Susan Rothenberg


Painter said...

Susan Rothenberg @
Sperone Westwater
415 West 13th Street
New York, NY 10014

zipthwung said...

This was a bad show. Not since the eponymous "vuelva al futuro III:" show has there been such a dog by such a well know, and eponymous artist.

Is it the stench of rotting flesh? lost in translation from attenuatated alienated flashes of New Mexican sun? The proverbial boiling of the proverbial frog?

How can something so out of touch with NEW YORK be on PAINTERSNYC?

oh, theres the faux expressionism so touted in several artists, including the Norwegian Albert Ohelen, who is named all too often for no reason the market in particuar. oh but he's so droll!

What tribes? Obviously an entrenched and stodgy bunch, retrograde and reactionary, fearfull of losing their art pension, their market inch. Their modicum of je ne sais quoi.

Cannonized? We broke the unions! Out with the trash I say!

THe new era requires newer, more elaborate strategies! More subversive! Plus de subversion! More avant guard! Recherche la derriere guard! SO that we, and we alone are running at the barricades, cocktails in hand (explosive!) Run tiger run! THe young turks are younger no longer and their machine guns are no match for the juju armor. I give you the key to heaven; a ticket to hell, should you wish to visit!
Run run! No the other way?
They tore down the goal posts and revuilt the stadium as a carnegie lyceum. Do you have your day pass?

What monopoly have they, to erect such an affront to the cause, such as it is?

The gallery is almost as pretentious as Elizabeth Dee, and yet has more money! How can that be? Does Bellweather, whos grandmarm could outsniff royalty, in a land that hos no royals! Ah the true heir apparent with yale pedigree trailing ,taillike, from the oubliette of ignomy. Or anomie.

I dont read baudrillard, I embody it, like a cheese scented cheese. Like a breeze scented aerosol!

Arbeit macht frei! as heidegger says.

How does it feel to me Miss Interpreted? I wouldnt know, how do you define interpretation? Interpenetration? Indignation?

zipthwung said...

I think attitude becomes form around robert ryman,


zipthwung said...

I think attitude becomes form around robert ryman,


Cross said...

I met and talked briefly with Susan at a talk she gave on her paintings shortly after 9-11-01. She had just been in NYC and described seeing the destruction. Her description is still more vivid for me than all the pictures, and her sadness was evident. Although this style in which she picks apart her figures was started before that tradgedy, they take on a new meaning for me because of that insight into what NYC meant and means to her.

Out of touch with New York? She will never be that, although she may paint about the loss of leaving and the loss of what she left.

Oh, and I like her paintings.

zipthwung said...

Theres more money to be made off of 9-11, sure, I'll grant you that.

My fave is the coin with the 9-11 silver coin - "when the silver is gone its gone!"

"Instead of being made of pure silver, Spitzer said in court documents, the medallion is an inexpensive metal alloy plated with one ten-thousandth of an inch of silver. Its value is about 1.4 cents, Spitzer said.

On Friday, the coins were being offered for sale on e-Bay for $49.95 each.

Build it and they will come.

zipthwung said...


no-where-man said...

im a fan - for me very nyc in a real 1970's shadow chaseing (i was not there) nostaliga way.

exu said...

The sense of touch is beautiful -the naked sincerity leaves me feeling a bit dreary,tho,like after I shop at the local food coop-

zipthwung said...

Yeah, sincerity. For me its what they were teaching in school, you know, load up your brush and drag it over the canvas like you just dont care.

Or take a rembrandt and erase into it. Like Longo, only allegro or venti or whatever.

Drop a needle on some better wax.

The human touch. WHo needs that? Machines are much more precise.

camron said...

Horses I can understand but who wants to have sex witha dog?

Decay Image said...

Rick Santorum, I think. He's the one with man-on-dog love on his mind. Too bad we won't have him around to ridicule anymore.

zipthwung said...

I was reading about how every snowflake is different, in my chaos theory book (gleik). Its a bit pop, but it does have some profound insights into the nature of nature.

For example every brush stroke is diffrent. Put that in your pipe and smoke it.

Anyone like Andy Goldsworthy?
Jingle Jangle.

Decay Image said...

The flapping of brushstrokes in New Mexico causes a hurricane in New York?

zipthwung said...

Montana rocks.

SisterBee said...

Oooh! Love this. Out of touch with New York? Why?

zipthwung said...

I just dont think expressionism is in. That would mean I have to flip flop from my taste for razor edged conceptual "waffle" paintings.

And that I just will not do. Not without the popular vote.

Also: William wegman, I think your dog needs a nap.

zipthwung said...

You know cecily browns painted joke about dekooning being coitus interuptus?

In the same way, Im glad Susan is bringing it home, but this looks like the cover to ploughshares magazine or something.

