Hungry Hearts

A Romp Through the Fall Art Season

Video? By the time this season is over you will have seen so many videos in so many darkened rooms you will be glad we didn't talk about it now.

How about photography? Ah photography, you are everywhere, but can you keep up? Going head-to-head will be Anna Gaskell, Andreas Gursky, Thomas Struth, Adam Fuss, Uta Barth, Beat Streuli, Yasumasa Morimura, Sarah Charlesworth, John Coplans, Gregory Crewdson, Sally Mann, and Collier Schorr. Now doesn't that sound fun?

Veteran critic and curator Vince Aletti (who is also my editor at this paper) returns to Wessel+O'Connor to provide a bookend to his "Male" show of last season, with "Female," a wide-ranging photographic treasure trove of over 100 images of women.

An uneven array of painters will be on view, among them John Currin, Carroll Dunham, Jonathan Lasker, Nicola Tyson, Lari Pittman, Lily van der Stokker, Elliott Puckett, Thomas Scheibitz, Diana Cooper, Pet Sourin-thone, Paul Laffoly, John Wesley, David Reed, Frank Stella, and finally the exuberantly Hartley-esque David Bates, about whom Gary Indiana wrote one of the funniest, cruelest, and most unforgettable lines of art criticism, in his Voice review of the 1987 Whitney Biennial: "David Bates? Who the fuck is David Bates?"

As it is in life, so it is in the art world: the background to all this is movement. Galleries are moving like it's 1999, in this case to Chelsea, or thereabouts. The legendary 420 West Broadway building is about to be sold. Sonnabend is decamping to 22nd Street, and Charles Cowels is taking Paul Kasmin's space on Grand Street. Meanwhile, Kasmin is going to Tenth Avenue. Feature will open in a ground-floor space on 25th Street. Lombard-Freid, Debs, Caren Goldin, Robert Miller, and Gorney Bravin & Lee will all be operating in new digs on 26th. Sperone Westwater, Pace, Janis, and Mary Boone are all rumored to be relocating to Chelsea within the next year. Boesky, Petzel, and Alleged are allegedly moving to the meat market. A sad note is the closing of Basilico Fine Arts. And Leo Castelli is dead.

This article could end here, but we live in New York, so it has to finish on a derisive note about excessive professionalism and mindless busyness.

The words of General "Vinegar" Joe Stilwell, on walking into the Washington War Office for the first time just after Pearl Harbor, have a familiarity: "A rush of clerks, in and out of doors, swing doors always swinging, people with papers rushing after other people with papers, groups in corners whispering in huddles, everyone jumping up just as you start to talk, buzzers ringing, telephones ringing, rooms crowded with clerks."

Stilwell's solution: "Someone with a loud voice and a mean look and a big stick ought to appear and yell Halt. You crazy bastards. Silence. You imitation ants. Now half of you get the hell out of town and the other half sit down and don't move for one hour." Way to go, Joe. See you in the trenches.

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