October 15, 2009

Collecting Photobooks! Story in this Weekends London Financial Times

So MAO's guess is most smart  photo obsessed people missed this great story about collecting important Photobook in this weekends London Financial Times.

Yes.. for those who don't know.. even in these difficult art times.. Collecting Important Photobooks is now super Hot Hot Hot! Actually so hot.. even the newly  opened NY Branch of Bloomsbury Auction House managed to get some serious interest in the photobook part of their recent disastrous photo auction.  Bloomsbury only sold 17.8% of the Photos in their auction, OUCH!...yes..only 35 lots sold out of 197 photo lots..Yikes!  60 of their 95 Photobook lots sold, which was 63.2%. But, you can read more about this Bloomsbury Photographic Auction from the often long winded throughly thoughtful DLK Collection Blog

The FT story interestingly points out, with the publication of the new AMAZING Aperture, must have, Aperture_Japanese_Photobook_reference reference book, Japanese Photobooks of the 1960's and 70's by Ryuichi Kaneko and Ivan Vartanian, rare Japanese Photobook prices have jumped significantly.  It's not a surprise, since most American art collectors don't read Japanese, a detailed reference book like this was very necessary to make collecting Important Japanese photobooks understandable. This reference book along with the power fo the internet (a la Ebay!) make it now economically possible for almost any collector to get involved. (Photo #1, The cover of Aperture's Japanese Photobooks fo the 1960's and 70's)

Note, if you don't know already.. one of THE very best sources for important Japanese photobooks in the world is Harpers Book in East HamptonNY.  Harper has done an impressive amount of research on historic photobooks, but also has an incredible eye, and an inventory so huge, MAO frequently gets taken to the cleaners  lost for hours wondering through his rare photobook selection.

Well.. anyway.. the story in the FT was really great, and well worth a read if you're at all interested in photography or art books. 

So here's the entire story from the Sat October 10th FT... 


Worth a shot

By Claire Holland

Published: October 9 2009 15:14 | Last updated: October 9 2009 15:14

The market for fine photographic prints has exploded over the past decade, yet the photobook (as it has come to be known) was, until recently, relegated to the sidelines by dealers and collectors alike. But as photography has become more valued and collected, photobooks have slowly come to be recognised as desirable (and collectable) in their own right and the market is burgeoning, according to Laura Noble, director of the Diemar Noble Photography Gallery. “In the mid-1990s one could have picked up a first edition of Bill Brandt’s A Night in Londonfor £20”, remembers her co-director Michael Diemar. “A copy of the same book sold recently at Christie’s for £4,800.”

So what has prompted this once-forgotten art form to be brought back into view? As vintage prints have become scarce and contemporary photography prohibitively expensive, photobooks may seem a more accessible and affordable way of collecting photography. The publication of The Photobook: A History by Martin Parr and Gerry Badger and Andrew Roth’s 101 Books (itself now rare and worth around £1,000) helped to ignite the current interest in the genre. For Parr, an obsessive collector who admits to owning tens of thousands of titles, the shift in the market was inevitable. “Photobooks were previously unrecognised and therefore undervalued,” he says.

The history of photography is rooted in books. Until the mid-20th century, photographers were far more likely to see their work between covers than on a gallery wall. Indeed, the first great artistic statement in the medium was grandly presented in book form. Published in 1844, William Henry Fox Talbot’s The Pencil of Nature, made up of 24 original prints, heralded the invention of the calotype – the first negative-positive photography. Many of the 19th-century prints for which collectors and museums are now paying hefty sums come from such albums, which have been broken up.

For many photographers the photobook is a source for photographic ideas – who’s doing what, what’s new – and trends spread rapidly from the US and Europe to Japan and back again.

“For contemporary photographers the photobook is still an important influence,” agrees curator Nina Poppe. When I met her earlier this year at Amsterdam’s Foam photography gallery, she was hanging Marks of Honour, a show of work by 13 photographers who pay homage to a photobook they found inspiring. Among the most compelling in the collection – which will be auctioned in Paris next month – are American photographer Michael Light’s tribute to Ansel Adams’ Yosemite and the Range of Light, in which Light has made precise cutouts following the lines of Adams’ monumental landscapes and inserted his own prints of LA night scenes into the spaces, and Japanese Onaka Koji’s thoughtfully constructed celebration of Daido Moriyama’s Tales of Tohno, which includes five prints and a contact sheet housed in a box handmade by Koji from wood of the forests where Moriyama shot his original 1976 work.

Japanese photobooks distinguish themselves by their attention to detail. The layout, binding, paper, printing, dustwrapper, obi(the bellyband) and the outer case (the so-called soto-bako or okuribako) are all meticulously crafted. After 1960, the photography scene in Japan changed dramatically and the photobook – with its ability to help create a narrative and rhythm – overtook the print as the most popular mode of artistic statement for the Japanese photographer.

This important and prolific period is examined in Japanese Photobooks of the 1960s and ’70s published by the Aperture Foundation next month.

There has been a strong rise in demand for Japanese photobooks, and prices have doubled or tripled in the past three to four years. “Curiously, the Japanese photobook market really didn’t exist until western collectors started to show interest,” says Titus Boeder of Maggs Books. “When I started buying them in Japan eight years ago, prices were lower than the original retail cost. They weren’t collected in Japan.”

Elsewhere, in the US and Europe, the market for good quality photobooks shows little sign of slowing down, with demand particularly high for those inscribed by the artist or an important previous owner. Sven Becker, book specialist at Christie’s, recently auctioned a copy of William Klein’s Tokyothat once belonged to William Eggleston, for a lofty £2750. Signed by Klein, and with Eggleston’s ownership signature dated January 1969, it’s a perfect example of the type of books that are attracting the attention of collectors with discerning tastes and deep pockets.

Prices for similar books reached unprecedented levels earlier this year at New York’s Swann Galleries. A signed copy of Nobuyoshi Araki’s ABCDand a first edition of Ed Ruscha’s Various Small Fires and Milk, inscribed by Ruscha to Andy Warhol, achieved US$10,800 and US$15,600 respectively. This autumn Swann is offering a signed deluxe edition of Lucas Samaras’s Autointerview, Autobiography, Autopolaroid, issued with a Polaroid (estimate $2500-$3500), and a signed first edition of Helmut Newton’s gigantic Sumo, weighing in at nearly 70 pounds and supplied with its own Philippe Starck-designed chrome stand (estimate $5,000-$7,500).

Rare art book specialists Sims Reed recently showed some fine examples at the London Art Book Fair, including a first edition of Hiroshi Sugimoto’s exquisite Time Exposed(£12,000) and John Baldessari’s Fable: A Sentence of Thirteen Parts (£3,500). But it is not necessary to shell out vast sums of money to start building an impressive (and one day possibly quite valuable) library.

Ebay is a thriving market place for rare books and there are bargains to be had. The Photographers’ Gallery regularly promotes limited editions of new titles, often signed by the artist. Nazraeli Press offer very reasonably priced special editions and limited availability titles on their website. Gems include Masao Yamamoto’s A Box of Ku($200) and Joseph Mills’ wonderfully surreal photomontages in The Loves of Poets($250). Photography specialists Schaden offer recommendations, signed copies and a research service.

Parr’s advice is simple: “Buy what you like,” he says. And, if you buy books you genuinely like, it doesn’t matter if they increase in value or not. Good taste is rewarded, and a little knowledge can go a long way in identifying important books. “A few years ago a collector friend of mine went to a flea market in Paris and picked up Man Ray’s Electricité for €50,” says Noble. “The auction value? £20,000.” Who knows, you may just get that lucky.



Swann Galleries’ Photographic Literature sale takes place in New York on October 22 www.swanngalleries.com
Marks of Honour 2008will be auctioned at Pierre Bergé & Associés, Paris, on November 25 and will be on show at the auction house during Paris Photo Festival the preceding week www.marksofhonour.com
Japanese Photobooks of the 1960s and ’70s is published by Aperture in November

October 05, 2009

James Welling Talks at Aperture Foundation.. Tuesday Oct 6th @ 7pm

MAO has never heard James Welling speak in public before, so we have no idea if he's any good, but it should be interesting.

This photographer's abstract art work is among the most innovative in the industry. You probably saw his work which was recently featured in the 2008 Whitney Biennial.

James-welling_flowers (Photo #1, James Welling, Flowers, 2005, c-print, 14 x 10")

Represented in NYC by David Zwirner and in the UK by the Maureen Paley Gallery, James Welling is almost a living legend in the art photography world.. so clearly this is a free talk not to be missed!

It's probably going to be packed.. so get there early!
Here's the Aperture / Parsons press release...

Artist's Talk with James Welling

Tuesday, October 6, 2009
7:00 pm


Aperture Gallery
547 West 27th Street, 4th Floor
New York, New York
(212) 505-5555

Aperture and the Parsons Department of Photography at The New School present an artist's talk with James Welling as part of the ongoing Parsons lecture series. Welling's career constitutes a comprehensive conceptual examination of the many forms of photography: from documentary and staged to nonrepresentational. He was recently featured in the Aperture publication The Edge of Vision: The Rise of Abstraction in Photography.

JAMES WELLING(b. 1951 in Hartford, Connecticut) studied drawing at Carnegie-Mellon University before transferring to the California Institute of the Arts, where he studied video. His work has appeared in over sixty solo and group exhibitions, and is included in many public collections, including those of the Museum of Modern Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and the Whitney Museum of American Art, all in New York, among others. Welling was the recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship and has taught at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Bard College. Since 1995, Welling has lived in Los Angeles, where he is head of the photography department at the University of California, Los Angeles. His work was featured in issue number 190 of Aperture magazine

September 29, 2009

It's Art Benefit Season, So Check Out.. The Photography Center at Woodstock!

The Center for Photography At Woodstock has their 2009 Benefit Gala Honoring W.M. Hunt on Sunday October 11, 2009 in Woodstock. Yes.. MAO knows its too crazy far, hours a bit far away for just a benefit... BUT!!

This has been one of the best places for emerging photography in the UISA, and every year they hold one of the most interesting "think opportunity to buy something very cheap" art photo auctions.

It's a wonderful organization.. and they could use your help in these difficult times! So Please Check it out, you might find something great for your photo collection.



It's quite amazing..  they have photos donated by 80 artists..

Click here to preview and bidon the great auction items.. not all of them are online yet.. but the list is most impressive.

This year's event will honor our 2009 Vision Award HonoreeW.M. Hunt, collector, curator, educator, gallery owner, writer, and emerging artist advocate  and features CPW's 31st annual benefit auction of contemporary and classic photographs beginning at 4pm.

Benefit Gala proceeds directly support the creative programs of the Center for Photography at Woodstock, a not-for-profit arts and educational organization. Please support the arts.

There are Two Tiers of Admission for CPW's 2009 Benefit Gala. To order Tickets or a Catalog, please call CPW at (845-679-9957).

(A) GALA tickets are $100 per person. 
They include attendance the 2009 Vision Awards Wine and Food Reception in honor of our recipient W.M. Hunt, which will begins at 2pm, a complimentary copy of the 2009 Benefit Auction Catalog. Attendees receive preferred seating for the live benefit auction.

GALA Tickets must be purchased in advance, by Thursday October 8, 2009.

(B) To attend the AUCTION only, admission is by purchase of the catalog for $35 ($25 for CPW members) plus postage. 

Doors open at 4pm for Auction attendees. Catalogs may be purchased by phone, and fax orders. Payment may also be sent via mail. Catalogs are currently in production and will be available after September 21.

Benefit Auction
Catalogs may be purchased via phone, fax, email order, in CPW's gallery, and on the day of the sale at the Bearsville Theater.

To order Tickets or a Catalog, please call CPW at (845-679-9957).

September 28, 2009

An Art Event Not to Miss.. The NY Art Book FAIR this Weekend at P.S.1

One of the next best things to looking at Contemporary Art.. is sex is looking at new Contemporary Art Books!


We can't wait for the next 2009 New York Art Book Fair.. cause MAO can never have enough art books.

(Photo #1, Mickey Smith, More Books, 2008, Archival Pigment Print)

FYI.. they moved the fair this year from Phillip's Auction House in Chelsea to Art World Siberia Long Island City at P.S.1

Here are the details

LOCATION   P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center
22-25 Jackson Ave at the intersection of 46th Ave
Long Island City, NY 11101 (map)

Friday/Saturday, October 2 & 3, 2009, 11am - 7pm
Sunday, October 4, 2009, 11am - 5pm
The NY Art Book Fair is FREE and open to the public.

Some of the cool events to see :

Richard Prince Calling All Readers (Books & Posters)
John McWhinnie curates a survey of the books and posters of Richard Prince, from the 70s to today.

2. Great Contemporary Artist book Signings!


Friday, October 2, 2009:
2pm Steven Miller [DECODE]
3pm Joan Lyons [Visual Studies Workshop]
4pm David Benjamin Sherry [Printed Matter]
5pm AA Bronson [Printed Matter]
6pm William E. Jones signs Tearoom[2nd Cannons]

Saturday, October 3, 2009
12pm Sherin Neshat [MUSAC]
1pm Peter Sutherland [Gottlund Verlag]
2pm Ariana Page Russell [DECODE]
3pm Brad Buckley/John Conomos [NSCAD]
4pm Vince Aletti [DAP]
5pm Ryan McGinley [Morel]
6pm Gregg Bordowitz [Printed Matter]

Sunday, October 4, 2009
2pm Sarah Morris [Witte de With]

3. The ClassRoom
The Classroom is a full-schedule of informal artist talks, performative lectures, and other lessons of impromptu spirit with free, continuous enrollment for all fair-goers. The faculty includes: Center for Book Arts, Dexter Sinister, Fillip, free103point9 with Brett Ian Balogh and Tarikh Korula, Friends of the Fine Arts (FFARTS), Jason Fulford, Rick Myers, Michalis Pichler, Red 76, Carson Salter, Jennifer Sullivan, Three Star Books with Haim Steinbach, Triple Canopy, Ugly Duckling Press, Western Exhibitions with Miller & Shellabarger, and others. The Classroom is curated by David Senior, Museum of Modern Art Library.

4. If you feel the need to Party like an rock star on Thursday Night.. and get a limited edition work of art.... there's something for you too!

Following the, PREVIEW: The Fair opens for preview October 1, 6-8 PM at P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center.

Deitch Studios, Long Island City, will generously host a benefit for Printed Matter, featuring industrial punk-and-dub duo, I.U.D.(Lizzi Bougatsos of Gang Gang Dance and Sadie Laska of Growing). DJs Tim Lokiec and Gary Murphyplay vintage house. Tickets begin at $20 and include limited artist editions by Elmgreen & Dragset, Jutta Koether, Tom Sachs, and Mungo Thomson.


Deitch Studios, 4-40 44th Drive, Long Island City

$20 - benefit plus ticket edition by Tom Sachs, edition of 450.
Available here
$150 - benefit plusedition by Jutta Koether, signed and numbered edition of 150.
Available here
$150 - benefit plusedition by Mungo Thomson, signed and numbered edition of 150.
Available here
$3,000 - benefit plusportfolio of 26 prints by Elmgreen & Dragset, signed and numbered edition of 26.
Available here 

OK... see you all at the FAIR!

September 18, 2009

Melanie Schiff, A Young Rising Art Photography Star, her New Show Opens!

Melanie Schiff... A Young Rising Art Photography Star's new show opens in Chicago.

So.. check this artist's new work out! She truly paints with light like no other young new photographer.

As you all probably know, MAO got to meet this young photographer about 3 years ago, when she had just graduated from Art School and was having her very first gallery show. As a contemporary art collector one of the greatest joys is getting the opportunity to watch a new young artist's career take off.

Her credits already including shows at the Chicago MCA, and the 2008 Whitney Biennial,

Melanie has a new body of work now opening up in Chicago at the Kavi Gupta gallery. (Photo #1, Melanie Schiff, Light Pipe,2009,digital c-print mounted and framed,31 1/2" x 35" framed,edition of 5)


Solo Exhibition
The Miror,
Kavi Gupta
, Chicago, IL

September 11 - October 24, 2009

Plus, here's just a recent list of things "happening" for Melanie.. in the near future.

Elements of Photography
Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, IL
June 13 - October 4, 2009

Between Spaces
October 21 - Winter 2009

Solo Exhibition
Santa Barbara Contemporary Arts Forum, Santa Barbara, CA
Spring 2010

Seattle Museum of Art, Seattle, WA
May - Sept. 2010

2010 Chinati Foundation Artist in Residence, Marfa, TX 


(Photo #2, Melanie Schiff, The Mirror,digital c-print mounted and framed, 2009,17” x 13 3/4” image; 30 1/2” x 34” framed
Edition of 5 with 1 AP)

And now, after her last NYC gallery crashed and burned closed during the Great Art Recession of 2008, Melanie has a hot new NY Art Gallery representing her. 

Horton & Liu Gallery, who? C. Sean Horton's new Chelsea expansion of his hot cutting edge L.E.S. Sunday Gallery is now representing Melanie Schiff in NYC. Yes..my little MAO-ettes, SOME contemporary art galleries are actually expanding into Chelsea!!  They will be having Melanie's first NYC gallery show debut in mid-October..

Melanie Schiff :

Mirror & Mastodon : Oct 15 – Nov 14, 2009

In fact they've already put out the press release..!!

