« September 2006 | Main | November 2006 »

16 posts from October 2006

October 31, 2006

Happy Halloween Art Photo's

Happy Halloween Everyone!

Everyone has those indelible images which come to mind whenever you hear the words Halloween and Masks..

Here are the 5 haunting images, stuck in my twisted art crazed mind I always remember. Enjoy!

October 27, 2006

Madison Square With Chuck Close, Mitch Epstein, and Dayanita Singh

There's a Photography project on display for a few more weeks, Cities In Transition at Madison Square Park. Billboard sized photos from Chuck Close, Mitch Esptein and Dayanita Singh are on display. The project focus is documenting the changing faces of American city life.

Cities_in_transition_chuck_close

New York (Chuck Close), Boston (Mitch Epstein) and Hartford, CT (Dayanita Singh) are the three focus cites.

(Photo # 1 & 2 by Chuck Close )

This
view of the Chuck Close portraits
was taken from
in
front
of the Flatiron
Building
.

Others are along the
Cities_in_transition_chuck_close_3Broadway and 23rd street
side
of the
park.

Work by Mitch Epstein & Dayanita Singh are inside.

It's been said before.. the park is now amazing. Madison Square has been transformed from a crime ridden vagrant filled urban blight to a cool oasis in just a few years.

Now, you can see posh/chic young art dealers like the girls at DCKT sipping Long Island Ice Teas at lunch on the parks Shake Shack Webcam

October 26, 2006

Chelsea Gallery Walk - Last Sat Night

So being super busy last week, Dr. Quiz & I hadn't a chance to spend "Quality" time together. So last Sat night, I dragged her ass to a few dozen art openings in Chelsea.  She hates these things, mostly due to the crowds of pretentious people, and of course, the serving of really bad wine is always unsettling.  Plus Dr. Quiz is never fond of the amazing art work I bring home.. so you can image touring the random sea of crap new art in Chelsea... Yes.. she's such a princess harsh critic.. let's just say, Dr. Quiz had a face like she was going to a funeral.  Surprisingly we did manage to see two shows which past the Dr. Quiz sniff quality test.. so you may like them too...

Stop #1 : Postmasters Gallery - "The War in Iraq" new paintings by Steve Mumford.
Steve_mumford_at_postmasters_1Some of you may already know the work of Steve Mumford.

from either the Greater NY show at PS 1 last year, or his water color book.

Baghdad Journal. I blogged about it last year as an Art Book Pick of the Month.

Most certainly this artist is well trenched in the school of Photorealism, but these paintings take the typical Chuck Close portrait, Charles Bell, pinball machines, Ralph Goings, dinette counter tops, or Richard Estes street scenes a bit further. These hyper-realist works look much like an action packed photo journalistic essay than a photo-realist still life.

It's all very refreshing..possibly even a new direction in painting. Well worth checking out. This was our favorite from the show (Photo #1, Duel, 2005, oil on linen, 48 x 48 inches ). Just to wet your whistle.. Here's an artist quote from the press release..

These paintings are based on experiences and impressions from 11 months in Iraq. I went there four times, from April 2003 to October 2004, spending about half of my time embedded with various US military units throughout Baghdad and the Sunni Triangle. I also got to know many Iraqi artists in Baghdad, who I hung out with on each trip.

I was drawing and painting in watercolor throughout these trips, but looking for compositions for oil painting that might go beyond simply recording daily life and tasks. I wanted to distill something essential about the drama of war, beyond right and wrong.

These aren't anti-war paintings. They aren't political. I'm not trying to address the morality of war, or George Bush's foreign policy agenda. I went to Iraq because I wanted to know what being in a war zone was like, and paint about it from my own subjective experience. The events in the paintings are either things I saw or things that happened nearby.

-Steve Mumford

The show is up till December 2nd.

So, we made several other stops Sat night.. Sikkema Jenkins & Co, Roebling Hall,and Nicole Klagsbrun... Their new shows are all somewhat dull boring sadly unimpressive, not the norm for any of these galleries.. The only other pleasant surprise of the night was :

Stop #2 : The Lehmanm Maupin Gallery - Jennifer Steinkamp, Digital Animation.

