if you want a snapshot of PPP, if you are unfamiliar with the crew – I offer up PABLO POWER and his tough gritty sculpture – from the 15 WARREN ST underground pop-up exhibit that hi-jacked the start of JAN 2014.
a huge group show – electric with energy, creativity, and social comment.
just scroll down the archive at left to JAN 2014 – to see more images.
it was an explosion of site-specific light works, wall murals, projections, social politics, war/conflict/WTC, bio-future-ness, future chaos, pop-up splendor to the max, and . . homeland security.
all: very industrial in the making. raw, tough. ranging from expressionistic to the finely pointed.
very hardcore. very awesome and dished out hard and crazy wild.
PHOTOS: NANCY SMITH, 15 WARREN ST, NYC. DEC 28, 2014.
talk about: hitting the nail on the head
talk about: sniper bullet traveling through the air at great velocity, and from some distance, hitting its mark – dead on
talk about: NYC crew taking LA for a run for their $$
talk about: what, NADA ?
talk about: the ultimate collective unconscious, ‘SELFIE’ . . reduced to one crystal sharp image.
with no human to be seen in the picture, except through implication.
a selfie is a selfie is both a reflection, and a capture – of the times.
we love to war, let’s face it.
invite just came in on the wire, in lock-step synch . . from PPP / PETER PAN POSSE !!
my one question: where is SEAN VEGEZZI, on that list of artists ?
LOVE//WAR . . Featuring Work by 37 International, NYC and LA Artists
a group exhibition presented by MINT&SERF, PaperWorkNYC & MaMa GALLERY
at MAMA Gallery, Los Angeles
opening reception: SAT JAN 31, 2015 / 7PM – 10PM
the show runs thru FEB 7, 2015
MAMA – 1242 PALMETTO STREET, LOS ANGELES, CA
taking place in conjunction with the LA ART BOOK FAIR, from the MINT&SERF invite,
. . . “LOVE//WAR is an exploration of the conflicting relationships that drive our daily lives: Birth vs. death, Good vs. Evil, Now vs. Never, and Young vs. Old – as understood by a multitude of creative perspectives. We examined the landscape of the artists and photographers we work with and realized their work ties into a distinct theme: because we are touched by uncertainty and contention, personal desire and public power are a constant and inevitable force behind everything that is good, and equally bad.
As the late theologian WILLIAM ELLERY CHANNING put it: ‘Difficulties are meant to rouse, not discourage. The human spirit is to grow strong by conflict.’”
so, I was right !!
about . . ‘AMERICAN SNIPER’ – being all about craft.
‘skills’ – marksmanship, sharpshooters, snipers – as American as the Civil War, as homemade as apple pie.
turns out the real CHRIS KYLE had a sharpshooter / SWAT team training business, and it was called … ?
CRAFT INTERNATIONAL LLC. oh yeah.
talkin’ about – graphic design !!
I’m always dumbstruck by the violence of the American Civil war re-enactments.
I’m always dumbstruck by the violence and threat of our real-time global disaster of a DNA doomed low IQ habitat. and hell, no. I don’t want Iran to have nukes.
that’s totally the wrong-ass approach: take-away nuclear capability, don’t make even one more . . nuke the norm.
fuck treaties, disarm.
arm-to-arm combat any day, over total extinction.
hooray for snipers. they kill one person at a time, not whole islands.
away from our deeply wired & totally embedded fucked-up bio-genetic make-up – and, back to: ‘craft’ !!
back to: ART.
does art today – have any meaning, any skills – what a dumb question.
of course, and it’s coming to you, as a ‘SELFIE’, as in ‘a first person bio-narrative’ – this particular time around.
I’ve seen a lot of ‘skulls and crossbones’ in my travails in the art world, and so have you – from the punk underground, biker clubs, on up into the diamond-encrusted secondary markets . . so if you are any kind of artist, or just curious art fan with any ‘eye’, you also should have noticed those great, silk-screened, gray ghost-like skulls that appeared on the American soldiers’ uniforms, and maybe also on the gear, towards the end of the movie. for sure – I was: who silk-screened that ?
I just re-checked the ‘American Sniper’ trailer – but there were no skull bearing ‘frames’ to screen grab.
keep your eye out for them, next time around.
I thought they were really exceptional, very ‘ghostly’, as in ‘deadly’, minimal, but eerie, no words but doomed as hell. like, art-wise they are life . . . life slip, slip-sliding away, kind of melting with a curiously not funny cartoon ‘edge’ to them. a kind of street tagger all-American Casper the friendly ghost – who got way pissed off. lethal. yeah, that’s it, they speak to lethal, design-wise. no threats, just doing. zero tolerance. zero chances. in a word fed up, and seen too much. the scale of the design was just right, too. I kind of noticed them, but then shook them off, just long enough to think, did someone on the movie crew do that . . did a kind of random day job gaffer, street artist by night, just happen to be on the set, and they let him loose ?
was it the costume design pros, having a little fun ?
I sort of accepted it as a kind of folk art that soldiers do, painting scary icons on the noses of their fighter planes. wartime folk art. it’s called: sending a ‘message’.
also known as . . the visual arts, in general.
but then when I read this random article, below, in the ‘Business and Finance’ section (!!) of the Wall Street Journal, and found out about Chris Kyles’ enterprise, named: ‘CRAFT INTERNATIONAL’, I realized – damn I nailed it.
yep. dead right center in the cross hairs of understanding ‘American Sniper’.
sharpshooting is a skill, and CLINT EASTWOOD told . . a hell of a technical beauty of a tale.
“despite what your momma told you / violence does solve problems.”
is that not an all-American ‘SELFIE’ . . to reflect upon, or what ?!!
a ‘SELFIE’ – that speaks from . . experience.
don’t tread on me, an early American colonial battle cry – if you know your American quilt history, you know it . . well.
it was writ large, sewed into many a cozy bed cover, and later found prominently re-born among confederate civil war flags, the accompanying motif always being a very pissed-off snake, uncoiling upward.
in other words:
for better (old Europe) or worse (Native Americans), American vs American re slavery rights:
don’t mess with me, or there will be no more ‘SELFIE’ – for you !!
old American mantra.
old American arts & crafts.
‘AMERICAN SNIPER’ vs ‘Mr. TURNER’ ?
‘AMERICAN SNIPER’ . . WINS !!
SO: is this the year of the biopic – or what ?
selfie x selfie x selfie x caricature – in cinematic terms ?
‘Big Eyes’, ‘Get On Up’ – JAMES BROWN, ‘American Sniper’, and supposedly the big daddy art biopic of them all: ‘Mr. Turner’ – all tell stories of real people, and in close-up, intimate range.
I mean even ‘The Grand Budapest Hotel’ . . is a biopic !!
it’s actually, format-wise . . even more truly a ‘selfie’ then the others – as it’s told from a first person point of view – a recollection.
and in a funny twist, although it is FICTIONAL, it is re-creating the storytelling voice of: STEFAN ZWEIG, so, go figure.
ps: in a gorgeous snarky aside, didn’t you just love how the lawyer, a superb JEFF GOLDBLUM, got his 4 fingers chopped off !!
ok. yeah I saw the ‘Nanny Photographer’, too. it’s a true biopic, in that it is a doc after the fact, cobbled together after her death – and I guess then that should be included, it’s actually up for an award !!
maybe more on that – next. it was kind of wimpy.
only in a slow week in the art scene, would it even score a mention.
SO: geez, apparently NOT all OLD WHITE MEN are old fogie geezers.
3 cheers for CLINT EASTWOOD for holding down the fort – of cinematic brilliance on EVERY FRONT.
3 cheers for the REAL MR. TURNER, you old horny hobbit – please stand up !!
what a character !!
but seriously, details aside – the film is way too slow, worse than watching a pot of water come to a boil. moves at what they used to call a ‘glacial’ pace, but now up-dated to .. slower than watching the glaciers recede via global warming.
SO: obviously, not that much exciting is happening in the art world, to report upon this week . . .
but the big screen, and even the little screen (TV) are super super HOT !!
where biopics, stretched to include fictional bio-dramas, bio-novel adaptions, as well as real life action – are too numerous to list, but you know them, including ‘Girls’ – a true ‘selfie’ (!!) and ‘Olive Ketteridge’, moving thru ‘Homeland’ and onto ‘Sons of Anarchy’, ‘House of Cards’, etc etc. all these intense bio portrayals are the plats de jours, and all kinds of TV/CABLE series based on vivid characterizations, (as opposed to rom-coms) – are just absolutely . . on FIRE.
