~SIX THINGS: SAGMEISTER & WALSH .. WRITE
FILE UNDER: didn’t KIM JONG UN .. get the memo ?
SIX THINGS: SAGMEISTER & WALSH
MARCH 15 – AUGUST 4, 2013
THE JEWISH MUSEUM – 1109 FIFTH AVE, NYC
on the road to .. PERSONAL HAPPINESS.
KEEP A DIARY !!
I remembered this short film from when it was first screened to a large public .. at DEITCH PROJECTS back in JAN 2008. a big, bold blow-out show, and a first, or a rare … and a major hit, for a quote ‘graphic designer’ in the art world proper, it was a SAGMWEISTER sampler titled: ‘THINGS I HAVE LEARNED IN MY LIFE SO FAR’. it was designed to make waves; SAGMEISTER, you got your one big chance .. make that shot count !! and as such, this truly beautiful dream-like loop .. read like a fleeting afterthought. not that that is a bad thing, but it was up against a big big gallery chock full of bolder callers .. including being festooned with a huge live/living, and then degrading .. banana wall/quilt .. that spelled out: “Self-confidence produces fine results”, and a huge blow-up 2 story chimp on the gallery’s roof.
the one page title graphics .. of this project were so fine .. though, that I had kept them in my mental file, and how nice to see them again. they are still a beautiful, even meditative study in black and white, west meets east decoration/information composition/label.
and so was .. the poetic narrative .. esp how it unfolded.
what a pleasing, inviting and gentle way to say: get over it. get on it. WRITE.
like the ‘If I Don’t Ask I Won’t Get’ video that fronts the exhibit, this video, which comes to view, when you round the next corner .. projects large, almost life-size, and since the physical space allotted to the show, and this is NOT a bad thing .. is small, you have to view it in a shallow up-close and personal/personal space. which is a good thing. but also a kind of, gets you-off-your-comfort-zone shock, as it creates/forces immersion. it subconsciously attacks your habitual inner space and it gets you to ‘share’. experience and feel. not just view.
a rare plane for graphics . . . the least revered of all art genres, but apparently not for long, the way things have been shaping up.
VASARI, we love ya .. but come on .. get up to speed.
I do love how that initial black and white title page .. leads into such a rural pastoral landscape. it ‘twerks’ the senses, that for sure.
I just got the perfect metaphor: it’s the visual equivalent of an ironwork gate .. that opens, onto a garden.
its also interesting to think on .. what it means, to go from expressing KEEP .. to KEEP-ING.
visually, a box-like font devised physically out of bamboo – that’s .. a big thought, too.
civilization, creativity .. in a nutshell.
and, all just – just in one man-made .. image.
now you know why graphic designer/artists, have dropped the ‘graphics’ part, and just call themselves ‘designers’ .. today.
it kinda strikes you .. ‘personal’, is such a banner word ?!!
plus it’s so .. well, FRAGILE.
it brings up; competition, survival. even the greasy rat who won the Chinese horoscope race. I’m meaning: ethics.
it’s also a feel for how quiet and dreamy, this little ditty of a lifestyle quest is.
I mean that could be, in another lifetime, in anothers hands .. shooting sparking fizzing whizzing blazing fireworks, no ?
or even, electric neon. but it’s wood. yes, I find that: significant.
well, lookie here .. there are fireworks, but it’s more like .. being / on fire.
write a diary.
I write a diary, I keep a blog.
ugly word. damn those early computer geeks.
if only words could be modified .. like fonts.
BUT: diary to blog.
now .. that’s talking about .. setting BIG conceptual/fires.
ps: re those ancient terracotta warriors just visible in the background . . .
apart from the greater concepts of civilization, war and personal territory . .
clay pots and sculptures, are pretty much the only thing, esp man-made – that will survive fire.
I know some artists in NYC, whose dad was pretty high-up in the American chain of command in wartime Korea, as a matter of fact, just saying because .. if you go visit their studio, ok they were twins, you can see this amazing stash of ancient ancient Korean pottery that the GIs made off with, and took back home.
can’t help but think .. that kind of attitude might be coming back . to haunt us, now.
he who takes ancient pots, offends old ancestors ?
MORE PIX – FROM THE OPENING .. POST SOON.
PHOTOS: NANCY SMITH