Catherine Wood

  • Catherine Wood

    1 “RADICAL WOMEN: LATIN AMERICAN ART, 1960–1985” (HAMMER MUSEUM, LOS ANGELES; CURATED BY CECILIA FAJARDO-HILL AND ANDREA GIUNTA WITH MARCELA GUERRERO AND CONNIE BUTLER) I was thrilled and humbled to visit this expansive, deeply researched show at the game-changing moment #MeToo was breaking. The exhibition testified to the drive of so many women artists—who were very often working under repressive, authoritarian, and violent regimes—to take control of their own bodies as independent aesthetic, political, and sexual territories. The show brought visibility to marginalized practices

  • SPIRIT MOVES: THE ART OF SIMONE FORTI

    DANCE, YVONNE RAINER FAMOUSLY OBSERVED, is “hard to see.” Rainer was referring to the elusiveness of her medium, its continuous state of movement in the live act of performance. But history has proved her words to be true in another sense: The ephemerality of dance has impeded efforts to make its key figures visible within the field of contemporary art, a context in which they have had significant influence. The reception of the work of Simone Forti is a striking case in point. Though widely acknowledged by her peers as a pioneer of many of the forms and attitudes artists explored from the 1960s

  • “A Year at the Stedelijk: Tino Sehgal”

    Extending his durational approach to the exhibition of choreographed situations, Tino Sehgal has conceived with the curators a retrospective that will unfold over the course of one calendar year. Twelve of the artist’s pieces that were designed for the museum context, rather than the fair or theater, will be presented in succession; one work will be performed each month in a different gallery. Demanding a substantial commitment from viewers who want to see the entire retrospective, this show nevertheless promises a richer engagement with each

  • “Sasha Waltz: Installations Objects Performances”

    On the occasion of her fiftieth birthday, German dance-theater maker Sasha Waltz will step off the proscenium to stage an exhibition project at ZKM in her hometown of Karlsruhe. Peter Weibel’s institution has encouraged a number of important experiments integrating performance with the plastic arts in recent years, including the “media pop opera”–cum-conference Our Literal Speed, in 2008, and “Moments: A History of Performance in 10 Acts,” in 2012. Reconfiguring the relic-heavy “dance retrospective” paradigm, Waltz will continue her exploration of stage

  • OUT OF BODY: THE ART OF EI ARAKAWA

    For nearly a decade, EI ARAKAWA has staged performances with startling brio, his makeshift sets, friendly throngs, and offhand gestures signaling a type of eccentric event that won’t be limited by art’s normal viewing structures. But the New York–based artist does not only act, he reenacts. Key to his works is an attention to the constructed, given, and preconceived—the repetition of history, the commodification of experience, the false intimacy of networks. He thus continually revisits the experimental art that has come before him, not least that of the postwar avant-gardes within and beyond

  • 1000 WORDS: BORIS CHARMATZ

    WHEN HE WAS ASKED to lead the Centre Chorégraphique National de Rennes et de Bretagne in northern France in 2009, Boris Charmatz’s first move was to reject the institution’s name: Neither center, choreographic, or national seemed adequate. So he renamed it the Musée de la Danse, or, in its English rendering, the Dancing Museum. Charmatz has described this ongoing project, which has extended beyond the space in Rennes to become a conceptual frame for many aspects of his practice, as akin to wearing glasses with lenses that enable us to see dance happening everywhere. Dance is cast not so much as

  • Yvonne Rainer

    On the heels of its well-acclaimed collaborations with Merce Cunningham and Trisha Brown, Dia will present the work of avant-garde choreographer Yvonne Rainer beginning this fall. Building on Sid Sachs’s excellent archival show “Yvonne Rainer: Radical Juxtapositions 1961–2002,” Yasmil Raymond has organized a live exhibition that will stage seven of Rainer’s key pieces in varied combinations over three weekends. The repertoire will range from early pieces, including Three Satie Spoons, 1961, and We Shall Run, 1963, to Rainer’s newest work, Assisted Living: Good Sports 2

  • “Danser Sa Vie: Art and Dance in the 20th and 21st Centuries”

    Taking inspiration from Isadora Duncan’s proclamation “From the first I have only danced my life,” this exhibition offers a historical look at the ways dance and visual art have informed each other since Muybridge first captured motion on film.

    Taking inspiration from Isadora Duncan’s proclamation “From the first I have only danced my life,” this exhibition offers a historical look at the ways dance and visual art have informed each other since Muybridge first captured motion on film. Nearly one hundred artists will be represented here, from Kazuo Shiraga to Kelly Nipper, with their works—sketches, photo, film, and video—organized by the curators into three “acts”: self-expression and emancipation, bodily abstraction and kinetic form, and the body as event or social sculpture. There

  • the Manchester International Festival

    AMONG THE TWENTY-PLUS new works that will debut this July during the third iteration of the UK’s biannual Manchester International Festival, The Life and Death of Marina Abramović carries the most alarming title. But not to worry: Despite the artist’s past deployments of crossbows, burning gasoline, and loaded guns, the piece—a biographical play directed by the legendary Robert Wilson, starring Abramović and Willem Dafoe, and featuring music by Antony Hegarty of Antony and the Johnsons—will not put the doyenne in terminal danger. It may imperil simplistic historical constructions,

  • Move: Choreographing You

    Anyone with a fear of audience participation might be tempted to sidestep the Hayward’s autumn show.

