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17 posts from January 2006

January 31, 2006

2nd MAO Art Quiz.. OutSide Art!

2nd MAO Art Quiz... First Person with the correct answer wins a prize!

I'm sure by now everyone in NYC has seen at least one ad or story about the Outsider Art Fair.  Well.. while not a big fan of Outsider Art.. The Editorial Staff at MAO is a huge advocate for Outside Art... Particularly the Free, Open to the Public, type.

So this was the inspiration for the second MAO Art Quiz. Since NY City museums all seem to feel they need to overcharge to get in.. $15 freakin bucks to get into the Neue Galerie??  Who are they kidding?  We figured let's pick an artwork that everyone can afford to see.. So you won't see this "Work of Art" in any Museum..

But, I believe at 35 Feet tall, this 2005 bronze is possibly the tallest free standing, modern art, human statue currently in Manhattan.  And ain't she just a beauty??  WOW! One art critic called her hideous, an eyesore, and suggested the people responsible should be fired! Anything that can provoke a reaction like that.. is clearly art !
Mao_quiz2_a

Mao_quiz2_bSo I took most of these really bad photo's, so please excuse my terrible photography.. Still learning how to use my digital camera.. Plus.. I'm a collector.. Not an Artist!! Actually I personally think it may look a bit better slightly blurred! It gives her that whimsical quality!

So the first MAO reader to name the Artist who  created this work, and gives the correct name, wins an annual Membership to a Museum of their choosing. If you'd like to email your answer.. that's OK too. ModernArtObsession@yahoo.com

Mao_quiz2_c

I'm hoping this one is a bit easier than the last one..

So for all you Art Pro's out there who like a challenge.. Extra MAO  genius points  if  you can name the building and it's designer in which this statue is Mao_quiz2_estanding in front. And I think, a real Art Pro won't have to Google the building's name to know the designer!!

So Good Luck.. and thanks to everyone who participates!

Mao_quiz2_g

Friday Night.. Chelsea Art Opening Crawl...

Busy Work Week.. Had to say bye bye to Alan Greenspan today, we miss you already!

But I had some time to hang with JG, one of my only friends who actually goes to art openings for something other than the free beer!  It had been a hard week, so we decided to drink crawl our way through some parties galleries this Friday night in Chelsea.

1st Stop.. A visit with the fun people (Michael, Meg, and Teka) at Sikkema Jenkins & Co..

Their new, Jeff Gauntt, and David Humphrey Exhibition had a big crowd as expected.. the show has some fun new works. Another wise art blogger..summed it up already, and he posted one of the David Humphrey works.. here are 2 others by Jeff.

Jeff_gauntt_bird And, no.. you can't just buy the bird... I already asked.. and was told. most emphatically NO!

Jeff_gauntt_house_1 Also The ever insightful, Ed Winkleman had a nice feature on David Humphrey as his artist of the week back on Jan 9th.  Ed also posted several photo's of David's early paintings and sculptures.

Burtbarr_video Sikkema Jenkins & Co, also have up 2 recent video's by Burt Barr.

I took one photo of "The Heater video"

(pictured here),

and there's a really cool Flock of Migrating Birds.. projected on 2 angled walls

in the back-back gallery.

2nd Stop.. We went to the new location and grand opening of

The Casey Kaplan Gallery on West 21st street.

It is a really expensive large amazing space to see Wohnsiefer_moonlamptheir new show by Johnnes Wohnseifer: "New Alphabet".

There were several totally dull boring "interesting" graphic works presented, but the beers were cold...so we hung out and took a second drink look at the art.

But by far my favorite was the Untitled (13 Moon Lamp) hanging in the rear gallery.

It's made of Wire,

13 airbags,

13 energy saving lamps.  It's a unique piece.

3rd Stop.. We staggered walked up to 26th street, to the Nicole Klagsbrun Gallery.

A solo video exhibition by Mika Rottenberg... DOUGH.

I had remembered her colorful work from this summer's PS1 Greater NY show.

Dough But this time.. it was a new very haunting video..amazing!

I couldn't snap a picture cause I was too drunk to focus the crowd was too deep..

