Rachel Ellis Neyra

  • picks February 10, 2017

    “The Stand”

    Cobalt-blue and charcoal-colored rubber mulch cover the floor, cutting the space into two triangles of color. More ecosystem than exhibition, the artists in Prem Krishnamurthy and Anthony Marcellini’s postapocalyptic show, “The Stand,” play with light, firmament, plants, totemic forms, and animals. The show changes the doomed mood of the desert playground from Terminator 2 to one of strange playfulness.

    Here, memories of sulky-dreamy Sarah Connor’s muscled arms clinging to a chain-link fence shape-shift. The outstretched arms of a black NBA player in Paul Pfeiffer’s luminous photograph Four

  • picks June 28, 2016

    Tim Portlock

    Tim Portlock’s first solo show at Locks Gallery, “Ash and Gold” (a remix of “Cash 4 Gold,” as American an image as the Hudson River, Air Jordans, and McDonald’s), consists of nine large-scale archival pigment prints—fictional worlds resembling Philadelphia or San Bernardino—and two videos that displace the hills of the sublime into the strip malls and row houses of the “subprime and beautiful,” to quote Fred Moten. In these urban topoi we see sneaker-chandeliers dangling from power lines, busted sofas hallowing street corners, and a yellow amorphous inflatable dancer that likely once adorned a

  • film May 23, 2016

    The Mind’s Eye

    “The increasingly widening circles configure every possible revolution.”1

    BESIDE THE ROOTS of a massive ceiba tree, a female figure lies on her back, eyes closed, a circle painted on her forehead.

    Ceibas are sprawling giants. This tree climbs 130 feet, its waves of roots measure sixty feet wide, making pockets where herds of horses sleep. In Mayan myth, the ceiba’s roots are portals to the underworld, the canopy a threshold of the heavens, and its encircling umbrage a space of healing.

    This ceiba has lived on the island of Vieques, Puerto Rico, for over three hundred years. It remembers runaway