Nord Wennerstrom

  • Jae Ko

    Jae Ko’s most recent sculptures are more aggressive in their physicality and more complex in their surface treatment than her earlier work. Ko uses large, tightly bound spools of adding-machine paper that she wraps, folds, and contorts like taffy. Her previous exhibitions featured low, largely symmetrical iridescent black or colored wall reliefs—round, ovoid, and square—whose subtle surface modulations suggested labia, the glyphs of Asian signature seals, or topographic models of old, eroded hills. The Washington, DC–based artist, born in Korea and educated in Tokyo, travels extensively in North

  • Teo González

    In his recent exhibition, “226,085 Drops,” Spanish-born, Brooklynbased artist Teo González proved himself capable of coaxing transcendent moments from mere daubs of paint. González’s square grids are composed of tight clusters of thousands of miniscule “drops-withindrops.” His process involves the application of dabs of acrylic polymer emulsion to a gessoed surface. The composition of the emulsion forces the color to disperse to the edges of each drop, forming tiny haloes. A second set of drops, this time of acrylic enamel, is then spotted onto the first. González references Minimalism and

  • Daniel Davidson, Scarecrow, 2006.
    picks November 02, 2006

    “Good Cop/Bad Cop”

    “Good Cop/Bad Cop,” comprising new paintings and drawings from husband-and-wife artists Daniel Davidson and Tricia Keightley, pairs two distinct bodies of work that bridge painting and illustration to examine contemporary urban life. Davidson is decidedly “street” in imagery and tone, celebrating the continual assault that constitutes daily life in New York. His environments are broken and patched, but they work, though just barely. Scarecrow (all works 2006) riffs on defaced signage: Garish ribbons of colors swirl around a wooden post covered with tattered, quaint-sounding, hand-scrawled messages

  • Courage, 2006.
    picks October 06, 2006

    Erik Sandberg

    “Contrary,” Erik Sandberg’s exhibition of three provocative new double-sided, freestanding paintings on the theme of virtue and vice, are tremendous achievements in figuration—masterfully painted and richly sculptural, they establish the artist as a worthy heir to John Currin and Lisa Yuskavage. Sandberg harbors a dark wit and a tremendous knowledge of art, revealed over the years in disquieting narrative paintings crawling with small figures that call to mind Pieter Bruegel the Elder’s Netherlandish proverbs and Hieronymous Bosch’s rancid characters. (The artist prefers reference to the

  • Bradley McCallum and Jacqueline Tarry

    Cut, 2006, a four-and-a-half-minute video that was accompanied in this show by six stills, depicts husband-and-wife performance artists Bradley McCallum and Jacqueline Tarry methodically shearing each other’s hair with a straight razor, and is perhaps the pair’s most hypnotic, moving, and politically charged work to date. The action walks a line between poetry and violence, a duality conveyed through a complex choreography. The amplified sound—brittle and declarative—of razor sawing through hair is chilling. The work was inspired by images of Nazi collaborators in postwar France, their heads

  • Jeff Spaulding

    It would sometimes be comforting to think of borders as consistently clear and absolute, but the border between what we see and what we think we see, for one, is rather less certain. In his recent show “Mine” at G Fine Art, Jeff Spaulding compellingly investigated this strain of perceptual equivocation via a collection of compact sculptures constructed from (mostly) found objects. In a recent interview, Spaulding professed to be intrigued with how an object might represent two things at once while maintaining a balance of meaning between them, one that could shift from “playful to dangerous,

  • (Youth) Actor's Mask, 1924.
    picks August 09, 2006

    “Klee and America”

    Paul Klee never set foot in the United States, but the Swiss-born artist’s childlike, surrealistic pictographs proved very influential on these shores—his devotees included Diego Rivera, Frida Kahlo, Mark Rothko, Morris Louis, and Philip Johnson. Prescient dealer-collector-advocates Katherine Dreier, William Valentiner, and Galka Scheyer introduced Klee’s work to American audiences in the early 1920s. Dreier, who cofounded the highly influential Société Anonyme in New York (the subject of an exhibition opening here on October 14), gave Klee his first official exhibition, while German-born Scheyer,

  • Installation view, 2006.
    picks July 31, 2006

    Anselm Kiefer

    “Velimir Chlebnikov,” Anselm Kiefer’s thirty-painting epic, is a remarkable achievement, a fresh, relevant, and exhilarating treatment of a subject the artist has long mined: mass destruction and tentative resurrection. All of Kiefer’s hallmarks are present: history and folly inevitably and vexingly repeating themselves; mysticism, numerology, and other esoterica; and lots of burned, charred, desolate gray landscapes . . . or, in this case, seascapes. The exhibition’s title refers to an early-twentieth-century Russian poet/mystic who postulated a convulsive global sea battle every 317 years.

  • Robert Irwin, Untitled, 1968.
    picks July 27, 2006


    “Translucence: Southern California Art from the 1960s and 1970s” offers a taut and compelling exploration of light and optics by members of LA’s Light and Space, or Glass and Plastic, movement. The efficiently installed exhibition features twenty-three works manufactured from various combinations of plastic, resin, glass, pigment, and other industrial materials, all of which meld a fetishistic attention to surface with mystical, buoyant Southern California light. The period when these objects were created coincided with the high-water mark for California’s aerospace industry, which employed

  • March 19, 2005.
    picks July 12, 2006

    Renate Aller

    Renate Aller’s “Fixed Coordinate,” a suite of eight digital color-pigment prints and a forty-five-minute video of the sea-sky horizon, revisits a single point in the Atlantic Ocean during different times of year. There are obvious similarities to Hiroshi Sugimoto’s photographs and Mark Rothko’s horizontal division of space, but Aller manages to avoid being derivative with hypnotically beautiful combinations of light and texture that meld abstraction with representation in arresting yet simple compositions. March 10, 2005 records a remarkable moment of turbulence in both sea and sky, with painterly,

  • Frank DiPerna

    Frank DiPerna’s recent exhibition, “In the Studio: Frank DiPerna,” included fourteen photographs notable for their deceptively simple composition and saturated colors. The shots—mostly still lifes and tableaux—border on the surreal, a significant departure from the empiricist landscape photography for which the artist is best known. Moreover, they demonstrate in subtle ways his ability to intertwine irony and wit with an acute sense of texture and a resourceful use of found objects. DiPerna, a professor at the Corcoran College of Art & Design, created this new body of work in order to acknowledge

  • Ira 1, 2006.
    picks May 31, 2006

    Avish Khebrehzadeh

    Born in Iran and based in Washington, DC, Avish Khebrehzadeh stood out from the crowd at the 2004 “Mediterraneans” exhibition at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Rome with her hypnotic and transportive In the Horizon I, 2004, a video animation of softly drawn, nearly featureless figures perambulating, floating, and swirling through indeterminate space. The animation and a group of olive-oil-and-graphite-on-paper drawings subsequently shown at Susan Inglett Gallery in New York continued to reveal the artist’s intriguing ability to engage the viewer with ambiguity.

    The artist’s new work, a series