But let's just say.. it's quite the Human Rube Goldberg. Very original. Even JG managed to smile!

I picked this image off their gallery website.. cause mine were all blurry I just had to include at least one photo.

It's a WOW!!!

I highly recommend not missing this show..

I think I'm still having nightmares dreams about this one!

OK.. So be sure to check back here tomorrow.. Cause it's the first of the month.. which means time for the next MAO Art Quiz!! And this one, I think will be easy!!

Emerging Artists Auctions??

So maybe the high attitude prices of the Christies and Sothebys Auctions don't fit your budget taste?  Believe it or not.. some people would rather pay this months rent then buy modern art at auction.. go figure!

Well for all those aspiring Art Auction Junkies, MAO readers.. there are alternatives! An art auction equivalent, to the fun Affordable Art Fair.  Of course there's always EBay, but I also like to check out.. iGavel, The Charity Auctions (a cool list thanks to Bloggy.com), and I just learned of this interesting new event. Sparkling Fresh Silent Art Auction tonight Jan 31st 6:30-9pm.. Featuring the work of 12 emerging NYC artists.

Hey.. and if nothing else.. there's free food and drinks!

It also sounds like an interesting venue for emerging artists to have their work seen..

Sparklingfresh_1

January 30, 2006

Photo LA

So what do Helen Hunt, Brendan Fraser, and Heath Ledger all have in common?  All Big-Time Closeted Homo's Hot Hollywood Actors..? Hmmm... Maybe.. But... they were also, all seen at the highly successful 15th Annual Photo LA organized by Stephen Cohen last week!

It sounds like the Santa Monica fair was a big success. See this Photo District News Story by Jori Finkel.

70 Exhibitors, and 7,000 Attendees...

Some Major trends to consider...

Ruudvanempel - H2 Hummer Sized New Color Photo's are IN... Old Small 19th-Century Black & White are OUT

- Ruud Van Empel (photo inserted) is IN.... Loretta Lux OUT

- Brian Clamp IN.... Larry Miller OUT

- Nancy Burson's Composite Photos IN... Helen Levitt vintage work OUT

-Big Splashy Art Fairs IN !

- New photo artists hocking their portfolios to the very Busy Gallery Owners... Always WAY  OUT!!!

Hmmm... on second thought.. some of this sounds a bit scary to me.. maybe it's time to take another look at buying those vintage Helen Levitt B&W's?  Though this Ruud Van Empel photo looks pretty cool !

January 27, 2006

The Spring Art Auctions Looking Interesting Already!

Ok..Now I know.. I'm going to sound like a total nut job Art Auction Junkie, but there are some big events coming up! So get your paddles ready... It's Hammer Time in NYC!!

1. Sothebys is to auction off photography from the Metropolitan Museum including works from the Gilman Paper Collection on Feb 14th and 15th. This 113 Lot high quality sale surprisingly is even ok for the poor newbie photo collectors... since there are several items up with estimates under $5000. Take a look at the special mini-site from Sotheby's just for the event!  There's a good chance this sale might even set some new records for the highest prices ever paid for single photographs...  For Exampl.. Lot 6, Edward Steichen's "The Pond -- Moonlight" has an PreSale Est of $700,000 to 1,000,000. Preview party February 8th.

Steichen_thepondmoonlight

2. Christies to is Auction off the Bankrupt REFCO corporate Art Collection. Download REFCO_Auction.txt   It's a pretty big professionally curated (by Adam Brooks) collection.  REFCO published a full catalog of the collection, Subjective Realities in 2003.  The collection is mostly modern photography, spanning almost every major contemporary photographer from the 80's and 90's.. but also includes a few older Diane Arbus, and Walker Evans works.

Since it's a judge order bankruptcy auction.. it will be interesting to see if the entire collection will be liquidated without reserve levels.May be a great buying opportunity!

Plaster_man 3. A Bust of Marie Antoinette, or 7 foot tall headless 18th Century Male Statue anyone?  So this maybe a museum de-acquisition event The MAN - Tyler Green might approve of..

