Patricia C. Phillips

  • Ann Messner

    Ann Messner makes quiet disturbances, using simple forms, common objects, and often the conventions of museological display. Near the entrance to the gallery, the artist installed two adjoining steel shelves each supporting three textured. rusted canisters with raised images of open, grasping hands eerily etched on their surfaces. Five of the sealed vessels sit on top of the shelves, but the sixth is suspended precariously below; it appears to have fallen somehow through the substantial surface. Its lid is absent, and the empty interior is coated with a milky white wax normally used to seal

  • Tadao Ando

    Tadao Ando is part of a small, distinguished roster of modern architects, including Le Corbusier and Frank Lloyd Wright, who had no formal architectural education but went on to conceive and build some of the most innovative and influential buildings of the 20th century. His subtly orchestrated projects are characterized by spartan interiors, dramatic lighting, the use of tough materials, and daring siting. Thus far, Ando has worked only in his native Japan, but his growing renown will undoubtedly generate international projects.

    Ando’s buildings were the principal subject of this exhibition,

  • Mark Robbins

    In this first installment of a trilogy of traveling exhibitions, architect Mark Robbins surveyed historic and contemporary New York, to create artifacts and environments that explore this city and the phenomenology of cities more generally. Rather than constructing literal or mimetic architectural spaces, Robbins made large-scale objects that could be climbed on and moved through in order to explore the psychological effect of participation in the city.

    Framing American Cities is a broad examination of three emblematic cities: New York, Columbus, Ohio, and San Francisco. Though based on the

  • Elizabeth Diller and Ricardo Scofidio

    Currently on its second stop in a traveling tour of four cities, Elizabeth Diller and Ricardo Scofidio’s installation constitutes a magnificently obsessive analysis of travel, sightseeing, and art’s seductive role in the burgeoning industry of tourism.

    Influenced by an ambitious range of ideas and images, including travel writing and leisure theory, postcards and collectibles, not to mention its own status as an art event booked to travel, the exhibition is conceived around a standard module: a ubiquitous vinyl Samsonite suitcase. From a plywood drop-ceiling, 50 bags suspended from poles at eye

  • Stan Allen

    Stan Allen contributed a challenging new installment to “miniseries,” a continuing forum for innovative work by young architects. He used a small, awkward space to intensify the productive disturbances that constitute his inquiry. Allen’s “Between Drawing and Building” examined this area through historical and cultural images as well as through several recent projects by the architect. That Allen’s selected architectural projects were all galleries in lower Manhattan provided a decisive twist. The programmatic implications of the designed, meticulously detailed art space tapped into a generous

  • Ben Nicholson/Reiser + Umemoto

    The dissonances signaled by the current architectural buzzword, “domesticity” and “interiority” have influenced both abstruse theory and practical work. These tensions—between the public and private, the individual psyche and the interior environment, the home and the contaminating influence of information and media technology—animate this adventurous exhibition. In two proposals for the single-family house—the architectural laboratory where normative typology meets idiosyncratic lives—architecture provides a bulwark against the instabilities of contemporary life. These projects explore the

  • Helen Mayer Harrison/Newton Harrison

    For two decades the Harrisons have collaborated on environmental projects throughout the world that have anticipated fleeting moments of global consciousness provoked by various ecological crises. “Changing the Conversation,” the title of their recent show of proposals and projects in process, refers to their role as agents who stimulate a dialogue with a community in order to counter assumptions that inform widespread inertia. Their work frequently prescribes a major landscape adjustment, and it is their dialogue that guides and generates these interventions.

    The main room was dedicated to their

  • Inge Mahn

    Though in her previous show Inge Mahn amended the exhibition space with subtle but invasive plaster architectural elements that extended the existing structural and plumbing systems, here her intervention is less determined by the specific site.

    Falling Crosses, 1991, consists of a dynamic arrangement of human-scaled white crosses, constructed of plywood, wrapped in burlap, and coated with white plaster. While some stand upright, most lean on a horizontal appendage and appear to have toppled over. In one corner, several stacked crosses nearly reach the gallery ceiling. Their instability is

  • Natalie Bookchin

    Inspired by a nostalgia for domesticity, Natalie Bookchin’s exhibition, entitled “Playing House,” evokes children’s games as well as traditional handcrafted artifacts, such as embroidered samplers, to relay disquieting messages about violent street crime, drug use, political corruption, and personal deception.

    In False Positive (Daisy) a work that incorporates petals from a flower used in a “he-loves-me-he-loves-me-not” game, 23 brilliant-red rectangles, alternately labeled positive and negative, each frame a petal. Stretched along the wall in a uniform, horizontal row, the arrangement constitutes

  • Dan Hoffman

    Though Dan Hoffman is first and foremost an architect, as his structural and spatial manipulations suggest, this exhibition positions itself between art and architecture, militantly challenging the prevailing conditions of contemporary architectural practice that have robbed it of intellectual, sensual, and creative immediacy. Though architecture, which is distinguished by its scale, ubiquity, and complexity, requires a managed approach, Hoffman resists the alienating forces of capital that exempt the architect from the creative process and turn this practice into a rote and formulaic procedure.

  • David Hammons

    David Hammons’ tough, discursive iconoclasm is fueled by an improbable amalgam of influences, including Marcel Duchamp, African-American culture, Dadaism, and Harlem street life. At The Institute for Contemporary Art, P.S. 1 Museum, a retrospective of work from the past two decades subtitled “Rousing the Rabble” illuminates the many passages this artist has traveled. In contrast, two successive installations at the Jack Tilton Gallery provide a more focused look at work completed since the artist spent one year at the American Academy in Rome.

    Hammons’ work has always tampered with the borders

  • Polly Apfelbaum

    Polly Apfelbaum’s sleight of hand arrangements are composed neither of ubiquitous cultural artifacts nor of ordinary treasures found in streets and cities. Apfelbaum selects her objects for specific associative and emotional qualities, and the tender, disturbing installations she composes give the tradition of the found object a new feminist twist. This work continues the examination of the mutable meaning of things but marshalls specific associations to predetermined ends.

    Targetlike forms in three of Apfelbaum’s installations, each entitled Wallflowers, 1990, appear to retreat and press against