Horton & Liu is pleased to present a new series of photographs by Los Angeles-based artist Melanie Schiff. Mirror & Mastodon is the artist’s New York solo debut and the artist's first major exhibition since her inclusion in the 2008 Whitney Biennial. The exhibition also coincides with her inclusion in Between Spaces at PS1 / MOMA.... read more here..

Amazing...and Congrat's to Melanie Schiff, we can't wait to see your photo work on NYC gallery walls!

September 17, 2009

The MAO Art Buy of the Month - Sarah Pickering Print at Aperture!

This one is going too fast already we almost didn't want to post it.

But, if you're a pyrotechnic maniac Sarah Pickering Fan like MAO.. you better act now! Those smart longtime MAO readers know Pickering.. she's a total blast! We've been following her career at MAO for sometime.

In fact, the last time pre-Art Market Crashthere was a benefit print from Sarah Pickering featured as a MAO ART Buy of the Month, the entire edition Blew Out in just 2 days!  

But, for those who don't know this British Bombshell Sarah's work.. check out her website here..

Sarah also has a new think high profile photo monograph coming out from the Aperture Foundation in the Spring 2010. 

Anyway, this smokinprint was just officially posted last week for sale.. and it has already sold out of the first 10 from the edition of only 30 photo prints.

Sarah_Pickering_ARTILLERY Artillery, 2005
edition size: 30 and 5 artist's proofs
Signed and numbered by the artist
image size: 12 x 12 in.
paper size: 14 x 14 in.

Note : The First 10 prints : $550, Nos. 11-20: $700, Nos. 21-30: $850

Right, now the print price is at only $700. So if you like it, you better order this one ASAP

<Click Here> to Buy... or it will be gone.

Or you can email... The Aperture Print Manager..

Kellie McLaughlin [email protected]

Oh.. And be sure to tell them MAO sent you.. cause then they'll give you the MAO special discount treatment.

September 16, 2009

An Important Photography Show Not to Miss... Keizo Kitajima at Amador Gallery

OK.. My little MAO-ettes. For the new hot Fall Art Season, there are a ton of great new gallery shows around NYC.  But for anyone interested in historic B&W or Japanese photography, one show not to overlook is the Keizo Kitajima show which opened last night at the Amador Gallery on 57th street.

Keizo_Kitajima_tokyo_018 The show is a full retrospective of this almost unknown in the US Japanese master's portrait work. MAO was particularly taken to the cleaners by his earliest Tokyo series.

(photo #1, Keizo Kitajima,


12" X 8 1/2" , gelatin silver print edition of 7)

So, now, only 28 years after the renegade days of Image Shop CAMP with Daido Moriyama where rooms became a giant collage with the works enlarged and developed on the walls using sponges and plastic sheeting (per photo #2) Keizo Kitajima finally has a Museum retrospective at the Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Photography in Tokyo,a new 874 page monograph (published by Rate Hole in Japan)  and a full exhibition at the Amador Gallery in New York.

Kitajima_TOKYO-060 Keizo Kitajima

The Joy of Portraits

September 15 - November 7th

Amador Gallery at The Fuller Building - 41 East 57th street, 6th floor

In 1976 Keizo Kitajima made his impressive debut with photographs capturing Koza in Okinawa, a town near the US military base, in the period just after the end of the Vietnam War. Subsequently, he expanded his purview to include Tokyo, New York, Eastern Europe, and the Soviet Union, just as that nation was on the verge of collapse.

The Joy of Portraits, featuring portrait work from each of these series, presents the most complete picture to date of the extraordinary photographer Keizo Kitajima's work from 1975 - 1991, including many previously unseen images.


September 09, 2009

Welcome Back Art World!! Tonight the L.E.S Galleries Open Up..!

Yes..It's the start to the busy Fall Art Season in NYC. Yea!!

To start it off right.. tonight all the uber hip galleries on the Lower East Side, have joined forces for a joint night opening extravaganza.

FYI.. Much to MAO's surprise.. It would seem they've also signed a deal with the devil, aka Big Money with The Armory Show for some added media exposure. We'd guess the regular flood of gallery applications for their NeXT Art fair might have slowed down to a trickle a bit, perhaps..?? Anyway.. it's great to see such a coordination... should make for a fun night.

SO..  MAO got this curious invite a few nights ago with the very full gallery list of openings..  So we will be doing the rounds tonight, bring your roller skates cause there's so many (14) to see in 2 hours! See you there!... and WELCOME BACK everyone!

Josh_azzarella_Fantasia (Photo by Josh Azzarella, Untitled #100 (Fantasia), 2007-2009, High-definition video, ed. of 5 + 1 AP, 12:06 )

September 9, 6-8 pm

The Armory Show invites you to join us at this year's Lower East Side season opening evening. Downtown galleries kick-off the fall season with over a dozen exhibition openings September 9 from 6 - 8 pm.
29C Ludlow Street
Tina Hejtmanek: Day without a Name
Through October 25


Nicelle Beauchene
163 Eldridge Street
Rachel Foullon: Grab a Root and Growl
Through October 18


Lisa Cooley
34 Orchard Street
Jon Pestoni and Zak Prekop
Through October 18


195 Bowery
Castaneda/Reiman: Sculptures of Paintings of Places We've Never Been
Josh Azzarella: Untitled #100 (Fantasia)
Through October 11


Eleven Rivington
11 Rivington
Adam Shecter: New Video
Through October 4


Thierry Goldberg Projects
5 Rivington
Khalif Kelly: Metamorphosis
Through October 11


14A Orchard Street
Genesis Breyer P-Orridge: 30 Years of Being Cut Up
Through October 18


Museum 52
4 East 2nd Street (and Bowery)
Jacob Robichaux
Through October 10


On Stellar Rays
133 Orchard Street
212.598 .3012
Zipora Fried: Trust Me. Be Careful
Through October 25


Simon Preston
301 Broome Street (between Forsyth and Eldridge)
Caragh Thuring: Assembly
Through  November 1


Salon 94 Freemans
1 Freeman Alley
Carter: And Within Area Although
Through October 24


Sue Scott Gallery
1 Rivington Street (at Bowery)
Franklin Evans: 2008/2009 < 2009/2010
Through October 24


Small A Projects
261 Broome Street
Michael Patterson-Carver
Through October 18
Rachel Uffner Gallery
47 Orchard Street (between Grand and Hester)
Sara Greenberger Rafferty: Tears
Through October 25

July 31, 2009

Congrats to Ariana Page Russell on her New Book & Limited Edition!

MAO's friends over at DeCode Books have been very busy this summer, with lots of new great books.

Ariana_russell_cover_dressing But there's a special place in our MAO wallet heart for photographer Ariana Page Russell, so we can't be more happy to see this very young artist having her very first book!  Congrats Ariana!

Visit DECODE Books on-line bookstore: decodebooks.com
FYI... Platform Gallery is hosting a book signing party to introduce three new titles 
by Seattle-based publisher DECODE Books by photographers Ariana Page Russell, Bill Jacobson, and Steven Miller
So... If you just happen to be stuck in Seattle.. you can join them at the gallery to celebrate these new monographs, Saturday, August 8, from 4 to 6PM
Dressing by Ariana Page Russell
Ariana Page Russell turns to her own skin as both a canvas and as a source of adornments. “The power of a blush, an ephemeral and uncontrollable response revealing internal sentiment, becomes the fashion of skin. I have sensitive skin that easily flushes. In Dressing, I use the imagery of this temporary change as my medium via collages made from photographs of my skin. These collages show shades of sensitivity in reds and pinks made into patterns, then scanned and printed as temporary tattoos. I place the skin tattoos back on skin, adorning myself with a longer lasting, intentional Ariana_page_russell_pharaoh blush. Rather than being frustrated by my skin’s transparency, I claim it by dressing up in the crimson hues that reveal my vulnerability.” Instead of covering up her skin condition, Russell embraces the changes her skin makes, exploring the concepts of fashion and beauty: “These tattoos become and intimate fashion as their own sort of clothing.... I am investigating where one surface ends and another begins, the bloom of adornment, and how shifting exteriors reveal as they conceal.”

5 x 7 inches
11 four-color plates
24 pages, hardcover
1 original tipped-in photograph

Signature Series books are limited to 500 signed and numbered copies. Each contain one original tipped-in photograph.

ISBN: 978-0-9793373-5-2

$40 USD

Plus..there's also a super cheap.. and terrific Limited Edition that comes with this crazy sexy print!

Details :   A Limited edition archival pigment print, signed and numbered, with copy of Dressing.

Photo #2, Pharaoh (self portrait), 2009

Sheet size: 20 x 16 in.
Image size: 19 x 13 in.
Edition of 20, signed and numbered.

Special Prepublication Price:
$500 USD until 8.8.09
$600 USD after 8.8.09

More Details here... http://www.decodebooks.com/russell_collectors.html

OH.. and be sure to tell them over at Decode Books, that MAO sent you... and they'll give you the huge "Special MAO Fan Club Discount"

July 26, 2009

Photos from Venice..and the Biennale..

Some Photos from Venice..and the Biennale.. YES.. as most readers correctly guessed.. MAO and the Quizling went to Venice Italy for a quick summer vacation!

VeniceVenice_Biennale_enterence_MAOBiennale entrance by John Baldessari.

So not only was Venice amazing to see.. but we got to see the 53rd Biennale!! 

There was almost too much art to even blog about.. but here are some of the high points from one day's art walk in Venice.

Photo #1 - Actually this is the Entrance to the "Making Worlds" show curated by Daniel Birnbaum at the Giardini.

The following photos (Taken by MAO)

are all works presented at this one exhibition hall at the Giardini which was about half of the curated "Non-National Pavilion" show.

Tomas_saraceno_roomPhoto #2 - Tomas Saraceno

Galaxy Forming along Filaments, like Droplets along the Strands of a Spider's. It filled the entire room probably roughly..a  30 feet by 30 feet cube installation.

Wolfgang_Tillmans_Venice_BiennalePhoto #3 Wolfgang Tillmans, An entire room of his photos. Wolfgang, was one of the only photographers to be included into this years Biennale.

Richard_wentworth_false_ceilingPhoto #4 work by Richard Wentworth.

A new artist to MAO, Richard had 2 sculptural  installations where he's separated familiar objects from their normal surroundings and placed then into new constellations. Quite whimsical!

This work was titled.. False Ceiling.

Spencer_finch_Venice_biennale Photo #5 Spencer Finch.

This was one of 3 works Spencer Finch had included into the Biennale.

I think this one work attempts to recreates candle light as observed by Spencer.

Rachel_khedoori_BiennalePhoto #6 Rachel Khedoori

This Sculpture recreates a labyrinthine cave tunnel system...in miniature plaster. We think this work was just titled "Cave" but not 100% sure.

Simon_Starling Photo #7 work by Simon Starling

A film and sculpture.. titled.. Wilhem Noack oHG. This photo MAo took was just a picture of the "projector" which was showing a film about a company of metal fabricators in Germany.

July 25, 2009

Pictures from the MAO Summer Vacation

IMG_0220 Pictures from the MAO Summer Vacation.

Yes.. MAO got a much needed vacation during July.


IMG_0254 Bridge_by_Calatrava And no vacation is a truly a vacation without drinking lots of alcohol taking in some great contemporary art.

So, Can Anyone guess where MAO and Dr. Quiz went?

One small hint.... Bridge by Santiago Calatrava !!

July 19, 2009

There's a New On-line Art Project to Watch - "Summer Sexy"

There's a New On-line Art Project to Watch - "Summer Sexy"

OK.. My little MAO-ettes... Do we have a website for you!!!

From the gallery master minds on the far West 27th Street the edge of the known Contemporary Art Universe, comes this new hot and helpful on-line summer art project. FYI.. that would be : a production of Winkleman Gallery and Schroeder Romero.

Since most of the privileged, pampered, tony, lazy,  in the know, collecting art world is at the beach already, these gallerists have put together a cool way for collectors to see what's hot and happening in the galleries.  So, each and every week they have asked the most self important collectors and curators to choose an interesting "Summer Sexy" work of art currently for sale at in a summer gallery show to feature.

These art works are then posted for sale to readers on the www.summer-sexy.blogspot.com website each week.

Adam_Raphael_poker_from_bearly_workingWith any sale commissions going to the collector or curators favorite charity. What could be better than that??  So let your mouse do the walking...

Check out... Summer Sexy!

They's already had some great posts, but's here's just one of the best most sexy choices so far....

  Brilliant New York-based collector Michael Hoeh has selected Adam Raphael's 'smokin' photograph "Poker" from Barely Working, currently on exhibition at Bonni Benrubi Gallery(New York).

Adam Raphael
"Poker" from Barely Working
Digital ink-jet print
16" x 24"
Edition of 12
Image courtesy of Bonni Benrubi Gallery, New York.

Proceeds from the sale of this work will benefit Michael and Bonni's selected charity : The Somaly Mam Foundation, focused on putting an end to world wide Human Trafficking and Childhood Slavery, their mission is "to give victims and survivors a voice in their lives, liberate victims, end slavery, and empower survivors as they create and sustain lives of dignity."

July 14, 2009

Some Very Sad News.. Gawker is reporting Dash Snow has died.

Some Very Sad News.. Gawker is reporting Young Artist, Dash Snow has died.

Dash-snow_dead Here's the story from Gawker. http://gawker.com/5314284/dash-snow-downtown-artist-said-to-be-dead-of-overdose.. The story is also on the New York Times Website..

We at MAO loved his work.. particularly his totally brilliant artist books.

He is a NY artist we at MAO will certainly miss. RIP.

July 11, 2009

The MAO Summer Vacation....

John_arsenault_Last_resort_2000 MAO has been away on a much needed vacation...

Posting to return again soon.

(Photo by

John Arsenault
The Last Resort, 2000
Signed, titled, dated, and numbered, verso
Chromogenic print
30 x 30 inches)

June 12, 2009

Save the Date: June 24th.. for The Rema Hort Mann Foundation 10% Charity Event

Save the Date: June 24th.. for The Rema Hort Mann Foundation 10% Charity Event.

It's a new great event during Gay Pride Week NYC.. focused on Gay Artists!

Here's the event website : http://www.rhmfoundation.org/10percent/index.html

There's A Silent Art Auction Featuring Over
Robert_Melee_Disco_Tray70 Works Donated by LGBTQ Artists
A fundraiser during gay pride week—
open to everyone! And no, the auction is not a bunch of bull dyke and giant penis pictures.

Wednesday, June 24th from 6 to 9pm

at 28 Wooster Street, the former home of  art recession road kill Guild and Greyshkul Gallery.

Tickets $20 at the door.
Plus they have an amazing art auction featuring some of the most important LGBTQ artists in the world. Where 100% of all the proceeds from the sale of artwork go to support cancer patients, and visual artist and the creation of a new fund to sponsor event, presentations, and lectures by artists from the gay community. Can you have a more worthy cause?

(Photo #1 for auction.. by : Robert Melee Disco Tray(2009), Medium: Enamel on metal, Dimensions: 23" x 14", Minimum bid: $1,200, Estimated retail value: $2,400, Courtesy of the artist and Andrew Kreps Gallery)

So MAO got the chance to ask some nosy questions to the event organizer.. Quang Bao, director of The Rema Hort Mann Foundation.

Here's a bit of the MAO interview. See you on June 24th.. and HAPPY PRIDE! Plus there's more info here.


1. So what is the  the individual artist grant program at the RHM Foundation ? Have they had gay artists in the program?
A: Through an external nominating committee, the Foundation annually receives approximately 130 suggestions of eligible emerging artists. They represent everything from painters to performance artists to video artists. We're at eight grants at $10,000 now and the money is unrestricted. The committee is looking for the artist who hasn't had much exposure but is someone who has tremendous potential. I just checked the list of 94 grantees and over our 14 years of doing this, we have awarded grants to gay and lesbian artists every single year. 2003 was particularly pink.
2 What's RHM Foundation's ties to the Gay Community or to the Artist?
A: The visual art world, perhaps the art world in general, has so many gay artists, dealers, professionals and curators working in it. The Foundation board and volunteers reflect that. We'd be incomplete if we didn't somehow understand that while doing our work. Our grant program doesn't 'gay profile' anybody. Sometimes, you can look at an artist's work and make a conclusion about his or her sexuality--other times not at all. I suspect if we took the labels off 10%, people would never come to the conclusion that all of the works were created by gay artists. The Foundation keeps a modest budget and we tend to work on a very intimate level with artists who receive grants. We try to invite them to events, see their exhibitions--gay or straight and everything in between.
3. Why have just a Gay Artist focused charity event? Great Gay Artist.. isn't that term redundant?
A: Why not. A community can be brought together to show its strength and celebrate its characteristics. And quite frankly, you only have to love the art to buy it. People told us that fundraisers in summer time can't work because the art world is away. In this economy, a nonprofit can't take off an entire season. So, we're going for it (and hoping it pays out).

4. So you're establishing a year-long fund for art projects that supports the larger community of gay artists? What type of projects are you considering? Have there been any so far? How many projects per year? What's the goal for the fund?

A: The fund will be established based on the proceeds after 10% so nothing's set yet. We plan to put together a simple RFP that will allow for the artists to propose ideas for an event, public presentation or even artist workshop that will put artists in touch with one another and a larger public. We'll form an external committee to help decide who gets the grants and how much. You have to put back whatever you draw from a particular community, and this is our way of acknowledging the true spirit and energy of 10%.