  Sothebys will hold a sale of The Metropolitan Museum's Historic Plaster replicas stored in their Bronx warehouse on Feb 28th in 177 lots.  These are all old plaster reproductions, and that now The Met has such an amazing stolen looted collection of the real statues, they don't need these reproductions anymore.

They'll be running a free shuttle from the Sothebys office to the Bronx to view the works.. I also think everything is being sold without reserve.. so you never know, that 6 ft by 4 ft, Large Plaster Romanesque Pediment Carved with Angels you've always needed could be yours for a song!

Lastly...

4. Christies just posted their Spring NYC Photography Sale for Feb 14th on their website. 278 Lots, Highlights to include Peter Beard Portraits, and a Large 15"x19" semi-vintage (1975)  Ansel Adams Moonrise, Hernandez, New Mexico 1941, photographs both Est.. $30-50k.

January 26, 2006

Art Investment Funds?

No time for galleries.. too busy with work.. Went to the Flatiron's newest most hip Restaurant yesterday..Aspen.. in the old Lola space on 22nd street/5th ave.. Pretty cool..tres chic (how couldn't it be if MAO was there!).. But, they had 3 Huge Clear Lucite Bucks mounted over the bar.. they reminded me of the work of one over-hyped Bellwether Gallery artist Marc Swanson.

Going to see The Pajama Game tonight with the rents.. Not a huge Bway queen fan.. but at least I'll get to see Harry Connick Jr, Woof! in bed!

So, Art Investment Funds?? Flash in the Pan? Great Investments? All Hype..?? or just All Hat and No Cattle??

I saw an interesting story this morning on Bloomberg News by Deepak Gopinath.Download ArtInvstFund_Bloom060125.txt . It's interesting to see the financial press covering the art market with such frequency.

Philliphoffman_1 It's the second story in 10 days on Bloomberg about Philip Hoffman and his Art Investment Fund.

Philip is one of the only Art Funds to get off the ground and is actually trading art for a profit. I think the only other one is Fernwod Art Investments. Interestingly, He refuses to say how big (or in other words it's way tiny!), or what he's purchased (not much..one painting by Ed Ruscha, pictured to the left) to date.

But I think these funds are here to stay.  And as they continue to get attention by the press, and build their total return track records. They will start to lure institutional clients and the more Doe-Rae-Mee.

My guess... it just makes the prices of "established institutional quality art" go up further, as more capital comes into the art market looking for investment opportunities.

Note.. Stay tuned.. MAO Readers.. We're now only 6 days away from the Second MAO Art Contest!!! And I promise.. this one will be easy... so easy.... even an Artforum critic will know the answer!!!

January 23, 2006

MAO Art Acquisition - Kota Ezawa

So I told myself when on en-route to Art Basel Miami.. No Impulse Buying!! In fact, I could still hear the prophetic words of Michael Jenkins of Sikkema Jenkins & Co, when she told Dr. Quiz.. "...you're letting him go to Miami without you??  Well... Make sure your husband leaves her credit card at HOME!!!"

        So, as a long time photography collector I've been going to the auctions, fairs, and gallery shows for years.. and just as the super insightful Eric Schneider wrote this weekend.. there's a certain security in buying well known photographs by established artists when you have relevant price history.  As a Wall Street Hustler Professional I tend to be pretty conservative with my art collecting/investing.  So I've been hesitant to add much non established photography to the Img_0701_1aMAO collection.  Well.. there must have been something in the powder Rocco gave me air of South Beach.. Needless to say.. I didn't take my own advice!

Not only did I catch buy something in Miami.. But, I took the quantum leap!!  My first ever non-photographic artwork by a young artist arrived last week, from the abnormally (for an art dealer) friendly people  at Haines Gallery in SF.

Well.. Luckily... I actually liked it!! Even Dr. Quiz approved, a truly rare event in MAO art collecting history!

So.. it's not a photograph.. well. It's actually derived from a photograph.. it's a slide on a light-box. (see photo #1)

John and Yoko, by Kota Ezawa after Annie Liebowitz from his History of Photography Remix Show. For those clueless photographically image impaired readers.. This photo was made famous as a RollingStone Magazine Cover.. An image I've always coveted! 

