Paige K. Bradley

  • interviews May 31, 2016

    DIS

    DIS are a collective whose activities flirt across many spheres of contemporary culture—art, fashion, publishing, and now curating, in which their first major outing is the ninth edition of the Berlin Biennale, “The Present in Drag.” The show opens on June 4 in various venues across the city and runs through September 18, 2016. Here the members of DIS discuss their new curatorial role, the process of putting together the exhibition, and a few projects one can expect to see.

    THIS IS OUR FIRST AND ONLY BIENNIAL, and in a sense it is a materialization of concepts, themes, and aesthetic interests

  • diary May 03, 2016

    My So-Called Weekend

    I WAS EXPECTING A WARM WELCOME in Berlin. But instead, the schizophrenic weather beckoned me into more of a winter formal for the city’s twelfth annual Gallery Weekend. Carly Fiorina was announced as Ted Cruz’s running mate for the GOP nomination—meanwhile I entered into the running for Most Precocious Chickadee on the Berlin art-world circuit.

    Run by Maike Cruse, formerly of the Art Basel Circus Circus Incorporated, Gallery Weekend is meant to promote the vitality and diversity of Berlin’s gallery scene, with openings and happenings across the city’s best Bergs “bringing people back into the

  • picks April 29, 2016

    Ed Atkins

    A video, an empty stage, and you: These are the things that make Ed Atkins’s show go. For this sparest of installations—which feels radical next to the overbearing clusterfuck exhibitions so au courant these days (Mike Kelley they ain’t)—the artist puts the sprawl where his mouth is and delivers a rollicking, multipronged poem. The video, titled Performance Capture, 2015–16, is a CGI anthology of more than one hundred people tag-teaming parts of a sharply enunciated monologue delivered by a single head and a pair of detached forearms, all floating against a white background. Ostensibly male,

  • interviews March 23, 2016

    Wu Tsang

    Wu Tsang’s installations, performances, sculptures, and videos move fluidly among documentary, activism, and fiction. Her 2012 film Wildness premiered at the Museum of Modern Art, and her work was also featured in the 2012 Whitney Biennial and in “The Ungovernables,” the second New Museum Triennial. Here the Los Angeles–based artist discusses her latest video installation, Duilian. This installation forms the focal point of her current exhibition at Spring Workshop in Hong Kong, which runs through May 22, 2016.

    DUILIAN IS INSPIRED by the Chinese poet Qiu Jin, a famous revolutionary martyr from

  • interviews February 16, 2016

    Matmos

    The music of Matmos, a partnership between the composers M. C. (Martin) Schmidt and Drew Daniel, often elides boundaries between musical genres and acoustic and electronic sounds. The duo’s latest album, Ultimate Care II, will be released on Thrill Jockey on February 19, 2016, and is a single long-playing track that the musicians, made entirely by sampling the sounds of the washing machine at their home in Baltimore. The appliance’s model name lends the album its title. Though the machine’s manufacturer, Whirlpool, declined to sponsor Matmos’s tour, the duo will nevertheless embark on a short

  • diary February 03, 2016

    Ooh LA LA

    COMING HOT ON THE HEELS of Mercury’s retrograde, here we are with three art fairs—out of the frying pan and into the fire! Los Angeles is, after all, known for spontaneously combusting every few months or so.

    I arrived at the first one, Art Los Angeles Contemporary at Santa Monica’s Barker Hangar, on Thursday night after the usual crosstown crawl that is demanded to get to most anywhere. One does not just book it to an art fair here—one crawls (crawl worm!). ALAC, one letter away from goosing you for insurance, is in its seventh year and this time around featured seventy-four galleries and nine

  • picks January 01, 2016

    Jean Baudrillard

    What did Jean Baudrillard like looking at? Based on this exhibition of his own photography, to say nothing of his authoring an essay called “The Conspiracy of Art” (1996), it certainly wasn’t art. If anything, this group of fourteen giclée prints from the late 1980s to the early aughts, featuring quotidian scenes of urban graffiti, torn posters, wrinkled facades, drapery, broken statues, and humdrum oddities seems like an ironically artistic attempt at shoring up that treatise’s proposition that contemporary aesthetic activity “truly is null.” The images displayed here, taken throughout a good

