Saturday, January 19, 2008

If Ian Jehle and Linda Hesh's 15 for Philip over at Curator’s Office proves anything, it’s that the D.C. art scene is finally developing both some self-awareness and a sense of humor. Both are overdue.

Mind you, I like self-critical impulses in art—not exercises in navel-gazing, but pieces that map both their own workings and limits and those of their immediate context with the hope of somehow exceeding them.

Whether the Barlow show really shines a bit of light on D.C. art’s personalities and market dynamics or is just a love letter from a social scene to itself is debatable. Jessica Dawson weighs in at the WaPo; Kriston chooses instead to mull over panda-related Barlow controversies, old and new, at the CP.

Me, I thoroughly enjoyed the show, even if it occasionally had the vibe of a college humor mag—alternating between cool and dorky, funny and dumb, and relentlessly inside-y overall.

Feel free to take that assessment with a grain of salt. I’m tangled up in the fates of a number of the folks in the show now, thanks to my new job. Specifically, I’m working with Phil on an exhibition at the AAC…which includes art by Kathryn Cornelius…and paintings on loan from Andrea Pollan. So much for impartiality.

This is exactly why I don’t write about galleries anymore for the CP—although if I believed what Christian Viveros-Faune over at the Village Voice said to Tyler in his interview this past week, maybe I’d ask for my old job back. You know, embracing conflict over academia and all that.


Post a Comment

<< Home