Buhmann on Art, Week of June 5, 2014

An installation view of Liu Chang’s “Love Story.” At Salon 94 Freemans, through June 21.  Courtesy of the artist and Salon 94, New York

An installation view of Liu Chang’s “Love Story.” At Salon 94 Freemans, through June 21. Courtesy of the artist and Salon 94, New York

BY STEPHANIE BUHMANN (stephaniebuhmann.com)    |  LIU CHANG: “LOVE STORY”  |  The first U.S. solo exhibition of the conceptual Chinese artist reflects on the social, economic, and political realities of contemporary China. Chang’s practice is rooted in quiet interventions and he often gathers personal details of others. This installation presents 500 used pulp fiction novels that were rented or borrowed by migrant workers in boomtown Shenzen. These “Love Stories,” which now mark some of the most popular romantic fiction of proletariat China, were illegal during the Cultural Revolution.

Rarely translated into other languages, they are primarily consumed by female teenagers, students, and young workers. What makes this project noteworthy is the large selection of anonymous notes that Chang found between the books’ pages. Culled, translated and painted onto the gallery walls, the notes of the readers tensely shift from the very personal to the public context.

Through June 21, at Salon 94 Freemans (1 Freeman Alley, btw. Bowery & Chrystie Sts.). Hours: Wed. – Sat., 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. Call  212-529-7400 or visit salon94.com.

Larry Clark’s “Johnny Bridges, 1961.” (Print: 2014 | Black and white photograph, from an edition of 3 and 1 artist’s proof | 20 X 16 inches; 50.8 X 40.64 cm).  © Larry Clark; Courtesy of the artist and Luhring Augustine, New York.

Larry Clark’s “Johnny Bridges, 1961.” (Print: 2014 | Black and white photograph, from an edition of 3 and 1 artist’s proof | 20 X 16 inches; 50.8 X 40.64 cm). © Larry Clark; Courtesy of the artist and Luhring Augustine, New York.

LARRY CLARK: “they thought i were but i aren’t anymore…”  |  Known primarily for his significant photographic and filmic works, Clark has recently expanded his creative production to the mediums of sculpture and painting. This exhibition serves as a significant survey of his oeuvre, featuring works from 1961 to the present. His earliest portrait of his friend Johnny Bridges, made with a Rolleiflex camera borrowed from his mother, is as much part of this tour de force as later paintings.

Larry Clark’s “Knoxville (homage to Brad Renfro).” (2011 | Color photographs on board | 42 X 86 inches; 106.68 X 218.44 cm).   © Larry Clark; Courtesy of the artist and Luhring Augustine, New York.

Larry Clark’s “Knoxville (homage to Brad Renfro).” (2011 | Color photographs on board | 42 X 86 inches; 106.68 X 218.44 cm). © Larry Clark; Courtesy of the artist and Luhring Augustine, New York.

As a fervent collector, Clark sources inspiration from a large collection of snapshots and printed material. His main interest has been, and remains, kids on the brink of becoming men and women, capturing some of the beautiful, painful, productive and destructive aspects involved in this transition.

June 7 – Aug. 1, at Luhring Augustine (531 W. 24th St., btw. 10th & 11th Aves.). Hours: Tues. – Sat., 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. After July 4: Mon. – Fri., 10 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. For more info, call 212-206-9100 or visit luhringaugustine.com.

Anonymous notes found among pulp fiction novels give voice to the migrant workers of Shenzen, in Liu Chang’s “Love Story.” At Salon 94 Freemans, through June 21.  Courtesy of the artist and Salon 94, New York

Anonymous notes found among pulp fiction novels give voice to the migrant workers of Shenzen, in Liu Chang’s “Love Story.” At Salon 94 Freemans, through June 21. Courtesy of the artist and Salon 94, New York

SYBIL GIBSON: “ART FROM WITHIN”  |  Considered one of the leading female folk artists from Alabama, the late Sybil Gibson (1908-1995) is best known for her naive portraits, gentle landscapes, and colorful floral arrangements. Though having enjoyed a prosperous upbringing as the daughter of a wealthy coal mine operator and farm owner, Gibson spent most of her adult life in poverty.

An installation view of Sybil Gibson’s “Art From Within.” At Woodward Gallery, through June 21.   Courtesy of Woodward Gallery,  NYC and the Estate of Sybil Gibson

An installation view of Sybil Gibson’s “Art From Within.” At Woodward Gallery, through June 21.
Courtesy of Woodward Gallery,
NYC and the Estate of Sybil Gibson

Employing watercolor, gouache and tempera on brown bags, scraps of paper, newsprint, and cardboard, Gibson found most of her subjects in childhood memories. What seems idyllic in paint marked a harsh reality for the artist. Over time, she grew out of touch from family and friends, finding art to be her sole escape from everyday hardships.

Sybil Gibson: “Portrait Blue Dress” (1993 | Acrylic on banner paper | Paper size: 20 x 18 inches; 50.8 x 45.7 cm | Frame size: 23.25 x 19.5 inches; 58.4 x 49.5 cm).  Courtesy of Woodward Gallery,  NYC and the Estate of Sybil Gibson

Sybil Gibson: “Portrait Blue Dress” (1993 | Acrylic on banner paper | Paper size: 20 x 18 inches; 50.8 x 45.7 cm | Frame size: 23.25 x 19.5 inches; 58.4 x 49.5 cm). Courtesy of Woodward Gallery,
NYC and the Estate of Sybil Gibson

Through June 21, at Woodward Gallery (133 Eldridge St., btw. Broome & Delancey Sts.). Hours: Tues. – Sat., 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. & Sun., 12 – 5 p.m. (also by appointment). Call 212-966-3411 or visit woodwardgallerynet.

JOE FLEMING:   “SUCKERPUNCH”  |  Fleming’s first New York solo show features a selection of paintings that employ an array of recycled materials. Enamel and spray foam are among the favored ingredients here and aid in generating an overall raw energy. The better-known Anselm Reyle comes to mind, but Fleming keeps his shapes more distinctly graphic. He embraces geometry in his forms, which are contrasted with brushy gestural backgrounds.

An installation view of Joe Fleming’s “Suckerpunch.” At Mike Weiss Gallery, through June 14.  Courtesy of the artist and Mike Weiss Gallery

An installation view of Joe Fleming’s “Suckerpunch.” At Mike Weiss Gallery, through June 14. Courtesy of the artist and Mike Weiss Gallery

Many of Fleming’s paintings are built up and heavily textured, suggesting that Fleming has a keen interest in sculptural qualities. By focusing on vivid variety, “Suckerpunch” translates as a dynamic and enthusiastic indulgence of color, form, and gesture.

Joe Fleming’s “The Flood #2” (2014 | Enamel, spray-foam, streetsign, metal, wood | 45x42x10in). On view at Mike Weiss Gallery, through June 14.  Courtesy of the artist and Mike Weiss Gallery

Joe Fleming’s “The Flood #2” (2014 | Enamel, spray-foam, streetsign, metal, wood | 45x42x10in). On view at Mike Weiss Gallery, through June 14. Courtesy of the artist and Mike Weiss Gallery

Through June 14, at Mike Weiss Gallery (520 W. 24th St., btw. 10th & 11th Aves.). Hours: Tues. – Sat., 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. Call 212-691-6899 or visit mikeweissgallery.com.

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