5.What are the highlights in terms of the artworks available and the party?

A: We've got over 70 pieces--beautiful photographs priced at $250 from recent MFA graduates all the way up to Andy Warhols. We're also intending to make this a real party. I'm not a hip downtown club goer but I understand that our 2 DJs are the hottest, the host is someone people fly in to see and there's free drinking all night long. Anyone who comes will want to stay--there just won't be a better art benefit to go to during gay pride week.

June 05, 2009

MAO Art Buy of the Month.. The Aperture Party June 18th Benefit Print !

MAO Art Buy of the Month.. The Aperture Party June 18th Benefit Print !

OK..My little MAO-ettes.. this is a great buy.

Thomas_Allen_SomeLikeItHot_ApertureSo the Aperture Foundation got artist Thomas Allen to donate this amazing print for their First Annual Summer Party on June 18th.

So, anyone who buys a party ticket for $150, gets this cool hot print for free!

The print is an 8 x 10 signed C-Print, in an edition of 250.

So, Even if you can't make it to the party.. the print is worth well over $150.

More info on Photographer Thomas Allen, you'll find it here.

This great print and party event tickets can be purchased here : 


Here are the Event Details..See you at the Party!




 THURSDAY, JUNE 18, 8:00-11:00 PM
 An  exclusive  limited-edition  print by Thomas Allen, commissioned byAperture!
 A raffle of choice items, including a commissioned portrait by MatthewPillsbury!
 Live music by Garage-Rock Band the Willowz!
 CO-CHAIRED BY: Michael Foley, Michael Hoeh, Cathy Kaplan, Severn Taylor
 Please join Aperture for the foundation’s first summer party celebrating
 great photography and music at Aperture’s fabulous gallery space in the
 heart  of  Chelsea’s  art  district. The backdrop for the party is the
 spectacular Edge of Vision: Abstraction in Contemporary Photography
exhibition, curated by Lyle Rexer.

 Tickets are $150 for a single, and $150 for a double. All ticket holders
 (single and dual) will receive an exclusive limited edition print by Thomas
(pictured above) created specially for the event. Guests will mingle
 with Aperture artists, enjoy cocktails and canapés, have the chance to win
 spectacular raffle items, including a commissioned portrait by Matthew
 Pillsbury, and hear the live music from the  Willowz  "One of America's most promising young bands."-The Village Voice.

 Some Like It Hot is co-chaired by Michael Foley, Aperture patron and
 collector Michael Hoeh and Aperture board members Cathy Kaplan, and Severn Taylor.
 All  proceeds  from the party will go towards Aperture’s publications, exhibitions, and public programs.
 THURSDAY, June 18, 2009
 8:00 pm
 Aperture Gallery
 547 West 27th Street, 4th floor
 New York, NY 10001

 (212) 505-5555
 Subway: C, E to 23rd Street and 8th Avenue or 1 to 28th Street and 7th

May 28, 2009

Heritage Auction House to Open in NYC.. and Senior Jobs are Available!

Heritage Auction House from Dallas, Texas to open up offices in NYC.. and now senior JOBS are now available!

Brian_Ulrich_Powerhouse_Gym Well the one good thing a recession does for business is it opens up new opportunities for those looking to seize the day!

While the stuffed peacocks at  Sothebys, and Christies have been taking massive losses, cutting expenses, laying off staff, Bloomsbury, Bonhams.. and now Heritage Auction Houses are all expanding in New York City!! YEA!! Now if they would just start cutting their auction fees!

So if you're looking for a new job in the Art Auction world.. you might get in contact ASP with Heritage Auctions. 

{Note Photos from blogger/artist Brian Ulrich, Photo #1 - Power House Gym, 2008 and Photo #2 - Brian_Ulrich_Checkout Untitled Thrift (Check Out), 2006, chromogenic print , 30 x 40” , edition of 5.... FYI Brian's new show,"Thrift and Dark Stores" opens up at wonderful Julie Saul Gallery Tonight.. Don't miss it! }

We at MAO wish all three of these new expanding auction houses all the good fortune in the world!!

Good Luck, and please send MAO free catalogs !

Here's the latest email MAO got from our friends at the ambitious people at Heritage in TX (yes..there are actually a few savvy art people in Texas!!)


Heritage seeking top experts, opening NY and LA Galleries

Dear Mike @ MAO,

We just Love your great art website, and since you are obviously a major player in the New York City art world we need your help!

While other auction firms have reported shrinking sales and significant lay-offs, Heritage, the world's third largest auction house, is adding multiple world-class experts to its current staff in over 25 different categories. These experts will, in some cases, head new departments and in others will enhance existing department expertise. We have positions open at our headquarters in Dallas as well as at our new state-of-the-art galleries in prime locations in both Midtown Manhattan and Beverly Hills, scheduled to open in late 2009, or in early 2010.

We believe Heritage's business model of transparency and respect for our bidders' time is the wave of the future, as clients are discovering us in record numbers (read our Mission and Values statement here). In fact, we recently enjoyed our most profitable quarter ever (Jan-Mar 2009), as well as the best April in our 33-year history as an auction house. Our 2009 sales volume will likely match or exceed our record 2008 numbers even as the other major auction houses report 60% sales decreases.

Heritage is now ready to hire the world's best experts to support existing departments and launch new ones, especially in the following categories, though we will consider many other areas as well, including sub-categories:

  • American Art
  • Ancient Coinage
  • Antiquities
  • Asian Art
  • Books, Maps, and Prints
  • Decorative Arts
  • European Art
  • Jewelry and Timepieces
  • Latin American Art
  • Modern and Contemporary Art
  • Photography
  • Vintage Automobiles
  • Wine

These are top, high profile positions; we are seeking ambitious candidates who will bring their excellent reputation, business ethics, strong work ethic, organizational skills, and knowledge to represent Heritage in the best light. Preferred candidates will have more than 5 years in a major auction house environment, or experience as a commercial dealer (a combination of both would be ideal). Writing and public speaking talents and skills are a plus. Job duties will include obtaining consignments; supervising the vetting of condition; authentication of properties consigned; reviewing inquiries; proofing of cataloging, essays, and advertising copy; marketing specific objects to important clients, and supervising two or more auctions per year with full bottom-line responsibility in the case of department heads.

If you know someone who might be interested and if you feel they have the qualifications we seek, please ask them to email their resume and salary history to [email protected].

Thanks you,

Heritage Client Services
[email protected]
3500 Maple Ave. 17th Floor
Dallas, TX 75219-3941

May 22, 2009

Hauser & Wirth to Open in NYC! Is this a Good Time to Open an Art Gallery?

Yes... you read that correctly.. A New Contemporary Art Gallery is actually not closing opening up in New York City! Yea!

London's Hauser & Wirth Gallery is planning to open on the upper east side of New York City in September! But, with the US economey crashing, is this a Good Time to Open an Art Gallery? Maybe, we shall see, a huge economic recovery might just be several years away around the corner.

So here's the exciting email we got this morning...

Hauser & Wirth, widely considered Europe’s most influential and acclaimed gallery of contemporary art and modern masters with galleries in Zurich and London, has just announced it  will expand its global activities by opening a fully dedicated gallery in New York City in September 2009.   

Occupying four fulll floors of new exhibition and event space at 32 East 69th Street in Manhattan, Hauser & Wirth New York will present new work by its international stable of more than 30 foremost established and emerging artists, and masters whose estates it represents. Opening with YARD, the seminal Environment first made in 1961 by renowned artist Allan Kaprow, inventor of ’Happenings,’ the gallery’s 2009-2010 season will include extraordinary exhibitions of never before seen works by Paul McCarthy, Ida Applebroog, Eva Hesseand Roni Horn.

A press release with further details is attached.  For additional information or to request images, please be in touch! 

Here's the press release Download Hauser_and_Wirth_to_open_in_NYC

This is so nice to see a new major gallery opening in New York.  Hauser & Wirth is one of our favorite galleries in the world, and we so welcome some fresh bloodanother exciting player to the top of the NYC art pyramid.  Welcome!!  And we at MAO wish H & W all the luck in the word!

OK..so that's the good news..

But we also wanted to point out to the MAO readers, that we have been getting a disturbing  curious number of these potentially sad "Interesting" emails as well...












(Please note, we at MAO apologize in advanc if this announcement facsimile just happens to resembles any actual gallery email) 

So, maybe MAO is just a bit too much of a total ass hole cynic, but we can't help wonder... Is this just the newest 2009 gallery lie speak for... We're closing the art gallery cause we are bleeding money? Or do you think they are really moving? What do the MAO readers think?

Is this a good time to move an art gallery? Maybe. We would bet that many landlords around the city are very open to offering huge financial inncentives to get galleries to rent space in their buildings these days.

But, so far, several of these "Moving Announcements" to an undetermined or undisclosed location have been fillinghitting our email in box. And Sadly, we have not yet seen a commensurate number of announcements stating.. Please Join US at our new location, it's...XXX on YY street!  Well.. Hopefully we'll start to see some of these soon.. cause right now..there seem to be too many galleries "in motion",and so it's going to make for a very quiet summer.

Hmm.. Or.. Maybe MAO just doesn't deserve to get invited to the gallery opening parties anymore..??

Hmm...  No...that can't be it...

Happy Memorial Day Weekend Everyone!

May 21, 2009

A New Art Investment Fund Has Been Started By Castlestone Management

A New Art Investment Fund Has Been Started By Castlestone Management with offices in London and New York.

Andy_Warhol_Dollar_Signs The alternative asset class investment adviser has started a brand new Art Investment Fund with 25 million dollars of partner's money.. and it is now open to additional investors!

Hmm.. maybe it's a good time to buy Contemporary Art? No? What do you think?

FYI.. But, So far they've already purchased $16 million in art, in mostly the free falling contemporary art market, and plan to purchase another $9 million over the next few months.

(Photo #1, Andy Warhol, Dollar Signs, 1981, silkscreen on canvas )

They plan to diversify their purchases across 26 artists, mostly focused on dead artists or big names at the end of their career (aka..the soon to be dead artists). 

When MAO first started art collecting, one of our good friend at Sotheby's once told us,  "The only good artist is a dead artist...!!"  But then again.. he had been drinking a few too many strong cocktails at Fire Island at the time, and he worked in the Old Masters Department at the auction house.  So maybe he is a bit biased advising Castlestone Management.

Well, so far they have purchased art works by Chuck Close, Daimian Hirst, Richard Prince, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Lucio Fontana, Willem de Kooning, and Alexander Calder.  So basically they have purchased all the most overpriced and over hyped  hot contemporary names in the art world. After looking at the people working at Castlestone Management, it's not clear if anyone on their staff has any experience curating a contemporary art collection, or even an Art History education. Yikes!

But Castlestone has also just announced 2 new unnamed hires from Sothebys  (who've not yet started working at the fund).   But at least it's nice to see a professional investment vehicle focused on Art as an asset class. We at MAO wish them all the luck in the world with their new art investment fund!

OH.. and for all those hungry, starving, dying "ambitious" art dealers left out there... CALL Angus Murry ASAP,  cause he is the Castlestone CEO, and he's still got $9 million left to spend on overvalued contemporary art.

Castlestone Management LLC, Head Office

610 Fifth Avenue Suite 602 , Rockefeller Center

New York, NY 10020

Phone: +1 212 387 9600 Fax: +1 212 586 0850

Farah Nayeri from Bloomberg News posted a story yesterday afternoon on Castlestone.. See below...


Art Is Good as Goldin Inflation Era, Castlestone’s Murray Says
2009-05-19 23:00:01.7 GMT

Interview by Farah Nayeri
     May 20 (Bloomberg) -- Framed close-ups of two elderly men
hang in Castlestone Management’s London meeting room. One of the
men smiles and looks away; the other sullenly faces front.
     These large photographs by Chuck Close -- bought for
$25,000 each -- are of artists Robert Rauschenberg, who died
last year, and Jasper Johns, 79. They’re part of a new
Castlestone art fund.
     The fund is designed as an anti-inflation shelter at a time
when recession-busting stimulus packages are flooding the global
economy with cash. To Castlestone, which has some $660 million
under management, scarce art -- by dead artists, or by big names
in late career -- is as good as gold.
     “As long as the value of money falls, the value of real
assets will rise,” says founder and joint chief executive
officer Angus Murray, 39. “Art to me is exactly the same asset
as gold bullion.”
     “The two assets are running in parallel,” says the
Australian-born Murray, who wears an open-necked white shirt
with his suit trousers. “The devaluation of money is affecting
     The global economy is in its worst slump since
World War
, and will shrink 1.3 percent this year, according to the
International Monetary Fund. The U.S. has introduced a $787
billion stimulus package to combat recession.
     Murray pulls out a sheaf of graphs showing how gold has
tripled in price this decade. Art, too, is an “irreplaceable,
unleveraged, real asset.” As the value of money erodes, art
will appreciate over the fund’s eight-year life, says Murray.

                        Basquiat, Fontana

     Castlestone has bought $16 million worth of art and plans
to spend another $9 million by the end of September to create a
diversified portfolio of about 26 artists. They include
Michel Basquiat
, Lucio Fontana, Willem de Kooning and
. The priciest work so far is a Basquiat that cost $1.2
million. Another $885,000 was spent on a De Kooning.
     The portfolio also has a Damien Hirst butterfly painting,
bought after Hirst said he would stop making them, and a
“Nurse” painting. Otherwise, says Murray, active
contemporary artists are avoided, as their work is
     At the Sotheby’s Impressionist and Modern Art sales in New
York this month, Murray bid $250,000 on a Matisse
, “Venus Assise,” which sold for $326,500 including
fees. He also bid $1.25 million on a Rembrandt Bugatti
sculpture, “Grand Tigre Royal,” which sold for $1.87 million
with fees.

                          Losing Value

     Art already bought by Castlestone for the fund has shed a
third of its value, says Murray. “I had a house, it went down
in value too, but I’m not going to change my view on that,” he
shrugs, saying this makes it a good time to enter the market.
     Prices of contemporary art at auction have fallen 30
percent to 50 percent in the last six months.
     The London-based Fine Art Fund Group gives equal weighting
to Old Masters; Impressionist and modern art; and contemporary
art. It has lost 20 percent to 30 percent of its value in the
last year, and now manages around $100 million, according to
Chief Executive Philip Hoffman. Until the end of 2007, the fund
had an average annualized return of 23 percent, says Hoffman.
     This year is a “bad time” for selling, “but acquiring
art is unbelievably attractive,” says Hoffman. At the same
time, he says new funds lack a track record: “Art is a
dangerous thing if you don’t know what you’re doing.”

                      Inflation Hedge

     New York-based art dealerRichard L. Feigen, who deals in
European paintings from 1300 to the present, views art as a
“valid refuge” at a time when collectors are “worried about
inflation.” Yet he adds a note of caution.
     “A bar of gold is a bar of gold,” he says. “No two works
of art are the same, unless they’re editions of a print.”
     For art to be a good investment, Feigen says, it must be of
“permanent importance” to art history, of “museum quality”
to lure institutional as well as individual buyers, and of
interest to more than one part of the world.
     In Feigen’s view, art funds lack specialists with the depth
of knowledge to pick out the right works, and are prone to
invest in overvalued art. He cites Basquiat as an example; he
says the painter, who died at age 27, “made no permanent
contribution to art history” and is “vastly overpriced.”
     Murray says the dearth of affordable art specialists
“would have definitely been a very accurate description six
years ago. However, there’s a whole lot of people who don’t have
a job at the moment.”
     “The redundancies we’ve recently got from Christie’s and
Sotheby’s have helped,” he said.
     Castlestone says it has just hired two people who
previously worked with Sotheby’s, and will not disclose their
names until they begin work.

                          Murray’s Money

     Most of the art in the portfolio has been bought with
Murray’s money: He has invested four-fifths of the initial $25
million, and his partners, the rest. Those investments won’t be
touched for eight years, says Murray.
     Castlestone’s 1 percent annual management charge, and the
20 percent performance charge on the fund’s gains, will be
reinvested over the period. After eight years, the art will be
sold at an auction that Murray hopes Sotheby’s or Christie’s
International will hold.
     Interested retail investors must put in a minimum of
$10,000 or 10,000 pounds (depending on which currency they want)
and go through financial advisers in Castlestone’s network.
Murray expects an average investment of $25,000 to $75,000. The
fund has agreed obligations amounting to another $21 million
     In eight years, Murray hopes “I can actually stand up and
say: ‘Here’s a catalog from Sotheby’s that shows you I bought at
this price, I sold at this price, this was the independent
annualized return of 11 percent. It worked. We were right.’”

May 12, 2009

The Best Kept Secret in the NY Art Photography Auction World.. iGavel.com

The Best Kept Secret in the Art Photography Auction World.. www.iGavel.com

OK.. so promise to please keep this just between us MAO readers.

MAO is not sure if he's the only smart awake one who's noticed, but we've found that most of the big greedy auction houses have been stupid slow at reducing reserve levels, and the presale price estimates.  So the big art and photography auctions are doing very poorly, and not selling many of their auction lots cause the minimums are unrealistic too high (think very 2007).

Vik_Muniz_dinosaud_dung But here is your chance to get some amazing art photography bargains.

Tomorrow is the iGavel Photo Auction (www.iGavel.com) and this time it includes some real gems with very low reserve levels.

