Piper Marshall

  • Ericka Beckman, STALK (detail), 2021, still from the HD-video component (color, sound, 30 minutes) of a mixed-media performance additionally comprising a mechanical stage prop and live drummer.

    TAKING STALK

    FOR MORE THAN FORTY YEARS, Ericka Beckman has coaxed viewers to assume the perspective of a child. Her earliest films, in 8 and 16 mm, featured simple performances, bright geometric shapes, and crude computer graphics layered into staccato vignettes. (Critics such as Sally Banes have likened their looping, repetitive structure to children’s songs.) The camera was her editing tool: Beckman double-exposed the film to alter the tempo and animate the tableau. Rehearsing the dynamic between caregiver and ward, teacher and student, these early, small-gauge works complement pieces such as Joan Jonas’s

  • Ericka Beckman, STALK (detail), 2021, still from the HD-video component (color, sound, 30 minutes) of a mixed-media performance additionally comprising a mechanical stage prop and live drummer.
    performance October 29, 2021

    TAKING STALK

    FOR MORE THAN FORTY YEARS, Ericka Beckman has coaxed viewers to assume the perspective of a child. Her earliest films, in 8 and 16 mm, featured simple performances, bright geometric shapes, and crude computer graphics layered into staccato vignettes. (Critics such as Sally Banes have likened their looping, repetitive structure to children’s songs.) The camera was her editing tool: Beckman double-exposed the film to alter the tempo and animate the tableau. Rehearsing the dynamic between caregiver and ward, teacher and student, these early, small-gauge works complement pieces such as Joan Jonas’s

  • View of “afterlife,” 2015–16.
    picks December 18, 2015

    “afterlife”

    Julie Ault’s mutable exhibition as archive, “afterlife,” 2014–15, first shown at the 2014 Whitney Biennial, continues loosening—or “queering”—the straightened seams of narrative by bringing together objects, homages, and conversations from cult protagonists: Liberace, Martin Wong, Ted Kaczynski, and David Wojnarowicz, among others. These personalities linger in the space of the gallery while inhabiting another, active moment of historicization: the 1980s. Rather than showing only artwork, Ault presents ephemera, such as agendas, sketches, memory boxes, and transcripts, bits of lives that occupy

  • Luther Price, Light Fracture Backwash, 2015, 35mm slides, acrylic paint and varnish on canvas, 24 x 24".
    picks October 16, 2015

    Luther Price

    In the 1980s, he traveled to Nicaragua to make work with a group of artists. The accident happened so quickly, the bullet piercing the skin in advance of reflex. One photograph foregrounds this accident in his latest exhibition: We see Luther Price in a hospital bed. We see the wound. This image inscribes itself in light on the surface. We see the lesion travelling from subject to object, one formally opening onto the other through the now-thirty-year-old puncture in the photograph.

    The wound appears on 16-mm film, on 35-mm slides. With each press of the celluloid, each splice of the film, and

  • Mike Kelley, City 17, 2011, tinted urethane resin on illuminated base, 84 x 16 1/2".
    picks September 25, 2015

    Mike Kelley

    Let’s begin with the allegory of Superman and the way the cultural icon pushes the conventions of heroics (alien on Earth and alienated from Kandor), all expressed within the concision of a comic strip. Beyond the habit of metaphor, the story of Superman, his displacement between here and elsewhere, haunts the exhibition—where the artist is definitively not present.

    In his absence, models of the vigilante’s home planet—an assembly of many sculptures—litter the floor, while a series of lenticular light boxes limn their presence. The skylines of these cities mutate from elongated twisting spires

  • Ebecho Muslimova, Fatebe Air Pump, 2015, ink on paper 12 x 9".
    picks July 24, 2015

    Ebecho Muslimova

    A particular smell clings to New York City’s Chinatown in the summer. The aroma makes its way to Orchard Street. It inflects the eight drawings hanging at Room East. These direct cartoons depict FATEBE. FATEBE is artist Ebecho Muslimova’s alter ego. We may not know Muslimova, but FATEBE is a black line on white ground. And Fatebe is doing things (think Garbage Pail Kids). FATEBE is playing with herself; she is playing with her fat body. She stares at her face in a stream of shit. She twists her form into a mess on the potter’s wheel. She folds her flab over a wire. She flatulates out into the

  • Barbara Kasten, Transposition 3, 2014, fujiflex digital print, 60 x 48".
    picks April 10, 2015

    Barbara Kasten

    Barbara Kasten did not study with Josef Albers, but the Bauhaus ghosts her work. The photographs on view in her latest exhibition are constructions, geometric props positioned to throw colored light and shadows across the page. The plastic forms in these images delineate space but neither rise into the foreground nor fall into the background.

