Andrew Hultkrans

Apples and Oranges

Laura Poitras at the Whitney and Apple v. the FBI

February 2016 NEW YORK

ONE OF THE PERILS of political art is that it stays still as politics, trumpeted by the daily news, marches on. Laura Poitras, the Pulitzer- and Oscar-winning documentary filmmaker whose “9/11 Trilogy” culminated in CITIZENFOUR (2014), … READ ON


Hack the Planet

“Images of Surveillance” at the Goethe-Institut

December 2015

LEAVE IT TO THE COUNTRY that brought us the Gestapo and STASI to teach the Land of the Free about the perils of surveillance. Unlike the British, who have inexplicably embraced CCTV and other snooping technologies despite having produced … READ ON



Andrew Hultkrans on Whit Stillman’s Metropolitan

August 2015

A CONFESSION: I am a lapsed preppy. Using the term feels false, though—an affectation—as I was not a prep school/Ivy League legacy, which was the defining characteristic of true preppies in my day. My parents were not blue bloods but … READ ON


Tales from the Crypto

Andrew Hultkrans on Best of Enemies

July 2015

POLITICAL PARTY TIME in America has rarely been more riotous than during the 1968 presidential nominating conventions. The stakes—Vietnam, civil rights, the sexual revolution, the counterculture v. the as yet unnamed “silent majority”—were… READ ON


Struth Be Told

Thomas Struth at Live from the NYPL

December 2014 NEW YORK

LIKE KRAFTWERK, those other celebrated sons of 1970s Düsseldorf, Thomas Struth embodies remote, dispassionate stillness. From his rigorously symmetrical street scenes, often devoid of people or motion, to his striking, clinical family … READ ON


Empire State of Mind

“The Return of Schizo-Culture” at MoMA PS1

November 2014 NEW YORK

“MEDIOCRITY IS THE NEW BLACK, PEOPLE!” Bemoaning New York’s postmillennial makeover as a “luxury vitrine for the rest of the world,” as Semiotext(e) founder Sylvère Lotringer put it earlier in the day, Penny Arcade exhorted the … READ ON


Coming Up Roses

Andrew Hultkrans on the Elliott Smith documentary Heaven Adores You

July 2014

“BEHIND THE EYES of the Oregon girls it was raining again in Portland,” Nelson Algren wrote in his 1956 novel A Walk on the Wild Side. “Somehow it was always raining behind the eyes of Oregon girls.” And so it always seemed to be for… READ ON


Born To Lose

Andrew Hultkrans on Looking for Johnny

May 2014

“BEST REVERSE Keith Richards I’ve ever seen.” This is how Television’s Richard Lloyd, who knows something about the subject, describes the inverse trajectories of junk and (in)fame lived out by doomed New York Dolls/Heartbreakers … READ ON


Main Street

The opening of “City as Canvas”

February 2014 NEW YORK

GROWING UP in New York City during the 1970s and ’80s, I assumed that subway cars would always be psychedelic—rolling metal loaves with multihued fluorescent frosting, brightening grim tunnels and el tracks with every color of the spectrum.… READ ON


Paramount Importance

Exploring Paramount Records at the New York Public Library

November 2013 NEW YORK

IT’S AN OLD AMERICAN STORY, perhaps the story, at least in terms of our popular music heritage: Black-owned record label (Black Swan) is bought by white-owned record label (Paramount), which records and markets black music to black people… READ ON