I don’t care what anybody says, including the so-called hip of the hippest, who are really just too cool for school, and very lame attention-needers – ROLLING STONE, that means you !!
BRADLEY COOPER inhabits that ‘military artisan’ – sniper, sharpshooter, or marksman, no matter how you want to call it, like he is out of his body and burrowed deep into the real life CHRIS KYLE that the film is based on, and yes, he does deserve an Oscar for Best Actor.
yes. military ‘artisan’, just as surely as there is a BROOKLYN REVIVAL 21st CENTURY – on all things craft and ‘artisan’ – this film is so on point, being a conscious focus on the individual talent and determination involved in being an ace sharpshooter. it is most definite about being being hands-on, ‘skilled’ as in hand-made . . . as opposed to being about a non-human heat-seeking digitally navigated drone/missile.
the focus, skills, the beauty & tragedy of that deployment in action – is captured in an intense, narrowly focused sweep of a life story .. by director CLINT EASTWOOD, as in no other war movie before. American markmanship has a very proud history, going back to the days of the American Revolution, where if you pay even the slightest attention to the re-creation dramas on TV (!!) – these lone snipers, homegrown backwoods boys skilled enough to stand above, or rather apart from the rest of the pack – as to surface in history by name, were key battle game changers. Mr. Eastwood has just brought the arc – up to update.
it’s very Americana. profoundly Americana.
young American snipers picked off the British officers, who were used to being able to parade around on their horses – previously a big no no, and strictly off-limits according to the rules of old world warfare, too bad. talk about early American fighting spirit, and . . know-how.
oh lordy, yes I was happy to see this film, it was fascinating and a brilliant portrayal – but friggin – deadly SLOW. talk about a sniper, this film needs a sharpshooter of an film editor – to take it back back to the cutting room, and trim like 1 frame out of every 11 – out.
it reminds me of TIM BURTON’S woeful, but could-have-been, ‘BIG EYES’ – in that the film loses creative steam – to a technical ‘glitch’ . . as opposed to a weak storyline.
in ‘BIG EYES’ – the 2 leading actors, CHRISTOPH WALTZ and AMY ADAMS never get on the same page, and this eventually just shuts the whole film down – and brings the entire enterprise to a complete stop. in ‘Mr. Turner’ so much of the film is wonderful and brilliant: the cinematography, the story-telling, the tale itself, the acting is superb across the board – but the film is so slow – as to kill any possibility of real success. even I, dedicated art world wonderer, and a big movie fan – was left crawling up the walls, as it went on and on and no. grunts and groans, and all. I literally felt like a pre-schooler forced to take a ‘nap’, when your blood is racing and all you want to do is run amuck, and fling your arms out to life. I was literally hanging onto the almost empty theater chair in front of me – for dear life, I was so awash in impatience, absolutely, physically stultified by the glacially, and overwhelming boring pace.
yep, that bad.
I mean unlike ‘BIG EYES’ in which the horribly mis-matched character acting is imbedded through-out the film, this film could possibly be saved – if they just had the GUTS to go back and do one hell of a re-edit !! they don’t have to change anything about how the story unfolds, they just need to sharpen up the pace of the telling, and I don’t mean delete all those great groans and grunts – but man, get it moving.
I wonder if they would have the guts to do that ?
I wonder if a film has ever yet been pulled from circulation – and made better, edited to run swifter – with the material already in hand ?
too bad. because it’s quite a curious character brought to life, and in a most marvelous way, so curious. so Brit, in a nutshell: such a ‘Hobbit’ meets BEATRIX POTTER . . kind-of-way.
omg, do you remember TIMOTHY SPALL – in ‘HARRY POTTER and THE GOBLET OF FIRE’ – enough said.
I guess there was a reason HARRY POTTER, had that last name (Beatrix Potter ).
but back to Mr. Turner, I wish I could say it was just as delightful as those Harry Potter films.
I mean, PLEASE don’t take out all those long scenes, and silent landscapes, all the long silences and esp all those groans, and grunts. but you know, pick and choose your battles – otherwise this very fine effort – is doomed to the dustbin.
if you can sit through it, maybe it would work broken down into smaller pieces and serialized on TV !! it is a rewarding and full of brilliance cinematic journey, with piquant, insightful moments and rich with vivid cameos. it actually, unlike ‘BIG EYES’, but on a par with ‘American Sniper’ – unfolds as very real, very authentic, but still even so, reverberates: very c-u-r-i-o-u-s.
I can’t say, ‘curious’ enough. even though Mr. Turner seemingly was very successful and in fact a celebrity in his own lifetime – what a curious, horny little hobbit.
how he ever got past his natural-born – ‘outsiderness’ – is a mystery not addressed by the film, apparently he was part of the academy, the film only traces the last 25 years of his life – til his death at 76 in 1851. I guess in his youth, he was just that great a virtuosity. but the movie seems to imply that his curious stature and resultant ornery anti-social stance, finally caught up with him, and when he really let loose and let his creativity – fly, social walls closed down on him, except for his curious love life ?
that opening scene with the windmills, shown in the screen grab above – is the absolute most beautiful cinematic moment put to screen. don’t clip that. it’s fine, it’s more than fine – it’s a glory to behold.
the painting ‘technique’ shots, esp his inserting that red buoy by hand and dirty fingernail, into a finished canvas at an academy exhibition – all ring true.
omg, his hobbity sex life – is a full-blown capture: a riot of soulful passion and upfront grunting ribaldry, without any trace of humor !! the scenes with his slightly not-all-there housekeeper are the best road bumps the movie delivers, and unlike everything else in this movie – move on way too quickly.
the interludes at the academy, likewise are fascinating, Turner vs Constable !!
particularly noteworthy – are the bits with the inter-generational painters, painters of all ages and stages . . showing up to the lectures !!
likewise the JOHN RUSKIN cameos are a real sweet spot, too. so swift and telling, and unlike most everything else in this grand film – so swift and good – in the movie telling !! so I’ve been rambling on, so much – I hope I’ve lost half my readers so I can insert this . .
OMG. whoever knows NICHOLAS STEINDORF, a young painter on the scene, that I follow on artlovers, don’t you agree . . ?!!
you know, NICHOLAS STEINDORF vs ANDY WARHOL, that same young painter/digital video artist . . . who took us on that spirited, but well-curated trek through the GREENPOINT STUDIO ART TOUR last Spring.
well, tell me that one of those two young, intense 20-something artists, specifically the one with the long hair and ‘German’ demeanor, in the stuttering JOHN RUSKIN salon – isn’t a dead ringer for Nicholas !!!
haha, a little bird told me Nicholas had just as hard a time sitting through the movie, as I did.
the friend I went with it – actually fell sound asleep. like being lulled to your death, if death could only be so kind.
yeah, that bad.
damn it – do a re-edit !!
don’t they have ‘test’ audiences in Europe ?
MR. TURNER vs MR BROWN, as in . . JAMES BROWN ?!!
now, that’s a funny thought !!
‘GET ON UP’.
@BLACKLIVESMATTER . . .
why aren’t CHADWICK BOSEMAN and BRANDON SMITH . . . strutting their stuff at the awards shows – this season ?!!!
except for the one lone lame performance – DAN AYKROYD, dialing it in, or on delusion tablets . . and the one white guy in the film, wouldn’t you just know . . trying to play an ole school music biz agent – his performance never even hits barely acceptable, you cringe in embarrassment every time he gets screen time, yes THAT BAD !!
but otherwise – ‘GET ON UP’ – is on high gear . . 100%.
CHAD BOSEMAN and BRANDON SMITH totally inhabit their roles with astounding abandon and sheer absolute talent.
as a portrait of a real life artist – whose roots stretched back to dark deep south gospel, whose music shook the world and whose business smarts were just as astute – ‘Mr. BROWN’ to all, harsh twists and sad turns and all – can’t be beat.
it makes me truly .. . ‘jump salty’.
huge omission – terrible snub. a sorry situation . . beyond the beyond of any reason, just a bunch of old white geezers way past their expiry dates – blowin’ it for everybody else.
SO: what a great expression: JUMP SALTY . . meaning “to become suddenly angry”.
Salty old sea salt – started off as term for those tough old birds that lived their lives on the salty, briny sea, but then in 1930 the African American streetwise wise-guys played a neat twist on the word – and came up with: JUMP SALTY !!
damn, wouldn’t you know it. jump and salty – crazy brilliant.