Works by Alfred Steiglitz, Karl Struss, August Sander, Alexander Rodchenko, Helen Levitt,  Margaret-Bourke White, Manuel Alvarez Bravo, George Platt Lynes, Todd Webb, and even a lot by Vik Muniz (Photo #1) ..plus many more. It's a very impressive list of photographers.

The auctions all end tomorrow, and for you bargain hunters, there are not many bids yet so it's well worth checking out.

Some of these lots have starting bids as low as only $500.

Josef_Sudek_photographie There's even several really hard to find photobooks.. like the 1956 publication of Josef Sudek Fotografie Book, First Edition starting at only $325.00. (Photo #2)

By the way.. no bidding against MAO!! And if you have any questions about any of the lots.. Just call, auction organizer,and too nice and honest to be an art dealer Daniel Cooney at

email: [email protected]

phone: 212.255.8158

mail:   Daniel Cooney Fine Art
          511 West 25th Street, #506
          New York, NY 10001

Oh, and be sure to tell Dan, MAO sent you, cause Dan will give all the MAO readers the special MAO big discount white glove service. 


May 11, 2009

Artist Mark di Suvero Talks with Renzo Piano At The Morgan Library

Artist Mark di Suvero talks with Renzo Piano At The Morgan Library this Wednesday, May 13th at 6:30pm.

Mark_di_subero_beethovens_quartet This is one NYC event not to miss... a talk between one of the worlds greatest Architects, talking with one of the greatest contemporary sculptors at one of NYC best Libraries. Can life it get any better??

Photo of Mark di Suvero amazing sculpture "Beethovan's Quartet, 2003"  at Storm King.

Get your tickets here while they last... or email [email protected]

Here's their press release...

Le Conversazioni FMR: An Evening with Renzo Piano and Mark di Suvero
Renowned architect Renzo Piano (recipient of the Pritzker Prize and designer of The Morgan Library & Museum’s recent expansion completed in 2006) and noted sculptor Mark di Suvero discuss the varied-and often surprising-intersections of the arts, conceptions of beauty, and inspirations on their work with Antonio Monda, Director of the Le Conversazioni literary festival, Capri, Italy. Presented by FMR White Edition (a bimonthly art magazine published by Marilena Ferrari-FMR Casa editrice d'arte e Fondazione) and The Morgan Library & Museum.
Wednesday, May 13, 2009, 6:30 p.m.

May 05, 2009

Photographers Richard Renaldi, and Doug DuBois, talk with Lesley A. Martin

Richard_renaldi_Fall_river_Boys Photographers Richard Renaldi, and Doug DuBois, talk with Lesley A Martin at the Affordable Art Fair this week!

This week starts the Afordable Art Fair. It's a fair oriented toward reasonably priced contemporary art, which in this shitty economy, is the only art most people can hope to own. The fair tends to include lots of think inexpensive new young emerging artists, so it's always been a fun place to find that next hot rising star. FYI, the SVA will have a booth again, showing some of their most recent MFA graduates work. This booth of 9 SVA students is sure to be one of the AAF high points.

AAF Where:
7 West 34th Street (b/w 5th & 6th Avenues)
New York, NY 10001
Fair Hours:

Thursday, May 7th 12:00PM - 6:00PM

Friday, May 8th 12:00PM - 8:00PM

Saturday, May 9th 12:00PM - 8:00PM

Sunday, May 10th 12:00PM - 5:00PM

The fair is also hosting a series of free lectures, but the one which caught our eye, was a talk between Aperture Photobook publisher giant, Lesley A. Martin, with 2 great contemporary art photographers.

Lesley A. Martin, is the driving force behind the highest quality photobook being produced today. As Editor at Aperture books, she is one of the most influential people in the Art Photography world. Her writing has been published in Aperture, American Photo, DoubleTake, and Interiors magazine, among other publications. She is the editor of over forty books on photography, including Reflex: A Vik Muniz Primer; and Model American: Katy Grannan.

Richard_renaldi_Derrek_2004 Also, for those of you who've seen Richard Renaldi's photography, you'll know he's one of the most renown young portrait photographers working today.  His newest photobook, Fall River Boys, recently published by Charles Lane Press, is a true work of art. 

(Photo #1, Richard Renaldi, "Raymond and Jeffrey, 2002" from Fall River Boys) 

In the rich B&W tradition of Walker Evans, and Dorothea Lang, Richard has crafted a thoughtful, year 2000, portrait of a common US dreary industrial suburban town with surprising luscious beauty. He's found, in this most unexpected place, a portrayal of hope, and strength within the young men of inner core America during these changing economic times. MAO thinks, you'll find this new book a total necessity for any serious photobook collection.  Hopefully Richard will be signing (and possibly selling) copies of his newest book after the panel talk.  You can also find copies of Fall River Boys here... or just go to www.charleslanepress.com

(Photo #2, Richard Renaldi,  "Derrek 2004" from Fall River Boys) 

FYI.. For those photo art collectors looking for an amazing bargain, there's one of Richard Renaldi's photos now for sale at the Humble Arts Foundation for just $750 in an edition of only 5, and it comes with a signed copy of the book as well! Now, How Sweet is that ?

Photographer, Doug DuBois also has a new book out by Aperture.  MAO has actually not seen this book yet.. but it looks very promising. The book, Doug DuBois : All the Days And Nights is available directly from Aperutre.  Hopefully Doug will be signing books after the talk.

Here are the details for the talk by Lesley A. Martin, Richard Renaldi, and Doug DuBois :


Contemporary Portraiture with Doug DuBois and Richard Renaldi
Panel Discussion

Thursday, May 7, 2009
5:00 pm

Affordable Art Fair
20 West 22nd Street, Ste. 1512
New York, New York
(212) 255-2003

Lesley A. Martin, Publisher of Aperture's book program, will present artists Doug DuBois and Richard Renaldi, who will speak about their respective bodies of work and how they fit into the broader context of portraiture in contemporary photography.

Doug DuBois: All the Days and Nights (Aperture, 2009) resonates with emotional immediacy, offering a potent examination of family relations and what it means to subject personal relationships to the unblinking eye of the camera. Doug DuBoisbegan photographing his family in 1984, prior to his father's near-fatal fall from a commuter train and his mother's subsequent breakdown and hospitalizations. More than twenty years later, DuBois's project has developed in remarkable ways. Each photograph is rich with color, nuanced gestures and glances enveloping the viewer in a multivalent, emotionally tense world.

Richard Renaldi is a photographer in search of the brief encounter—that fleeting moment when a stranger opens his life to him and, consequently, to the viewer. His trust in the descriptive and empathic abilities of the camera verges on that of his nineteenth–and early-twentieth-century predecessors. His first monograph, Figure and Ground(Aperture, 2006), presents portraits and landscapes taken from coast to coast, across the United States. They form a collective portrait of a population and nation going through a process of diversification that has already dramatically enlarged the notion of what defines Middle America. In Renaldi's second monograph, Fall River Boys(Charles Lane Press, 2009), an extraordinary body of images—both portraits and landscapes—is gathered for the first time. The resulting photographs, made over the course of nine years, are not brief encounters. Renaldi's quiet gaze considers his subjects with neither judgment nor irony. What emerges is a nuanced portrait of a city where young men grow into manhood surrounded by a landscape of idyllic natural beauty, frayed at the margins by darkened relics of an industrial past.

April 28, 2009

The Best Things in Life are Free.... Free NYC Museum Days...

Some of the best things in Life are Free.... YES.. It's Summer Free NYC Museum Days...

So.. I'm sure everyone is busy out getting their Swine Flu vaccine shots these days..

Swine_flu Is MAO the only sane person who thinks the crazy TV media has totally blow this Swine Flu out of proportion?

So far there have only been 50ish cases of swine flu in the USA. This is not a big problem!

The media is really doing their best to cause a panic out of this. It's so stupid. Believe it or not, the price of Lean Hog futures on the Chicago Commodities exchance has actually crashed today! A drop of almost 10% in 2 days.

Well..Would someone please pass MAO the pork chops!!

Anyway, with everyone, including MAO, during this recession looking to save their pennies.. Today we found a great summery of which NYC Msueums are free...and when! Please share this list with everyone.

CLICK Here to see the most up to date LIST.

This nice list is brought to you by the great online web resource www.nyc-arts.org

April 20, 2009

The Current State of the Art Market - Free Public Symposium

The Current SAD, SHITTY,  State of the Art Market - A Free Public Symposium at FIT, this week!

Art_Market_panel So my little MAO-Ettes.. Here is a free event that is clearly not to be missed. 

Some of the Art Industries most in the know professionals will talk somewhat openly about their views on the future of their jobs the Art Market.  It should be very interesting to hear.. See you there!

Here are the details.... For more info, you can also go to The FIT website...  

A discussion of the current state of the art market
Yvonne Garcia - director of development, bronx museum
Florence Lynch - curator; director, florence lynch gallery
Paul Morris - vp of art properties, merchandise mart properties, inc. 
Lowell Pettit - lowell pettit art advisory; independent curator
Walter Robinson - editor, artnet magazine; critic; artist
Sheri Pasquarella, moderator - co-founder, new art dealersalliance (nada);
art consultant; faculty, fashion institute of technology
APRIL 22 at 7:00 - 8:30 PM
fashion institute of technology
katie murphy amphitheatre, pomerantz center for art and design,
seventh avenue at 27th street (D building)

(This event is free and open to the public)
Following years of wild expansion and commercial vitality, the last six months in the art world - as in all business sectors - have seen rocky auction and art fair sales, abrupt gallery closures and publicly expressed dealer woe. This discussion will assess the current state of the art market and the long-term picture for the industry.

April 17, 2009

The Aperture Foundation Summer Party.. Tickets (with a Print) on Sale Now!

The Aperture Foundation Summer Party.. Tickets on Sale Now!

So my little MAO-ettes... Here's a great opportunity for you!

The Aperture Foundation has commissioned photographer Thomas Allen to do a special photo just for their big summer benefit party.  So they are selling a limited number of tickets (only 250) for their party that come with a free print for too cheaponly $150.  So even if you can't make it to the party on Thursday June 18th from 8pm to 11pm it's still worth getting a ticket for the print!

You can buy your tickets Here : Aperture : Some Like It Hot Party Now!

You can view works by Artist Thomas Allen here.

The party will feature a performance by the band The Willowz, who did the music for the cool movies, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, and The Science of Sleep.

They will also have a big raffle, with lots of cool prizes, but the Grand Prize winner will receive a very valuable 30" x 40" print from a private commissioned portrait session taken by a MAO favorite photographer, Matthew Pillsbury! Amazing! Plus the Raffle tickets are only $10...Sweet!


April 16, 2009

Robert Adams Wins the 2009 Hasselblad Foundation Award

The photographer Robert Adams has won the 2009 Hasselblad Foundadion Award today.

Robert Adams follows in a truly great tradition of Art photography excellence by winning this award. The past winners of this prestigious Hasselblad Foundation International Award in Photography have included Graciela Iterbide 2008, Nan Goldin 2007, Lee Friedlander 2005, Jeff Wall 2002, Cindy Sherman 1999, William Eggleston 1998, Robert Frank 1996, and Susan Meiselas 1994 just to name drop a few.

Robert_Adams_newwest_bookFrom the Hasselblad website... The Award in Photography is an award granted to "a photographer recognized for major achievements".

Robert Adams, is probably most well know for his "quiet" photos of the terriblly ugly new suburban American West.  In his landmark 1974 book, The New West, with forward by MOMA curator John Szarkowski, Adams captured the rapidly changing face of American at a critical point in this Nations history.

(Photo #1, Book Cover of : Robert Adams, The New West, 1974, Colorado University Press) Here's a note from the Books publisher..

The New West can be accounted as one of the outstanding works of artistic photography since 1945. This series of 56 pictures stands in the tradition of such projects as Walker Evans' American Photographs (1938) and Robert Frank's The Americans (1958). The wide open spaces of the American West have all but disappeared. Robert Adam's legendary book The New West tells of what has taken their place: the destruction of a once grandiose landscape by settlement which imposed highways, cheap housing developments and the vacuous chaos of advertising signs in the cities." 

Our sincere MAO congrats to Robert Adams.

Here's a story posted by Niklas Magnusson of Bloomberg News


Robert Adams, U.S. Photographer, Wins $61,000 Hasselblad Award
2009-04-15 10:10:08.508 GMT

By Niklas Magnusson
     April 15 (Bloomberg) -- Robert Adams, the U.S. photographer
known for his images of the American west, has won the 2009
Hasselblad Foundation International Award in Photography.
     Adams, who is based in Astoria, Oregon, received the
500,000 kronor ($61,000) prize at a ceremony in San Francisco
yesterday, the foundation -- which is based in Gothenburg,
Sweden -- said in an e-mailed statement issued today. It
described Adams as “one of the most important and influential
photographers of the last 40 years.”
     “During that time, he has worked almost exclusively in the
American West, and, as photography has altered and fragmented,
he has refined and reaffirmed its inherent language, adapting
the legacies of 19th-century and modernist photography to his
own very singular purpose,” the foundation said.
     Victor Hasselblad, whose cameras were used for the stills
taken by astronaut Neil Armstrong during his 1969 lunar landing,
donated 78 million kronor in his will for research in the
natural sciences and photography. Victor’s wife Erna started the
foundation in 1979, a year after his death. Last year’s winner
was Graciela Iturbide, while Nan Goldin won in 2007.

For Related News and Information:
Top culture stories: TOP MUSE <GO>
Today’s main news from the Nordic region: TOP SCAND

--Editors: Farah Nayeri, Mark Beech.

April 15, 2009

Robert Mann Gallery Leaving Chelsea for the Upper East Side..

The Robert Mann Gallery is Leaving Chelsea for the Upper East Side..

Well.. maybe it's just a sign of the times.. but this week one of the most well respected Art Photography Dealers announced they are leaving their great space in Chelsea for the stuffy Upper East Side.

But, do people expect to see and buy new contemporary art photography on 81st street on the upper east side?

Well..Maybe.. We shall see!

We wish Robert Mann all the best at their new location.. MAO and Chelsea will miss you!

Here's the Press Release... Chelsea R.I.P.?


Robert_mann_Gallery_relocation Robert Mann Gallery is pleased to announce the exciting news of its relocation to Manhattan's Upper East Side. Returning to the neighborhood where it all began in the mid-1980s, the gallery will reside in a limestone mansion at 24 East 81st Street, one block from the Metropolitan Museum of Art, six blocks from the Whitney Museum of American Art, and right in the heart of the prestigious Upper East Side neighborhood.

"I began my gallery in 1985 in a townhouse on East 76th Street, staying there for 14 years," says Robert Mann. "In 1999 we were among the first wave of art galleries to settle in Chelsea, and the first photography gallery to do so. The move to Chelsea enabled us to expand our program to include large scale contemporary works, some of which pushed the boundaries of traditional photography. Operating one of the largest photography galleries in New Yorkhas been both challenging and rewarding. We've been able to successfully exhibit and manage the careers of many artists who started with us back in the 1980s, as well as introducing many younger artists. During this time we have benefited from the luxury of incredible space and neighborhood support.

"After 10 years in Chelsea, the gallery is ready for a change. We will continue to present exhibitions of contemporary and classical works, promoting the careers of our contemporary artists within the broader context of photographic history. The Upper East Side is a supportive neighborhood that I know well and has the benefit of proximity to many of our clients and the institutions with which we work."

Following Mary Mattingly's exhibition, Nomadographies, closing May 23, we will be available by appointment only until further notice. We look forward to welcoming you to our new location!

Please continue to contact us via the following:
[email protected]
T 212.989.7600
F 212.989.2947
210 Eleventh Avenue New York NY 10001(between 24th & 25th Streets) | Tel 212.989.7600 | Fax 212.989.2947
Hours: Tuesday-Saturday 11am-6pm | [email protected] | robertmann.com | © 2009 Robert Mann Gallery

April 03, 2009

Nan Goldin Selling Several Personal Items At Christies Paris...

Nan Goldin is selling some of her personal items At Christies Paris on April 7th...

OK.. for all those Nan Goldin photography fans and fanatics (like MAO).. you have to see this! AMAZING!

Keeping in the spirit of, Her Art is Nan's Life (or is that, Her Life is her Art ?).. now is your chance to buy some of the very personal items from the life of legendary photographer Nan Goldin.

Nan is selling about 25 lots in an up coming "Arts Decratifs 16eme au 19eme Et Histoire Naturelle" at their Paris Auction house. This auction is a total kitchen sink of items, but Lots 97 thru to Lot 122 are all from the home of Nan Goldin.  There is no specific reason in the auction catalog for her selling these items.. just that it's stuff she's collected, and it was now time to sell them all.

And, well.. let's just say.. they are very "Interesting" items.. and maybe give a little extra in-site into the crazylife of Photographer Nan Goldin. We're still trying to figure out what in the world this one is...Lot 102 and what is she doing with it?

Nan_Goldin_dildo This lot (#122, pictured here..)is clearly The Grand Finale from her fascinating collection of insane fun stuff.. How can you pass this one up? Anyone have a bid?

Lot 122 Description :


Estimated Price Range :  $265 - $398
En bois mouluré et lacqué noir, portant des inscriptions gravées et dorées, muni d'un trou de préhension
Longueur: 16 cm. (6¼ in.)


