reviews

  • Vivian Suter, Untitled, date unknown, mixed media on paper, 99 5⁄8 × 55 1⁄8"

    Vivian Suter, Untitled, date unknown, mixed media on paper, 99 5⁄8 × 55 1⁄8"

    Vivian Suter

    Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía

    I HAVE NO CLUE what Mick Jagger is trying to communicate in “Jumpin’ Jack Flash,” but I always liked the explosive opening line: “I was born in a cross-fire hurricane.” And in front of Vivian Suter’s rough canvases at the Museo Reina Sofía in Madrid, the lyrics suddenly make sense. These works were born in thunderstorms. Rain, wind, and muddy waters are factors as important as the intentionality and craftmanship of the artist.

    The moisture, the mold, and the dirt of the artist’s flooded studio and the surrounding jungle are as important as the pigments, oils, and acrylics applied to the untreated

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  • View of “Gonçalo Sena,” 2021. From left: Circular Spaces #14, 2020; To Intrude on Nature’s Way, 2021.

    View of “Gonçalo Sena,” 2021. From left: Circular Spaces #14, 2020; To Intrude on Nature’s Way, 2021.

    Gonçalo Sena

    Galería Heinrich Ehrhardt

    The Western tradition has some ineluctable images of water. One is the melancholic Psalm 137 (“By the rivers of Babylon”), which was set to music by Palestrina, Victoria, and Verdi, among many others. Another comes from the myth of Narcissus, whose fondness for looking at his reflection in a lake had tragic consequences. Then there are the material manifestations of our feelings about water: for instance, in the fountains in the palace gardens of the Alhambra or Versailles, which demonstrate architects’ mastery over the forces of nature.

    For his exhibition “Circular Spaces,” Portuguese artist

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