Nanténé Traoré

She says it's the high energy

★★☆☆☆

On until 17 February 2024

A social media advert targeted at my middle-aged eyes suggested that old retinas lose their ability to register colour. Traoré’s photographs render this sales pitch obsolete. Even when printed in monochrome, these images scream uncontrollably. They are saturated with colour and noxious self-obsession, the kind of aspirational self-harm made glamourous by Goldin and cos-played by Tillmans. Bodies clash with lights in front of Traoré’s Narcissus camera. They do so not for art but for that Instagram algorithm whose promise I must miss out on.

It needn’t have been so. Traoré wants these images to speak with Apollinaire and Rilke, or at least Björk and Pink Floyd. But not one of these correspondents sought life entirely within his or her body. Traoré, a self-professed obsessive storyteller might one day look past such carnal fixation.


notes and notices are short and curt exhibition reviews. Read more:

Xie Nanxing, Hello, Portrait! at Thomas Dane ★★★★☆

Xie Nanxing

Hello, Portrait!

★★★★☆

Looking at Xie’s portraits is a little like wearing a virtual reality headset over only one eye.

Shu Lea Cheang at Project Native Informant ★★☆☆☆

Shu Lea Cheang

Scifi New Queer Cinema, 1994-2023

★★☆☆☆

With material this gratuitously explicit and a curator this absent, it’s a miracle that this project wasn’t shut down by the licencing, or indeed art-historical authorities.

Max Boyla, Crying like a fire in the sun at Workplace ★★☆☆☆

Max Boyla

Crying like a fire in the sun

★★☆☆☆

Rothko’s abstractions are said to have induced tears in viewers overwhelmed by abstraction. Staring at the sun here, however, barely causes blindness.

Pablo Bronstein, Cakehole at Herald Str ★★★☆☆

Pablo Bronstein

Cakehole

★★★☆☆

Bronstein falls into the late evening stupor of the cheese trolley, the oyster tray, and… the Mars bar.

Gray Wielebinski, The Red Sun is High, the Blue Low at ICA ★☆☆☆☆

Gray Wielebinski

The Red Sun is High, the Blue Low

★☆☆☆☆

I knew that it was possible to understand art and life less after seeing an exhibition. I didn’t, however, imagine that experiencing Wielebinski’s work twice would only compound such damage.

Julia Maiuri, Yesterday & The End at Workplace ★☆☆☆☆

Julia Maiuri

Yesterday & The End

★☆☆☆☆

One can only imagine that some unconscious loathing of postmen motivated this project.

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