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Anyone who attended high school in the Western world during the last few decades knows what Goth culture is. The one-room contemporary Flemish show in Andrea Rosen’s Gallery2 space, Flemish Masters, That’s Life, instantly transported me back to high school and my run-ins with the weirdly morose tribe of Siouxsie and the Banshees fans, who loved all things black, medieval and Renaissance — I wasn’t yet sophisticated enough to realize that they weren’t the same thing.
Curated by Filiep Libeert, this cluttered — but beautifully arranged — exhibition brings together eight artists born in Flanders, a region of modern-day Belgium little known to the outside world. In the history of art, the label “Flemish” unusually conjures up a number of 15th to 17th century Old Masters, including Jan Van Eyck, Pieter Bruegel, Anthony Van Dyck, Peter Paul Rubens, and my personal favorite, Jacob Jordeans. These artists have little stylistically in common but during their day they were at the forefront of visual experimentation.
What the contemporary Flemish artists in Flemish Masters share with older artists seems to be very little, but what they share with Goth culture is profound, including a fascination with mortality, an interest in updating older styles, and a love of pretty decay and cursive script.
Walking into the gallery you are immediately confronted by Kris Martin’s large mirrored piece covered with a backward “The End” written across like we are standing behind the mirror — reality is on the other side, get it.
Jan Van Oost’s mirrored coffin, “Untitled” (1987-88), is the earliest dated piece on display and seems like a joke on the notion that we are all the walking dead, or maybe minimalism is dead, or wait, maybe it’s a prototype for Marilyn Manson’s (remember him?) dressing room mirror. Then there’s Peter Buggenhout’s “The Blind Leading the Blind” (2010) which looks like a remake of mid-century sculpture but this time with polyurethane, epoxy, foam and other artificial materials, all covered with dust (cue Siouxsie and the Banshees’s “Cities in Dust“).
The stand out on display is Wim Delvoye’s “Double Heli Crossed Crucifix” (2009), which collides faith and science into a distorted mindfuck of sculptural fabulosity. If it ain’t baroque don’t fix it.
If I sound terse about this jewel box of a show it’s only because of the extreme stylization of the work on view in Flemish Masters. Life, like art, suffers a little when it’s overwhelmed by style. Then again, Goth is dead (pun intended).
Flemish Masters, That’s Life is curated by Filiep Libeert and continues until March 5, 2011 at the Andrea Rosen Gallery (525 West 24th Street, Chelsea, Manhattan)
Editor’s Note: Homepage photo via andrearosengallery.com
“Black infants in America are now more than twice as likely to die as white infants—11.3 per 1,000 black babies, compared with 4.9 per 1,000 white babies, according to the most recent government data—a racial disparity that is actually wider than in 1850, 15 years before the end of slavery, when most black women were…
In 1850, when Dr. Robert W. Gibbes commissioned J. T. Zealy to make daguerreotypes of persons held in slavery in and around Columbia, South Carolina, for Harvard Professor Louis Agassiz to use in support of his theory that African people were a separate species, daguerreotypes were at the height of fashion.
Works by Rodolfo Abularach, Mario Bencomo, Denise Carvalho, Pérez Celis, Entes, and Agustín Fernandéz are on view at the NYC gallery through January 7, 2022.
he ownership of images has a long and nuanced legal history, which has evolved dramatically in recent years as cultural standards and photographic technologies have rapidly advanced
Renty and his daughter Delia. Renty was an enslaved African, kidnapped from the Congo, sold and forced into slave labor on the South Carolina plantation of B.F. Taylor
“Ecosystem X,” an art-based reimagining of life on planet Earth, is the theme of this open call. 10 artists will win $5,000 and one student will receive $5,000 as a scholarship/stipend.
The show, which honors the 50th anniversary of an exhibition history once ignored, continues a series of projects documenting Wilmington’s contemporary art scene.
As a scholar of African American history and photography whose work has focused on the status of violent images in museums and archives, I fully support the validity of Ms. Tamara Lanier’s claim and the amicus brief.
The daguerreotypes of Renty Taylor, Delia, Drana, Alfred, Jack, George Fassena, and Jem remained in an unused storage cabinet until 1975, when it was discovered by an employee of the Peabody Museum.
I am writing in support of the amicus curiae brief submitted by Professor Ariella Aïsha Azoulay of Brown University for the full restitution of the daguerreotypes of Renty Taylor and his daughter Delia, currently held by Harvard University, to their familial descendant, Tamara Lanier.