Posts archive: November 2003

if not fancy-free: gallerist Katrina Traywick locked the doors at the Berkeley location for the last time Saturday. Taking its place is Traywick Contemporary, which will “continue to champion local and national artists, to work with clients on an individual basis and to showcase the stimulating and innovative art for which the gallery has become known,” all from a private office.

- Meredith Tromble [Monday, November 24th, 2003]

Kenny Schacter has given this legend and his team not only a mini retrospective, but also a mind bending architectural commission to redesign his new gallery space in the west village. the results are bilbowery and bildhauerlich…billed hourly by a driven egomaniac who has always been great at explaining his sculptural work in social terms. first story metal mesh gallery ceiling morphs into second story galvanized, gallerists power desk: you do the math on this elaborate craftwork. what v & k have done together here is so daring and ostentatious that I left feeling both dumbfounded and pathetically jealous. highlights from vito’s “rehearsals for architecture” include documentation of the infamous jerk-off piece, vintage fotos of the artist biting himself and several diorama-like works which hover between design and fantasy. definitely see the rove space show as well as the new gallery around the corner on 14 charles lane, where graham gillmore’s inaugural show just ended.

vito acconci @ rove
thru dec. 15

- Charles Linder [Monday, November 24th, 2003]

Tom Hunter appropriates an aesthetic language of the nineteenth century, while revealing lives of squatters in the twentieth. The British artist has mastered a use of light in creating alluring visual tableaux. You can see Vermeer and the Pre-Raphaelites in the colors and light which inform these idyllic scenes. Hunter creates mythical scenes from the English social landscape which seem at once familiar and disturbing.

Tom Hunter @ Yancey Richardson Galle
thru november 29

The production value of Christian Lemmerz’s sculptures is one of the first elements, which attracts the eye upon entering his room. The glassine quality of the polished white marble is such a classical device. Then you notice more detail: in “Undead”, the decapitated marmoreal body of a Greek god is coupled with John the Baptist’s severed head that apparently is offering fellatio. Upon closer inspection, we see that the head is actually that of Michael Jackson. “Son of Jesus”, a milky, crystalline figure of a baby boy lies softly on a low plinth, sporting the requisite stigmata. Finally,“Rio Kid” seems to be sucking his bronze thumb underneath his shirt while in fact he actually has his face buried in a bag of glue.

Christian Lemmerz @ DCA Gallery
thru november 30

- Aude de Bourbon [Monday, November 24th, 2003]

to see temporary site specific works in San Francisco’s Mission District?

Live performances/events by Jarrett Mitchell, Julio Morales, Jason Jagel, Bob Linder, Annee Olofsson, Mungo Thomson, Euan Macdonald, Dave Muller and more occur Saturday November 22 from 3-6 pm.

Maps and more information are available at the Jack Hanley Gallery located at 395 Valencia Street, San Francisco. The project, curated by Kate Fowle and Jack Hanley, runs through December 14, 2003.

- amy berk [Friday, November 21st, 2003]

A survey exhibition of 3 decades David Ireland’s work opens at the Oakland Museum on November 22, 2003 and runs through March 14, 2004.

- Cheryl Meeker [Friday, November 21st, 2003]

Opening in Austria in conjunction with">steirisher herbst, the 30-year-old festival of the arts in Styria, is a wonderful new art museum, the Kusthaus Graz. A gift from the city of Graz to itself on the occasion of the city being chosen European Cultural Capital for 2003, this new biomorphic structure by London architects Cook and Fournier floats above the street level. Viewed from the hill above town, the strange dark green roofline makes an exciting contrast and connection with the red roof tiles of the historic old town, and with the clock tower on the top of the hill dating from 1712, the bell dating from 1382.

And inside the ">Kunsthaus Graz is one of the most interesting shows I have seen recently: Einbildung, which explores perception with intriguing interplay between works by a wide variety of artists. Offerings from Bridget Riley, Liz Larner, Taft Green, Olafur Eliasson, and Herbert Brandl are brilliant, scintillating.

Between the new museum and the old clocktower runs the river Mur, where Vito Acconci floats a new cafe/bar, ">03-bar. This hip real life art piece makes a fascinating transition for Acconci’s important conceptual work. Is it decadent or fabulous? Maybe it is both: the food is great, the cocktail list is pages long, and the spectacle of the bar floating on the river at night is at once futuristic and enchanting.

- Cheryl Meeker [Tuesday, November 18th, 2003]

This Saturday, November 15, eat, drink, and buy great art for a cause at Visual Aid’s 10th annual Big Deal Art Sale. Over 500 artworks, many by Bay Area noteables, can be purchased for only $110. A silent auction featuring important works of art by Timothy Cummings, Bruce Conner, Travis Sommerville, Beth Yarnelle Edwards, Enrique Chagoya, Nina Glaser, JoeSam, Veronica Rojas, and many others, and a $5 raffle for fun merchandise and prizes round out the evening.

Doors open at 4 pm and the sale runs from 5-8 pm at SOMArts Gallery at 934 Brannan Street in San Francisco. Admission is $25 with all proceeds benefitting Visual Aid’s programs for artists with life-threatening illnesses.

See Visual Aid for more info, or call (415) 777-8242.

- amy berk [Thursday, November 13th, 2003]

Yael Bartana’s “Kings of the Hill” at PS1 documents a ritual of motorized play in the coastal hills outside Tel Aviv. In it, dozens of men in 4WDs navigate up and down steep and barren slopes of rock and sand near the sea, their efforts appearing both pointless and menacing. No greenery is present on the hills, and it is not hard to read the repeated ascensions (and numerous failed ascents) as brief moments in a territorial battle that has long since destroyed the disputed terrain.

Julian Pozzi’s ink and watercolor drawings at Jeff Bailey feature blocky grids that are initially based on playground equipment and swimming pools, but grow in a semi-organic ways to form mutant structures whose functions appear as playful as they are indecipherable.

Leon Steele’s “Farmland Skies” at In Camera takes perilously cliché materials (horses, rural landscapes, “majestic” skyscapes) and turns them into something richly new. Closeups of the backs and shoulders of horses serve as an abstract horizon line that frames and destabilizes the sky scenes above them. Equine imagery features in a surprising number of shows in Chelsea at the moment, but this is the only one to really make it work.

The “Seriously Animated” video series at the Philadelphia Museum of Art finishes with Hirsch Perlman’s “Two More Affect Studies,” a pair of motion meditations on the open road. While one stop-motion journey down a twisty mountain road comes up a bit dry, the other, a multi-planed desert scene with a pair of trains set to Johnny Cash’s “I Walk the Line,” is a transfixing mix of movement, dislocation, and gently shifting horizon line.

- Ed Osborn [Tuesday, November 11th, 2003]

From the editors