WASHINGTON, DC von ammon co. “MENTAL”—the title alone encapsulates how many people identify the zeitgeist in this dystopian era, a crisis, in part, of individual freedom and choice that 20th-century existentialist Jean-Paul Sartre predicted in Being and Nothingness. New York-based Tabor Robak updated the theme with wily poignancy in his recent show.
WASHINGTON, DC Various locations In a city chockablock with monuments, “By the People” alternatively mounts ephemeral public art. Organized by the nonprofit organization Halcyon, which also sponsors residencies for social practice artists and social entrepreneurs, the 2019 “By the People” festival (its second installment) aimed to present “artwork that sparks dialogue and builds bridges within and across communities.”
LONDON Pippy Houldsworth DiMattio, who is based in New York, started out as a painter of monumental, boundary-pushing canvases that played with optical illusion and references to the history of art, design, and architecture. She translated this fluidity of approach to clay when she took up the medium in 2010.
RUTLAND, VERMONT 77 Gallery Using a simplicity of means, Whitney Ramage achieved a magnitude of results in her recent exhibition “DisEmbodiment.” In her masterful installation A Prayer for Every Day You’ve Been Gone, more than 1,800 white origami paper boats seemed to float across the polished wood floor of the gallery.
EDINBURGH Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, Modern One Scottish artist Katie Paterson has described time as the “material” with which she creates her work. In this modest but significant survey—her first major exhibition in a public institution in Scotland—her playful, rigorously researched works tick with the passing of millennia as stars die, solar eclipses pass, and planets spin.
HELSINKI Galerie Anhava Estarriola’s dynamic grab bag of sights, sounds, and situations communicated on visual, intellectual, emotional, and physical levels, demonstrating her ability to manifest the idiosyncratic and ambiguous hunches and impressions that inform our reality in concrete terms.
SOMERSET, U.K. Hauser & Wirth In “A Wonderful Anarchy,” Bharti Kher presented new works produced during a three-month residency with Hauser & Wirth Somerset in 2017. An array of found objects expressed her interest in the dual concepts of the mythological and scientific, the secular and ritualistic, and the physical and psychological.
BELLEVUE, WASHINGTON Bellevue Arts Museum “Collaborator,” Oscar Tuazon’s recent exhibition, reprised and reinstalled various projects with his brother and fellow artist, Elias Hansen, added new collaborations, and, most importantly, used BAM’s 2001 building as a plinth for older works as well as a frame for new rearrangements.
NEW YORK Karma De Othello employs a popularizing faux naiveté, deliberately handling sophisticated materials in a crude way, as if an expert had assisted a child. Here, the presentation mocked despair, weighed urban desolation with historical oppression, and ended on an uplifting note that was neither condemning nor angry.
NEW YORK The Met Breuer The work of Mrinalini Mukherjee (1949–2015) is astounding, melding craft, high concept, and humor with the consequences of pressing Modernism through the sieve of traditional Indian cultural forms. Her sculptures are overtly sensual, referencing aspects of human sexuality and the fecundity of nature. Both simple and complex, they play at the boundaries between abstract and figurative, artificial and natural.