Lilly Lampe

  • picks March 24, 2017

    Louis Zoellar Bickett

    Recent exhibitions around the AIDS crisis have been critiqued as too focused on how art scenes were affected in major cities—how refreshing, then, to see an exhibition that hones in on a singular, rural experience. Louis Zoellar Bickett’s show is a room-size installation comprising a vast collection of ephemera related to loss in its many forms, with visual jokes and texts that imbue the pieces with the artist’s wry sense of humor. Bickett, based in Lexington, Kentucky, began his archive in 1972, at the age of twenty-two. Early items include branches from a beloved apple tree his mother cut down

  • picks October 08, 2015

    Bethany Collins

    In Bethany Collins’s subtle, elegant works on paper, the act of erasing leaves indexical marks like scars. Take Skin, 1968, 2015, a triptych in which a dictionary definition of the word is inscribed thrice and then rubbed out, leaving a different synonym on each sheet. The erased areas are visible as violent rips in the paper’s surface, leading the remaining words—pelt, hide, and peel—to read as aggressive actions more than nouns. The refuse of a similar work, including shreds of paper in addition to a Pink Pearl eraser, is collected in Bound, 1982, 2015, a sculptural pile that resembles

  • picks October 05, 2015

    John Riepenhoff

    There’s a knowing humor to this solo exhibition, which features more work by others than by the artist himself. Though plein-air paintings of the night sky by John Riepenhoff line two side walls, the center, and the majority of the space, is devoted to other people’s paintings. This would seem a thinly veiled group exhibition if the paintings weren’t mounted atop pairs of papier-mâché legs for Handler (all works 2015). These are all legs—humanoid torsos are forgone in favor of clamps and metal rods—but their surrogate status is cemented by the fact that they wear Riepenhoff’s own clothes and

  • picks August 31, 2015

    “After Utopia: Revisiting the Ideal in Asian Contemporary Art”

    All around Singapore this summer, signs announce the fiftieth anniversary of the city-state’s independence and, implicitly, celebrate the accomplishments of a financial center known for continually reconstructing itself. Inside the Singapore Art Museum, however, a wry note is struck by this exhibition, which features work that questions idealized states—physical, political, and emotional.

    Though the show overtly tackles utopia through ideas of Eden, the city, legacy, and issues surrounding the self, a powerful theme of air, and a lack thereof, is present throughout. Shannon Lee Castleman’s Jurong

  • picks January 31, 2014

    Alex Kvares

    Alex Kvares creates drawings whose delicate pencil strokes and ebullient colors belie the depraved scenes they depict. His representational works examine the slippery status of legacy, particularly of male political figures as he depicts them in a range of compromised positions. Hussars’ Picnic 1, 2014, for example, depicts pale European men in teal-and-mauve military dress engaged in sordid acts. A drummer watches as his comrades are decapitated or lie in puddles of their own vomit, while a triumphant general stands unmoved by the scene. The bright colors and cheerful quality of the figurative

  • picks December 12, 2013

    “New Jersey as Non-Site”

    The public’s perception of Land art is ruled by individual sites: a grid of steel poles in New Mexico, a curl of earth in a salt lake in Utah, saffron gates in Central Park, and so on. This exhibition, curated by Kelly Baum, successfully argues for a larger view that aggregates the work from a fixed period (between 1950 and 1975) and a single place (New Jersey) based on the confluence of influential artists and works created within the state. “New Jersey as Non-Site” celebrates the state’s gritty, desolate, and devastated aspects, staking a claim for a working-class Land art as opposed to that

  • picks April 05, 2013

    Andy Moon Wilson

    Andy Moon Wilson’s newest drawings are complex geometric designs that transfix the eye with depictions of the future. The twenty-two untitled works on paper in this exhibition, all roughly ten inches square, feature a diverse array of forms ranging from pixels to undulating pinwheels and intricate networks of laser beams, all rendered in the intense hues of gel pens. Though Moon Wilson employs some Op-art techniques, the impression of movement is carefully restrained; these drawings tease the eye with a hint of vibrating pattern, but they stop short of a fully disorienting effect. This forces

  • picks November 14, 2012

    “Paper Moon”

    “Paper Moon,” currently on view at Kennesaw State University’s Clayton Gallery, showcases artworks consisting of objects replicated to create new utility, to fulfill a fetish, or to cope with trauma. The title references the Depression-era song “It’s Only a Paper Moon,” referring to inexpensive backdrops for film and photography that were transformed into glamorous settings through a camera lens, offering temporary escape to a stricken audience. The works in “Paper Moon” successfully illustrate the myriad of ways in which mimetic production is not merely a replication of real objects but a means

  • picks September 20, 2012

    Nikita Gale

    Violence simmers beneath the surface of Nikita Gale’s latest exhibition, “1961.” Trained as an archaeologist, Gale here conducts a visual excavation of the titular year by juxtaposing mug shots of Civil Rights activists the Freedom Riders (culled from state archives in Mississippi) and found Kodacrome slides (from an antique store in White County, Georgia) with politically strident texts, which creates charged palimpsests of personal and historical imagery. The show features twenty diptychs that pair the slides with the mug shots. Gale has sliced and layered the latter so that each image reveals