The New Museum's new five-floor exhibition identifies 1993 as a turning point in New York art, a time when the ideological battles between "isms," ranging from minimalism to neo-expressionism, gave way to something new. What the new paradigm entails, exactly, we're still determining. "NYC 1993: Experimental Jet Set, Trash and No Star," with its 161 works--each of which was made or exhibited in New York during the title year--succeeds in identifying 1993 as a pivotal moment, when phenomena like the AIDS crisis, the Internet, a shifting political climate and the convergence of avant-garde with big money changed the way we make and talk about art. Read More
The six figure paintings in Matthew Watson's debut solo exhibition, though differing in dimension, all share roughly the same scale. Each draws the viewer close enough to engage the artist's subjects—but not too close.
That calculated distance reflects the nature of the relationships Watson renders here, and the complex layers of commerce and influence that define them. The portraits in "Commission / Barter / Sale," on display through Feb. 24 at Joe Sheftel Gallery, on Manhattan's Lower East Side, are of Watson's art world peers and financiers—his personal network of curators, buyers, collectors and fellow artists. They are friends, but they are friends with benefits.
Galerie Lelong's new exhibition of Nancy Spero's work, "From Victimage to Liberation: Works from the 1980s & 1990s" tells the story of human conflict, wherein women and their bodies are prisms through which violence and transcendence refract. On view through Feb. 16, the exhibition's 17 works are in turns unsettling and celebratory, tattered but heroic, like a battle-worn flag.
Walter Benjamin wrote that the souvenir "is marked by the increasing self-alienation of the person who has inventoried his past as dead possessions." It embodies, he added, "the extinguished experience." Indeed there is a certain souvenir-like quality to Tom Sanford's often caricatured, sometimes comic portraits of the dead in "100 Little Deaths," equal parts extinguishment and roadside attraction—a collection of death masks for the TMZ age.
Two slide carousels, 80 slides each, approx. 9-minute loop. Courtesy Callicoon Fine Arts, New York.