Mara Hoberman

  • Kamrooz Aram, Untitled (Arabesque Composition), 2021, oil, wax crayon, and pencil on linen, 54 × 48''.
    picks October 08, 2021

    Kamrooz Aram

    “Un objet, un geste” (An object, a gesture,) Kamrooz Aram’s first solo exhibition in France, calls into question critical hierarchies perpetuated by qualifiers like decorative and non-Western. In the largest painting on view, Untitled (Arabesque Composition in Lapis Lazuli), 2019, curvaceous forms in contrasting shades of brilliant blue are surrounded by a border of untouched linen support. As in other paintings from the Iranian-born artist’s “Arabesque” series (2018–), Aram here recasts so-called ornamental flourishes as the main event while creating a frame—typically, a marker of value that

  • View of Emeka Ogboh’s Migratory Notes, 2021, five-channel video, color, sound, 6 minutes 59 minutes.
    picks October 01, 2021

    Emeka Ogboh

    Known for works addressing community and migration through food, music, and video, Emeka Ogboh offers a multisensorial feast with “Stirring the Pot.” For Ámà 2.0, all works 2021, the artist arranged twelve speakers into a large circle, each speaker playing a different single voice performing the same Igbo folk song. From the room’s center, where large cushions covered in Akwete textiles beckon, the dozen voices merge into an immersive harmony. Walk right up to one speaker, however, and a unique voice breaks through and drowns out the rest. This interplay of solo and choral voices beautifully

  • Alain Jacquet, La danse (The Dance), 1995, digital print and acrylic on canvas, 5' 6 7⁄8" × 11' 5".

    Alain Jacquet

    Born near Paris, Alain Jacquet decamped to New York in 1964 in his mid-twenties. Seen as a French artist in his adoptive home and lumped in with American Pop by the French, Jacquet, who died in 2008, was ultimately underappreciated on both sides of the Atlantic. The recent miniretrospective “Jeux de Jacquet” (Jacquet’s Games) framed the artist’s best-known work—paintings and silk screens inspired by Édouard Manet’s Le déjeuner sur l’herbe, 1863—within a career-long exploration of how reproduction (manual and mechanical) reveals the continual intertwining of abstraction and representation.

    The

  • Kafka et l'écureuil (Kafka and the Squirrel), 2019, oil on canvas, 28 3/4 x 21 1/4".
    picks June 13, 2021

    Gérard Garouste

    Although he first showed at Leo Castelli in New York and Rudolphe Zwirner in Cologne during the 1980s, Gérard Garouste remains best known in his native France. His dreamy, distorted, and sometimes garish figurative canvases evoke the literary worlds of Cervantes and Ovid along with religious themes from his rigorous Talmud studies. The artist’s whimsical painterly style and spiritual, folkloric, and historical scenes also recall fellow Franco-Jewish painter Marc Chagall.

    Many of the twenty-six large oils currently on view here feature Jewish subjects, including Franz Kafka, philosopher Gershom

  • Interior of the Bourse de Commerce – Pinault Collection. © Tadao Ando Architect & Associates, Niney et Marca Architectes, Agence Pierre-Antoine Gatier. Photo: Patrick Tourneboeuf.
    slant May 20, 2021

    Tour de Bourse

    MAY 19 WAS A HISTORIC DAY IN FRANCE. After six months of Covid-19 lockdown, restaurants, cinemas, theaters, and museums finally reopened to the public. In Paris, a hub for fine dining and fine art, this major step toward normalcy was feted like a national holiday as institutions including the Louvre, Musée d’Orsay, Centre Pompidou, and Musée d’Art Moderne welcomed back visitors. Adding to the excitement, the city will gain a brand-new shrine to contemporary art on May 22: François Pinault’s collection at the Bourse de Commerce.

    The Bourse seems uniquely well suited to house works acquired by the

  • Kenjiro Okazaki, 背後にはなにも無い / At the crossroads (tried to flag a ride), 2020, acrylic on canvas, 9 1/2 x 7."
    picks May 03, 2021

    Kenjiro Okazaki

    Kenjiro Okazaki is perhaps best known in the US for his 2007 collaboration with Trisha Brown, I love my robots, in which his custom-designed cyborgs performed Brown’s choreography. If the Japanese artist’s latest works, small abstract paintings from his series “ZeroThumbnails,” 2005–, seem a far cry from mechanized dancers, they still inhabit the nexus of technology and art. The sixteen paintings on view (all works 2020) are each based on at least one work from the art-historical cannon, their models ranging from Renaissance paintings to Greek sculptures and nineteenth-century Japanese woodcuts.

