Wonder Women

A season of old masters, Gumby, biomorphs, and cell phones

Dennis Hollingsworth
April 7–June 10

Nicole Klagsbrun, 526 W 26th, 212-243-3335

Hollingsworth loves paint, and in the past has slathered it on, leaving disks of pigments stacked like pancakes, thick brown burrs jutting out an inch from the canvas, and palette-knife gouges deep in the fat surfaces. Such virtuoso technique never marred his chromatic smarts and boisterous compositions; it will be interesting to see how much weight his new work throws around.

Eva Hesse explores the grotesque in this untitled piece.
Tony and Gail Ganz Collection, LA
Eva Hesse explores the grotesque in this untitled piece.


See also:
  • Faust Things First
    A mammoth production of the epic verse gets a stateside staging
    by Michael Feingold

  • Don't Call It Noise Music
    Japanese metal bands summon power and energy from the '70s
    by Zach Baron

  • To Serve and Protect: A Freestyle Series Rumbles On
    by Jim Macnie

  • Vision Quest
    Get your avant-garde fix with plenty of experimental cinema this season
    by Ed Halter

  • Postmodern Pioneer: The Next Generation
    Bokaer gets physical, digital, and naked
    by Elizabeth Zimmer

  • Dancing in Your Sleep: Label Microcosm Calms the Nerves
    by Tricia Romano

  • Tweaking Their Legacies: Composers Reinvent Themselves
    by Leighton Kerner

  • A Mechanized Culture and its Equally Mechanical Population Meet
    by Carla Blumenkranz

  • Long-Bin Chen
    April 21–June 3

    Frederieke Taylor, 535 W 22nd, 646-230-0992

    Like a sculptor working in granite, this Taiwanese artist carves his work from large blocks. His material, however, is considerably less durable: One large bearded face is crafted from a stack of 10 Brooklyn phone books, leaving striations where the covers join; veins of light and dark are determined by the areas of text and white space. Chen's forms retain a veneer of solidity while conveying an existential transience.

    'Never Mind the Bullocks, Here's Amanda Lear'
    April 21–June 3

    Envoy Gallery, 535 W 22nd, 212-242-7524

    Lover to Bryan Jones and David Bowie, a Salvador Dalí muse and stunning looker—though her guttural voice incited rumors that she was a transsexual, which didn't halt her rise to disco divadom—Amanda Lear had quite a time of it this past century. Now pushing 60, her own artwork, plus the work of nine others inspired by her exploits, continues the legend.

    Lee Mullican
    April 25–July 15

    Grey Art Gallery, NYU, 100 Washington Sq E, 212-998-6782

    After a wartime stint with the Army Corps of Engineers, Mullican (1919–1998) used the patterning he'd seen in aerial photos and topographical maps as inspiration for his small (as compared to typical abstract paintings of the '50s) canvases. His decorative, densely crosshatched, and carefully applied brushstrokes convey both the charm of a vibrant tiki bar menu and the breadth of a complicated, rolling landscape.

    Mary Temple
    April 27–May 27
    Mixed Greens, 531 W 26th, 212-331-8889

    Temple paints trompe l'oeil shadows of plants and window frames, sometimes trailing down to the floor, on both interior and exterior walls, causing viewers to hold their hands in front of the work in an attempt to determine the light source. This upcoming show features a complex shadow cast in a windowless room, a moment in time frozen in place.

    Marco Boggio Sella
    May 13–June 17

    625 W 27th, 212-337-9563

    In 2004, this Italian-born artist, who splits his time between Turin and Brooklyn, reimagined Matisse's L'Atelier Rouge as an environment of rough-hewn red walls, ceilings, and floors, festooned with equally rough sculpture, furniture, easels, and brightly colored paintings whose subjects ranged from 19th-century etchings to '70s comic-book panels. His upcoming show "Dreams and Nightmares of the African Astronaut" is a collaboration with artists in Africa, some of whom are skeptical that men ever walked on the moon.

    Jerome Powers
    May 18–June 24

    Margaret Thatcher, 511 W 25th, 212-675-0222

    We all know what happens to horses that get carted off to the glue factory. Well, like a chicken omelet, Powers takes horse hair and places it—sometimes in straight lines, like a Barnett Newman "zip," other times in overlapping curves—between layers of poured Elmer's glue. The hair (or sometimes pencil lines) applied in the earlier layers gets blurrier beneath successive applications of the glue, lending the work an atmosphere reminiscent of bugs trapped in prehistoric amber.

    John Salvest
    May 18–June 24

    Morgan Lehman Gallery, 317 Tenth Ave, 212-268-6699

    Taking the Latin inscription "Omnia tibi felicia" ("May all things bring you happiness") as inspiration, Salvest makes art from humble materials: wine corks, rubber bands, stubby chalk remnants, and chewing gum. For this show, the gallery's courtyard will be filled with 247 red, white, and blue milk crates stacked in the shape of Old Glory. In the past, Salvest has spread plastic lids on the floor in the shape of a map of the U.S., so expect him to use all available surfaces for his clever aesthetics of detritus.

    'Sweet Taboos: A Mini Tirana Biennial in NYC'
    May 24–July 1

    Apexart, 291 Church, 212-431-5270

    Albania was once one of the Communist bloc's most repressive and backward members. After Communism collapsed across Eastern Europe, artists got some sense of what they'd been missing in the West. Last year's third incarnation of Tirana's Biennial allowed international artists to work on sites throughout that city for extended periods of time; a sampling of the results exploring "the taboos of contemporary society—what are they, what do they mean, how do they apply to the Albanian context, and how does one deal with them artistically"—is crossing the ocean for the edification of us jaded New Yorkers.

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