When it came to the awarding of prizes on the first day of the 55th Venice Biennale (through Nov. 24), performance won. The Golden Lion for best artist in the international exhibition, "The Encyclopedic Palace," went to Tino Sehgal, whose work was one of the exhibition's very few live performances. And Sharon Hayes received one of the two "special mentions" for artists in the international exhibition, in recognition of her video of interviews with students about gender and sexuality at a women's college in the U.S. Read More
In contrast to Massimiliano Gioni's intentionally overwhelming "Encyclopedic Palace," the main exhibition at the Venice Biennale, it is something of a relief to turn to the more modest show "vice versa," housed nearby in the Italian Pavilion in the Arsenale and curated by Bartolomeo Pietromarchi. Rather than attempting the encyclopedic, "vice versa" focuses on a series of seven paired concepts and often pursues them through live performance. Though in all instances these works shy away from spoken text, they are an effort to create a dialogue in a landscape conceived of in theatrical terms.
The dichotomy of body/history frames the discussion in the first room. Towers clad in wood and braced with steel rise up from low concrete platfo… Read More
Rhizome's fourth annual "Seven on Seven" conference on Saturday dovetailed eerily with the Boston Marathon bombings. The purpose of the get-together is to foster dialogue between art and technology, but the bombings drew attention to tracking and surveillance in a surprisingly personal way when it was revealed that one of the participants had run the Marathon. Read More
Despite general art world trends toward the performative or dematerialized work, Art Basel Miami Beach 2012 was clearly running a brisk trade in paintings and sculpture. Still, a smattering of video and some performance were thrown into the mix.
The main fair at the Miami Convention Center featured a selection of video displayed in wooden "pods" at the middle of the building, while some galleries found room in their booths to show some as well.
If you haven't already, cruise by the Essex Market in New York's Lower East Side to catch David Levine's Habit, which runs through Sunday, Sept. 30. Habit, presented by French Institute Alliance Française and Performance Space 122 as part of the Crossing the Line Festival 2012, plays continuously every day for eight hours, but you can watch however much you want and come and go as you please. That's one of the interesting things about Levine's type of art-theater. It frees the spectator from the purgatory of theater architecture and theater etiquette. Habit is also free in the sense that there's no admission charge.
2012, aluminum, wood, sublimation print on polyester and concrete, 71 3/4 by 122 1/2 by 135 inches overall. Courtesy Tanya Bonakdar Gallery, New Yor