I know all this cool salty stuff – because the mighty straight-talking word master . . BEN ZIMMER wrote a wonderful essay on ‘SALTY’ (and @blacklivesmatter !!), its usage and roots – in the WALL STREET JOURNAL, this past Sat JAN 17, 2015.
definite, check it out: BEN ZIMMER – on ‘SALTY’.
the film’s somewhat wimpy edit, going for the dumbed-down mainstream but still pumping terrific music – TRAILER . . . comes across slightly soft, as in leaning towards OPRAH W and ‘THE HELP’ – as opposed to as downright SALTY !! the film is in its entirety. but this is movie is no ‘THE HELP’ – and in fact, #blacklivesmatter . . where is the brilliant ‘GET ON UP’ – director . . TATE TAYLOR in the awards action, either ?
ok, so he did in fact direct ‘THE HELP’, but trust me he crossed the hyper-vivid color line with this one. guess they should have circulated more press photos of TATE TAYLOR . . arm-in-arm with MICK JAGGER ?
definite, check out the: ‘GET ON UP’ – TRAILER
definite, check out: ‘GET ON UP’ – THE OFFICIAL WEBSITE
ONE, TWO, THREE – LET’S . . DO IT !!
on Oscars night, people should just flood their screens with this movie, in protest.
radiant, illuminating, and . . salty !!
almost to the point of religious . . ecstasy.
yeah, that BEAUTIFUL, that rockin’.
except for DAN AYKROYD. like I said, MICK JAGGER – wtf ?
locked into a contract ?
~’BIG EYES’ – BIG FLOP / ‘BIG EYES’ vs JAMES BROWN, by way of ‘THE DROP’ with a final stop at ‘THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL’
‘BIG EYES’ vs JAMES BROWN ?
the JAMES BROWN, bio flick – ‘GET ON UP’ – wins hands down, no contest.
so does . . ‘THE DROP’ and of course, WES ANDERSON’S ‘THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL’ – is the loveliest of – them ALL !! !!
‘BIG EYES’ – BIG FLOP.
of course, I was intrigued & happy to see ‘BIG EYES’. it’s a fascinating true-life story of deception, outsize egos, borderline autistics, gender domination, troubled marriages, an outsize con artist, brilliant showmanship, and last – but not least .. intellectual property theft (don’t get me started – photo copyright theft being one of my biggest issues & personal thorns), and most curious above all, and the least addressed aspect of the whole film & accompanying ka-babble – how and why – those previously reviled & spit upon, demeaned by the mainstream art world, kitschy BIG EYED WAIFS BY KEANE – so loved by the unwashed art masses – have not only prevailed, and need to be re-defined in art’s canon, finally endured to go on and worm their way into pop culture, big time. esp in the fields of animation, cartoon art and of course: Japanese anime. not to mention popping up the colorful trendy, wrapping paper I got on one of my Xmas presents this year !! (and, inside a book on quilts !!)
if you want to define ‘Post-Internet art’ .. look no further.
yes, the film is drenched in Panoramic retro-color, but when you come out in the same year as the most magical & brilliant, talented and gifted retro-color ‘THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL’ – if your storyline can’t sweep the cinematography off it’s feet – you’re looking like a mighty big loser.
and it’s not just the lame storyline, because there is a great great story to be told here, it all comes down to the clunker-of-junker of Mr. Burton’s directing, where one has to ask, new young blonde personal assistant “mid-life crisis” flame, and all – was his mind just not on the ball ?
could there be a worse match-up in movie heaven than AMY ADAMS and CHRISTOPHE WALTZ ? nobody in the world is going to disagree with me. CHRISTOPH WALTZ and AMY ADAMS were never, ever on the same page. acting-wise. even MR. BURTON referenced this, as if to, or probably . . hoping to ‘pre-empt’ the obvious – in fact it was the first thing out of his mouth: “was CHRISTOPH TOO OVER-THE TOP ?” – and then he shrugged his shoulders. no going back now, and the thing is, when you saw archival pix of the REAL IMPOSTER ARTIST/SHOWMAN WALTER KEANE running alongside the final credits . . . . he did look over-the-top, so was it AMY ?
let’s put it this way – she did a great impression of MERYL STREEP with a retro blonde haircut & make-up . .
there was absolutely no extra-terrestial radiance, no inner illumination of the real please stand-up MARGARET KEANE, in the building. nobody home. Elvis, I mean Margaret had not just left the building, she had never even knocked on the door. and god I so loved AMY . . in ‘AMERICAN HUSTLE’, so god of the movies – please forgive me.
you just could not fall into the movie – there was no getting past the cinematic conflict on screen – between the acting styles of these two. there was no chemistry, there were no sparks of life beyond these facade, Christph and Amy going through their retro masquerade at different speeds. a career downer for both, I think the blame has to fall with Mr. Burton ?
an Indie classic – no. nope. no way. but a fascinating art story – almost got told.
which is pretty is all pretty strange. Mr. Burton supposed to be such a brilliant director and all. great story and all. All I can say is the minute Mr. Waltz showed his face on the big screen – the whole theater burst out laughing out loud. we wanted Christopher to take wings and F-L-Y !! but it was all down hill from there., he never settled into the role. except maybe the ‘BIG LIGHT BULB GOING OFF IN HIS HEAD’ scene when he realizes, aha: the common masses of adoring fans who love the ‘BIG EYES’ paintings, but don’t have a dime to their names to buy an original canvas, can easily scrap together a buck, and buy a print. yep, everybody laughed the minute Christophe showed his face – it’s pretty damn basic obvious, a director either has to channel that huge great energy, or lose it. Mr. Burton lost it.
let’s face it when the 2 minute cameo of those 2 Hawaiian Jehovah Witnesses – are the most right on moments in a trumped-folly, you know ‘TWIN PEAKS’, ‘BLUE VELVET’ . . this is – NOT.
as for everybody saying Amy was so great.
all I can say is: go see ‘GET ON UP’ the radiant and illuminating film / story of the great JAMES BROWN. if you want to see great, cinematic character brought-to-life, a brilliant unfolding – this is your baby.
so, why is CHADWICK BOSEMAN- who plays, inhabits, projects with authenticity and verve .. the late great JAMES BROWN – not up for an OSCAR ?
shame shame shame on Hollywoood, and here they are all lamenting how racially un-diverse the Oscars are this year. and the most brilliant performance of the year – was right in front of their very noses. executive produced by MICK JAGGER, no less.
must be all those old foggies still creaking & creeping around. not quite behind the ball anymore, but well enough to drop a bad ballot or two. we have the same problem in the art world, so tell me about it.
I mean, not only was CHADWICK BOSEMAN a-l-i-v-e and truly James Brown kicking, but even in the short span of the movie we got an incredible insight into his darker sides, his complexity and ego tripping, as well as a deep understanding of where his music sprang from, a real nice cameo of deep South balck magic . . gospel church-going . . and a great great musical history picking up the trail, with a nice side dish of the nascent civil rights struggle going on in the background. we got to understand a compicated talented artist – in way that sad AMY with her hairdo never sparked for Margaret. and funny come to think of it, on eof th things that set JAMES BROWN apart – was just like WALTER KEANE, his innate flair for self-promotion & management. and, he JAMES, also had a dark twisty nasty side !!
throwing the whole thing off-the-charts to infinite greatness . . was the small (screen-time wise) but ultra-brilliant & way-inspired performance of a truly gifted . . BRANDON SMITH as LITTLE RICHARD !!
oh my god, and I thought I was a touched-in-the-head tarot card reader !!
ya gotta go see it.
the only flaw in the entire production was the way-off-his-mark, DAN AYKROYD as James’ real-life old-school Jew of an agent. what ?
