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Hans Ulrich Obrist

Hans Ulrich Obrist Interested in Time, Hans Ulrich Obrist

by Paddy Johnson on March 16, 2018
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The line for last week’s keynote lecture at the Armory Show was as long as the speaker’s resume; slated to talk was Hans Ulrich Obrist, artistic director of the Serpentine Gallery and arguably the most famous curator in the world. But since Obrist is a fixture at large art fairs, the huge turnout was a surprise. Having watched a few of his interviews online, I worried that the talk would be a pretentious ramble. My fears weren’t entirely unfounded, though no one could accuse Obrist of lacking enthusiasm as he spent well over an hour discussing notions of time, the archive, unrealized projects, and the Serpentine’s recent shows. Central to all of this was his belief in the freedom to experiment.

But Obrist’s talk had limited success in getting attendees fired up, likely because of the curator’s consistent failure to fully elucidate his themes.

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I Went To The Jewish Museum’s “Take Me (I’m Yours)” And All I Got Was This Stupid T-Shirt

by Emily Colucci on December 7, 2016
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A loud, tacky sign emblazoned with “Everything Must Go” would not feel out of place in the Jewish Museum’s current exhibition Take Me (I’m Yours). A rack of plastic goodie bags branded with the exhibition’s title hang in the show’s entrance, encouraging viewers to fill up on artist-made pins, T-shirts, used clothing, candy and a 25-cent ball of air from Yoko Ono. With this free-for-all curatorial style, the exhibit looks more like a display of samples than a contemporary art show.

That’s a bad thing. The whole show feels like a gimmick designed to lure people in the door by offering them free swag. Meanwhile, the Museum is presenting the idea that they are challenging the traditional relationship between art and its viewers, which not only isn’t true (it’s been done to death), it distracts from the sociopolitical critiques made by many of the artists in the show. Simply put, the show is a disaster.

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Monday Links: Tough Times for Tumblr

by Rhett Jones on July 25, 2016


  • Tumblr artists take note. Verizon is set to buy Yahoo, Tumblr’s parent company, for the bargain basement price of $4 billion. Changes are expected and no service is safe, so make sure to back up any artwork. [The Verge]
  • Hans Ulrich-Obrist’s latest project has reportedly run into trouble. The Shanghai Project, a multi-disciplinary biennial that Obrist was organizing with Yongwoo Lee has been reimagined as a community-based event rather than art exhibition. Reports of scheduling, funding, staffing and bureaucratic difficulties have plagued the project for months. [The Art Newspaper]
  • The New Yorker takes a dive into the mysterious circumstances surrounding the archives of the conceptual architect Luis Barragán. Following his death in 1988, the archives were sold and have been held in a Swiss bunker ever since. [New Yorker]
  • The net artist Guthrie Lonergan has installed a new work on the Hammer Museum’s website and it has made visitors baffled, delighted and angry. The museum has put together some messages they’ve received over the last six weeks along with an interview with Guthrie about the work. [Hammer Museum]
  • Edward Snowden has collaborated with hardware hacker Andrew “Bunnie” Huang to design a cell-phone case for journalists and other people who may be tracked by malicious forces. It’s not the prettiest thing in the world but it’s far better than Snowden’s music video. [Fast Company]
  • Have to say that this James Turrell takeover of a memorial church in Berlin is great. It’s like the nightmare funeral scenes in Heathers made sublime. [The Creator’s Project]
  • U.S. Congressman John Lewis has won the prestigious Eisner award for the second volume of his graphic novel memoir, “March.” Done in collaboration with illustrator Nate Powell and co-writer Andrew Aydin, the series chronicles Lewis time in the American civil rights struggle. [The Guardian]
  • Bushwick will be a major pain in the ass in a few years. MTA officials have voted to shut down the L train for 18 months straight. The scheduled maintenance won’t begin until 2019 but this can’t possibly be good for local businesses or galleries. [DNAinfo]
  • Alanna Heiss recently gave a shout out to Laurie Anderson’s criticism from the early 1970’s, so ArtNews decided to collect some capsule reviews that Anderson wrote for them. Capsule reviews are a tough format and Anderson mostly sticks to a style of quick impressionistic description that’s light on opinion. [ArtNews]
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This Week’s Must-See Art Events: Mexico City Edition

by Paddy Johnson and Michael Anthony Farley on February 1, 2016
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¡Estamos en México D.F.!

We’re here for the art fairs ZONA MACO and Material, but there’s literally so much going on in this city of 20+ million people that it’s only Monday and we’re overwhelmed. There’s no shortage of art events. We’ve done our best to collect some of the shows we think should be on your must-see list, ranging from heady shows such as that of artists Virginia Colwell and Emre Hüner at Iniciativa Curatorial MARSO to the fusion of more minimal and playful aesthetics by José León Cerrillo at josé garcía. If you think there’s anything we should add to our list let us know. And look to the blog tomorrow for our Mexico City Weekend Guide. There’s literally so much worthy of your attention here we had to split our post in two!

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5 Takeaways From Yesterday’s “Instagram as an Artistic Medium” Talk

by Corinna Kirsch on December 5, 2014
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1. You have different types of artists.

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Hans Ulrich Obrist, the Champion of Art Consumption

by Whitney Kimball on December 2, 2014
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This week, the New Yorker published a 10,000 word resumé spilling even more verbiage about Obrist’s curatorial style of vacuuming information and returning marathonic shows in an on-the-go 24-hour art viewing lifestyle.

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Hans-Ulrich Obrist’s New Do It Video Tells You to Do It With Social Media

by Corinna Kirsch on April 29, 2014
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But why should we do it?

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