Beau Rutland


    Curated by Melissa Blanchflower

    In the decade following the revelatory exhibition of Faith Ringgold’s paintings from the 1960s at the Neuberger Museum of Art, Purchase College, New York, the artist, activist, author, and educator began, finally, to receive the sort of attention she richly deserved. For one, her American People Series #20: Die, 1967, an unflinching portrait of race relations through the lens of history painting, was acquired in 2016 by the Museum of Modern Art, New York, where it has largely remained on display since joining that storied collection. Ringgold’s solo show at the


    JENNIFER PACKER PAINTS intimate pictures. Her source material ranges from photographs to sittings to imagined scenarios, but the subjects are always the people she is closest to—friends, fellow artists, relatives, lovers. Unlike other contemporary artists who claim the portrait as their métier, Packer isn’t aiming to glamorize anyone, much less idealize them. She showcases ambiguity and hints at the fissures and contradictions of personality. With complex, confident paint handling and an increasingly restrained palette, she conveys affection and concern, yet establishes a respectful distance

  • Front International: Cleveland Triennial for Contemporary Art: “An American City”

    As anyone who’s been to Cleveland can attest, its civic pride runs deep. While the Cavaliers have recently brought much-needed acclaim to Believeland, the city continues to face hardships found throughout the Rust Belt. FRONT International, the Cleveland-based triennial debuting this summer, seeks to directly confront the city’s complex history and current realities through various initiatives, including the re-creation of a 1973 mural by Julian Stanczak, and Michael Rakowitz’s citywide project responding to the fatal police shooting of twelve-year-old Tamir Rice in

  • Peter Saul, San Quentin #1 (Angela Davis at San Quentin), 1971, oil on canvas, 71 × 94".

    Peter Saul

    HOW LONG UNTIL Peter Saul is rediscovered once and for all? His off-putting yet oddly appealing paintings—marked by a Day-Glo palette, cartoonish (dis)figuration, and obscene imagery—emerged in the early 1960s, gaining him prominence and notoriety by the decade’s end. Though he has consistently shown at galleries and smaller museums, Saul’s work has always been seen as slightly out of step—puerile, even. Deeply irreverent toward art, the art world, and the world at large, his paintings maintain a willful distance from prevailing notions of good taste, assailing decorum with a vile

  • Joan Brown, Wolf in Room, 1974, enamel on canvas, 97 x 72".
    picks October 13, 2017

    Joan Brown

    Why isn’t Joan Brown taken seriously? Despite support from curators and collectors throughout her trailblazing, four-decade-long career, Brown remains shockingly left out of the conversation. There are a few factors to consider: Brown was closely affiliated with “West Coast art” in the 1970s and 1980s, when the term was still used pejoratively; her sentimental subject matter was way ahead of its time (consider her domestic scenes, kissing couples, animal portraits, as well as various family members); and most notably, Brown wasn’t afraid of painting an ugly picture, as her inclusion in Marcia

  • Reena Spaulings, Bonjour! 1–3, 2017, oil on Dibond and mixed media. Installation view. Photo: Britta Schlier.

    Reena Spaulings

    AFTER MORE THAN A DECADE of caustic yet playful teasing of the contemporary art apparatus, Reena Spaulings has been granted a retrospective—sort of. To offer some historical background for the uninitiated: In 2003, writer John Kelsey and artist Emily Sundblad opened Reena Spaulings, a gallery on New York’s Lower East Side, which has since launched the careers of many influential artists. In 2004, artworks made by Kelsey and Sundblad under the moniker “Reena Spaulings” began appearing in group shows. Audiences then learned a great deal about Reena—as both artist and gallery are usually


    Over the past three decades, the Swiss artist Ugo Rondinone, an Alpine mystic of sorts, has gained international attention for a dizzying array of works in nearly every medium imaginable, bound by a humanist undercurrent. “The world just makes me laugh,” the artist’s first major show in the Bay Area, is the penultimate stop of a five-part “serial exhibition” that had previous iterations in Rotterdam, Rome, and Cincinnati, each installation featuring its own catalogue. This latest  manifestation will feature both iconic Rondinone works and more recent ones—figurative

  • Aliza Nisenbaum, La Talaverita, Sunday Morning NY Times, 2016, oil on linen, 68 × 88". From the Whitney Biennial.

    Whitney Biennial 2017

    Following a three-year hiatus to accommodate the museum’s move downtown, the Whitney Biennial makes its Gansevoort Street debut this March. As the republic falls before our very eyes, one hopes that this divisive survey of American art will react against, and not just reflect, the current state of affairs. This year’s roster of sixty-three artists and collectives is thankfully diverse in perspectives and refreshingly full of emerging and underrecognized voices—absent are the many elder statesmen often gratuitously included in these affairs. The

  • Concept rendering for Max Hooper Schneider’s untitled abandoned-shopping-mall project (work in progress), 2015.


    A SINK with a grim provenance—salvaged from a morgue—is filled to the brim with turquoise water that disguises the school of fish within; snails crawl inside an old-timey popcorn cart: Max Hooper Schneider has become known for artworks that fuse natural ecosystems with unlikely readymades, resulting in uncanny, otherworldly habitats. Hooper Schneider’s ephemera, including dishwashers, a porcelain birthday cake, and a coffin, become host sites for invasive species whose mere presence reminds us that no matter how hermetic our online, mostly indoor lives might seem, we can’t seal ourselves off

  • View of “Kerstin Brätsch: PELE’S CURSE,” 2015. From left: Unstable Talismanic Rendering_ Pele’s Curse Nr. 34, 2014; Unstable Talismanic Rendering_27, 2014. Photo: Michael Tropea.

    Kerstin Brätsch

    IS KERSTIN BRÄTSCH a skeptic or a believer? Throughout her practice, the artist subverts individual aesthetic gestures, technical skill, and objecthood, but it’s often difficult to tell whether Brätsch wants to critique the “institution”—or warmly embrace it. On one hand, her work can be overburdened with a proliferation of voices, so that any individual output is subsumed under other monikers and makers. On the other, her paintings are elegant, considered—ready to be wistfully contemplated and quickly acquired. Like Martin Kippenberger before her, Brätsch surrounds her work with

  • Alex Da Corte, Chelsea Hotel no. 2, 2010, HD video, color, sound, 3 minutes 4 seconds.

    “Alex Da Corte: Free Roses”

    Despite a soft-spoken beginning, Alex Da Corte’s practice has become rather spectacular in recent years. His large-scale built environments—think low-end consumer goods encased in high production value—register as an amalgam of an advertising studio, a Christie’s day sale, and a domestic interior designed by an overzealous decorator with Memphis on the mind. Such installations feature everyday objects and artworks by Da Corte and others, as well as replicas of said works. The first institutional survey of the artist’s shape-shifting oeuvre, “Free Roses” will span

  • “Marina Pinsky: Dyed Channel”

    Marina Pinsky has quickly become known for material explorations that often enmesh photography and sculpture. For her first major institutional exhibition, Pinsky will train her eye on the host city itself, surveying Basel’s history as a capital of the chemical industry—from its aniline-dye factories in the mid-nineteenth century to its current gaggle of corporate pharmaceutical residents (e.g., Roche). Sprawling across the kunsthalle’s ground floor, the show will feature newly made work, including a commissioned installation of two dozen large-scale sculptures in