April 01, 2009

Sotheby's and Hedge Fund Billionaire Steven A. Cohen... in Bed Together?

Sotheby's and Hedge Fund Billionaire Steven A. Cohen... in bed together?

So starting on April 2nd, and running till April 14th.. Sotheby's will be "hosting" a show of Steven A. Cohen's private art collection. The show is titled "WOMEN" to include 20 works with all female subjects. For Details click here ==> Sotheby's sells out to big share holder.

This show, just so happens to almost coincide with Sotheby's big Spring Modern and Contemporary Art Auctions.. wow, what a strange coincidence.

The claim is none of the work will be offered for sale, and this is just Mr. Cohen's nice way of giving the little people public a chance to see his high end art collection.  And isn't it sweet of Sotheby's to do something soo generous for thier clients and public.

FYI, there were rumors Mr. Cohen was trying to sell several works of Art just a few months ago. He had reportedly consigned at least 8 paintings to NY dealers, and once the art market crashed he had pulled the consigned work from art dealers.

Also of note.. after a recent stock purchase, Mr. Cohen, now owns over 5.76% of Sotheby's...making Steven the 3rd largest owner in the auction house. 

Richard_Prince_Graduate_Nurse_02 So.. we guess there are other ways to dump an art collection skin a cat.

Hmmm... Maybe the page from the Billionaire Art Opportunist Collector playbook could be :

  • Step 1.. Buy lots of Art, push prices way up, and tell everyone who'll listenin the media you're a wise long term buyer.

  • (Photo #1, Richard Prince, "Graduate Nurse, 2002",Ink jet print and acrylic on canvas,89 in x 52 in.   FYI... A description from Sotheby's.. "This work is one of the best paintings Prince ever made, particularly because of its monumental scale and the rich, painterly quality of the brushstrokes")

  • Step 2.. Buy an art auction house (or a Whopping controlling interest in one),

  • Step 3.. Stage a show of the great works having auction house experts tout your collection..

  • Step 4..Tell everyone these art works, on proud display, are not for sale

  • Step 5... Wait for someone stupid enough to say.. I wish I could have a collection like the one by this well known art collector, which just happens to be on display in the auction house.

  • Step 6.. To be determined.... Hmm.. possibly.. Cash out..??   

Which reminds MAO of an Art joke...

Q:  How does one sell 100 Million Dollars worth of Contemporary Art?

A:  First Buy $200 million of Contemporary Art.. and then try to sell it!

OUCH! OK.. Well.. Maybe MAO is just being a bit too much of a bitch cynic... What do you think? Nice of Mr. Cohen and Sotheb'ys.. or totally self serving ?

Anyway.. here's a story by Lindsay Pollock of Bloomberg News wrote...


 SAC’s Cohen Shows Off $137 Million ‘Woman’ at Sotheby’s Exhibit
2009-04-01 04:01:00.25 GMT

By Lindsay Pollock and Philip Boroff
     April 1 (Bloomberg) -- Steven Cohen, who runs the $14
billion hedge-fund manager SAC Capital Advisors, is raising his
profile as an art collector with an unusual loan show at
Sotheby’s in New York.
     Starting tomorrow, the auction house will display 20 rarely
seen works by such artists as Andy Warhol and Vincent van Gogh.
They have a combined market value of about $450 million, dealers
say. The pieces, owned by Cohen and his wife, Alexandra, all
depict women.
     Auction houses often host special exhibitions to showcase
sales in advance. In this case, Sotheby’s and Cohen say the show
will offer nothing for sale, although it does coincide with
Cohen’s increasingly close ties to the auctioneer.
     As of March 6, SAC owned 5.9 percent of the company, up
from 4.6 percent on Dec. 31, according to filings with the
Securities and Exchange Commission.
     Cohen, 52, has paid large sums as he built up a major art
collection. He’s best known as the 2004 buyer of Damien Hirst’s
$8 million formaldehyde-soaked shark, on loan to New York’s
Metropolitan Museum of Art.
     More recently, he snagged two pieces by Jeff Koons,
including the shiny 9-foot-tall “Hanging Heart (Violet/Gold)”
sculpture, according to people familiar with the transaction.
Another heart from the same series fetched $23.6 million at
Sotheby’s in 2007.
     Last year, Cohen consigned at least eight paintings to New
York dealers to sell, among them works by Willem de Kooning,
and Pablo Picasso. He hoped to raise money for a major
purchase that -- as financial markets tumbled -- he ultimately
decided not to make, according to sources close to Cohen. They
declined to disclose his target.

                      ‘Business Prospects’

     The Sotheby’s exhibition has provoked curiosity. “Cohen is
doing what he can to improve business prospects at Sotheby’s,”
said William N. Goetzmann, a former museum director and Yale
School of Management professor. “He is improving the value of
his art by showcasing it in a dramatic fashion.”
     With the art market in a funk, Sotheby’s and Christie’s
International are scrounging for goods to sell in the May
auctions, auction house sources say.
     Sotheby’s is publishing a 48-page hardbound illustrated
color catalog, with an essay by art historian Joachim Pissarro.
And it has allocated prime 10th-floor exhibition space to Cohen
for a week-and-a-half, twice as long as the house ordinarily
devotes to profit-making auction previews.
     During the past decade, Cohen, based in
, has bought voraciously, acquiring through art
adviser Sandy Heller and dealers including Gagosian Gallery,
Acquavella Galleries and the firm Giraud Pissarro Segalot.

                         Eclectic Tastes

     The Sotheby’s exhibition reveals Cohen as a man of eclectic
tastes, who chased down a wide range of major artworks, buying
at auction and from other collectors including Steve Wynn and
David Geffen.
     “It’s an opportunity to see works that everyone has been
talking about and not a lot of people have seen,” said Tom L.
Freudenheim, a former assistant secretary for museums at the
Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C.
     The show includes the 1952-53 de Kooning “Woman III,”
acquired from Geffen for $137 million, as well as Cezanne’s dour
1900 “Portrait of a Woman,” which Cohen acquired for $10
million at Christie’s in 2004. Other auction booty includes
Marlene Dumas’s 10-foot-wide “The Visitor,” purchased at
Sotheby’s in London for a record $6.3 million last July.
     Last summer, as Cohen prepared to make the mysterious major
purchase, he approached Sotheby’s about selling a group of
artworks in the November auctions -- including a work by Koons
and a painting by Maurice de Vlaminck -- valued at around $100
million, according to dealers and auction-house sources. The
group was ultimately not put up for sale.
     The works he withdrew from sale at private galleries in
Manhattan included Picasso’s “Homme a la Pipe,” insured for
$20 million, and currently on view at Gagosian Gallery.
     “The Cohens are continually refining their collection when
the opportunity presents itself,” explained spokesman Jonathan

--Editors: Manuela Hoelterhoff, Jeffrey Burke.

March 20, 2009

It's not too late to get your VIP Tickets to the AIPAD preview next week!

It's not too late to get your VIP MoMA Tickets to the AIPAD preview next week!

For those MAO readers who've not had enough of art fairs..next week starts the 29th Annual AIPAD Fair.

2009_AIPAD_FAIRFor those who don't know.. AIPAD is the foremost exhibition and longest running Art Fair dedicated to fine art photography in the USA. It takes place at the Uptown (67th street) Park Avenue Armory.

This year promises to be a particularly challenging an interesting photography fair.  As expected, in this terrible economy, they've had a difficult time filling all the expensive booths in the up town Armory..

So AXA Art Insurance, three high quality Photography Bookshops, and several non-AIPAD (think young and innovative) photo dealers will be presenting at this years AIPAD fair.   

Even The George Eastman House, from Rochester, NY will have a booth!

The show opens with their VIP MoMA Benefit Preview night on Wednesday March 25th, and will run until Sunday March 29th.

Sponsor Ticket:$500. Includes one ticket, an AIPAD catalog, preview hours from 6:30 to 9:00 p.m., cocktail buffet and desserts, and one run-of-show pass.

Friend Ticket:$100. Includes one ticket, an AIPAD catalog, preview hours from 7:30 to 9:00 p.m., desserts, and one run-of-show pass

March 12, 2009

Armory Art Fair Week - The MAO Standouts from the Volta Art Fair 2009

Armory Art Fair Week - The MAO Standouts from the Volta Art Fair 2009

So many of our MAO Art scouts said the Volta fair was not as good this year.
We actually liked it. We love Art Fairs with solo shows..it's one of the best ways to get to know the work on a new artist in our not so humble opinion.

We only got to Volta on Sunday morning (the last possible day), and it didn't look like much was sold out at the fair. Every booth, even the best ones had work left. But we guess it's just a sign of the times.

_a Well.. here were the MAO high points...

And, so sorry for the delay...in getting this post recap up.. but. it's been a busy few weeks for MAO.

There will be more to come over the next few days.. we did manage to get to all the Major Art Fairs, and there are several artists we still wanted to point out to readers.

1. Taro Nasu Gallery from Japan, showing paintings by Futo Akiyoshi.
These were small, almost mono-chrome gold paintings. Gold on gold.. but sometimes simple also sings. These little jems were great.

They had depth, texture and drama. Sometimes it's impressive what a real painter can do with just a little gold and canvas.

(Photo #1, by Futo Akiyoshi, 12" x 10", Oil on canvas)

2. The Loock Galerie from Berlin showing photography work by Charlie White.
The show was called "Girl Studies." Some totally witty brilliant photography, and hysterical video. Plus, we just loved his bright pink walled booth. Also Charlie White has a new book out, Charlie White : American Minor...well worth checking out.

(photo #2, by Charlie White, 2 color c-prints)

3. T20 Gallery from Spain showing a video work by Kaoru Katayama.
This simple video short had us totally entertained.

It was just 2 traditionally dressed women dancing in their traditional style to some modern hypnotic trance club music.. but it completely worked.. We laughed, we cried..

4. Walter Maciel Gallery of Colver City CA, showing several sculptures by Margarita CabreraCharlie_white_Girl_Studies.
These were a series of ornately decorated farming equipment turned into adobe clay sculptures.

(photo #3, Margarita Cabrera, "Saw" 2008, Ceramic, and Slip Paint)

Margarita_cabrera_clay_saw5. Thierry Goldberg Projects from NYC showing paintings by Hayv Kahraman.
At times these paintings all look a bit like John Currin doing his best imitation of Asian art.

But these paintings somehow work. The more time we looked at them, the more their magic emerged.

(Photo #4, Hayv Kahraman, Oil on Canvas).

So.. my little MAO-ettes, more to come of NYC Art Fair MANIA tomorrow..


March 04, 2009

A few things NOT to miss during NYC Art Fair Mania this Week

A few things not to miss during NYC Art Fair Mania Week.

Jeremy_Kost_collage Yes.. it's going to be a crazy few days of Art Mania.. with tons of art events fighting for your every dollar VIP time.

But there were a few "MAO Must" things to see this week among all the millions of Art events. And FYI... these are extra special, cause these are all FREE!

1. Matthew Pillsbury's show at The French Institute Alliance Francaise.
The show is called "An American in the City of Light" at 22 East 60th street.
MAO got a sneak peak yesterday, and it's possibly Matthews best work to date.
There are about 15 new wondrous photo works in the show, you've never seen Paris like this before.
Check it out.. The show is up until April 18th.

2. Jeremy Kost at the Dactyl Foundation in Soho. 64 Grand Street, just east of West Broadway.
This latest Kost project is curated by Tim Goossens (PS1), "After the Party".

So, we were at the jammed wild happening preview party last night.. the work is impressive and provocative. Jeremy continues his intense exploration of hot male objectification with his usual flair. (Photo #1, Male Collage by Jeremy Kost, 16" x 10", 6 Unique Polaroids)
The show is impressive in scale with several hundred male hustler model Polaroid photos all taken in the course of a few nights days, but still the show manages to have a light jovial feeling. Jeremy has once again succeeded in capturing that fleeting feeling of male youth and beauty like no one else.
The show is only up for a week, so see it before it comes down on March 21th.

Vanessa_Beecroft_VB64 3.VANESSA BEECROFT | VB64 PERFORMANCE/SCULPTURE, Friday March 6th, 7 to 10pm.

We've never before seen a live Vanessa Beecroft performance in the flesh.. but we will this Friday night !

MARCH 6 - 29, 2009



(212) 343-7300

February 26, 2009

Kamrooz Aram.. A MAO favorite artist makes the Cover of Art In America

Kamrooz Aram.. A MAO favorite artist makes the cover of Art In America this month.

So we've long been a fan of the bright colored exotic Persian influenced paintings of Kamrooz Aram. Kamrooz was by far the biggest up and  coming star, of the now, just Gallery Road Kill of the Great Art Recession of 2009 a fond memory, but uber cool, Oliver Kamm 5BE Gallery .

While this will not be a big surprise to many wise long time MAO readers. We've blogged about Kamrooz before. But this month, Kamrooz Aram's art career hits a new high, with the opening of his solo show at the Perry Rubenstein Gallery, as well as his huge feature story on the cover of Art In America this month.

Kamrooz_Art_in_America The solo show, now up until April 9th at the Perry Rubenstein Gallery, is probably his strongest yet. You'll also see that he's a man of many talents. For this show, Kamrooz has also produced some amazing drawings along side his paintings. If you're not into paying the huges prices for traditional oil on canvas type paintings, these drawing are well worth checking out!

Congrat's to Kamrooz! We love your work.. and we should probably take the lovely painting of yours we have in the MAO collection out of storage and actually put it up for auction up on the wall for all to see in the MAO loft.

If you don't subscribe to Art In America.. you can read the full 11 page story here!

Art in America (March 2009)
Kamrooz Aram: Uneasy Delights

The lush paintings in this Iranian-born artist's current exhibition draw on a global range of imagery both sacred and profane, as well as a deep well of dream-born hybrids. BY GARY INDIANA

February 23, 2009

MAO Art Buy of the Month... a new Multiple from Compound Editions

MAO Art Buy of the Month...  a new multiple from Compound Editions is now available!
So.. today we have something egg-stra special for my little Art Buying MAO-ettes.

Some of you may already have read about this new wonderful series of editioned contemporary art called, Compound Editions. Here's their website for the project. It's been hatched as the brain child of Gallery / Art Blogger extra-ordinarier Edward Winkleman, and the innovative chicks at the Schroeder Romero Gallery. Known to their art friends as WinkleSchRoe.. or was that SchroRoWink? Anyway...for those who don't know, these 2 galleries rule the roost down there at the dead far west end of 27th street in Chelsea.

FYI, this new collaboration. is only a 4 month old project. But Compound Editions has already garnered some very impressive attention from both, Art & Auction Magazine, plus this month's Art In America!  Wow, these art hustlers bright gallerist sure do work fast!

Andy_Yoder_All_Your_Eggs So the contemporary art market may have already killed the goose.. but there's still a few golden eggs left to be had by astute collectors!

Just a few days ago, Compound Edition already released their Second Artist Multiple.

This time it has been created by the thoughtful conceptual artist, Andy Yoder, and you can rest assured this one is going over easy!

We at MAO have recently learned this edition is already more than half sold out.

Well, we can certainly see why, sculptor Andy Yoder has created a hard to boil pass up, totally witty, must have, art object. It's friendly, familiar and it has perfectly scrambled encapsulated the uneasy feelings during these difficult times in the Art World.

This edition consists of 3 gilded golden eggs, neatly nestled in a pile of shredded US currency..all encased in a cute little protective wooden (Pine?) box. The object is titled "All Your Eggs." And we just love it..you might say we're a bit eggs-tatic over here at MAO with this one!

Andy Yoder
All Your Eggs
4.25" x 7.25" x 7.25"

23 carat gold, clay, wood, excelsior, and shredded U.S. currency
Edition of 100, plus 10 APs.
$100.00 each

You can read more about these projects here... www.compound-editions.blogspot.com and you can see more of Andy Yoder's work here on his artist website.

So, to get your own little Andy Yoder art nest eggs..just email them ASAP at

[email protected]

cause this one will not last..even in this terrible slowing economy.

It's been frequently stated on wall street, "This economy is worse than a painful divorce, cause you have lost half your total net worth and you're still stuck with your wife!"  So everyone, try to look on the sunny side, MAO knows, your stock portfolios maybe all cracked up, and your 401k is now only a 201k..but at least with only $100 bucks, you can still afford enjoy a cool new original work of contemporary art!

February 19, 2009

ADAA Art Fair Opened last night.. in the Eye of the Storm.

ADAA Art Fair Opened last night.. in the Eye of the Storm. The 21st ADAA Art Show at the uptown 67th Street, Armory.

Arthur_rothstein_Dust_Storm_1936 So last night was the big daddy of NYC art fairs.. and for the first time in several years, MAO didn't attend last nights preview party for the ADAA art fair.  Mostly cause we didn't want to waste the money time and be around lots of grumpy people bitching  saying how bad the economy has become. We listen to that all day long in our office!  

Well, it sounds like a lot more of the same for this art fair. Slow gallery sales..being met with collectors questioning these super high prices while looking for bargains.

(photo by Arthur Rothstein, "Fleeing a dust storm". Farmer Arthur Coble and sons walking in the face of a dust storm, Cimmaron County, Oklahoma. April, 1936,Library of Congress)

Plus, all us NYC Wall Street fat cat types have been putting in very long office hours the last 2 years, so taking time out to attend high attitude art fairs is not exactly a major priority for most people!