After seeing this one.. we both realized.. this is the future of video art.. very impressive, and most certainly cutting edge Digital Video Art. Check out Jennifer's website!
I took this photo in the gallery main room.. .It doesn't do the work justice.
Jennifer_steinkampBut, the picture is of "The wreck of the Dumaru."

It's huge!! With digital water and waves..crashing together.. lots of psychedelic colors.. as you can see.

All I could think.. Dude.. this would be even more amazing if I was stoned very trippy. How did the artist ever think of and make this??

Apparently, this work references her great uncle who became delirious and died at sea during World War I.

There's additional work in the back gallery.. also digital projections.. very creative! The show is up till November 25th.

It's cool and filled with those gee whiz moments, not easy to come by in Chelsea today..So go check it out for yourself. It might have even changed the Dr. Quiz funeral face to a brief smile, and that's no easy feat!

October 25, 2006

Philanthropy In America - The Arts Get Short Changed! Big Time!

Well.. if you  haven't seen the bad news yet.. it's pretty sad. Today, according to The Chronicle of Philanthropy, for 2005, Arts organizations, as part of The Philanthropy 400, came up very short this year. Private Arts donations were down over 10% in 2005, while the largest charities overall, saw donations rise 13%. Ouch!

Well... at least religious groups were up an insane 24.2%, Praise The Lord..and pass the collection plate!! Yikes! Dr. Quiz..Is it too late for us to move to Canada?? How depressing.

Here are the sad numbers :

Philanthropy_in_america2005_2

Granted these arts numbers are a bit depressed by all the Katrina & Tsunami Relief money, so they may not be all that grim. Thank you G. W. Bush!! So arts supporters, before you get out the arsenic checkbook, here are more details.. check out today's posting on The Chronicle of Philanthropy

In case you were wondering here are the top 5..

  1. MOMA --------------------------------------------------- 239.2 Million
  2. Houston's Museum of Fine Arts  --------------------- 210.2 Million
  3. Smithsonian Intuitions in Washington -------------- 163.7 Million
  4. The Metropolitan Museum of Art NYC ---------------  96.4 Million
  5. American Museum of Natural History ----------------- 84.4 Million

Wow.. only $239.2 Million (MOMA), and $96.4 Million (MET).. so it's obvious why these greedy people they needed to raise their admission price to $20 per person. Well.. Here's a very delusional positive story from Bloomberg news by Patrick Cole with some more grim details.

Download Arts_Giving2005_bloombergNews.txt

October 23, 2006

Going The Long (or Wrong) Way to Brooklyn - Annie Leibovitz

By Now..everyone knows about the new "Annie Leibovitz : A Photographer's Life" show at The Brooklyn Museum.

Sadly, Dr. Quiz, Dutch, Hobbit and I all missed a hot young uptown party & the big 27th street west Gallery Openings to attend a "special" opening this Friday Night. You can read the reviews for yourself..

  1. Roberta Smith in the NYT
  2. Janny Scott preview in the NYT
  3. Deepti Hajela of the Canadian Press
  4. The Associated Press in the International Herald Tribune
  5. Blogger NewYorkology
  6. Wendy Zarganis on Brooklyn and Peter Marshall on Photography both at About.com
  7. Michele Norris of NPR.org
  8. Even CNN ran a review of the Leibovitz Show

Annieleib_demi_moore We all found the show a total bore. It's impressive all these reviewers were even able to find something nice to say. The show proves one thing.. there's a reason why Annie Leibovitz is known as a celebrity portrait artist.. because that's what she does best!  Actually her inclusion of tons of  "personal photo's" of friends and family while cute, and tragic at times, all fall very simple and flat in this show.  These numerous unremarkable images added little to nothing, and are more of a distraction to some of the stronger celebrity portraits.  There are almost no images which show the photographer's interaction with these "Personal Photo's" leaving a cold disconnect. Even after reading the short text in the book, and at the show.. you gain little in site into the Leibovitz/Sontag relationship.  We all felt, presenting these photos along side her commercial work added almost nothing to the show. (FYI, Annie's 2001 photo of the George W. Bush cabinet is amazing....which almost makes the trip to Brooklyn worth the trek.. but not quite!)

