Claudine Ise

  • Jim Nutt, Toot-Toot Woo-Woo, 1970, acrylic on Plexiglas and paper; enamel on wood frame, 46 1/2 x 30”.
    picks April 13, 2011

    Jim Nutt

    Jim Nutt’s latest exhibition homes in on the artist’s singular portraits of women, arguably his most celebrated works and certainly his most immediately recognizable. Typically depicted from the shoulders up, their faces framed by gleaming coils of hair, they are striking amalgams of Nutt’s wide-ranging pictorial enthusiasms, which include Northern European portraits and sacral glass paintings, Persian miniatures, pulp novel covers, and pinball machine art.

    Nutt rose to prominence in the mid-1960s during his association with Chicago’s loose-knit “Hairy Who” group of artists, whose cartoonishly

  • View of “Uh-Oh It’s Magic,” 2011.
    picks April 04, 2011

    Ben Russell

    Ben Russell’s long-standing interests in cinema and animism have yielded an eclectic range of works incorporating performance, experimental ethnography, psychedelia, and, most salient, the histories of film and its apparatuses. Titled “Uh-Oh It’s Magic,” after the bouncy refrain of a 1980s Cars song, Russell’s latest exhibition attempts to dissolve the white cube’s clinical framework, albeit in slyly allusive fashion. The floors and walls of one gallery are painted the lurid shade of green-screen compositing, evoking the process that allows filmmakers to “magically” replace one background with

  • Gerard Byrne, A thing is a hole in a thing it is not, 2011, mixed media, dimensions variable. Installation view.
    picks February 14, 2011

    Gerard Byrne

    A thing is a hole in a thing it is not, Gerard Byrne’s 2010 multichannel film installation, takes its title from Carl Andre’s Minimalist credo, which first appeared as the title of an essay by Robert Smithson in the June 1967 issue of Artforum. It is both ironic and apt that Andre’s circuitous dictum on being and absence now provides a framework for an equally reverberant meditation on Minimalism’s historical reception. In this, as in past works, Byrne utilizes historical documents as raw material that he restages in filmed reenactments, often with actors. Five films are projected separately on

  • View of “Anne Wilson: Rewinds,” 2011.
    picks February 05, 2011

    Anne Wilson

    In her latest exhibition, Anne Wilson successfully weaves a dense discursive fabric out of the translucent materiality of glass. The artist is known for large-scale projects that use fibers, loom work, and collaborative practices to situate traditional handcrafted object making within an abstract topography of global postindustrial production. Wilson’s interest in the fibrous qualities of molten glass was piqued during her residencies at the Pilchuck Glass School in Tacoma, Washington, where she worked with gaffers and studio assistants to create “rewinds”—clear glass spindles, nestled in

  • Deb Sokolow, Chapter 7. The Architect, 
graphite and acrylic on paper, mounted to two panels, each 30 x 22”.
    picks December 16, 2010

    Deb Sokolow

    “Conspiracy theory (and its garish narrative manifestations) must be seen as a degraded attempt . . . to think the impossible totality of the contemporary world system,” wrote Fredric Jameson in his 1991 book Postmodernism, or, The Cultural Logic of Late Capitalism. Deb Sokolow’s highly entertaining works parody this idea by pushing the conspiracy genre to its absurdist extremes. In Sokolow’s hand-drawn works, even the Chicken McNugget—that degraded signifier of globalized consumer culture—is ripe with hidden significance. Using second person perspective––the destabilized “you” favored by numerous

  • Jennifer Reeder, Tears Cannot Restore Her; Therefore, I Weep, 2010, still from a color video, 10 minutes.
    picks December 11, 2010

    Jennifer Reeder

    This satisfying exhibition marks the debut of Jennifer Reeder’s latest short film as well as her first sculptural forays. The mundane exteriors of Reeder’s recent character-based narrative films often belie roiling emotional undercurrents, so it’s fitting that the mixed-media sculptures on view here are also made to hide their true forms. Shelved records culled from the artist’s personal collections, each album cover masked by a monochromatic felt sleeve, are stacked in striking Minimalist compositions along two walls. Elsewhere, disparate props shaped like an E.T. doll, a clown’s glove, and a

