Jennifer Allen

  • Palais de Tokyo and Le Plateau

    Enfin. On January 19, the long-anticipated Palais de Tokyo opens its doors as the world’s first art center to welcome visitors “from midday to midnight.” Located in the building adjacent to the Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris, the Palais is not just a late-night haven but “a site for contemporary creation”—literally. Complete with its own artist-in-residence program, it is described by directors Nicolas Bourriaud and Jérôme Sans as an interdisciplinary laboratory in tune with emerging global and local cultures. Architects Anne Lacaton and Jean-Philippe Vassal, inspired by the Djemaa

  • Central European Avant-Gardes: Exchange and Transformation, 1910–1930

    To re-create the itinerary of the historical avant-garde, LACMA curator Timothy O. Benson has opted for the scenic route from Berlin eastward, with stops at remote destinations like Lodz and Ljubljana. More than 250 works trace the passage from Expressionism to Constructivism in a politically volatile region. By focusing on multiple sites of intercultural exchange—from key exhibitions to cafés—the show demonstrates how mobility fostered the artists’ work, with the growth of rail travel making possible the first truly “glocal” aesthetic movement. Benson’s essay caps

  • Franz Ackermann

    Having painted the outside of the Kunsthalle Basel last summer, Franz Ackermann moves inside to explore, with his particular mix of psychedelic imagery and architectural form, metaphors of travel. “One Night in the Tropics” unfolds like sequences of a film, evoking emotions and illusions linked to destinations from Majorca to the Alps.

    Having painted the outside of the Kunsthalle Basel last summer, Franz Ackermann moves inside to explore, with his particular mix of psychedelic imagery and architectural form, metaphors of travel. “One Night in the Tropics” unfolds like sequences of a film, evoking emotions and illusions linked to destinations from Majorca to the Alps. Large-scale installation paintings and small-scale aquarelle “Mental Maps” are joined by an “ambient sculpture” thematizing temperature and distance. Despite the exotic itinerary, home is not neglected: Ackermann is inviting DJs and a band from his native Bavaria

  • Heike Baranowsky

    What’s wrong with this picture? The German artist Heike Baranowsky would be happy to explain the strange things going on in her videos. But the explanations—which amount to digital manipulation and changes in camera perspective—don’t seem to help. Baranowsky, who lives in Berlin and Los Angeles, is a master of deception. Her mesmerizing loops challenge our perception of time and space while remaining completely realistic. The artist seems to practice a mobile form of trompe l’oeil, hoping the spectator will at once suspect the truth and believe the lie.

    Take the video triptych Der

  • news December 11, 2001

    MARTIN CREED WINS TURNER PRIZE

    And the winner is... Martin Creed. The thirty-three-year-old Creed took away the Turner Prize last night, beating out Richard Billingham, Isaac Julien, and even bookie favorite Mike Nelson.

    And the winner is... Martin Creed. The thirty-three-year-old Creed took away the Turner Prize last night, beating out Richard Billingham, Isaac Julien, and even bookie favorite Mike Nelson. The jurists—Patricia Bickers, editor of Arts Monthly, Susan Ferleger Brades, director of the Hayward Gallery, Michael Archer, writer and arts critic, Greville Worthington, representative of the Patrons of New Art, and Sir Nicholas Serota, director of the Tate—reportedly took only five hours to make their unanimous decision. For the Turner Prize exhibition at the Tate Britain, Creed submitted the minimalist—and

  • picks December 07, 2001

    Leon Tarasewicz

    New Works by Leon Tarasewicz

    After a successful showing in the Polish pavilion at this year's Venice Biennale, Leon Tarasewicz has produced yet another striking installation. A sequence of individual canvases on the walls surround an immense painting/sculpture measuring three by four by four meters. This work, in fact, is composed of a stack of several paintings piled one on top of the other, seeping color from its edges. Tarasewicz's elevated painting uses the perspective of church frescoes while happily confounding the positions of god, artist, and viewer. A staircase on the side of this large-scale work allows the

  • picks December 07, 2001

    Bart Domburg

    Bart Domburg's Deceptive Serenity

    The Dutch painter Bart Domburg creates large-scale realist landscapes whose emptiness and serenity are at once seductive and misleading. Das große Fenster (The large window), 2001—a dramatic view from the inside of a mountaintop lodge—presents none other than the perspective enjoyed by Adolf Hitler at Berghof, his Bavarian mountain retreat. As the viewer contemplates the dictator's favorite panorama, the small frames that divide the picture window seem to transform the breathtaking view into an efficient military grid. The tension between the natural and the domesticated turns up also in Berlin,

  • news December 05, 2001

    AMMANN’S LAST SHOW

    On the occasion of the tenth anniversary of the Museum für Moderne Kunst (MMK) in Frankfurt, the Neue Zürcher Zeitung's Claudia Spinelli speaks with director Jean-Christophe Ammann, who will be passing the directorship over to Udo Kittelmann at the end of this year.

