Support Hyperallergic’s independent arts journalism.
For a gallery with 12 horses and a line of visitors stretching out the door, Gavin Brown’s enterprise is exceptionally hushed. The restaging of Jannis Kounellis‘s 1969 piece “Untitled (12 Horses)” opened Wednesday and is only on through Saturday as the West Village gallery’s final hurrah before relocating uptown to Harlem.
When I asked gallery owner Gavin Brown what he thought it meant to bring these live animals into the space as art, he said: “I don’t think it’s about anything.” He added that it’s “more through the coverage than the art” that the piece takes on a meaning more than what it is, saying that the press reactions were part of what drove the crowds lined outside the building.
The display of animals as art has sparked complaints that the horses tethered to the walls weren’t able to move freely. However, Robert Clemens, who was visiting the exhibition on Friday and has had 17 horses, noted that the setup wasn’t at all different from a horse stall where they wouldn’t be able to turn around, and the concrete floor covered with rubber for their hooves was likewise much like good horse accommodations. “There’s nothing out of the ordinary going on here,” he said. Joe Andoe, an artist who regularly paints horses, said he wasn’t surprised about the turnout for the rare close encounter with the animals in Manhattan, and that he’d “heard they were going out of their way to take good care of the horses.”
On entering, visitors are advised to keep their voices down and stay a distance from the animals, something which attendants were enforcing. The space is cool and still, and the horse’s sleek bodies of rippled muscle and smooth manes are illuminated by the skylights. Similar to the original 1969 staging of the Kounellis piece at Rome’s Galleria L’Attico, there’s a consideration of the art in the beauty of an animal like a horse, which artists have been drawn to since the Lascaux caves were painted. Yet there’s also something absurd about their calm presence in this white-walled gallery space.
“It’s so quiet,” Melanie Kress, a curatorial fellow at Friends of the High Line, remarked after seeing the horses. “Having fallen in love with that piece in art history class, it’s still stunning.”
Jannis Kounellis’s “Untitled (12 Horses)” continues at Gavin Brown’s enterprise (620 Greenwich Street, West Village, Manhattan) through June 27.
The art world has paid attention to other artists from the same era, but we have not done the same with Sonia Gechtoff, and it is time that we did.
Wifredo Lam developed a style that dances between figuration and abstraction, but the selected compositions at Pace gallery tend to repeat.
These multimedia works debuting on Voice include a “Death Mechanism” and allow fans to collect the artist’s origin story, told specifically for the metaverse.
These four artists dig into the cultural and geologic history of the enclave of Staten Island to produce work that resonates with the core of bell hooks’s commendation to love.
As acceptance of digital art grows, there is also a need to validate quality and recognize artists who explore radical ideas and achieve creative breakthroughs.
On December 13, learn about the Sam Fox School’s graduate programs in Visual Art and Illustration & Visual Culture, as well as the university’s competitive financial aid packages.
Anthology Film Archives’ complete retrospective of the influential Canadian experimental filmmaker includes many exceptionally rare titles.
Breuer’s Bohemia is centered around the life and work of Marcel Breuer, but touches upon an entire cohort of Modernist influencers.
Located in a historic industrial manufacturing facility in Utica, New York, this sculpture-centric program is accepting applications through January 15, 2022.
A conversation with Richard Kraft about his artist book in which he created penalty flags for nearly 10,000 of Trump’s misdeeds
The guidelines are specifically meant to combat a form of online harassment known as doxing.
Your list of must-see, fun, insightful, and very New York art events this month.