In total the show is as painful, as your next door neighbor taking hours to show you tons of slides from their last family vacation. Only in this case it's Annie, her girlfriend Susan Sontag, their children, and her dying father. But what really screams of mediocrity are her huge tacky billboard size landscape/nature photos.  It proves, bigger is not better, and they completely waste occupy one of the largest rooms in the museum.  For us, all of these photo's said nothing other than.. "There are several reasons why Annie Leibovitz is not, and never will be well recognized as a Landscape, Nature or Social/Biographical Art photographer..... "

The show is up in Brooklyn till January, and then it travels to San Diego, Atlanta, DC, San Fran, Paris and even London. Wow!!! Now that's a lot of mileage for so little. I'm not sure if it was even worth the subway ride across the east river.

Also, if you need a few extra dozen pounds of useless paper art book, there is a new giant sized book to rationalize document the show. Look for it on sale at Costco, and I'm not sure who's getting the copy I have for Christmas yet.. but, let me know if you have a mother-in-law and need a big gift??

October 20, 2006

Candida Hofer Mania!!!

OK.. now while there were many shocking prices paid at this weeks NYC Photography Auctions.

This Lot at Phillips on Thursday Nights Food Fight Auction certainly needs to be put in the "What in the World are these CRAZY people thinking!!" category.

This 2004 photo by Candida Hofer, Handelingenkamer Tweede Kamer der Staten-Generaal Den Haag III, 2004, Color Coupler print, 59 1/4 by 47 1/4 inches, Signed in ink on the label, with typed title, date, and numbered 6 of and edition of 6.  Sold for a total insane cost of $90,000.

Candida_hoffer_handelingenkamer

Why?

What am I missing??

October 19, 2006

Lisa Hunter Interview Part 4....

Thanks, we never knew we had so many friends! Who would have guessed, since writing there was consideration to giving away the less expensive works in the MAO family art collection, our mailbox has been filled with emails from forgotten old and some new "Enterprising Friends" looking for handouts.  Well, thanks for all the dinner invites.. but, FYI.. these were meant as illustrative questions, just to provide helpful information from Lisa Hunter to the many art collecting readers....

MAO Question #5 :   So you've built an art collection which you are very proud of, it’s all on display or in storage in your home. Together it has a value way over the home owners insurance policy.  You can’t image a low-end home burglar ever stealing an art work… they’d probably take a TV or Buffy's jewelry first. So, do you need insurance? Is it a necessary evil… or a waste of money? What do most big collectors and institutions do? How much should this typically cost?

Lisa Hunter Answer : Why do you assume a “low-end home burglar” is the only person who’d steal your art? Have you never seen the movie Diary of a Mad Housewife, where an expensive objet d’art is pilfered at a Central Park West party by “Whats-his-name Who Won the Pulitzer Prize”?

The bigger risk, though, is damage. I used to live next door to the 72nd Street building that was hit by an airplane this week, so maybe I’m especially aware of fire right now. I also had a valuable oriental rug seriously damaged by a burst pipe once when I was on vacation – the rug stayed wet too long and started to rot. I think it’s nuts not to insure valuable art, but I admittedly have a very risk-averse personality.

Some people are comfortable with risk. A serious antiques collector I know doesn’t insure his furniture because, over enough years, the premiums would be higher than the replacement costs. Me, I’d be insane with worry if I owned an uninsured Townsend & Goddard. So I suppose the decision depends as much on personality as on actual costs. (Museums, however, are required to insure.)

The cost of specialized art insurance depends, of course, on what you own. If you’re concerned about high premiums, perhaps you could lend some of the art in storage to a museum or university, which would then be responsible for the insurance on those items.

Whatever you decide, be sure to keep precise records of your art collection, including photos of each piece. It’s a good idea to store this documentation somewhere other than were the art is, for obvious airplane-flying-into-building reasons.

