November 3, 2009 at 2:10 am
While I appreciate Kandinsky’s place in the history of modern art, the Guggenheim show was still unsuccessful in making me a fan. I’ve never felt compelled by the majority of his paintings, and the show, the first full-scale American retrospective since 1985, certainly did not sway my opinion. Maybe it’s heresy to not die over such an exhibition.. I think the show was also similar to the recent Francis Bacon show in that having such a large quantity dulled down the work’s impact.
In any event, there are three smaller exhibitions strewn throughout the museum, which are definitely worth seeing, all of which employ an amazingly simple economy of means.
Anish Kapoor: Memory
Anish Kapoor, Memory, 2008. Cor-Ten steel, 14.5 x 9 x 4.5 m. Commissioned by Deutsche Bank in consultation with the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation for the Deutsche Guggenheim, Berlin.
Memory, a site-specific sculpture by Anish Kapoor, is only partially visible from three different views. It’s essentially a hollow 24-ton Cor-Ten steel (think Richard Serra steel) egg, whose exterior can only be partially seen from two views, and whose pitch black interior can be seen from a rectangular hole in an adjacent gallery. It sounds simple enough, but the black void is so understated and beautiful. From a distance, it seems to be a black Ad Reinhardt painting, yet its close-range effects are closer to that of an Yves Klein monochrome. The gallery even contains a line which the viewer is not allowed to pass, which maintains the illusion of a two-dimensional space. Kapoor’s statement “I am a painter working as a sculptor” seems to encompass many of the interests at work here.
Intervals: Kitty Kraus
Kitty Kraus, Untitled, 2006. Ice, ink, light fixture, cable, and light bulb, dimensions variable. Courtesy Galerie Neu and the artist.
Kitty Kraus’s installation consists some sort of toxic seepage emanating from a burnt out lightbulb. Kraus placed a lightbulb within a frozen cube of ink, and allowed the heat to melt the ink, and eventually render the bulb charred and useless. The work’s sparse nature recalls its Minimal art fore-bearers, yet its spontaneity, adherence to chance, and use of small and commonplace objects places it closer to Arte Povera. The work is certainly not literal, yet evokes the current international sociopolitical situation.
Paired, Gold: Felix Gonzalez-Torres and Roni Horn
Felix Gonzalez-Torres, “Untitled” (Golden), 1995. Plastic beads and metal rod, variable dimensions. © The Felix Gonzalez-Torres Foundation, Courtesy Andrea Rosen Gallery, New York.
I love Felix Gonzalez-Torres’s democratic use of simple, everyday objects. I was on the BQE two weeks ago and saw one of his bed billboards… I didn’t know they still existed..
October 26, 2009 at 10:36 pm
Lots of articles about the French and other delights
On a Mission to Loosen Up the Louvre by Carol Vogel
Henri Loyrette, the Louvre’s director is “American-izing” the museum with its masterpiece loans, construction of Louvre Abu Dhabi and Louvre Lens, allowing McDonald’s into the Carrousel du Louvre, and acquiring contemporary works from artists such as Anselm Kiefer, Cy Twombly, and Joseph Kosuth.
Paris: A Twombly Ceiling by Grant Rosenberg
The creation and planning of Cy Twombly’s ceiling, scheduled to adorn the Louvre’s Salle des Bronzes, come April 2010.
Paris Under the Nazis: Happy Days? by Bruce Crumley
Les Parisiens sous l’Occupation par Danielle Birck
Two interesting articles about an exhibition of photographs taken in Paris during the Occupation which suggest an idyllic lifestyle under the Nazis.
John Baldessari at the Tate Modern - Interview with Jessica Morgan
I wish I could be in London to see this. Great interview.
Pierre Soulages at Pompidou Center
I wanna see this show, too!
The Polanski Case: A Gallic Shrug by Michael Kimmelman
Investigates how the French have a history of defending those who they believe have significantly contributed to society, despite any moral corruption they may have.
Robots That Care - Medical Robots and Technological Therapy by Jerome Groopman
Maja Matarić, professor of Computer Science at USC, is creating robots that encourage stroke victims to rehabilitate themselves. The article also discusses how interactive robots can be used to help children with autism learn, and all the complications that can arise with having robots help humans.
France May Put Warning Labels on Airbrushed Photos by Bruce Crumley
Le débat sur les photos retouchées relancé par Flore Galaud
Should Photos Come with Warning Labels? by Randy Cohen
French Parliamentarian Valérie Boyer is pushing to have warning labels on retouched photographs, because they are fueling unhealthy concepts of unattainable Western beauty.
James Cameron and “Avatar” by Dana Goodyear
I guess those are the most interesting articles I’ve read online in the past week or so.
October 20, 2009 at 1:04 am
Oscar Santillan is an Ecuadorian artist pursuing an MFA in Sculpture at VMA.
Failed dawn, 118 fluorescent lights, 2008
Buried sparkle, 2009
Installation, A light glowing through the wall
Buried sparkle, Photograph of a fluorescent light under the snow, 2008
Colored sperm, 2009
Photographic documentation of the result of 7 masturbations by the artist, after having vegetable pigments injected into his seminal vesicles
Memorial, The New York Times blanked throughout a chemical reaction, and a miniature molded by using the dry ink extracted from the newspaper, 2008
The lookout, 2009
Paint taken off from the gallery’s wall, and a scale model created completely by the paint scrapings
Spider Statement, Photograph, 2008
Something that happened after the assassination of JFK
sculpture (electric cable, balloon, fluorescent light, candle)
One Hundred Years
Pinhole camera set up for a 100 years exposure, 2009 - 2109
His blog can be followed here.
October 20, 2009 at 12:29 am
I went to the opening of Rinko Kawauchi’s show Condensation at Mountain Fold Gallery. It’s up until November 28th, and anyone in the New York area should venture out. I bought her book “Utatane,” and there should still be other books for sale. They’re really beautiful and I don’t think you can normally find the books in America, so it’s worth a venture.
October 18, 2009 at 1:40 pm
Erich Consemöller. Untitled (Woman [Lis Beyer or Ise Gropius] in B3 club chair by Marcel Breuer wearing a mask by Oskar Schlemmer and a dress in fabric designed by Beyer). c. 1926, Museum of Modern Art, New York.
October 16, 2009 at 12:01 pm
September 22, 2009 at 2:36 am
September 21, 2009 at 8:45 pm
September 2, 2009 at 10:29 pm
August 26, 2009 at 4:01 pm
Now that I’m unemployed (awesome), I’m working on some side projects to keep me interested. I dunno where this is going, but maybe it’ll become a small pamphlet of artists I like or someting