History: January 2010 Archives

FDR talks to the press; the press talks to FDR

I was only slightly confounded to realize I had no interest in watching the speech last night; didn't even think about recording it in case it turned out POTUS actually said something. When it comes to a corporate one-party state, I guess I make a bad subject.

And I'm old-fashioned: As unsatisfying as they may almost always have been, I still have some good memories of actual Presidential news conferences. Not recalling the last time I had heard of one, this morning I went on line looking and found that Obama hasn't had a press conference in six months.

Transparently nontransparent.

[image from swamppolitics]

Beuys's cane continuously raps on the surface of Ustvolskaya's percussion box, one corner of which rests on a copy of Castaneda's "Don Juan"

the hugely-outsize Boli, constructed of sacrificial materials, including one of Evo Morales's acrylic sweaters, contemplates Malinowska's replica of Malevich's "Black Square"

a group of slightly-scruffy habitués of McCarren Park "performing the Solar System model falling apart", accompanied by toy piano, in a video using Messiaen's "Visions de l'amen" as sound

Joanna Malinowska has installed her own aggressively-idiosyncratic diagram of the universe, "Time of Guerilla Metaphysics", inside the two gallery spaces of CANADA, on the Lower East Side.

It's not a simple walk-through show. A certain amount of attention has to be paid when the universe is being re-imagined. Its appeal may only develop slowly, at least partly because it's surfaces are largely brown and gray, and because its pieces echo the diversity of Malinowska's model, the universe itself, but ultimately the installations, both separately and together, register as powerful, tantalizing, and, ultimately, deliciously enigmatic. Their mysteries mirror the artist's sources themselves, which include traditional West African totems, Joseph Beuys, Copernicus, Mammoths, Galina Ustvolskaya, Oglala Sioux dance, Spinoza, Kazimir Malevich, Evo Morales, and Brooklyn’s McCarren Park.

I left the gallery thinking that visitors to this, her second New York show could only be scratching the surface of this artist's creative imagination.

This page is an archive of entries in the History category from January 2010.

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