Los Angeles

Carter Potter

Sue Spaid Fine Art

With the art world knee-deep in both nagging insecurities and a backlash desire to appear confidently hip, in-jokes are all the rage; indeed, about the worst thing you can say about a work of art these days is that it looks simply clever. This spells trouble for Carter Potter’s latest output, which is, if nothing else, as smart as a barbed whip. Potter weaves together motion-picture film strips as if they were colored thread and displays the resulting “fabric” on stretcher bars like paintings. Clever, yes, but Potter’s celluloid quilts manage to lead a surprisingly robust afterlife; the gesture is much more than a one-liner. Like a lot of art today, Potter’s winks; the difference is it also delivers.

Simultaneously high-tech and handcrafted, spectacular and homespun, Potter’s patchworks possess that certain mix of cosmic materiality and vague optimism that Peter Plagens once described as

to keep reading

Artforum print subscribers have full access to this article. Please sign in below.

Not registered for artforum.com? Register here.

SUBSCRIBE NOW and save up to 65% off the newsstand price for full online access to this issue and our archive.

Order the PRINT EDITION of the January 1992 issue for $17 or the ONLINE EDITION for $5.99.

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