James Welling

  • passages September 17, 2017

    Richard Benson (1943–2017)

    I FIRST HEARD ABOUT RICHARD BENSON decades ago in an Aperture article on the portfolios he printed with Paul Strand at the end of Strand’s life. From Calvin Tompkins’s 1990 profile in the New Yorker, I discovered that Benson had started his career in the mid 1960s as a camera operator at the legendary Connecticut printing firm Meriden Gravure. What he inhaled at Meriden, you might say, was a tradition of exquisite printing for illustrious clients. In 1972, he left Meridian to make his own photographs and to work as freelance halftone cameraman and printer. Over the next few years Benson and a

  • THEIR FAVORITE EXHIBITIONS OF THE YEAR

    To take stock of the past year, Artforum asked an international group of artists to select the single image, exhibition, or event that most memorably captured their eye in 2012.

    RITA ACKERMANN

    Gang Gang Dance (September 22, Cameo Gallery, Brooklyn) If materialism is the unwanted fat on our spirits, Gang Gang Dance’s music is the blade that cuts it all off. Their sounds burn up that heaviness of need and greed and lift the spirits to other dimensions. A hundred years ago, Rudolf Steiner wrote The Philosophy of Freedom and feverishly lectured about protective space and other visionary ideas to

  • ARTISTS ON L.A.:

    ELEANOR ANTIN

    David and I arrived in Solana Beach, a coastal town north of San Diego, after driving cross-country from New York in an old beat-up Caddy with our one-year-old son, Blaise. Robert Kennedy was dying of gunshot wounds in an LA hospital after winning the California primary, and it was twenty-four hours after Valerie Solanas shot Andy Warhol back in New York. A hot sunny day in June 1968, and there were huge juicy oranges in the back garden. A year later Manson and company went on their rampage in the Hollywood Hills, and the Hells Angels went on theirs at Altamont a couple of months

  • The best books of 2000

    Linda Nochlin

    Molly Nesbit’s Their Common Sense (Black Dog Press) isn’t exactly an art book—it’s not exactly a book even, in the usual sense. But in the unusual sense, Nesbit’s tome is a marvelous document, swinging briskly between the teaching of mechanical drawing in French schools and the arcanery of Duchamp & Co. It begins in very big print with Antonin Proust’s proposal that all French schoolchildren learn to draw and ends with a memorable still from Pabst’s Joyless Streets. In between? Children’s drawings (not the cute, creative ones, but disciplined, drafting lesson productions), some