January 4, 2010 - Artforum - January 2010
January 4, 2010

January 2010

January 2010


This month in Artforum: Artist and critic John Miller has long been recognized for unpacking our day’s prevailing artistic approaches—to say nothing of the seemingly inexhaustible detritus of culture at large—but only this past fall was he finally the subject of a comprehensive survey, at the Kunsthalle Zürich. For the occasion, Matt Keegan ruminates on the ruins, mannequins, and rummaging on Canal Street that compose the material substrata of Miller’s work, while the artist himself reflects on the kunsthalle’s retrospective look.

“Most people identify with the potato!” —John Miller

Also: Art historian Anne M. Wagner sheds light on Anne Truitt’s retrospective at the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden in Washington, DC, discussing the ways in which this artist has eluded both categorization and sustained critical reception; and curator Helen Molesworth examines Marcel Duchamp’s Étant donnés as it was presented anew at the Philadelphia Museum of Art with supplementary archival material never before displayed.

“The sort of seeing that’s in question for Truitt doesn’t function punctually; it is all about contingency, the how and when of a comprehension that can arrive only gradually.” —Anne M. Wagner

“I have always secretly found accounts of Étant donnés, with their insistence on ‘desire + looking = voyeurism’ as the work’s primary equation, a bit academic. The work’s intense radicality, indeed its consummate mystery, seemed to elude such formulations. —Helen Molesworth

And: Lynda Benglis offers another private history, extracting Polaroids from her 1974–75 “Secret” series to compose a new project for Artforum, titled Klaus 1975 and introduced here by art historian Richard Meyer.

“Benglis approaches secrecy not as a mode of absolute concealment but rather as a form of private knowledge that may be rendered in visual terms so as to be shared with others. In this sense, Secrets is neither scandalous nor meaningless. It is instead a reminder that the texture and syntax of everyday life may also be the makings of art.” —Richard Meyer

Plus: Light Industry’s director Ed Halter explores the inner workings of Bruce McClure’s projector performances; Francine du Plessix Gray reminisces about the perfectionism of Irving Penn; Jordan Kantor considers Luc Tuymans’s first major US survey; Brian Dillon recounts “Modernologies” at the Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona; Amy Taubin gives just the facts about Corneliu Porumboiu’s Police, Adjective; Tauba Auerbach plots the course of Carsten Nicolai’s Grid Index; James Quandt unties Michael Haneke’s The White Ribbon; David Velasco exults in and endures “LIVE FILM! JACK SMITH!,” the recent multimedia conference at Berlin’s Arsenal Institut für Film und Videokunst; artist Alex Israel pens a letter about the past year in Tinseltown; and curator and writer Tirdad Zolghadr names his Top Ten.

Also this month: An international group of writers preview forty shows opening this winter and spring worldwide, including Charles Atlas on Marina Abramović at the Museum of Modern Art, New York; Robert Storr on Leon Golub at the Drawing Center, New York; David Rimanelli on Maurizio Cattelan at the Menil Collection, Houston; Scott Rothkopf on Chris Ofili at Tate Britain, London; Astrid Wege on Charlotte Posenenske at the Palais de Tokyo, Paris; Lars Bang Larson on Bjarne Melgaard at Oslo’s Astrup Fearnley Museum of Modern Art; Claire Doherty on New Zealand’s 4th Auckland Triennial; and many more.

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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 www.artforum.com/guide

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