Johnyoko_rollingstone

I hope to post more on Kota Ezawa next week.. Planning a Sunday road trip to Hartford CT...  going to see his current show at the  Wadsworth Atheneum Museum.

What in the world is an Atheneum anyway??? 

So.. road trip, anyone?   We've got room for 2 more, and Dr. Quiz will promise to keep his endless questions to just a few hundred a minimum!

January 22, 2006

The Jackson Pollock Matters Exhibition

   So, imagine going into your now deceased mom & dad's old storage container and finding some gay porn interesting modern art.  Well.. now, think of not just finding interesting art, but, how about discovering several never seen before works by Alberto Giacometti, Calder, Philip Guston, de Kooning, and exactly 32 early Jackson Pollock drip paintings?? All in all, you find about $40 million in what some experts might considered the most important missing links in Modern Art History.  Well, that's exactly what happened to Alex Matter, son of Artist Herbert & Mercedes Matter out in the Hamptons (Wainscott) about 4 years ago. The story is already legendary!

Jacksonpollock_borghi    These amazing works were found wrapped in a brown paper package, labeled in Herbert Matter's distinctive handwriting as

"Pollock (1946-1949), Tudor City (1940-1949), 32 Jackson experimental works (gift + purchase)"

in the family's untouched "Home Sweet Home" storage locker out in Wainscott.   Here's one of the paintings, I found it listed on Artnet.com... "Untitled", is 11.8 x  16 in

There are 2 others posted, so I guess for all you multi-millionaires reading my blog.. they are all for sale.. Contact Mark Borghi Fine Art.. I hear they make great birthday gifts.. Note, MAO is accepting all donations if you don't have any wall space left.

     Hence these 32 small paintings are all thought to be early examples of Pollock's first drip paintings while Jackson boozed it up worked in the Matter's Family studio in Tutor City.   Further adding to their authenticity, were found some 10,000 archived photographs by Alex's father Herbert depicting the Matter family with Lee Krasner, Pollock, and several other notable art figures from their days out in the Hamptons.

  Well... before you go searching through your parents attic this summer looking for gay porn lost art treasure.. you can make the trek out to East Hampton to see an announced show of "Pollock Matters" at Guild Hall.  As reported by this weeks Dan's Papers, On August 11, 2006, the 50th anniversary of Jackson's drunken deadly Springs-Fireplace Road accident, The Pollock Matters exhibit will open.   

      Additionally the Pollock-Krasner House and Study Center in the beautiful Historic East Hampton Springs(Coincidentally, only a few doors down from the MAO Art Center East... better know as the "PupSchwitz Work-Camp" to my BF Dr. Quiz & our friends.. but I'll save that story for another time) will be holding it's own Pollock Show. Their show will include several small drip works from 1943 to 1950.

Vik_pollock_2   Actually, for the 50th anniversary, 2006, it's looking to be an "All Pollock Summer."  For those in NYC not willing to brave the East End attitude summer traffic, The Guggenheim Museum in NYC is also planning a Pollock show, "No Limits, Just Edges: Jackson Pollock Painting on Paper" featuring 60 works on paper. That show opens June 2 and is up till September 29th.

Well.. like any great find in the art world, the Guild Hall "Pollock Matters" show is not without it's bitchy queens detractors.  There's been some debate over the origin of the works.  Mr. Eugene V. Thaw, past president and founder of the Pollock-Krasner Foundation refuses to acknowledge the works authenticity, for what sounds like mostly bullshit, cover his ass, legal liability issues.  There was also a story today in the Sunday Long Island NY Times by Julia C. Mead, that says the show "may open." So I guess it's not officially done yet. But, Oh, and Yes.. MAO was out in EH, at The Pupschwitz Work-Camp, this weekend.. so we only had the LI Sunday NYT Edition!

   The "Pollock Matters" show organized by Mark Bourghi Fine Art, has been Curated by Ellen G. Landau who authored "Jackson Pollock (Abrams 1998)",  and Lee Krasner: A Catalogue Raisonne (Abrams 1995). Ellen G. Landau, who has officially authenticated these early works as Pollock, is also suppose to be authoring a publication for this exhibition to be named "Pollock Matters" published by Harry Abrams.