And let me get on a soapbox here for a moment: If you’re fortunate enough to own important art, you have a moral obligation to preserve it for future generations. If it gets damaged, you need to shell out for top-quality restoration, whether insurance is reimbursing you or not. No cutting corners.

Okay. Now I’ll get down from my soapbox and go back to fantasizing that one of the photos you’re tired of and want to give away is Nan Goldin’s Trixie. (A girl can dream, can’t she?)

So Lisa..Thanks so much for all the great advice! Can't want to meet you at your NYC book signing.. The Intrepid Art Collector

Thursday, October 26
7:30 pm
Barnes & Noble
396 Avenue of the Americas at 8th Street (Greenwich Village)

And Sorry, But, If Dr. Quiz has anything to say about it, and she seems to always have way too much to say about everything, there's no chance Trixie will ever leave the MAO loft without a fight or a divorce settlement...

October 18, 2006

Good Will Art Hunting... Advice From Lisa Hunter Part 3

Freeadvice_1 So now that we're all filling out our Maidstone Club membership applications.. Here's some more helpful advice from The Intrepid Art Collector.

MAO Question #3: A gallery owner whom I’m friends with has offered to get any work from other dealers I’d want. Is it best to work with only one dealer and have them buy the work for me.. or should I go directly to the dealers who represent the artists? Does this end up costing us more or less?

Lisa Hunter Answer : Cost isn’t – or shouldn’t be – the main issue here. The best thing an ambitious collector can do is forge a relationship with a good dealer. Dealers sell more than art -- they also sell their expertise, reputation, their connections, and their "eye." If this dealer has access to work you can't get yourself, then it's worth paying a premium.

Many buyers seem to resent the dealer’s commission, but I think it’s sort of like paying an attorney to review a contract. You want the person’s years of expertise. Why shouldn’t you be willing to pay for it?

MAO Question #4 : When I first started collecting I had a very limited art budget... so I bought some works I liked; they are nice, but very inexpensive, more common pieces.  Like photo prints that were in editions of 500 or more.  I've since increased my art collecting budget, and now I'm running out of money wall space.  I don’t need the cash, but it seems silly to pay for storage for these inexpensive works.  Even though I still like them, I was thinking of selling some just to make room. What do you suggest I do with these?  What are the best places to sell them, donate them to, or should I just give or lend them to friends?

Lisa Hunter Answer : The definition of a "collector" -- as opposed to a mere buyer -- is someone who keeps acquiring even after all the wall space is full. If you still like the pieces, maybe you should consider rotating them. Install shallow shelves and prop your photos there for an ever-changing display. (From a conservation standpoint, it’s probably good for photos to spend some time in dark storage anyway.) You could also store them in old-fashioned portfolios that you and your guests can flip through – not everything has to be on the walls.

If you’re determined to sell, most auction houses have divisions for less-expensive works. You could also approach the dealer who sold the prints to you to see if he/she wants to buy them back or sell them on consignment.

If you decide to donate the prints, I’d recommend offering them to a charity auction rather than a museum; a museum probably won’t be interested in inexpensive multiples.

And if you decide to give them to friends, I’ll send you my address! J

October 17, 2006

Are things about to "Slow" in the Contemporary Art World?

David_wojnaowicz_buffalo Here's a review of the recent London Contemporary Art Auctions by Lina Sandler at Bloomberg News.

It sounds like these auctions didn't go very well, work by Neo Rauch went unsold, GASP! And works by Bill Viola and Martin Kippenberger sold BELOW their pre-sale estimates. OUCH! (Photo by David Wojnarowicz)

Here's the full story :

Download Fall06_LondonContemporarySales.txt

Today starts all the big Fall NYC Photography sales.. And while there are no lots expected to break last springs REFCO auction and the shocking $2.9 Million Steichen photo records. There are tons of high priced works going onto the auction block this week. We'll see how they go.

