‘LIKE OXYGEN’ – an exhibition about artist interviews . .
OPENS TO-NITE, SAT APRIL 29, 2017 / 7-10 PM
the show runs thru MAY 21, 2017
Bad at Sports
Like Riding a Bicycle
Sound & Vision
MOUNTAIN, founded in 2016 by MICHAEL FLEMING, is an artist-run apartment / living room / gallery
which is open to the public for opening receptions / special events.
otherwise, HRS are by APPOINTMENT ONLY.
MOUNTAIN, 284 SEIGEL ST, #1B, BUSHWICK, BROOKLYN.
read more: about this show / ‘LIKE OXYGEN’
image via Instagram @mountain.bushwick
‘LIKE OXYGEN’ . .
“has dedicated podcast listening stations – with episodes curated by our friends at @badatsports, @artistpodcast (hosted by artist MICHAEL SHAW), and . . .@soundandvisionpodcast.
as well as, these beautifully crafted books . . .
“How Not What” by @hunterbw88, and @katie_hargrave_ aka Like Riding a Bicycle.”
image via Instagram @dresshopgallery
@dressshopgallery: EXCITED ABOUT THIS ONE!
#glock #sacredheart #leather #metal #art #emanuellimon #mexican #jesus #hellbentheavensent #lucid
also, check out: EMMANUEL LIMON / @awkwardchopper on Instagram
‘SIN COYOTE’ – ‘WITHOUT A GUIDE’
EMMANUEL LIMON . . . “SIN COYOTE”
OPENS TO-NITE, FRI APRIL 28, 2017 / 6 – 9 PM
the show runs thru JUNE 10, 2017
DRESS SHOP GALLERY, 322 TROUTMAN ST, BUSHWICK, BROOKLYN
note: apart from the opening to-nite – gallery hrs are by appointment only
for more info & photos, see: DRESS SHOP GALLERY on Facebook
quelle . . brute !!!!!!
JERRY BLACKMAN: ‘UNDONE YIN YANG’
curated by . . BRIGITTE MULHOLLAND
opened WED APRIL 19, 2017
and runs thru SUN MAY 21, 2017
CUCHIFRITOS, a program of ARTISTS ALLIANCE INC, 120 ESSEXST, NYC
HRS: TUES-SUN / NOON-6PM / or by appointment
read more: JERRY BLACKMAN / Undone Yin Yang – CUCHIFRITOS
PIX FROM – THE OPENING:
JERRY checks his phone, center.
I’ve been following this guy for a long time now, maybe even a decade ?
hard to believe. he’s had his ups & downs, so he’s already a seasoned player, and a determined one – at that.
always very interesting, and . . he’s a great curator, too.
JERRY BLACKMAN presents a new body of work, and I do mean . . body !!
as in concrete & . . brute !!
CUCHIFRITOS . . does deserve some mention here, with regard to unconventional . . POP-UPS !!
they were an early pop-up / that became permanent. innovative & set apart from the pack by locale / the gallery / project space is located smack dab in the midst of a bustling Lower East Side indoor street market, on Essex Street, just off Delancey.
on the Lower East Side.
BRIGITTE MULHOLLAND . . did a great job of curating a show of ‘mean-sized’ works – in this small space, for Jerry.
you can read a little more about her, here: CUCHIFRITOS
LOVE that her MA in Art History from HUNTER cOLLEGE, was on . . ‘Spirituality in the work of JACKSON POLLOCK’. (!!)
RAFAEL ROZENDAAL, and AUSTIN LEE.
AUSTIN LEE . . had that great / pink ghostly / austere / dreamy portrait of a girl’s face – at the sweet, yet cutting edge, ‘DRAWING ISLAND’ survey show at THE JOURNAL GALLERY recently.
I’m not familiar with RAFAEL ROZENDAAL’S work, so it was fun to google him: NewRafael.com
I have to say . . eggalone.com – hit the spot !!
CGI animation – never fails to amaze / see: DOUBLE NEVER – NEW RAFAEL ROZENDAAL
LAUREN SEIDEN, is a friend of Kate’s, and we have posted photos from an early group show / see: SHADOWS THRU A PRISM – NOV 30, 2012
where you will see some (now) familiar faces, incl: NICHOLAS STEINDORF, JAMES MILLER & CHRIS WATTS (!!)
& check out: LAUREN SEIDEN PORTFOLIO WEBSITE
painter HEIDI HAHN
see: HEIDI HAHN portfolio website
JERRY BLACKMAN . . plaster, pigments, latex, steel.
cyclical, yet striking me as, very . . stubborn & contrarian ?
a rough-hewn poem.
JERRY BLACKMAN . . almost painting, ALBEIT WITH . . BRUTE FORCE !!
I really did like these works on paper, there were several sets on view.
JERRY BLACKMAN, Graphite on paper in artist’s frame / made of reclaimed wood.
more black magic, than brute !!
that thin waver of illusion, destroyer of ‘objective’ . . observation / yet a mirror, unto the reflective soul.