MICK !! wtf – you can come up with a full roster of talented black artists, every which way and back and forth, including the gorgeous women in Mr. Brown’s life – but you can’t cast a decent old-school music talent agent ? Hollywood used to be full of them. guess they are all too busy being old foggies, bad voting, and apparently . . going extinct.
talking about which, going e-x-t-i-n-c-t . .
the real MARGARET KEANE is still alive and kicking. damn yes, that is her in the first moments of the film, sitting on a park bench in the very San Francisco park where Amy meets Christoph as Walter at a street art fair – where Margaret is trying to sell her big-eyed ‘selfie’ portrait/caricatures to ‘tourists’ !! she, the real Margaret Keane such a compeeling, poise I got distracted right away -who is that woman. then you see the archival photos and slips of ‘history’ trail past at the closing credits and you realize it was . . her.
tuns out Tim Burton actually knows her pretty well, and commissioned some paintings from her decades ago !!
damn damn damn in a world of increasing stupid-o . . can somebody please go and interview her & film her and let her for ONCE AND ALL – HAVE HER OWN REAL VOICE !! she’s old, but she’s got great posture, great spine and I bet the mystery of those haunting BIG EYES . . will slowly come forward if she can just speak for herself.
boy, talk about doomed, bad karma – what did this poor woman do in a past lifetime – that nobody lets her tell her OWN story !!
I mean, we can’t wait forever, or are we doomed to end up with a “NANNY PHOTOGRAPHER” – TAKE TWO ?!!
I mean it is kind of rich that NEW YORK TIMES CRITIC – JOHN CANNADAY couldn’t call it, no surprise there. . . what incredible, magical ‘legs’ those KEANE ‘BIG EYE’ have had. how interesting that her naive outsider ‘cartoon art’ – her ‘lost’ waifs live on. and on, and on. and how interesting the roll of her husband in their marketing, mass appeal, branding and almost damning promotion.
oh lordy, how the outsiders always come in from behind – to win the day.
I wonder if that’s what the art critics of his day thought of VINCENT VAN GOGH, or EDVARD MUNCH’S – THE SCREAM ? both very cartoon, comic book like. and of course that was the game. trashed by the pros, but living the afterlife – big time.
which brings us to ‘THE DROP’ – if you want to see just how badly MR. BURTON dropped the ball re a small ensemble film – beyond a bio pic like ‘GET ON UP’, go see ‘THE DROP’ – totally fell through the cracks – but bet it’s going to have a great long life, ‘legs’ !! on the small screen in your house.
and, if you want to see how just much magic and creative thinking-beyond-the-box was missing from ‘BIG EYES’ – well you know, a night at the ‘THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL’ – is just what the doctor ordered !!
should I start doing my hair up like TILDA SWINTON’S – or what ?!!!
don’t you just love when RALPH FIENNES says old people just have .. so much FLAVOR !!
ok, let’s be clear. I can say that – because I’M NOT . . . THAT – OLD.
but my god-given hair . . sure could rock like that.
somehow, apparently I too am doomed to be an outsider, no matter what.
artlovers, and all.
maybe there’s no (artistic) gain – without the (borderline autistic / social) pain.
MARGARET KEANE, THE NANNY PHOTOGRAPHER, and me. great. just great.
Tilda Swinton, move over !!
Don’t tread on my cupcake, don’t even think about it.
time to lighten up, world.
though still thinking on . . “BIG EYES”.
the Margaret Keane story as told by Tim BURTON, posting – next !!
vive les femmes !!
turns out a woman was behind it all, from the get go. wouldn’t you just know it.
and don’t tell me those once re-viled and de-rided Big Eyes, don’t . . have legs !!
those Big Eyes just keep on going, esp even more so, in the Digital Computer Age.
for sure, when I see . . “everything is forgiven” ?? because here in NYC – apparently we don’t forget – the downed World Trade Towers, still showing up in our made-for-tourists – street art !!
a long decade . . after the fact.
and for sure, when I see international female world leaders photo-shopped out of national news coverage, because JE SUIS FEMME !!
I’m like, time . . to turn the record over, politics is so B-O-R-I-N-G.
red rover red rover, let the cutting edge ARTISTS . . come over !!
nothing like a little neo-hippie, sweet forest artistry to make a point – it’s a big world – out there, dudes. show some RESPECT for life. love, thought, and . . wisdom.
in a word: the future.
Australian artist JACKIE CASE, that means . . YOU !!
here’s to some well-drawn . . thinking.
not to mention: BIG EYES !!
welcome to NYC !!
‘JACKIE CASE: SOUVENIRS FROM THE MUNDANE’
JAN 14 – FEB 1, 2015
REBECCA HOSSACK GALLERY – 262 MOTT ST, NYC.
JACKIE CASE, ‘Don’t Even Think About It’, 2014. graphite on paper.
8-5/8 x 10-5/8 x 1-5/8 in.
talkin’ about: don’t tread on MY CUPCAKE – ALL YOU DAMN, DUMB DUDES of the so-called world !!
don’t even think about it.
talkin: strong fist in a very – pretty package !!
yes . . powerful messages, do come in small, sweet – packages.
ancient proverb. new age package.
and no, I would not classify this, if pushed – as ‘cartoon’ art per se, more along the lines of graphic illustration, which should not be considered . . demeaning at all. s-k-i-l-l-s.
it’s a big art world out there, and we don’t need to fight about ‘intangible’ boundaries, and definitions.
though, if you consider the work of ANDERS NILSEN, long considered a very acclaimed contemporary cartoonist, and graphic novelist, and if you factor in that the the works of JACKIE CASE pack a a strong, non-verbal ‘message’ . . then, guess what: yes, cartoon art – on the very uber, graphic, detailed realist range ?
and, of course: VIVE . . LES FEMMES !!
all images from the gallery website.
‘EXTENDED’ . . BY A FACTOR OF THREE, or even FOUR:
THE ACTUAL EXHIBIT HAS BEEN EXTENDED, THE BIG HEAD – ‘BIG EYES’ STREET ART / TIM BURTON MOVIE – KEANE CONNECTION, THE WORLD TRADE CENTER GHOST IN THE SHAGAWAT STREET PORTRAIT – DATED 2014 (!!) (BIZARRE & UNBELIEVABLE) – AS ALL EXTEND TO: JE SUIS CHARLIE / PARIS, FRANCE MASSACRE AT CHARLIE HEBDO, A CARTOON MAGAZINE/NEWSPAPER – JAN 7, 2015
JEFFREY SHAGAWAT – ‘SELFIE’ at FREIGHT+VOLUME
the show has been extended thru SAT JAN 17th, 2015 – !!
FREIGHT+VOLUME – 530 WEST 24th ST, CHELSEA, NYC
and you begin to realize that the word . . LOST says it all, for JAN 2015.
in SHAGAWAT, a kind of ‘artistic’ lost & found, in ‘BIG EYES’, a lost identity, and of course in Paris, a huge loss of talent, voices.
all center on cartoon art – I dunno, but if you were playing cards, that would be some . . hand.
if you were writing code:
if you were thinking about the so-called random universe, you would stop to . . ponder, at the beauty of science, fact & the . . tantric / divine c-o-n-n-e-c-t.
dedicated to the street art / cartoon artists of the world, and mostly by way of Jeffrey Shagawat, funny enough – how I stumbled on that. and his back room street art selfies.
Cartoons, ‘funnies’ – you got it.
Night in the Art World.
NOTE: STREET ART, CARTOON ART . . BIG HEAD – BIG EYES . . HOLD ONTO THAT THOUGHT, for a moment, review of the TIM BURTON FILM, ‘BIG EYES’, THE TRUE KEANE STORY TO POST – NEXT.
AND TAKE A LEAP, into the New Year – sad as it is.
and why do we .. all feel so lost, and bewildered / duh.
artlovers has always a great fan & follower of cartoon art, and so, also with love for our many friends – in FRANCE.
NOTE: THE WORLD TRADE CENTER – THE TWIN TOWERS, TO THE RIGHT IN THE JEFFREY SHAGAWAT ‘SELFIE’ – STREET ART, CARTOON ART, ABOVE. even though the portrait is dated – 2014 !!
I was thinking ‘lost’, as in lost and found, thematically for the Shagawat show, but finding the doomed World Trade center Towers in this background – made my heart skip a beat.
a kind iof literal – lost & found ?!!!
SINGULARITY / SOLIDARITY – OF THE RANDOM ‘CHANCE’ CONNECT, ALL LINING UP LIKE . . DOMINOES.
A STALKING, HAUNTING . . MOMENT OF MAJOR ‘CONNECT’ / THE PROVERBIAL ‘DIGITAL’ . . GHOST !!
THERE’S GOT TO BE MORE THAN 3 DIMENSIONS OUT THERE, for sure.
NOTE: STREET ART, CARTOON ART. CHARLIE HEBDO, PARIS, FRANCE – JE SUIS CHARLIE.
