~ALFREDO MARTINEZ/The Canal Chapter/The New York Post/Sosinski
PAGE 11 – NEW YORK POST – SATURDAY – FEBRUARY 11, 2006 – PHOTO BY: FRANK ROSS
ALFREDO MARTINEZ, with some of his new work, in the back office, THE PROPOSITION GALLERY, CHELSEA, NYC. April 1, 2005
Photo: Nancy Smith
PROPOSITION artist, ALFREDO MARTINEZ, aka ‘the man who would be Basquiat’ made PAGE 11 of SATURDAY’S NEW YORK POST (FEBRUARY 11, 2006) with a breath taking publicity hound’s dream .. a 1/2 page photo of 4 of NYPD’s FINEST surrounding one of his big gun sculptures on an empty lot off Canal Street, near the Holland Tunnel. The word on the street & from sources in the know, who’d rather remain anonymous for good reason, confirm that the large gun sculpture on wheels, in the POST photo, is indeed an Alfredo Martinez Saturday night special.. Knowing Alfredo, it wouldn’t be a stretch, to assume that he himself, might have been the …civic minded “community member(s)” who tipped off the police to the ‘heavy artillery’ on Canal Street… and supplied the well-timed heads-up to the POST lensman who just happened to stroll by, in time to catch the action! Turns out Alfredo has a show, ‘Arsenal for Democracy’ in a 4th floor loft at 343 Canal St. between Greene & Wooster — who wouldn’t want a 1/2 page photo in the SATURDAY NEW YORK POST, over a 1/4 pg paid ad in ARTFORUM!
(originally posted on the artlovers home page: FEB 12, 2006)
here’s the card for: ALFREDO MARTINEZ … ‘ARSENAL FOR DEMOCRACY – WAR CORPORATISM’ – which ran from JANUARY 27th – FEBRUARY 24th, 2006, at THE CANAL CHAPTER, SOHO, NYC.
the cops confiscated the piece – they hauled it away on a flatbed truck. Another big part of the story is THE CANAL CHAPTER itself. If you like your art served up straight up from the street, 100% pure juice, this is real deal. Run by GUERRILLA STREET ART CREW – 1134 NYC – aka JASON WALL & MIKHAIL (MIKE) SOKOVIKOV aka MIRF, THE CANAL CHAPTER operates a raw loft/art/gallery/event/party space on the 4th floor of 343 Canal St, between Greene & Wooster. With their street cred down, these 2 talented young artists are moving to cross over into the mainstream artworld, with their own art & the art they exhibit.
(see the item: mirf/THUNDERDOG, just below on THE BOMB)
ALFREDO MARTINEZ had a few more large scale – STAR WARS – like artillery pieces, like the one that made the POST, up in the loft … seeing is believing.
THE CANAL CHAPTER
THURSDAY, MARCH 31, 2006
Phone Interview with Ronald Sosinski, Director, THE PROPOSITION
artlovers: “has the F.B.I. been in contact with you, yet ….. about Alfredo?”
Ronald Sosinski: “do you mean today, … or ever”
artlovers: “The SLEEK MAGAZINE article is now available on-line, have you actually read it?”
Ronald: “No, what does it say?”
artlovers: “maybe you better read it for yourself. He makes a blithe comment about the President, he also invokes the Columbia Mafia …. does Alfredo have a death wish?”
Ronald: “well that was stupid …”
artlovers: “he also states that 20% of the secondary art market, albeit ‘not this currrent generation’ is composed of forgeries … claiming to have done several himself …. including a Calder.”
Ronald: “Alfredo has a funny way of showing off and will say anything to get attention.”
artlovers: “don’t Fashion magazines have fact checkers.”
Ronald: ” … in Alfredo’s universe ?”
artlovers: “Keith Haring and Jean Michel will be turning over in their graves – he seems to have appropriated other peoples’ experiences with them, as his own – he never meet them.”
Ronald: “who knows with Alfredo .. but all the rest, about shooting Kenny Schacter with a blank … at an art fair, is true.”
artlovers: “he once almost blew himself up with homemade explosives on the beach at Donald Baechler’s ….”
artlovers: “how long have you know Alfredo?”
Ronald: “.. since some time around 1994.”
artlovers: “THE PROPOSITION gave him his first one man show – ‘HE WHO DARES WINS’ – sometime around 1999 – a pretty prophetic title. Do you think he wanted to go to prison?”
Ronald: “well he dared the system re: the Basquiat forgeries. For him it was a win win no matter what, because of the publicity. His timing was excellent, he actually made it into the newly revised preface to the book on Basquiat, Phoebe Hoban’s ‘BASQUIAT – A QUICK KILLING IN ART’ .”
artlovers: “What do you think about where he is now?”
Ronald: “well, he’s in a pretty good place, finally. He actually was alright in prison, despite the hunger strikes, artists have very high status on the inside. And Alfredo’s big. However the cliche is also true, that you come out far worse, criminally, than when you go in, thanks to the high opportunity socializing contacts. When he got out, Alfredo … and his new friends were a little scary…. but a year later, he’s hooked up to some really good energy with THE CANAL CHAPTER, and now he is on a roll. Only Alfredo can go from the Gowanus Canal, to Canal St, to Soho in the space of 2 weeks.”
artlovers: “did you see the exhibit of his work on Greene St?”
Ronald: “only the beginning of it, we brought the big gun over. We had it showcased at SCOPE, in the PROPOSITION booth. It was beautiful.”
artlovers: “.. well its amazing, they built a whole rough and ready show around it, and placed this huge flowering cherry blossom tree, an actual tree, in full bloom next to it…”
artlovers: …”back to the SLEEK article … one last question: was the part about Harvey Shipley Miller buying Alfredo’s drawing from you, for the Judith Rothschild Foundation collection at the MoMA true? or just another fantasy wanna be..”
Ronald: “no, that’s true. Harvey Shipley Miller saw Alfredo’s work from prison and loved it. It was actually the very last purchase that made it into that collection’s acquistion deadline.”
more info & photos on the Greene St: to post soon.
to see photos from Alfredo’s trial, actually his friends demonstrating outside the courthouse, including Josh Harris, Anthony Haden Guest, and the Enger Bros aka Exploding Sky:
Federal courthouse Nov 19, 2002 and scroll down to the bottom.
note: that ‘s Leo (Lio) Malka at the end of the 3rd row, at the top of the report.
to see photos from ‘Alfredo Martinez: Drawings from Prison’ at THE PROPOSITION, an exhibit of work that was smuggled out of prison and exhibited while he was still inside, go to:
Prison show, Oct 24, 2003