Post image for Bathing In The Purple Rain At Sam McKinniss’ “Egyptian Violet”

Some exhibitions raise more questions than they answer. Take Sam McKinniss’ current show Egyptian Violet at team (gallery, inc.), which presents a sense of unease and potential for violence in his fan boy paintings of celebrities and movie characters. The subject matter is thoughtfully curated and carefully painted and yet, it is still difficult to pin down McKinniss’ exact critique. Is it a general representation of our anxiety-ridden era in 2016? A statement, à la A.L. Steiner’s 30 Days of Mo:)rning, about how everything is going wrong at once? A critique of the vacuity of pop culture? A death obsession? Or is there no real social critique at all? I left the show with no clear answer.

Post image for Julie Mehretu at Marian Goodman Gallery: Can Social Abstraction Succeed?

How valuable are first impressions? In art, this seems to be a perennially important question. A work should, aesthetically, stand on its own. Except, of course, when it doesn’t matter because the concept determines the formal choices.  Or when aesthetics kinda sorta matter but so does the context.

Post image for Greetings from Little Haiti: The Common Field Convening Starts Tonight

I’m in Miami for the Common Field Convening, where I’ll be both speaking on a panel and posting updates to the blog all weekend long. When I tell people this, the first question I get is almost always “What is Common Field?”
Short Answer: Common Field is great.

Post image for No Links: On The Donald Trump of Art World Social Media

Artists Leah Dixon and Lauren Christiansen are taking issue with Jerry Saltz’s Instagram feed because they think he’s too interested in vaginas. They’ve titled their social media post, “The Donald Trump of Art World Social Media” and have dedicated themselves to ranting about Saltz’s obsessions. [No link.] “It only takes thirty seconds on Saltz’s instagram to see how destructive and trivial his interests are.” they write. “How he is using his power to openly fetishize female bodies, in lieu of actually presenting valid cultural critique. Honestly, one out of every three of his posts is a vagina.”