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GREG COOK

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new Gardner wing Piano

Renzo Piano's new wing pays tribute to the Gardner Museum's magic

Intimate grandeur
The challenge from the start of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum expansion project was: how do you follow up a masterpiece? The 99-year-old Fenway institution is world-renowned for its old-master collection installed in dramatic period rooms inside a dream of a Renaissance Venetian palazzo.
By: GREG COOK  |  January 18, 2012

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‘Chicken Little’ and ‘Manchester Tracks’ at the RISD Museum

Discomfort and joy
The star of New York painter Nancy Chunn's epic installation "Chicken Little and the Culture of Fear" at the RISD Museum (224 Benefit Street, Providence, through April 15) is the fabled fowl — you know, the one who mistakenly thought the sky was falling.
By: GREG COOK  |  January 10, 2012

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Brian Zink, Marisa Martino, and Robin Mandel

By design
Zink's new show, "Assembled" at Howard Yezerski Gallery (460 Harrison Ave, Boston, through February 7), features handsome, hard-edged abstractions assembled from mod, jitterbugging patterns of flat Plexiglass tiles.
By: GREG COOK  |  January 10, 2012

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Shows worth seeing in the new year

Eyes wide open
From centuries-old Taoist visions to the ways technology can channel emotions, local exhibits this winter prompt comparisons between then and now.
By: GREG COOK  |  December 28, 2011

Art Preview: 2012

A new Gardner, plus landscapes, performance art, and RAD

Shapeshifting
Greater Boston's art-museum building boom continues with the debut of an expanded Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in January.
By: GREG COOK  |  December 30, 2011

Exhibits worth buzzing about

Vivid visions
After a couple of shaky years, 2011 saw the local gallery scene blossom again.
By: GREG COOK  |  December 20, 2011



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Boston arts institutions flexed their muscles in 2011

Boom town!
The following rundown of the best art exhibits of 2011 shows how greater Boston is now consistently offering some of the richest institutional art exhibition programs in the country.
By: GREG COOK  |  December 28, 2011

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Museum of Natural History’s new ‘Curiouser’ collection

Into the wild
A fact underlying the exhibit "Curiouser," in the lobby of the Providence Museum of Natural History (Roger Williams Park, 1000 Elmwood Avenue, Providence, through September 2012), is that less than two percent of the institution's collection of 250,000 preserved birds, insects, mammals, rocks, fossils, and Native American baskets is on view at any time.
By: GREG COOK  |  December 13, 2011

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‘NetWorks 2011’ is good — but it could be better

Incomplete picture
In 2008, local art collector Joseph Chazan partnered with the Newport Art Museum and AS220 to present the first "NetWorks" project.
By: GREG COOK  |  December 07, 2011

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Mark Cooper and Joe Zane

Crafty messes
"More Is More" is the oh-so-accurate title of Somerville artist Mark Cooper's overflowing cornucopia of an installation at Samson.
By: GREG COOK  |  December 06, 2011

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Brian Chippendale and Jungil Hong’s dazzling new work

A sense of wonder
Brian Chippendale and Jungil Hong were at the center of the gang of artists who pioneered the rascally psychedelic art that boiled out of Providence's screenprinting/postering/comic book/puppet show/wrestlemania/noise rock underground in the late 1990s and early 2000s.
By: GREG COOK  |  November 29, 2011



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Laurel Nakadate at Harvard; 'Destroy All Monsters' at BU

Stranger danger
Laurel Nakadate has danced to Britney Spears with lonely strangers and traveled the country photographing herself in fake pin-ups.
By: GREG COOK  |  November 29, 2011

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“Nostalgia Machines” at Brown’s Bell Gallery

Reconsidering the future
Jonathan Schipper's Measuring Angst (2009) might be a complicated machine built to help you ponder whether your life would be better if you could take back the stupid thing you did last night.
By: GREG COOK  |  November 21, 2011

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Haacke and Piene at MIT

Natural phenomena
"Hans Haacke 1967" at MIT's List Visual Arts Center is a science museum presentation with the educational explanation stripped away, leaving just wonder.
By: GREG COOK  |  November 15, 2011

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Rebecca Macri, Dan Talbot, and Betsey MacDonald at AS220

Contrasts and comparisons
Some time back, Rebecca Macri embroidered a pillow with the rainbow bars of the old terrorism alert chart ("severe" to "low").
By: GREG COOK  |  November 15, 2011

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Buonaccorsi + Agniel opens its doors with “Yes!”

An artistic revival
Providence is one of the most fertile art-making communities anywhere, but commercial galleries showcasing groundbreaking art made here — the art that defines the future — struggle to stay in existence.
By: GREG COOK  |  November 02, 2011



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Aphrodite at the MFA; Pompeii at the Museum of Science

Love and death
The ancient Greeks said the Titan Kronos cut off the penis of his father, Ouranos, the sky, and chucked it into the sea.
By: GREG COOK  |  November 02, 2011

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Cai Guo-Qiang, “Sustainable Beauty,” and “Independents”

Quick impressions
Cai Guo-Qiang has mounted his two big crocodiles at head height, where you can peer into their snapped open jaws lined with fangs.
By: GREG COOK  |  October 25, 2011

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Sage and Tanguy at Wellesley, O'Reilly and Hartley at Yezerski

Kindred spirits
Kay Sage and Yves Tanguy liked each other's paintings of surreal rocky blobs rising on vast, empty landscapes before they met in Paris in 1938, and they liked each other when they were introduced.
By: GREG COOK  |  October 25, 2011

Ellen Driscoll’s ‘Distant Mirrors’; plus, ‘Palimpsestic’

Floating ideas
A few weeks back, three artificial islands made of recycled plastic and dotted with little model buildings — houses, a watch tower, an oil refinery, the Tower of Babel — were floated down the Providence River and anchored just south of the Crawford Street Bridge at South Water Street.
By: GREG COOK  |  October 19, 2011

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'Dance/Draw' at the ICA

Line dancing
When the Institute of Contemporary Art hired Helen Molesworth away from Harvard in 2010, it seemed like the ICA's new chief curator might fill a big gap at the institution: the ability to put together strong theme exhibits.
By: GREG COOK  |  October 18, 2011


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