As part of SVA’s rigorous MFA Art Criticism and Writing program, students develop their skills by contributing to Degree Critical, the department’s online journal of articles and exhibition reviews, which is edited by faculty members Raphael Rubinstein and Nancy Princenthal, both contributing editors at Art in America magazine. Emerging critics must refine their ability to talk about art and its role in life in engaging and meaningful ways, and the current crop of students are doing just that. As 2011 draws to a close, the Briefs looks back at some of the highlights from the journal over the past year.
In April, Alex Allenchey reviewed Gagosian’s noteworthy exhibition “Malevich and the American Legacy” as it tried to make ambitious connections between Kazimir Malevich and conceptual art, and Noah Dillon provided perspective on the state of fine arts education in his book review of Art School: Propositions for the 21st Century (MIT Press 2009). Kareem Estefan discussed the fine art of assemblage in his review of Christian Marclay’s blockbuster, 24-hour video work The Clock, and Sarah Stephenson (MFA Art Criticism 2011) wrote about Fine Arts faculty member and alumnus Sarah Sze’s (MFA 1997 Fine Arts) first New York gallery show in five years. More recently, Juliet Helmke examined the legacy of Haim Steinbach when he had his first solo exhibition at Tanya Bonakdar this fall, and Sara Christoph discussed Michelle Lopez’s penchant for abusing surfaces at Simon Preston.