PHOTOS: NANCY SMITH
BOO! . . GOTCHA !!
micro pop-up / at ESSEX FLOWERS !!
focusing in on, . . . SENDING A MESSAGE ??
on the small scale, free-form curatorial projects popping up across – the city, right now.
including the faux subversive / disrupter adverts – placed into bus shelter ad frames !!
social media & web archiving – are helping these kinds of projects to . . get around.
where you once had huge scale ‘land art’ – in the remote desert / rebels, you now have small scale unconventional space ‘urban’ – art projects / rebels !!
it’s one way to deal with the cost of real estate vs. the huge wave of creativity . . . in an expensive, but creatively expansive . . city / urban hub.
WON EH . .
is the nomme de guerre of NICHOLAS MOENICH’S Brooklyn apartment/ living room project / curatorial space, which he runs with fellow artist LAUREN CLAY.
and yes, the show’s title does reference the Beatles song !!
“Please, please Mr. Postman, look and see, see if there’s a let-ter in your bag, for me ?”
sweet, lyrical touch – esp for those of us who hear sound tracks in our head – at any given moment.
WON EH guest curates . ‘PLEASE MR. POSTMAN’
feat: MORGAN BLAIR, KARI CHOLNOKY, BENNY MERRIS, TRACY MOLIS, THOMAS SPOERDLE
ESSEX FLOWERS mailbox / 19 Monroe St, Chinatown
the pop-up site specific work opened – SUN, APRIL 16, 2017 & is currently still – ongoing, for public viewing.
but, ps: you need to ask a someone in the gallery to open the mailbox – with their key !!
so you have to go gallery hrs / weekends are good.
or: like us . . you can follow along on that micro mother of-all media channels / MOAB, ooops I mean >> MOAC !!
. . Instagram.
NICHOLAS MOENICH – measures the site . . .
image via @essexflowers
the show – is installed.
dig . . that WOOD FLOOR !!!!
and that tiny, but apparently working (?) ceiling .. light fixture – ha.
did anybody else ever read ‘THE BORROWERS’ when they were a kid ?
image via @won_eh
BENNY MERRIS, ‘An Other Another 88’.
image via @won_eh
all the artworks, except for the KARI CHOLNOKY ‘keychain’ / are small scale photo – reproductions of larger originals / ‘digital prints mounted to museum board’.
& according to a DM dialog I had with NICHOLAS MOENICH:
“Mr. Postman was very un-surprised about the tiny exhibit. A true New Yorker.
We just had to make a small change so he could open the box to deliver all the mail.”
TRACY MOLIS, ‘Untitled (Griffin)’, 2015. acrylic on panel.
image via @won_eh
MORGAN BLAIR, ‘Stuffed Cartoon Woodchuck at Church Yard Sale Sees The Future Through a Crack in The Patriarchy’s Palm; What Happens Next Will Leave You Wondering How They Fit All That Cheese in There!’, 2016.
the original is acrylic on canvas over panel, 12 x 12 in.
image via @won_eh
THOMAS SPOERDLE, DHF / ‘Foursquare: Extrovert’, 2016.
the original is acrylic, enamel & graphite on canvas, 44 x 40 in.
image via @won_eh
KARI CHOLNOKY, ‘Keychain hang’.
Kari Cholnoky has larger works (!!) currently on exhibit at . . WON-EH / the curatorial/artist residency – Nicholas Moenich & Lauren Clay run in their Brooklyn apt – living room / 467 TROUTMAN ST, #1A, Brooklyn.
& FILE UNDER: HAD TO . . L-A-U-G-H !!
I had to laugh: because, not only do I collect . . ‘miniatures’ !!
but I even have a few of those tomato red 99 cent store measuring tapes – which Nicholas Moenich holds up – in that first photo !!
and, you can even see . . some of my ‘micro art’ / buying’:
yes, that’s a TOM SACHS masking tape I bought for a pittance, at Printed Matter years & years ago, and there is also his trade marked ‘screw driver’, on top of it, but not easy to see, here.
the small photograph-sized acrylic paintings, on 4 x 4 in. mini-stretched canvases – are by my daughter, KATE CERIGO – back from when she was a student, at Laguardia High School.
ok, yeah. I also collect vintage doll house furniture & anything . . . SNOOPY !!
in fact, that SNOOPY vintage toy, also has a ‘mini’ . . slideshow running in the back – of its head !!
ah, how do you get the bread into the toaster / the eternal question !!
you change the image – by pulling on one of the ears !!
this one is just for . . . NICHOLAS MOENICH !! BOO !! – GOTCHA !!
hey, hey, Mr. Postman, look & see – got something in my mailbag, just for . . THE_E !!
PHOTOS of my miniatures / micro art collection: NANCY SMITH
SARAH MEYOHAS . .
is presenting some new JAMES MILLER paintings, at her booth at the Independent art fair,
in Brussels this weekend / APRIL 19 – 23, 2017.
and they look . . awesome.
