PRINT December 2014


Michael Fried

James Welling: Monograph (Aperture) is a sensationally attractive book. It was published to coincide with a large survey exhibition of the artist’s work from the 1970s through 2012 that opened at the Cincinnati Art Museum and traveled to the Hammer Museum in Los Angeles, where I caught up with it. The main text, by James Crump, is an exemplary account of Welling’s career to date: It proceeds in chronological order, series by series, with unflagging intelligence and critical acumen. Not only does Crump do justice to the critical literature, but time and again he contributes new information about Welling’s practice based on extensive conversations with the artist and provides insights into the work that even the most informed and sophisticated reader can only be grateful for. A short conversation between Welling and Museum of Modern Art curator Eva Respini (“On Photography and

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