New York

Barbara Kruger

Mary Boone Gallery | Chelsea

The gallery show is usually an occasion to display the year’s latest products, the newest, hottest items off the assembly line of an individual artist’s practice. However, in this exhibition Barbara Kruger eschewed the convention of showing only recent work, preferring to arrange a selection of works from 1981 to the present. The central characteristic of her work–the photograph cropped, enlarged, and juxtaposed with strident verbal statements or phrases–was evident in several forms, ranging from her now “classic” red-framed black-and-white works to variations using lenticular screens, color photographs, and (in a current series) images silkscreened on vinyl. But if such a selection smacks of the retrospective, the term is inappropriate, for who more than Kruger has questioned the relations entertained in specularity and the coherent, comprehensive overview the word “retrospective” implies?

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