubby man known as The Object eating and excreting books whose contents corrupt the lives of a nuclear family with walk-on troglodytes and casual cannibalism.

    Spend an hour in this world

  • Julie Weitz, Aftermath, 2015, HD video, color, sound, 7 minutes 40 seconds.

    Julie Weitz

    Beyond a glass front door, metal chains dangled breezily over a carpet of pink eggshell foam, which sprang back buoyantly from each footstep, absorbing its sound. Velvety black walls led beyond a wall of mirrors into the soft, gently throbbing darkness of the gallery’s main room. A deep, almost sepulchral pulse seeped in from adjoining rooms, resonating with spooky syncopation, accompanied here and there by the jingle of spectral bells, a phantom trumpet. Six projections and three works on flatscreens, angled in odd directions through the space’s irregular rooms, were doubled in the mirrors’

  • Left: Dealer Monika Sprüth and artist Barbara Kruger. Right: Collector Eli Broad and artist John Baldessari. (All photos: Owen Kolasinski/BFA.com)
    diary February 26, 2016

    Dear John

    ACROSS THE STREET from sunset tourists posing for snaps in front of Chris Burden’s Urban Light, jumping distance from chopped-up sections of the Berlin Wall, the first-floor windows of an International Style two-story building read over and over again, I WILL NOT MAKE ANY MORE BORING ART.

    An exercise cooked up in 1971 for a class at Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, the words adorn these windows but also currently a hallway downtown at the Museum of Contemporary Art, and are available on pencils as merch across the street at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, a marketing tie-in for a