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CENTER FOR CURATORIAL STUDIES AT BARD COLLEGE PUBLISHES ILYA KABAKOV: 1969-1998, A CATALOGUE OF THE 2000 SUMMER EXHIBITION Catalogue features an essay by author Amei Wallach and 43 illustrations of Kabakov's work

Emily Darrow

ANNANDALE-ON-HUDSON, N.Y.-The Center for Curatorial Studies at Bard College has recently published a catalogue of the 2000 CCS exhibition, Ilya Kabakov: 1969-1998. Distributed by D.A.P./Distributed Art Publishers, the catalogue highlights the exhibition, which was the most comprehensive presentation to date of Kabakov's art. Designed by the artist as a "Total Installation," Ilya Kabakov included intimately scaled early work, as well as paintings and larger installations, four of which had never been exhibited in this country, according to Amada Cruz, director of the CCS Museum.

Kabakov's "best installations use words and pictures to create structures in which alternative versions of reality are dizzyingly layered and intricately interconnected," writes Ken Johnson of the 2000 exhibition. "His art is an argument for pluralism in the deepest sense of the word, not a lazy relativism but a belief in the multiplicity of worlds born of an all-too-intimate knowledge of ideological fundamentalism."

The most recent work in Ilya Kabakov: 1969-1998 was the exhibition itself, according catalogue essayist Amei Wallach, a writer and Kabakov expert. "Kabakov braided the more than fifty disparate works together so that they led viewers on a psychological, ontological, aesthetic journey, at the end of which they emerged dazed by the onslaught of images and information and possessed of altered perceptions of art, history, and their relationship to both," writes Wallach.

Kabakov's installations are complex environments, which immerse viewers in other worlds: communal Soviet apartments, the studio of an untalented artist, an old Russian school. Humorous and often melancholy narratives in the form of texts on paintings or drawings add to the poignancy of the work.

Other catalogues published by the CCS include Takashi Murakami: The Meaning of the Nonsense of the Meaning (1999, Center for Curatorial Studies/Abrams), with essays by Amada Cruz, Dana Friis-Hansen, and Midori Matsui. This is the first monograph about this important artist. With reproductions of dozens of Murakami's works, insightful essays, and an exuberant Tokyo-pop design, this volume appeals to contemporary art fans as well as those interested in anime, manga, and other aspects of Japanese culture. The catalogue was published in conjunction with the 1999 CCS survey exhibition Takashi Murakami: The Meaning of the Nonsense of Meaning.

The Film Art of Isaac Julien (2000, Center for Curatorial Studies/D.A.P.)-with texts by Julien, David Deitcher, and David Frankel, and an introduction by Amada Cruz-collects for the first time Julien's critical writings, which offer a challenging and exciting perspective on issues of cultural politics and aesthetics, particularly where questions of black and gay identity are concerned. Julien is Britain's preeminent black filmmaker, as well as an internationally recognized artist, writer, teacher, and scholar. His work employs a unique coupling of narrative and avant-garde strategies to explore issues of race, gender, and sexuality. The Film Art of Isaac Julien documents his 2000 CCS survey exhibition-including a trilogy of film/video installations that examine both the complexities and possibilities of eroticism and desire, as well as his latest work, The Long Road to Mazatlan, which explores the myth of the cowboy in gay culture.

Upcoming publications in October 2001 from the CCS include two catalogues of the summer 2001 exhibitions. Sarah Sze will include an introduction and interview with Sze by Cruz and essays by Elizabeth Smith, chief curator at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago, and Douglas Rushkoff, professor in cyberculture at New York University. Tony Feher: Red Room and More . . . will include an introduction by Cruz and essays by artist John Lindell and Bill Arning, curator of the MIT List Center, as well as an interview with Adam Weinberg, director of the Addison Gallery of American Art. Each catalogue will be the most substantial print documentation of its subject's work to date.

David Shrigley, a catalogue with essays by Cruz and Russell Ferguson, deputy director for exhibitions and chief curator of the UCLA Hammer Museum, will accompany the exhibition of this Glasgow-based artist, to be held at the CCS from September 30 through December 14, 2001.

For further information or to order the catalogues, call the CCS at 845-758-7598, e-mail, or visit the website

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[Editor's Note: For a review copy of any of the catalogues, call 845-758-7512 or e-mail]

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This event was last updated on 08-24-2001