PHOTO of JEFFREY SHAGAWAT, ‘STREET ART PORTRAIT’ in his ‘SELFIE’ EXHIBIT, at FREIGHT+VOLUME – BY NANCY SMITH, DEC 18, 2014
JEFFREY SHAGAWAT, ‘SELFIE’
the opening reception took place THURS DEC 18, 2014 / 6-9 PM
the show runs thru JAN 10, 2015
FREIGHT+VOLUME - 530 WEST 24th ST, Chelsea, NYC
INTENSE, is not the . . . word.
complicated, mysterious, shifting, searching, intense, and ultimately: life-affirming . . .
the photographic complexity of JEFFREY SHAGAWAT’S world – moves in, and out of . . FOCUS.
A REVIEW . . & PIX – FROM THE EQUALLY INTENSE OPENING !!
if she looks a little familiar – that just might be because she is !!
her pretty face, albeit with long Native American braids, colorful beads and a deer skin dress . . can be found several feet high on billboards all over the city right now.
MIZOU plays SACAGAWEA in . . NIGHT AT THE MUSEUM.
funny how SHAGAWAT and SACAGAWEA .. rhyme.
SACAGAWEA translates as ‘Bird’ and ‘Woman’ which apart from making her Birdwoman, in a season of ‘Birdman’ !! totally captures Mizou as she comes off in person: kind, brave, strong, very very graceful, with much inner poise, and one senses, also of soaring spirit. Sacagawea was the only female Native American scout on the legendary Lewis and Clark expedition, where she was termed: ‘calmness under duress’ – and she played a key and measured role even though she was barely 17. we got the feeling this might also relate to Mizuo on a personal level, though you do also get a little feeling there might also be some passionate ‘wildness’ going on behind that calm exterior, esp as one is told she is in many of Jeffrey’s photographs, and they can get . . well, racy. flirty. flinty ?
I mean, what’s the point of running into Sacagawea, if you can’t run with it ?!!
PATRICK GALLAGHER with MIZOU PECK . . at the JEFFREY SHAGAWAT opening.
Mr. Gallagher plays ATTILA THE HUN, mighty ruler of the fierce nomadic tribes, known as “barbarians to the Romans”, bye the way – in BEN STILLER’S . . NIGHT AT THE MUSEUM.
the show had a fierce side, too. both sides of the coin, gentle and fierce. definitely multi-layered.
strangely, Sherri, was the name of the night.
JOHNNY ‘KIELBASA’, JEN SHAGAWAT, Jeffrey’s older sis, and DALE BOOKOUT.
JEN SHAGAWAT also looked to be of a very strong and colorful, complex personality, when I asked her what she did, she rather strikingly told me, in bold letters, that he was ‘LOST’ – !!
wow, I thought that was the best single response I had heard in many a year. that single word, uttered so forthrightly seemed to really capture, how we all feel – no matter really what you do or how you define yourself, or even how structured your life might be. the world we live in – is just so so beyond anyone’s control.
the prints themselves are beautiful products, no doubt about it.
from the press release: “SHAGAWAT employs a mixture of techniques, such as silver-tone, expired film, multiple exposures, and various cross processes – to achieve his singular vision . . . New Jersey-born Shagawat lives and works in New York City. He studied photography at the New School, where he developed an eye for portraiture and urban landscapes. Using vintage cameras, hand-printed processing and film, Shagawat eschews digital manipulation in favor of the traditional analog approach.”
“SHAGAWAT’S photographic tableaux includes friends and hired models, street denizens and family. In addition, the artist chose to document his struggle with brain cancer a few years ago. Having successfully come out of that nightmare with just a few scars, physical and mental, Shagawat looks at life’s moments as something to be taken in, captured.”
“When I look at my photographs I see myself and what my life was like in that moment, regardless of who or what is in the frame.”
to read more, and esp to see the photographs, without the ambient ‘noise’ and glare of the exhibition space . .
go to: JEFFREY SHAGAWAT, ‘SELFIE’/F+V
JEFFREY SHAGAWAT, ‘(Portrait) Seizure’, 2013.
LUBA SHAGAWAT points to a more mysterious side of the artist’s . . work.
life. life force. journey. search. watching. moving in and out of focus, with eloquence, and often playing with . . well, fire.
ANASTASIA YUFEROVA . .
JEFFREY SHAGAWAT, ‘(Portrait) Eyes’, 2012. Photograph, 20 x 24 in.
for sure . . that’s a lot of ‘pop’, as in drama, color, and print quality – for the punch / $$$.
it also expresses the range in the work, some like this one have great . . heat.
while others, interestingly many on the more exotic themes, skewed . . steely, sharp . . and even, cold.
the inert ‘reality’ of standard conceptions of photography – was really manipulated.
often very theatrically.
a key image, and a very graphic one, that also manages to tell quite a story. with a beautiful, mysterious composition, to boot. and in this case, heat of emotion meets coldness of observation, and both . . both win. pressing up against each other in a strong-armed . . tie.
CANDIDO GONZALEZ and ENID HUNT in front of the JEFFREY SHAGAWAT photo, ‘(Self Portrait) Multi-legs’, 2009 . . . their on-point on-the-street-now, graphic urban style helps point out, those afore-mentioned forces at play here: namely, contrast. in and out of focus, graphic vs lost or mysterious, ambiguous narratives, heat/cold, depth of the artist’s approach, and ultimately, his: s-e-a-r-c-h.
another key image in story, this is the full image from the photo above.
everything changes, in this photo – with the aspect, the inclusion, the compositional and thematic focal point of an actual self portrait.
selfie, on fire.
DEZ and SHERRI . . another look, because turns out DEZ also has a claim to fame. He is an aspiring model, and yes he was just featured, talking about photographers, naked of course . . in RYAN McGINLEY’S recent show at TEAM.
and I guess we’d be saying goodbye to a fascinating night, getting a little rare in Chelsea these days, at this point – except, the show had a surprise ending, and a very relevant one at that – talking . . culture buzz !!
namely, ‘BIG HEADS’, as in typical touristy caricature ‘portrait’ street art, I guess technically a kind of ‘selfie’ in it’sown right ?
vs ‘BIG EYES’ – yep, the amazing and twisty ‘KEANE’ story as told by TIM BURTON – and now showing in NYC in a limited release.
and yes, I did see it !!
but it’s going to be hard to write about. the story is fascinating but the filmmaking is not.
is probably . . the best way to say it.
how fun. sure enough, in the backroom, as a kind of postscript . . come to LIFE !!
JEFFREY SHAGAWAT presents some startling, straight-on photographs of ‘self-portraits’ . . he had commissioned of average anonymous New York City street artists of . . HIMSELF.
hmm, a selfie of a selfie of yourself ?!! they were great, how they caught different aspects or times of his strolls through the city . . in the slightly various styles, but all with with typically big-headed, big featured expressions.
so, between running into BEN STILLER, SACAGAWEA, not to forget ATTILA THE HUN, the style-happy street kids of the moment, and some big ole ‘BIG EYES’ !! right spot-on, on the week’s cultural thermometer, not to forget, some really great, super complex / intense art, asking the deep questions, with some real ‘flirting’ thrown in for good measure – I’d say that was quite some night . . at a gallery, or what !!
just the way they used to be, the real fun gallery openings . . not too long ago.
PHOTOS: NANCY SMITH – UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED.
HARK, MERRY XMAS – TO ALL . .
FROM: BEN FURGAL, MAGIC PICTURES / PHILADELPHIA
yes, HARK . . rhymes with art. for sure.
RIP – DBA – THE FINAL GOOD-BYE
DEATH BY AUDIO – PUTS ON – DEATH BY ART DBA
A FINAL GOOD-BYE ART SHOW . . TO THE LONG TIME DBA VENUE on SOUTH 2ND
A GROUP EXHIBIT – CURATED BY MARK KLEBACK and JOE AHEARN
NOV 6-22, 2014
49 SOUTH 2nd St, Williamsburg, BROOKLYN
RIP DIY DBA / DEATH BY AUDIO, the free-wheeling, cutting edge venue – done in by . . VICE.
OLIVER ACKERMANN founded DEATH BY AUDIO in 2002, a small handmade effects pedal company – providing effect pedals for LIGHTNING BOLT, WILCO, NINE INCH NAILS & U2 . . .
by Spring 2007, the space was also being used as a venue for underground music and art, run by EDAN WILBERT and MATT CONBOY.
