vendredi 7 mars 2008

la Biennale du Whitney 2008 (2)

L'installation Cheese de Mika Rottenberg, où est projetée Valkyrian milkmaids, est l'une des plus remarquées de la Biennale

Premières réactions à la Biennale du Whitney de cette année: c'est Holland Cotter, critique du New York Times, très critique vis-à-vis du marché de l'art, très cultural studies (post-colonialisme, gender...), bref l'une des plumes insoupçonnées de la Big Apple. Décryptage:

(Avec le nombre croissant des foires internationales d'art) "the turnover is great for business, but it has made time-lag surveys like the biennial irrelevant as news."

"this year we have a Whitney show that takes lowered expectations as its theme — lessness, slowness, ephemerality, failure (in the words of its young curators). A biennial for a recession-bound time? That’s one impression it gives. With more than 80 artists, this is the smallest edition of the show in a while, and it feels that way, sparsely populated"

"Past biennials have had a festive, party-time air. The 2004 show was all bright, pop fizz; the one two years ago exuded a sexy, punk perfume. The 2008 edition is, by contrast, an unglamorous, even prosaic affair. The installation is plain and focused, with many artists given niches of their own. The catalog is modest in design, with a long, idea-filled essay by Ms. Momin, hard-working, but with hardly a stylistic grace note in sight. A lot of the art is like this too: uncharismatic surfaces, complicated back stories."

Remarqués: Rodney McMillian, Phoebe Washburn, Spike Lee, Marina Rosenfeld, Kembra Pfahler & the Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black.

"the overall tenor of the show is low-key, with work that seems to be in a transitional, questioning mode, art as conversation rather than as statement, testing this, trying that. Assemblage and collage are popular. Collaboration is common. So are down-market materials — plastic, plywood, plexiglass — and all kinds of found and recycled ingredients, otherwise known as trash."
ex.: Jedediah Caesar, Charles Long, Cheyney Thompson, Ry Rocklen

"Devotees of painting will be on a near-starvation diet, with the work of only Joe Bradley, Mary Heilmann, Karen Kilimnik, Olivier Mosset and (maybe) Mr. Thompson to sustain them.
Hard-line believers in art as visual pleasure will have, poor things, a bitter slog. But if the show is heedless of traditional beauty, it is also firm in its faith in artists as thinkers and makers rather than production-line workers meeting market demands. Not so long ago, Whitney biennials were little more than edited recaps of gallery seasons. Much of the art in them had already been exhibited in galleries and commercially preapproved. By contrast, the Whitney commissioned the bulk of what appears in the 2008 biennial expressly for the occasion. If some artists failed to meet curatorial hopes, others seized the chance to push in new directions. Whatever the outcome, the demonstration of institutional faith was important. It means that, for better or worse, the new art in this show is genuinely new."

"Almost every biennial includes a contingent of influential elders. This one does."
Mary Heilmann (dont il décèle l'influence chez Karen Kilimnik, Frances Stark et Rachel Harrison)
John Baldessari (chez Joe Bradley, Patrick Hill, Mika Tajima & Howie Chen des New Humans).
"Mr. Baldessari’s use of fragmented Hollywood film stills in his work has opened new paths for artists exploring narrative. And there’s a wealth of narrative in this biennial, much of it in film.
ex.: Harry (Harriet) Dodge & Stanya Kahn, Amy Granat & Drew Heitzler, Mika Rottenberg, Javier Téllez ("a beautiful new film")

"Architecture and design form a subcategory of motifs in the biennial, partly as a sendup of the luxe environments that much new art is destined to inhabit, but also in line with the show’s concern with transience and ruin."
ex.: Alice Könitz, Matthew Brannon, Amanda Ross-Ho, William Cordova

"The passing of baldly political art from market fashion has been much noted during the past decade. But the 2008 Biennial is a political show, at least if you define politics, as the curators do, in terms of indirection, ambiguity; questions asked, not answered; truth that is and is not true."
ex.: Adler Guerrier ("impressing"), Omer Fast, William E. Jones, Natalia Almada, Robert Fenz, Daniel Joseph Martinez ("an extremely interesting artist"), Spike Lee, Coco Fusco

"an ambitious program of performance art."
Olaf Breuning, Mario Ybarra Jr., M K Guth, Kembra Pfahler & the Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black

Et il parle de l'exposition du New Museum, “Unmonumental: The Object in the 21st Century”, comme chevauchant la sensibilité de la Biennale de cette année.

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