Anyway.. it doesn't sound like we missed much. We've been told everything will still be there (unsold) on Saturday afternoon when we have time to check out the ADAA art fair. 

Geeeze..is it just MAO.. or is this country starting to feel like it's in a depression already?

Here's a report by Bloomberg's Katya Kazakina.


Art Show Opens in N.Y. With Less Hedge-Fund Money for Picasso
2009-02-19 04:56:23.637 GMT

By Katya Kazakina
     Feb. 19 (Bloomberg) -- At the Art Show last year, dealer
Richard L. Feigen offered an $8.5 million Pablo Picasso still
life. This year, he’s highlighting less expensive art, including
a $90,000 purple teapot painting by Georges Braque.
     “The guys with the bonuses and hedge funds won’t be
throwing money around,” he said. “There are a lot of things at
lower price levels than in the past.”
     The opening gala for the annual fair at the Park Avenue
Armory in Manhattan proceeded last night without its sponsor, the
bankrupt Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc., and with the expectation
of fewer sales than last year.
     Last night’s benefit for social services agency
Henry Street
felt muted compared with the frenzied atmosphere of
the past three years, when collectors rushed in to snap up
multimillion dollar artworks, which include paintings, drawings,
photographs and sculpture.
     Among those who checked out the fair, which runs through
Sunday, were Donald Marron, chief executive officer of buyout
firm Lightyear Capital LLC, Stephen Schwarzman, CEO of
LP, tennis player John McEnroe,
Museum of Modern Art
Glenn Lowry, philanthropist Agnes Gund and former Walt
Disney Co. President Michael Ovitz.

                            First Lap

     “It’s our first lap,” said New York collector Jeff Grant,
who was with his wife, Madeline. While several works caught their
eye, they were not in a rush to buy.
     “Before we make a decision we do our homework,” he said.
“It’s got to be right.”
     Several dealers among the 70 with booths reported meager
sales or none at all. Patrons -- the women wearing large jewels
and the men dressed in suits -- spent as much time eating thumb-
size vegetable dumplings, Peking duck in scallion pancakes and
pulled pork sandwiches as they did perusing the art.
     “Everyone is paralyzed,” said dealer Per Skarstedt. “It
has to be either rare or inexpensive or both.”
     Skarstedt Gallery sold only one work: a photograph by
priced at $600,000. An $800,000 car hood by
and a $2.1 million “Mao” by Andy Warhol were still
available by the end of the evening. So was a striking, orange-
hued painting of a stripper “Cleaning the Pole” (2000) by
Marlene Dumas. The work’s asking price is $1.8 million, almost
double the amount it fetched just four months ago at
Phillips de
& Co.’s auction in London.
     Among the unsold high-end works for sale are Picasso’s 1906
gouache of his mistress Fernande Olivier. Acquavella Galleries is
asking $6 million for it.

                          Freud Etching

     Acquavella, which represents Lucian Freud, the most
expensive living artist at auction, also is selling one of his
2007 etchings for $45,000.
     Feigen’s most expensive item is a $2 million white canvas by
Lucio Fontana. His next most expensive item is a $550,000
     The show’s organizer, the
Art Dealers Association of
, said it’s expecting attendance to remain as strong as
last year despite a dismal global economy and a plummeting art
     “We all know the days of wild sales when booths were sold
out within 20 minutes -- that era is over,” said Linda Blumberg,
the association’s executive director, adding that “the first-
rate work and smaller, more intimate atmosphere of the fair will
accrue to our benefit.”

                          Customer Appeal

     As collectors retreat and many galleries have reduced staff
or closed outright, the ADAA has encouraged participants to
appeal to customers in a more creative way.
     “Ten, 15 years ago, people would have had their inventory
on the walls,” said Roland Augustine, president of the ADAA.
“I’ve encouraged member-dealers to think more about the
aesthetics and the curatorial approach. I think it serves the
artist and the gallery better.”
     As a result, 24 dealers are focusing on the work of a single
artist, up from 18 last year.
     PaceWildenstein gallery is exhibiting gouaches by the late
minimalist artist Sol LeWitt. Made over three decades, the works
show snaking, overlaid basic washes of red, yellow, blue and
black. Ranging in price from $40,000 to $200,000, the pieces were
still available last night.
     “This particular fair is one of the best barometers of the
art world,” said Matthew Armstrong, curator of Marron’s
collection. He bought nothing.

      The Art Show runs through Sunday at the Park Avenue Armory,
Park Avenue at 67th Street. Admission is $20. Information:

February 12, 2009

The Christies Contemporary Art Sale in London...goes as Expected

The Christies Contemporary Art Sale in London...goes Down as expected.

Well..The results are in, and it wasn't exactly a strong auction.

The one silver lining was that so far, Contemporary Art Photography seems to be holding in well.

Andreas_Gursky_Prada_III One Example.. (Photo 1, Andreas Gursky, Prada III, 1989, 67 x 118 inches)  The one big photo lot was #27 and it sold for more than the already lowered  presale estimate. 

  • Andreas Gursky

  • Prada III (1989) Color coupler print mounted on Diesec in wooden artist frame.

  • Presale Estimate : 180,000 - 220,000 British Pound Sterling

  • Actual Hammer price : 225,000 Sterling + Auction House Premium

  • Total Sale Price : 271,250 Sterling

But is sounds like the rest of the big evening  sale was almost a total bust not very strong!

Check it out.. The website, ChelseaArtGalleries.com does a great job with post auction analysis

Here's a story by Scott Reyburn of Bloomberg News...


Christie’s Sale Total Halves; $12.2 Million Rothko, Bacon Fail
2009-02-12 01:02:44.150 GMT

By Scott Reyburn
     Feb. 12 (Bloomberg) -- Francis Bacon and
Mark Rothko
went unsold last night as nervous bidders paid only
half the amount Christie’s International estimated it would raise
in its first test of the contemporary-art market in 2009.
     The two pictures -- the only works valued at more than 2
million pounds -- had been estimated by Christie’s to sell for a
total of as much as 8.5 million pounds ($12.2 million) in London.
Both failed to attract a single bid. The auction total of 7
million pounds was below the presale low estimate of 14.5 million
pounds, both based on hammer prices.
     Dealers said contemporary-art prices have dropped between 30
and 50 percent over the last six months during the bank crisis
and economic slump, deterring buyers and sellers. Christie’s
ended up with its lowest total at a February auction of
contemporary art in London since 2004.
     “I was surprised by the number of unsolds,” Offer Waterman,
a London-based dealer, said in an interview. “The material
wasn’t as strong as last week and the mood was down. There were a
lot of empty seats in the room.”
     Seventy-nine percent of a shrunken offering of just 29 lots
found buyers. The auction, conducted by Jussi Pylkkanen,
Christie’s European president, was over in 36 minutes. Its total
of 8.4 million pounds with fees was 88 percent below the 72.9
million pounds achieved at the equivalent auction last year,
where a Bacon triptych sold for 26.3 million pounds ($51.5
million). Sotheby’s 17.9 million-pound contemporary-art auction
on Feb. 5 was 81 percent down on 2008.
     “The markets hate uncertainty,” said Amy Cappellazzo,
Christie’s deputy chairman, Americas. “Steadiness hasn’t yet
been achieved.”

                            Bacon Hope

     Bacon’s 1954 picture, “Man in Blue VI,” had been in the
same private collection since 1971 and had been expected to sell
for between 4 million pounds and 5 million pounds.
     The 5-foot-high canvas has a large dark background and a
small, blurred figure. It was one of seven paintings Bacon made
of an unknown man with whom the artist had an affair while living
in the Imperial Hotel, Henley-on-Thames, England. Unusually, the
image was painted from life, rather than from photographs, as was
Bacon’s normal practice, said Christie’s. It had never previously
been offered at auction.
     “The Bacon was perhaps too academic for the public and was
perhaps estimated too high,” said Pilar Ordovas, Christie’s
European deputy chairman of contemporary art.

                            Green, Blue

     Six lots later, Rothko’s 1968 abstract, “Green, Blue, Green
on Blue” failed to sell. The 3-foot 4-inch high work on paper
laid down on canvas had been expected to fetch between 2.5
million pounds and 3.5 million pounds, the London-based auction
house said.
     It was not fresh to the market, having been sold for $6.1
million at Christie’s in New York as recently as November 2007.
This put off potential buyers, said Christie’s.
     With the two highest-estimated lots failing, Jeff Koons’s
2003 playfully computer-manipulated 9-foot-high oil on canvas,
“Monkeys (Ladder),” led the auction with a low-estimate price
of 1.4 million pounds with fees paid by Gagosian Gallery, Koons’s
     The U.S. dollar price was almost exactly half the $4 million
the similar-sized and similarly painted 2000 Koons canvas,
“Cheeky,” raised at Sotheby’s in New York in November.
     A Koons stainless-steel sculpture of a model railroad car
filled with bourbon, from the artist’s 1986 “Luxury and
Degradation” series, sold to a telephone bid for 445,250 pounds
against a low estimate of 400,000 pounds. In May 2008, another
railroad car from Koons’s same limited-edition series sold at
Christie’s, New York, for $1.9 million.

                           Smiley Faces

     Takashi Murakami’s 5-foot diameter “Flower Ball (Brown)”
painting, featuring more than two dozen of the Japanese artist’s
trademark flower smiley faces, sold for 397,250 pounds against an
estimate of 300,000 pounds to 500,000 pounds. In February last
year another, identically sized “Flower Ball” painting in red
sold for $1.65 million at Sotheby’s in New York.
     Richard Prince’s artist’s proof of his 4-foot-wide 2001
limited edition photo, “Untitled (Cowboy),” showing a mounted
cowboy riding past a pond, failed to sell against a low estimate
of 240,000 pounds.
     Only three of the evening’s 29 lots sold for hammer prices
of more than the high estimate. Among these, the 10-foot-wide
Andreas Gurskycolor-coupler-print photograph, “Prada III,”
featuring rows of black woolen jumpers in a display case, managed
a hammer price of 225,000 pounds, translating to 271,250 with
auction house fees. From an edition of six, this had a high
estimate of 220,000 pounds. Like the Murakami, it was bought by a
telephone bidder.
     Christie’s said 66 percent of the buyers were from Europe,
27 percent from the U.S., 4 percent from the U.K. and 4 percent
from Asia.
     Christie’s charges a premium of 25 percent on the hammer
price up to and including 25,000 pounds, 20 percent up to and
including 500,000 pounds and 12 percent for more than 500,000

     (Scott Reyburn writes about the art market for
Bloomberg News. Opinions expressed are his own.)



February 03, 2009

Yet another "news" story about NYC Art Gallery Closings...

Yet another "news" story about NYC Art Gallery closings...

Cindy_sherman_clowns_04 Today Bloomberg news decided it had to also have their own Art Recession news story.

Just a few MAO thoughts on the material points in this "news" story..

1. So, ONLY 4 NYC art galleries have closed since Sept.

This is a Big deal? It sounds like Art galleries are doing considerably better than most industries in NYC.  Did you see this blog post, listing the HUGE number of  NYC Restaurants which have closed, over 40 just since Jan 1?

2. Imi Knoebel works priced at Mary Boone Gallery for $170,000 to $325,000 had not been sold.. Hello.. SO? Did you see this show? Are they crazy???? MAO would call that, Total Common Sense.. not the result of a recession.

3. Hiroshi Sugimoto photographs at Gagosian Gallery have had their prices reduced from $450,000 to $360,000.    Gasp... like what is that?  

Even at $360,000, MAO would consider that price to be totally RIDICULOUS for a new Sugimoto photograph! While MAO loves some of Sugimoto's work.. there's NO WAY in any sane world, anyone but a total fool  would pay $360,000 for a single Sugimoto photograph.

We love this Gagosian press release quote..

In 1980 he began working on an ongoing series of photographs of the sea and its horizon in locations all over the world, using an old-fashioned large-format camera to make exposures of varying duration....  

By returning to the same subject repeatedly, he reveals the subtleties that he.....

Perhaps, That "HE," Sugimoto, hasn't managed to do anything new or original in years? Except raise his prices beyond reality? Ok.. maybe MAO is being a bit harsh.. So no disrespect to Sugi...but we're just saying...Hmm..it's something to think about.   Should a single newly printed Sugimoto photo sell for more than the average price of a house in most parts of the U.S. ?  Maybe MAO is missing something..?  like an extra $360,000 to burn on a new and dull Sugimoto photograph.

4. Cindy Sherman's last show at Metro Pictures wasn't the sellout it would have been a year ago. Actually.. this was Cindy's best work in years.. but still not that great.   So MAO is glad they sold some.. but again.. selling out photo editions for over $100,000/print by a living and printing artists, should never have been the norm. No? 

(Photo #1, by Cindy Sherman, Untitled, 2004, c-print)

OK.. well.. Offically, for the record, We at MAO are very sad to see the Guild & Greyshkul Gallery go bye-bye. We always loved their gallery.. and we wish them all the best in their futures endeavors.   

But just seeing a few (4+) art galleries close over the last few months in NYC is just not that bad nor that big a deal.   There were perhaps a few too many anyway. 

Plus.. Now, just think...  How many multi-billion dollar financial institutions have totally gone bust in the last few months..? Well, Here's one hint.. it was MORE than 4 !!  Can you say.. Bye bye, WAMU, Lehman Brothers, Bear Stearns, AIG, Merrill Lynch, Wachovia, etc.. MAO will miss you all ! 

Well..What do you think? Agree, or Is MAO just too old and bitter negative?

Anyway.. Here's the silly  Bloomberg news story from Katya Kazakina.


Gagosian’s $360,000 Photos Linger as Empty N.Y. Galleries Shut
2009-02-03 05:00:01.1 GMT

By KatyaKazakina
     Feb. 3 (Bloomberg) -- Guild & Greyshkul, one of the most
vibrant galleries in downtown Manhattan, is shutting down on Feb.
15, the latest casualty of the collapsing art market. Yet it
won’t go quietly.
     The Soho gallery’s last hurrah begins Thursday: a four-day
extravaganza featuring the work of 120 artists. The show is a
fitting end for an exhibition space known for nurturing young
     “I wake up at night thinking of what will happen to all the
people who do more experimental work, artists who are in the
beginning phases of their careers,” Johannes VanDerBeek, 26, one
of the owners, said. “We’ll be as flexible as we can be with
prices to get our artists a cushion of money.”
     Guild & Greyshkul’s financial woes, a result of slowing
sales and tanking prices, are growing commonplace in the art
world. Since September, four galleries have shut their doors:
Roebling Hall and Cohan and Leslie in Chelsea; Rivington Arms in
the East Village and 31 Grand on the Lower East Side.
     More established galleries are hurting, too. They’re firing
staff, dropping out of art fairs and extending their shows for
months in an attempt to cut expenses.
     “Galleries are just hanging on with their fingernails,”
said Matthew Armstrong, who curates the collection of Donald B.
Marron’s Lightyear Capital, a New York private equity firm.
     On a recent visit to Chelsea, Armstrong stopped by eight
     “I was the only person in at least seven of them,” he
said. “I wish the best to these guys, but it’s a little scary.”
     Two weeks into its show of veteran German artist
, Mary Boone’s Chelsea gallery hadn’t sold any of the
seven works, priced between $170,000 and $325,000.

                         Reduced Prices

     At the Gagosian Gallery on West 21st Street, Japanese
photographer Hiroshi Sugimoto’s exhibition, which opened on Nov.
6, 2008, has been extended through March 7. The prices of some of
his meditative seascapes have been reduced from $450,000 to
$360,000, with plenty still available, the gallery said.
     Cindy Sherman’s November exhibition at Metro Pictures did
well, said gallery co-owner Helene Winer, but it wasn’t the
sellout it would have been a year ago.
     “Some of our big collectors said they weren’t buying, and I
was shocked,” she said.
     Since its founding in 2003, Guild & Greyshkul has attracted
an eclectic community of artists, collectors, curators and
critics. The partners -- VanDerBeek, his sister Sara VanDerBeek,
32, and their friend Anya Kielar, 30, -- are all artists with
successful careers.
     “They built a very culturally relevant program of both
critically and commercially well-received artists,” said New
York collector James Dorment, who has bought works by the
gallery’s artists Ernesto Caivano and Trenton Duerksen. “I tried
to see most of their shows. To me they were one of the most
interesting emerging galleries.”

                          No Profit

     Although Guild & Greyshkul has served a broad collector base
and put up new shows every four to five weeks, the gallery never
made a profit, VanDerBeek said. All the extra money went right
back into producing artists’ work.
     “We managed always to keep even,” he said. “And as we
were progressing, our exhibitions were getting more ambitious.”
     In 2007, Guild & Greyshkul began doing shows that
transformed the exhibit space. Artist Lisi Raskin installed a 30-
by-20-foot ceiling that hung 7 feet off the floor. Coupled with
orange light and a long apocalyptic drawing stretching around the
entire space, the installation completely distorted the gallery
     The gallery’s overhead has averaged about $25,000 a month in
the past three years. Since September, covering those costs has
become increasingly difficult, VanDerBeek said.
     “Sales when they did occur were at steep discounts on works
that were mostly under $20,000,” VanDerBeek said. “People said
they loved the pieces, but they were just not buying them.”

     (Katya Kazakina is a reporter for Bloomberg News. The
opinions expressed are her own.)

January 30, 2009

MAO Interviewed.. Twice.. about the Art Market Recession...