October 16, 2006

Art Hunting at the Maidstone Club

So now that we've all changed our last names to Guggenheim and Whitney just to get into the great galleries and country clubs..Themaidstoneclub ...It's time for more helpful advice from Lisa Hunter!!

MAO Art Collecting Question #2Every time Muffy & I go to the Maidstone Country Club in East Hampton (I wish!!), our next door neighbors, Prescott and Bittzy, keep bragging about how great their smart Art Consultant is and what great access they have to all the best galleries. She gets them first pick of every hot artists work... My wife, Muffy, has a masters degree in Art History, we think we know a lot about the art world, cause we read Artforum weakly, and have just begun to build a small but "very high quality" collection.  Do you think we should use an Art Consultant?  I've met some art consultants that were totally nuts and clueless. What should Muffy & I expect to pay a consultant? Should we use our friend Bittzy's consultant, and if not.. how do we find a better good one?

Lisa Hunter Answer :  If you know about art and have a high-quality collection, you’re probably doing fine on your own. You only need an art consultant if you a) don’t feel you know enough to choose art on your own, or b) don’t have the “in” to buy the work you want. (And if you’re teeing off at Maidstone, you’re probably pretty well connected already.)

Fees and reputations vary widely. “Art consultant” is a catch-all title that might mean someone who advises David Rockefeller, or someone who helps you pick out a couch-matching acrylic monstrosity at a department store. Ask collectors whose art you admire for referrals. You also want to make sure a consultant can get you the specific artists you crave, because even someone well-connected might not have an “in” with every important dealer. Just as at the Maidstone CC, the art world has cliques, rivalries, ex-lovers who refuse to be in the same room together, etc.

By the way, if you’re buying something other than white-hot contemporary art, dealers themselves will often serve as your art advisor. If they know what you like – and you’re a good client -- they’ll seek out pieces for your collection. For a commission, they’ll even vet art at auction houses for you, and bid on it in the showroom. Museums ask dealers to do this for them all the time. There’s no reason why an individual collector shouldn’t do the same, assuming you need an expert opinion and can afford the commission.

In a strange coincidence, since Lisa & I wrote this Q & A last week... The New York Times ran a much more dull  lengthly article by Mia Fineman this Sunday about just this Art Consultant topic. I guess as they say.. great minds write and read blogs think a like.. but here's the story.. So Check it out.

Oh.. and did I mention Lisa Hunter, has a new great book out??? You can even buy It NOW!  "The Intrepid Art Collector: The Beginner's Guide to Finding, Buying, and Appreciating Art on a Budget"  Right here!

Lisa Hunter Interview Part 3 coming soon! And for those who have no clue about The Maidstone Club..don't worry..you'll never be able to get in it's the most elitist place on the planet.

October 14, 2006

Big Game Hunting - Art Advice From The Intrepid Art Collector

Lucy_the_psychiatrist So.. Today we at MAO introduce our first part of an interview with expert Art Collector and Author Lisa Hunter.. Hey, we figure it's about time something intelligent is posted on this website!! So of course we had to find another blog writer!!

You may already know Lisa Hunter from her great Art Blog - The Intrepid Art Collector. Or you may already have pre-ordered your copy of her amazing new, Must Have Book - The Intrepid Art Collector. So, if you haven't ordered one yet.. there's still time.. I think there's still one or 2 copies left on Amazon...click here to get one while you can! 

Our first MAO help session question.. is a bit near and dear to the Art Obsessed heart.. so it may sound just a little too familiar...Let's just say, We will file this one under.. getting fucked over by looked over by the hot NYC gallery system..

MAO Question #1 :  So there’s this young super hot artist, and you’ve fallen in love with their work.  In your heart, you already know they are the next Andy Warhol. You've saved up the last several months (or even years), enough money to buy one of the artist’s signature works. But the gallery that represents the artist seems to only want to sell the work to Museums, “Important” collectors and Institutions. They don't return your calls or emails, since your last name is not Perlman, Rockefeller, Gund, Kravis or Lauder... What do you suggest the small unknown collector with an obsession a passion do?? Maybe changing our last name to Broad, Tish, Bronfman or Stern would be easier ?

