the New Yorker

Sue de Beer, the Quickening

Teen-agers didn't exist as a sociological category in Puritan New England, but the devoted teenophile de Beer doesn't let that stop her. Where previous installations mined the sex-, drugs-, and fantasy-fuelled lives of adolescents behind closed bedroom doors, "The Quickening" imagines a more repressed, authoritarian era. The shag carpet and beanbags remain; the video is saturated with gothic horror-movie imagery and psychosexual overtones. But there's something more sober about this work, perhaps in its invocation of Jonathan Edwards's 1741 sermon "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God." In musing about sin-as well as about fashion and raging hormones-de Beer seems, one might almost say, more mature. Through Jan. 10. (Boesky, 509 W. 24th St. 212-680-9889.)