  • diary November 06, 2015

    Young at Art

    “IS THERE A MEMBERS’ area we can go to?” quoth two blandly handsome suits Wednesday at the bar of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum’s annual Young Collectors’ Council preparty gala (try saying it three times fast). At $350 per head to benefit the museum and sponsored by Christian Dior Couture, the naive might think we were already in exclusive territory, but I guess like any addiction the velvet-rope habit is about committing to going deep. While I was absorbed by my white linen napkin square (complimentary, like the champagne), a gaggle of plainclothed New York City Ballet dancers bustled

  • picks October 30, 2015

    Jacky Connolly and Flannery Silva

    The scene is twilight, the leaves are turning, and a girl logs practice time on her acoustic guitar in an animated world shot within the 2009 PC game The Sims 3. Tear-like droplets ambiguously fall from characters’ limbs throughout. Living in a house upstate with a smaller, surlier missy in Jack Skellington logo apparel, no one speaks, but they do bake calzones in their living room and have an ice-skating rink in the picturesque backyard. Jacky Connolly’s two videos—articulating this rustique mise-en-scène of lonely utopia—Hudson Valley Rock Chick and Forever Alone Calzone (all works 2015),

  • diary October 12, 2015

    Days of Future Past

    “GREATER NEW YORK,” MoMA PS1’s signature “quinquennial,” seems more like a Hunger Games Quarter Quell. A broad cross-section of artists is reunited to present an image of just what New York’s whole deal is these days. Judgments are made, and maybe by the end someone will make it out alive. This kind of survey show was once designed to take the temperature of a scene. Well, you don’t check your temperature unless you feel ill, and anyone who lives in New York knows all is not well in the state of us (especially if you made the grave mistake of going to college while poor in the past decade…).

    It’s

  • interviews October 06, 2015

    Hannah Black

    Hannah Black’s writings and artwork address race, gender, class, pop culture, and geopolitics, among other things. Her first solo show at Arcadia Missa in London, which she discusses here, opened on October 2 and runs through October 31, 2015. Black is also currently participating in two group shows: “Workland: the fence is a narrow place” at Chateau Shatto in Los Angeles, on view through October 31, and “The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter” at the Yarat Contemporary Art Center in Baku, Azerbaijan, which runs through January 7, 2016.

    THERE ARE SEVERAL DIFFERENT types of objects in this exhibition—airline

  • diary September 29, 2015

    Net Effect

    AFTER A COUPLE HOURS’ LAYOVER and lie-down in Moscow’s Sheremetyevo airport—site of Edward Snowden’s own private odyssey—I arrived last Wednesday in the former Soviet colony Azerbaijan’s capital: Baku. A city of ancient architecture hemmed in by a flowering of modern construction; producer of a supposed one million barrels of oil a day; metropolis of a country that imprisons elderly journalists with heart conditions: People live here. As for me, I was merely on the hunt for—what else—some contemporary art.

    Cruising down the freeway in a cab from Heydar Aliyev airport, named for the current

  • diary August 26, 2015

    Welcome Committee

    INVOLVING OVER SIXTY GALLERIES, project spaces, and museums in addition to the third edition of the Chart Art Fair and the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art’s annual literature festival, the first weekend of Copenhagen Art Week suffered no lack of exhibitions, talks, performances, and shindigs to variously see, imbibe, and endure, in no particular order.

