Julie Caniglia

  • “The Architecture of Reassurance”

    Some thought the Walker Art Center opening its doors to Mickey Mouse was a dark day for Art. Museums, however, have been edging into pop culture for years, though, at least since the Museum of Modern Art’s “High and Low” exhibit, and more recently in efforts such as the Whitney’s show on Warhol and fashion. It turns out that the real question was not what Mickey will do to Art, but what the museum had to say about Mickey.

    “The Architecture of Reassurance: Designing the Disney Theme Parks” must have presented a unique challenge in this regard. How to take apart “the method behind the magic” of

  • Jessica Craig-Martin and Lucas Michael

    Though Jessica Craig-Martin and Lucas Michael were billed as a team, there wasn’t much evidence of collaboration in this recent show of their photography. “Each artist claims authorship to their [sic] respective series,” the press release noted, and Craig-Martin’s thirty-five medium-format prints from New York’s nightlife circuit, covering three gallery walls, were neatly set off from Michael’s nineteen photos (closer to the domestic front in subject matter), which occupied the other two walls. While this allowed for convenient comparisons between the public and the private realms, it made the

  • Tony Feher

    So unassuming as to be almost beyond notice, Tony Feher’s show at one of Chelsea’s less spectacularly frosty galleries was actually brimming with small-scale, subtle pleasures. The central piece, initially glimpsed through the gallery window and resembling more than anything else an average-looking chunk of carved marble squatting on the floor, turned out to be merely several stacked Styrofoam forms of the sort used to pack TVs, stereos, and such, like a cheeky, no-budget take on Rachel Whiteread. Another piece consisted of eighteen unlabeled tin cans and eighteen small blocks of wood, arranged

  • Tracey Moffatt: Badlands

    The films and photographs of Australian artist Tracey Moffatt can cut close to the bone, referencing her childhood and Aboriginal heritage, but she also travels far afield, citing such disparate influences as Japanese cinema and Life magazine. Moffatt gets her first big New York show at Dia with “Badlands,” which includes two new and somewhat contrasting commissions: a video installation, her first, featuring a surfer as a representation of contemporary Australia; and Up in the Sky, a series of twenty-five photographs taken in and around the town of Broken Hell in the Australian outback. Also

  • Alexis Smith: My Favorite Sport

    Alexis Smith, based in LA and known for her preoccupation with Hollywood (her name, after all, is borrowed from a B-movie star), shifts her interest to points east: more specifically, to Ohio State’s venerated football Buckeyes. The result of Smith’s recent residency at the Wexner Center, “My Favorite Sport” features an installation of gridiron memorabilia—including an OSU casket for the die-hard fan—that the artist culled mostly from the university’s collection. Eight major works and three recent pieces about sports and obsession are also on view, making the show especially timely in light of

  • Toshio Shibata

    Toshio Shibata’s photographs of Japanese landscapes make the old Man-vs.-Nature saw fresh again with rigorous, nearly abstract compositions that often eliminate the sky from view—a technique that imparts a creepy sense of otherworldliness to such things as dams and erosion-control structures. Curated by Staci Boris and Kevin E. Consey, this show at Chicago’s MCA consists of two dozen black-and-white prints, the result of Shibata’s training the lenses of his large-format cameras on American scenery for the first time. The foreignness (for Shibata) of Oregon’s Columbia River Valley, parts of Texas,

  • Joseph Beuys Mutiples

    Though Joseph Beuys’ work remains better known overseas, this show, organized by Walker associate curator Joan Rothfuss, may change all that. On view will be some 300 of the artist’s 600-plus multiples, which Beuys regarded as “vehicles” for the dissemination of his ideas. A host of initiatives surrounding the work are planned to flesh out the artist’s sometimes obscure theories: the first English-language edition of Jörg Schellman’s catalogue raisonné of the multiples; a Beuys website (what would the artist himself have done with the Web?); an “Information Office” based on his 1972 Documenta

  • Perry Hoberman

    As noted in another publication, the title of Perry Hoberman’s recent show, “Sorry We’re Open,” wryly commented on the flight of many galleries from SoHo and on the neighborhood’s ongoing mall-ification. But if the SoHo crowd is shifting from cutting-edge cognoscenti to middle-of-the-road suburbanites, then so much the better for Hoberman. His latest installation not only addressed the workaday lives of the latter—remarkable enough in itself—but was actually accessible and populist, as opposed to snide and ironic.

    A mutant version of the most average office imaginable, “Sorry We’re Open” was not

  • “No Place (Like Home)”

    As implied by the cover image of its catalogue—a bird’s-eye-view of a suburban housing development, juxtaposed with a separate picture of clouds—“no place (like home)” aimed to unmoor comfortable museum-goers from their familiar notions of home and set them floating off to other worlds. But this was no flight of fancy; curator Richard Flood’s mission was to show the irrevocable global effects of technology, geopolitics, and the media. Then there’s social alienation and political upheaval, racial conflicts and cultural displacement, the lure of nostalgia, the vagaries of memory, the powerful

  • “The Photomontages of Hannah Höch”

    Though her career stretched into the ’70s, Hannah Höch is best known, at least on this side of the Atlantic, as the sole female member of the bad-boy club that constituted Berlin Dada. While this show featuring more than 100 photomontages—the first retrospective of Höch’s work in the US—gives an attentive nod to her Dada years, it focuses mostly on the work she made after, and in spite of, her association with the group. Monumental pieces such as Dada Rundschau (Dada panorama, 1919) and Schnitt mit dem Küchenmesser Dada durch die letzte Weimarer Bierbauchkultur epoche Deutschlands (Cut with the

  • “Beat Culture And The New America: 1950–1965”

    More about artifacts than art, “Beat Culture and the New America,” curated by Lisa Phillips, includes a plethora of first editions, journals, manuscripts, ’zines, chapbooks, posters, letters, and jazz-album jackets, all entombed in vitrines. There are also TV clips and films, recorded poetry, and documentations of happenings, as well as a reading gallery stocked with shiny editions of Beat lit. An elaborate, wall-sized timeline charts significant events in the Beat world against significant events in the world at large, while newsprint flyers give the lowdown on the New York, Los Angeles, and