Saturday, March 1, 2014

Malerie Marder, Anatomy @ Leslie Tonkonow Artworks + Projects

I don’t know. There are a picture or two here that are okay, like the one of a blonde woman with her hands in the air and a swath of yellow behind her and the one of a woman with the side of her head shaved and inexplicably covered in dots. But the show is mostly formally amateurish pictures of European prostitutes posed to reference classic paintings. The work is odd, like a photojournalist trying to do something artsy. Which is perplexing, because Marder is a lot of things, but a photojournalist without a reference point for contemporary art, she is not. The work is just so empty. Outside of the picture of a single emaciated woman, there is little in the pictures that would make you worry about the women in the pictures or their choice of profession, and there certainly isn’t much eroticism or even classical form. They’re just awkward. And the work does little to talk about prostitution, sex, women or art history. It is the opposite in every way of Sarah Anne Johnson’s work right down the hall at Julie Saul.

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