~THE BRUCENNIAL – ‘GIRLS ONLY’ !!
like I said about the whole FAIR WEEKEND in general,
too many MARNIES, not enough . . LENAS !!
though there were a few good live wires, for sure.
THE LAST BRUCENNIAL – ‘GIRLS ONLY’
it’s still up, runs: MARCH 7 – APRIL 4, 2014
837 WASHINGTON ST – MEATPACKING DISTRICT, NYC – HRS: WED-SUN / 12-6 PM
I started off writing this, first by tracking the web – to see if I was right about the WHITNEY BIENNIAL. check.
I had called it as lousy, way before it happened – just from the Whitney press / advance curator line-up & kinda stalking their ‘accomplishments’ online. when it’s piles of crap, oops I mean text – and no strong images, not one spark, not one live wire in sight, you know right away – it’s a lost cause. in a city that has kids like 15 WARREN ST throw up a cutting edge group show, high on the talent, coming straight down on issues, and with a super exciting & dynamic presentation, all done with NO budget, a ‘found’ venue, and only 3 weeks to get it altogether, sorry this is just NOT acceptable.
you don’t have to take my word for it,
check out: “WHITNEY BIENNIAL DISAPPOINTS . . .” – ANDREW RUSSETH, THE GALLERIST !!
he did make an interesting observation:
“In a sense, though it feels like an honest description of today’s art world, which is deeply riven, between money and the museum, pop culture and the underground, and marked by competing visions. The Biennial captures – or is perhaps just caught up in – this fraught, tense moment, but it is unable to make anything fruitful out if it”.
of course being ALL WOMEN, doesn’t mean . . the wars stop !!
personally I think they just heat up – and get more vicious.
contrary to this image which states: all men fight, all women embrace. (?)
o.k. maybe they are . . arm wresting ?
but it does let the genie out of the box, and really it stood out for me, for it’s pure visual graphic and strength of imagery vs 3/4 of what was . . some very bad art, some very, very wishy-washy stuff. just look at the rest of the stuff in the photo. ugh.
and, jeez – down with ‘re-invigorating’ abstract art – already !!
well, anyway . .
after reading that Gallerist take on the BIENNIAL, I noticed MICHAEL H. MILLER, also of the Gallerist – had penned a lyrical, even POETIC low-down on the BRUCENNIAL, titled: ‘LADIES NIGHT’ – !!
I had to laugh because almost word for word he had captured my issues, and where we diverged . . it was like a perfect mirror image !! I mean it was such a huge offering, the show – with hundreds of art works, and yet our top ten list matched up . . like MAGIC !!
though at some point, he veered more mid-level blue chip, which I found succinctly BANAL. whereas I being more of a hardcore ‘scout’ dog . . veered more solid underground – maybe that’s to be expected. but my thinking is: give me an A or give me underground, and skip the mediocre.
as in . . CAROL BOVE – Peacock feathers ? give me break, so done with that, and years ago.
but, the shared conclusion is clear.
no, the masses do not rule. and the art zone is a pretty harsh place .. itself !!
a real . . cutting floor !!
if, you don’t like the heat – for sure, stay out of the art kitchen.
like I said, live wires are hard to come by, but in a roomful of wishy-washy wannabes – they sure stand out . . “GIRLS” !!
MICHAEL MILLER started his post . . with this statement:
“an email leaked last night from a ‘BRUCE INSIDER’ said that several men had snuck into the show using fake names.’ – !!
we both ALSO agree that the BHQF/BRUCE HIGH QUALITY FOUNDATION can’t be taken so ‘seriously’, meaning, they joke around !! so . . serious, schmerious / enough already with the art world !!
critics & collectors alike, enter at your peril.
‘RAQUEL NAVE’, I just don’t know, if I believe that, either.
ESTHER RUIZ ?
damn if I didn’t stop flat in my tracks for this piece. so hard, so hardcore, so with . . LIGHT !!
the way a woman could be . . with child.
succinct, contained, brief and yet . . completely open to worlds of speculation . . and poetry.
