New York

Sarah Morris

Petzel Gallery | West 18th Street

The artist-patron relationship has yielded plenty of great art over the centuries, from Michelangelo’s over-the-top Moses on the tomb of Pope Julius II to Velázquez’s dutiful Las Meninas and Goya’s sneering The Family of Charles IV. Given that Sarah Morris’s patrons are the modern Medici of Hollywood, one might have hoped for a similarly trenchant portrait of twenty-first-century elites from her film Los Angeles, 2004—or at least a compelling view of the city after which her fifth work in the medium is named. Instead, she offers viewers a morass of cliché; a montage of tourist-board images without the steady hand of a Richard Prince to turn them into knowing art; a Koyaanisqatsi without Godfrey Reggio and Philip Glass; an Access Hollywood without the cheerfully ridiculous Pat O’Brien to act as our guide.

Access can hardly have been the issue. Shot in the ten days leading up to the 2004

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