September 1, 2009 - Artforum - September 2009
September 1, 2009

September 2009

September 2009

This month in Artforum: The Fifty-third Venice Biennale. Art historian Thomas Crow, curator Lynne Cooke, and critic Diedrich Diederichsen take stock of Daniel Birnbaum’s “Fare Mondi//Making Worlds,” while, looking elsewhere in the City of Bridges, Tom Holert immerses himself in Cerith Wyn Evans and Florian Hecker’s radical “abstract opera” No Night No Day; Claire Bishop reflects on Jackson Pollock Bar at the United Arab Emirates pavilion; Sarah K. Rich gives the lay of the land at François Pinault’s Punta della Dogana; and Linda Norden appraises a John Wesley survey mounted by the Fondazione Prada.

“For artists and the art world, on the evidence of this Biennale, the record of twentieth-century modernism constitutes a birthright, at once cherished and forbidding. The question is how to position such a legacy, alongside postmodern self-reflexivity, on the plane of performance.” —Thomas Crow

“According to the principle of Mr. Spock art, the artist presents the audience with an amazing riddle and then with a calculated solution, notable for its lack of ambiguity, which will make everyone say, ‘F-A-A-A-Scinating!’” — Diedrich Diederichsen

Plus: “The Pictures Generation, 1974–1984.” The hallowed halls of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York would seem an unlikely setting for this exhibition of artistic insurgents who so famously dissected the images and words of the mass media with cutting ken. Art historians Michael Lobel and Howard Singerman consider this first retrospective look at a historical moment that still holds great sway over our own. Following their discussion is a special project for Artforum by cover artist Sherrie Levine, who presents a new series related to her 1981 work, canonized by the Met show, “Untitled (After Walker Evans)”—the implications of which are teased out in an introduction by art historian Johanna Burton.

“Curator Douglas Eklund seems to deeply distrust ‘French philosophy’ or continental theory and, even more, the theoretically informed criticism that emerged in relation to postmodernism. For him, art criticism always comes too late, and always in excess.” —Howard Singerman

And: Ina Bloom writes on Matias Faldbakken’s us-versus-them attitude at the National Museum of Art, Architecture, and Design in Oslo; Mignon Nixon looks at Roni Horn’s recent retrospective at Tate Modern in London; Gary Indiana diagnoses Uli Edel’s Baader Meinhof Complex; Amy Taubin drinks in Claire Denis’s heart-wrenching 35 Shots of Rum; James Meyer vets the films of Luke Fowler at the Serpentine Gallery, London; Carroll Dunham argues that Picasso’s painting, based on a recent show at Gagosian Gallery in New York, is better late than never; Jay Sanders finds the highlights in Masaya Nakahara’s twelve-part, yearlong release, “Monthly Hair Stylistics”; Joshua Kit Clayton gives his Top Ten; and Emily Apter remembers activist and founding scholar of queer theory Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick.

Also this month: An international selection of scholars and critics preview fifty shows opening in the season ahead across the globe, including Jeffrey Kastner’s interview with Jack Bankowsky and Alison M. Gingeras about their forthcoming exhibition at Tate Modern, “Pop Life: Art in a Material World.”

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