For more details about this important show, check out this cool website created just for the "Pollock Matters" show. Now it's back to yardwork.. ahhh.. Puplschwitz!

January 20, 2006

Diane Arbus, Lisette Model, Christer Stromholm

MAO - Jan'06 Book of The Month.

And, so sorry for the lack of posts this week.. my other half, Dr. Quiz was away for a long time.. so I've been a very busy boy at the bars breaking hearts, at work and hanging out with big ass time trouble this week.

So..A new B&W photography book was out last month (Dec 15th), but many may have missed it during your busy holiday party schedules.  Clearly, it slipped most MAO friends Christmas shopping lists.. cause we actually had to buy our own copy of the book the other day, but that 5th pair of gloves, and a lovely salad spinner were much appreciated, Thanks!

Arbus, Model, Stromholm is a show catalog from the exhibition at Moderna Museet in Stockholm, published by Steidl Verlag, with essay's by the Museum's Curator of Photography Anna Tellgren.

Img_0613

(Pic # 1- Book cover)

The Show was called

"Autumn in black and white Arbus Model Stromholm" and it

ran from

Oct 1, 2005 until

Jan 15th, 2006.

Arbus2

I've included a few of my favorites photos.

(Pic #2 - Diane Arbus "A young man in curlers at home on West 20th street, NY, NY 1966"  I'm glad to see.. West 20th street has not changed much in 40 years!!)

There's just something about this image.. I luv her!

Diane Arbus was so brilliant!

Model1

I was very familiar with uber popular Diane Arbus (1923-1971), and her New School teacher Lisette Model (1901-1983) work, but the photography of Swedish legend Christer Stromholm (1918-2002) was somewhat new to me.

While he was born and lived most of his life in Stockholm, many of Stromholm's most profound images were taken in Paris and Los Angeles in the 1960's.

(Pic #3 - Lisette Model "Woman with Veil, San Francisco, 1949")

But it's obvious all three's impressive and haunting work in Urban Humanistic Documentary photography are closely linked.

All working roughly at the same time (Model was a bit earlier), they all seemed to focus their photographic eye on the fringes of their society, looking deeply into issues of outsider-ship, and subcultures.

Stromholm1 (Pic #4 Chister Stromholm, "Los Angeles, 1963")

There are many more of Stromholm's images here.

While the book has several interesting quotes from the photographers.. My favorite 2 go to Lisette Model, both said in 1951. Her words are still so profound today.

"New images surround us everywhere. They are invisible only because of sterile routine convention and fear.  To find these images is to dare to see, to be aware of what there is and how it is. The Photographer not only gets information, he gives information about life."

"Speed, the fundamental condition of the activities of our day is the power of photography, indeed the modern art of today, the art of the split second"

I found this a great comparative photographic book, a MAO must have! I only wish the Arbus Estate would have allowed more of her photography in the book.. there are only 3 full plates, and 3 smaller Arbus photographs.

January 18, 2006

It's The Contemporaries... Darling? I almost had to Puke!!

     OK.. So was I the only NYC Museum member to cringe when reading this weekend's NYT story, "Darling, You Look Marvelous in Matisse" by Dana Vachon about the Young Museum Collectors Groups?  Why does the NYC print this crap?

     If the title was not irritating enough, in her article,  Ms. Vachon managed to push every single hate hot button I have when it comes to the show off, elitist, name dropping, look-at-me, want-a-be-self-important NYC art society.  In fact just the ridiculous term "Junior Gala" almost makes me VOMIT.. it sounds like something out of the New Junior Miss Beauty Pageant Circuit.

Nyt_pagent1      Was it really necessary to include the cute little fluffy story about Mr. Hammerstein and his barely legal date? Who cares that this no-body can't satisfy keep a girlfriend, so has four X's at the party?  So, all this story managed to do is reinforce the idea that these museum events are a great place for hungry sex-in-the-city little black dress sporting husband hunters need to attend.

     So, what am I trying to say..??   Ok,  SO  NO !  The staff at MAO was not invited to any of these events in 2005!!  But, like we would want to be caught dead at some fancy schmancy, get all dressed up, party anyway??   And besides... our Black Tie and Tails were still at the consignment shop  cleaners from the last important gala we attended. 

