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Issue 128

Looking Forward 2010

frieze asked 13 critics and curators from around the world to choose what they’re looking forward to in 2010

in Critic's Guides | 01 JAN 10

Katrina Brown
I look forward to seeing how Kathrin Rhomberg deals with the 6th Berlin Biennial after her strong programmes as curator and exhibition organizer at Secession, Vienna, from 1990 to 2001, and as Director of the Kölnische Kunstverein (Cologne Art Association, 2002–7); and also how the ‘Play Van Abbe’ project around its redoubtable collection unfurls in the Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven. 

Lauri Firstenberg
A major solo exhibition of Tijuana/San Diego-based artist Marcos Ramírez ‘Erre’ will open in Mexico City in August at the Museo de Arte Carrillo Gil. After the pandemonium surrounding the cancellation of his survey show at the new contemporary art space El Cubo, Tijuana, in protest at a messy political transition of leadership and alteration in the programming of the space, this belated exhibition represents two decades of work. Part of a new commissions series at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco is a forthcoming project with Los Angeles-based artists Marco Rios and Kara Tanaka. Erika Vogt’s solo exhibition ‘Geometric Persecution’ will open at the Room Gallery, University of California, Irvine, and LA-based artist Vishal Jugdeo’s forthcoming exhibition ‘Thought Composition with Model of the World’ at San Francisco’s Queens Nails Projects.   

Marcos Ramírez 'Erre', Toy Horse, 1997. Courtesy: inSite, San Diego and the artist

Susanne Gaensheimer
‘Paul Gauguin’ at London’s Tate Modern promises to be a remarkable exhibition. Hopefully, the slight contextual displacement will highlight the permanent collection in exciting new ways. To see contemporary works in the light of Gauguin’s oeuvre could reveal an array of possible readings. Another promising exhibition is ‘Through the Forest’, a presentation of works by Rodney Graham at the Museum für Gegenwartskunst, Basel (in collaboration with MACBA, Barcelona, and Kunsthalle Hamburg). The show will include a selection of the artist’s diverse body of work, with a special focus on his writings and books. Shows by Monica Bonvicini and Matias Faldbakken at Kunsthalle Fridericianum, Kassel, should be a strong continuation of the institution’s presentation of parallel solo exhibitions, given the artists’ similar interests in identity politics and stylized pop culture. 

In 2008, the Bienal de São Paulo challenged the format it helped disseminate; as a consequence, expectations for the 29th edition are high - Adriano Pedrosa

Margot Heller
This year is full of Latin American promise. For his mid-career survey, Gabriel Orozco will work with a different curator at three different institutions (Museum of Modern Art, New York; Kunstmuseum Basel; and Centre Pompidou, Paris); the exhibition will evolve each time it is shown. Brazilian artist Rivane Neuenschwander’s solo show at the New Museum in New York will offer a welcome opportunity to see a significant presentation of her work from the past 15 years; and the prospect of the 29th Bienal de São Paulo, curated by Moacir dos Anjos, is enticing. Closer to home, in the UK, I look forward to seeing the development of Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art, Gateshead, under the new directorship of Godfrey Worsdale working with recently appointed Chief Curator, Laurence Sillars. 

Gabriel Orozco, Atomists: Making Strides, 1996. Courtesy: Marian Goodman Gallery, New York

Caoimhín Mac Giolla Léith
Having missed its US début at CCS Bard, I look forward to seeing Rachel Harrison’s ‘Consider the Lobster’ when it takes its place in the procession of solo shows by women currently being rolled out by Iwona Blazwick at London’s revamped Whitechapel Gallery. As I’ll also happen to miss Gabriel Orozco’s retrospective at New York’s Museum of Modern Art by a few days, I’ll be glad of the opportunity to see its incarnations at either the Kunstmuseum Basel or at the Centre Pompidou, Paris. When I do finally make it to the USA in spring, it will be interesting to see if and how the vicissitudes of recent history are reflected in this year’s Whitney Biennial and ‘Greater New York 2010’ at P.S.1. Contemporary Art Center. 

