In New York this past summer — hiding amid the gods and heroes of the Met’s blowout exhibition of Hellenistic sculpture — was an ardent, astounding suite of pen drawings of a temple’s ruins, sketched by an amateur two hundred miles from Constantinople. “We have found an entire artistic epoch!” the German engineer Carl Humann exulted at Pergamon, and he was savvy enough to know it despite having no archaeological training of any kind. Humann was a road planner, surveying the western extreme of Asia when he stumbled upon the remains of the ancient capital in the late 19th century. You can visit his grave on a hillside in Turkey, a country where history — as the artist Aslı Çavuşoğlu explains in this issue — has become a literal battlefield. He might remind you that the past is everyone’s business, and that modern life requires a constant excavation.

We roamed widely to complete this fifth issue of Even, our largest ever, and traveled not only across the globe but into the history books. Over the course of a year’s reporting, Anna Altman examined an unlikely new art museum in the West Bank (itself a cauldron of archaeological dispute), whose vacant galleries might as well be debating chambers. In Cape Town, M. Neelika Jayawardane met a group of young artists for whom South Africa’s vicious past is not merely source material; it’s the armature of their daily lives, and calls out to be reassembled or else dismantled. Google Earth may tell you the whole world’s been mapped, but there is more to the present than can be captured by camera or code. Once you stop looking for answers beyond the horizon you may find them beneath your feet.

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Reviews

Even, a new magazine about contemporary art.

Even takes a systematic look at contemporary art. We publish long-form articles, ranging from in-depth monographic studies to broad analysis of art and its institutions. We feature distinctive, expansive reviews that take in multiple exhibitions at museums and galleries worldwide.

Portfolio

For Tongue Twister, the Czech artist ROMAN ŠTĚTINA partnered with an 80-year-old veteran of the country's national broadcaster, spoken of by her colleagues as the Czech Republic's "radio memory." She listens to a recording of a wacky sentence filled with P's and K's, and carefully splices out spoken blunders into a perfect recitation, but we never hear it; the doctored recording spools onto an obsolete reel-to-reel machine, held together with tiny pieces of double-sided tape. The film is one of numerous works Štětina has made with Czech Radio, exploring not only its technological innovations and its quiet censorship, but also the historical force of old media in a time besotted with the new. Radio is less an artistic medium than a historical fact: an institution whose audible track muffles underlying rules and crackles with subtle erasures.

Negatives

Even More

Southern Accent.
Nasher Museum, Durham, N.C.
Opens Sept. 1.

In this upside-down presidential election even Georgia is a swing state. The idiosyncrasies and the mutabilities of the American South form the backdrop for this exhibition of 60 artists, which includes the photographs of Carrie Mae Weems and Catherine Opie, paintings by Barkley L. Hendricks and Robert Colescott, and the elegiac reminiscences of the young artist Xaviera Simmons.

Carmen Herrera. Whitney Museum, New York. Opens Sept. 16.

Slow and steady. Still working at 101, the Cuban-American painter receives her first New York retrospective since the revelatory 1998 show at El Museo del Barrio. Herrera’s hard-edged compositions, which feature just two or three colors in precisely divided zones, carry forward a tradition of Latin American abstraction, but there’s a joy and extemporization to Herrera’s art that is echt New York.

Foreign Gods.
Leopoldmuseum, Vienna.
Opens September 23.

Without African and Oceanic art there is no modernism — but time and again, notoriously at MoMA in 1984, attempts to place western painting alongside the “primitive” sculpture that inspired it have fallen short. This modernist museum is giving the theme another go, and will draw on its own collection of central African masks and statuary alongside Picasso, Derain, Kirchner, and company.

Kishio Suga.
Hangar Bicocca, Milan.
Opens September 29.

The sincere and astute sculpture of this Japanese artist comprises unaffected arrangements of rope, wood, stones, or paraffin emphasized not these materials’ formal properties, but the larger environments in which they were situated. This retrospective, which will feature reconstitutions of several major, site-specific early works, will be Suga’s first in a western art institution; a second show of his opens at the Dia in New York this November.