Artforum

Review: Claire Fontaine, “May our enemies not prosper”

Galerie Neu, Berlin. Reflecting on complicity with the status quo and the necessary role of political art, the artist collective Claire Fontaine takes on the refugee crisis in Europe, economic exploitation, and environmental collapse for the current exhibition here. Symbolic gestures in painting and sculpture are presented as counterpoints to the general mood of resignation […]

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Modern Painters

Reviews In Brief: Berlin

Various Locations, Berlin. Steve Reinke Isabella Bortolozzi // March 15–April 9 With his postcard-size needlepoint works and found Polaroids of masturbating men, Reinke revisits the parallels between an artist’s “creative act” and la petite mort (“the little death”), or the moment of orgasm. Themes of self-exposure continue in two films that mix archival footage with video […]

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Modern Painters

Review: Christian Jankowski, “Retrospektive”

Contemporary Fine Arts, Berlin. In a perverted display of sincerity and vanity, prankster darling of the art world Jankowski invited German actress Nina Hoss to curate a midcareer retrospective of his work. This kitschy spectacle of hiring a famed performer as novice curator— although in line with his interest in role reversals, referenced within the exhibition by […]

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Artforum

Review: Erwin Wurm, “Bei Mutti”

Berlinische Galerie, Berlin. Erwin Wurm has a knack for finding eureka moments in the most mundane circumstances. Domestic objects as activated by everyday people define his current exhibition, bringing together three bodies of work ranging from the early 1990s—including printed instructions on paper outlining fattening recipes—to the present, with oversize bronze and polyester sculptures that […]

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Frieze

Critic’s Guide: Berlin

The pick of the shows opening this week as part of Berlin Gallery Weekend. Christopher Williams, Model-Nr.: 1740, Rotznasen – Kinder Model Agentur Liesegangstr. 7A, 40211 Düsseldorf, Studio Rhein Verlag, Düsseldorf, January 28, 2016, 2016, inkjet print on paper, 51 x 51 cm. Courtesy: Galerie Gisela Capitain, Cologne and Capitain Petzel, Berlin © the artist Christopher […]

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Artforum

Review: Bunny Rogers, “Columbine Cafeteria”

Société, Berlin. The number of school shootings in the US continues to rise unfettered. Sandy Hook, Virginia Tech, and Columbine High—sites of the most fatal of these killings over the last two decades—are emblazoned across the collective American consciousness. For every generation, another trauma tops the list. As a young child, Bunny Rogers was deeply […]

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Artforum

Review: Laura Lamiel, “L’Utopie Préserve Du Cynisme”

Silberkuppe, Berlin. Laura Lamiel’s variety of Minimalism is one of intimacy. With her sculptures and installations, she reduces structural forms to elemental traces. Figure, 2013, is a room framed by three sterile, white, enameled steel walls assembled in the center of the gallery’s first room and simply held in place by a scattering of C-clamps. […]

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Artforum

Review: Karl Haendel, “Unwinding Unboxing, Unbeding Uncocking”

Wentrup Gallery, Berlin. Karl Haendel’s exhibition posits the practice of yoga as an alternative to accelerationism. Citing the anxiety around self-optimization, Haendel presents lifestyle- and body-enhancement products marketed to reinforce the need for self-betterment to question the ways these objects aid or inhibit our sense of self-worth and identity. A maze of built-in walls—each painted […]

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Artforum

Review: Melike Kara, “In Your Presence”

Peres Projects, Berlin. Painting is a lonely activity—no two ways about it. But if the canvas could talk, would you want it to be your friend? Cologne-based painter and sculptor Melike Kara fills this gallery with coquettish figure drawings of gender-fluid imaginary friends, toying with the implicit sexuality of nature and human communication for her […]

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