SARAH . . . posted this photo to Instagram, yesterday.
photo via Instagram @sarahmeyohas
I’ve known James for quite a while now, ever since his first year at the Yale MFA graduate program, Open Studios – Spring 2013.
I did make his recent one man debut show at MEYOHAS GALLERY, this past DEC 2, 2016.
‘JAMES MILLER: PAINTINGS’
opened DEC 2, 2016 and ran thru JAN 22, 2017
MEYOHAS, 181 East 90th St, UPPER EAST SIDE, NYC
MEYOHAS . . .
is also an artist-run gallery / project space in an apartment living room – except it’s more like the spare apt across the hall. located in a posh doorman building, it’s got a very ambitious agenda, which is the important element . . and, as per the state of affairs for indie galleries now, it’s open to the public the night of the opening, but by appointment only, for the rest of the exhibit.
going there is is quite ‘trippy’ in it’s own way.
don’t tell me the underground art scene in NYC, ain’t the coolest playground there is . . right now !!
you got a living room – you’re in !!
PIX – FROM THE JAMES MILLER OPENING – FRI DEC 2, 2016.
entering the gallery, just another ‘trippy’ living room – on the indie underground, NYC spectrum.
JAMES MILLER, with new work on canvas, behind him – at the opening.
artist SARAH MEYOHAS runs this space, from her home.
NICHOLAS MOENICH and LAUREN CLAY.
they also run a project space / artist residency . . out of their living room, in Brooklyn.
NICHOLAS MOENICH is the curator – who gave us that super ‘trippy’ mushroom show at Helper – last Fall.
and talking about small spaces, he has a small group show he curated – exhibiting in the mailbox at ESSEX FLOWERS, right now.
and actually, it’s quite brilliant.
so, yeah – that’s the spectrum of the NYC underground art scene right now – wild.
with pent-up indie freedom, is all I can say.
LANCE MARCHEL and NATE FLAGG.
JAMES MILLER canvas.
fade – away, done right.
JAMES MILLER, paint on canvas: minimalist – talk to me !!
JAMES MILLER, painting.
changing gears, luminous.
see: JAMES MILLER – INTRO / MEYOHUS
see: installation shots / ‘JAMES MILLER: PAINTINGS’ / MEYOHAS
PHOTOS FROM THE OPENING: NANCY SMITH
while we are on . . .
on the subject of . . . “I’m such a misfit, how will I ever fit in ?” (!!!)
I went to a SURREALIST DINNER !!
a weekend or so ago, Sun April 9, 2017 / at . . SELENA, in BUSHWICK.
since co-incidentaly it was also my birthday . . maybe life has caught up to me,
or vice versa. not quite sure.
SELENA GALLERY . . is an artist-run space, co-founded / co-run by OLIVIA SWIDER and ANJULI RATHOD, located in the front room / living room of Olivia’s walk-up apt in Bushwick, in Brooklyn / 37 Troutman St #3, just off the J train.
like so many new & ambitious spaces popping up, the flip side of truly indie . . is that exhibitions are on full view for the openings only, and thereafter by appointment – only. I think it’s worth the trade-off.
most def !!
the gallery’s stated mission is a dedication . . “to exhibiting artists of color.”
hey, is there a color for . . misfit, outsider, big mouth, bridge burner, lives inside my head, etc etc ?
I do like their logo.
seems like there could be room – to maneuver, manipulate, threaten, and d-i-s-r-u-p-t !!
despite the regulations / I mean, those are . . . forked snake tongues ??
break the damn rules, is there a color for . . that ?
though in the big sad picture, I most def – get !! where they are coming from.
see: SELENA GALLERY
MICHAEL FLEMING . . of MOUNTAIN, also an artist-run / living-room-in-my-apt gallery in Brooklyn, which turns out to be, quite a serious incubator btw, helped cook the dinner.
OLIVIA SWIDER, co-founder of SELENA.
Olivia is . . Mexican Polish / now that’s an interesting romance, her parents must have had.
ANJULI RATHOD, co-founder of SELENA.
ALAN FLEMING, rock on !!
STEPHANIE MACEIRAS, you too !!
NICHOLAS STEINDORF . . center, looking like a surrealist . . Pharaoh !!
yeah, that . . . Nicholas Steindorf. who recently re-created the virtual digital / archival version of ‘UNDER THE VOLCANO: SIMON CERIGO, DAN ASHER, NANCY SMITH’ / for . . JEAN-BAPTISTE LENGLET & his Paris-based web project VIRTUAL DREAM CENTER !!
all the food was based on a cookbook by SALVADOR DALI.
and apparently it was quite obscure, in parts, too. one can only, imagine.
amazing footage screened on the wall just above our heads, surrealist film by the apparently legendary, stop animation artists, the twin bros. known as the THE BROTHERS QUAY.
new to me, & m-e-s-m-e-r-i-z-i-n-g.
the art world is just so impossibly huge, INFINITE. and wonderful.
