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8 posts from August 2008

August 29, 2008

A Tsunami of Damien Hirst Art Works....

It's not just a flood of Damien Hirst art works...it's the Katrina of the Art World!

There are several reports out that his art dealers are already choking on having trouble "selectively placing" tons of unsold art works by Damien Hirst.

Plus.. Let us not forget, the famous 100 million dollar folly diamond skull was never sold.

Like lambs (or sheep) to the slaughter, Now, Sotheby's is also holding a 100% Damien Hirst art selling marathon in mid September at their London Offices.

Damien_Hirst_TheBlack_sheep Beautiful Inside My Head Forever, a major auction of works by Damien Hirst, will include an important series of new pieces which have been created over the past two years, including monumental formaldehyde sculptures; paintings which expand on the artist's classic themes such as butterflies, cancer cells and pills; exquisite new cabinets and insightful preparatory drawings.

56 Lots on September 15th at night.

Lots 101 to 180on September 16th in the morning

Lots 201 - 287on September 16th in the afternoon.

(Photo #1, Lot 9, Damien Hirst, 1965 The Black Sheep with The Golden Horn, Executed in 2008, sheep, 18 carat gold, glass, steel, acrylic, silicone and formaldehyde solution, 43 x 64 x 25", price est 2 - 3 Million Pounds Sterling..about $4 million USD)

Sheeps, Sharks, Butterflies, Pills, pok-a-dots..etc.. you name it.. there's at least one or 2 of freshly made Hirst works for sale... so much for scarcity! I guess Damien's army of art "collaborative artists" have been very busy make his art to sell.

If MAO was rich enough to be, stupid enough to be, fortunate enough to be a collector of Damien Hirst works... we would be very worried!  It looks like this auction may become the watershed Big Fall benchmark event for the contemporary art world.

August 23, 2008

Jeremy Kost's photo of Amanda Lepore at the DPA re:Form Charity Auction

We at MAO just love Jeremy Kost's new photo of Amanda Lepore which will be at the DPA re:Form Charity Auction on September 3rd.

The DPA has managed to get quite an impressive list of amazing art donations.  But one that stood out from the pack was Jeremy's boobolicious photo of Amanda Lepore.  Amanda is the self proclaimed Number 1 Transsexual in the world, she is a walking piece of plastic ass performance art.

Amanda de Milo

(Photo #1, Jeremy Kost, "Amanda de Milo", 2008, 33" x 24", injket on paper, edition of 5)

This work, a digital print is made from 3 collaged and enlarged Polaroids,it addresses issues of Objectification, Celebrity, Beauty and Sexuality.  The fabulous print, clearly and suggestively references the 1970's work of Andy Warhol, Robert Mapplethorpe and David Hockney.  Kost lets the viewer get a peek into his underworld of the exclusive and subversive NYC club kid scene.

Much of Jeremy Kost's artwork borders on intense voyeurism. Like Nan Goldin (insider-as-diarist), he documents his nightlife activities, following around the tragic Paris Hilton, and Lindsay Lohan hip celebrities types of the moment trying their best to be fabulous.

Most recently Jeremy has focused his Polaroid camera on steamy hot young hookers, entrepreneurs,would be models beautiful boys. Where he has been deconstructing them into pure objects of beauty and sexuality. Checkout his recent hot hot hot Fawbush edition.

You can also see more of Jeremy Kost's work at his DC gallery Conner Contemporary, and his own artist website.

MAO had a chance to catch up and ask this hot up and coming artist a few questions..

MAO Q : Why photo's of Celebrities? Club kids, Drag Queens, hustlers/boys

JK : Well, I think that they all relate to each other... My work really started with the East Village (tranny, drag queen, go-go boy) work and transcended to Celebrities, Boys, and international work (a la Thailand)... To me they all build subtle narratives without being so direct, and I think they also all speak to different notions of celebrity... the  boys are a little different b/c they speak to ideas of intimacy, vulnerability, and so forth... the series of boys is really inspired quite a bit by Mapplethorpe, Warhol, and Pierson to be honest...

MAO Q : Where did you take this photo? When?

JK : It was in a dressing room at the old Boys Room.. I'd guess about 7 months ago maybe...

MAO Q : Why is it in 3 parts? Is one polaroid not big enough for Amanda?

JK : Well, I had been making these photographs of boys for my "Total Package" edition to coincide with my show at Colette in Paris... I was shooting 6 polaroids (3 from the front and 3 from the back).  When one thinks about plastic surgery, the connotation of cutting and reassembling flesh is fairly apparent...   I titled it "Amanda de Milo" b/c for some reason, well, I thought the posture reminded me of Venus in a very twisted downtown NYC way

MAO Q : How does this work fit into your body of work?

