Katie Geha

  • picks March 08, 2019

    2019 Atlanta Biennial

    The American Music Show was a weekly public-access television show produced in Atlanta from 1981 to 2005. Its inclusion in the city’s biennial is characteristic of the loose, improvisational, and ambitious exhibition of twenty-one artists from the Southeast. Curators Daniel Fuller and Phillip March Jones seem to be riffing on certain themes, as if they, too, were creating a late-night broadcast for an audience of ten. Their approach to the show as a bricolage reflects the techniques of some of the artists, such as Carol John, whose Smoke, 2018, a painting of patterned squiggles surrounded by

  • picks April 18, 2018

    Jamie Bull and Lauren Clay

    There is a distinct pleasure in the materials, color, and play of perception in “Porthole Portico,” an exhibition whose title pairs two unlikely architectural elements to describe the work of Jaime Bull and Lauren Clay. Opulence is evident in both artists’ work and in its placement here in Atlanta’s new house gallery. Enter the vestibule, and Wavy Petit Trianon (all works 2018), Clay’s site-specific marbled wallpaper complements the gray checkerboard floor and picture window, highlighting the architecture of the space. Directly below the crystal chandelier is Bull’s strange silver-foam sculpture,

  • picks November 10, 2017

    Cosmo Whyte

    In his exhibition “Starting a Bush Fire,” Jamaican-born, Atlanta-based artist Cosmo Whyte presents sculptures made from found materials, photographs, and a series of drawings that circulate around the theme of the dislocated body. Specifically, the artist’s work conjures the history of the displacement of black and brown people from the slave trade, the Great Migration, and the global refugee crisis. Hanging high on the wall in the foyer is Guess Who Is Coming to Dinner, 2017, a collection of orange life jackets thickly adorned with mussel shells. Farther into the space, the arresting photograph

  • picks February 17, 2017

    Lonnie Holley

    Lonnie Holley’s solo exhibition “I Snuck Off the Slave Ship” is a miniretrospective of sorts, featuring some twenty works from as early as 1994, including assemblages, steel sculptures, and paintings on paper. At a time when civil rights are still under attack, the works read as poetic and powerfully charged. Take, for example, The Water Fountain, 2015, a beat-up fountain with two coat hangers emerging from the spout like a Calder sculpture, one black, one white. Or Church and State, 2014, a flag stand with a wooden crucifix hanging from its brass eagle. There is a plainspoken directness to the

  • picks November 03, 2016

    Jill Frank

    The title of Jill Frank’s exhibition “Nothing Ventured // Nothing Gained” appears in cursive script tattooed across the firm chest of a young man sitting in a still body of water, red solo cup in hand, for Beach Pose (Sunburn & Solo Cup), 2015. So begins the artist’s treatise on young adults, their cool reserve and their searing emotions. Whether bored or fraught with regret, the affect of each subject reads clearly. “Everyone Who Woke Up at the Yellow House,” 2016, a series of three double-sided portraits hanging in the center of the gallery, features teenagers the night after a house party:

  • picks September 28, 2016

    Siebren Versteeg

    Siebren Versteeg’s “Middle Ages” is a new take on an old tale: Narcissus at the pond, gazing at his reflection, struck and stuck by his own beauty. Three crude steel figures retrofitted with web cameras as eyes view the exhibition and its visitors, producing generative screen-based content. Stand in front of Seer (all works 2016) and a monitor will present pictures of people that resemble your guise. The Secret faces a white wall, mysteriously sourcing images of beaches and blue skies. While Surfer (With Head), with a towel thrown over its top, gazes down at an electronic tablet in its hand,

  • picks March 02, 2015

    “Pratfall Tramps”

    The late comedian Gilda Radner once referred to life as the “delicious ambiguity.” Such inexactness and Radner’s legacy of laughs act as a benevolent guiding spirit for “Pratfall Tramps,” an exhibition curated by Rachel Reese that features the work of four female artists who uncover the nuances of comedic tropes. From the embarrassment of a joke that bombs, to the elasticity of the vaudevillian romp, to the gestures of a late-night host, this show elucidates the literary qualities of jokes. Jamie Isenstein’s looping video Infinite Disco Soft-Shoe, 2002–2004, features the artist in a top hat and

