Monday, December 17, 2007

Having fun, but still complaining

Any new museum gets my applause, although I’m only now learning absolutes are impossible. Therefore, it’s only in the spirit of positive griping that I write about the New Museum building on the Lower East Side.

The building has received much critical praise, and much of it, for good reason. The space is spacious and somehow humble. But, no windows? No matter how high the ceilings, these galleries remain quintessential white cubes and feel claustrophobic. That said, I don’t like architecture to rival my art, so, cubes are ok by me, but no windows is not.

My favorite work on view were special exhibitions, Young-Hae Chang Heavy Industries and Sharon Haye’s piece. More on the latter later.

As for the former, the multi-channel text-based videos in the lobby by the Seoul-based collective, has had me reconsidering the power fun can have in art. I’m usually not a fan of party as art (assume vivid astro focus, blech), but these guys make you smile, tap and think hard at the same time. See their website. I’ll see how long this feeling lasts.

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