‘IT’S LIKE OXYGEN’ / next show at MOUNTAIN.
infinite, just like the digital / online web.
maybe that’s why ‘online’ – is such a great medium for artists & why they are thriving, right now.
when politics go south, artists, go: high.
art of the absolute present, WE LIVE IN PUBLIC.
24 hr surveillance, and 24 hr streams on home page / gallery pages. JEFFREY STARK.
contemporary art, modern art, new wave art. new age art. primitive tribe art. pseudo-art. secondary market art, mainstream, underground, & art history / folk art, ‘fine’ art, black art, street art. insider art, outsider art / feminist art, Black Panther woodblock print art, communist era woodblock prints, OBEY.
island art. souvenir art. billboard art. earth art, land art. SPIRAL GETTY. TROUBLEMAKERS. MARFA.
intervention public art. ABE LINCOLN, Jr. / urban abandoned building / subway art. SEAN VEGEZZI.
Burning Man, Native American arts. re-claimed rural art, found art. QUILTS.
new age ceramics, tattoos. even, pigeon art. bee hives & honey. ENLIGHTENMENT.
hobo art, riding the trains, vagabond art. whittling. whimsies.
vintage graphics, retro anything. mid-century modern. all things: DESIGN. and SCIENCE, invisible nano particles,
but esp NASA diagrams. which depend on a lot of imagination, btw.
etc etc / & now also: digital art, video clips YouTube. deleted viral death / crime livestream FB. photo-realism, docs. CGI, virtual imaginary & virtual reality art, post-computer graphic arts, etc etc. fonts. infinite fonts & hand lettering, script. FAUST.
comic book art. illustration. illuminated medieval prayer books. Group of Seven, cowboy art, decorative arts.
‘WHAT DOES STEVIE WONDER’ by NATHAN BELL, opening at Subliminal Projects in LA, next week.
the multi-layered universe of INSTAGRAM.
the secret life of SHROOMS. & the cult of growing fungus in soil. NICHOLAS MOENICH.
JIM JOE. German expressionist MAX BECKMANN at the MET.
EAT THE LEAF . . the earth mother of all bronze pendants.
no wonder it’s spilling out – into people’s living rooms !!
see: QUAY BROTHERS
well, if . . Surrealism had a designated color, it would have to be illuminated / neon RED.
I was just wondering – when surrealism was going to raise its head, again.
for real, ever since I saw . . ‘DRAWING SURREALISM’, at the Pierpont Morgan Library, Jan 25 – April 21, 2013 !!
check out: ‘DRAWING SURREALISM’ – THE MORGAN LIBRARY & MUSEUM
it was funny, how the street scene outside, looking down, from Selena’s big front window terrace – was just so . . innocent.
and, just because:
it’s just so easy to overlook, that most of these far-out, on the underground frontier fer sure . . indie galleries (and ‘blogs’ by the way) are run by . . ARTISTS !!!
ANJULI RATHOD . . PORTFOLIO WEBSITE
OLIVIA SWIDER . . PORTFOLIO
OLIVIA SWINDER, ‘HELLO, LIAR’ . . !!!
love it, another textile artist !! just joking.
I mean . . . DIS-RUPTER ARTIST !!
wow, I’m with you on that message, OLIVIA !!
ALL YOU LOSERS, OUT THERE, wipe yourselves, off. change the channel.
get with the program / think creative. re-claim. re-purpose. re-think. re-search. re-spect.
that’s my work to the left, and those are Simon’s small minimalist / punk canvases, the 3 pieces on the right.
screen grab, see: ‘UNDER THE VOLCANO: SIMON CERIGO, DAN ASHER, NANCY SMITH’
NICHOLAS STEINDORF: WALK-THROUGH CLIP – on YouTube
the first ‘historic’ rendition . . of a pop-up show on 80s art – now recreated on . .
hit: VIRTUAL DREAM CENTER
NANCY SMITH, ‘Self Portrait’, 1985. Tarot card series. charcoal drawing, 38 x 30 in.
I couldn’t figure out the impulse behind these drawings, until much later . .
it wasn’t so much about telling the future – how will your life unfold ?
but more, it was a sense of some powerful inner ‘radar’ . . .
of being able to divine, not the future of people’s lives, but more, in the realm of pure art / being able to ‘scout’ out talent, from its earliest manifestations, as it rose up, in the swirling unknown – of the hard-core . . ‘underground’.
& therefore: under the volcano / off the grid / not on the map.
NANCY SMITH, ‘Mirror, Mirror’, 1985. Tarot card series. charcoal drawing, 38 x 50 in.
it was a very inward, magical process. my drawing wasn’t a narrative . . about what was going on around me, but more: wtf was I doing here, in NYC ?