    AMMANN’S LAST SHOW: On the occasion of the tenth anniversary of the Museum für Moderne Kunst (MMK) in Frankfurt, the Neue Zürcher Zeitung's Claudia Spinelli speaks with director Jean-Christophe Ammann, who will be passing the directorship over to Udo Kittelmann at the end of this year. The sixty-two-year-old Ammann, who orchestrated the construction of the MMK under Hans Hollein's design, reflects upon his thirteen-year commitment to the museum. “My task was to build a collection for this city and the people here, and thus to make a contribution to a new identity,” says Ammann. Ample evidence

  • news November 19, 2001

    MUSEUMS IN THE NEWS IN EUROPE

    MUSEUMS IN THE NEWS IN EUROPE

    In France, the strike by workers at national museums and monuments continues though strikers have stopped blocking the Louvre just in time for the exhibition “La Peinture comme crime, où la part maudite de la modernité” (Painting as crime, or the accursed share of modernity), which runs until January 14, 2002. Libération's Elisabeth Lebovici considers (in French) how artistic limits and violence are explored in the show, which takes its title from Austrian artist Rudolf Schwarzkogler. In addition to Goya and Godard, the exhibition focuses on Viennese Actionism, and includes documentation of

  • news November 17, 2001

    MODERNA MUSEET TO CLOSE TEMPORARILY

    MODERNA MUSEET TO CLOSE TEMPORARILY

    The Moderna Museet in Stockholm announced this week that major building repairs will require it to close for eighteen months. The news has come as a surprise since the museum building, designed by the Spanish architect Rafael Moneo, opened only three years ago as part of a cluster of museums on the island of Skeppsholmen.

    Since June, employees have been complaining of headaches. Investigations showed that the museum, which is built into a seaside hill, has been overtaken with mold. While the cafeteria has already been closed and staff are now working out of temporary offices, the museum will

  • picks November 17, 2001

    Olafur Eliasson

    The Architecture of Nature

    Water, temperature, and wind are the basic ingredients for a storm, a blizzard, or a light rain. Olafur Eliasson, however, uses them to make artworks. His latest installation begins with a thin wisp of steam escaping from the gallery walls. As visitors enter to discover its source, they pass through a dizzying spiral tunnel before reaching a fog machine that sits in a cardboard shrine. Here, a thin line of fog swirls in an open canister like a mini-tornado before disappearing into a maze of ventilation ducts that carry it eventually outside the gallery. Eliasson’s fascination with spiral forms

  • news November 15, 2001

    THE TURNER PRIZE, PAUL MCCARTHY IN THE NEWS

    THE TURNER PRIZE, PAUL MCCARTHY IN THE NEWS

    The Turner Prize exhibition, which opened last week at Tate Britain, has already produced a scandal. Following in the footsteps of Damien Hirst's cows, Chris Ofili's elephant dung, and Tracey Emin's bed, Martin Creed's minimal and literal contribution, Work Number 227: The Lights Going On and Off, 2000, proves to be this year's favorite work to hate. In one overview, The Guardian's Fiachra Gibbons considers the initial critical reactions to Creed. Adrian Searle, however, claims to have seen it all before—not only Creed's contribution but also works by fellow nominees Richard Billingham, Mike

  • news November 09, 2001

    EUROPEAN NEWS DIGEST

    EUROPEAN NEWS DIGEST

    ECONOMIC CONCERNS LINGER IN COLOGNE: Despite receiving 14,000 visitors at the opening, concern about the impact of the slowing world economy lingered at the thirty-fifth ART Cologne art fair, which closed last week. Although the fair was three days shorter this year than last, according to a post-fair report in FAZ.NET (in German), the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung’s online news site, the number of visitors was nearly the same at 65,000. The report also noted, however, a definite sense of reserve evident among buyers, with big expenditures being weighed more carefully than they might have been

