With his recent works, Mangold underscores a consciousness of mortality that he meets with a gracefulness that is breathtaking.
When an exhibition is as puzzling as this one, it’s useful to step aside and reflect.
For Mangold, more than any other artist of his generation, painting is contingent, rather than self-sufficient. It is part of an active relationship.
So where were they? An Inside Art column published in The New York Times a week before the opening of Art Basel Miami Beach dangled the prospect of a more inclusive fair this year, one that would feature “A Focus on Female Artists,” as the headline put it.
Before writing about Sylvia Plimack Mangold’s shift from interiors to landscapes, I think it is useful to once again consider the floor paintings, which she worked on for about a decade, beginning in 1967. It is in these paintings that the artist defines an approach to subject matter from which she has never wavered. She will paint only what she observes, but with more rigorous parameters than simply investigating her immediate circumstances. Her subject matter will never suggest an elsewhere or material plenitude. She will make no allusions to fantasy, leisure, or social status. It is incumbent on us to reflect upon what she does and doesn’t do.
In 2011, the American Dream has deteriorated to looking like an empty office space with abandoned cubicles, lone water fountains and abandoned family photographs of the past employees. On two floors of the midtown Manhattan Lipstick Building, and only an elevator ride away from Bernie Madoff’s old office, a group of artists transformed an empty office into an art exhibition, 14 & 15, by placing conceptual art around the lavish office, playfully moving objects that had been left in the offices and changing how viewers understand office space. However, much like the current economic state with the gap between the wealthy top 1% and everyone else, only the select few seem to be able to experience this exhibition.