SisterBee said...

Hmm... I'm chiming in from Boulder, CO. Expressionism is definitely in around here these days. Rothenberg's work seems fresh & appealing to me. Beautiful brushiness. Colors. All that white and pink and black. Goofy. But sincere. What the heck is going on with those dogs, anyway?

closeuup said...

You might think id like this but i dont. Too much image. And I hate dogs (and rick santorum). Im beginning to hate cats too. Robert Ryman I love.

And if we're talkin coitus interruptus. I was going to say on the Kaye Donachie (love it) thread...my great great grandparents came here from scotland to live on the oneida commune. they practiced all sorts of kooky things including CI as birth control and a method to create equality for women. Ok so at least they tried as i always say. see where it comes from? I love Sam Durant too. Andy Goldsworthy is not as good as his predecessor Richard Long but they are both pretty OK

zipthwung said...

Its all Sierpinski sponge painting out here. THat or nostalgie pour la boue. arte povera or thrift store conceptualism.

I was doing bookshelves as altars waaaaay before everyone. Im too young to be the first to have done paintings of bookshelves, but video of my book collection art is really in on utube. WHo did that first?

zipthwung said...

Eva hess, I hiss.

Hey is beauty gendered? Because I think I see a pretty weimaraner.

camron said...

William Wegman also humps dogs and andy goldsworthy masturbates while he watches

camron said...

I was reading in my queer theory book about snowflakes. You can tell how gay someone is by how many they can catch on their tongue

no-where-man said...

Un chien andalou


In The Words Of Ornette Coleman "there is no bad music just bad performances" same with painting or sculpture get over the idea of rules "not NYC" "expressionism is out"and so on but YES ZIP it was a mediocre performance By the way what did you think of JerryS dissing M.B.? you can read about it on the Artform Diary I mean ..like Jerry was bragging 4-5 years ago about he was the first to see MBs greatness Oh my God is John Currin next? The way Roberta and Jerry are going they might even like me ?..no no that would be to radical...right Jerry but then again after the Brice reviews...but dont worry all you pomo pin heads Roberta doesnt have the Tits to go all the way..she always backs off

Mothra said...

I want to like this; she's a seminal figure & I liked the horse paintings. But it feels like she's not progressing, stuck in the 80s, and those body parts remind me too much of Nauman's taxidermy forms.

zipthwung said...

Yes, bad performance. And the last show was better - but still sucked. The next show should put the nail in the coffin. Or the coffin nail will be used up. Either way, Im voting her off the island. There can be only one, after all.

I did like the Scarface sculpture in the little side room though. Theres some theory about how you know, in the mirror hall, mirrors and all that - wish I could remember.

Anyways it reminded me of the scene in scarface where the dude is telling Pacino about how they opperate.

Then I got to thinking about horses heads.

I shoulda gone to the passion=money (jesus Christ? Everything is filmic for me) thing but you know 5 bucks is a pint or almost a six pack at the bodegga. WHat would I learn really? Let the rubes and the marks go. Why ask why? Double your pleasure? Image is nothing?
Touch and Be Touched.

but you know wheres Jerry's catalog essay for the Mathew show? Is there one? I dont think so.

Last I head Jerry was cooing over restraint. But oops, now hes taking the piss? Is he really? OMG what did he say?

What does that mean? Jerrys not good enough? Big Trouble in Little China? Luck of the draw?

10-4 good buddy!

I remember when it was transhuman this and leather pants that, just a few short years ago.

Kim Levin (VV critic) reads like Saltz - conversational, rah rah sis boom bah, pop poms and all that. Did she get nominated for a fucking pulitzer? MAke a fortune on the art market? Thats not ethical, no no no nah no.

Is the nomination some sort of ironic diss?

Not to say I read much - VV - its free and easy and i have no place Im going to.

no-where-man said...

KMA - more details then talkback..? seems unclear, what do u think about the fact that he was not in No Restraint?

Anonymous said...

A seminal figure for sure, in her time. And there are some works in the show that remind me of Susan Rothenberg: Three Breathing Heads, 2006, for example.
At some point in her career Ms. Rothenberg wanted to be able to do things with paint like others were doing--drawing in form, giving greater more distinct form to things--to bring 'them' out in the light.

And at least on one level, this she continues to do. However, perhaps this against some better, deeper, judgment, or instinct. What lurks on the canvas and in drawings is an inhalation of darkness less inspirational bits, often indeed resembling a mask; or a straight cancelled-out line, a blinding zip, though this all lacks the primal or spiritual power of her early work. This is vivisection--a ceremony of sorts.

