Phil Taylor

  • David Douard, WE, 2015, plaster, aluminum, copper, balloon, eggs, chain, 16 1/2 × 9 7/8 × 9 7/8".

    David Douard

    Bastardized and truncated forms of language motivate David Douard’s approach to sculpture. The improvised elisions and contractions in vernacular discourse and the inclusiveness of a vague pronoun coursed through communication technologies, bodily and electronic alike, in his exhibition “Bat-Breath. Battery.” The desire to render such phenomena visible was most obviously embodied in six square shadow boxes, which, corresponding in size to a large cutout excised by the artist in a wall connecting two gallery spaces, suggested cross-sections of the building’s hidden electrical interior. Several

  • Pepo Salazar, 
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2015, mixed media, dimensions variable.
    picks November 19, 2015

    Pepo Salazar

    Punctuated by interruptions—synthetic iPhone and Skype jingles bleating from an amp in the corner, a metal bar planted just inside the gallery door assuring an awkward entrance, another bisecting the gallery horizontally at mid-torso—Pepo Salazar’s exhibition reproduces a distracted delirium we know all too well. Sure, there’s relaxing ukulele chords strumming from the video installation, Hashtag me please, #Zzz,zzz (excitotoxicity pro-performance cascade). Two yellow faces (all works 2015). But these abruptly break off into aggro ads and pop anthems, just like your favorite streaming service.

  • Kapwani Kiwanga, Koki Dorée, 2015, sequin fabric, salt, rope, conch shell, dimensions variable.
    picks November 12, 2015

    Kapwani Kiwanga

    Kapwani Kiwanga’s exhibition “Continental Shift” is concerned with the intersection of geology and imagination. The Strait of Gibraltar, which is ground zero for the eventual collision of Europe and Africa’s tectonic plates, features in a projected video, Strata (all works 2015), capturing electric colors dancing across the stalactites of a sound and light show at St. Michael’s Cave in the Rock of Gibraltar—a cavern once believed to connect to Morocco. Kiwanga also presents materials from archives and natural-history collections related to the strait, including proposals to construct an “

  • Thomas Demand, Publishing House 64, 2015, pigment print, 40 x 53”.
    picks November 12, 2015

    Thomas Demand

    Thomas Demand’s distinctive process of producing photographs that plumb terms of representation has long engaged architecture. This current exhibition features a series of pictures of models found in the Tokyo offices of SANAA. With a blanched palette, they’re almost black and white, save for a stray lilac or marigold scrap of tape here and there. In contrast, the gallery is darkened by a trompe l’oeil of chocolaty wrapping paper covering the walls, its creases partitioning them into a grid. By installing this wallpaper, Demand ensures that illusion and material presence come into close dialogue,

  • View of “Korakrit Arunanondchai,” 2015. Photo: Aurélien Mole.

    Korakrit Arunanondchai

    Stepping into Korakrit Arunanondchai’s exhibition “Painting with history in a room filled with people with funny names 3,” one had the sensation of entering the set of a music video, an elaborately contrived nightclub, an “imagineered” theme park gone off the rails, a temple decked out in polychrome ritual paraphernalia—or indeed some synthesis of all of these. In other words: a spectacularized Gesamtkunstwerk.

    Filling two spaces—one associated with the body and one with the spirit—linked by a darkened corridor, the exhibition, curated by Julien Fronsacq, was billed as the epilogue

  • Jo-ey Tang, Document from Like An Intruder, The Speaker Removes His Cap, Patch 1.1 (detail), 2015, adhesive plastic, cigarette butts, and and butterfly-pea flower tea on aluminum and wood, 69 x 24".
    picks October 16, 2015

    Shanta Rao and Jo-ey Tang

    As a late addition or repair, a patch can extend the life of an object, whether software or streetwear. But it is also a bonding agent, as in this exhibition titled “Patch,” bringing together the work of Shanta Rao and Jo-ey Tang. Slight gradations of tone and texture flicker across the exquisite surfaces of Rao’s untitled abstractions (all works 2015), which are wrought from silk-screen impressions and punched indentations on rubber, linoleum, heavy black paper, or copper sheeting. Technically prints, they are also translations wherein the coded information of a pixel is reconstituted as a