Answer Lisa HunterThis situation stinks for a collector who really loves the work, but the dealer has the artist's best interests at heart. After all, being in the “right” collection is part of what makes the artist “the next Andy Warhol.” For the locked-out collector, there are still a few back doors to try:

For starters, align yourself with an art world power. Most people assume this means hiring a well-connected art consultant, but you could also take an entrepreneurial approach. For example, if you're involved with a contemporary art museum (and you SHOULD be if you plan to collect seriously), approach the curator and ask if they want the artist's work in their collection. If so, you might be able to make a deal whereby you’d purchase the work and let the museum have it on long-term loan. That would satisfy the dealer’s desire to have the work seen and recognized, and you'd get to own it -- although, obviously, you'd rather have it in your living room. (Collectors with deeper pockets sometimes agree to buy a work to donate outright to a museum for every work they’re allowed to buy for themselves.)

You could also pay through the nose when the work finally comes up for auction. Or just wait for the next recession. When the economy tanks, someone is likely to auction “the next Andy Warhol.” I bought things in 1992 I could never afford today – back when the first Andy Warhol was going for a (relative) song.

Stay tuned for Lisa Hunter Interview parts 2 & 3.

In the mean time.. I'll be at the NYC court house.. changing my name.. I'm thinking maybe Mike Perlman sounds like it has a nice ring to it, or maybe Michael Kravis ??....hmmmm....What do you think?

October 13, 2006

Two NYC Art Events Not to Miss This Weekend!

Unfortunately MAO & Dr. Quiz will be very occupied entertaining a house full of people in the Hamptons this weekend.. I know.. It's tough to be me..  but if you're in NYC.. there are two contemporary art happenings not to miss.. and surprise surprise.. NEITHER one is in Manhattan!! OMG!!

A_feininger_underbrooklynbridge_1 1. The 10th Annual Art Under the Bridge Festival in Dumbo. Opens Tonight Friday Oct 13th.. and continues all weekend long. Nearly 300 Artists using various mediums will display their work in galleries, lobbies, loading docks, and sidewalks along Dumbo's cobblestone streets. We think about 200 studios will be open to the public. Galleries will be open, and a collector will not be able to swing a dead cat without hitting an "Up and Coming" artist!  The festival's organizer is the D.U.M.B.O. Art Center.  (Photo by Andreas Feininger)Plus, we think, almost all the events are free too!! Except this one.. which looks pretty cool, but has a "Suggested" donation!

Everything You’ve Always Wanted to Ask a Critic
Moderated by Lilly Wei. Panelists: Stephanie Cash, David Cohen, Alexi Worth and Linda Yablonsky.
Location: d.u.m.b.o. arts center (dac), 30 Washington St., Sunday, Oct. 15, 7:30 pm (suggested contribution: $5)

2. The NYC Art Blog World's Dynamic Duo..have their newest curatorial extravaganza. And Yes...I know extravaganza is a ridiculous word to use for an art show...Anyway..  Together, Bloggy (Barry Hoggard) and James Wagner present "Dangling Between The Real Thing and The Sign In The Window" at the Dam, Stuhltrager Gallery in Williamsburg.

     This show consisting of seven emerging artist promises to be well worth the trip across water this weekend. The artists featured include : Jaishri Abichandani, Ina Diane Archer, Peter Corrie, Susan C. Dessel, Nicolas Garait, Joy Garnett, and Jacques Louis Vidal. The show is up till November 13th,  but the opening party is Tonight from 7pm to 9pm.  This is one art event not to be missed.. especially if you are a NYC Artist or Art Dealer and you want to have your gallery work listed  as a Top Pick on the ArtCal website ever again on the contemporary art cutting edge!

Oh, and don't forget to bring cute boys flowers, we're sure it's been a ton of work putting this show together, so Jim and James will probably need deserve them.

October 12, 2006

A Sign of the Times!

About three weeks ago MAO sent this email to the gallery manager of a way too self important prominent NYC Chelsea Gallery regarding an up coming hot artist show opening...