DEATH BY AUDIO/wiki
DBA UPDATE> – JUST IN FROM MARK KLEBACK:
“the DBA GUITAR PEDAL COMPANY . . has a new space on HALL ST in the NAVY YARD.
MATT & OLLI are putting out new pedals for the holiday season and keeping busy … most everyone who lived at DBA went their separate ways, most of them moving in with significant others (!!) – I know MATT wants to open another venue down the road – we’ll see what happens.”
JAMIE DRAKE had several murals, all of which were very powerful.
you can also see the ‘DBA VIRUS’ by SHMOAK coming in on the right – those small curious cubes, of gold. industrial meets expressive . . explosive.
JAMIE DRAKE is an artist from Virginia and a friend of Oliver’s.
talking … ‘industrial’, and . . . ‘light’.
a narrative, real time, real world. photographic.
really and truly . . photogenic.
a magic, even romantic yet hard-core black & white graphic soundscape installation – by LOUISE FOO + MARTHA SKOU.
ROOPA VASUDEVAN, ‘rick ross, “hustlin’” graphic.
what I loved best were the graphics: great off-the-wall pastel colors, micro-print shadow ‘text’ designed to die for, and far-out in your face ‘object’ reality contouring.
bold. but not bold. almost cartoon, but NOT. almost hyper-real, but – not.
fascinating, gestural, yes.
just sitting right down straight on that cutting edge of . . fab. far-out conservative, very . . nervy. contradictory.
nice, very very nice.
that’s what I call – great d-r-a-w-i-n-g.
draftsmanship. whatever. graphic design. architecture.
what I liked most about it – was how it just was. no big deal, no big statement, quiet but oh so pulsating, so expressive, so temporal, and . . SO WILD.
like a hidden secret . . it spoke it spoke of life force, and creative energy. in the world, the ebb and flow all around us, cosmic and organic – we take a pen and make a mark, and a flower grows, a thought takes wings. as shimmery and complex as a butterfly, as a puff of (reproductive !!) pollen. the faint code . . behind the DNA.
note: there is a center, a purple passionate growing, squirmy hieroglyph – to this organic gossamer matrix.
just placed, as if by accident, by random gesture.
a big thought just growing on a . . dirty communal door in a place doomed to die by Vice.
what more can you say ?
PHOTOS: NANCY SMITH
RIP DBA / DEATH BY AUDIO – DEATH BY ART
along one wall ran a big selection of archival photos from the storied DEATH BY AUDIO . . nights.
a rip-paced history . . through their various venues, and stagings.
it was called: R.I.P. D.I.Y.
D.I.Y. FOREVER. amen.
because the place was surely . . a-r-o-c-k-i-n’.
EDAN WILBER and MATT CONBOY ran the DBA events – (underground) music and art.
read more about DBA: DEATH BY AUDIO
I bet that DBA Conboy has a ton of video gold – stored away, talk about . . D.I.Y. !!
just thinking, maybe that’s one of the layers of ‘inspiration’ behind those gold ‘viruses’ that crept in all over the place, more like cubic ‘smoke’. than anything else, or anything evil. contagious, or hacked.
kind of ‘static’ but moving, as in moving in all over the place – wide open, as in ‘variable’ – site specific – art ‘music’ . . by SMHOAK, whoever you are . .
can’t keep thinking about them. such a far-out multi-layered concept.
BRIAN CHIPPENDALE – CHIPPENDALE is also very well known & respected, and indeed with great awe . . on the underground art scene for the blow-apart alternative world art works, mostly silkscreen prints and collages, and his epic narrative ‘comic books’ . . which he has shown in NYC – at CINDERS, including that flat-out feverish warning in crayon colors, of a society in meltdown . . that was shown this past summer at the big Cinders 10th Anniversary group show at the seaport, just before all hell broke loose: the three E’s . . . ebola, environmental entropy, and . . extremist militants slicing their way, in an ironic – well: tragic and sick, as in sad / twist on D.I.Y. – one journalist at a time . . onto the global game board.
rockers vs fascists, the ultimate showdown. long live the rockers.
death by art . . f-o-r-e-v-e-r.
PHOTOS: NANCY SMITH
RIP DEATH BY AUDIO – DEATH BY ART / DBA
A GROUP EXHIBIT CURATED BY MARK KLEBACK & JOE AHEARN
NOV 6-22, 2014
49 SOUTH 2nd St, BROOKLYN
CHRIS UPHUES . . DBA MAN
note: it’s raining gold cubes.
metaphors . . abound.
love . . their scale – so ‘nano-like’.
love how they switch out from dark to light. so smoke-like. for cubes !!
dba viruses by SMHOAK.
dba ceiling virus by SMHOAK.
smhoak viruses started showing up . . everywhere, in other places when you least expected it.
very very .. very. good. intense. strange. industrial, dynamic. counter-intuitive . . the gold sheen really made the game plan . . take off.
smoke signal gone industrial. from ‘puff’ to ‘cube’.
PHOTOS: NANCY SMITH. NOV 8, 2014
RIP DEATH BY AUDIO – DEATH BY ART
A GROUP EXHIBIT – DBA
CO-CURATED BY – MARK KLEBACK and JOE AHEARN
NOV 6-22, 2014.
49 SOUTH 2ND STREET, BROOKLYN.
I saw all the buzz about the big VICE party.
all I can say is . . gentrification is a snake that eats its tail.
first come the hardcore artists, and then the hyper-marketed ‘hipsters’ take over, and the rents go sky-high. hopefully the artists, and musicians move on, to tell another tale, and bring another forgotten, and neglected neighborhood to life.
so, yes . . time to post the pix of:
DEATH BY ART – the last hurrah / closing party exhibition put on by DEATH BY AUDIO . . which lost it’s space to VICE – which bought up the whole entire block.
I was thinking . . VICE should have built their new corporate headquarters around DEATH BY AUDIO, and left it as is – as a little chapel to real artistic freedom, but who am I.
or desire. and in come the celebs and out go the hardcore artists, meaning of course obviously the musicians and the gear geeks, too. etc. etc.
damn. we want their money, but we don’t want them. it’s a hard thing to figure out, look at Miami Basel.
death to art by vice, greed . . pumped up ‘style’. pumped up ‘cool’. savvy packaging, dumb-ed down content, whatever. a kind of pseudo jargon ? of the street, but I never really felt it was cutting edge.
it’s just the way of the world. when the masses collide, authenticity and originality . . take a dive.
a road map to DEATH BY ART, presented by RIP DEATH BY AUDIO. DEATH BY VICE.
taken done by VICE, how sweet, not. surprised, not.
maybe somethings are just meant to have life, take on a spark in the moment. some of the best things – they are not meant to last forever. their profoundness in fact, often comes from their very fleeting, and therefore very free . . nature.
but still, people were feeling it. were feeling . . dark.
were feeling . . loss.
the road map to the show was printed on newsprint, printed in black and handed out for free. it is actually a pretty nice piece all on its own. an archival artifact, a graphic design with ‘soul’, I guess the word is: character.
a defining Brooklyn . . moment, that’s for sure. it had a very solemn ‘cast’.
a programmed ‘gamelan’ – by AARON TAYLOR KUFFNER stood in the small foyer.
all the while it was pitch dark, and so this is a photo – illuminated by flash, sometimes you just have to be there. it was eerie, and gothic. cathedral-like . on the underground scale of things.
it was really a statement, an experience . . to walk past the dark decline on the street, into the small dark entry with a very beautiful artist-made light fixture overhead, casting a pale glow, and an artist-made gamelan, moving gongs and all, playing all by itself, no people. it was definitely art, music, and ‘machinery’ . . invention. inquiry. statement. purpose. poetry.
the digital presence was divined by the small glow of blinking ‘machinery’ lights behind, like I said it was dark, and the sense was really of exquisite surround sound, no people. lots of history, lots of art – entrancement, is all I can think of.
his website: KLEEBTRONICS
here’s a few images, just the tip of the iceberg.
Kleback – is apparently some kind of central . . hub to the scene.
cog. gear . .
ZORB – image: KLEEBTRONICS
MOSHMURAL – image: KLEEBTRONICS
THAT SHOULD KEEP YOU BUSY, for awhile.
more pix of the ‘DEATH BY AUDIO – DEATH BY ART’ show . . posting shortly.
PHOTOS: NANCY SMITH – unless otherwise noted.