I didn’t fit in, I was kind of a outcast. I had no voice, no presence, no power – except this invisible nascent power of ‘radar’ – that I felt within, and which mystified – the hell out of me.
at the time, Medieval Italian Tarot decks, and 18th C. Edo period Japan – were a big solace & source of inspiration.
it was both a charmed & demonic / confusing time.
my inner life refused to submit to the standard art world . . forces.
but, somehow in the depths of it all, my drawings always spoke back to me . . with laughter. and mirth. so . . I kept on going !!
NANCY SMITH, ‘Seer’s Vase’ watercolor on paper, 18 x 24 in. ca. early 1990’s.
the show’s curators, KATE & THEO CERIGO, also included a few of my framed watercolors in the show. god knows – they totally got them / having lived with them, all their sweet, young lives . . .
same story, what was going on . . . o-u-t there ??
how . . did I fit in ?
how to explain the visions, the vibes, the creativity ?
if you think about, what you know about – art in the Lower East Side from that period, you can see what a strange character – I was. it was the season of the Pictures generation, photographs, & realism . . abounded.
and I was trying to express in paint and charcoal . . what I was not even sure of . . myself !! trying to uncover some magic stone within me.
trying to divine a path for myself / & find a voice . . to follow.
let’s raise a glass to . . mystical realism !!
we are heading deep into the looking glass / of Magical . . . thinking !!
right under – the volcano / it’s not any other standard variety / museum-certifed 80s artist – that I see / brought to life on – this most cutting edge of artists’ web sites: VIRTUAL DREAM CENTER !!
never recognized by the mainstream – in the mad swirl of the Lower East Side 80s / a key player in WE LIVE IN PUBLIC, in the tail end of the first web tech digital frontier 90s, but still (!!) not recognized / as an artist in my own right.
exploited for my radar on artnet (2002-04) & STILL not recognized as an artist in my own right . . . ?!!!!
it seems it took almost a lifetime, to find my art – recognized & preserved in . . what else ? the vision of the future !!
aka . . VIRTUAL DREAM CENTER, out of Paris /
thank you, JEAN-BAPTISTE LENGLET.
& NICHOLAS STEINDORF, here . . in NYC who put it – to form / himself part of the new wave of young artists invigorating the underground scene this decade, & which somehow, finally gets that my radar & my art – are one and the same.
of course, it would the newest wave, coming to rescue me from the sorry neglect – of my so-called peers.
just goes to show:
what comes around, goes around ?
lol, Nicholas Steindorf who walked into my life, because Kate was looking for a roommate – in Brooklyn, and shook that mundane glass ball, called Craig’s List.
and so the world, my world . . . turned upright – finally.
PHOTOS: NANCY SMITH, unless otherwise noted.
so, all you losers who missed the link, or didn’t have . . 5 crummy minutes to see what I’m a talking about !!
Lordy, why do I even, . . BOTHER !!!!!!
NICHOLAS STEINDORF made a short summary / walk-though of ‘UNDER THE VOLCANO’ / the digital interactive ‘game’ . .
that re-constructs our 2015 pop-up show !!
on the amazing & very futuristic, global-minded . . VIRTUAL DREAM CENTER platform.
it’s so great, and gritty. it has a fantastic soundtrack, you missed it ?
here’s your second chance !!
see: ‘UNDER THE VOLCANO’ walk-through – by NICHOLAS STEINDORF / YouTube.
it’s a video game, you know ?????
except, instead of chasing terrorists in NYC, or gang auto theft in LA, you are looking at historical art / from the incubator Lower East Side in the 80s / in a storefront – on the Bowery & Delancey, in the summer of 2015 !!!
first, Nicholas sets the stage.
yeah. . a pop-up, pretty much on the corner of . . DELANCEY & THE BOWERY !!
NICHOLAS is great with the telling detail. detail, detail, details !!
and, so f-u-n-n-y.
what else to expect from the creator of the – notorious / digital ZACH series,
DIG !! those garbage bags, and the fallen . . traffic cones.
yes, this must be: NEW YORK CITY !!
that’s our show, as it really was, at the center / behind those stereo-typical NYC green construction / ordinance wood panels / & those are our posters, plastered to them !!
come inside !!!!!
DAN ASHER on the left, and NANCY SMITH on the right . . beckon: come in.
ah, those c-r-a-z-y live wires . . of the 80s art scene / how we miss ’em !!!
they knew . . EVERYBODY !!
and they had an opinion, on everyone, too.
no-holds barred. hard-core. but dammit: BEAUTIFUL.
‘RASTA’ . . at heart !!
SIMON on the other hand, was more reticent with the criticism, (in public !!)
but . . more free-flowing with the gossip !!
after all, he wanted to get into every party, and I mean every p-a-r-t-y.
it wasn’t a par-tay, if Simon wasn’t there, that’s . . fer sure.
that’s my baby blue paint, pregnant with baby Kate, gypsy sprite . . on paper at the right, tambourine & all.
I didn’t know it then, but I was a ‘dancer’ – on the tip of the volcano’s edge !!
on the left-hand side, are our brief bios – provided by the curators: KATE & THEO CERIGO.
