Monday, February 20
If Georg Grosz and Otto Dix were Germany’s grisly moralists charting the rise and fall of the Weimar Republic, then Max Beckmann was the country’s unrepentant epicure—look at all those self-portraits of the artist smoking in sleek tuxes and silken robes, the dark heart of so much glitter and doom. “Max Beckmann in New York” highlights his time as one of New York’s chicest denizens, focusing on fourteen paintings he made while living here, from 1949 to 1950—the year he died, on a corner of Sixty-Ninth Street and Central Park West—as well as a number of earlier pieces, culled from sundry New York collections.
Max Beckmann in New York
Cecil Beaton’s photographs of patrician models in Bendel dresses posing before Jackson Pollocks in the March 1951 issue of Vogue must’ve made a deep impression on David Reed. The works on view in “Painting Paintings (David Reed) 1975” at Gagosian’s Madison Avenue space—vertical canvases with splashy stripes in crimson and jet—call to mind early Dior, parties in Capri, Grace Kelly at midnight. Artist Christopher Wool and curator Katy Siegel, who organized the show, pair the artist’s older works with pieces from Joyce Pensato, Barry Le Va, Andy Warhol, and more, creating a cocktail atmosphere you’ll be sorry to leave.
Painting Paintings (David Reed) 1975
New York has always been a haven for individuals and appetites more
recherché than anywhere else in the United States, so it’s no surprise that some of our most acclaimed queer imaginations—James Baldwin, Merce Cunningham, Djuna Barnes, and Andy Warhol, to name just a handful—were forged and nurtured by this great metropolis. “Gay Gotham,” organized by the MCNY’s Donald Albrecht, Stephen Vider, and Whitney Donhauser, brings together a vast array of paintings, photographs, letters, and assorted ephemera from the likes of Greer Lankton, Leonard Bernstein, Bill T. Jones, Lincoln Kirstein, Harmony Hammond, and more to celebrate this city’s incandescent yet still too hidden queer history.
Kader Attia is a poet, critic, anthropologist, and unrepentant fabulist. For the artist’s second solo exhibition at Lehmann Maupin, he brings us Reason’s Oxymorons, 2015, a multichannel video installation—which made its debut at the Thirteenth Biennale de Lyon—that features “European and African ethnographers, psychiatric and philosophical practitioners, and theorists discussing topics grouped under titles including ‘Genocide,’ ‘Totem and Fetish,’ ‘Reason and Politics,’ and ‘Trance.’”
Kader Attia Reason's Oxymorons
Pleasure and death, sex and terror—Mark Leckey’s subversive forays into the collective hangover that is modern-day, world-suffocating Pop have been making audiences gasp and laugh for nearly twenty years. The British artist’s survey at MoMA PS1—his first major retrospective in the United States, cocurated by the museum’s Peter Eleey, Jocelyn Miller, and Oliver Shultz, along with MoMA’s Stuart Comer—will make me and you and everyone we know more and more hardcore.
Mark Leckey: Containers and Their Drivers
There’s a Beverly Buchanan oil pastel drawing, Georgia Shack with Datura Blooms, 2003, that shows the titular structure, an oddly sentient thing, nearly engulfed by an orange sky and monstrous plants—a landscape informed by Edvard Munch, the horrors of the American South, and the artist’s extraordinary personal history. “Beverly Buchanan—Ruins and Rituals,” part of the Brooklyn Museum’s yearlong programming called “Year of Yes,” celebrating the tenth anniversary of the Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art, will shed a necessary spotlight on this extraordinary and overlooked artist.
Beverly Buchanan Beverly Buchanan: Ruins and Rituals, 1976-2013
MacArthur “genius” Tara Donovan makes spectacular mountains from molehill-like objects. Things such as tar paper, coffee filters, and buttons get multiplied into infinity and transformed into landscape-like sculptures. The artist’s newest body of framed, wall-mounted works turn delicate accretions of styrene cards into gorgeous Op-style abstractions.