It could be argued some decisions, expected freedoms, didn't come up for Ms. Rothenberg.
It's time just to stand back, stop looking: Never turn back! That's the secret of all new revolutionary leaps. There are signals up on offer, for both the viewer and Susan Rothenberg.
We should all take the leap.

zipthwung said...

SW is a hard space for any artist to look good in.

Needs a redesign if you ask me.

Begin with the entrance and work to the spray booths in back.

But in any case, if there was curation it was lost on me. Seemed more like a sample sale.

Never look back?

Ever see "The Cell"?

Charles Satchi has a cameo in it.

PrettyPablum said...

New York, New Mexico, 80's, Now, snowflakes, brushstrokes, who cares?

This is a bad painting period. What the hell is that in the upper left corner? My eye keeps going to it and it looks like a pink mask of some sort, like something in an S&M emporium. Not good. Makes me think- Beastiality? Ugh, ugh, ugh. This is stupid. Bad color, bad composition, and fer godsakes SR is an artist who needs many, many of these dodgy and manic little strokes to make a convincing image this just does nothing. Line? Don't get me started.

The domino paintings are much better and dominoes are so New York. Dog humping is what happens when you keep up your white wine habit up in that thin air.

Anonymous said...

I hate the gimmicky part of this painting but you have to admit her handling of paint over the years has been really good. Its like she has gotten board and doesnt no what to paint. No direction. I have only seen one of her paintings in person. It was from the UBS collection. It was a blue figure forming the shape of a U.

no-where-man said...

Clemente + Twombly + Zooiphile

tumbleweed said...

This is a tough one. i am inclined to like it in the end, though.
let's get a lot of people talking, so the discussion is not dominated by one voice!

closeuup said...

you start

average joe said...

It seems to be the conjuring of a muddled rememberence that took place in the dog park one snowy afternoon.

Decay Image said...

I want to like SR, I really do. As Brent said, a seminal figure. Her horse paintings were hugely transformative in the 70's. She put up these gigantic paintings at 33 Greene street and everyone was in awe. Plus she was a really nice person, had been a single mother, raising a kid and painting in her kitchen or something. When the art world annoints someone like this you really want to wish her well and hope for the best. But it is disappointment every time. I was holding off, trying to think of something original to say, but I am afraid the critical posts have said it all. I'm just weighing in.

I am afraid she keeps trying to wring something intense out of those flurry of brush strokes (all the same size by the way, why?) but the results have been trite and banal for a long time. And not in a good, quotidian, this is everyday life kind of way. Maybe I have been waiting for a Guston-like transformation that has never occured. The drawing skills (I don't mean in an academic sense) and ideas of space just aren't there to make something imaginative happen. Or maybe vice-versa. Again I think Brent has nailed it. For whatever reason she has not been able to utitilize the freedoms she helped bring into play.

kalm james said...

With what looks like pins in the corners, I’m assuming this is a “work on paper.” I don’t think this really shows off what Rothenberg does (when it comes of well) to it best advantage. That said, I’ve had a problem with her work since she stopped using the horse silhouette. Her switch to oils in the early eighties seemed a retreat from the dry flat “minimalistic” “New Image” painting that brought her initial recognition. As my old art school teacher always said “can’t go wrong painting animals or portraits”. Everybody loves horses, they’re just more aesthetic than dogs. Nobody wants to spread a bunch of dog crap on their rose bushes.

Seminal, schmeminal I think this piece points to all the reasons Neo-Ex painting has been dissed in New York: Is this funny of tragic? Can’t we get beyond black white and red? Is the hound eating those body parts (could be more interesting) or what? What’s that brown thing being held on the lower left? (Another little dog, a poop scooping bag, kibbles ‘n bits?) Some how the Storm und Drag of the badassed expressionists just doesn’t come off when it’s reduced to making cutesy puppy paintings. Maybe this is a transition from the big tough Neo-Expressionism to big goofy painting. In that case, it might be more challenging than first assumed.

SisterBee said...

Wow. Tough crowd.

zipthwung said...


Anonymous said...

I have always heard that Rothenberg was hard to deal with. I know a guy that worked at ULAE in the 90's and she was not his favorite person.

Anonymous said...

i'm not really a fan, but then again I don't know a lot about art - but i know what i like, and I don't like this.

Anonymous said...

Rothenberg does not translate in reproductions. Her paintings only seem "alive" in person.

"The artist is so attuned to the expression of her spiritual aspirations through her art, not only could she create with her eyes closed, she does." hehe
---from Art Criticism 101

zipthwung said...

the big pink horse is great. Thats why shes cannonized. The wolves chewing up a rabbit or whatever is groovy but this is isnt that.
Get out of the pot, peter.

NNCGT said...

Doesn't her cannonization have something to do with Bruce? The "big pink horse" is anything but great, but this does look even worse. A terrible artist techincally with absolutely nothing to say at all.