  • Aaron Flint Jamison, 2x Scrypt Huffer (detail), 2014, application-specific integrated circuits, heatsinks, wood, power cables, data cables, hardware, carbon fiber, copper, foam, peltier devices, ESD material, inverters, ducting, air conditioner, screen, books, servers, dimensions variable.
    picks October 06, 2015

    Aaron Flint Jamison

    Craft improbably collides with the aesthetics of network administration in Aaron Flint Jamison’s latest exhibition, where the mainframe is 2x Scrypt Huffer, 2014. Kitted out with turned-wood conduits and mounted to the wall, a lacquered black box—think floating minifridge—houses a shimmering array of application-specific integrated circuits. This processing hub is tethered to a terminal constructed from purple heartwood, a dense material whose enduring appeal to the artist might lie in its sheer resistance to manipulation. With its monitor at face height, the standing workstation incorporates

  • Nina Könnemann, What’s New, 2015, HD video, color, silent, 3 minutes 43 seconds.
    picks September 22, 2015

    Nina Könnemann

    Nina Könnemann’s ethnography of micro gestures and marginal spaces continues with the video What’s New, 2015. Projected silently and clocking in at three minutes and forty-three seconds, it’s calibrated to YouTube-era attention spans. But such brevity belies the extended observation undergirding its absorbing ends. The video surveys a single street-level billboard in Berlin over an indeterminate period of time, its posters changing along with the seasons. Variously framed to either show the whole display or focus on salient details, footage of the site is intercut with shots of concerts, a

  • View of “Old News (Again),” 2015.
    picks September 16, 2015

    “Old News (Again)”

    The conventions and vicissitudes of media make headlines in curator Jacob Fabricius’s project Old News, a free, nonprofit newspaper issued periodically since 2004. For each edition, Fabricius invites an artist or group of artists to select news clippings to be recirculated. This exhibition presents a range of old alongside new editions of the paper. Walead Beshty’s undated contribution, renamed the Shanzhai Times, disrupts temporal distinctions, among other things, by mixing images of knockoff culture with apparently genuine news items chronicling instances in which the authority and authenticity

  • Laure Prouvost, The Smoking Image, 2015, tapestry, motorcycles, smoke machines, mud, carpets, eggs, cellphones, feathers, video, color, sound, 8 minutes 40 seconds.
    picks September 02, 2015

    Laure Prouvost

    Things move quickly in the ludic world of Laure Prouvost, so listen close and try to keep up. Unexpected liaisons arise between words in her loquacious videos, which spill into accompanying installations and artifacts. For instance, sitting amid the quirky tea service surrounding the Turner Prize–winning Wantee, 2013, one occasionally hears an anguished lament from an adjacent room, accessed by a diminutive corridor worthy of Alice in Wonderland: “They don’t understand! They don’t fucking understand!” the artist protests in a video titled Stong Sory Vegetables, 2010. But misunderstandings become

  • View of “Louis Soutter and Victor Hugo,” 2015.
    picks August 14, 2015

    Louis Soutter and Victor Hugo

    In his sole contribution to the journal Minotaure in 1936, Le Corbusier admitted that his cousin Louis Soutter’s visionary conception of a life—or a house—predicated on interiority was entirely opposed to his own. A more apt alliance is made in this exhibition, pairing Soutter’s works on paper with those of the author Victor Hugo. Common literary themes and a predilection for the fantastic over descriptive fidelity unite the two artists, despite their stylistic differences. Soutter’s drawings flourish across notebooks and pages; Hugo’s washes of ink seep across leaves of paper in waves.

    Gothic

  • Alphonse Bertillon, Murder of Monsieur Canon, boulevard de Clichy, 9 December 1914; Murder of Monsieur André, boulevard de la Villette, Paris, 3 October 1910; Murder of Madame Langlois, Puteaux case, 5 April 1905, three silver gelatin photographs, each 11 x 8".
    picks July 31, 2015

    “Images of Conviction: The Construction of Visual Evidence”

    Examining the epistemological structure of the image, this exhibition surveys nonartistic practices that have utilized visual information as evidence. The eleven case studies here, each introduced with texts by a team of scholars, range from Alphonse Bertillon’s 1903 protocols for metric photography of crime scenes to video testimony and satellite images analyzed by the Forensic Architecture research group to confirm American drone strikes in Waziristan. Since visual testimony can confound as much as clarify, these examples often highlight the norms established to validate the images’ claims to