previews

  • Brice Marden

    Hamburger Bahnhof
    Invalidenstraße 50-51
    June 1–September 1, 2007

    MoMA - The Museum of Modern Art
    11 West 53rd Street
    October 29, 2006–January 15, 2007

    San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA)
    151 Third Street
    February 17–May 13, 2007

    Curated by Gary Garrels

    Painting, for Brice Marden, is “about transformation. Taking that earth . . . turning it into air and light.” For four decades he has been practicing his alchemy, and if there’s a flaw in his pictorial legerdemain it may be that he makes it look too easy. This retrospective of more than one hundred paintings and drawings, though, should correct the misapprehension that all this grandeur and elegance come without effort. And with his career now falling symmetrically into two parts—paintings consisting of single or combined monochrome panels from the mid-’60s through the mid-’80s; works since then that employ calligraphic gesture—it’s hard not to wonder: Does this summation herald a new mutation to come? Travels to the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Feb. 17–May 13, 2007; Hamburger Bahnhof, Berlin, June–Sept. 2007

  • Anselm Kiefer, Wege der Weltweisheit: Die Hermannsschlacht (Ways of Worldly Wisdom: Arminius's Battle), 1978, oil and woodcut on paper mounted on canvas, 6' 5 1/2“ x 7' 10 1/4”. From “Eye on Europe.”

    Anselm Kiefer, Wege der Weltweisheit: Die Hermannsschlacht (Ways of Worldly Wisdom: Arminius's Battle), 1978, oil and woodcut on paper mounted on canvas, 6' 5 1/2“ x 7' 10 1/4”. From “Eye on Europe.”

    “Eye on Europe: Prints, Books & Multiples, 1960 to Now”

    MoMA - The Museum of Modern Art
    11 West 53rd Street
    October 15, 2006–July 1, 2007

    Curated by Wendy Weitman and Deborah Wye

    Throughout art history, the printed form has largely been given a backseat to the “loftier” media of painting, sculpture, and drawing, all of which enjoy a veneer of originality unavailable to reproductive arts. This exhibition of some three hundred works counters that tendency by demonstrating in six thematic sections—including “Language,” “Expressionist Impulse,” and “A British Focus”—the primary role printed matter (graphic works, publications, wallpaper) has played in transforming conventional European artistic processes and distribution networks and, in turn, contemporary art at large. Highlights include the language-based works of Conceptual artist Marcel Broodthaers; political projects of collectives and individuals (Atelier Populaire, Joseph Beuys); and recent examples of subversive irony from artists like the late Martin Kippenberger.

  • “El Greco to Picasso: Time, Truth, and History”

    Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum | New York
    1071 Fifth Avenue
    November 17, 2006–March 28, 2007

    Curated by Carmen Giménez and Francisco Calvo Serraller

    Once again the Guggenheim will use its rotunda to unfurl the art of a single nation. Previous exhibitions of the art of Brazil, the Aztec Empire, and Russia put unfamiliar objects on view, and there were discoveries to be made. Spanish painting as a category is different. Spanning the sixteenth through the twentieth centuries, this show will include approximately 135 works by mostly high-profile artists including El Greco, Velázquez, Goya, Zurbarán, Picasso, Miró, and Dalí. The painters are well known, though not primarily because they are Spanish. The curators are opting for a thematic organization. The claim is not about a continuous history of Spanish painting but about affinities among artists dealing with certain subjects. It will be interesting to see if familiar painters look different when brought together and presented in this way.

  • “Picasso and American Art”

    Walker Art Center
    725 Vineland Place
    June 17–November 9, 2007

    Whitney Museum of American Art
    99 Gansevoort Street
    September 28, 2006–January 28, 2007

    San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA)
    151 Third Street
    February 25–May 28, 2007

    Curated by Michael FitzGerald

    No artist was as important to the development of twentieth-century American art as Pablo Picasso—though he never even visited the United States. Whether as a figure to emulate or a yoke to buck, Picasso cast a shadow across the Atlantic that permeated even the remotest recesses of the country’s artistic psyche. Guest curator and Picasso scholar Michael FitzGerald assembles nearly forty of the Spaniard’s works and some 120 objects by Americans—including Stuart Davis, Jackson Pollock, and David Smith—who used his oeuvre as a point of departure. The show presents this mammoth figure through the eyes of those who cared (and sometimes worried) most about the implications of his diverse production. Travels to the San Francisco Museum of Modern art, Feb. 25–May 28, 2007; Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, June 17–Nov. 9, 2007.