  • Jean Claracq, Dikhotomia, 2021, oil on wood, 33 7⁄8 × 51 1⁄4".

    Jean Claracq

    Jean Claracq paints contemporary leisure scenes with the style, technique, and skill of a Renaissance master. His subjects are not religious or royal but do represent a kind of millennial nobility. The stylish young men who populate his oeuvre are Instagram influencers, whose posts the artist pilfers to create digital collages and, finally, meticulous oil-on-wood paintings. Claracq renders his subjects and their twenty-first-century accoutrements (smartphones, baseball caps, laptops, running shoes, sports cars) with great detail and without visible brushstrokes. In addition to referencing the

  • Victor Brauner, La rencontre du 2 bis, rue Perrel (The Meeting at 2 bis, rue Perrel), 1946, oil on canvas, 33 1⁄2 × 41 3⁄8". © ADAGP, Paris.

    Victor Brauner

    IN THE CATALOGUE for the Victor Brauner retrospective at the Musée d’Art Moderne de Paris, director Fabrice Hergott describes an institutional mission “to draw the public’s attention to the existence of work by nearly forgotten great artists.” Brauner—whose first and last major retrospective was in 1972 at the Musée National d’Art Moderne—certainly fits this bill, having been all but written off as a minor Surrealist. As reintroduced by curator Sophie Krebs (with assistance from Jeanne Brun, Nadia Chalbi, and Camille

  • View of “Daniel Buren and Philippe Parreno: Simultanément, travaux in situ et en mouvement” (Simultaneously, Works in Situ and in Motion), 2020–21.

    Daniel Buren and Philippe Parreno

    In 1985 Pontus Hultén founded the Institut des Hautes Études en Arts Plastiques (Institute for Advanced Studies in Fine Arts), an alternative art school in Paris modeled after the Bauhaus and Black Mountain College. Daniel Buren was among IHEAP’s original faculty, and Philippe Parreno was one of his students. In the years since, Parreno has often cited Buren’s influence, and Buren included Parreno in an exhibition he curated in 2007. Their work has been shown together on several occasions, and as of 2016 they are both represented by Kamel Mennour. But the recent show at the gallery’s newest

  • Pierre Seinturier, The promise they’ve made, 2020, oil on canvas, 57 1/2 x 35''.
    picks March 24, 2021

    Pierre Seinturier

    Working with thinned oils, Pierre Seinturier paints moody scenes whose semitransparent muted greens, browns, and blues recall Charles Burchfield’s watercolors. But whereas Burchfield’s American landscapes are mostly devoid of people, Seinturier’s Americana-infused settings typically feature at least one figure who is simultaneously mundane and suspicious. Across the sixteen paintings on view (all 2021), this sense of ambiguity is enhanced by low light (Seinturier has a penchant for dawn, dusk, and shadows cast by tree canopies), voyeuristic perspectives, and zinger titles that yield more questions

  • Oscar Murillo, manifestation, 2019–20, oil, oil stick, cotton thread, and graphite on velvet, canvas, and linen, 8' 6 3/8" × 10' 3" . From the series “manifestation,” 2018–.

    Oscar Murillo

    Since March 2020, amid worldwide Covid-19 shelter-in-place orders, Oscar Murillo has been working out of an improvised studio in his hometown of La Paila, Colombia. But if the pandemic abruptly disrupted the artist’s otherwise peripatetic practice, the paintings it inspired feel far from confined. Murillo’s latest works, part of an ongoing series titled “manifestation,” 2018–, flout lockdown doom and gloom with their energetic gestures, vibrant colors, and monumental scale. Exuding painterly confidence with the majesty of Joan Mitchell’s landscapes and the urgency of Jean Dubuffet’s scratch

  • View of “Laurent Le Deunff: The Mystery of Sculpting Cats,” 2021.
    picks February 06, 2021

    Laurent Le Deunff

    Under a slanted glass roof in the gallery's back room, Laurent Le Deunff has created an enchanting woodland scene with real dirt, leaves, moss, and birch and willow saplings for his exhibition “The Mystery of Sculpting Cats.” Punctuating this loamy terrain, seven animal heads (bear, owl, snail, dolphin, hippopotamus, beaver, and seahorse) on pedestals suggest something between totem poles, a pet cemetery, and kitschy garden décor. Le Deunff made these works using a nineteenth-century decorative technique known as rocaille, whereby concrete is carved to look like wood. For an artist who has worked