      But seriously, is this really the best idea a museum as amazing as the Met, can come up with to improve young people's interest in the institution.  But the more shocking question remains, why in the world does the New York Times have to waste devote an entire page of the coveted Weekend Art Section to it?  I sincerely hope not!

      Well.. if you still feel the need to belong to the Pomegranate Martini sipping muffy and buffy UES circuit.. and daddy doesn't have a few extra million bucks to donate.. check out these cool events.. sponsored by an independent art interest group.. www.thecontemporaries.org

Thursday January 19th  7pm - ART after Dark @ Dream Lounge with noted art advisory Mary Hoeveler. The Contemporaries is taking over Dream Lounge for a swinging cocktail mixer and conversation with Ms. Marry Hoeveler. Marry is the head of Citigroup’s Art Advisory practice. http://www.mollyguard.com/event/23259570

Monday January 23rd 7pm - Curatorial Tour: Frequency at the Studio Museum in Harlem. The Contemporaries is invited to join the Studio Museum's Contemporary Friends and other young collector groups for a tour of Frequency led by Studio Museum Associate Curator Christine Y. Kim. Please RSVP at RSVP@thecontemporaries.orghttp://www.studiomuseum.org/exhibitions_new.html for more info.

Thursday January 26th 7pm - ART after Dark @ Home of Gracie Mansion, esteemed dealer, collector, and force behind the 80's Neo-Expressionism movement. Ms. Mansion invites members of The Contemporaries into her home for cocktails, a discussion with her artists, and a viewing of her personal collection.  Space is very limited. RSVP@thecontemporaries.org.

        See you there..!!  But bring your own Pomegranate Martini !!  I'll be the one in the old downtown flannel lesbian chic and blue jeans outfit !

January 14, 2006

More Gallery Opening Pics..

As promised.. It was quite a mob scene Thurs Night. First went to the ClampArt Opening of "Bared & Bended:Photographs by Frank Yamrus".. nice show.. Refreshing to see a photographer not printing in GIGANTIC Sizes and with reasonable prices for some interesting work (all photo's of P-TOWN).  Also met well known Photographer.. Nancy Burson at the party.. she was super nice and modest, surprising for a well established artist!

Next stop.. the Openings of the Far West 27th Street (west of 11th..?? yes.. there's roads west of 11th ave! wow.. that was news to me to!!) Like 10 openings..all together.. it's a new elite NYC gallerist club over there.. mostly NADA Art Galleries.. see this weeks TimeOut - Block Party.. and Jan Art & Auction for stories. I had my camera.. so took some quick shots.

Img_0675John Connelly.. looking a bit nervous... guarding.. in front of a new totally FAB AVAF installation (I think we need to get one of these AVAF wallpaper pieces soon for the MAO collection...)


Img_0678
















Loved this work at Wallspace..  by Kirsten Sloltmann.. Sadly.. One of the first times I've seen a decent bottle of red wine at a gallery opening!










Img_0679There was a primo scene both inside and out at the Uber sexy popular Oliver Kamm Gallery!

Also..briefly spotted Edward W.. looking around..probably looking a bit more at the new construction than the art..

Ran into the ever stylish  Gen-Ex Blog Master Tony R..drooling over some of the boys work's of art  in the gallery.

January 13, 2006

Too Many Art Openings to see!!

Last night.. Too Many Art Openings..Too Many People..Too Much Air Kissing.. Too Many Plastic cups of bad wine.. Too Many queens people with little dogs.. Some fun art, Too little time to see them all.. Way Too Little Sleep...

Here's a few pic's... Some Witty comments, and more pic's to follow once I sober wake catch up...

One picture.. Kind of says it all???

Mcd_mcg1_011206_003

Super crowded opening last night at Crime Cheim & Read, McDermott & McGough "A true Story Based on Lies"

I actually Liked this work.. will go back to see again..

Mcdermott_011206_004

Either McDermott or McGough.. Not sure.. but he was signing their new books.. couldn't even get close to him!

Schnable_011206_002 Julien Schnabel...SOME...