  • Alex Katz, Ada in a Pillbox Hat, 1961, oil on linen, 14 x 19". © Alex Katz/Licensed by VAGA, New York, NY.

    Alex Katz, Ada in a Pillbox Hat, 1961, oil on linen, 14 x 19". © Alex Katz/Licensed by VAGA, New York, NY.

    “Alex Katz Paints Ada”

    The Jewish Museum
    1109 Fifth Avenue
    October 27, 2006–March 18, 2007

    Curated by Ruth Beesch

    “Ada says she’s getting tired, a little, of being ‘the girl in the painting,’ whose pictures look more like her than she does,” poet and critic James Schuyler remarked in 1962. Unfortunately for her, Ada—still favored as a subject by her husband, Alex Katz—remains framed by this paradox. Katz has been depicting his better half since the late ’50s, when his tightly worked flat forms, often painted on Abstract Expressionist–size canvases, anticipated the commercial look of Pop. This exhibition’s thirty-nine portraits show Katz’s wife through eyes that watched her change from the enigmatic bohemian of Ada in Black Sweater, 1957, to today’s cool and collected art-world doyenne. Embodying the ever-changing styles and poses of her times, Ada Katz proved the perfect muse for a painter of contemporary life.

  • Harri Kallio, Riviere des Anguilles #5, 2002, color photograph, 30 x 35". From the series “The Dodo and Mauritius Island, Imaginary Encounters,” 2002–2004. From “Ecotopia.”

    Harri Kallio, Riviere des Anguilles #5, 2002, color photograph, 30 x 35". From the series “The Dodo and Mauritius Island, Imaginary Encounters,” 2002–2004. From “Ecotopia.”

    “Ecotopia: The Second ICP Triennial of Photography and Video”

    International Center of Photography Museum (ICP)
    79 Essex
    September 14, 2006–January 7, 2007

    Curated by Edward Earle, Joanna Lehan, Christopher Phillips, Carol Squiers, Brian Wallis

    With the significant exception of the objective, documentary style loosely known as “New Topographics,” named after a 1975 group show at the George Eastman House in Rochester, New York, landscape photography has been generally perceived as one of the more conservative genres of the medium—resilient to innovation, aloof from contemporary discourse, upholding exhausted pictorial traditions. All of this has changed in the past decade, as complex issues of environmental duress—an increasingly urgent part of the global conversation—have transformed contemporary landscape photography. “Ecotopia” will collate this phenomena with some eighty works by nearly forty artists—an international roster including An-my Lê and Simon Norfolk.

  • John Latham

    MoMA PS1
    22-25 Jackson Avenue at 46th Avenue
    October 29, 2006–January 8, 2007

    Curated by David Thorp

    A decade before John Latham’s death last January at age eighty-five, I worked in his neighborhood bookshop in London, ordering the abstruse tomes on time and quantum mechanics that fed what this show calls his “unified theory of existence.” By then, he had gone from creating largely Conceptual work—like his 1966–67 action in which he literally chewed up Clement Greenberg’s Art and Culture—to making paintings, sculptures, performances, installations, and films, and his openness and iconoclasm had already influenced four decades of British artists. Touring from the UK’s John Hansard Gallery, this retrospective will be his first significant presentation in the United States. With more than thirty works (including all eleven of his hanging sculptural “clusters” of books, plaster, and wire), it should illuminate the fiercely individual thinking of one of the key British artists of the past century.

  • Annie Leibovitz

    Brooklyn Museum
    200 Eastern Parkway
    October 20, 2006–January 21, 2007

    San Diego Museum of Art
    1450 El Prado, Balboa Park
    February 10–April 22, 2007

    Curated by Charlotta Kotik

    Long before American culture attained its present state of celebrity fixation, Annie Leibovitz brilliantly created a new form of star portraiture that helped redefine the genre and influenced all subsequent work in it. Adjusting the then-careful calibration of public and private, Leibovitz shared with a magazine audience the privilege of a witty and breezy intimacy. This exhibition of more than two hundred photographs from 1990 to 2005 includes depictions of the photographer’s extended family and of pop-culture icons, from Nicole Kidman to William S. Burroughs. Proposing an autobiographical field of vision for the normally reticent Leibovitz, the show suggests an emotional depth that usually eludes celebrity culture.

    Travels to the San Diego Museum of Art, Feb. 10–Apr. 22, 2007; and other venues.