Simon and mine . . artist kids, by any definition / straight-up from the crucible, Rivington & the Bowery.
and Dan ? Dan . . was like their crotchety old uncle.
spoiling them with sushi, and millions of quarters falling out of his pockets, when he was in the money.
giving them sober life lessons, that they never forgot: when he was down & . . broke.
to think, the ghost of DAN ASHER gets to gaze at my paintings & drawings . . FOR_EVER.
if they were only 2 people, who liked my work in this dumb town, and got it: it was Simon & Dan.
who needs the – masses ?!!!!!
with those 2 . . on-board !!
in a digital universe – there is no death !!
there is no FADE-AWAY.
all – is INFINITE !!
the future – IS THE PAST !!
& THE MATRIX – takes on MORE meaning / when the ‘past’ can get . . a second LIFE !!
if you want to see more !!: ‘UNDER THE VOLCANO’ – WALK-THROUGH by NICHOLAS STEINDORF / on YouTube / approx 5 mins.
to get the entire FREE INTERACTIVE DOWNLOAD: go to . . VIRTUAL DREAM CENTER / 1.1 / 26.01.2017
LONG LIVE – THE HARDCORE UNDERGROUND !!
‘UNDER THE VOLCANO: SIMON CERIGO, DAN ASHER, NANCY SMITH’ . . .
was a look-back . . at a slice of the ‘unpublished’ 80s art scene / when the Lower East Side was in its glory days – and when the raging creativity of that era – was at its height, with many of the forces bubbling just underneath the crust, that made that scene so vibrant, still to be acknowledged – by the mainstream record, even today.
in fact, a lot of big powerful dialog, a lot of singular & stubborn art making, and a lot of hustling just to survive, took place right under the ‘cusp’ of that era’s current mainstream recognition / and which might, & mighty ironically . . actually account for its deep-set dynamic – which seems to speaking, in capital letters (!!) to a whole new generation of young artists today – these are 3 artists, whose work is profiled in ‘UNDER THE VOLCANO’, are just starting to breakthrough / that tough, top layer of volcanic crust.
of the 3 artists profiled, only one is still around to tell the tale, and that would be: me.
all three of us, very, very different artists, but each in his own way; stubborn and unique, visionaries, hustlers, scenesters, foot soldiers, in a word: art world samurai . . . moved through the scene with great activity and passion . . fueling the emerging scene from within, if not exactly bursting through the top of the crusty mainstream, but lending much credibility to the ones – who did.
we raged on, just below the surface with a singular dog-stubborn, inward indie drive – that still, and maybe even apparently more so / resonates today, and hence . . the show’s title.
the show’s formal curators, THEO & KATE CERIGO, brother and sister, (and children to me & Simon) grew up in the epicenter of the Lower East Side ‘volcano’, in an improvised storefront studio/home smack down . . right in the center of the action, on the corner of Rivington & the Bowery. filled to the primal brim, with not only their parent’s art, but pretty much all of the art, and at its earliest manifestations, that would go on to define the era: Basquiat, Haring, Mariko Mori, Walter Robinson, Jack Goldstein, to name just a few. they, Kate and Theo ran around at many a legendary opening – as toddlers, without quite realizing until maybe high school, what legends they had flitted & played among.
there was a huge cardboard refrigerator box scrawled with an early white chalk angel by KEITH HARING in one corner, and an early Medicine Cabinet canvas by WALTER ROBINSON hanging over the kitchen table, in the make-shift kitchen.
we had originally sublet the storefront in early 1987 from RICHARD HAMBELTON, aka the Shadowman . . who took our rent money but never paid the landlord, and who ran threatening crack-fueled circles around us in the streets, on his small frame bike, while he pimped his girlfriend Bonnie, in black fishnet stockings, a block away on Chrystie St.
but then again, there was the infinitely more talented, and perhaps more tragic BASQUIAT, always stopping to say hello in the local bodega, and who signed exhibition posters for them, that we would be able to go on & sell for thousands, to put food on the table.
it was one hell of a rough and wild, crazy scene.
I remember our horror, when upon bumping into a young JIM JARMUSCH one day, with his huge pompadour hair, 4 yr old Theo inquired of him: “are you a nerd ?”.
and so it went, non-stop.
NICHOLAS STEINDORF, who helped curate & shape the ‘UNDER THE VOLCANO’ pop-up, [and fast forward to NOW: was to go on, 2 years later, to produce the archival / digital re-creation – that VIRTUAL DREAM CENTER just released], is a friend of Kate’s, who stumbled into each other through a Craig’s List inquiry for a roommate (!!) in Brooklyn.
