Armchair Traveler: From Venice to Berlin
Is the art world too global for you? Each month, Armchair Traveler highlights in pictures the shows you’d want to see—if you could jetset from one international hub to the next. This time, we’re off to Venice. Ciao.
Julien Nguyen: Pictures of the Floating World
Matthew Marks Gallery, New York
June 4 – August 13, 2021
Julien Nguyen’s first solo at Matthew Marks includes thirteen oil paintings made over the past three years. In precisely rendered tableaus he combines elements of art history, science fiction, and contemporary life. The exhibition highlights Nguyen’s recent emphasis on portraiture, with depictions of friends, lovers, and fellow artists painted from life. He uses the past as a lens through which to view, analyze, and reframe our present moment. While the scenes of his paintings are often attributable to biblical and classical references – St. John the Baptist (2020) is a reworking of Caravaggio’s John the Baptist – his subjects are distinctively of our time.
Hannah Wilke: Art for Life’s Sake
Pulitzer Arts Foundation, St. Louis
June 4, 2021 – January 16, 2022
American artist Hannah Wilke (1940–1993) created innovative and provocative art to affirm life. From the early 1960s onwards, Wilke explored representations of the body with frankness and intimacy. Through her work, she sought to make room for her vision of women in society, characterized by freedom and self-love. This exhibition is the first major presentation of Wilke’s work in over a decade. It spans the full arc of her practice in which she embraced the vitality, sensuality and vulnerability of the body.
Fondazione Prada, Venice
May 22 – November 21, 2021
Stop Painting is an exhibition conceived by the Swiss artist Peter Fischli. He identified five radical ruptures within the history of painting in the last 150 years caused by technological and social changes that marked artistic shifts through the rejection and reinvention of painting. The exhibition proves how in the last century many generations of artists declared that painting is coming to an end, and, by criticizing, often revitalized and reinvented it. Through a plurality of narratives, the exhibition brings together more than 110 artworks by over 80 artists in Prada’s Venice space including Lucio Fontana, Martin Kippenberger, Jana Euler, Francis Picabia, Sturtevant and Rosemarie Trockel.
June 18 – July 24, 2021
New York-based artist Trisha Baga is known for her innovative video, performance, and ceramic work that gleans the margins of the digital and the logic of online browsing to create dreamy, layered narratives in physical space. Her third solo at Société will be her first exhibition focused primarily on painting. The paintings will be presented in conversation with her new film 1620, which provided the inspiration and imagery for several works in the exhibition. According to Baga, the film is “an impressionistic science fiction, which reframes Plymouth Rock as a source of narrative stem cells in the hands of genetic scientists studying deep-seated flaws in The American Drama.”