MAO Interviewed.. twice.. about the Art Market Recession...

That's right my little MAO-ettes.. when MAO talks... people run for cover listen.

Jill_Greenberg_Revelations In these tough economic times.. everyone is whining about asking the same questions..

Will the Art Market Crash? Will Every Chelsea Art Gallery Close? Why wont the Government Bail out the Art World? Is now a good time to add to or dump sell my collection?

Clearly no one knows where the art world is going.. (Photo by Jill Greenberg, Revelations, 2005, Archival pigment print, 50 x 43 inches)

But yesterday.. posted on Hrag Vartanian's blog (as well as the NYFA magazine site) was a super insightful story featuring some of the loudest, most worried, biggest PR hounds most respected and brightest minds in the art world...

Some how Of course... MAO was interviewed for this article!

The full story is posted on the New York Foundation fo the Arts on-line Magazine.

You can find Hrag's great blog here : http://hragvartanian.com/2009/01/29/nyfa-current/

OK.. That was the first amazing MAO story...

But, there's actually a second and much better one....

So today..

 "The Current State of the Art Market Series Part 6 with Art Collector/Fellow Art Blogger MAO" where MAO is interviewed by our friend, collector and art blogger, the totally omnipresent RUBEN Natal-San Miguel..

For those who missed it... Ruben has already posted several of these interviews with : 

You can check out Ruben's website www.ArtMostFierce.blogspot.com

But today, saving the best for last..

You can click here to laugh at read The Full MAO interview..

January 27, 2009

Save the dates.. Paul Graham, and Jamel Shabazz free public Photography Lectures..

Save the dates.. Photographers Paul Graham, and Jamel Shabazz give free public lectures..

Some of the best things in NYC are free.. and in this shit crashing economy recession.. also a cheapstimulating date!  Both are 2 photographers who's books, and photographic work we just can't get enough of. So MAO has already put February 3rd, and February 9th on our photo art obsessed calendar. 

See you there!

1. February 3th.. Jamel Shabazz at Powerhouse Books in Brooklyn.

Yes.. my little MAO-ettes.. for great photography..sometimes MAO will even cross a river to experience it!!  Here are the details











2. Then.. Paul Graham on February 9th.. At the SVA.

Here are the details...


Monday, February 9, 7pm
Visual Arts Theater
School of Visual Arts
333 West 23 Street  

Free and open to the public 
The BFA Photography Department at School of Visual Arts(SVA) and Dear Dave, magazine present photographer Paul Graham in conversation with New York Times writer Philip Gefter. Graham is the subject of the exhibition “a shimmer of possibility,” which will be on view at The Museum of Modern Art from February 4 – May 18. The first in a series of monthly conversations exploring contemporary photography among noted artists, critics, curators and editors, the event will take place on Monday, February 9, 7pm, at SVA's newly-opened Visual Arts Theater, 333 West 23 Street, New York City. Admission is free.
British-born Paul Graham is recognized for his innovative and experimental contextualization of images and particularly tender observation of daily life. Since relocating to the U.S. in 2002, he has traveled extensively to photograph the country. The resulting work, a shimmer of possibility, was published in twelve volumes by steidlMACK in 2007.
Philip Gefter writes frequently about photography for The New York Timesand was its front-page picture editor. A collection of his essays will be published in April by Aperture as Photography After Frank. He is writing a biography of the collector Sam Wagstaff.

Dear Dave, is a magazine of photography and writing that has been published three times a year since 2007

January 21, 2009

New Edward Burtynsky work at Flowers East Gallery Show in London

New work by Edward Burtynsky at Flowers East in London.

Ed_Burtynsky_Silver_Lake_1 For all those many obsessed Burtynsky fans.. you might have seen one or 2 new Burtynsky photos (still selling strongly) during Art Basel Miami 2009, but now there's a complete new gallery show up as of January 9th.

So if you're in London before it closes on February 7th, you probably want to check out this new photography show.

For all the rest of us, who are geographically challenged.. you can see Edward Burtynsky's many new photographs on line.

Here and here.

(photo #1, Ed Burtynsky, Silver Lake Operations #1, Lake Lefroy, Western Australia 2007, Limited Edition Chromogenic Colour Print)

Ed_Burtynsky_Silver_lake_10This new exhibition is all of Mines in Western Australia.. hence the new show name.. Australian Minescapes.

It's clearly a continuation of Burtynsky's long term exploration of our man made landscapes. 

This time Edward is using for the first time planes (or helicopters) in the creation of his photographs. This has the effect of making these photos look much more like paintings than any of his previous work. 

Additionally, our first look at the work, we saw a strong connection between this new Burtynsky series with photographer David Maisel's work. Check out David's Lake Project, Terminal Mirage, and his Mining Project all done pre-2004.

The similarity is very strong between their projects...So, we're not sure how MAO feels about this.. What do you think?

  • Good ? The Burtynsky work is building on another artists efforts.. or

  • Bad ? He's just ripping off someone who did it first, but doesn't get the huge audiance Burtynsky  has?

(Photo #2, Ed Burtynsky, Silver Lake Operations #10, Lake Lefroy, Western Australia 2007
Limited Edition Chromogenic Colour Print)

FYI..there is also a nice but, small (approx 65 pages) new catalog available, with an essay by Michael Mitchell.

You'll have to contact the Flowers Gallery East for copies of the new catalog.

Flowers East, London

Edward Burtynsky
Australian Minescapes
9 January - 7 February 2009

Additionally..For all those Burtynsky fans, you'll all be happy to know, Edward Burtynsky, has a few Museum shows coming up : 2009

  • Whyte Museum of the Canadian Rockies, Banff, Alberta, February 6 - June 9, 2009

  • Edward Burtynsky: Uneasy Beauty - Photographs of Canada, Surrey Art Gallery, Surrey, British Columbia, January 17 - March 22

  • Burtynsky: Oil, Corcoran Gallery / Museum of Art, Washington, D.C. (touring exhibit begins), November 2009

January 20, 2009

Nobuyoshi Araki photography from the 1960's at Anton Kern Gallery

Nobuyoshi Araki photography from the 1960's at Anton Kern Gallery

Araki_Ginza Over the years MAO has begun to greatly appreciate Japanese photography.

And certainly the golden age of Photography in Japan was most certainly the 1960's and 70's.

In this show, you'll get to see previously unseen work by one of the Japanese Masters.

If you think Araki, is just a photographer of naked women he wants to make love to and pretty hyper-sexual flowers.. Think Again!

(photo #1, Nobuyoshi Araki Ginza (2573-31), B/W Photographs, 17 x 14 inches)

This show truly shows Araki as a street photographer visionary.

Here he established a distinct Japanese street style in the 1960's that would parallel the work of well known western world masters like Garry Winogrand and Robert Frank.

The show is filled with hundreds of wonderful B&W street photos from the Ginza.

Additionally in the show is an entire Tokyo Subway series by Araki which was a fun Japanese take on the famous book by Walker Evans "Many Are Called." Araki's book was titled Subway Love.

It's a historically important show, and it's nice to see a contemporary art gallery taking the risk of showing non hyped commercial small vintage Japanese photography. Plus, if you're interested in street photography, and not previously an Araki fan.. you should certainly run to see this show! It will totally blow change your mind about Araki.

The show is open at Anton Kern Gallery on 20th street, till February 7th.

January 16, 2009

ArtCycle.. A new Website to Buy and Sell Contemporary Art

ArtCycle.. A new Website to Buy and Sell lightly used secondary Contemporary Art.

Art_Pawnbroker If you've not checked out new york based, www.ArtCycle.com, you should.

It's a new curated website (aka.. a contemporary art pawn/consignement shop), and like Artnet.com it also is helping give the much needed liquidity and transparency to the contemporary art market.

Here's a little Art industry secret... sometimes Collectors need to sell art. Yes, my little MOA-ettes, it's sada bit funny..but given these tragic  difficult economic times, totally understandable. While MAO has never sold a work of art from our beloved collection, lately, MAO probably gets at least  one email everyday from a reader saying they own a work by XYZ artist and they need to sell it.

Generally the next sentence is always, the gallery that represents the XYZ artist doesn't want to buy it back (or maybe soon to be already out of business), and the auction houses need 3+ months to fit into their schedule and take way too much 25%.  The person needs the cash now, and if MAO would please like to buy it.  Or some people also ask if MAO knows someone who would like to buy it. Well.. we now have a solution for these people!  Check out www.ArtCycle.com !

They only started up in November 2008, and they actually have an impressive list of Contemporary Art inventory already.  They already have works by some impressive artists : Araki, Eggleston, Oliver Boberg, Hirst,Candida Hofer, William Kentridge, Opie, Anselm Reyle, Lisa Ruyter, Andrees Serrano, and Kehinde Wiley just to name a few.

So.. Here's a bit from their promotional materials...

For the collector, ArtCycle offers a space to contemplate their purchase

while providing valuable information about the artist and available works,

as well as something no one else does, detailing relevant and valuable

market analysis. ArtCycle offers reasonable commissions, ranging from

15% to 20% and, most importantly, all works are curated for consignment

by a seasoned team of art experts.

Most importantly, ArtCycle’s curated inventory offers only artwork with

pedigree. That means works of art by artists with lasting reputations and

market value—so every piece purchased is likely to maintain or increase

its worth over time. ArtCycle believes collecting art is not only an invested

labor of love, but also an investment.

Oh..and if you happed to contact www.ArtCycle.com... (Lauren Pearson, Assist Director,  [email protected]) be sure to tell them MAO sent you.. and I'm sure they'll give you the special MAO-ette discount rate!

January 09, 2009

MAO's best photography book list of 2008

MAO's best photography book list of 2008.

Happy New Year my little MAO-ettes! Welcome to 2009!

Fireworks So.. while MAO is doing his best to totally FORGET the financial sit show that has was 2008.

We thought we’d start the new year with one last look back at the worst year in financial history.


What better way to do that walk down memory lane 2008, than with a list of our favorite

photography books.

Now there were actually, way too many good ones to even think about, but these were the top 10.

Ones that MAO keeps finding himself returning to time and time again.


FYI..For the sake of sanity.. we removed all re-editions of previously published books.


THE MAO TOP 10 Photobooks of 2008 (in Alphabetical order by photographer)


1. Working from Memory.  Collected Stories. by William Christenberry. Steidl

2. A Series of Disappointments. by Stephen Gill.  Nobody

3. Invasion 68. Prague by Josef Koudelka. Aperture

4. The Chance is Higher. by Ari Macropoulos, Dashwood Books

5. Library of Dust. by David Maisel. Chronicle Books

6. A Road Trip Journal. by Stephen Shore, Phaidon

7. God Spoiled a Perfect Asshole When He Put Teeth in Yer Mouth. by Dash Snow. Peres Projects

8. The Last Days of W. by Alec Soth.  Little Brown Mushroom

9. America. by Zoe Strauss. Ammo Books

10. Lighter. by Wolfgang Tillmans. Hatje Cantz


Best Multi-Artist Photo Book /or Book Set of 2008


Tinyvices Series. Photography by Kenneth Cappello, Allan Macintyre, Jason Nocito, Robin Schwartz, and Jaimie Warren.  Aperture


One Last Note :

A book not by a photographer, and one MAO is still reading., and reading, and reading. But, it's a book that probably should be on everyone’s Photo Obsessed, Best of 2008 list.  It's by The Johns Hopkins University (MAO’s alma mater) Art History Professor…Michael Fried.

Why Photography Matters as Art as Never Before, by Michael Fried, Yale University Press

You can get it here... http://www.strandbooks.com/app/www/p/profile/?isbn=0300136846


So..all in all.. It was a great year for photography and even a better year for photography books.

Oh.. and if you're into this entire list thing.. check out this website, Photoeye, for their best of 2008 lists by some biased self interested  pandering vested more  "Important" photo obsessed people.

And, of course, feel free to rip this MAO list apart   please add your favorites photobooks to our comment section below. all thoughts are always welcome....Thanks!

And to everyone reading.... Good Luck in 2009!


December 16, 2008

The Holiday Art Sale Season... 48.5% off a Basquiat... My How times have changed!

The Holiday Art Sales... 48.5% off a Basquiat... My How times have changed!

It's quite amazing how fast the art world can adjust to these difficult impossibe changing times.

Brian_ulrich_Bloomington_MN_2004 We have to say.. MAO was RIGHT not surprised how "Discount" become the most popular word uttered at Art Basel Miami Beach 2008.

But clearly.. this is the time of stress for the private art dealer community. It would seem, rumors of gallery closings has quickly become the newest sport in the gutters streets of Cheslea these days.

In fact, some tenatious people are resorting to new and interesting sales techniques... See story below..

 What next? Gallery Coupons? Blue Light specials? Door Buster pre-opening show sales?  Will there be going out of business sales?

So.. Does discounting art make it seem less attractive to have the work in your art collection? What do you think?

(photo by Brian Ulrich, Bloomington, MN, 2004, part of his Copia - Retail Project, c-print)

Here's an interesting story published this morning on Bloomberg news... by Katya Kazakina.


Asher Edelman’s Holiday Sale: Buy Basquiat for 48.5 Percent Off

2008-12-16 05:00:01.1 GMT  By Katya Kazakina

Dec. 16 (Bloomberg) -- Asher Edelman, the corporate raider turned art dealer, has dressed the windows of his Manhattan gallery in the spirit of the times: "Holiday Super Sale," one sign says. "Totally Insane!" reads another. "No Kidding!" entices the third.

"All dealers are offering discounts now," said Edelman. "I am just being open about it."

The sale, which runs through Dec. 21 at Edelman Arts, offers discounts ranging from 25 percent to 50 percent on works by 20th century masters such as Willem de Kooning and Alberto Giacometti as well as the gallery’s contemporary artists.

A canvas by Jean-Michel Basquiat is $3.35 million, down 48.5 percent from last year’s asking price of $6.50 million. The unsold paintings by Berlin-based Christopher Winter, whose show just closed at Edelman Arts, were slashed by 40 percent.

John Chamberlain’s sculpture of twisted automobile parts can be picked up for $975,000, down from $1.25 million. A large landscape painting by Alex Katz is now available for $80,000, down from $150,000.

Unlike retailers such as Saks Fifth Avenue or Target, advertising discounts and publicizing prices are among the taboos of the art market. Most galleries offer a 10 percent discount on primary market works. Important collectors and museums often get 20 percent off the asking price.

"We are not a boutique," said dealer Richard Feigen, who specializes in old masters and postwar art. "We don’t put on sales."

Pushing Sales

Other dealers are trying to boost sales in a global financial crisis. "It’s a season when people are shopping for presents for friends and family and I am sure people are trying to capitalize on that," said artist Thomas Beale.

Honey Space, a nonprofit gallery in Chelsea that Beale founded last year, will hold a three-day sale to raise money for its operations Dec. 18 through Dec. 20. In order to create interest, Beale sent e-mails advertising the works by more than 25 emerging and established artists priced between $10 and $999.

"It’s partly reflecting on the economy right now," said Beale. And partly, it’s to "appeal to a larger group of people."

Another Chelsea gallery, Caren Golden Fine Art, sent an e- mail about its new show featuring 12 young artists with an unusual mention of prices -- $850 to $6,000.

The exhibition is aptly titled: "The Brand New Deal."

--Editors: Mary Romano, Daniel Billy.

To contact the reporter of this story: Katya Kazakina in New York at +1-212-617-4837 or [email protected].

December 11, 2008

The Aqua Art Fairs during Art Basel Miami Beach... some passing thoughts..

The Aqua Art Fairs during Basel Miami Beach... some passing MAO thoughts..
Now that we've had some much needed time to rest up from our Art Basel Miami vacation. Since everybody asks... we thought it was worth doing a little postmortem more art fair writing.

After the Pulse fair.. our next favorite fairs were the 2 Aqua fairs. One in the traditional Hotel, and the other in an old warehouse in Wynwood. Just like all the Art Maimi fairs, both were more quiet this year than last.  Sadly, these 2 fairs were also filled with very anxious art dealers....who'd not sold much art work by the time we visited. But, the quality was there, we thought both fairs were terrific. With several standout booths.. and a few new found artistic gems MAO felt well worth sharing with the blog world.

First The smaller, Aqua Hotel Fair. We loved the following galleries..and a few particular artists..

- The Platform Gallery from Seattle -They had new works of witty paintings and drawings by William Powhida (one of MAO's longtime favorite humorists artists) and they also had self portrait photographs by new young talent Ariana Page Russell. (Ariana Page Russell, photo #1 & #2, #3,  "Corsage, 2008", and "Heat Wave, 2008", and  "Sugarplum, 2008", all 26" x 18", archival ink-jet prints)

Ariana_Page-russell_Corsage Ariana_PAge_russell_Heat-Wave Aiana_Page_russell_Sugarplum So.. You have to check out Ariana's website directly to fully understand her work.  But in a nutshell, she has a skin condition, dermatographia, which causes her skin to quickly turn red and form welts when she's scratched. Ariana utilizes her medical hypersensitivity condition to create designs and patters on her body, which she then photographs.  We found her self portrait images both beautiful, and shocking. At the fair her works were selling quickly for only $600 each, Edition of 5.. they clearly were too amazing to pass up.

It turns out MAO wasn't the only blogger to love Ariana's work..

