An embarrassment of style at the Independent
The First Art Newspaper on the Net    Established in 1996 Tuesday, July 16, 2024


An embarrassment of style at the Independent
Kutlug Ataman’s “Mesopotamian Dramaturgies/Journey to the Moon,” a single-channel video in which a voice-over describes a sequence of photographs, at the Independent art fair in New York. This year’s fair is in overdrive, with exhibitors taking big swings in dozens of directions. (Alexa Hoyer/Independent via The New York Times)

by Will Heinrich



NEW YORK, NY.- The Independent is a stylish affair. Carefully curated and relatively small, it can always be counted on to look good, but this year its style is in overdrive. Occasionally it’s pinch-hitting for substance, mere showiness with nothing behind it. Sometimes, as in Ruby Neri’s bravura ceramic sculptures in the fair’s special 15th-anniversary “15x15: Independent 2010-2024” exhibition, at Spring Studios in TriBeCa, visual pizazz hits a kind of critical mass, becoming substance in itself. Most often, though, these 172 artists showing with 89 exhibitors are taking big swings in lots of directions — severe abstraction, obsessive figuration, decaying sneakers — so that making a list of standouts was nearly impossible. The following eight booths are more like a personal playlist to get you moving around the floor. (Note that there are no booth numbers.) But don’t forget to explore the corners, too, where you’ll find Margot Samel showing trompe l’oeil paintings by Olivia Jia; Houston-based publisher and gallery F selling F. Richard Coldwell’s dystopian art-world novel “Lies From the Flies on the Wall”; and “Moby Dick” with drawings by Alex Katz at the Karma Bookstore.)

FIFTH FLOOR

Bureau


Three large square oil paintings by Kate Spencer Stewart could almost pass for dark brown monochromes. Step closer: They’re actually a rich, bloody maroon, speckled with flickers of cardinal red and long streaks of bright, toxic green. With silent composure and whispering depths, they’re a thought-provoking contrast to the inventive landscapes of Michael Ho next door at Shanghai gallery Vacancy.

Niru Ratnam

Turkish filmmaker Kutlug Ataman’s “Mesopotamian Dramaturgies/Journey to the Moon” is a single-channel video in which a voice-over describes a sequence of mostly black-and-white photographs. It tells the story, at once hopeful and cynical in a magical realist sort of way, of a small town in 1950s Turkey, its collective imagination sparked by a politician’s speech, trying to send a minaret to space with balloons. The implicit question is, “Are any of us really capable of democracy?” A dozen acrylic and graphite drawings of birds by Sutapa Biswas, accompanied by her video “Magnesium Bird,” make for a piquant counterweight.

SIXTH FLOOR

Ricco/Maresca Gallery and Christian Berst Art Brut


For me, the fair’s most memorable event will be the American debut of Polish photographer Tomasz Machcinski (1942-2022), who started dressing up in character and shooting thrilling, dangerous and vital self-portraits in the early 1960s. His astonishingly emotive and variable face, as everyone from Mohandas Gandhi to Adolf Hitler as well as numerous men and women sprung only from his own imagination, has to be seen to be believed. Machcinski’s self-portraits are presented alongside a strangely beguiling trove of Polaroids of women on TV by Tom Wilkins (1951-2007), also enjoying its first American showing. Jointly presented by New York’s Ricco/Maresca and Christian Berst Art Brut from Paris.

i8 Gallery

Five graceful canvases by painter Ryan Mrozowski make up the first appearance at the Independent of this hip gallery from Reykjavik, Iceland. To two of his signature paintings of orange-tree foliage, dense but delicate meditations on what it means to commodify sensual pleasure, Mrozowski adds a few orange half circles floating freely on top of the green leaves. The effect is like a magician’s very dry wink at the end of a well-executed trick. In three diptychs that the artist calls “split paintings,” more foliage is alternately grayed out to call forth a haze of understated questions about perception, binocular vision and the bicameral mind.

Broadway

Jessie Henson uses an industrial sewing machine to apply closely set lines of thread to paper that she then adorns with metallic leaf. The process both causes the paper to buckle and fixes its buckling in place, making every sculptural, sensual, sometimes tortured-looking undulation an integral part of each piece. Altogether the work offers a compelling combination of texture, eccentricity and discreet subversion of art-historical categories. Even the most jaded art-world intellectual should feel comfortable enjoying the pretty colors, most of which Henson seems to have borrowed from a private cache of vintage shag rugs.