Elizabeth Ann Macgregor 
The 6th Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art in Brisbane, at the Gallery of Modern Art and Queensland Art Gallery, runs until April. More than 100 artists from 25 countries, including collaborations and collectives, reflect the diversity of art practice across Asia, the Pacific and Australia. At the National Gallery of Victoria in Melbourne, Ricky Swallow’s exhibition runs until the end of February. In May, the 17th Biennale of Sydney opens at venues across the city, including Cockatoo Island, an evocative harbour island with strong remnants of its industrial and colonial past. The show by the 2010 artistic director, David Elliott, ‘The Beauty of Distance: Songs of Survival in a Precarious Age’, promises to be thought-provoking and provocative; it will explore the affirmative power of art in the face of unprecedented threats. Its several themes will include ‘First Peoples and Fourth Worlds’ and ‘From the Panopticon to the Wunderkammer’. In November, the Kaspar König-initiated exhibition of Aboriginal painting, ‘Remembering Forward Australia’, which includes the work of Emily Kame Kngwarreye and Paddy Bedford, opens at the Museum Ludwig, Cologne. 

Bob Nickas
Anne Collier at Anton Kern, New York, and the Paul Thek retrospective at the Whitney Museum, New York. 

Solveig Øvstebø
I’m looking forward to the 6th Berlin Biennial. Historically, the show has explored the possibilities of the biennial format in each new version, and I’m keen to see what curator Kathrin Rhomberg will do. More generally, I’m curious how and if the financial crisis will continue to affect art production in the years ahead. In 2009, I noticed a move towards edgier, more daring presentations in commercial galleries than usual. I also wonder whether we’ll see a continuation of what I perceive as a redefinition of the role of institutions on the art scene. Recently, there has been a tendency towards self-reflection among institutions and a heightened awareness of their function. This has been visible both in large-scale exhibitions and biennials and in the willingness of institutions to experiment with their own formats and models. 

Ricky Swallow, One nation underground, 2007. Copyright: Ricky Swallow; photography: National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne

Adriano Pedrosa
The Bienal de São Paulo recently went through an identity crisis and, in 2008, under Ivo Mesquita and Ana Paula Cohen, it took the opportunity to question its role in São Paulo, in Brazil and abroad, challenging the biennial format that it helped disseminate. As a consequence, expectations for the 29th Bienal are high; curated by Moacir dos Anjos and his team – which includes Fernando Alvim, Rina Carvajal, Agnaldo Farias, Yuko Hasegawa, Sara Maharaj and Chus Martínez – it will open in September. 

Alessandro Rabottini
I’m looking forward to Elad Lassry’s show at Kunsthalle Zürich: the incredible works by this LA-based artist are like magnets for my eyes. Upcoming retrospectives of work by seminal artists such as Tim Rollins and K.O.S (The Frye Art Museum, Seattle), Lynda Benglis (Le Consortium, Djion) and Jim Shaw (CAPC, Musée d’Art Contemporain, Bordeaux) all deserve to be fully acknowledged. The third annual Festival of Contemporary Art in Faenza – directed by Carlos Basualdo, Pier Luigi Sacco and Angela Vettese, and comprising three days of panels and lectures – promises to spark a much-needed moment of debate in Italy. Lastly, the recent spurt of development in contemporary art magazines and print projects in Italy is a phenomenon: in particular, keep an eye on Kaleidoscope, Mousse and Peep-Hole. 

James Rondeau
I’m excited about Sturtevant’s solo exhibition, which opens in February at the Musée d’Art moderne de la Ville de Paris. Curator Francesco Bonami makes smart, interesting group shows better than anyone. For this reason, I am looking forward to his Whitney Biennial more than I have looked forward to a biennial for some time. 

Alexis Vaillant
I’m looking forward to Simon Thompson’s Proposed Mural for Sick Children, based on a drawing he showed at Galerie Daniel Buchholz in Cologne last May; the surprises of Berlin’s project space, Silberkuppe; Stuttgart’s Hermes und der Pfau, and Mark von Schlegell’s explorations of a dystopian future. 

Paul Gauguin, Teba 'amana has many Parents, 1893. Copyright: Art Institute Chicago

Carol Yinghua Lu
‘Reshaping History, Chinart from 2000 to 2009’ is scheduled to open simultaneously in major museums in Beijing, Guangzhou and Shanghai in April and has stirred controversy with the claim of its title. According to art historian Lu Peng, the organizer of the project, its original title was to be ‘Making History’, but that was considered too close to ‘Making Worlds’, the title of the 53rd Venice Biennale, and subsequently abandoned. ‘Chinart’ was coined to refer to both Chinese art and to the new group of museums Lu helped initiate that are still under construction, which are part of a local tourist and economic promotion for Qingchengshan in Sichuan Province. The show will doubtlessly reflect Lu’s fast and loose approach to writing history; it will include nearly 1,000 works by 200 artists and will provide an inclusive check-list of Chinese art since the end of the Cultural Revolution in 1979 – as long as one bears in mind it’s just one angle and not the whole history.

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