Nicholas, who had studied art in Chicago, before coming to base himself in New York, and who later went on to achieve his MFA from YALE, is actually one of the very few, if not the ONLY, one of his ‘new wave’ generation / to have actually met Simon, through Kate. Dan was already gone, and therefore Nicholas got to experience in person, the vast oral Lower East Side history – that resided in Simon’s hard partying . . head.
and he also got to see the his art, and Dan’s, and mine – that had up til then / pretty much been stored away.
and it was Nicholas who pretty much said: Kate & Theo, get this work – out there !!
and, this is a tale . . for the telling.
in fact, thinking about it, as I write this, I do think that it was partly his thirst for art history, but more, his having growing up in the cultural ‘backwaters’ of Wisconsin / as opposed to the rich insider ‘Volcano’ life Kate & Theo experienced, that was in key to this whole project, taking shape and getting off the ground.
apparently – in art, just like in science . . when the forces of the outsider – intersect with the insider elements: a great chemistry – is born.
the card for the show:
archival photo: SIMON CERIGO, DAN ASHER, NANCY SMITH, NYC, Tribeca. ca. 1981.
long live the hardcore !!
long live the underground !!
‘UNDER THE VOLCANO’ – a raging & ripping, pop-up show of underground Lower East Side 80s art – was curated by KATE & THEO CERIGO, with inspired input – from NICHOLAS STEINDORF.
running for the weekend of June 6-7 in 2015, in an empty storefront on The Bowery just south of Delancey . . the opening reception on Sat June 6 . . . was packed !!
all new faces, all young artists !!
and now, it lives on, digitally !!
NICHOLAS STEINDORF, has teamed up with the young Paris-based artist JEAN-BAPTISTE LENGLET, to re-create the show / in a digital format on Jean-Baptiste’s . . interactive artists’ web/game online platform: VIRTUAL DREAM CENTER.
‘UNDER THE VOLCANO’ – has the honor of being the FIRST archival re-creation of an exhibit – on the site.
you can enter the show, and walk around it, as it was built-up from archival photographs,
LADIES & GENTLEMEN . . welcome to the interactive archive of the . . FUTURE !!
to get your free DOWNLOAD: go to VIRTUAL DREAM CENTER & HIT – 26.01.2017 VIRTUAL DREAM CENTER 1.1 / under ‘NEWS’
you can see a brief background & history of the ‘UNDER THE VOLCANO’ digital recreation / also on VIRTUAL DREAM CENTER.
click here: for background / ‘UNDER THE VOLCANO’ !!
NICHOLAS STEINDORF has just posted a short virtual walk-through (!!) – of the ‘UNDER THE VOLCANO’ . . re-creation / VIRTUAL DREAM CENTER . . . on YouTube !!
click here: ‘UNDER THE VOLCANO’ – walk-through / on YouTube . . !!
first, you arrive at . . the BOWERY, JUNE 6, 2015 !!
that’s the storefront / under renovation . . the green wall, with the ‘UNDER THE VOLCANO’ posters on it.
then, you enter the show !!
ps: there is an amazing . . sound track – through-out.
notes about the exhibit – pop-up !!
the . . GHOST – of DAN ASHER !!
‘UNDER THE VOLCANO’ – comes to life, – as you stroll by – in virtual reality !!
at some point, through the infinite power of the digital universe . .
NICHOLAS STEINDORF & JEAN BAPTISTE LENGLET . . were able to add a virtual annex or ‘basement’ that was not available in the real world show – in which additional works are showcased !!
‘UNDER THE VOLCANO: SIMON CERIGO, DAN ASHER, NANCY SMITH’ . . is now global & web – infinite.
archived for-ever !!
who would have thought . . back on the Bowery – in the 80s ?!!
web . . wasn’t even a word, unless you were talking about . . spiders.
UNDER THE VOLCANO,
WHERE THE UNDERGROUND FIRES . . rage.
I’m not so much interested any longer in those artists I’ve known, that are becoming ‘successful’, or even ‘junior’ hugely successful in the mainstream, like the two I just posted: STERLING RUBY, and MICHAEL WILLIAMS, because by this time, usually a decade has passed – and it’s game over for me. it’s old news, and it’s priced so far out of the ball park, as to be purely a commercial, or foreign venture.
plus, so much other new stuff is going on, ripping up from the bottom, with that’s far-out new & compelling – and wanting to be . . engaged with & . . discovered.
not only that, but most certainly to my mind, most of this critic/institutional curator-certified & big gallery-branded work, has powered down, ebbed out. bleed out, lost something in the climb.
what I’m really saying when I post those oldie but goodies, is: I own . . some bragging rights.
