• L.A. Raeven

    ICA - Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston

    I’ve often been bored looking at art in a gallery, but I don’t remember ever before experiencing a work that seemed bored with me. This was the possibly dubious accomplishment of L.A. Raeven, a pair of artists from Amsterdam who seem to have found in their own twinhood the perfect metaphor and mechanism for the modernist ideal of self-referentiality: a closed communicative circuit in which no viewer need be addressed. Their work here consisted of a pair of pairs, or perhaps even a pair of pairs of pairs. The overarching pairing was of two video installations, Wild Zone I, 2001, and Wild Zone 2

    Read more
  • Michael Smith and Joshua White

    Hales Gallery | London

    The story so far: Having purchased land in the Catskills on which to build a conference center for his Wellness Solutions Group, dot-com entrepreneur Mike Smith has made an exciting discovery. The site used to be home to QuinQuag, a Utopian artists’ colony founded in the late ’40s and bankrolled by a certain Isabelle Nash, patroness of the arts and the wife of a rich dental-supplies manufacturer. QuinQuag’s reputation, we learn, rests largely on its output of folksy handpainted tiles and clunky wooden rocking chairs. Both enterprises were resounding financial failures, though one of the rockers

    Read more
  • Claude Temin-Vergez


    It’s surprising, when you think about it, how many women painters lately have been using Abstract Expressionism as a foil for their own work. In New York one can easily think of artists as various as Sue Williams, Suzanne McClelland, and Cecily Brown. Now, from France by way of London (where she was educated and currently works), comes Claude Temin-Vergez, who clearly has taken Jackson Pollock's poured paintings as her reference point, thereby showing a degree of nerve that's either admirable or foolish depending on your point of view. (It says a lot for both artists that whatever else one thinks

    Read more