To: Pompous Self Important Gallery Manager
Subject: Big Hot Artist's Work

Hi Pompous Self Important Gallery Manager,
    I got your invite and poorly written & wordy press release to the up coming BIG Hot Artist show.  It sounds like the new work is great. I've been a long time fan of  both, your wonderful gallery, and Big Hot Artist's work ever since the 2004 Whitney Biennial.  I recently attended the panel discussion you held at your gallery between
Big Hot Artist and  More Modest Hot Artist. I thought they both were very impressive.

     I'm a long time contemporary art collector living in  NYC.  And while I've always loved his work, I've never purchased one yet for my collection.  I was wondering if there is a waiting list for Big Hot Artist's work I could get on or if any of
the large beautiful works from the up coming show are available? If any are available, would it be possible to schedule a time to come by the gallery to view them before the opening next week?

I look forward to meeting and speaking with you.
Sincerely,

MAO

Much to our shock and disgust surprise... two days later this is the foolish mistaken email we received.

To: MAO
Subject: RE: Big Hot Artist's Work

Jim,

  Here is yet another one. If you have trouble getting back to him I can
send it on to Jr. Gallery Flunky.

It's really crazy!

Thanks,

Pompous Self Important Gallery Manager

So.. we wrote back in a very courteous tone, informed her we were not just some random collector but, an important art blogger and suggested this message was probably meant for someone else in the gallery and not MAO, the fucking prospective client.  She barley apologized, and assured me someone might would get back in touch with me ASAP.

Well, as expected, it's three weeks now, no one ever contacted us. We reluctantly attended the opening, it was a shit show insanely packed. Of course the Sunday NY Times wrote a full page, but somewhat lukewarm, review of the show.  We went back to the gallery again last weekend to try to speak to the Pompous Self Important Gallery Manager about the work.  All we got was the nasty vapid gallerina saying "No one was available to help me," she then rudely handed us the same poorly written & wordy press release and suggested we contact her through email. Grrrrr!!

Actually after being treated like I was just some common person so unprofessionally, and looking at the show a second time.. We kind of hated both this way too self important Chelsea gallery, and now the Big Hot Artist as well.  Plus we thought the new work looked flat, thoughtless, tacky and much less inspired than all his earlier work.   The magic was just gone... probably it's all for the best.

It's a 100% true story..Well.. except  we were only joking about the important art blogger comment! So..... What would you have done?

October 06, 2006

October Art Quiz Winner.. Getting "Blown Away" with Post Katrina Art!

With lots of incorrect guesses.. several "who cares" and many "I have now idea cause they all look a like".. we have a winner!

It took the skills of Darin Boville, a W.C. Wrong Coast California based professional photographer to be the first to identify these five differences between these average, predictable, and unremarkable "Art" works..

And FYI...Darin's photography work looks pretty cool too.. so it's well worth checking out his much more creative and thoughtful Katrina Homage.. 2005 - Cat4 Project.

What's more amazing.. First, that these photographers with vastly different background and styles can complete photographic projects that all look the same, and secondly, three of these dull, boring & exploitive works have been shown in big high profile museums.. Jane Fulton Alt's photo was in DePaul University Art Museum in Chicago, Mitch Epstein's photo is currently in the surprisingly cohesive Ecotopia Show at ICP, and the Polidori photo is currently on view since they're giving back all their looted artworks and, as if they had nothing better to display..at the NY Met.  Yikes! Well.. we can only hope these museums didn't spend any money on purchasing these gems for their collections!

Darin has wisely chosen a membership to SF MOMA. Congrat's Darin!

Here are the answers..

Jane Fulton Alt, 

Photo F

Katrina5_1

|

|

Mitch Epstein,

Photo

B Katrina2_1

|

|

|

Chris Jordan,

|

Photo A

|

|

| Katrina1_1

|

|

|

|

|

|

|

|

Robert Polidori,

Photo C Katrina3_1

|

|

|

|

|

|

Stephen Wilkes...

Photo DKatrina4_1

Oh.. and by the way... 

