'Disturbing the Peace': Carol Jacobsen; Conviction
Denise Bibro Gallery
529 West 20th Street, Chelsea
Through June 3
"Disturbing the Peace," an all-women, all-photography group show, is a contrarian take on the subject of crime and punishment. Martha Rosler brings Abu Ghraib into the suburban living room; Deborah Bright shoots Plymouth Rock behind bars. Holly Hughes, Joanne Leonard and Susan Meiselas consider, in very different ways, the binds entailed in sexual role-playing. Clarissa Sligh and Pat Ward Williams turn stories of African-American women into narratives of entrapment.
Donna Ferrato contributes annotated photographs of women in prison, and Carol Jacobsen expands on this subject in a small, multimedia solo show, co-sponsored by Amnesty International, in another part of the gallery. Titled "Conviction," it surveys the cases of women sent to jail for killing men who, in one way or another, abused them. Her stark 2002 film about one prisoner who committed suicide rather than live in confinement makes its points in a series of quick, blunt, factual strokes. If my descriptions sound pat, the art is not. HOLLAND COTTER