AxME, Ellen Gallagher

The Ellen Gallagher show at the New Museum is missing a lot of her major works. That's probably because they're at the Tate Modern where her career survey, AxME is wrapping up at the end of this month. Laura Cummings, from The Observer, had a hard time with show
A certain fragility, shading into deliberate feebleness in the case of Elizabeth Peyton and Karen Kilminik, has been quite a trait of US painting in recent years. Ellen Gallagher has it too, if put to a quite different and much more serious end. But her intricate and ever-evolving aesthetic draws too much attention to itself. She has said that her work makes people "uncomfortable". If only it had that power.

Besides fragility and feebleness  Cummings also had difficulty with the quantity of work as well as Gallagher's excessively elusive intellectualism.  It's a pretty strange review overall, so I doubt I'm adding her column to my reading list.

Here's the Tate's description of Gallagher's "Bird in Hand"
The exhibition includes other such key works as Bird in Hand 2006, a complex relief built up in layers of printed matter, plasticine, crystal, paint, gold leaf and salt. In Bird in Hand, human life and marine life converge at the bottom of the ocean in a mythical black Atlantis.
Ellen Gallagher
Bird in Hand 2006
Oil, ink, paper, polymer, salt, gold leaf on canvas support: 2383 x 3072 mm
detail Ellen Gallagher, Bird in Hand

Ellen Gallagher 
DeLuxe 2004-5
60 works on paper, etching, screenprint, lithograph with plasticine, velvet, toy eyeballs and coconut oil


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