Support Hyperallergic’s independent arts journalism.
Italian photographer Stefano Cerio has captured ski resorts at night, empty cruise ships, drained water parks, and, most recently, the uncanny bleakness of China’s off-season amusement parks and other constructed entertainment. Chinese Fun, out this month from Hatje Cantz, includes over 50 of his plate camera images.
People are absent in the photographs, which are draped in gray skies and smog. It’s easy sport for a Western photographer to go to a country like China with its recent building boom, and document its shoddy corners, but Cerio does have a good idea for some truly strange scenes. Clocks keep time on empty beaches; roller coasters stand vacant and serpentine alongside shiny new skyscrapers; a huge, concrete bowl of fruit bleached by the sun looms over a street; and fragments from global architecture are recreated in concrete, metal, and plastic — from the Colosseum to the Eiffel Tower. A fake piano in an empty field attracts couples for wedding photographs in spring and summer, yet in winter is adrift and otherworldly.
Walter Guadagnini, chair in history of contemporary art at the Academy of Fine Arts in Bologna, writes in an introduction: “It is the collapse of meaning, as well as of any possible identity, that opens the way, in the end, to a vision of the most accentuated surreal character.”
Some of Cerio’s photographs will be on view at Fondazione Volume! in Rome from September 23 to November 3. The photographer purposefully finds places that are not actually abandoned, even if they might appear post-apocalyptic. One exception is the inclusion of the Wonderland Amusement Park in Nankou, a Disneyland knockoff that was never completed and left to decay. It’s all rather bleak on the surface, but these are mostly places in hibernation, waiting for the crowds to return to give their absurdity a purpose.
Every utopia is a social experiment, the artist suggests in this commission for the Performa performance art biennial, and we’re ultimately the guinea pigs.
“You can’t live in a house that’s built upon your back.” This is one of the more memorable phrases spoken by the scripted lovers of Tschabalala Self’s Sounding Board, what Performa describes in its promotional materials as an “experimental play.” That phrase, uttered by one romantic partner to the other, operates as guidance, warning, dictate,…
Two K-12 art teachers will each receive a $1,000 cash gift and an additional $500 to put toward classroom art supplies. Nominations are due October 31.
A commitment to trans subjects, and their queer communities, is manifested as a holding environment made approachable by our concern, grounded in intimacy and legacy, enfolding any viewer who will stop, listen, and receive love.
Todd Chandler’s documentary Bulletproof looks at the many people monetizing the societal rot of school shootings.
In Philadelphia, a series of solo shows delves into the interdisciplinary practices of graduates whose work explores identity, familial bonds, political constructs, and nature’s fragility.
On November 14, join Columbia University School of the Arts for virtual information sessions with the program chair, faculty, and staff.
The artists released the risograph-printed booklet series Organizing Power to assist in the arduous process of assembling a bargaining unit and negotiating.
From 1963 through 1968, Warhol produced nearly 650 films, including hundreds of Screen Tests and dozens of full-length movies.
Melvin Edwards, Maren Hassinger, and Alison Saar are among the artists kicking off the Destination Crenshaw initiative.