New York

Lothar Baumgarten

Marian Goodman Gallery | New York

A long hallway separated the two primary elements of Lothar Baumgarten’s recent show at Marian Goodman, suggesting the distance between the locales of the projects—one focused on the South American rain forest, the other on the Hudson River Valley north of New York City—as well as the contrast in approaches (soundless imagery for the former, imageless sound for the latter) to what turned out to be congruent conceptual goals, namely an investigation of how “knowledge” of a given place is constructed.

The exhibition demanded real commitment from viewers, with the works unfolding over hours rather than minutes. This challenge to attention is of a piece with the brand of poetic pedagogy that has long marked Baumgarten’s work, in which difficult questions around history and context, around the complex relationship of natural and cultural systems of knowledge, always trouble conventional notions

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