Matthew Wilder

Dawn Kasper

November 2007

There are moments, looking at new art in Los Angeles, when one feels trapped in some cosmic-joke undergraduate thesis without end—a purgatory of the puerile. It’s exactly this quality that makes Dawn Kasper’s “Life and Death,” guest-curated… READ ON

PICKS

Elsa Mora

November 2007

No one in Los Angeles has as sweet a tooth for the exquisite miniature as Darryl Couturier. Earlier this year, he offered up a dazzling roomful of bite-size works by Maritta Tapanainen—diminutive, but one of the most exhilarating shows I’ve… READ ON

PICKS

Tatzu Nishi

October 2007

As luck would have it, I saw Tatzu Nishi’s show at Blum & Poe just a few hours after watching Tsai Ming-liang’s hardcore-porn/musical-comedy/Warholian-slo-mo masterpiece The Wayward Cloud (2005), and somehow Tsai’s Taipei and Nishi’s Los … READ ON

PICKS

Stephen G. Rhodes

October 2007

Everyone knows artists carry around a lot of baggage, but those carry-on items are now manifested more visibly than ever: Show after show reproduces the Stella Artois–stained detritus of studio life in EPCOT-style hyperreal detail. Stephen … READ ON

PICKS

Whitney Bedford

October 2007

Geistige Körperlichkeit, the German philosopher Friedrich Wilhelm Joseph Schelling’s phrase, translates as “spiritual corporeality,” bespeaking a seeming paradox that might be no contradiction at all. At least, it isn’t when the condition … READ ON

PICKS

Song Kun

August 2007

The antique customs, culture, and philosophies of Asia, vacuum-packed into the 3-D, 24/7 package of postmodernity: Could there be a triter visual subject or one more prone to the most facile of ironies? (Look at Jia Zhangke’s The World and … READ ON

PICKS

Melora Walters

August 2007

Melora Walters’s paintings of beasts in crisis have a seismic, upsetting sensuality. Her For Goya (all works 2006) forces gouts of red scribble—angry-child slashes that might be blood or a variant on a comic book’s “!!!”—out of the mouth of… READ ON

PICKS

“You Will Be Re-materialized Through Your Secrets”

July 2007

Utter the words the secret in Los Angeles, and everybody thinks they know what you're talking about—you know, that self-help book that tells you that if you think the word rutabaga, rutabagas will manifest in front of you and so on. Is the … READ ON

PICKS

Margaret Adachi

June 2007

In his masterpiece “The Oyster,” the great, largely forgotten French poet Francis Ponge found a whole cosmology in that dollop of mucus we drown in Tabasco and quickly imbibe: “Beneath a firmament (properly speaking) of mother-of-pearl, the… READ ON

PICKS

“Psychobotany”

June 2007

Is it just me or do words like sustainable and organic give off a whiff of xenophobia? Those who long to go off the grid and eat raw foods in a yurt are recoiling in no small part from the human density and hybridity of urban life itself—because… READ ON

PICKS