Jenifer P. Borum

  • Robert Feintuch

    Although Robert Feintuch’s eight predominantly black paintings initially suggest the somber notes of a Gregorian chant, they eventually reveal the subtle complexity of a fugue. These works are very much about listening, but also about painting and the connection between the two. Six of the eight are massive, vertical rectangles, and they all contain between one and three images of disembodied ears that hover in various arrangements. Small, flat, and white, these ears and the random visual blips that surround them emerge from the dark fields with the anonymity of Xerox reproductions to become

  • Tom Duncan

    That Tom Duncan’s wall-mounted assemblages and larger, freestanding polychrome dioramas of found objects and materials resemble altar panels and reliquaries is appropriate, considering their function—to teach and preserve important events in the artist’s life by means of both symbol and narrative. At first glance,these busy scenes, populated by tiny figures, animals, buildings, and landscapes, recall the folk-art subgenre known as “memory painting,” yet a closer look reveals that, instead of gentle reminiscence, Duncan’s project is nothing less than an intense reimagining of his life, in which

  • Flèchemuller

    Flèchemuller, who enjoyed success in his native France during the ’70s and became known in New York by the mid ’80s for his quirky, childlike primitivism, has moved from painting images of objects to painting on objects themselves. Throughout his exploration of apparently “straight” painting, Flèchemuller thematic restlessness and emphasis on surface tactility were harbingers of a dissatisfaction with the limits of genre. This show marks an exciting new direction for the artist: the extension of his familiar painterly brushwork and scrawled hieroglyphs onto found objects and scrap assemblages.

  • Bill Traylor

    Self-taught, African-American artist Bill Traylor (1854–1947), who lived most of his life in Alabama, first as a slave and then as a farmhand, didn’t begin making art until he was 85 years old. Although he was only active between 1939 and ’42, he produced upwards of 1,500 works, mostly in pencil and poster paint on medium-sized pieces of found cardboard. Various twists of fate kept this corpus out of circulation until 1979, and its slow but steady exposure to art audiences since then has made Traylor a kind of cultural thermometer. In the early ’80s, his stark, silhouetted images of animals,

  • Arte Debole

    Arte Debole, which means “weak art,” originated in northern Italy in 1986, when artists from Turin and Milan began to draw inspiration from the contemporary intellectual movement “pensiero debole” (weak thought). An Italian variant of post-Modernism primarily associated with the writings of Gianni Vattimo, “pensiero debole” proposes weak or non-foundational thinking as a radical alternative to the structured, foundational thought that characterizes modern metaphysics. In art, this recipe constitutes yet another counter to the hegemony of Modernism, in which expressivity is replaced by rhetorical

  • Chema Cobo

    Although Chema Cobo has changed strategies several times since he was discussed as a Spanish representative of the Trans-avantgarde, he is still an eclectic painter, and he continues to investigate familiar (European) neo-Expressionist issues such as the collective loss of historical consciousness and national identity. This inquiry is as pertinent now as it was a decade ago, if not more so, considering the imminent unification of Europe, and the fragmentation of the Communist bloc. Yet Cobo has abandoned his previous neo-Expressionist style for an increasingly distanced, conceptual manner that

  • Zero Higashida

    It is difficult to believe that this ensemble of wood and steel sculptures, accompanied by several oil paintings, constitutes Zero Higashida’s first solo exhibition. Ranging from the quietly poetic to the powerfully expressive, his work is precocious; it not only feels wise beyond its years, it literally looks old. Indeed, Higashida’s sculptures of split wood and torn metal covered by dull black ink look like charred relics. They hover ambiguously between the natural and the industrial, the found and the constructed, the raw and the refined.

    Higashida’s sculptures unselfconsciously draw attention

  • Nicholas Pearson

    Nicholas Pearson’s formally taut coiled aluminum sculptures mark the culmination of a highly self-conscious exploration of sculptural process. Coming of age in the ’70s at Bennington College, Pearson rejected the Greenbergian legacy in favor of a Minimalist insistence on the artwork’s status as an actual object in space and time. While his early work invoked architectural forms as a way of pointing to sculpture’s origins, by the mid-’80s he had unpacked his essentially closed monoliths, building large, open, steel armatures, containing fired aluminum and pigmented concrete objects, as a means

  • Mia Westerlund Roosen

    Although Mia Westerlund Roosen’s oeuvre constitutes a sustained challenge to the hegemony of Minimalism, it would be a mistake to situate her work simply in terms of post-Minimalist polemics. Employing resin-coated fabric, and then poured and modeled concrete, she has countered Minimalism’s industrial facture with the insistently handmade, the calculated with the accidental, and the geometric with the irregular. As her work has matured, however, it has become less a reaction to specific art-historical precursors, and more the result of an internal logic generated by the artist’s experiments with

  • Robert Chambers

    Kinetic sculpture, having successfully weathered its dismissal as “Novelty art” by Clement Greenberg, is generally discussed in terms of two opposing Modernist traditions, grounded in conflicting attitudes toward technology. On the one hand, artists working in the Constructivist tradition of Naum Gabo and Lászlo Moholy-Nagy have celebrated the logic of the machine. On the other, those who partake of the Dadaist lineage associated with Marcel Duchamp, Francis Picabia, and more recently Jean Tinguely, have cynically opposed mechanization, satirizing technology by means of the irrational and the

  • Pepón Osorio

    Although Pepón Osorio has been making art for 15 years, this retrospective shows only his work from 1985 to the present. In this seven-year period, Osorio—who is a black Puerto Rican—has engaged in an ongoing dialogue with his own non-European cultural heritages, rather than with European-derived art history.

    Osorio’s investigation of culturally contextualized identity takes the form of mixed-media constructions, installations, and dance performances. The dialectic between individual and cultural identity that has consistently informed Osorio’s oeuvre is most evident in the works based on the

  • Viola Frey

    Subtle shifts in an artist’s oeuvre can be as easily missed as the movements of the hour hand across a clock’s surface; this is particularly the case with Viola Frey’s large-scale ceramic figures, which have evolved at a slow but steady pace since the late ’70s. Approximately one-and-a-half times bigger than the average viewer, Frey’s clunky effigies of middle-class Moms and Dads have an eerie presence: These towering zombies—hybrids of ceramic experimentation that combine Bay Area figuration, expressionistic brushwork, and a fauve palette—continue to evade esthetic categorization. Yet for all