The Approach and Chris Sharp

The hundreds of little oblong dots that cover Glenn Goldberg’s paintings evoke textiles, Australian Aboriginal art, and stick and poke tattoos, among other things. But mainly what they do, in this joint presentation from Angeleno gallerist Chris Sharp and London gallery the Approach, is disrupt your ability to read the works as figurative, as abstract or even simply as whole compositions — instead each canvas is a complex ledger of distinct decisions about color and pattern. It makes sense that despite the sparrowlike silhouettes inhabiting all six pieces in this exhibit, the New York City-born artist, as quoted in the galleries’ publicity materials, says, “There are no birds in my work.”

SEVENTH FLOOR

March


Susan Te Kahurangi King is well known for her lucid, sinuous pencil drawings of cartoon characters. Often they look impossibly perfect, like projections of professionally animated dream images — even when the characters are crammed into one half of an otherwise empty page. It’s an illuminating treat to see this lineup of odder and less finished examples of this New Zealand artist’s work, shown here to contextualize one larger work. Donald Duck trips into an ironic riverine fate on one sheet of paper stained with grease; on another, a graphite gray Tweety Bird with enormous eyes stares at the viewer, frozen in space, maybe flying, maybe falling.

King’s Leap

This Chinatown gallery brings four intense works by Magnus Maxine, each presenting a dense paper pulp surface, colored with oil paint, layered over a page or full spread of The New York Times. The two larger pieces, which feature a heavy pink cross and a circular arrangement of rays, are by far the strongest. But all four seem to have been made not so much by building on top of the day’s news but by ripping it away to reveal the rougher, more primal world of half-formed signs and symbols that surges underneath.



Independent

Through Sunday, Spring Studios, 50 Varick St., Manhattan; independenthq.com, $45 for a single-day pass.

This article originally appeared in The New York Times.










Today's News

May 11, 2024

An embarrassment of style at the Independent

Massive fossil donation helps Brazil's National Museum rise from the ashes

UBS donates major American landscape photographs to National Gallery of Art

Surrealism reigns at Tefaf Art Fair

Cass Elliot's death spawned a horrible myth. She deserves better.

Group exhibition at Kunsthal Mechelen explores the fountain as an artistic object

'Size matters: Scale in Photography' on view at Kunstpalast Dusseldorf

Homeowners who planned to demolish Marilyn Monroe house sue Los Angeles

Salon 94 presents 'Ione Saldanha: The Time and The Color'

He sang 'What a Fool Believes.' but Michael McDonald is in on the joke.

Buxton Contemporary unveils major exhibition 'The same crowd never gathers twice'

Exhibition features five works of Niki de Saint Phalle's late-career Tableaux Éclatés series

Yorke Antique Textiles publishes "Ceremonial Textiles of Japan: 18th to 20th Centuries"

Collection of Baroness Gabriele Langer von Langendorff tops one million at Roland Auctions NY

Impressed, but not transported, by 'Spirited Away'

Artist debuts "Reverie Unbound" in solo exhibit in Santa Fe

Roberts Projects opens a survey of paintings from 1998 to 2015 by Eberhard Havekost

Interdisciplinary artist presents newly commissioned sculptures at Detroit Institute of Arts

Bernard Pivot, host of influential French TV show on books, dies at 89

A waterfront house with the message 'all or nothing at all'

Lawns draw scorn, but some see room for compromise

In Mexico, a house that returns to the well

What does 'post-emerging' look like in today's dance landscape?

London Gallery Weekend announces events highlights, artist commissions and curator bursaries

7 Tips to Invest in Diamond Jewelry

The Allure of Indonesia: Unveiling the Beauty of Teak Outdoor Furniture

6 Tips to Make Your Next Game-Launching Event More Exciting and Engaging

How to Maximize Your Compensation After a Car Accident?

Thriving Career Paths with a Computer Science Degree

Prime-CC.com Review Is a Comprehensive Guide to Accounts & Features

Siqi Qin Advocates for China's Cultural Diversity

Sprawling landscape of personal finance

Music Therapy: Performance at Sunrise Senior House

Yongwen Dai: Shaping the Next Era of Design with Cutting-Edge Innovations

Choosing the Perfect Drawing Tablet for Aspiring Artists




Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .

 



Founder:
Ignacio Villarreal
(1941 - 2019)
Editor & Publisher: Jose Villarreal
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Ramírez
Writer: Ofelia Zurbia Betancourt

Royalville Communications, Inc
produces:

ignaciovillarreal.org juncodelavega.com facundocabral-elfinal.org
Founder's Site. Hommage
to a Mexican poet.
Hommage
       

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site
Tell a Friend
Dear User, please complete the form below in order to recommend the Artdaily newsletter to someone you know.
Please complete all fields marked *.
Sending Mail
Sending Successful