New York

Susan Philipsz

Tanya Bonakdar Gallery

Many artists who use appropriation do so as a strategy for ironic commentary, parody, or critical reflection. Susan Philipsz is not among them. The reason has to do with her medium as much as her attitude: The forty-three-year-old Scottish artist is known for her a cappella renditions of well-known songs, recordings of which she typically installs in unfurnished, sometimes outdoor, locales. (She has played her “reinterpretations” of songs by such bands as Echo & the Bunnymen in the emptied galleries of the Malmö Konsthall, and a barcarole from the opera The Tales of Hoffman under a bridge in Münster.) For “Here Comes Everybody,” her New York gallery debut, Philipsz continued this tradition, recording two separate versions of “Trees and Flowers,” a twee 1983 song of agoraphobia and anomie by the Glaswegian punk duo Strawberry Switchblade.

The exhibition was installed in two rooms on the

to keep reading

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

Not registered for Register here.

SUBSCRIBE NOW for only $50 a year—65% off the newsstand price—and receive the print magazine plus full online access to this issue and our archive.*

Order the PRINT EDITION of the Summer 2008 issue for $17 or the ONLINE EDITION for $5.99.

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