The Artnet.com Gallery Center features the websites of more than 1,300 galleries and individual artists. And thanks to this unusual collaboration, web cruisers can now sample new exhibitions around the world as they open. Among the important exhibitions premiering this month -- on Artnet.com as well as in the galleries themselves -- are Alighiero e Boetti at Gagosian, Rosemarie Trockel at Barbara Gladstone and Paul McCarthy at Deitch Projects.
Add to this list the selection of 15 sculptures by the British artist Barbara Hepworth (1903-75), most in marble and most from the last 10 years of her life, at PaceWildenstein in New York. For those who might not know the history of 20th-century British art, it was Hepworth, Ben Nicholson (Hepworth's husband) and Henry Moore who in the 1930s developed and extended the biomorphic style that had its roots in the work of Jean Arp, Constantin Brancusi and other School of Paris artists.
The PaceWildenstein exhibition, which opened Feb. 10 and runs through Mar. 17, 2001, is accompanied by a catalogue that includes an essay by Sophie Bowness, an author and curator who is the artist's granddaughter. Though images of several sculptures are on view online, a visit in person would be salutary, and also provide an opportunity to visit Hepworth's iconic Single Form (1963), the 21-foot-tall bronze memorial to Dag Hammarskjold installed in 1964 at the United Nations Building over at 40th Street and the East River. Among the gallery visitors was the current U.N. secretary-general, Kofi Annan.
With its totemic echoes of Surrealism and organic invocations of femininity, Hepworth's work is suggestive of a classic Freudian approach to art and psychoanalysis. For a more contemporary, post-Freudian point of view, a visit to Laurence Hegarty's show at Cynthia Broan Gallery in New York's Chelsea District is in order. Titled "Listen to Me You Normals" (after a line in Godard's Alphaville), Hegarty's exhibition features ranks of "misfit toys" -- a parade of Guys apparently made of poop posed in front of a rank of cardboard missiles, for instance -- that limn a symbolic Bakhtinian battle between normalcy and the carnivalesque. The show is on view Feb. 22-Mar. 31, 2001.
At Chac-Mool Gallery in West Hollywood, a similar battle rages -- though in quite a different language. In "Chromachords and Conversations with God," abstract painter James Hayward (b. 1943) presents new works whose rhythmic strokes of impastoed color create tantric images "devoid of myth, yet mysterious in origin." Size is key, with each painting measuring 10 by 14 inches -- with the luscious, icing-like appearance, you'd almost want to lick them.
Speaking of edible art, Turner Carroll Gallery in Santa Fe presents the Edible Art Tour: Marriage of Food and Art, opening Feb. 23, 2001. In keeping with the title, food associated with marriage will be served at the gallery as part of a benefit for the Santa Fe Gallery Association's educational "ARTsmart" program.
And speaking of savory images, Apex Fine Art in Los Angeles has just opened a show of photos by Howard Schatz from Nude Body Nude, his 11th book of photographs (published by Harper Collins). A photographer whose commercial work has appeared on the covers of U.S. News & World Report's Valentine's Day issue and Black Book's Sharon Stone edition, Schatz turns his lens here on the human feast -- that is to say, finely chiseled bodies artfully posed, and at least one photo featuring a model covered with melted chocolate and holding a strawberry!