    A spatial visual exchange registers on the photographic paper. Where De Stijl jockeys color and line in two dimensions, Kasten’s “Transpositions,” 2014, opt for a manipulation of volume and air. This respiration of form into space appears as an intentional

  • View of “Guyton, Price, Smith, Walker,” 2014.
    picks June 29, 2014

    “Guyton, Price, Smith, Walker”

    They sling readymade fabric over stretchers and call it painting (Thomas Sauter), download open-source software to build digital utopias (Emanuel Rossetti), splice samples of Ciara and R. Kelly with disregard for copyright (Hannah Weinberger), and scan the holograms of CDs with the choreography of a graffiti tagger (Tobias Madison). With a studious charm, the ten artists in “Guyton, Price, Smith, Walker” detourne the artistic strategies solidified by the predecessors referenced in the show’s title. A direct nod to Beatrix Ruf’s seminal exhibition of Wade Guyton, Seth Price, Josh Smith, and Kelley

  • Jordan Wolfson, (Female figure), 2014, mixed media, 90 1/2 x 72 x 29".
    picks March 30, 2014

    Jordan Wolfson

    Jordan Wolfson is a filmmaker in the traditional sense, drawing more from the history of cinema than from art. The specific strategy of his celluloid, digital, and animated beauties involves layering, where one film exists within or on top of another. Success is derived from a calculated dissonance. See his 2006 short of a tuxedoed figure signing Charlie Chaplin’s parody of Hitler: “I’m sorry but I don’t want to be an Emperor . . . that’s not my business.” Or the footage of milk inserted into marching Diet Coke bottles in Con Leche, 2009, or his recent effort Raspberry Poser, 2012, where CGI

  • Gallery Girls, 2012–, still from a TV show on Bravo. Eli Klein and Maggie Schaffer.
    film August 27, 2012

    Reality Bites

    OH MY GOD, I’m having a quarter-life crisis. Should I quit my job to join the rank of interns at SoHo’s infamous Eli Klein Fine Art? Sigh.

    It might be a recession, but a girl can dream and drain her trust fund.

    Who doesn’t have a plan? A business plan? A life plan? A night plan? Or, God forbid, a day plan? The only decisive statement in the first two episodes of Gallery Girls comes from Chantal, co-owner of End of Century, a boutique/gallery on the Lower East Side. She knows that she’ll go to yoga in the morning, and then maybe show up to her “job” two hours late. Live free or die trying.

    Welcome

  • Lena Dunham, Girls, 2012–, still from a TV show on HBO. Left: Jessa, Hannah, Shoshanna (Jemima Kirke, Lena Dunham, and Zosia Mamet). Right: Hannah (Lena Dunham). Photos: Jojo Whilden / HBO.
    film April 03, 2012

    Girls Girls Girls

    THE CHRISTMAS after I moved to New York, my mom gave me the complete DVD set of Seinfeld. “Piper,” she said, “your real life is like Carrie Bradshaw, why not try some Kramer?” If only we all lived in a rent-controlled, West Village apartment with a boatload of disposable Manolo Blahniks (remember when those were “in”?) monetizing whinings-on about boys and the dramas of imaginary people. Instead I, like my friends, lived with college coeds in a shabby unchic Morningside Heights eighth-floor walkup. The freshest fashion was sported by advanced elderly moonlighting in nightgowns on Riverside Drive,

  • John Miller, Suburban Past Time (detail), 2012, mixed media, dimensions variable. Installation view.
    picks February 17, 2012

    John Miller

    John Miller’s revered output finds inspiration in the writings of Henri Lefebvre and Walter Benjamin, the drawings of Douglas Huebler, and the indisputable hospitality of the Midwest. His latest site-specific installation, Suburban Past Time, 2012, a work in three “sites,” seems to expand the scenes depicted by Miller’s ongoing series “Middle of the Day,” 1994–, in three-dimensional space and scale by presenting familiar landscapes whose jarring mundanity disarms viewers.

    A behemoth concrete and foam board rock, a synthetic sugar maple tree, and decorative wallpaper depicting an apartment block