    I arrived early Friday morning and immediately commenced tromping around photographer Joakim Eskildsen’s exhibition at the National Museum of Photography and Anouk Kruithof’s show of sweat-inspired sculptures at soon-to-be-roving project space GREEN

  • picks July 17, 2015

    “What Nerve! Alternative Figures in American Art, 1960 to the Present”

    It begins with a darkened room and a gleeful sheer-noise terror from a blank screen—a ghoul running its tendrils up and down musical keys, head thrown back and shredding out its wet, throaty mating call. It’s the 1990s Providence collective Forcefield, of course—audio tracks and a video dispatched straight from some utopian past. The impudence implied by the title of this exhibition of Chicago’s Hairy Who and Bay Area Funk artists, in addition to the freaks and no-goodniks of collectives Destroy All Monsters and Forcefield, is apropos. Then again, any nerves one might bring on board for this

  • interviews June 26, 2015

    Sarah Cain

    Sarah Cain is a Los Angeles–based artist whose work explores boundaries between painting, sculpture, and installation. “Bow Down,” her solo exhibition at Honor Fraser Gallery in Los Angeles, is on view through July 11, 2015. In tandem, her first solo museum show runs at the Museum of Contemporary Art, San Diego, in La Jolla through July 19, 2015. The latter includes selections from the institution’s permanent collection as well as the artist’s personal collection, which Cain discusses below.

    AT THE CORE of my work is a challenge to abstract painting—an attempt to expand it. It comes from a deep

  • interviews June 02, 2015

    Lydia Lunch

    Lydia Lunch is well known for her photography, writing, and music from the past three decades. Based in Barcelona, she recently released the new album Urge to Kill on Rustblade with her band RETROVIRUS; her 1990 spoken word work Conspiracy of Women (C.O.W.) will be rereleased this month on limited-edition vinyl by Nicholas Jaar’s label, Other People. Lunch will perform the piece on June 5, 2015, at 7 PM at Howl! Happening in New York, where an exhibition of new photography and selections from her archives are also on display through June 5. Here, she talks about her process, formative influences,

  • picks May 15, 2015

    Charles Burchfield

    Start anywhere, go everywhere—that would seem to be the calling card of mid-twentieth-century painter Charles Burchfield’s body of work, which predominately captures scenes from nature and rural, country life as charged by drama, tension, and a freewheeling style that rockets straight out of humble en plein air painting’s crypt and into the stratosphere of vision. The effervescent landscape drawings in this exhibition are often cut through with shafts of light, as in Dawn in Early Spring, 1946–66, which depicts a forest. The picture—done in watercolor and charcoal, as many works in the show

  • interviews April 29, 2015

    C. Spencer Yeh

    C. Spencer Yeh is a New York–based artist and musician who is well known for his voice-based performances. For the past twenty years he has recorded as Burning Star Core and under his given name. His new ten-track record, Solo Voice I – X, was released this month by Primary Information as an LP in an edition of 500. He will perform the record in entirety at Artists Space on June 23, 2015, as part of a 2015 residency at ISSUE Project Room.

    I’VE USED MY VOICE in a lot of other recordings, and for years I had been saying—or threatening—that I would do an all-voice record. A one-instrument album is

  • picks April 24, 2015

    Caitlin MacBride

    Fragments, ciphers, mirroring, and a whisper about lineage are hung as five oil paintings in Caitlin MacBride’s New York debut. Presenting a mysterious array of oblong forms severed from discernable context, MacBride’s works slink around the alleys of representation but have clearly inhaled the vapors of abstraction and had more than a few liaisons with “Pictures.” Orphaned from any alliances, they look like they’re searching for where they might fit in, as if wandering down art history’s halls, querying David Salle: “Are you my father?”

    The two largest works pull the heavier weight of ideas.

  • picks April 10, 2015

    Peter Saul

    Caught up in the fluorescent reds, acidic greens, and woozy ultramarine blues coating erotic entanglements of cartoons and classical figuration, politics and fantasy, in these acrylic and oil canvases, you could just miss the black marker insignia “SAUL ’68” on Target Practice. Hiding in plain sight is evidence that these large works hail from an era of riots, uprisings, the Vietnam War, and the flourishing of countercultural glee in America. Take equal parts hysterical protest and militaristic righteousness and you have a painting like Pinkville, 1970: A glistening orange American solider with