Ida Panicelli

  • Juan Uslé, Soñé que revelabas (Narmada) (Dreams That Reveal [Narmada]), 2018, vinyl, dispersion, and dry pigment on canvas, 107 7⁄8 × 79 7⁄8".

    Juan Uslé

    Since the late 1980s, the painter Juan Uslé has divided his time between New York and Spain, so it is probably inevitable that what might be called a “pendular” mode is inscribed in the work of this bilingual and bicultural artist. Perhaps more surprising is that it takes the form of a synesthetic investigation of rhythm. In the fourteen paintings (all works 2018), in his recent exhibition “Pedramala” (whose title refers to an area in the south of Spain, near Valencia, where Uslé has a house), color, forms, and marks were regulated by a continuous movement, giving the sense of an apparently

  • Alfredo Jaar, WHAT NEED IS THERE TO WEEP OVER PARTS OF LIFE? THE WHOLE OF IT CALLS FOR TEARS, 2018, neon, 19' 8 1⁄4“ × 15' 6 5⁄8”.

    Alfredo Jaar

    Its windows covered with red film, the gallery emitted a luminous glow, but this was no disco. Entering, viewers were enveloped by a dense fog that forced them to move about cautiously, drawn to a red neon sign that covered the entire back wall, its letters very far apart, elongated like falling teardrops and nearly illegible. The words had to be reconstructed one by one so that their meaning could be felt in all its painful effect: WHAT NEED IS THERE TO WEEP OVER PARTS OF LIFE? THE WHOLE OF IT CALLS FOR TEARS. This is also the title of this 2018 work, taken from the letter of consolation written

  • View of “Mimmo Rotella Manifesto,” 2018.
    picks December 05, 2018

    Mimmo Rotella

    In the early 1950s, to escape the trap of geometric abstraction and art informel, which were then dominant modes, Mimmo Rotella invented his own personal language, one inspired by his contemporaries’ experimentations—from Lucio Fontana’s trademark slashes to the use of “improper” art materials, as in Alberto Burri’s sacchi (burlap sack pieces). As apparent from the garish advertising plastered across city walls, postwar Italy had become driven by consumerism. Fascinated by these posters, Rotella appropriated them, scraping them from the walls of Rome at night and then, in his studio, assembling

  • Marzia Migliora, Pane di bocca (detail), 2018, dental forceps, wedding ring, 6 7⁄8 × 4 3⁄4 × 4 3⁄4". Photo: Sandro Scalia.

    Marzia Migliora

    Marzia Migliora has more than once engaged in dialogue with buildings that have a rich historical, cultural, and social resonance: Palazzo del Lavoro in Turin in 2016, Ca’ Rezzonico in Venice in 2017. Absorbing the significance of such structures, she responds with works of great emotional density and rigorous attention to detail. In this exhibition, titled “Voce del verbo avere” (Voice of the Verb to Have), she rose to the challenge presented by Palermo’s Palazzo Branciforte, a sixteenth-century edifice that, in the nineteenth century, housed the Monte dei Pegni di Santa Rosalia—a pawnshop.

  • Jaanus Samma, Outhouse by the Church, 2018, wooden outhouse, metal structure. Installation view.
    picks October 25, 2018

    Jaanus Samma

    In “Outhouse by the Church,” Jaanus Samma examines the public urinal as a site of past and present gay cruising. Flaminio Station 1–4, 2016–18, based on archival research and a map of Roman public baths, focuses on one such facility near Piazza del Popolo, which has not yet been rendered anachronistic by dating apps and remains a cruising site. In this series, four panels of yellow ceramic tiles evoke public bathrooms; graffiti with offers and requests for sexual services and the inevitable tones of trash talk contribute to the work’s extroverted and rambunctiously Pop-y nature.

    In contrast,

  • Leon Golub, Interrogation, 1992, silk screen on paper, 17 × 22".

    Leon Golub

    An unforgiving witness to his time, Leon Golub (1922–2004) was America’s Goya during the second half of the twentieth century, recording and denouncing in his art what critic Donald Kuspit called the “pathology of power.” While aware of various classical European sculptural and pictorial traditions, as well as developments in French postwar art, Golub’s painting is rough, stripped bare of anything agreeable or polite. Neither alluring nor eager to please, his images are coarse—they scrape against the eyes. He drew upon a wide variety of visual sources, high and low: from Greek statuary and

  • Elaine Reichek, Minoan Family Tree, 2014, hand embroidery on linen, 24 × 22 1⁄8".