JK : It sort of ties a few different things together.... Amanda is well represented in my "downtown NYC work" for sure... how could she not be?  As I continue the development of these Hockney and Mapplethorpe inspired collage works, which are scanned and then printed much larger as inkjet on paper prints, currently in an edition of 5... as they get MUCH larger, I think the edition size will decrease significantly.

Amanda de Milo!! What an exciting artwork for the Drug Policy Alliance! Thanks Jeremy for the generous donation.

So, If you've not bought your tickets to the DPA's re:FORM art charity auction..get them quick before the event sells out. Go Here to Buy your ticket.

August 22, 2008

Did you know.. AMAZON bought AbeBooks.com ?

So. we're not sure how we missed this story.. but today we found out that our favorite rare book website..got bought by www.AMAZON.com a few weeks ago.

We've used and loved the Victoria, British Columbia based www.abebooks.com for years.

By the way.. ABE stands for "Advanced Book Exchange", which was the initial name of the website.

Thomas_allen_Knockout_06 So it will be interesting to see how the new  monster owner changes the little www.AbeBooks.com.

Here's the story from bloomberg.net

Amazon.com Buys AbeBooks to Offer More Rare Books (Update2)

2008-08-01 20:13:52.340 GMT

By Michael J. Moore

Aug. 1 (Bloomberg) -- Amazon.com Inc., the world's largest Internet retailer, agreed to purchase AbeBooks to expand its selection of rare books.

AbeBooks lists used, rare and out-of-print volumes for independent booksellers, Amazon.com said today in a statement without specifying the value of the transaction. The deal should be completed by the end of 2008, the Seattle-based company said.

Amazon.com, which got its start selling primarily books on the Internet, has been expanding into new areas. It bought online sewing-supplies retailer Fabric.com in June and purchased Audible Inc., which sells audio versions of books and newspapers, in March. Talk Market, a shopping channel, said Amazon.com made an equity investment in the company in May.

Amazon.com fell 59 cents to $75.75 at 4:10 p.m. in Nasdaq Stock Market composite trading. The shares have fallen 18 percent this year.

For Related News:

Stories about Amazon: AMZN US CN

--Editors: Andrea Snyder, Pete Young

It's been  traggic sad in NYC to see all our favorite small private thoughtful bookshops close..and to see the spread of the huge bland mall-like Barnes and Noble/Starbucks take over.

 (photo by Thomas Allen, Knockout, 2006, 24 x 20, c-print)

Now it's happening on the Internet.


August 21, 2008

Work by Ryan Humphrey at the DPA re:FORM art auction

Work by Ryan Humphrey at the DPA re:FORM art auction.

So we're going to continue to highlight some of the exceptional items artists donated to the DPA's re:FORM art auction on September 3rd at Cheim and Read Gallery.. If you missed our last post on the donation by Andy Diaz Hope..check it out. Don't forget to get your tickets now.. right here!

Ryan_Humphrey_Axe Today's focus is on artist Ryan Humphrey and his cool AX..

You may know his work from the hot hot hot cutting edge DCKT Contemporary Galleryon the Lower East Side.. where Ryan has his next  new solo show opening on September 18th.

Or you couch potatoes may know Ryan from his TV appearance on the Bravo show Top Design (Season 1) last year. Ryan didn't win.. but he certainly added to the reality TV Drama.

Recently Ryan has completed a big commission for The Progressive Corporation (http://art.progressive.com/) where he turned a John Deere riding tractor into a mini big-rig for a campaign.

He's been in a bunch of group shows including Five by Five: Contemporary Artists on Contemporary Art at The Whitney, a Touring group show- "Boys Will be Boys" curated by Shamim Momin http://www.ici-exhibitions.org/archives/boys/boys.htm

Plus, Ryan has had a solo show at the Kemper Museum of Fine Art curated by Elizabeth Dunbar http://www.kemperart.org/exhibits/RyanHumphreyessay06.asp

Here's a few questions we got to ask Ryan about his generous donation. (photo #1, Ryan Humphrey, Ax, 2008, Wood, steel, and enamel, 36 x 7x 1.5")

Q : Tell me a bit about your donation ?

The axe is painted to look like Eddie Van Halen's guitar.  This technique of layering tape and spray paint is a sort of personal folk art that he came up so that he would stand out on stage. 

 I see this technique as being visually symbolic for the will and desire to be outstanding and innovative. I do a couple of objects every year or so with this pattern, the same way Duchamp would release a couple of readymade's every year.

Q : Why did you make this Ax ?

