Daniel Quiles

  • July 01, 2020

    “Allora & Calzadilla: Specters of Noon”

    Curated by Michelle White


    Allora & Calzadilla’s recent works have intervened in culturally and politically charged sites in Puerto Rico by way of surreal juxtapositions: installing Dan Flavin’s Puerto Rican light (to Jeanie Blake), 1965, in Cueva del Viento near Isabela (Puerto Rican Light [Cueva Vientos], 2015), for example, or deploying a church bell as a wrecking ball to demolish a shuttered GlaxoSmithKline pharmaceutical plant in Cidra (The Bell, the Digger, and the Tropical Pharmacy, 2014). “Specters of Noon” will feature seven new works that draw on the artists’ familiar motifs of deep

  • Rotimi Fani-Kayode

    In Rotimi Fani-Kayode’s Every Moment Counts (Ecstatic Antibodies), 1989, two black men stand in a half embrace. The shorter of the two gazes downward, his head resting on the other’s shoulder; they are draped in a lush burgundy fabric that traces a diagonal across the image. On the left, the taller man looks up and out, toward his edge of the frame, in the direction of the light source. Hovering behind his head is a halo of pearls attached to a red cross, a prop that sets the picture in the tradition of Christian iconography. (The figures’ illumination against a completely dark background

  • passages January 16, 2020

    Carla Herrera-Prats (1973–2019)

    I FIRST MET CARLA HERRERA-PRATS in the summer of 2008. I was invited to contribute an essay for her solo show at New York’s Art in General gallery, back when it was still just west of Chinatown on Walker Street. It was one of the first texts I ever wrote about a contemporary artist, and Carla was patient and generous with her time, most of it spent familiarizing me with her approach and materials—the technology that facilitated standardized testing in the United States. Photographs of antiquated IBM machinery and cluttered archives pertaining to the Iowa Testing Program hung on the walls, with

  • Adrian Wong

    In 2013, Adrian Wong was approached by the custodians of an extremely rare complete triceratops skull. They requested that he transform it into an artwork without damaging it in any way. (The owners hoped to take advantage of a Hong Kong law suspending sales tax on works of art.) While the commission fell through, the series Wong began in 2015, “Communiqués from the Rainbow Bridge,” is ongoing. The oil paintings superimpose red text atop blurred images of the dig site where the dinosaur’s remains were discovered. The writing details episodes from the creature’s life as received by twenty-five

  • picks September 23, 2019

    Adela Goldbard

    Adela Goldbard’s The Last Judgment, 2019, suggests the stage set for a dystopian, Chicanx retelling of Thornton Wilder’s Our Town. Crowded throughout the gallery are reproductions of landmarks of life in Chicago’s Little Village neighborhood: the iconic Gateway Arch, modeled on the entrances to the Mexican hometowns of many of the area’s immigrant residents; the brick facades of apartment buildings; the unglamorous signage for Little Village Discount Mall; a paletas (ice pops) cart; a toxic smokestack; an ICE SUV with flashing lights and effigies of skeletal agents—one with a familiar mop of


    Curated by Manuel Borja-Villel

    Miguel Ángel Campano was never interested in adhering to any one school of painting. Born in Madrid, Campano moved to Paris in the 1970s, a fertile decade during which he met Fernando Zóbel and focused on geometric abstraction. In the ’80s, working between France and Majorca, the artist turned to neo-expressionism while working on large-scale series such as “Vocales” (Vowels), 1979–81, which features embedded references to the work of Cézanne, Delacroix, and Poussin, among others. It was in this era that Campano was lauded—alongside contemporaries such as Ferran

  • picks May 15, 2019

    Laura Aguilar

    The “culture wars” of the 1980s and ’90s never ended—one of the many lessons of the retrospective “Laura Aguilar: Show and Tell,” curated by Sybil Venegas. Aguilar’s many series, from the testimonial “Latina Lesbians” portraits, 1987–89, to the utopian nude landscapes of “Stillness” and “Motion,” both 1999, gave voice and image to an intersectional range of marginalized people, including those who identify as Latinx, LBGTQ, differently abled, depressive, and nonconforming.

