Kerry James Marshall

  • “Charles White: A Retrospective”

    IN 2017, the Museum of Modern Art in New York presented a one-on-one exhibition pairing Charles White’s Black Pope (Sandwich Board Man), 1973, a large oil-wash-on-board drawing from its own collection, with a small drapery study on blue-tinted paper by Leonardo da Vinci, on loan from Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and the Royal Collection Trust. The show, curated by artist David Hammons, proposed White’s work as a continuation of the grand tradition of picture making, highlighting the skill, sensitivity, and attention to detail embodied by both works on view. White was, indeed, a master of

  • The Artists’ Artists

    To take stock of the past year, Artforum asked an international group of artists to select a single exhibition or event that most memorably captured their eye in 2017.

    ZOE LEONARD

    Rei Kawakubo (Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York) This exhibition was an ecstatic explosion of imagination and ingenuity with a radical reconsideration of form at its core. Much of Kawakubo’s work is joyful and energetic, yet it is far from escapist; her practice is deeply grounded in the social, aesthetic, and material history of clothing and in the importance we humans have assigned to appearance and comportment.

  • Marvel’s Black Panther

    Black Panther (issues 1 and 2) by Ta-Nehisi Coates (writer) and Brian Stelfreeze (artist), with Laura Martin (color artist). New York: Marvel, 2016. 36 and 28 pages, respectively.

    THIS WAKANDA looks a lot like Dubai to me. The African kingdom is, we are told, “the most technologically advanced society on the globe,” and yet in the new edition of Marvel’s Black Panther, the imperial guard is still using spears—albeit ones that also discharge some kind of electric ray. Likewise, hologram-projecting beads just don’t inspire the sense of awesomeness and wonder one might reasonably expect from

  • Kerry James Marshall

    But if you start out to “read” a comic, you are starting

    out wrong. . . . Comics are to be looked at first . . .

    —Samuel R. Delany, Silent Interviews: On

    Language, Race, Sex, Science Fiction, and

    Some Comics

    YOU CAN HIT HARD or be as sensitive and silly as you like. You can be immediate and topical in ways that are less forgiving in, say, painting. For freewheeling cultural and critical commentary, I cannot think of a more flexible platform than the daily newspaper comic. The loosely gridded, standard half page can accommodate an extraordinary variety of styles, subjects, and treatments.

  • THEIR FAVORITE EXHIBITIONS OF THE YEAR

    To take stock of the past year, Artforum asked an international group of artists to select the single image, exhibition, or event that most memorably captured their eye in 2012.

    RITA ACKERMANN

    Gang Gang Dance (September 22, Cameo Gallery, Brooklyn) If materialism is the unwanted fat on our spirits, Gang Gang Dance’s music is the blade that cuts it all off. Their sounds burn up that heaviness of need and greed and lift the spirits to other dimensions. A hundred years ago, Rudolf Steiner wrote The Philosophy of Freedom and feverishly lectured about protective space and other visionary ideas to

  • the best books of the year

    WHAT BOOKS STOOD OUT IN THE PAST TWELVE MONTHS? ARTFORUM ASKED A HANDFUL OF HISTORIANS, CRITICS, AND ARTISTS TO NAME THE TITLE (AND, IN SOME CASES, TITLES) THEY MOST REMEMBERED FROM THE PREVIOUS YEAR.

    Arthur C. Danto

    The title of Joseph Leo Koerner’s extraordinary study The Reformation of the Image (University of Chicago Press) refers to the way Martin Luther “reformed” religious pictures to make them consistent with the Second Commandment, thus protecting them against the wave of iconoclasm that swept Protestant churches in the early sixteenth century. Luther’s remedy consisted in treating images