January 11, 2006

NYC & The Art Market Set to Crash??

Rocket_takeoff NO WAY!!

But, I have to admit... As I've watched the prices of Modern Art continue to sky rocket appreciate every year... At every auction I attend with my paddle in the air in the back of my mind, I'm always thinking.. DOPE Someday it's all going to come crashing down, so you better love what you're chasing trying to buy, cause you're getting ripped off never getting your money back!

Artmarketvalues_3 Just like Internet stocks.. can Art values fall again like they did in early 1990's? 

See the roller coaster ride attached color chart, A Big MAO thanks to our super smart friends at Fernwood Art Investments for this cool historic art value chart.

Well.. given the ludicrous, Huge Piles of cash that just got paid out on Wall Street the last few weeks to the lucky, spoiled, greedy NYC bankers, an Art Crash sure isn't going to happen this year.

In a story released on Bloomberg News Today, Download 2005WallStBonuses.txt,  Wall Street firms will pay out a record $21.5 BILLION in bonuses for 2005! For the 174,000 NYC people working for Wall Street firms, the average year end bonus will rise 10% to an all time high of $125,500. More stories are sure to follow.  You can expect to see Hedge Fund Managers like, art buying machine, Steven A Cohen taking home Billions and Billions as well. So what does this mean... ??

My guess.. art prices continue to go up.  The sound of Doe-Rae-Mee $$$$ from Wall Street will continue to rain down upon NYC Real Estate,  Weekend Beach Communities, plus the absolutely "necessary to impress" luxury bling-bling items like Cartier, Botox, Gucci, Big Buxom Blond Second Wives, Fancy cars, AND Expensive Art.  So you can expect to see all these well greased masters of the universe executives rushing out to spend their newly found earned riches.

So, look out Chelsea Gallerinas here they come!! It's probably also not a bad idea for Museum, Foundation, and worthy Charity Fund raising type people to get a move on it.  Start asking for that extra donation, pledge drive, renovation grant, or acquisition fund, so strike while the coffers are full! And Boy are they going to be full!!

January 09, 2006

Contest Winner : Brian Clamp with Andre Kertesz and Philip-Lorca diCorcia

Ok... We have a winner!! Thank you to everyone who took a guess for the contest on-line and through email.
It took a week.. lots of guesses, several hints, and a top NYC Professional Photography Dealer to get a winning answer!  So maybe this was way a bit too hard for our first monthly contest. The next one will be easier.. I promise. 

So, a big congrats to Brain Clamp, he is Almost too nice to be an Art Dealer a friend, Photography Dealer and owner of ClampArt in Chelsea who got it right.  Brian choose a 1 year membership to the WSC ICP - International Center of Photography...great choice!

The First Photo, which seemed to be too more difficult to identify, was by Andre Kertesz, "The Dancing Faun", 1919. Art_quiz1 It was in the National Gallery of Art show that toured the country (catalog) this year which was on display at ICP this fall. It also has gone by another title, "My Brother as a Scherzo", and was on the back cover of the most complete survey book on Kertesz work. Andre Kertesz: His Life and Work by Pierre Borham.  This was one of Kertesz early photographic series from his Hungary period. It's in these early years where he first developed his lighting skills and his mastery of the staged photographic image.

The Second Photo.. which several people guessed got right. Philip-Lorca diCorcia's Mario 1978 Art_quiz1a was published as the first image in his 1978 book by MOMA, with an essay by Peter Galassi.  I think, it's currently on display at MOMA's Photography Galleries.  In the book, Peter talks about how Philip-Lorca diCorcia in his early years developed his detail staged photographic process by using his family, including his brother Mario as subjects.  He first used several Polaroid shots to test, stage, set lighting, and then takes the final images with a tripod for a perfect staged photograph.

So both images are of the artist brothers, both are staged photographs, and are early examples of great photographic artist work as they went on to later refine there lighting and artistic style.  And of course.. they are both images I hope to have someday in the MAO Art collection, all donations accepted.

So, thanks to all.. and good luck on our next monthly MAO Art Contest... Probably Wednesday February 1st.