    Writing on an earlier version of this show, in 2018, Andy Campbell rightly noted the “radical intimacy” of Aguilar's portraits


    Curated by Hugo Vitrani

    As an exhibition theme, the megacity guarantees a heady mixture of aesthetic approaches, and “City Prince/esses” promises to be no exception. Indeed, curator Hugo Vitrani sees the topic as a call to exceed the purview of contemporary art and reach into an expanded creative field. Discarding the condescending associations of “developing world” terminology, this show opts both to celebrate metropolises’ “dynamic creativity” and to investigate their concerns about overcrowding and economic inequality across the work of fifty-some practitioners, photographers, filmmakers,

  • “Un arte sin tutela: Salón Independiente en México, 1968–1971”

    A PUBLICITY PHOTOGRAPH from the second Salón Independiente depicts nearly half of the exhibition’s artists, most standing against a wall, their hands up, and a few others sprawled on the ground. The massacre of approximately 325 student protesters in Tlatelolco’s Plaza de las Tres Culturas one year prior, on October 2, 1968, was an unmistakable reference. The first Salón Independiente opened just two weeks after Tlatelolco; it had been organized between July and October of that year, during the student protests and their ensuing repression by the government of Gustavo Díaz Ordaz. The Salón’s

  • interviews September 11, 2018

    Maria Gaspar

    Over the past year, artist Maria Gaspar has been leading workshops with a group of men at the Cook County Department of Corrections in Chicago’s Little Village neighborhood. Together, they have produced audio recordings and visual artworks that will be compiled into a digital animation and radio broadcast titled Radioactive: Stories from Beyond the Wall, 2018, which will be projected onto the compound’s north-facing wall for three hours after sundown on September 15 and September 16, 2018. Here, Gaspar discusses her related and ongoing 96 Acres Project, 2012–, and this new work.



    The oeuvre of self-taught painter, sculptor, and printmaker Rubem Valentim does not easily fit into the prevailing categories of Brazilian modernism. Tridental forms in the painted reliefs and sculptures that the artist described as “emblems” recall works of geometric abstraction by Alfredo Volpi or Lygia Pape, yet they are specifically drawn from the Afro-Brazilian religion candomblé. Valentim understood this faith as the foundation of a national symbology, one he tapped for his showings at the First Festival Mundial das Artes Negras in Dakar,

  • interviews May 11, 2018

    Gordon Hall

    Gordon Hall’s The Number of Inches Between Them, 2018, replicates a found sculptural bench and serves as a platform for choreography. It is on view at the MIT List Visual Arts Center in Cambridge, Massachusetts, through May 20, 2018. Below, Hall addresses their integrative approach to object making and performance.

    THE SHOW AT THE LIST CENTER, which includes sculptures, a letter, and a performance, is quiet and slow. I think of it both as a space of grief and a space to grieve. The performance features four people in their seventies and eighties, who sit on and use a concrete bench in a variety

  • “Teresa Burga:  Aleatory Structures”

    The international art world’s reappraisal of Peruvian artist Teresa Burga in the 2010s emphasized her Conceptualist approach in the 1970s. Her Autorretrato. Estructura. Informe, 9.6.1972 (Self-Portrait. Structure. Report, 9.6.1972), for example, provided physiological information about the artist in various media, and served as an allegory of biopolitics under Juan Velasco Alvarado’s left-wing dictatorship. Perfil de la mujer peruana (Portrait of the Peruvian Woman), 1980–81, was more ambitious in scale: a sociological survey of middle-class women in their late twenties.