  • View of “Dana DeGiulio, Marie Torbensdatter Hermann, and Anders Ruhwald,” 2010. Foreground: Marie Torbensdatter Hermann, You Will #4, 2010. Middle ground: Anders Ruhwald, Beginning and Ending (version 4), 2010. Background: Dana DeGiulio, Amor vacui (detail), 2010.
    picks November 11, 2010

    Dana DeGiulio, Marie Torbensdatter Hermann, and Anders Ruhwald

    This collaborative exhibition of works by Chicago-based painter Dana DeGiulio and Danish ceramists Marie Torbensdatter Hermann and Anders Ruhwald is the latest installment in “Kabinett,” a yearlong series of shows at Devening Projects + Editions featuring local, national, and international artists. In this particular instance, the extent of the exchange among the three participating artists feels a bit underplayed, even tentative, but when things do start to heat up between them, the results are inspired and invigorating.

    The artworks keep discreetly to themselves in the first room. On the walls,

  • View of “Particulate Matter: Things, Thingys, Thingies,” 2010.
    picks October 03, 2010

    Stephanie Syjuco

    The whimsical sculptures in Stephanie Syjuco’s exhibition “Particulate Matter: Things, Thingys, Thingies” are based on designs that were never meant to have a material form. Each of the fifty-four pieces on view represents Syjuco’s attempt to physically render one of hundreds of virtual objects made with Google SketchUp, a free 3-D modeling program favored by amateur designers for its user-friendliness. (The exhibition also includes a video projection of these objects as they appear in digital form). While SketchUp designers can upload their creations to a shared database categorized by function

  • Deborah Stratman, Tactical Uses of a Belief in the Unseen, 2010, mixed media, dimensions variable. Installation view.
    picks September 29, 2010

    Deborah Stratman

    Deborah Stratman’s latest installation, Tactical Uses of a Belief in the Unseen, 2010, draws on urban crowd control strategies that were used by the Central Intelligence Agency’s Audio Harassment Division during the Vietnam War. These tactics—which the CIA nicknamed the Urban Funk Campaign—involved the deployment of helicopter-mounted public announcement systems known as “curdlers” to repel people from restricted areas and keep them psychologically off-kilter. When linked to a strong enough amplifier, the curdler could drop a nearly 11,500-foot-long cone of sound onto Vietcong forces in the

  • Roger Brown, Virtual Still Life #15 Waterfalls and Pitchers, 1995, mixed media, 37 1/2 x 50”.
    picks August 06, 2010

    Roger Brown

    This absorbing exhibition demonstrates that Roger Brown’s interests went far beyond the making of his own vibrantly idiosyncratic paintings. Among numerous other pursuits, Brown was an avid collector of quirky ceramic curios––bowls, dishes, vases, and other vessels by anonymous makers of varying skill levels––that appealed to the artist precisely because of their aberrant or iconoclastic qualities. In the late 1970s, Brown, an Alabama-born, Chicago-based artist associated with the latter city’s trend-bucking Imagist group of representational painters, moved to La Conchita, a small Southern

  • Daniel Albrigo, Maltesers, 2009, oil on panel, 30 x 40”.
    picks July 07, 2010

    Daniel Albrigo and Genesis Breyer P-Orridge

    Several years ago, performance artist and Throbbing Gristle/Psychic TV founder Genesis Breyer P-Orridge had every tooth in h/er mouth extracted and replaced with gold casts. P-Orridge and wife Lady Jaye had undergone numerous cosmetic procedures in order to increase their resemblance to each other and become gender-neutral, “pandrogynous” human beings. Lady Jaye died unexpectedly in 2007, before her own set of gold teeth could be implanted. “Putting Your Money Where Your Mouth Is . . . A Love Story,” a joint exhibition by P-Orridge and New York–based painter and tattoo artist Daniel Albrigo,

  • Jessica Labatte, Linear Flexing, 2010, color photograph,
 22 x 16”.
    picks May 12, 2010

    Jessica Labatte

    Jessica Labatte’s photographs thrive in the shadowy realm of paradox. Her precisely cluttered arrangements of objects––Styrofoam food packages, rubber balls, rolls of masking tape (along with the occasional head of lettuce or loaf of bread)––cunningly exploit the medium’s ability to flatten contours, collapse multiple visual planes, and confuse reality with its reflection. In Labatte’s large-scale photograph The Alignment (all works 2010), fragmentary views of an air filter, a round plastic bowl, a green ball, and wrinkled sheets of paper appear as if suspended in a void. It’s hard to tell