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Chairs, Tables and Sex

Frances Oliver As I begin to read a review* in my favourite magazine, The New York Review of Books, I am caught up short by the following: “… Gessen’s credentials as an observer of autocracy are impeccable. Aged fifty-three, they (Gessen identifies as binary) spent their childhood …” Who are they? Oh of course – binary – they is/are Gessen …

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Defund the Police, Refund the Arts

Viktor Witkowski I call the United States my home. Poland is my native land and Germany my homeland. In the current political situation in the U.S., where one political party has abdicated responsibility, I find myself looking to Europe for answers and possible solutions. In the USA the pandemic and its volatile virus have been declared Democrats by the administration …

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The Presence of Painting

by Steven Carrelli A year ago this month my wife Louise and I sat at the kitchen table of our friends Adam and Charlene Fung in Fort Worth, Texas, and we played a game called Pandemic. It is a cooperative game in which each player has a different specialty, and their task is to work together to stop a global …

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The Origins of Art

Anthony Viney Why is visual art produced by people and not normally by animals? (We know that elephants and chimpanzees can and do create interesting art in captivity but not, as far as we know, in the wild.) When did human beings start to create art, and what environmental, physical and neurological changes happened to allow us to do this? …

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Mix and Match

Margaret Richardson VA Made: ‘Mediation Across Media’ at the Branch Museum of Architecture and Design in Richmond, Virginia (July 17 – September 13, 2020) offers a unique opportunity to realize relationships between divergent media and expand one’s perspective of ‘things’. Co-organized by Howard Risatti and Steven Glass, this ambitious exhibition features works circa 1955-2019, from over 30 artists grouped into …

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Last of the Monster Roster

Margaret Lanterman Theodore (Ted) Halkin (1924-2020) Chicago artist, well-loved husband, father, professor, and friend, died on August 11, 2020 at the age of 96. Ted was associated with the 1950s group of Chicago artists known as the Monster Roster. Like many in this group, he was a WWII veteran and is also considered one of the progenitors of the Hairy …

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Against Racism, Against Sexism, Against Ageism

    In a local comic strip,  a child chastises his shamefaced father for never having done anything to change the name of Toronto’s Dundas street; the father didn’t even known that Dundas was a racist oppressor.  But then,  why pick on Dundas? In the 18th century all British aristocrats were racist oppressors.   As were Japanese aristocrats, and so were  …

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Once Upon an Outgoing Tide

Miklos Legrady Bruce Barber defined the notion of littoral as “the intermediate and shifting zone between the sea and the land”, which “characterizes works that are undertaken predominantly outside of the conventional contexts of the institutionalized art world.” One example was his project ‘Diddly Squat: Three Works about Money’, performed in Toronto in November 2002. I’ve made littoral works myself …

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The Bahnhof is an Installation in Itself

by Christian Hain Quite unexpectedly, a visitor’s first thought upon entering Katharina Grosse’s single–work show at Hamburger Bahnhof Museum might be: ‘Underwhelming’. That’s remarkable, because the German artist is known – and very well known, being represented by some of the best multinational powerhouse galleries – for ‘in your face’ artworks that are as powerful as they are colourful. You’d …

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