Massimo Carboni

  • Margrét H. Blöndal

    A work of art can bring itself to the attention of the viewer through intense color, large scale, or an assertive expressiveness of meaning. But it can also choose to play on different terrain, where allusion replaces explicit declaration, a discreet and almost modest aspect replaces magniloquence, and suspension and expectation replace direct affirmation. The works of Icelandic artist Margrét H. Blöndal are of this latter type. Her drawings, twenty-one of which are included in her current show at Galleria Alessandra Bonomo, derive from a working process that starts with snapshots of everyday

  • Matthias Hoch

    The spaces and functional structures of daily life in postindustrial society—facades of buildings, street intersections, the suburban periphery—are Matthias Hoch’s chosen themes, and from the time he began working, in 1988, the title of each of his photographs has been, simply, the name of the city where it was shot. There is no human presence, as if these places had been abandoned in haste, at the sound of an alarm warning of an imminent aerial bombardment. Sometimes the images of these non-places (to use a famous expression coined by the sociologist Marc Augé) evoke the squalor and psychological

  • Jan Vercruysse

    Consistent with an artistic journey that now spans several decades, Jan Vercruysse’s new series “PLACES,” 2004–2005, refers back to some earlier series, particularly the “Tombeaux,” 1987–94, and “M,” 1992–98. The guiding images are the figures from playing cards: hearts, clubs, spades, and diamonds, cut from steel and hung on the wall (“PLACES [I]”) or incised into steel and set on the floor (“PLACES [II]”). Those on the wall displayed two winning poker combinations: a full house and two pairs. The edging, obviously machine-made with a die, results in a clear, dry, and precise silhouette, and

  • Christiane Löhr

    For a contemporary artist, working with natural materials can represent an approach to our mythic mother, the earth, but also an investigation of structural laws, the search for an order underlying the apparent disorder of nature. To put Christiane Löhr’s work in perspective we need to bring these two aspects into agreement. This German artist works with horsehair, dog fur, plant stems, thistle or ivy seeds, and grasses and, through elemental operations like knotting, braiding, overlapping, and juxtaposition, constructs (on this occasion, small) sculptures that can be arranged on a horizontal

  • Ouattara Watts

    There are still artists who believe strongly in painting, in its language, in its ability to create imaginative worlds. One such is Ouattara Watts, born in Ivory Coast and now living and working in New York. His work undoubtedly brings to mind the neo-expressionist painting of the ’80s—that of Cucchi, Schnabel, Basquiat, and Penck, to mention a few. Watts reconnects with that period and, with great pictorial skill, investigates archetypes and symbols. For instance, he draws on the imaginative vocabulary of the Senufo religion that he learned as a child as well as modernist icons—the shorthand

  • Marco Tirelli

    In this exhibition, which represents the last ten years of Marco Tirelli’s activity, the artist attempted to draw our attention to the internal coherence that characterizes his work over time. While the consistent foundation for Tirelli’s art is geometric abstraction, his paintings are not rigidly rationalist, deterministic, aprioristic, or deductive. The artist does not devise disembodied schemas, and his forms, volumes, and spaces—while primary, even elementary—are not ideal essences but instead seem impregnated by the empirical concreteness of experience as we perceive it. Tirelli often works

  • Garry Fabian Miller

    In the series of works entitled “Thoughts of a Night Sea,” 2000, Garry Fabian Miller seems to be returning to the nineteenth-century origins of photographic technique. In fact, he uses neither camera nor film but works in the darkroom directly with light and with paper prepared to receive its impression. The horizon between sky and sea has long been his favored motif. In his earlier series titled “The Sea Horizon,” 1976–77, there was a real referent, the Severn River estuary, but here, the luminescent horizontal strips that gather at the center of the image do not correspond to anything real.

  • Mimmo Paladino

    Two things were most striking in this extensive retrospective bringing together nearly thirty years of Mimmo Paladino’s work. The first was the prevalence in his work of the epic mode over anything subjective or individualist—his affinity with the primordial, archaic, totemic phases of civilization. These distant origins, however, appear continuously in the present, and Paladino points toward them by means of fragmentary, enigmatic presences. The second observation had more to do with Paladino’s technical means as an artist who often combines painting with relief elements: While all the projecting

  • Mimmo Jodice

    Mimmo Jodice is one of a handful of artists—among them Franco Mulas, Gabriele Basilico, Mario Cresci, Luigi Ghirri, and Gianni Berengo Gardin—who have helped redeem the figure of the photographer in Italy by liberating the medium from a purely documentary role. This retrospective, covering some thirty-five years of Jodice's work, reveals his oeuvre's immense vitality. The early work is intensely experimental, recalling the radical formal strategies of Cubism and Constructivism. Images are decomposed into fragments (Nudi stroboscopia [Stroboscopic nudes], 1966; Nudo multiplo [Multiple

  • Maki Tamura

    ART REFLECTS THE MOVEMENTS that stir society, transposing them onto an expressive plane. This means that art is not merely an integral part of society, one of its vital organs; it may indeed be the only arena, the only symbolic-expressive dimension, wherein large social transformations can be recognized. This observation arises after seeing the work of Maki Tamura, a twenty-eight-year-old Japanese artist who lived in Indonesia for some time before moving to the United States. The interpenetration of cultures and the interweaving of different ways of seeing are fundamental to her works. The way

