Joseph Nechvatal

Post image for Jean Tinguely’s Clanging, Banging Machine Sculptures

PARIS — The crepuscular imbroglio at work in Jean Tinguely’s historic machine sculptures, currently on view at Galerie Georges-Philippe et Nathalie Vallois, is very much of the present moment.

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Post image for Tracking the Beat Generation Across Three Continents

PARIS — Though almost entirely lacking a female presence — artist Jay DeFeo and poet Diane Di Prima being the exceptions that prove the rule — the Centre Pompidou’s airily laid out retrospective of the Beat Generation is otherwise flawless.

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Post image for How Daniel Buren’s Institutional Critique Became Institutional Chic

PARIS — Lacking any discernible content outside of context, the translucent, cheery façade of Daniel Buren’s “Observatory of Light” (2016) at the Foundation Louis Vuitton is another example of how once-radical conceptual artists have become co-opted and turned into spiffy designer-decorators.

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Post image for Ugo Rondinone’s Fragments of Nature Mourn the Environment

NÎMES, France — Ugo Rondinone’s zombie nature show Becoming Soil is an unintentional reminder that the terrifying Anthropocene age — when the human influence on Earth’s soil has been so profound it will leave its destructive legacy for millennia — is upon us.

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Post image for An Exhibition Recaps 50 Years of James Bond, the Spy Who Loved Himself

PARIS — James Bond, 007 the Exhibition provides just enough ludicrous, louche swagger to fill hard-living, hard-killing art stars with envy.

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Post image for The Pulsing Patterns of Traditional North African Jewelry

PARIS — Wearable Treasures: Maghreb Jewelry and Ornaments is a pointed consideration of the psychic powers interlaced throughout North African women’s jewelry.

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Post image for A Velvet Underground Extravaganza Where Images Drown Out the Music

PARIS — Arty, esoteric, noise music may not be for everyone, but the Velvet Underground arose from just such obscure subgenre territory.

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Post image for A Chronicler of Experimental Music Releases His Own

PARIS — While in New York some years ago, I virtually met Laurent Fairon, a French blogger and record collector based in Paris, when he was documenting and archiving for the web the Tellus Audio Cassette Magazine in partnership with UbuWeb.

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Post image for The Tender Playfulness of Paul Klee

PARIS — The key to Paul Klee’s wonderfully shaped energy is not ironic detachment, as the title of the Centre Pompidou’s current retrospective suggests, but rather the playful and idyllic emotion he transmits through masterly line and dusty color.

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Post image for Artist Duo TOILETPAPER’s Kitschy Department Store Wipeout

PARIS — Jaded neo-pop (one is tempted to say “poop” here) is on view in the Galeries Lafayette’s très kitsch exhibition TP–RAMA, the latest from art-commerce duo of Maurizio Cattelan and Pierpaolo Ferrari, aka TOILETPAPER.

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