- Publisher AMMO books from Los Angeles, had a very cool booth. They were showing both photographs by our so loved, Zoe Strauss (FYI, they have about 10 different prints by Zoe Strauss available in 2 sizes at prices too cheap for such a total super star photographer..) FYI Zoe's new book "America" was just listed in Artforum as one of the best photobooks of 2008. They also had a great Limited edition, plus photo prints available from the Hunter S. Thompson book Gonzo.

- Western Project from Culver City had several new paintings by Wayne White. They, along with Todd Oldham and AMMA books, are coming out with a huge new Monograph of all Wayne's work in the Spring 2009. Should be wonderful to see!

- The Paul Kopeikin Gallery (which just recently moved to a new location on Melrose Ave in West Hollywood, CA..good luck to Paul on your new space) had several hysterical "worded braille" photos by Lizabeth Rossof, they were made from those silly paper roll dot candies MAO remembers from our childhood.

The Aqua Wynwood Fair Thoughts and Standouts..

First off, when it comes to art fairs, The Aqua Wynwood Fair.. is lucky to have nice real walls, much better lighting, and real Flat Floors... which just makes for a much better presentation experience for Art viewing. If MAO had a drink dollar for every time we stumbled on those damn tent floors at Scope, Art Miami, Etc..... Yikes!

- Patricia Sweetow Gallery  from San Francisco, CA - Great Booth! They had some thoughtful photo and video works from Jefferson Pinder, which are worth checking out. But both MAO and Dr. Quiz totally fell in love love love with the work of super young painter Jamie Vasta.

    Now, MAO never in his lifetime thought he'd ever write these words... "We liked a group of paintings made entirely of GLITTER."  Yikes..! Yes.. It's true... As a total contemporary Art Snob, it's almost scary to even type Jamie_Vasta_Zoe that statement, but it's totally true.

The work of Jamie Vasta, is as intoxicatingly thoughtful, as it is sparkly & luminous. Made of only Glitter glued onto wood board, her newest series of young girls with their hunted (and frequently killed) prey left us mesmerized.  FYI.. these painting were all made prior to the Sarah Palin for VP choice.

There's so much in these paintings, we looked at them again and again. this series are all based on images Jamie found off the Internet.. it's hard to begin.. but they were impressive, political, lush, scary and beautiful all at the same time. Sadly they don't photograph well.. so don't think MAO's completely gone mad, until you've experienced one directly.
(Photo #4, painting by JAMIE VASTA, Zoe,2008,glitter, stain on wood,40 x 30 inches)

But after seeing these paintings, it was no surprise to hear, this artist was recently named one of the top 15 artists under 35 to watch, by Art Ltd. Her work was actually the magazine cover. Jamie who was only born in 1980, already has had reviews in Art in America, Artweek, The New York Times, The Boston Globe, and has been a critics pick in Artforum.com. That's a lot of attention for glitter paintings.. but well deserved. Check out the work of Jamie Vasta soon.

- The Electric Works Gallery from San Fransisco had a great booth. Complete with a working artist Katherine_westerhout_aquarium_detroit made pinball machine by William T. Wiley.

They also had a great photo by Katherine Westerhout. Who's work we had not seen before.. but her Detroit project images are worth checking out.

(Photo #5, Katherine Westerhout, Aquarium, Belle Isle I, 2007, Archival Pigment Print)

- Walter Maciel Gallery from Los Angeles, had a strong booth with work by Rubel Collection Show, super star artist John Bankston. We also liked the soft cloth Cactus works by Margarita Cabrera. Finally, a plant MAO's black thumb can't kill.

- Lastly, we liked the newest color work by photographer Wouter Deruytter. He's completed a very expressive series of forest fire works complete Wouter_deruytter_first response with several hottie smoky firefighters. Several large photos were shown well at the Light&Sie Gallery booth from Dallas Texas.  We found these all very powerful images. great work.

(Photo #6, Wouter Deruytter, Untitled, First Response, 2007, pigment print)

Actually, for anyone at Aperture reading post.. this body of work would make for a perfect photobook.

So overall we really liked the time we spent at the two different Aqua fairs.. There was lots of new cutting edge contemporary art to see, and next year we will be sure to put them higher on our priority list of places to get to when at Art Basel Miami Beach 2009.

December 10, 2008

MAO art Buy of the MONTH... photo by Catherine Opie

MAO art Buy of the MONTH... a photo + the limited Edition book by Catherine Opie
OK.. my little MAO Christmas art shoppers... This is probably the best kept secret of the year.
Along with the new great catalog publication for Catherine Opie's American Photographer show at the Guggenheim.. there is a limited edition slip cased book with an amazing print for only $400.

The edition is only sized in 100 copies, and comes in a bright red slip case.

We checked it out this week.. and this is a good one! They have them at the Guggenheim book store now, and it sounds like VERY few people have actually seen it yet.

But for only $400 ($360 for Gugg Members.. I believe this week they have a 25% Member off special till Monday) you get an amazing portrait of Justin Bond (aka Kiki of the performance team - Kiki & Herb)

Catherine_Opie_Justin Bond (photo by Catherine Opie : Justin Bond, 1993, Inkjet print, 10 x 8 inches, Ed. 100.)

Here's the link to order online... Click Here
We're not sure what the member code is to put in..but you can call..

Customer Service 1071 5th Avenue, 9th Floor New York, NY 10128 Fax: 212-423-3640 Phone: 1-800-329-6109
Visit them:

1071 Fifth Avenue (at 89th Street), New York, New York 10128
Store Hours
SAT-WED, 9:30 AM-6:15 PM
THUR, 11 AM-6 PM
FRI, 9:30 AM-8:30 PM

3355 Las Vegas Boulevard, Las Vegas, Nevada 89109
Store Hours
Store Information, call 702-414-2490

ALSO..if you've not seen the show yet... don't miss it!
Catherine Opie, American Photographer closes at the Guggenheim on Jan 7th.

December 09, 2008

Art Basel Miami Beach 2008...

There were lots of nervous art dealers at the big Art Basel Miami Beach 2008... for good reason!

Art Basel Opened Wednesday to the much expected lack luster sales.  But, even in a tough economy, this one fair is still the most important art show in the  United States and, as in past years, people ArtBaselMiami_2008 gathered from all over the world.  Surprisingly this year was bigger than ever (their Web site says more than 2,000 artists this year). At the VIP preview,it wasn't as crazy as last year..and the vernissage wasn't as packed either. As a collector, it was a much better experience.. you could actually talk with the dealers...and look at the art without the madness.  MAO did spot a few celebs... Jay Z, Beyonce Knowles, and Faye Donaway (Yes...she's still alive).

According to the   Miami Herald:  "Despite global economic woes, Art Basel remained a feast for the eyes: 266 international galleries exhibiting the works of some 2,000 artists, new galleries from Dubai, Bangalore, Mumbai, and a colorful crowd strolling through the maze-like booths.  Maybe the crowd wasn't as colorful as in other years—people seemed to have toned down in every conceivable way."

Hernan_bas_The_Basin_of_a_evil_river Well, it's a total local slant on things.  After all, with one of the nations highest home foreclosure rates, how can they not tell the folks of Miami the rich are "toning things down" because of the economy?  Anyway, it was still quite an amazing show.

Our single favorite new work of art presented at the fair was this huge Hernan Bas painting in the Fredric Snitzer Gallery booth he's painting in big/epic size now, and it totally worked! ... Sadly, we were too scared to actually ask the price... (Photo #2 : The Basin of a very evil river, or where to vacation next by Hernan Bas 2008, acrylic on linen, h: 103.5 x w: 76.5 in)

The Herald also noted they had a special exhibit on Robert Rauschenberg, who died in May and regularly came to Art Basel.  "This year's fairs also featured several tributes to the late Robert Rauschenberg, including a selection of seven works being shown for the first time since the 1980s at the Joan Washburn gallery."  Even with  reports that MoMA paid $30M for one of his paintings in June 2005, Several dealers clearly played it safe this year, choosing to show Rauschenberg, and Warhols in place of more risky young artists. But, you have to wonder how many galleries are in deep need of cash right now, and long a few too many overpriced Rauschenbergs. By Sunday..MAO hadn't seen many redots on any of these vintage gems. We think sales were clearly down.. but probably not as bad as the rumors.

MAO and Dr. Quiz hit almost every fair, we deserve a medal... and FYI, For those big Naomi Campbell fans (aka.. Fashionistas Photo Collectors), there was a retrospective of her (uh) 23-year legacy at Art Basel.  Actually, Ms. Campbell is big in the art world, she told the NY Metro blog that she was a "beginner."  But, apparently this type of retrospective has never been done before. At the New Fashion Photo Fair..they had a surprisingly well done exhibition of Naomi in photography. Totally amazing.

Now that we're back in NYC, We'll post a few more on the MIAMI Art Fairs the next few days.. so stay tuned MAO-ettes.

This post was partly contributed by Kelly Kilpatrick, who writes on the subject of art school programs She invites your feedback at [email protected]

December 05, 2008

Pulse Miami 08 - The VIP Preview... Looking Better than Ever...

Pulse Miami 08 - The VIP Preview... Looking Better than Ever... But what a difference a year and about a 50% drop on the Dow Jones makes! Was anyone buying? Well.. maybe a bit.

So with too many about 10 Art Fairs opening up on Tuesday Dec 2nd in the Wynwood District Of Miami Last night..  MAO and our art collector posse correctly choose Pulse Miami to attend first. (and after too many mojito's our...LAST!)
We thought, if the drinks fair was weak, we'd head over to Art Miami.. but we spent the entire 4 hours walking around Pulse.. and it was time well spent! The fair looked Great.

There were several smart Galleries which brought largely Solo Booths to Miami this year..which we Love...Love..Love!!

All the MAO-ettes felt having these solo booths, just avoided the fair looking like one big going out of business flea market mish-mosh of art stuff being thrown on the wall.  It totally lent some true thought and organization to seeing so much emerging art.

The MAO SOLO standouts galleries were...

- Monique Meloche Gallery from Chicago - with an Amazing Kendell Carter solo show. Totally wonderful.. The booth was compete with Tricked out Boots, and a Timberline inspired Wainscoting. Clearly, Kendell is still young, but, he's probably going to be the next big African American Art Wonder kid.

- Copro/Nason Gallery from Santa Monica, did an entire booth of Robert Crumb works.

- The Mixed Greens Gallery of NYC did a 2 artist show of Joseph Smolinski works, and one of our Favorite Wood Sculptures Lee Stoetzel.

Chris_Larson_deep_north - Magnus Muller from Berlin had a 2 artist booth.. a new painting by 2008 Whitney Biennial Super Star - Ellen Harvey, and super cool, "The Deep North Project" video and photos from Minnesota artist Chris Larson (photo #1, Chris Larson, The Deep North 2008, C-print mounted on aludibond / C-Print auf Aludibond 90 x 90 cm)

- The Morgan Lehman Gallery from NYC had transformed their booth into a fanciful set. Built by artist Andrew Schoultz, their show was titled Majestic Projections.

Other MAO favorites artists work included :

 - A new painting by Julie Heffernan at P.P.O.W.

- Susan Derges photograms at Purdy|Hicks Gallery from London

Lia_halloran_Dark_skate_maim - A set of new Miami Dark skate photos by Lia Halloran at DCKT Contemporary from NYC (photo #2, Dark Skate Miami/ Palms, 2008 c-print 48 x 56 inches)

- And a collaboration of "sign of the times," Compound Editions, greeting cards by artists Jennifer Dalton and William Powhida (being shown at both the Winkleman and the Schroeder Romero Galleries)

Lastly..we were impressed with a very well curated booth of obsessive detail collages at the Pavel Zoubok Gallery, complete with new works by Mark Wanger, and a historic work by Al Hansen - a Hershy Venus Girl painting.

Next stop... The Main Art Basel Miami Beach!

November 26, 2008

Richard Mosse At Jack Shainman, one New Young Photographer to Watch!

The Richard Mosse photography show at the Jack Shainman Gallery, this is one new young photographer's show you do not want to miss.

It's the first Solo show in NYC, by this recent Yale Photography MFA, and Richard was just additionally awarded The Leonore Annenberg Fellowship in the Performing and Visual Arts. This is a major new grant which will enable Mosse to travel extensively over the coming two years to make new work. So..Congrat's to Richard Mosse.

Richard_mosse_heathrow_2007 When you go see the show.. you won't be surprised Mr. Mosse won a major art award already. You can also check out his work on his website..here..

Actually, You may have have seen his work already, Richard is on the front cover of SOURCE - Photographic Review, a British photography magazine,

OR just, maybe you've read a bit about Richard on Brian Sherwin's Art Blog, MyArtSpace.com
There's a very nice artist interview between Richard and Brian..which was well worth a read.

(photo #1, Richard Mosse, 747 Heathrow, 2007, Digital c-print, 72 x 96 inches)

So you could say.. this young Irish chap has more than just hit the ground running. Richard, already lists Marty Margulies as someone who's collecting his artwork...

Well.. the show is great.. We loved the documentary nature of his photo project. It's a series of Richard_Mosse_747_Schiphol_2007 airplane disasters simulator, which is very much in the same spirit as another one of MAO's favorite British photographers, Sarah Pickering.  But to MAO, Richard's photos come off a bit more literary. For both Dr. Quiz and MAO, they immediately brought to mind an entire genre of scary airplane disaster flicks...  or even a bit of a trace of the 9-11 terrorism.   Maybe these photos are just a sign of the times.. Hmm....

So before everyone heads down to Art Basel Miami Beach 2008 (sadly, to be henceforth known as..The Last Big Art Party Before Tons of Teetering Chelsea Galleries GO BUST)..  or if you're smartly staying in NYC to save some money, this show is up at the Jack Shainman Gallery until December 20th. So, Check it out! And keep your eye on this young photographer/artist, Richard Mosse..

 (photo #2, Richard Mosse, 747 Schiphol, 2007, Digital c-print,60 x 96 inches)

See you all in Miami... MAO will be the one at the Bar..cause something tell's MAO there will be a lot of drinking going on down in Miami next week! Yikes!

November 21, 2008

Mickey Smith photography at the new, Invisible-Exports Gallery

Mickey Smith photography at Invisible-Exports Gallery.

Mickey_smith_blood_coll So it's been a very busy Fall Art season for Dr. Quiz and MAO. This week we actually got to speak with both Jerry Saltz, and Roberta Smith over cocktails Tuesday night. Jerry is oh so much shorter more outgoing than we expected. And, Ms. Roberta...well...she was... Flawless!! As expected.

But one thing we did manage to luckily squeeze into our schedule, was the packed opening last week of the first New York City Solo show for photographer Mickey Smith.

You may know Mickey's work for Jen Bekman's 20 x 200 project.. so far both of her photos there sold out (in both the small and mid size) in just a few minutes.  We missed both!! DAMN!

So clearly.. there's a lot of Mickey Smith fans out there in art blog world. Others may know Mickey's work from The Center for Photography at Woodstock..where she has been featured on the cover of their magazine.. as well as having her work shown there this summer.

Mickey Smith's show is titled "You People" and is up at the Invisible-Exports Gallery until Dec 21th.

(Photo #1, Mickey Smith, Collocation No. 7 (BLOOD), 2008, Forty archival inkjet prints on canvas,
16 x 24 inches each, Edition of 3)

The work, which features her photos of bound periodical magazines, we found totally fascinating. It remained both, Dr. Quiz and MAO of our muchyounger  college days of late night research sessions spent in the dark library stacks.  Mickey refers to herself as a cultural archaeologist... and hence you might say.. MAO really digs her photography work!! Sorry... couldn't help ourselves with that one!

Well..here's a snippet from the gallery press release.. the show is great.. don't miss it! 

FYI... This is only the second show for this new gallery..Invisible-Exports.. hopefully one of many good ones to follow.. because, what this young gallery lacks in shear size.. it's 2 thoughtful owners make up with high energy and big personality!   Clearly one art combination well worth checking out this weekend if you find yourself on the hip lower east side of new york city!

A big MAO Congrats go out to Mickey, Risa, and Ben. We wish you all the best.


... Mickey Smith is a cultural archaeologist and You People is her reclamation project. The books and bound periodicals she photographs are a fossil record the 20th century unknowingly left behind. In their own time, these periodicals represented to their readers a concrete and tangible common culture — each reader knowing that there are thousands, perhaps millions, of people around the country reading the very same things — unifying communities of subscribers around shared interests, shared standards and shared identities. But looking at them past their expirations dates has the opposite effect: the publications seem insufficient, the audience for them a universe of disparate and disunited lives, only loosely bound. They become something else, the meaning shifting from their content to the viewer’s own inherited history.

Mickey Smith’s photographs deal with themes of association and disassociation. The titles, repeated one after the other on the shelves of libraries across America, represent a cultural heritage, a kind of serial aspiration on the part of an immigrant nation toward a finally resolved sense of identity. But as Smith shows, forming an identity is not as simple as clustering around one node — or periodical — rather than another. Instead, by showcasing the repetition of these words, she highlights their incantatory power—and suggests that identity and culture have always been a matter not of neat categories but of vague associations.

Mickey Smith is a McKnight Artist Fellow in Photography and has received grants from FORECAST Public Art Affairs and CEC ArtsLink. Currently, her work can be seen at the Center for Photography at Woodstock, in Woodstock, New York, and the Pushkin House as part of the Contemporary Art in Traditional Museums Festival in St. Petersburg, Russia