Take a gander at Francis Picabia’s Portrait d’un couple (Portrait of a Couple), 1942–43: A pair of doofus, dead-eyed lovers gaze out onto nothingness, while in the background a man holds a woman aloft—à la Fragonard, but waaaaay sicker—beneath a particularly bad rendering of a magnolia tree. Sex machines, hookers, race cars, nihilism—Picabia’s art is the kind that, despite the dazzling march of progress, reflects the merciless imbecility of history and humanity. He was a brilliant thinker, maker, snob, and slut who played art’s endgame faster and harder than perhaps anyone else. “Francis Picabia: Our Heads Are Round so Our Thoughts Can Change Direction,” the first survey in the United States to chart the entirety of this fabulously demented artist’s career, will feature more than two hundred works: paintings, drawings, periodicals, a vast array of assorted ephemera, and one film.
Francis Picabia Our Heads Are Round so Our Thoughts Can Change Direction
Mary Beth Edelson’s Kali Bobbit, 1994—a statue of an s/m goddess wearing a belt of knives and posing on a tiered plinth like a Busby Berkeley ingénue—holds court in “The Devil Giving Birth to the Patriarchy,” the octogenarian feminist’s first exhibition with David Lewis. Edelson’s raven-haired seductress is surrounded by hundreds of the artist’s creepy-creature collages as well as “Woman Rising,” her series of painted silver gelatin prints from 1973.
Mary Beth Edelson The Devil Giving Birth to the Patriarchy
The oscillating cosmic shard that General Zod and his cronies were imprisoned by in Superman II (1980) feels a lot like the shiny, supernatural objects John McCracken produced for almost fifty years. The artist left this dimension in 2011, but his inimitable brand of Martian Minimalism continues to seduce.
John McCracken Planks
ZERO group founders Heinz Mack and Otto Piene helped set the stage for a number of artistic movements—Minimalism, Arte Povera, Op—that needed to stray from the id of American Abstract Expressionism as filtered through European tachisme/art informel. At Sperone Westwater, Mack presents ink drawings, paintings, and Tele-Mack, 1968, a performance/intervention filmed in the Sahara Desert.
“Inventing Downtown: Artist-Run Galleries in New York City, 1952–1965,” scrupulously curated by NYU Steinhardt’s Melissa Rachleff, is a historiographic survey of thinking, making, showing, and collaborating during a pivotal moment in the history of this city’s avant-garde. The exhibition, which starts at Fifty-One East Fourth Street (Tanager Gallery) and travels all the way up to Fifteen West Fifty-Seventh Street (Green Gallery), introduces us to the nascent, crackerjack goings-on from some of New York’s finest, such as Richard Bellamy, Lee Lozano, Lois Dodd, Lucas Samaras, Dan Flavin, Fay Lansner, Red Grooms, Stan VanDerBeek, Phyllis Yampolsky, Mark di Suvero, and Yoko Ono, among countless others.
Inventing Downtown: Artist-Run Galleries in New York City, 1952–1965
Oh but to be a Royal Meissen porcelain, handled with the most tender of care and on lofty display, in Henry Clay Frick’s magnificently appointed mansion. We are invited to inhabit the interior lives of these stately objects in “Porcelain, No Simple Matter: Arlene Shechet and the Arnhold Collection,” which commingles twelve of Shechet’s perverse Meissen-inspired works (pieces the artist made during residencies at the house’s factory in Germany a few years ago) with approximately 140 originals, selected and organized by the artist herself. This is the most appropriate way to enter the summer—in splendor.
Porcelain, No Simple Matter: Arlene Shechet and the Arnhold Collection
Painter Jack Whitten is a scrupulous, stealthy abstractionist who understood, very early on, that paint had sculptural properties as well. The artist’s first exhibition with Hauser & Wirth at its West Twenty-Second Street space pulls together works from his “Portals” and “Quantum Walls” series—images that feel as vast and uneasy as a starless night—created between 2015 and 2017. Also on view is Quantum Man (The Sixth Portal), 2016, a dramatically conceived sculpture made of acrylic, Cretan walnut, lead, Serbian oak, and marble.