  • news November 02, 2001

    TADAO ANDO, AUCTION RULES, AND MUSEUM STANDARDS IN FRANCE

    TADAO ANDO, AUCTION RULES, AND MUSEUM STANDARDS IN FRANCE

    ANDO WILL BUILD FONDATION PINAULT: François Pinault has selected the Japanese architect Tadao Ando to design the Fondation Pinault. The new foundation for contemporary art will be built near a former Renault factory on Île Seguin to house Pinault’s ever-expanding private collection. Ando, who also designed the new “Teatro” complex for Giorgio Armani in a converted Nestlé factory in Milan, faced tough competition from Steven Holl, Rem Koolhaas, Dominique Perrault, Manuelle Gautrand, and the Dutch collective MVRDV. Le Monde’s Frédéric Edelmann reports on the transformation of Île Seguin, popularly

  • Ueli Etter

    “Agony Hall,” “Big Gender Junction,” and “Sentimental Library” are just a few of the sites to see in Ueli Etter's The Park/Der Park, 1997–2001. The Swiss artist, who splits his time between Berlin and Tel Aviv, has been refining the project through exhibitions over the past two years, continually transforming its appearance with an array of multimedia installations, graphics, and drawings. A truly utopian undertaking, the park exists nowhere beyond the elaborate planning stage; its landscape is filled, not with greenery, but with a wealth of fantasy monuments, roads, and buildings, rendered in

  • news October 22, 2001

    EUROPEAN NEWS DIGEST

    EUROPEAN NEWS DIGEST

    Is fashion taking over the art world? To mark the recent opening of the exhibition “Radical Fashion” at the Victoria & Albert Museum, The Observer's Deyan Sudjic explored fashion's growing importance in the contemporary art world, citing Gucci's sponsorship of Richard Serra at the Venice Biennale and the new Prada shop designed by Rem Koolhaas for the Guggenheim Museum in New York. Sudjic argues that fashion has become a dominant cultural force because of its ability to combine high culture with popular art. “What else but a fashion show can bring together a football star, a rapper, an artist,

  • picks October 22, 2001

    4Free

    • The Art of Freedom

    In this exhibition, the nonprofit platform for contemporary art BüroFriedrich has brought together seventeen artists and eight artist groups to explore the concept of freedom so frequently invoked in the rhetoric of the current war on terrorism. Taking its cue from a shift in the notion of artistic freedom away from the rebellion of the 1960s toward today’s more subtle, playful forms of resistance, the work on view here betrays a certain modesty. Greg Fiering & Matt Luem’s video installation Unholy Solution, Event # 2, 2001, for example, reminiscent of Cameron Jamie’s work, features teenage

  • picks October 22, 2001

    Annika Ström

    • The Rock Star Life, Swedish Style

    Swedish artist Annika Ström marked gallerist Alte Gerhardsen’s move from Oslo to Berlin by creating a fresh music video for his new gallery space. Ström, who has been making her own music ever since she discovered the programmable mini-synthesizer a few years back, explores European fantasies of the rock star life, territory also mapped by Georgina Starr and Bob & Roberta Smith. Here, she has extended her repertoire with six songs that pay homage to the clash of sentimental love with everyday reality. Banal yet sticky lyrics—for example, "When I go there / When I see that / I think of you”—accompany

  • news October 19, 2001

    GUARDED OPTIMISM AT EUROPEAN ART FAIRS

    GUARDED OPTIMISM AT EUROPEAN ART FAIRS

    Despite the gloomy international political situation, the 28th Foire Internationale d’Art Contemporain (FIAC) opened in Paris last week with a strong turnout. A total of 163 galleries are participating, with eighty-one galleries from France and eighty-two from abroad, including ten American galleries. 80,000 visitors were expected to attend the fair.

    Art Forum Berlin successfully closed its sixth edition a week earlier with only five gallery cancellations, most notably Gagosian in London. Despite concern that US military operations would begin during the fair, daily attendance numbers actually

  • news September 27, 2001

    INTELLECTUALS RESPOND TO CRISIS IN EUROPEAN PRESS

    INTELLECTUALS RESPOND TO CRISIS IN EUROPEAN PRESS

    In the wake of the attacks in the United States, politics has overtaken the usual cultural criticism and essays found in the feuilletons of German newspapers. Die Zeit has published several essays by leading intellectuals and writers from around the world. In “The End of All Distinction,” Harvard political philosopher Seyla Benhabib claims the attacks have reduced the reality of politics to apocalyptic symbols, while the American pragmatist Richard Rorty warns against the likely loss of civil rights and liberties in the fight against terrorism in “The Militarization of America.” Slavoj Zizek,