If you've not had enough of all this repetitive and predictable Post Katrina work.. Hmmm.. Like.. how many more pretty pictures of toilets stuck in trees, and flooded out trashed houses does the world really need?

You're in luck..

I guess.. The generally bright visionary people over at my much loved Aperture Foundation have had a temporary brain cramp. Apparently they felt the need to share in all this Katrina art banality..

So Aperture has scheduled a discussion panel for this Wednesday, October 11th at 7pm in the New School, Tishman Auditorium

What's even more shocking.. As if these five "enterprising" individuals were not enough, Aperture has found four more opportunistic creative photographers : Stanley Greene, Paolo Pellegrin, Chang W. Lee, and Katherine Wolk. Who've also completed Post Katrina Photographic Projects.  Anyone else I missed??

We can only hope these artist (and galleries) are donating the proceeds/profits of whatever prints they sell to the Red Cross, or other Post Katrina charities.

October 04, 2006

Photo NY - The Fall Shopping Season

Brianulrich_chicago2003 Well.. if you didn't get your "Fare Share" of art shopping in, at last weekends 212 Art Fair..

Then you're in luck.. this weekend is Photo NY.  And while this fair only has a few major photography dealers..which must explain why I didn't receive a free pass they are having some interesting speakers. Here is the schedule..

FYI.. Sadly, In an effort to squeeze every possible penny out of these events.. you have to pay extra to attend these Lectures and Seminars!! $75 for the Seminars and $10 for each lecture. Well.. I certainly hope these people are getting paid to appear & speak!

Friday, October 6th
10am: Collecting Seminar with Rick Wester (Director of Photography at Phillips Auction House)

Saturday, October 7th
10am: Collecting Seminar with Stephen Perloff (Editor of Photo Review)

Sunday, October 8th
9am: The New Curator seminar

Charlotte Cotton, Head of Cultural Programmes, Art + Commerce
Christiane Paul, Adjunct Curator of New Media Arts at the Whitney Museum of American Art
Brian Wallis, Director of Exhibitions, ICP
Deborah Willis, PhD, Professor of Photography and Imaging, Tisch School of the Arts at (NYU)Moderated by Trudy Wilner Stack (Was the curator at The Center of Creative Photography)

1:30pm: Lecture with David Levinthal (A Big Time Established Art Photographer)
3pm: Lecture with Alex Webb (A Big Deal Photojournalist)

Note : Above Photo by Brian Ulrich, "Chicago, IL" 2003

October 02, 2006

MAO October Art Quiz.. Katrina, Katrina, Katrina!

So if you've turned on a TV for even a few minutes during hurricane season this year.. you were sure to have been bombarded with images of Post Katrina damage.  So too is the NYC art world this month.. Hitting the museums, art galleries, art fairs, and book shelves.. it's all about Katrina!

Which brings us to the question of the month.. can meaningful art be made from exploiting this natural disaster. Is ANY of it any good?  Can you even tell one artist's work from another..?? So how many photographers will try to squeeze a buck out create something meaningful from it?? And Why???

So far we've seen a significant amount of work from these Photographic artists..

  1. Jane Fulton Alt,
  2. Mitch Epstein
  3. Chris Jordan
  4. Robert Polidori
  5. Stephen Wilkes.

Here are some of the less dull interesting (IMO) images from each of their Katrina projects...

  • Photo A
  • Katrina1
  • Photo BKatrina2
  • Photo CKatrina3
  • Photo DKatrina4
  • Photo EKatrina5
  • OK..  Now the BIG Challenge..
  •     Match the photo to the Artist.

Can you do it? There are only 120 different possible guesses.. but only one correct answer..

So the first person to match each photographer with their photo.. wins!

Either a 1 year basic museum membership or a donation to your favorite arts based charity to be given in the winner's honor..Feel free to email your guess to mike@ModernArtObsession.com

Good luck.. and Happy image googling!!

Extra MAO bonus photography genius points..  at least 3 of these images (are currently or) have been in museum shows.. which artists..and name the museum shows??