I wanted to pick this up and walk away with it. like a futuristic suitcase under my arm.
strike me dead, if I am wrong, but this so looks like a BHQF ‘founder’ . . artwork.
if not, then I’m awarding it best ANDROGYNOUS piece in the show, and my sincere apologies, Esther – whoever you are !!
at the top of his list, and mine:
1. ANTONIA MARCH’S . . ‘Toilet Bowl’ with the seat removed and the words ‘GIRLS ONLY’ written on the side.
check !! so hard-surfaced and so . . hard-core.
so right on. think about it. does girls’ art belong in the can ?
does basing a show solely on gender . . belong in the can ?
does this amount to a true representation across the board, NO.
do democratic art shows belong in the can / is the ‘toilet’ – the missing curatorial vision ?
how about just jail ‘bait’ for the many so-called critics in this town – whose writings veer heavy on the art historical associations, with little else in the way of creative or truly ‘evaluative’ musing ?
plus such a nice hard ‘foil’ to all the ‘re-invigorated’ abstract art, and wishy washy girly stuff.
it was like bumping into a wall, in a roomful of creative ‘haze’.
the rough black script – was good too.
2. MICHAEL MILLER also liked:
DANIELLE HO’s “wispy” portraits of PHILLIP SEYMOUR HOFFMAN.
hard to believe, I know, but the art world is NOT that self-involved that it doesn’t take note of the tragedy of dead ‘poets’, missing airplanes, and, are we, or are we not – at war ?
BANKSY goes one-on-one with SYRIA – in TIMES SQ today / google it.
RAQUEL NAVE / BRUCENNIAL / 2014.
MICHAEL MILLER liked . .
3. “VITO SCHNABEL, the BHQF’s dealer canoodling with HEIDI KLUM”.
damn dude, don’t you have a cellphone – I mean just cause you are a writer doesn’t mean you can’t catch a photo every now and then, the line between writer and paparazzi isn’t really all that wide.
it’s called: OBSERVATION 101 !!
well anyway, I’m sure Michael Miller did NOT pull a CHARLIE FINCH, and yell out at the top of his lungs, VITO LOVES THAT MOTHER’S MILK !!
we are both likin’ it – but I would have grabbed a photo.
and come on, this is the stuff of what . . makes the world turn.
though speaking of which. and CHARLIE FINCH.
OMG do we really need another artinfo / gungho high school version . . re-spilling the aggregate press releases ?
dumbing down . . the art. and the scene.
damn, artnet news. if it’s not the death of artnet – as we knew it.
and, the PATRICK McMULLAN photos ? yours to love, losers !!
4. MICHAEL MILLER liked:
“A photograph of a JENNY HOLZER installation that featured these words projected on the side of a building: ‘To acquire a political meaning you don’t even have to be human. Raw material will do, or protein feed, or crude oil.’ ”
5. MICHAEL MILLER liked:
“A wood sculpture by Z. BEHL of an antelope skeleton, into whose rib cage a naked man stepped. he waited there for most of the opening, silently standing as if in the frame of a guillotine and ready to accept any jeers from the crowd.’
well, not an hour or so, into the opening, it was a CHICK inside the antelope. photos don’t lie. the big diff ?
the boy was hairy, and the chick was . . buff.
but, that ‘guy’ to ‘girl’ transformation – wasn’t the only thing that changed – with the night !!
6. rolling in at number 6 – on the MICHAEL MILLER liked list:
he ended his post, thus:
“A European man who asked me, ‘Is there a price list?'”
he thought it was pretty damn droll that a man had approached him to inquire after the . . ‘price list’.
it was a one-liner that we all got !!
no matter how you defined it.
1. how could you ask, of course there is a price list.
2. well, who expects a group that stands for such playful ‘subversiveness’ – to have a price list.
(we do !!)
3. more likely scenario:
they never ever get it together to have one ready, and printed out – by opening time.
a very par-for-the-course kind of thing for big / amateur type / ad hoc art shows of this nature, and a big headache, a boatload of ‘grief’ for all writers . . who then find it impossible to correctly attribute & describe the work.
and, I thought my price list experience was pretty funny too.
for an ‘alternative’ show.
I had a gallerista, on the VITO SCHNABEL staff, yes I asked . . .
approach me, and inquire upon seeing how intently I was viewing the work . .
“if I’d like to see .. the price list ?”
Price list. priceless.
normally I would not document the ‘staff’, but damn if I didn’t catch her in the ambiance.
so, o.k. I didn’t catch VITO and HEIDI, but I caught the . . ‘PRICE LIST’ !!
JUDY CHICAGO PLATE / BRUCENNIAL 2014
I hated all that in your-face-explicit porn feminist stuff. all of it.
Mr. Miller admired quite a few of it, in fact all of it.
stuck on the floor, stuck on the wall.
this archival Chicago piece was as close to va jay jays – as I wanted to get !!
so we differed there.
on that, we – parted ways.
it was a fun opening, MORE PIX TO FOLLOW !!
PHOTOS: NANCY SMITH