Vince Aletti


1 Philip-Lorca diCorcia (PaceWildenstein, New York) Because the subjects of diCorcia’s larger-than-life head shots are unaware that their pictures are being taken, they exist in a weird state of grace. Hyperalert urban radar temporarily down, these pedestrians look touchingly vulnerable: alone and adrift. The photographer “cringes” at the idea that his work is humanistic and insists he’s “not the slightest bit sympathetic” toward his subjects, yet he never thwarts our sympathy for them. DiCorcia’s people are ordinary citizens of the twenty-first century, and that’s exactly why they’re so compelling right now. After September 11, Manhattan was flooded with posters of the “missing,” and diCorcia’s anonymous New Yorkers suddenly had a host of companions whose ghostly presence grounded the show in grief and tenderness.

2 Andreas Gursky (Museum of Modern Art, New York) Even if you

to keep reading

Artforum print subscribers have full access to this article. If you are a subscriber, sign in below.

Not registered for Register here.

SUBSCRIBE NOW for only $50 a year—65% off the newsstand price—and get the print magazine plus full online access to this issue and our archive.*

Order the PRINT EDITION of the December 2001 issue for $17 or the ONLINE EDITION for $5.99.

* This rate applies to U.S. domestic subscriptions.