December 1, 2010 - Artforum - December 2010 in Artforum
December 1, 2010

December 2010 in Artforum

December 2010 in Artforum

For its annual year-end round up, Artforum has gathered an international group of critics, artists, musicians, and philosophers to chart their favorite picks from the past twelve months. From performances to publications, major retrospectives to studio visits, this issue traces the memorable moments of a landmark year.

More than a dozen major figures—including Daniel Birnbaum, Lynne Cooke, Chris Dercon, Okwui Enwezor, Jack Bankowsky, Richard Hawkins, Christine Macel, and Pauline J. Yao—list their Best of 2010. Alongside these countdowns, prominent scholars Thomas Crow, Hal Foster, and Anne M. Wagner each recall a significant exhibition with in-depth reviews.

“A pinnacle in a year that witnessed a number of impressive midcareer retrospectives, Rodney Graham’s subtle show at MACBA revealed why he is held in such high regard among artists of diverse persuasions.” —Lynne Cooke

“The question of what it means to be an artist today is perhaps nowhere more pressing than in China, where contemporary art enjoys few outlets and even fewer freedoms.” —Pauline J. Yao

“From the wax and glue in the paste-ups, I immediately jumped to bodily fluids and found in Larry Johnson’s latest work a tertiary addition to the studium/punctum matrix: sputum.” —Richard Hawkins

Also this December, Artforum features two essays and an artist’s project homing in on diverse cultural phenomena pertinent to the past year. For 2010, philosopher, critic, and sociologist Bruno Latour considers “The Year in Climate Controversy” and the Copenhagen summit; critic John Kelsey recaps “The Year in Television,” and artist Michael Smith wryly evaluates art-school gambits in “The Year in Education.”

“We have a problem, but we don’t have the public that goes with it. And no wonder, for the climate crisis asks for nothing less than a radical revolution.” —Bruno Latour

“Like the working day, the boundaries and the notion of the ‘channel’ have been overflowed.” —John Kelsey

“I have come up with three rules that appear on all my syllabi: 1. Clean up after yourself. 2. You cannot physically hurt yourself or anyone else in the classroom. 3. You cannot jeopardize my job.” —Michael Smith

In addition, John Waters, Amy Taubin, James Quandt, Mark Webber, and Marie Losier assess this year’s best in film; Bjorn Copeland, Femi Kuti, Masami Akita, Gudrun Gut, and Eszter Balint provide musical insights; David Velasco presents dance highlights; and T. J. Clark, Catherine Lord, Alexander Nehamas, Jasia Reichardt, and many others weigh in with their new book picks.

“Virginie Despentes walks us through such messy topics as violence, prostitution, porn, and class with an eye to the effects of misogyny on both genders.” —Catherine Lord

“A scatological, gay, s/m, borderline snuff movie amazingly embraced by a wide, American blue-collar family audience.” —John Waters on Jackass 3D

Plus: A wide group of artists—including Richard Artschwager, Ann Craven, Abraham Cruzvillegas, Karen Kilimnik, Charles Ray, A. L. Steiner, Terry Winters, and many more—decide on the Artists’ Artists of 2010; J. Hoberman illustrates the influence of Norman Rockwell on his major collectors, Steven Spielberg and George Lucas; and Tim Griffin surveys the expansive scope of the 29th São Paulo Bienal.

Visit Artforum online at

To subscribe, visit

Visit artguide—Artforum‘s free directory of the international art world, listing art fairs, auctions, and current gallery and museum shows in more than 400 cities—at

Share - December 2010 in Artforum
  • Share
Click to subscribe to e-flux and be the first to receive the latest news on international exhibitions and all e-flux related announcements
Subscribe to e-flux
Be the first to receive the latest news on international exhibitions and all e-flux related announcements.
Subscribe to architecture
Explore the most recent content from e-flux architecture and urbanism
Subscribe to e-flux programs
Keep up-to-date on all upcoming talks, screenings, and exhibitions at e-flux in New York