Jesus, Charles Manson, the Apocalypse, Gumby—Raymond Pettibon has spilled a lot of black ink rendering all the fetid, funny, and fantastic realms of the postwar American imagination. “A Pen of All Work,” organized by the New Museum’s Gary Carrion-Murayari and Massimiliano Gioni, is the largest survey of Pettibon’s art to date, with more than eight hundred drawings spanning nearly fifty years of perverse peregrinations.
Raymond Pettibon A Pen of All Work
Funereal, funny, disorienting, and emphatically queer—A. K. Burns has the kind of touch that transforms the most quotidian materials and situations into numinous, beautiful experiences. For “Shabby but Thriving,” Burns presents a new two-channel video, Living Room, 2017–, which reconfigures parts of the New Museum’s architecture—its stairwell and basement—as sentient spaces within a living body. The video serves as the connective tissue for the artist’s installation in the museum’s fifth-floor galleries.
A.K. Burns Shabby but Thriving
Merging film, anthropology, and performance, Beatriz Santiago Muñoz’s “A Universe of Fragile Mirrors” focuses on the repercussions of colonialism in Puerto Rico and Haiti with a style that is part documentary, part fever dream. This exhibition, organized by curator María Elena Ortiz and the Pérez Art Museum Miami, will also feature works from El Museo del Barrio’s collection of eight thousand–plus objects, selected by Santiago Muñoz, to augment and complicate her vision.
Beatriz Santiago Muñoz A Universe of Fragile Mirrors
Marisa Merz—one of Arte Povera’s most profound figureheads—has spent much of her life gazing heavenward. We see it in her levitating aluminum “Living Sculptures” of the 1960s and in more recent paintings of female spirits, coruscating and resplendent. Merz’s retrospective at the Met Breuer, “The Sky Is a Great Space”—her first in the US—covers five decades of this wide-ranging intellect’s enigmatic production via sculpture, installation, drawing, and painting.
Marisa Merz The Sky Is a Great Space
Giorgio de Chirico was Surrealism’s grand architect, a designer of eerie buildings and empty piazzas culled directly from the collective subconscious. Giulio Paolini, a rigorous Conceptualist who’s more than a little Surrealism-adjacent—and a longtime admirer of de Chirico—often dives into the artist’s haunted cityscapes, creating works that feel like revelations discovered in dreams, which always seem to exist only in traces upon waking. The artists’ exhibition at CIMA is a dialogue in code, metaphysical and gorgeous.
Giorgio de Chirico and Giulio Paolini The Center for Italian Modern Art presents de Chirico and Paolini
In a text on Hanne Darboven’s Kulturgeschichte 1880–1983 (Cultural History 1880–1983), 1980–83, from the February 2017 issue of Artforum, Bruce Hainley discusses the artist’s inveterate smoking. Indeed, a habit so simultaneously glamorous, malodorous, and cancerous makes perfect sense when thinking about this glossolalic and image-drunk roman à clef that conflates Darboven’s dark personal history with that of Germany’s. Her immersive, 1,609-piece installation from Dia’s permanent collection has not been on view in the US for more than ten years—see it now.
Hanne Darboven Kulturgeschichte 1880–1983 (Cultural History 1880–1983)
Kishio Suga, one of the Japanese Mono-ha movement’s founding figureheads, is a poet of form. His sculptures and assemblages, utilizing workaday materials such as wood, wire, stone, and steel, summon a presence that is immanently cosmic. The artist’s presentation at Dia: Chelsea—his first solo museum exhibition in the United States, curated by Alexis Lowry and Jessica Morgan––will feature a re-creation of Placement of Condition, 1973, an installation made from cut stones, among other of Suga’s numinous objects.