I can knock the very first photo down on the table, like the winning ace of spades, and say . . not only was I there, but I called it. and sometimes I even own it / perhaps only a small piece of the action / but at that point, it’s still going up by $2 or $5 thousand a pop. not bad, for a lowly street call.
but, if you are talking about ‘flame’ as in ‘fire’ – it’s the raw depths of the underground, that call to me.
and, it’s not just the newbies spiraling around the volcano’s inner void, that call out.
it’s all the hardcore, driven striver / hustler artists who ‘will’ to prevail, who rise and bubble, stumble and regain a higher perch, hopefully to one day boil up and get spit out – into security and history – that are the most exciting to me. I don’t care too much for credentials. I want the juice.
you know, the ‘naturals’, the ‘insiders’, the visionaries, the goddamn stubborn . . freaks.
and obviously I’m not alone, or you would not be reading this.
there’s just something awesome magic, powerful . . about being holed-up in the deep dark fire-y guts of that volcano, a Dante’s hell of ride, if there ever was one, with just as many circles and permutations, that forges the hardcore hardest of the rotters – who will themselves to prevail, who won’t stop, won’t take no for an answer, who change and mutate, and will not be denied, at least creatively . . that do eventually come to flower, in the land of . . myth.
you know, like . . Memphis.
is – to song writers
and that’s so so so !!
my own little backyard, whether I like it or not. that’s where I lie, those are the cards I got dealt . . . for whatever reason, but just like every other hardcore striver, I’m just waiting, waiting . . to blow the lid off the game, and say hey: by the way.
the last laugh – c’est moi. whether I flame out, or flame up – no diff. I’m damn well playing poker – with that deck of cards.
it’s the only slogan to live for / when you run wild & true / just below the commercial scene / in the pit of volcano – that harsh sea of tossing flame.
“touchdown in the land of the delta blues, in the middle of a pouring rain.”
JOE BRADLEY, wood sculpture. Edition of 4 + 1 AP. GAGOSIAN GALLERY uptown NYC, April 2 – May 3, 2016.
PHOTO: COURTESY GAGOSIAN GALLERY.
even among the heavy hitters, it gets brutal, til there is only – one man standing.
JOE BRADLEY is about the only one of the new super stars – to still hold my attention.
the poster for our pop-up show, ‘UNDER THE VOLCANO: SIMON CERIGO, DAN ASHER, NANCY SMITH’.
the show ran June 6-7, in the summer of 2015, in an empty storefront in Chinatown, right on the Bowery.
curated by KATE & THEO CERIGO, it captured the imagination of a new wave of artists.
based on a newspaper piece by SIMON CERIGO, thecollage features an early photo of the 3 of us, Simon Cerigo, Dan Asher at center, and myself, Nancy Smith, NYC. Tribeca. ca. 1981.
and a young ALLEN GINSBURG at the top.
PHOTO: of the Poster on the Bowery storefront – NANCY SMITH
hanging the show, archival photo: NANCY SMITH
that’s THEO CERIGO at the right, and NICHOLAS STEINDORF at the left.
those are my pieces – going up on the wall.
NICHOLAS would go on to play a major role, in the recent past few months of 2016/17 . . in working with
Paris-based JEAN-BAPTISTE LENGLET . . to digitally re-create the show for Jean-Baptiste’s VIRTUAL DREAM CENTER /
an online artists’ interactive digital ‘game’ platform.
it is free to download, go to . . . VIRTUAL DREAM CENTER
where, you will find ‘UNDER THE VOLCANO’ . . . under: VIRTUAL DREAM CENTER 1.1.
JEAN-BAPTISTE LENGLET / @virtualdreamcenter . . .
has just started posting to Instagram – images from the archival re-creation.
it is shown in the actual ‘kinetic’ format, or flow – as you move through the re-constructed digital space.
this is the 1986 Artforum, that SIMON turned into his scribbled diary – and, on whose page deep inside,
co-curator KATE CERIGO, and Simon’s daughter . . found his seemingly heartfelt inscription, “under the volcano”.
the namesake movie had just come out.
Simon obviously resonated with it’s dark themes, just as many young artists today, apparently find his free-for-all, yet poetic 80s imagery, both inspiring, and historic, even though he was totally unrecognized, in his own time.
Simon Cerigo, (1952-2013) definitely lived the life, of the Lower East Side gadfly in its 80s/90s heyday.
an indie gallerist for a brief few years, he was an avid collector with a golden eye, who depended on his street smarts & art flipping to feed his young family, and who in so doing, set many a career on their way.
he was a true ‘flaneur’- who also liked to party down hard.
he was also a artist, which not too many knew, or would give him credit for.
SIMON is just having his voice – heard now.
be stubborn, brave & strong, my dedicated young artists.
pages from his Artforum journal are found in the menu/index of . . VIRTUAL DREAM CENTER.
SIMON CERIGO, the ‘clown’ on the hill.
all 3 images above via Instagram @virtualdreamcenter
SIMON CERIGO, newspaper piece. undated, (1980’s). paint, pen or pencil, on a New York Times newsprint page.
from my collection, PHOTO: NANCY SMITH
SIMON CERIGO . . probably holds the record for going to the most openings, on a weekly basis, for years.
actually, for . . decades, ever since arriving in NYC, from Montreal, in the early 80s.
he also was known as the art scene’s biggest & best . . party crasher, as well as being, the life of any party.
Flaneur . . was not a title – he took lightly.
born in Greece, he loved to wear sunglasses that made him look like the famous Greek ship builder, Onassis.
PHOTO: NANCY SMITH. Chelsea, NYC. Sept 2010.