    Elaine Reichek

    The protagonists of Elaine Reichek’s first exhibition in Austria, “Now If I Had Been Writing This Story,” were four mythological women from ancient Crete: Ariadne, Europa, Pasiphaë, and Phaedra. While they may be of divine descent, these women are not in command of their own fates. Their destinies are determined by gods, kings, husbands, and lovers, driven by lust, betrayals, vendettas, and duplicity. They are kidnapped, abandoned, ransomed, glorified, or punished, always at the mercy of events beyond their control. They are free only to experience frenzied and often destructive passions, schemes,

  • Francesco Clemente, Black Flags Blue Sky II, 2016, oil on canvas, 71 1⁄4 × 87".

    Francesco Clemente

    Accustomed to collaborating with poets and writers—among them Gregory Corso, Allen Ginsberg, Rene Ricard, and Salman Rushdie—Francesco Clemente allowed himself to be seduced by Poet in New York, the recently retranslated collection of poems that Federico García Lorca wrote between 1929 and 1930 while a student at Columbia University. With a sort of foresight, Lorca saw the city as a merciless meat grinder that devours the most vulnerable, the destitute, and innocent children. His critique of the capitalist world led him to write of Wall Street: “There, as nowhere else, you feel a total

  • Romina Bassu, Intervallo (Interval), 2017, acrylic on canvas, 39 3/8 x 31 1/2".

    Romina Bassu

    In “Male Gaze,” Romina Bassu explored a certain model of femininity whose genesis can be traced back to the idea of the mindless, submissive, “perfect” housewife of the 1950s. Inspired by vintage photos, films, and TV ads she has collected for years, the Italian artist borrows atmospheres and poses from that era to look beneath its pervasive and subtly abusive propaganda for a world built around the demands of dominant male culture and the consumer society. While the female subjects of Bassu’s paintings are defined by the artifice of their socially prescribed roles, she alters their appearance

  • Maria Lai, Libro cucito (Sewn Book) [detail], 2009, velvet and thread, 11 x 12 x 2".
    picks February 04, 2018

    Maria Lai

    With forty works spanning the 1950s to the 2000s, Maria Lai’s exhibition examines fragments of her long and multifaceted creative path. From her native land, Sardinia, Lai had an unimpeded view toward a horizon as vast as the sea, though as an islander, she knows that that not only is space infinite, it can also be a wall. And she courageously crossed over it, in the early 1940s, to move to Venice as a young woman to study with the sculptor Arturo Martini. The influence of sculpture is evident in the solid construction of the figures in her drawings and paintings from the 1960s, and also in her

  • Luisa Rabbia, Love (detail), 2016, colored pencil and acrylic on canvas, 9' × 16' 10".

    Luisa Rabbia

    The color blue has been important to Luisa Rabbia’s artistic investigations since the 1990s. This show of ten works made between 2009 and 2017 adds new nuances and tonalities: violet, maroon, red. Drawing in pencil on acrylic paint on paper or canvas, she weaves an intricate web of signs and achieves pictorial plenitude in the combination/opposition of a flat, frequently blue background and the vertiginous stratification of pencil marks. In these works, inner and outer landscapes coexist, demanding a variable perspective from viewers. At close range, one can perceive traces of the artist’s hand,

  • Massimo Bartolini, Pensive Bodhisattva (detail), 2017, enamel on galvanized iron, hydraulic motor, electronic control unit, bronze, 98 x 197 x 197".
    picks December 21, 2017

    Massimo Bartolini

    Massimo Bartolini has a history of interrogating notions of absence and presence—and here he approaches his subjects from different emotional and conceptual angles, such as the longing for a distant lover or the effacement of a writer’s identity. All of his works point to contradictions of the real and how much we invest in and identify with our beliefs.

    The two most impressive works in this exhibition mix Asian and European spiritual symbols with a minimalist rationalism. The Cartesian order of Pensive Bodhisattva, 2017, a large-scale iron structure, features an antique Korean statue of a