Each painting in Baldessari’s latest series, “Miro and Life in General,” 2016, pairs a detail from a particular Joan Miró painting with a classic Hollywood film still and a single word, such as “reliable,” “necessary,” and “true.” These mashups of language, popular culture, and art history create seductive and enigmatic messages.
John Baldessari Miró and Life in General
The Brazilian artist continues her subtle, poetic investigation of painting with a new series of works that, at first glance, appear colorless. Challenging the viewer to see color where there is technically none, Gomez presents white-painted canvases and wood that simultaneously reference the history of the monochrome as well as Brazilian Neo-concretist modified surfaces.
Casting a critical eye over the role of female artists in European museums, the Guerrilla Girls revisit their own poster from 1986 that deadpanningly states: “It’s Even Worse in Europe.” Having sent questionnaires to arts institutions across Europe asking about their collections and exhibitions, the feminist activist collective presents nearly four hundred responses—funny, heartbreaking, and terrifying —as part of an archive-based exhibition.
Guerrilla Girls Is it even worse in Europe?
This survey of prints made by American artist Jim Dine between 2013 and 2016 includes a new series depicting singing poets, made by master printers in Austria, Paris, and the US (“Poet Singing,” 2016). Elsewhere in the exhibition, compositions featuring the artist's signature motifs—hearts, Venus, Pinocchio—contrast with large rainbow-hued abstractions.
Jim Dine Poet Singing
The New York–based artist/activist collective presents a new series inspired by Caravaggio, Rubens, and Poussin. Appropriating imagery from these artists, the works—which have been enhanced by an algorithmically determined contrast scale and feature superimposed writing and drawings—suggest a contemporary, and marvelously ugly, understanding of the term “Baroque.”
The Bruce High Quality Foundation Pearls
This survey show dedicated to Peter Halley focuses on the period, between 1983 and 1987, during which the American artist developed his visual vocabulary of flat and textured geometric compositions. Using these forms to create what have been dubbed “Neo Geo” compositions, Halley’s “cells” began to describe what he perceives to be the rigid divisions of social spaces.
Peter Halley Paintings from the 1980s
This is the second exhibition featuring collaborative paintings made by the sunshiny and cynical LA-born and -bred artist and author. The works, shown in pairs and rotated at regular intervals, feature excerpts of Ellis’s texts superimposed onto banal images of Los Angeles (sunsets, architecture, surfers, etc.), creating an evocative, if patchy, Angeleno daydream.
Alex Israel & Bret Easton Ellis
Koester looks back at his twelve-year career via an immersive meta-installation made up of a 16-mm film projection, digital video, photography, and audio works—a rich, even physical, journey between various aspects of his thinking and making. Also on view is a new film, Maybe This Act, This Work, This Thing, 2016, in which the artist evokes the birth of cinema by directing vaudeville-style performers to imitate the mechanics of filmmaking.
Joachim Koester In the Face of Overwhelming Forces
Having transformed Paris’s Palais de Tokyo in 2013 and New York’s Park Avenue Armory in 2015, Philippe Parreno now takes over the Turbine Hall with a complex choreography of sound, light, objects, and videos. The fully automated exhibition can be considered as a single Gesamtkunstwerk upending traditional exhibition stagings of time and space.
Hyundai Commission: Philippe Parreno
Known for his genre-defying “Combines” and large-scale proto-Pop silk screens, Robert Rauschenberg also worked with photography, printmaking, papermaking, and performance over the course of his six-decade career. This retrospective (the first of its kind since the artist’s death in 2008) weaves together seemingly disparate works to create a cogent overview of a dazzlingly multidisciplinary oeuvre.
Timed to coincide with Turk’s survey at Damien Hirst’s Newport Street Gallery (until March 29), this exhibition includes new works inspired by Donald Judd’s quintessential boxes. Complicating—if not fully annihilating—any Minimalist associations with the cube, Turk uses wooden Juddish boxes to display various used and found items, such as a crumpled juice carton (Nature, Nurture, 2017) and a small fruit crate (Purgatory, 2017).