I've done everything from a rotary phone, to a Saarinen chair, to a BMW hood.  I chose the axe for several reasons.  Firstly, guitars are often called axes, secondly I like that it is utilitarian tool that has nothing to do with music but still alludes to a particular lifestyle and thirdly it can be seen as potentially violent. Thousands of law enforcement agents die each year at the hands Marijuana drug cartels in Mexico.  At least if it were legalized it could be regulated.  Think of it as a prop from a Quentin Tarentino film.

Thanks Ryan for such a thoughtful donation.. perfect for DPA! And certainly it's a work of art that any fireman or  ax murderer collector would be proud to have in their collection.

August 19, 2008

Ryan James MacFarland, a young photographer worth checking out

Ryan James MacFarland, a young photographer worth checking out.

Ryan_James_macfarland If you like the work of Ryan McGinley or even 2008 Whitney Biennial star Melanie Schiff, you should take a look at the work of this still wet behind the lens recent NYU graduate.

Ryan James MacFarland has a small solo show up at the tiny emerging  MERGE gallery on west 20th street.

And you can see more of his work on this website.

This 2006 graduate, Ryan James MacFarland, worked briefly for photographer Ryan McGinley, and you can see he learned quite a bit from his boss. His use of light, water and his focus on today's youth culture lifestyle is all somewhat similar to McGinley's.

(Photo #1, Ryan James MacFarland, Suspended, 36 x 24, c-print)

Ryan_James_MacFarland_gaelan2 The works in the show range in size from 36" x 20" to small 8" x 10".. it's nice to see a photographer not caught up in the bigger is better circus. It's also nice to see a young photographer's work priced accordingly.. some of these images start as cheap as $350.

(Photo #2, Ryan James MacFarland, Greece, c-print)

The show, titled, "almost", is at Merge Gallery and is running from July 17 through August 30, 2008.

If you have some time to spend in Chelsea.. it's worth checking out.

August 15, 2008

Doug Keyes photography book, Collective Memory

Doug Keyes, Collective Memory is a must have for all those smart obsessed photobook collectors.  

Doug_keyes_collective_Memorry It just came out a few days ago from Decode Books, and is already selling out. It's a small book, but packs an powerful punch. We just got our copy in the mail yesterday, and it's already one we've gone back to several times. Amazon was already sold out.. but you can get a copy here.

It's Doug's first monograph with an essay by Sheryl Conkelton. Here's the description from Amazon..

Doug Keyes's photographs investigate the ways that knowledge stacks upon itself over time, leaving an impression or "collective memory.' In his first monograph, Collective Doug_Keyes_BecherWaterTowers Memory, Keyes's luminous color images of books literally reveal and sometimes conceal this stacking by capturing through multiple exposure the experience of reading the book. The resulting single image is a condensed document of the experience, the ideas contained within, and the physical identity of the book itself. The books Keyes chooses to photograph from art books and works of fiction, to poetry books and books on scientific theory hold personal meaning or remembrance for him and become sites to revisit. Keyes's photographs in fact make visible the pleasure of leafing through a text and the memory of that experience.

(photo #2, Doug Keyes, Bernd and Hilla Becher Water Towers, dye coupler print)

Doug_Keyes_Donald_Judd_colorist_01 We first saw his work at The Foley Gallery in Chelsea.. but this book project is his best work to date.

(photo #3, Doug Keyes, Donald Judd Colorist, 2001, dye coupler print, 15 x 25")

A must have for any photobook library.

August 12, 2008

Andy Diaz Hope artwork at the DPA re:FORM Charity Auction

Andy Diaz Hope artwork at the Drug Policy Alliance re:FORM art Auction, September 3rd.

Since we at MAO love the DPA, and think the re:FORM event is going to be an ART night not to be missed

(get your tickets here)

We at MAO were going to highlight a few of the amazing and generous artist donations over the next few weeks.

The first one.. is from artist Andy Diaz Hope.

Andy_Diaz_Hope_Fuck_You_Im_A_Model It's a photographic portrait which has been obsessively meticulously encased in small individual drug capsules.

Title : "Fuck you, I'm a Model"  2006
C-prints, U.V. coated gel capsules, artist frame
edition 2/3 size : 15" x 18" x 0.5"

Courtesy of the artist, Catherine Clark Gallery, San Francisco and Schroeder Romero, New York | Estimated retail value: $4,900

Here's a brief description from the artist :

The photo was taken on Nov. 1st, 2005.  The woman in the photo was still wearing part of her costume from the night before when she had been Kate Moss, with a baby doll and a big bag of flour representing another less legal substance.  Over the course of the evening, she sprinkled powder over everyone and replied to their protests with "Fuck you. I'm a model!"  Eventually she lost the baby and was seen wandering the party looking for it.