PHOTOS TAKEN ON SAT EVENING – NOV 8, 2014
wow. I didn’t realize til just now, that CANADA . . and NADA rhyme.
there has to be something to that, no ?
at any rate, the other artist to watch out for during MIAMI ART FAIR WEEK 2014, is also at NADA . .
the amazing LUKE MURPHY, who is kind of a poster child for the explosion of mental creativity that happens when deep thoughts, about the universe and ‘being’ . . of course (!!) hit hardcore hands-on . . digital knowledge.
I’ve been fascinated by Luke’s work ever since I happened upon his early solo show ‘Slope Of Anxiety’ in 2001 at the very earliest CANADA gallery venue, when it was located, in the aftermath of Pseudo’s ‘Quiet’ – in the basement of that grimy storefront building on Broadway, deep downtown . . where we had staged that blow-out million dollar Millennium Party, WE LIVE IN PUBLIC . . and I was collecting the rent for Josh.
looking back, that seems so apt, so auspicious . . so meaningful, so MAGIC, so TRUTHFUL, so RANDOM !!
so how the Universe – works.
to stumble across LUKE – like that . . in the ashes of that . . huge, futuristic, 99+ artist, wired, early social network grid of a creative art party / blow-out.
LUKE was like the single ‘seed’ of the future, peeking it’s head out – from the burned-out chaos.
it’s hard to define the realms that LUKE MURPHY traverses, except that the interactive ‘random’ animation – that appears as an ongoing ‘banner’ at the top of this page, pretty much . . says it all.
we don’t live in a ‘solid state’ . . in any more !!
and everyone is . . connected.
LUKE will be showing 3 (very different) digital projections at the CANADA, NADA MIAMI BOOTH 2014 . .
he writes that they are “about drawing, suspended potential, and trying to recognize truth, i.e. pretty lines and colors on a small screen.”
!! x !! x !!
you can actually, watch ‘Test Patterns’ on his website: ‘Test Patterns’/Works
it’s not just the color intervals, and how that ‘adds’ up to: BLACK, and . . the ‘VOID’ – but it’s also about the speeds at which ‘events’ happen, and with Luke that means randomness, and ‘generated’ numbers.
the other super interesting piece on that WORKS PAGE, is . . ‘Bad Eye Good Eye’. not only . . as an animation, and that it . . steps into real world ‘bio’ human imagery, but also because – it serves as an example of Luke’s . . dark side !!
!! x !! x !!
watch: LUKE MURPHY, ‘Good Eye, Bad Eye’.
so what I mean, is Luke also moves, image-wise – between the totally abstract, and the real (human) world.
in this universe, it’s all inter-connected – particles, patterns and . . humans. birth and decay, repeat.
oh yeah, I forgot: reproduce – i.e. pattern.
birth, reproduce, decay.
you can wander around in his multi-faceted world for yourself: LUKE MURPHY/LUKELAB
but maybe, the text in the ‘Happy Sad Bones’ project . . will help shed some light ?
and yes, that little green glass frog . . emits radioactive signals, which is picked up by the microphone, which in turn generates the ‘random’ numbers. of the digital animations.
that little frog is actually a piece of vintage, so-called ‘vaseline’ or uranium glass . . !!
it’s part of the . . RANDOMNESS – section
LUKE MURPHY – artist, magician, code developer, pattern animator, randomness-maker, philosopher . . !! x !! x !!
all I know is . . this is a guy who lives 9 lives, and if half of them are SECRET, the others are surely: ‘half life’ – as in . . the ‘longevity of radioactive particles’.
in other words:
in the huge world of ‘art’ today, witness this Miami Art Fair week – LUKE MURPHY is a one-of-a-kind, in other words: he is a . . singularity.
so check out, Luke’s . . ‘projections’ at the CANADA / NADA MIAMI 2014 BOOTH.
super fun !!
totally love it.
NADA just announced a ‘partnership’ with Beats by Dr. Dre for Miami Beach 2014.
Beats by Dr. Dre will be presenting a Beats x Barry McGee Special Edition Pill !!!!!
available for purchase in a special booth located in the lobby of NADA MIAMI BEACH . . .
The Deauville Beach Resort
6701 Collins Ave, Miami.
and . . BARRY McGEE will actually show up to sign his Beats Pill on: FRI, DEC 5 / 1 – 3 PM !!!!
so heads up !!
look at it, so cute !!
so . . bad.
so, Barry !!!
ERIK DEN BREEJEN PAINTS . . a wall-size, 2 floors in height, acrylic mural portrait. in his singular op-art, color-field ‘text’ brick-block style, of the legendary founder of ATLANTIC RECORDS . . . AHMET ERTEGUN, for their newly designed, Atlantic Records headquarters, in midtown Manhattan.
ERIK DEN BREEJEN beside his 2 story tall, very life-like mural of Atlantic records founder, and music industry legend: AHMET ERTEGUN.
just as AHMET ERTEGUN was larger than life, so this mural is larger than life. skillful, playful. hyper-real, hyper-narrative, hyper-lyrical, hyper-abstract – the total dynamic . . is a tour de force.
no doubt about it.
ERIK DEN BREEJEN: rock and roll !!
“WE STARTED ATLANTIC SIMPLY BECAUSE WE WANTED TO SIGN A FEW ARTISTS WHOSE MUSIC WE LIKED AND MAKE THE KIND OF RECORDS THAT WE WOULD WANT TO BUY.”
otherwise the mostly uniform horizontal ‘lines’ are composed of hand-lettered ‘word-blocks’, or ‘bricks’ that convey the narrative, and also form the dominant infrastructure of the whole. in this case – the words running through those brickwork lines – are composed of . . one line of the actual lyrics, and the chorus of about 100 of Ahmet Ertegun’s and Atlantic’s biggest hits.
the songs are arranged in alphabetical order by artist.
as in all of Erik’s recent color-field, ode-to-music paintings, the words themselves play more as building ‘blocks’ of color, quietly lying amongst the dynamic rumble of the background, and only jumping forth upon closer, more focused inspection, or as in this case . . when a well-known phrase, really does . . jump out at ya.
“SITTING ON THE DOCK OF THE BAY” – OTIS REDDING !!
this is Erik Den Breejen in top form. and he’s not fooling around with purist concepts, with a capital C anymore, or as much. the color-field ‘building’ text blocks are still there, but when he gets to the subject, the portrait – they are carefully hued for clarity, and depth – as much as for overall pictorial resonance. this portrait rings clear as a bell, it is very, in fact not only hyper-real,as in photographic – but it also astonishingly . . conveys great emotion, great depth of character.
and in that sense, this ‘commissioned’ mural differs from his most recent past solo show where the faces in the paintings – only coalesce into familiarity, under the compression of a camera lens. so in effect you really have to see them firsthand, otherwise you are seeing them compressed through a lens. very hard to explain in words, sometimes you really do need to ‘witness’ painting firsthand, in the flesh, on the wall.
it is a beautiful, and skilled rendering . . perfectly aligned, perfectly brought to totality.
Erik emphasized to me, that this “was NOT A PROJECTION.” it is all hand-drawn, in simple graphite pencil at first, then hand-painted in acrylic, with the color ‘charting’ being key to both the high contrast dynamics of the fluctuating op-art ‘background’, and the realistic ‘depth’ and 3-D shadowing, or contouring, of the central photographic portrait.
the mural, measuring 20 x 23 feet, is painted directly on a wall that spans two floors of a custom-made stairwell, carved out between 2 mid-height floors, in a huge modern midtown skyscraper.
the project was conceived by GENSLER, ‘an integrated architecture, design, planning and consulting’ firm whose motto, according to their website – is: “Leveraging the power of design to create a better world.”
I’ll say, right on !!
apparently one of the GENSLER architects saw Erik’s ‘DAVID BOWIE’ mural, on the side of the RAG & BONE at the corner of Elizabeth and Houston, on the Lower East Side last year, and set the ball – in motion.
that’s so . . New York !! you just never . . know.
who will see your work.
and . . where it will go.
this is a view of the mural from the top of the staircase – beautiful, and intense. sophisticated, musical, what more can one say – it all came together so well: concept, design, production. it’s a wonderful ode to the – man, AHMET ERTEGUN, because as we all know, if America has a heart, and it does – it beats to . . music !!
ps: a little hard to see, but check out that small bit of ‘hardware’ on the railing, near that black pillar – close to the right hand side.
looking down at the nearly complete, but still unfinished work, from the top of the stairwell.