Gavin Turk Give In
Honoring David Hockney on the occasion of his eightieth birthday, this exhibition—which will travel to Paris’s Centre Pompidou and then to New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art—features many of the artist’s most iconic works. From pools to portraits, Hockney's oeuvre offers a beautiful and subversive description of postwar British and American culture. The extensive selection also includes drawings, prints, photographs, and videos made over the course of six decades.
Recently acquired by the German Nationalgalerie, of which this venue is but one affiliated institution, Adrian Piper’s installation and participatory group performance The Probable Trust Registry: The Rules of the Game # 1–3, 2013–15, proposes that visitors sign a contract with themselves pledging to act ethically, honestly, and reliably, in return for which they receive a registry of people who have made the same promise by the end of any iteration of the performance. A resource that, given the current political climate in the US and Europe, could hardly be more timely.
Adrian Piper The Probable Trust Registry: The Rules of the Game #1-3
Invalidenstraße 50-51 / +4930266424242 / smb.museum/
Tue - Fri 10am to 6pm, Sat - Sun 11am to 6pm, Thu 10am to 8pm
Proposing a new approach for depicting the disorienting space/time compression wrought by digital communication, Pieter Schoolwerth’s latest series of works are created via a complex process involving photography, drawing, digital manipulation, and sculpture, which together function, as the artist described in his 1000 Words feature, like an operating system. Playful and vibrantly colorful, the final results feature figurative ciphers in various stages of relief—both models for producing further paintings and sculptural artifacts of a painterly process completed with flourish.
Pieter Schoolwerth Model as Painting
Born one year apart and both based in New York, Julie Mehretu and Jessica Rankin are known for their highly personalized approaches to abstraction. Here, Mehretu’s gestural and chaotic compositions evoking urban energy appear in stark contrast with Rankin’s astronomy-inspired skyscapes.
Julie Mehretu and Jessica Rankin Struggling With Words That Count
A pair of large-scale works by Rirkrit Tiravanija describes two different, but not unrelated, political struggles in Asia. Untitled 2014–2016 (Curry for the Soul of the Forgotten) features a large bronze pot surrounded by projections of cooking which were recorded in Chiang Mai, Thailand (where, notably, the artist helped found the Land Foundation, an art and environmental project, in the late 1990s), and alludes to recent uprisings and political struggles in the country. Installed in a separate room, the multipanel painting Untitled 2016 (Freedom Cannot be Simulated, South China Morning Post, September 26-27-28-29-30, 2014), 2016, across which are emblazoned the words FREEDOM CANNOT BE SIMULATED, features collaged pages from the South China Morning Post dating from the time of the so-called Umbrella Revolution in Hong Kong, during which protestors challenged the Chinese electoral system.
Rirkrit Tiravanija (curry for the soul of the forgotten)
The first-ever large-scale exhibition of contemporary art at this modern art museum pairs George Condo’s paintings, made between the 1980s and today, with works by the likes of Cézanne, Picasso, Matisse, Klee, and Giacometti culled from the collection of Berlin’s Nationalgalerie. The loaded context heightens the impact of Condo’s peculiar perspective on art-historical styles and movements—alternately ironic and reverential.
George Condo Confrontation
Schloßstraße 1 / +4930266424801 / smb.museum/
Tue - Fri 10am to 6pm, Sat - Sun 11am to 6pm
For her latest self-portrait series, Cindy Sherman impersonates past-their-prime 1920s-era Hollywood stars, posed as if for glitzy studio publicity shots. Set in relief against digitally manipulated backgrounds, her elaborate costumes, heavy makeup, and studied poise turn away from glamour, treading into the ridiculous, strange, vulnerable, and poignant.
After rising to prominence in the 1950s LA art scene, where he cofounded the Ferus Gallery with Walter Hopps, Edward Kienholz spent much of his time collaborating with his wife, Nancy, in Hope, Idaho, near his friends and patrons Monte and Betty Factor. Key works on view from the Factor Family Collection include preparatory drawings for important installations such as the sickening Five Car Stud, 1972, and the early, articulated assemblage The Medicine Show, 1958–59.