The work is from Andy's "Morning After Series" which is included in the permanent collection of the NY MoMA think BIG MONEY!. The morning after portraits are portraits of people in front of their medicine cabinets or in their local pharmacies with hangovers, migraines, morning sickness and other maladies self-inflicted or bestowed by nature.  The project began as the artists attempt to represent how, through pharmaceutical and recreational  drugs, we have moved beyond merely representing our natural heredity to representing our natural heredity +/- our drug intake used to modify, improve or forget parts of our heredity we're not so fond of.

When MAO asked the artist.. why These "Morning After" Portraits ?

Andy said.. In hindsight, I think the "morning after portraits" began as a  reaction at a time in my life where several close friends had crossed the line in their drug usage and began to have serious problems.  At the same time, a friend suffering from depression went to a psychiatrist to talk about it and instead received a 4 page questionnaire and a prescription for anti-depressants.

Clearly.. the work from this artist is perfect for a DPA charity event.. 

Here's a note from the artist's website :

The series looks behind the mirror to expose the inner workings of our medicine cabinets and our relationship to them as our doctor, psychologist, cosmetician and spiritual healer. It appeals to the viewer’s voyeuristic desire to look inside another’s hidden cabinet of frailties and insecurities. To see another’s vulnerabilities through the medicines they take strips away that person’s invincibility while bolstering one’s own.

We find these portraits thoughtful, powerful, and images with important social context for our time. Andy's work will also be included in the inaugaral exhibition of the Museum of Art and Design in NYC this fall, so we're lucky glad one is already in the MAO family art collection.

Thanks Andy for such a generous donation. 

August 01, 2008

The Life of a successful artist... Jennifer Bartlett

The Life of a successful artist... Jennifer Bartlett

Jennifer-bartlett_house_dots_Hatches We've always loved the work of contemporary artist Jennifer Bartlett. We've written about her several times, Here, and here. (Photo #1, by Jennifer Bartlett, House: Dots, Hatches, 1999, print, 38 x 38")

In today's Wall Street Journal, there was a somewhat revealing story, of how good life can be, when you're a rich over hyped successful contemporary artist.

By living in NYC, and being an active collector, we've been lucky enough to know several artists. Sadly none of the artists we know live this large!

But we wonder, do stories like this totally shatter that image of the starving tortured artist doing everything for the love and devotion of their art work? 

Well...We guess times have been too very good for over hyped successful contemporary artists. Sadly, MAO aka..debbie downer would guess, things are probably not staying this good for most successful artists for much longer. As Bob Dylan once said...The Times.. they are a-changing !

Here's the story that was in the paper...

Artist Bartlett Sells NYC Townhouse for $17 Million 2008-07-30 22:06:24.170 (New York)

By Laura Marcinek

July 30 (Bloomberg) -- Jennifer Bartlett, a realist painter whose work is in the collection of New York's Museum of Modern Art, sold her townhouse in Manhattan's West Village for $17 million, according to public records.

The five-bedroom home at 134 Charles St. has 12,800 square feet of interior space and 2,500 square feet of multilevel gardens and terraces, according to its listing on Sotheby's International Realty's Web site. The house also has an indoor lap pool, wood- burning fireplaces and views of the Hudson River.

Built as a warehouse in 1911, the building is the former residence and art gallery of Walter P. Chrysler Jr., according to Sotheby's. Chrysler, the son of the founder of the Detroit automaker, was an art collector and theater producer and founded Air-Temp, the first manufacturer of automotive air conditioning.

Bartlett bought the building in 1989 and redesigned it into living space, offices and studios, Sotheby's said.

The townhouse was listed in May 2007 for $17.9 million, according to StreetEasy.com, an online real estate listing service. In September 2007 the price was lowered to $17.5 million.

The price was increased in January to $19.5 million.

Roberta Golubock, the Sotheby's broker for the property, would not comment on the sale or the buyer, who was listed as 134 Charles Street LLC. She said the information listed on StreetEasy.com is not related to the listing on Sotheby's Web site.

`Post-Minimalist Style'

Bartlett is a realist painter with a post-minimalist style who is known for her landscapes and interiors. She made her mark in the 1970s along with artists such as Elizabeth Murray, Richard Serra and Chuck Close.

The highest price her work achieved at auction was the $176,000 paid in 1991 for a 1978 wall-sized canvas-and-steel-plate painting titled ``At the Lake,'' sold by collector and art investor Charles Saatchi at Sotheby's in New York.

That work is currently for sale by the buyer, a private collector from Texas, at the New York- and Chicago-based Richard Gray Gallery for $385,000, said gallery director Paul Gray.

Bartlett's work usually sells for $100,000 to $200,000 and her highest private sale was about $500,000, Gray said.

The deed for the townhouse sale was posted today on the New York City Department of Finance Web site. Bartlett was not immediately available for comment, said her assistant, Joan LiPuma.