Metacinematic installations of Pasolini films and über-ornamental inquiries by Anton Würth are but a couple of the items of note in this new round of art picks from our goodly glossy.
PIER PAOLO PASOLINI
MoMA PS1 and various other locations around the city, through January 5th
Italy has a long history of exporting polymaths of cultural products, and MoMA has now marshaled screening rooms, roundtables, exhibition spaces and catalogue pages to showcase the extensive and varied output of one of our very favorite such figures, Pier Paolo Pasolini. Since his films are likely the greatest source of his global repute, a full retrospective of remastered reels is a big part of the program, but so are meta-cinematic installations of Salò, Teorema and Medea, at PS1—complete with a display of publicity posters and other items of filmic marginalia—and an amassing of over 40 of the director's paintings and drawings, including a number of portraits of collaborators and peers, at Location 1. Check MoMA's website for more details. There's a lot to see, and it's all over the place in a most wonderful way. Did you know Pasolini was also a composer, for instance? That hat, too, is in the mix.
DAS ORNAMENT: ANTON WÜRTH
Pocket Utopia, 191 Henry St., through December 16th
Now nestled rather jewelry-box-like into Pocket Utopia's intimate space is a suite of masterfully executed engravings by Anton Würth, a German artist whose international trail of exhibitions and collections makes this gathering of exquisite work all the more precious. Taking cues from the long tradition of ornamentation design in faux-frame engraving practices, for instance, Würth revisits certain details in established forms to then recast them as individually fresh, to imbue them with new autonomy—and not without occasional overtones of wit and whimsy. To be sure, Würth's works, particularly a specific set piece at your right upon entry, embody quite well the German word ausgezeichnet. Consider asking how or why.
DO SOMETHING (ELSE) TO IT
Freight+Volume, 530 West 24th St. through January 5th
The three artists in this show, each working among various modes and materials in individually transformative manners, have appropriated the latter portion of Jasper Johns' famed creative self-directive—i.e. "Take something. Do something to it. Do something else to it. Now do something else to it."—as an exhibitional modus operandi in the mounting of paintings, videos and sculptural works in Freight+Volume's post-Sandy refurbished gallery space. Don Edler, George Jenne and Andrew Smenos are the artistic agents here, and their collective aims of inquiry include process, narrative, memory and several other so-called 'stereotyped' matters of creative dialogues. Their press release also mentions divining rods, toys and close shaves—for 'doings of somethings to somethings' can lead to talking about all kinds of things.
Sikkema Jenkins & Co., 530 West 22nd St., through December 22nd
The subject of a recent mid-career survey show that traveled to a number of different cities without ever alighting, much to our chagrin, upon New York, this Los Angeles-based artist is known primarily for his large canvases that ripple and rupture in erosive layers of mixed media, collage and décollage. While subtractive processes and variable abrasion characterize the compositional thrust and complicated surfaces of his works, Bradford's compositions can also be effulgently vibrant, intermittently painterly and thoroughly—with great consistency—absorbing. What's more, at times they seem to operate somewhere outside their two apparent dimensions. Get a feel for his oeuvre while it's in town this time around.
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