Erik started the project on Oct 6, 2014 – but it was totally cool to visit, and document it when I did, in early November 2014, when it was almost complete. that way I could get to access the true breath and gist of the finished mural, but also . . still be in place to catch some of the behind-the-scenes production . . also known as . . the action !!
shades of RED !!
little cups of carefully mixed, hand-blended acrylic paint still perched on the stairs.
to my way of thinking, above all – Erik Den Breejen is a color-field painter.
hue. tonality, contrast . . is everything.
or at least the backbone, the engine that does all the heavy lifting.
while the actual words, the song lyrics – are the deeper . . soul and spirit.
work still-in-progress, at the very bottom of the wall . .
everything is hand-drawn out at first, the block outlines, and their text font/characters – with pencil. it’s a form of ‘primitive’ block calligraphy that is characteristic of Erik’s natural hand, then the letters and backgrounds are carefully painted, colored-in with carefully charted . . hues. maximized for effect, and in the subject’s face . . for 3-D depth, and clarity of expression. and, no doubt about it, that face does have an amazing . . emotion.
it’s a . . showstopper.
the fact that the word ‘bricks’ recall actual songs, just gives the whole piece a real ‘depth’, a real ‘soul’, in fact, an actual pictorial record, a code.
a written history of achievement . . which visually matches, the depth and vision – of the subject himself, Ahmet Ertegun.
a real love of music imbues the piece, from the painter’s point of view as well, as it does all of Erik’s work.
look it up.
‘scale’ also plays an important part in this mural, that’s that founder’s motto, “WE STARTED ATLANTIC RECORDS . . .” a kind of a musical/visual interplay, for sure. art and music – so hard to define in words, but esp when they come face-to-face, a real ‘beauty’ reigns. like a 5th dimension.
first he pencils in the outlines of the block letter ‘calligraphy’. all caps !!
this more or less, grid charted, but free-form hand-lettering, also provided some fluidity, helped . . in fitting together the words – as they meet edges of the wall, or shaded-in the planes of the face.
you can just make out the raw . . pencil marks, going forward – as yet, un-painted.
PHOTOS: NANCY SMITH. NOV 7, 2014
ps: for some interesting background . .
read: about Erik’s ‘DAVID BOWIE’ mural at RAG & BONE, KATYA KAZAKINA, BLOOMBERG NEWS.
where it is noted, in a currently – very timely (!!) fashion, that:
“in DEC, (that would be 2012), den Brejeen’s solo booth at UNTITLED Art Fair in Miami sold out during Art Basel Miami Beach with prices ranging from $7,000 to $20,000, according to NICK LAWRENCE, owner of FREIGHT+VOLUME which represents the artist.”
see: ERIK DEN BREEJEN artist page & other images – on the FREIGHT+VOLUME gallery website.
JIM MANGAN . .’BLAST’, a photographic ‘picture’ book collaboration with KEN BLOCK.
DASHWOOD BOOKS, PUBLISHER
the book signing took place last WED EVENING – NOV 19, 2014.
there is an exhibition of photos from the book – running at the gallery,
NOV 19, 2014 – JAN 15, 2015.
205-A, 205 AVE A – EAST VILLAGE, NYC
make that, hyper photographer . . JIM MANGAN
make that, dare devil driver . . KEN BLOCK.
though usually worth a 1,000 words, photographs cannot convey the beauty of the book. it was made to be handled, the proportions are just right. large in plane, but not too heavy, easy to handle, beautiful paper stock, superb reproductions, great rhythm to the turning pages . . . an absolute exquisite cover. simple, but functional graphics rise to the state of an art form.
from . . ‘BLAST’.
damn, am I the only one to seek refuge in this need-for-speed winter ?
the 2014 FALL season on the underground art railroad was such a rush, from ‘PAT’S PIGEONS’, through JOHAN KUGELBERG’S ‘DEATH BY EBAY BOWLING’, the huge heat blast of SATAN CERAMICS, under the rebel leadership of miniaturist – JJ PEET.
the rushing ‘Utah desert’ of JIM MANGAN + PETER SUTHERLAND’S ‘FLASH FLOOD’ at MUDDGUTS . .
not to forget ANDREW GUENTHER . . holding up as the lone, but blazing mind-twister traditionalist i.e. – the guy paints, albeit thought-forms (!!) . . on canvas.
large scale photos line the small storefront gallery, JIM MANGAN took the photos from a helicopter, as driver KEN BLOCK kicked up a storm, and tore doughnuts . . into the earth.
JIM MANGAN, ‘Untitled #10′, 2014. edition of 2, 24 x 16 in.
speaking of which, PATRICK McCARTHY aka the Bushwick Pigeoneer showed up just as we were leaving. I could talk to this kid forever . . he always has a take, and he always is ahead of the game.
his clay work at SATAN CERAMICS not only held it’s own, among a roomful of much more seasoned artists, but his pieces had an mistakable and unique . . ‘voice’. that show was such a blast – there goes that word again !! I was pretty sure Patrick had sold some pieces, and yes he did, a couple of mini ‘coops’ and some zine tablets. and probably more, he gets going and then he shuts up, I don’t blame him, look who he’s talking to – but come on !! how great.
he said they sold 80, or was that 800 ?!! SATAN CERAMICS T-SHIRTS. I think that number was 800, though Kate heard 500, impressive enough, what he doesn’t say is – that he designed them.
anybody with half a brain, who saw his show, PAT’S PIGEON CLUB at Muddguts this past summer – could remember the hand-writing on the ‘walls’, the pigeon supplies, and . . his zines !!
from CARRIER PIGEONS to RACING CARS, now that’s what I call . .
ACCCELERATION, S-P-E-E-D . . is the name of the game on the underground art railroad.
FULL SPEED AHEAD, while the mainstream art world, and all that sluggish artforum gibberish . . all the same names all the time, not one fresh face, have no idea what’s – hit them.
choke on the dust . . wannabes, is all I can say.
losers, move over.
either you have the talent, i.e. the goods, or you don’t, and you don’t.
while the underground voices just keep on . . rushing in.
and taking over.
and watching it happen, is SUCH A . . BLAST !!
there goes that B word, again.
talk about a need for speed, what a rush.
gonna be a big body count, let me tell you that, EN Restaurant and all.
it’s all fake, and it’s all . . gonna fall. fail, whatever.
and . . it’s been a long time coming.
yep, EPIC FAIL about to happen in NYC – watch out.
yep, we are talking . . FLASH FLOOD !!
and let artforum with it’s stagnant writing, not to mention pay-to-play board game – be the first to go under.
PHOTOS: NANCY SMITH
PIX FROM THE ‘BLAST’ BOOK SIGNING . . POST SATURDAY !!
IN THE MEANTIME, FEAST ON THIS . . KEN BLOCK HAD A ‘BACK-UP’ PARKED OUTSIDE THE 205-A GALLERY.
NEEDLESS TO SAY, THE GRAPHICS – AND COLORS, WERE BUILT FOR SPEED, TOO.
BEAUTIFUL PAINT JOB. and LOGO’D UP . . HARDCORE FAB.
THE CAR LOOKED GREAT AGAINST THE NEW YORK CITY NIGHT – WINTER CHILL & ALL.
all the better to get a glimpse . . inside.
wow. now, that’s what I call: graphics . . on speed.
as in . . GRAPHIC DESIGN, and A-R-T – y’all.
BUILT TO SPILL.
BUILT TO STEAL . . THE IMAGINATION, AND . . BREAK ALL LIMITS.
LIKE THEY SAY, PEDAL TO THE METAL.
or, as PETER SUTHERLAND WOULD SAY, in a nutshell: ‘FUCK FEAR’.
THIS CAR WAS KIND OF A ‘POCKET’ – 3D PAINTING, IN MY MIND – NO DOUBT ABOUT – IT.
POCKET ROCKET, or what.
THE BOOK IS JUST AS BEAUTIFUL. JUST THE COVER ALONE – IS ‘DEATHLY’.
yeah, JIM MANGAN and KEN BLOCK are talking . . . ‘BLAST’.
on all . . levels.
PHOTOS: NANCY SMITH
“if you ask for a journey, I guarantee you, you will have a journey.”
DIRECTED, CREATED & PRODUCED BY: JIM MANGAN
DIRECTOR OF PHOTOGRAPHY: ANDREW SUTHERLAND
PETER SUTHERLAND . . IS ONE OF THE ‘ACTORS’.
put a little heat into your heart . . on a cold cold day.