January 06, 2006

An Evening with Duane Michals & ICP

Last Night Duane Michals gave a very entertaining lecture to the ICP Trustee/Focus members at Pace/MacGill 57th street.Duanem010506_009  Too bad the show closes on Jan 7th.

At 74 years young Duane is still going strong. This Yoda looking photo legend was full of energy, funny stories, and very forthcoming with his views on the state of modern art photography today.

  • 1.Cindy Sherman - So Over rated,
  • 2.Bigger is not better, it's just current fashion and
  • 3. Who wants to look at photo's of empty parking lots, where's the passion.
  • He also discussed his 2 new bodies of work, "The Adventures of Constantine Cavafy" and his first ever color art work "Ukiyo-e:Pictures from the Floating world."  Both works I found wonderful.

    It's interesting to see an artist who at 74, after working in B&W for some 30+ years, is now using color for the fist time. Duane, like what were you waiting for???

    January 05, 2006

    25 Peaces - An Art Controversy

    You might expect to see this on FOX News!! But in Europe, The land of Nude Beaches??

    The BBC reported the other day of a public outrage over an Austrian Public Art project.  Starting on Dec 27th, the project called 25 Peaces included 150 Roadside Billboards by artists celebrating 60 years of the Austrian Republic, and 10 years as members of the EU.  (one Additional Story from Spiegel)

    Needless to say... The EU has it's own version of Archie Bunker "Jesse Helms", Austria's right-wing Freedom Party Heinz-Christian Strache, who's obtuse strong objections have unwittingly just catapulted helped the careers of 2 artists into the public eye.  It sounds like some public tax payer money, 500,000 Euro, was spent on this project.  It's the political Holy Trinity.. sex, art and tax money... a right-wing lightning rod!

    Spanish Artist Carlos Aires Produced this poster!

    A 25peace_3someBillboard showing Queen Elizabeth II, George Bush, and Jacques Chirac  masked participants partaking in a little menage-a-trois. Hmmm.. is that our bush on top? No?

    25peace_panties The second Artist is Tonja Ostojic from Serbia (who?).  Her Billboard shows a topless woman wearing a pair of Euro Blue panties sporting the EU Flag's golden star circle insignia in a highly suggestive location.

    Both are provocative statements of the success of the EU, and a european view of The UK and US.   I the guess such roadside hanky panky may be just a bit too much for the dull conservative Austrian public.. Both Vienna Sandwich Billboards are to be taken down. Too Bad...I thought it might actually get those Austrian AutoBahn drivers to slow down for once!

    25peace_road2

           But you just have to wonder.. does narrow minded political attention still bring the doe-rae-mee, bling  notoriety artists like Andreas Serrano, Chris Ofili, and Mapplethorpe received?  Are the careers of artists Carlos Aires, and Tonja Ostojic going to rise significantly worldwide from this???  Or has the Modern Art world become fat, dumb & happy, comfortably numb less sensitive to the joy of a good old fashion Conservative Backlash?

    January 03, 2006

    The 1st MAO Art Contest

    Quiz1_pic1Happy 2006 Everyone! So now that my tequila hangover has finally past.. thank you Jeff for hosting a great New Years Eve party!!  As promised..The MAO Art Quiz.

    Which Photographers created each of these images, provide their titles, and what do the 2 photos have most specifically in common ?

    Quiz Photo #1

    Quiz1_pic2Quiz Photo #2

    This may be too easy or way too hard.. But it's our first quiz...and I'm not sure if anyone "in the know" is reading this..

    Since as a New Yorker... I'm almost embarrassed to see only one NY Art Museum on this 2004 top 10 list of Museums in Annual Memberships........

    The 1st person to answer the MAO Quiz correctly will WIN a 1 Year Basic Membership to an Art Museum of their Choice..Good Luck!

    Oh.. Only 1 guess per person.. and My Better Half... Dr. Quiz, as always will serve as judge and jury if there's any question as to the lucky winner.  If you'd like to guess in private..please send your answer to ModernArtObsession@yahoo.com

    FYI.. East Coast readers.... you have a 3 hour head-start for the quiz on all those 124,166 San Francisco Museum of Modern Art Members... Like do that many people even live in San Francisco??