    Anyone with a fear of audience participation might be tempted to sidestep the Hayward’s autumn show. Titled with the imperative “Move,” it examines— and invites—interaction, via the lens of choreography. Unusual for an exhibition exploring the intersection of dance and art—a theme quite popular of late— “Move” puts the viewer “onstage” among installations, enacting performances from the past six decades by a variety of artists including Pablo Bronstein, Trisha Brown (whose company is in residence at Southbank Centre this fall), Tania Bruguera, Boris Charmatz, Lygia

  • Catherine Wood

    CATHERINE WOOD

    1 “Lynda Benglis/Robert Morris: 1973–74” (Susan Inglett Gallery, New York) Like me, you may have long been fascinated by the two images at the center of this show: Morris with pumped muscles, in a helmet and chains—performing the rhetoric of masculine labor at play in his minimal constructions—and Benglis in sunglasses, with a dildo made from the same latex as her anti-form works. But as the ephemera, photographs, drawings, and sculptures brought together by David Platzker (of the curatorial-archival initiative Specific Object) made clear, there was much more to this

  • Jeff Koons and Tino Sehgal

    IN THE CLOSING MONTHS OF 2008, most of us were preoccupied by the looming specter of penury, so it seemed somewhat discordant that the season witnessed not one but two exhibitions by contemporary artists in famously opulent palaces: Jeff Koons at the Château de Versailles outside Paris and Tino Sehgal at the Villa Reale in Milan. Installed within the elaborately stuccoed and gilded rooms of the grand buildings, the artists’ works nestled into the luxurious company of classical sculptures, antique furniture, oil paintings, rich tapestries, and other trappings of aristocratic privilege—settings

  • OPENINGS: CYPRIEN GAILLARD

    CYPRIEN GAILLARD’S VIDEO Desniansky Raion, 2007, opens with a view of a Belgrade housing block built in the 1980s. The building—two slightly asymmetrical towers conjoined by a walkway and crowned with a circular observation deck—stands alone in the center of the frame, a kind of gateway to the work. As an architectural hieroglyph, however, it speaks of a particular moment and social context, its tired futurism evoking the obsolete industrial buildings photographed by Bernd and Hilla Becher. The video’s sound track, composed by the French musician Koudlam, begins as a barely audible

  • CATHERINE WOOD

    FROM THE BEGINNING, Michael Clark’s soaring aptitude for ballet has been agitated by a voraciously analytic mind and a rebellious spirit. As an adolescent, he trained at London’s Royal Ballet School, where he excelled to the degree that in 1979, at the age of seventeen, he was offered a place in the company. Clark turned down the invitation, thus embarking upon a career guided by a disinclination to propagate the superficial appearance of his form without delving into its meaning—for him personally, for his dancers, for his audience, for our culture. Over the course of three decades, he has

  • “Our Literal Speed”

    CHAIRING A TALK at the Frieze Art Fair in London in 2006, art historian and critic Claire Bishop observed that the live panel discussion had, in recent years, replaced performance art as the home of “authenticity.” Paradoxically, her comment put into relief the performed quality of the thoughts being articulated by the panelists surrounding her on the podium, making it seem that Bishop was very much aware of the theater at play in such an impression—especially as the live event in question was a supplement to the nakedly transactional character of an art fair. It’s very often that the academic

  • Catherine Wood

    IT HAS BEEN A DECADE since the Tony Blair government came to power and boasted of “Cool Britannia,” and a decade as well since the Royal Academy of Art’s touchstone celebration of Young British Artists in “Sensation”—but it took two high-visibility “art moments” in 2007, signifying that we had finally exhausted the paradigms initiated by these parallel momentums, to give us a sense of just how much art’s terrain in London has shifted. In March, Blair himself stepped onto the stage underneath Carsten Höller’s Unilever commission at Tate Modern to make a parting speech about his government’s

  • OPENINGS: BONNIE CAMPLIN

    BONNIE CAMPLIN’S WORK STAGES A FRACTURED, contemporary take on the “conversation piece,” the genre of intimately scaled, informal group portraits that were popular in Britain in the eighteenth century. Like the historical painters who portrayed families and cliques in naturalistic but subtly idealized ways, engaging in such common activities as attending a hunt or a musical party, Camplin makes use of art’s double-edged capacity to fictionalize a personal milieu and simultaneously construct that milieu as a situation of meaningful communality. A close circle of relatives, friends, and fellow