  • Marco Samoré

    This show’s content is described perfectly in its title, “Standard.” Largely a Pop fantasy, the exhibition was constructed according to a serial methodology and consisted of just the sort of things that fill our everyday lives in anonymous and repetitive fashion. At the gallery entrance Marco Samori had arranged a heavy curtain like those in certain movie theaters. On a round, fluffy white rug he placed a large sofa and a low coffee table of his own design. Further on, in a comer of the space, was another piece of furniture designed by the artist: a sort of bench or seat on which one easily

  • Yves Klein

    Blue and gold, emptiness and immateriality, the body and the elements: all typical themes and motifs for Yves Klein (1928–62), whose work has emerged as a key passage between postwar painting and the neo-avantgarde of the ’60s and ’70s. Klein’s blue (with which this retrospective opens and on which it dwells) is a radioactive ultramarine, intensified to the point of provocation, where, as the artist himself indicated, it transcends itself and suggests the universe, immateriality, the Great Void of pure sensibility. Klein interwove magical-alchemical traditions with ritualism and the Christian

  • Adam Chodzko

    Salò, or The 120 Days of Sodom, the last film by Pier Paolo Pasolini, was released shortly before the writer-director was murdered in 1975. Violent, at times unbearable, sorrowfully poetic, the film explores the psychopathology of Fascism. Salò is no longer widely (if ever) shown, but those who saw it at the time cannot have forgotten it. This writer, for example, is left with an indelible memory of the scene in which sixteen adolescents, subjected to torture by Fascists, sat at a long, elegantly set table, where they were forced to eat steaming human excrement served on splendid porcelain

  • Dugu Choegyal Rimpoche

    The difficulty of understanding another, distinct culture without simply assimilating it to one’s own has been a topic of intense interest for years now. And it is perhaps the central problem faced by visitors to this exhibition of watercolors on paper by Dugu Choegyal Rimpoche. The artist is a Tibetan lama, recognized as the eighth reincarnation of the abbot of the ancient monastery of Dugu, who was also a painter. Choegyal is using the proceeds from the exhibition for numerous initiatives intended to fight the disappearance of Tibetan culture, which is threatened by the Chinese occupation of

  • Paolo Monti

    The work of Roman artist Paolo Monti can be divided into two distinct but closely interconnected conceptual and methodological categories. On the one hand, the artist has created a body of work about money (both its symbolic and material aspects) in which he explores the fetishism of value. Then there are his investigations into scientific epistemological processes, carried out through hypertechnological arrangements that isolate problems of perception and relationships between subject and object, identity and otherness. Some works have even incorporated elements from both approaches, as in

  • Garry Fabian Miller

    When he took the Cibachrome photographs in the series “Sections of England: The Sea Horizon,” 1976–77, Garry Fabian Miller used the same type of lens, film, and format for each image. What is more significant, however, is that he shot all the photographs from the same position—the roof of his home, which is located on an estuary of the Severn River. The dramatic variations in these vistas are thus determined by changes in weather and time of day, rather than vantage point—an approach that reflects a Cartesian emphasis on a fixed, panoramic eye.

    Fabian Miller’s technical finesse, as well as his

  • Nunzio/Martin Puryear

    What unified the works in this “duet” between the sculptors Martin Puryear and Nunzio was that the pieces on display were almost all made of wood. The different types that were deployed demonstrate varying degrees of resistance to handling, and particular formal qualities. Taking this into consideration, and retaining a certain amount of perceptual ambiguity, both sculptors took care to construct clear and expressive forms.

    Nunzio presented three new pieces under the title “Passagi” (Passage). In the room dedicated to his work he arranged a pair of oak tables that he had blackened by burning.

  • Marco Tirelli

    At first glance it seems Marco Tirelli’s work would fit within a number of familiar art-historical categories; the work could be simultaneously described as formalist, realist, minimalist, conceptual, and abstract. But, of course, this is only at first glance. For if the artist, and the painter in particular, sets in motion a “second sight”— to use a phrase coined by Franz Marc—then the viewer also needs a “second sight” in order to interpret the work of art in question.

    In Tirelli’s case, those art-historical categories, while remaining important elements in the artist’s formative background,

  • Pizzi Cannella

    As if to illustrate the cliché that painters are always creating the same canvas, the Roman artist Pizzi Cannella works in cycles that never seem to be quite completed. Cannella’s recent exhibition was not installed chronologically, but rather in a circular layout reflective of the cyclical aspect of his project. While not a complete retrospective, the show did bring together approximately sixty paintings and thirty works on paper ranging from 1978 to the present.

    Motifs such as clothing, jewels, wrought-iron pieces, and vases reappear intermittently in the canvases. Emerging out of a dialectic

  • Roberto Barni

    This Roberto Barni retrospective, which included paintings, drawings, and sculptures from 1960 to the present, was splendidly organized by Alberto Boatto, a critic and writer who has followed Barni’s work for a number of years. The show’s tone was set by a selection of photographs from the early ’60s—many of which were shown for the first time—portraying Barni as a young man in playful and ironic poses: dressed as a knight with an open umbrella for a shield and a funnel for a helmet, or standing next to a poster that announces his untimely death.

    Early in his career Barni began creating works