Lars Bang Larsen

  • View of “Can Altay,” 2011.

    Can Altay

    The appearance of public art is often the result of top-down decision-making or capital-driven urban regeneration. In “COHAB: An Assembly of Spare Parts,” Can Altay reviewed the genre, examining its reception at street level by the people who live with it and, in turn, addressing what he evocatively called the “agency” of artworks that persist in our environment.

    As his object of study, Altay took Utrecht, a city famous (or notorious) in Holland for its more than four hundred public artworks. His exhibition was structured around “assembly points”—wooden units echoing the architecture of

  • Museumgoers wearing Carsten Höller’s Umkehrbrille (Upside-Down Goggles), 1994/2004, during the artist’s exhibition “Une exposition à Marseille,” Musée d’Art Contemporain, Marseille, France, 2005.

    “Carsten Höller: Experience”

    Part science-fair project, part theme-park attraction, and part Oldenburgian baroque, the installations of Carsten Höller are somatic adventures. The viewer may find herself immersed in a flood of strobe lights, a sensory-deprivation tank, or an inter-species exchange with reindeer, canaries, and houseflies. Whether Höller provides spiritual hallucinations and out-of-body experiences or simply a fun-house version of contemporary art, he never fails to deliver a spectacular, crowd-pleasing presentation that derives its frisson from positioning art audiences as guinea

  • Christian Schmidt-Rasmussen

    Christian Schmidt-Rasmussen is a painter with a demythologizing relationship to painting. Whether his canvases are ironic, cartoonlike, or deliberately fast and sloppy—or executed with some other style or strategy—they resist the medium’s historical gravity. On top of this, the image never stands alone, but is typically accompanied by narrative. In this midcareer survey, “Daywalker, giv slip” (Daywalker, Let Go), it is clear that blood is currently agreeable to his imagination. In an eponymous semiautobiographical diary that functioned as an exhibition catalogue, the artist confesses to having

  • Bjarne Melgaard, Untitled, 2007, oil on canvas, 78 3/4 x 118 1/8".

    Bjarne Melgaard: Jealous

    Even Edvard Munch’s madness is no match for the outpourings of Bjarne Melgaard.

    Even Edvard Munch’s madness is no match for the outpourings of Bjarne Melgaard. Compounding his work’s surplus of feeling and confessional tone, Melgaard proceeds in a multitude of media, from furniture and wax figures to video and text-based neo-expressionist painting—as well as the odd carved tree trunk. A midcareer survey, “Jealous” will present more than one hundred works tracking the past fifteen years of Melgaard’s artistic adventure. The emotional charge of his work will no doubt also surface in the coinciding film series

  • Matts Leiderstam, View (Papago Park), 2007, one of nine color photographs, 12 3/4 x 15".

    Matts Leiderstam: Seen from Here

    Matts Leiderstam’s exhibitions generate historical and visual networks as seductive as they are complex—forms of entanglement here incarnated in fifteen or so series.

    Matts Leiderstam’s exhibitions generate historical and visual networks as seductive as they are complex—forms of entanglement here incarnated in fifteen or so series. Take this show’s central work, Neanderthal Landscape, 2009–10: Based on the artist’s research in local archives, museums, and related sites, the installation traces the history of mid-nineteenthcentury Düsseldorf School painting and filters it through slide projections, computer animations, optical instruments, and the artist’s own paintings and drawings, producing delicate

  • “1ΔO”

    A number of recent exhibitions have reflected on 1960s psychedelic art, but “1∆0: Explorations psychédéliques en France, 1968 – ∞” took a radically different approach. Curators Axelle Blanc, Tiphanie Blanc, and Yann Chateigné Tytelman mounted a conceptual, counterintuitive exploration of the French side of psychedelia by not dwelling on the full-bodied experience we would automatically expect. In the CAPC’s imposing, sparingly lit exhibition hall, the beholder was instead met by a few documentary slide projections, a memorabilia time line that demonstrated how psychedelia was also the pathetic

  • Erick Beltrán

    Erick Beltrán’s “Serie Calculum” (Calculum Series)—“an essay about the concentration, the density and the creation of value,” as he puts it in the gallery press release—is a curio collection, compiled by the artist between 2006 and 2008. Because it refers back to idiosyncratic and arbitrary findings, a Wunderkammer such as this is meant to produce amazing and surprising effects. And since its premise is one of subjective categorization, it is also a way of actively generating provisional theories about our classification of the world and our writing of history.

    Apart from a few large maps and a

  • Christian Vind

    Tegn og underlige gerninger (En Silkeborg for tolkning)” (Signs and Strange Deeds [A Silkeborg Interpretation]) was a special kind of solo show, taking the form of a tribute to Asger Jorn (1914–73). The artist Christian Vind assumed the role of curator and “embedded exhibitor” to engage with the multifaceted Jorn, who, beyond his achievements as a painter, participated in the Situationist movement, collected art and artifacts, wrote art theory, and researched cultural history. Silkeborg Kunstmuseum was built around Jorn’s oeuvre and the thousands of works he collected from colleagues in the

  • Albert Mertz

    In contradiction to its title, “Duer ikke . . . Næste!” (No Good . . . Next!), this exhibition of works from the estate of Albert Mertz (1920–1990) stands out as the local show of the year. It was all there, or seemed to be: Respecting Mertz’s regard for process over the individual object, the curators—art historian Karin Hindsbo (the director of the nonprofit Den Frie Udstillingsbygning) and artist Jørgen Michaelsen—defied curatorial polish with a Dadaist hanging of collages, paintings, and objects that spread anarchically through the gallery and included notebooks as well as films and sound

  • Reiner Riedler, Schipiste (Ski Slope), 2005, color photograph, 25 x 31 1/2“, from the series ”Fake Holidays," 2004–2007.

    “All Inclusive: A Tourist World”

    For this exhibition, some thirty artists—including Yto Barrada, Elmgreen & Dragset, Christoph Keller, Lee Mingwei, Tracey Moffatt, and NL Architects—address tourism's encounters and economies and investigate the desires it projects and the traces it leaves behind.

    In an era when the entire world seems to be on the move, tourism points to the double bind underlying our culture's fetishization of both mobility and locality. And if tourism is increasingly just another form of standardized mass consumption, it also mirrors migration's logic of traveling to find a better life. For this exhibition, some thirty artists—including Yto Barrada, Elmgreen & Dragset, Christoph Keller, Lee Mingwei, Tracey Moffatt, and NL Architects—address tourism's encounters and economies and investigate the desires it projects and the traces it leaves

  • Jakob Kolding

    For his first solo museum exhibition in Denmark, Jakob Kolding introduced new elements to his oeuvre. Alongside delicate drawings, posters, and collages, he added large lambda prints of digital collages and fragile, site-specific sculptures that employ strategies of mixing and sampling similar to those of his graphic work. Placed on chipboard podiums and made of paper and little wooden sticks, the sculptures have a constructivist look but do not claim to be complete, thereby thwarting the constructivist impulse to create ideal or fundamental frameworks for social processes. Accordingly, the

  • Gego

    This first European retrospective of the German-born Venezuelan artist known as Gego (Gertrud Goldschmidt, 1912–1994) located her work at the intersection of international modernism and local vernacular, adding her name to the list of postwar Latin Americans—among them Mira Schendel, Lygia Clark, and Hélio Oiticica—whom recent art history has vindicated. Like that of Clark, Gego’s work teeters in a fascinating way between improvised materiality and styleless, eternal forms that involve spectator interaction and the surrounding space.

    After a relatively conventional practice of geometrical sculpture,