John C. Welchman

  • “Paul McCarthy’s Low Life Slow Life”

    Fresh from cutting a cultural swathe across Europe with shows in Munich, Stockholm, and London, among other cities, Paul McCarthy returns to his home base, California, but disguised as a curator. Organized in collaboration with Wattis director Jens Hoffmann, whose recent curatorial gymnastics have pounded new life into flabby exhibition protocols, the show gathers and refracts McCarthy’s early memories of art, from roughly 1960 to 1970. (A second part, opening February 2009, brings us up to date.) Look for experimental films (by Andy Warhol, Stan Brakhage,

  • View of “Allan Kaprow: Art as Life,” 2006, Haus der Kunst, Munich. Photo: Wilfried Petzi.

    Allan Kaprow

    CREATIVELY BESET FROM THEIR INCEPTION by the innocence, license, and incipient counterculturalism of the second wave of America’s post–World War II avant-garde, Allan Kaprow’s actions and reflections on the compounding of art and life shuttled between the comestible and the laborious, the sonic and the tactile, home and work. While clearly a prophet of aesthetic relationality—his practice anticipating almost everything suggested in relational art’s much-touted, post-neo-avant-garde reformulation (including, perhaps, its political diffidence)—Kaprow’s braiding of chance and designation


    THIRTY-TWO DOWN, 333 TO GO. Back in 2000, Mike Kelley unveiled Extracurricular Activity Projective Reconstruction #1 (A Domestic Scene), the first installment of an ongoing, gargantuan serial work that will eventually comprise 365 video pieces, each with its own set, or sculptural component. Next month, “Day Is Done,” Kelley’s first solo show at Gagosian Gallery in New York, will assemble an ambitious multiplex of thirty-one videos and associated sculptural “stations” (Extracurricular Activity Projective Reconstructions # 2–32, 2004–2005) that the artist has made since.

    The exhibition reactivates

  • Lines in the Desert

    Peter King and his company, Going Through Stages, have developed a reputation during the last year or so for staging conceptually complex and challenging performance pieces. Recent productions include Axes Edge, 1990, which took on the relation between architecture and performance, and The Butterfly Effect, 1990, (staged at the Melbourne city baths), which attempted to wrap speech and gesture around the scientific theories of randomness.

    The “lines in the desert” that name this production are notated in a double-edge x on the floor of the gallery space; under the supervision of codesigner Peter