Edward and Nancy Kienholz A Selection of Works from the Betty and Monte Factor Family Collection
The second part of Alfredo Jaar’s trilogy exploring the emotional power of a single image, Shadows, 2014, describes the atrocious final days of the Somoza dictatorship in Nicaragua in 1978, as captured by Dutch photographer Koen Wessing. The installation’s wrenching centerpiece features Wessing’s photograph of two sisters who have just been told of their father’s murder.
Alfredo Jaar Shadows
In advance of their major retrospective to be held at London’s Tate Modern this fall, Ilya and Emilia Kabakov are treating Berlin to a selection of recent paintings. Typical of the couple's work, these pieces depict their Soviet homeland using dual (and dueling) realities, which conflate historical periods and blend personal and collective memories.
Ilya & Emilia Kabakov Paintings 2012 - 2015
This presentation of Ian Wilson’s work examines the South African Conceptual artist’s practice in relationship to work by Hanne Lippard, Adam Pendleton, and Paul Elliman. Wilson’s largely ephemeral oeuvre, which often takes form only through discussions and other modes of spoken discourse, is complemented by three solo exhibitions of the younger artists. In the spirit of Wilson’s dematerialized abstractions, a weekly program of performances, readings, lectures, and events will take place at this institution and around different locations throughout Berlin for the duration of the show.
Before his untimely death last year, artist and Underground Museum cofounder Noah Davis conceived a series of exhibitions of works from MoCA’s collection, but installed here, west of the trending downtown area and away from the city’s usual gallery districts. This show, titled “Non-Fiction,” is the second such collaboration between the two institutions, redistributing works by Kara Walker, Henry Taylor, Theaster Gates, Robert Gober, David Hammons, and Deana Lawson, among others, back into the city to address the systemic violence perpetrated on black people.
The first North American retrospective for Native American artist, activist, poet, and performer Jimmie Durham, titled “At the Center of the World,” is a rare chance to see work from a major American artist who not only left the US in 1987 but has since then intentionally withheld much of his practice from audiences here. With close to two hundred objects dating from 1970 to the present, the exhibition will notably feature his sculptural assemblages, often made from natural materials such as bone, stone, and wood. Finally, we have a chance to at least glimpse the edges of Durham’s expansive world.
Jimmie Durham At the Center of the World
Salle’s latest large-scale paintings are based on enlargements of pages from 1960s issues of Life magazine, but the artist has worked and reworked the compositions so much that the source material has become utterly obscured in collage-like free associations of figurative and abstract imagery. Photographic, painterly, and filmic, these vibrant works evoke movement while also managing to make time stop dead in its tracks.
David Salle New Paintings
James Wellings’s works made between 1974 and 2016 show the wide range of the artist’s aesthetic and conceptual interests in photography. Among the examples of his various experiments with different techniques and subjects is a series of Polaroids of bikes from 1975–76, black-and-white portraits of artists such as Matt Mullican and David Salle, and a moody landscape of Philip Johnson’s Glass House shot through colored filters (Glass House [Lavender Mist], 2014.)
James Welling Chronology
Paris-based artist Bruno Botella presents puzzling new sculptures that question usefulness and creative processes. Driving home a connection between clay sculpture and childbirth, Suzanne Tournante (Lazy Susan), 2017, is an inverted potter’s wheel that has been pierced with a head-size hole. Below it sits a sad, lumpy mound.
Bruno Botella Dormir à l’envers (chugging along with a funnel of steam)"
At first glance the French painter’s latest energetic compositions appear wholly abstract. On closer inspection, however, Congnée’s “Crowds,” 2014–16, reveal themselves as such—landscapes filled with throngs of people so densely packed together there is barely room to breathe.
Philippe Cognée Crowds