  • picks June 17, 2012

    Lane Hagood

    The spirit of the early-twentieth-century painter James Ensor presides over Lane Hagood’s concise exhibition of three paintings in “Eyeball Rug, Hand Painting, and Mountains Painting.” One canvas features a variety of bizarre eyeballs decoratively arranged on a rug, while, in another work, rough brushstrokes form the crevices of a dry cracked hand. In the third, a naively painted mountainscape is rendered in washy shades of blues and whites. In an accompanying text, Hagood frames how his paintings should be considered by playfully inhabiting the voice of Ensor. (“Now I must tell you about this

  • picks November 14, 2011

    Colby Bird

    Parts of wooden chairs, small blocks of broken granite, brightly painted flattened cardboard boxes, a photograph of Easter eggs, and fruit, both real and plastic, are largely what Colby Bird’s current exhibition is made of. While all of these materials retain and assert their identities as everyday things in the world, Bird proposes that the object’s function as art is determined less by its media than by its proximity to other works and by the viewer’s own subjectivity.

    Bird presents these objects in rigorously arranged tableaux that make them feel effortless and light in their relationship to

  • picks January 05, 2011

    Vija Celmins

    This past summer, at McKee Gallery in New York, Vija Celmins exhibited her most recent body of work—tablets of brushed gray wood fashioned to look like the handheld chalkboards that were their real-life counterparts. Placing the found and the made side by side, and blurring the line between the real and the imagined, Celmins invited the viewer to look closer. A show up now, titled “Vija Celmins: Television and Other Disasters 1964–1966,” is a strong prequel to the McKee exhibition. Displaying a slightly different gray tablet, this exhibition features some of her earliest muted paintings, works

  • interviews October 26, 2010

    Ry Rocklen

    The Los Angeles–based artist Ry Rocklen was the first artist-in-residence at the recently opened Visual Arts Center, a project and exhibition space managed by the University of Texas at Austin. For his installation ZZZ’s, Rocklen used everyday objects such as a bed frame, a fan, folded sheets, and wind chimes to suggest a space of veneration and domesticity. The exhibition is on view until December 18.

    THE INSTALLATION is very much about material presence. I knew I wanted to work with items that help you get your zzz’s; there are so many of them in the world. For instance, an old mattress found

  • picks September 10, 2010

    Beryl Korot

    In this miniretrospective, Beryl Korot, cofounder and editor of the seminal 1970s video periodical Radical Software, demonstrates her career-long commitment to technology, language, and the history that binds the two together. Korot’s video pieces on view anchor the technologies of the medium, and in particular animation, to an older practice—the first computer on earth, so to speak: the hand loom. In Babel: The 7 Minute Scroll, 2006, Korot creates an animated hand-scroll weaving that depicts, with text and images, the movement from an ancient alphabet-centered language to a more contemporary

  • picks June 17, 2010

    Ben Ruggiero

    The legacy of Hudson River School painter Frederic Church haunts Ben Ruggiero’s latest exhibition of experiments in photography. A picture in the entryway of this show depicts an orientation room at Olana, Church’s home on the Hudson. Plastic chairs are neatly lined up, facing a flat-screen TV that is placed in front of a pull-down projection screen. A defunct projector hangs from the ceiling. Paused on the TV is an image of Church’s majestic landscape painting The Icebergs, 1861, which was lost for over a century before being rediscovered in 1979. The technological apparatuses of projector, TV

  • picks April 03, 2010

    Katy Horan

    Katy Horan’s recent works on paper examine the gesture—arms flailing, or a head cocked to one side, or legs splayed in the air. Yet the figures depicted in “Lady Monsters” remain more oblique than their movements. Though these ladies are dressed in bustles and lace headdresses, to assume that they are polite would be erroneous. One might infer that the figures in pieces like Seer or Handmaidens (all works 2009), swallowed as they are in intricate lace patterns, are Victorian conjurers, Furies from a Greek vase, or other witchy characters. They seethe with a slight mystery and darkness that bring