  • Lucas Simões

    Corpos de Prova” (Bodies of Proof), Lucas Simões’s first exhibition at Patron, conjured a stark, almost antiseptic atmosphere, its compressive sculptures evenly spaced throughout the gallery. In pieces such as White Lies 14 (all works 2017),stacks of nonarchival computer paper—destined to curl and yellow over time—were pressed beneath or between rectangular or polygonal concrete slabs. Most of the unforgiving assemblages were in turn suspended on the wall or held aloft by empty metal rectangular prisms. These objects could be regarded as bravura meditations on interdependence, grounded

  • interviews March 16, 2018

    Huong Ngo and Hong-An Truong

    Hương Ngô and Hồng-Ân Trương’s work The Opposite of Looking is Not Invisibility. The Opposite of Yellow is Not Gold, 2016, pairs vernacular photographs of the artists’ mothers with texts from 1970s-era US congressional hearings regarding Vietnamese refugees. It is featured in “Being: New Photography 2018,” which will be on view at the Museum of Modern Art in New York from March 18 to August 19, 2018. Here, the artists discuss the political and personal impetuses behind their approach and how race, gender, and labor are often made invisible in cultural narratives.


  • Radical Women: Latin American Art, 1960–1985”

    ONE OF EIGHTY-SOME EXHIBITIONS in the Getty Foundation’s Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA initiative, “Radical Women: Latin American Art, 1960–1985” explicitly endeavored, as curators Cecilia Fajardo-Hill and Andrea Giunta put it, “to write a new chapter in twentieth-century art history” by correcting the field’s long-standing obfuscation of women artists’ contributions. On this count, “Radical Women” was a triumph, introducing dozens of neglected artists (including some from such rarely represented nations as Panama, Paraguay, and Costa Rica) to new audiences. It was more a feminist curatorial

  • “Concrete Matters”

    Having long ago supplanted “fantastic” figuration as the face of Latin American modernism, Concrete art is now enjoying a victory lap of sorts, with recent shows at David Zwirner in New York, the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles, and the Royal Academy of Arts in London. Matilda Olof-Ors is organizing this sampling of some seventy works by Lygia Clark, Hélio Oiticica, Tomás Maldonado, Jesús Rafael Soto, Gego, and others, with an emphasis on Brazil’s Grupo Ruptura and Grupo Frente (based in 1950s São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, respectively). A catalogue edited by María

  • Tania Pérez Córdova

    For “Smoke, Nearby,” Mexican artist Tania Pérez Córdova’s first US retrospective, the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago made the unusual decision of leaving one of its downstairs galleries clear of any dividing walls. The open expanse was bathed in a uniform white light, which lent a still, clinical appearance to the sculptures hanging from, leaning against, or tucked within a series of irregular wooden display structures. These constructions functioned as stations at which the viewer could pause, gradually building conceptual connections between the different sculptures as she navigated the

  • picks February 23, 2017

    “One Day This Kid Will Get Larger”

    In David Wojnarowicz’s Untitled (One day this kid…), 1990, a photograph of the artist as a young boy is surrounded by descriptions of the violence he will someday suffer at the hands of a homophobic society. Curated by Danny Orendorff, this survey of contemporary North American artists’ responses to HIV and AIDS sets up similar relays between a “chronic disease” in the present, defined by unequal access to treatment, and a devastating epidemic in the past. For many younger artists, Wojnarowicz’s ominous future tense––what will happen––has shifted to what could have been, a sense of the possible

  • picks January 27, 2017

    Brian O’Doherty

    “The grid glides, stammers, and blurts with different lengths and colours,” Brian O’Doherty wrote regarding his use of Ogham, an ancient Irish linear alphabet, in his paintings and sculptures from between 1968 and 1979. In groupings of perpendicular lines, Ogham vowels mark O’Doherty’s quizzical, skinny wall sculptures from this period, tethering abstraction to both language and the body. These wooden constructions adapt Mondrian’s modernist lexicon: Primary colors and black decorate their sides. Mirrored aluminum forms a V-shaped depression in each of their centers, with the Ogham marks etched