• Charles Atlas, Institute for Turbulence Research, 2008, four-channel video projection, color, sound, 6 minutes.

    Charles Atlas

    Migros Museum für Gegenwartskunst
    Limmatstrasse 270
    February 17 - May 13

    Curated by Raphael Gygax

    Since the 1970s, Charles Atlas has worked at the limits of video technology with a range of luminous collaborators, from choreographers such as Merce Cunningham and Michael Clark to nightlife luminaries including Leigh Bowery, Dancenoise, and, recently, the raunchy leftist drag queen Lady Bunny. The Migros Museum, however, will present five multichannel installations that represent Atlas’s interests beyond performance-based work. One gallery will juxtapose Plato’s Alley, 2008, featuring an orderly black-and-white grid, with Institute for Turbulence Research, 2008, a disorienting environment of spinning images that seems to offer an immersive update of Dorothy’s bedroom view of the twister. They’ll also show the monumental Glacier, 2013—an outlier for Atlas, as it relies on stock footage—and, as the museum mysteriously stated, “two all new pieces.” In a call to the artist, I learned that one of these, Instant Fame, 2003/2006, will involve repurposing the live-edited video portraits he made during his 2003 show at New York’s Participant Inc. The other, he said hesitantly, after a suspenseful pause, will be “something . . . with monsters.” 

  • Rob Pruitt, Suicide Painting (Black No. 1), 2015, acrylic on linen, 81 × 81".


    Kunsthalle Zurich
    Limmatstrasse 270
    December 16 - May 13

    Curated by Daniel Baumann

    In Andy Warhol’s A, A Novel from 1968, John F. Kennedy dies during church. (Americans heard the word of God and then the news that God did not exist as of 12:30 pm CST.) Warhol made sixteen widowed-Jackie portraits. It’s with the same flat promiscuity that post-Pop artist Rob Pruitt celebrates the five-hundredth anniversary of Ulrich Zwingli’s Reformation in Zurich with “The Church,”“an exhibition cum community space cum church.” Cheeky for the idolator responsible for  2011’s The Andy Monument! While sermons from theological students don’t promise the heavenly high of a cocaine buffet—or the melodrama of glossolalia—the exhibition serves as a suitably sacrilegious retrospective: twenty “Suicide Paintings,” seven “People Feeders” (“the miracle of the five loaves and two fish), and the thematically relevant installation The Congregation, 2010. I like to think the seventy-seven chairs wrapped in silver plumber’s tape pay homage to our society’s true believers, tinfoiling their windows against alien attack. Perhaps the Viagra-fountain “holy water” was nixed on account of its inherent Catholicism.