new-york

Alexander Kosolapov

Ruth Siegel Gallery

I like the flat bright wit of Kosolapov’s paintings, which make both artistic and politically critical sense. Andy Warhol’s serial monotone gets a new lease on life when it is used to display tin after tin of Russian caviar. A Kasimir Malevich painting as a Marlboro design may be irreverent, but it reminds one, with eloquent directness, of the way advanced art necessarily becomes conformist imagery in order to survive in the world. McLenin’s, 1991, with its combination of McDonald’s golden arches, Lenin’s profile, and the full-faced Kentucky Fried Chicken Colonel (three instantly recognizable celebrity images), makes Heidegger’s point—that America and the USSR are motivated by essentially the same consumer idealism—perversely concrete. My favorite piece is This is not Steinbach, 1990, which consists of three busts of Yoda of extraterrestrial fame, two busts of Lenin of revolutionary fame,

Sign-in to keep reading

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

Not registered for artforum.com? 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 ONLINE EDITION for $5.99.

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