Post image for From Botswana with Love*: The Gaze in Meleko Mokgosi’s Marxist Oil Paintings

Meleko Mokgosi’s two exhibitions at Jack Shainman are a politically-charged invitation to spectatorship in oil on canvas. Gorgeously rendered scenes from southern Africa invite the viewer to consider colonialism, class, and domestic life from a Marxist, yet utterly subjective viewpoint.

Post image for I Want To Believe At Paulina Peavy’s “The Artist Behind The Mask”

It’s not everyday you get to see collaborations between UFOs and artists in a Lower East Side gallery setting. But, Paulina Peavy’s The Artist Behind The Mask at Andrew Edlin Gallery is exactly that.

Andrew Edlin hosts Peavy’s show in their back gallery—which I guess is where you’d expect to find an alien-artist collaboration—devoting their much bigger space to the more well-known Susan Te Kahurangi King’s pop culture-infused drawings. The Artist Behind The Mask isn’t your typical show stopper. In fact, at first glance, the exhibition even looks a bit boring. Seven framed mixed media drawings hang on the wall, along with a few jewel and fabric-covered masks. It doesn’t exactly scream made-by aliens.

Post image for An Interview with Eric Mistretta: When to Panic

Visiting Eric Mistretta’s current show, “Bad Doctor,” at Anna Kustera (on through October 2nd), feels a lot like walking into the mind of a mad pop culture meta-physician. He’s turned the gallery into a glowing ultramarine chamber complete with glowing violet crystals and a pentagram painted on the floor. At first glance, the show looks like it’s a celebration of New Age beliefs and all the accouterments that go along with the lifestyle.

A longer look at some of those accouterments creates a more macabre interpretation . “Healing” crystal book ends flank volumes of “When to Panic,” self help books. Seemingly pleasant, yet ominous paintings, give one the sense that all this magic isn’t intended to save the viewer from more malevolent forces at play.

I sat down with Mistretta to discuss superstition, human foibles, the saving graces of humor. We even looked at the importance of belief and the way we construct meaning in everyday life.

Post image for Deadline Reminder: Submit to We Are SO Not Getting the Security Deposit Back; a Guide to Defunct Artist-Run Spaces

Reminder: the deadline for submissions to We Are SO Not Getting the Security Deposit Back; a Guide to Defunct Artist-Run Spaces is this Saturday, October 1st. So send the completed questionnaire at the bottom of the page, along with any photos of your space you’d like to see reproduced in glorious zine format to submissions@artfcity.com