Archive for March, 2010

The Birth of Quill

Monday, March 29th, 2010

Your "Peace" in the Show: Joe Flood with Keith Mayerson

Curated by artists’ artist Keith Mayerson, the neo-NeoIntegrity (or post-NeoIntegrity) migrates from Chelsea to SoHo, where, 15-20 years ago, it would have been in the capitol of the art world.  The first incarnation at Derek Eller Gallery in 2007 felt like the Justice League Satellite, a zero-gravity chamber of unimpeachable art that surely anticipated Reporta Smith’s recent summoning for “art that seems made by one person out of intense personal necessity, often by hand.”  And this show does, too.

Inside the gallery at MoCCA (the Museum of Comic and Cartoon Art), the show seems as far from Chelsea as Narnia, Gotham City, or Krypton, despite the presence of the Chelsea canonized Mike Kelley, Jim Shaw, Ellen Berkenblitt, Carroll Dunham, and Peter Halley.  And has the Whitney been by to see the Ad Reinhardt collages?

Big balls in a square-paneled world: Keith Mayerson's shout-out

Visitors to NeoIntegrity: Comics Edition might recall recent “visitations” in Chelsea from this alien planet: Basil Wolverton at Gladstone Gallery (2009), R. Crumb at David Zwirner (now), Thomas Woodruff at P.P.O.W. (2008), David Shrigley at Anton Kern (2008) and many other shows of artists working in sequential imagery, grotesque countenance and figuration, and mostly pencil and ink.  Keith Mayerson’s own mini-retrospective and end-of-empire narrative Both Sides Now at Paul Kasmin Gallery (2009) shuttled back and forth between these worlds.

(l) MoCCA Chairwoman Ellen S. Abramowitz, youngsters, MoCCA Director Karl Erickson

Generously funded by School of Visual Arts, a longtime fount of cartooning and illustration talent, Keith’s massive project includes over 200 artists and four or five times as many drawings, paintings, sculptures, and videos.  Hot!  The tiny gallery is packed from floor to ceiling, and you really have to watch your step, too.

Krazy Kats: (l-r) Artists Michael Magnan and TM Davy, muse Liam O'Malley, and artist Scott Hug

The bifocals crowd might struggle with the abundance of 10-pt handwritten text extruded throughout the paneled pages, and there is enough black-and-white action to make any newspaper’s editorial page see red.  But that just means that it’s even more of a knockout to see full-color from chromo sapiens such as Dana Schutz, David Sandlin, and John Wesley.  An “Adults Only” section designed by artist TM Davy includes grown-up material ranging from suggestive homoeroticism and explicit T&A to downright  obscenity – more, please!  Here, you’ll find a really beautiful and moody package from James Siena and a multivalent Shel Silverstein that gazes inward, outward, and downward, all at once.

Gold-Medal winning illustrator Yuko Shimizu, SVA MFA '03

More pictures to come after the rain subsides, but the photos today are from the opening reception last week.

IMAGES: Michael Bilsborough

Tools for Thought

Friday, March 12th, 2010

I am lucky enough to have a brave friend who just returned home after a month of organizing foreign aid efforts from a military camp in Jacmel, Haiti. From her most recent update: “The most amazing thing so far is how many people have a smile and a friendly word to offer to a stranger walking through their nightmare. It’s incredible.”

Maximizing the resources available to them, the chic chicks Diana Campbell and Julie Ragolia bring us Tools for Thought, a beneficent fundraiser event with lots of hot objets d’art to warm your heart and your briefs alike.  Joined by a few curatorially-oriented and well-connected friends, Diana and Julie invited almost 100 artists to select a tool or object relevant to their work or personal life.

African mask from Gordon Hull

“We are looking for a rather unusual donation from the best artists in the world:  a ready- made object…anything from a tool to a book to an old shoe…that the artist will sign and tell a story about.  That object, no matter what it is, will be sold at a silent auction that night.”

(l-r) Shoplifter's synthetic hair, Dan Colen's crackpipe vase, Francesca DiMattio's papier-mache vase

The event originally was scheduled for February 22nd, but in the days leading up to that, the organizers were overwhelmed with queries from collectors, press, artists, and other art world lurkers.  The promised Patti Smith performance might have something to do with that.  Lo, the extra weeks of prep time enabled them to design an impressive website and nearly double the number of artists taking part, which includes current Whitney Biennialinas Huma Bhabha and Aurel Schmidt; Skin Fruitcakes Dan Colen, Richard Prince, Liza Lou, Terence Koh, and of course, Jeff Koons; the recently repatriated Gavin Russom; and those geriatric giants Ed Ruscha and Lou Reed.

Skateboards by X-Games champs Jeff Koons and Marilyn Minter

Personally, I have my eye on the Ofiliated Voodoo Flag by Genesis Breyer P-Orridge:

Hot

And will cower as far as possible from this monstrosity:

"How High," 2010, pencil, mix CDs, and vitamins on paper

This looks promising and easily worth every penny of the Benjamins you and your date will drop on tickets, most of which is tax deductible.  Apotheke, the downtown cocktail specialists, will provide relief of a different kind.  Total fox Alexandra Richards will DJ (hey, u can brw my mix cds lol!).  And did we mention Patti Smith?

“We are looking for a rather unusual donation from the best artists in the world:  a ready- made object…anything from a tool to a book to an old shoe…that the artist will sign and tell a story about.  That object, no matter what it is, will be sold at a silent auction that night

Death Panels

Tuesday, March 9th, 2010

Banks Violette’s second solo show at Gladstone Gallery:

IED prop from The Hurt Locker?

Or Conceptual Framework?

Chandelier! Next show: sconces!

Party in the Back

Q: What do you call it when an electric guitar goes on a weeklong drug binge?

A: Fender Bender

It all looks so bright when your Heart is so Black

You Know Joannou

Wednesday, March 3rd, 2010

Actor Mitch performing Pawel Althamer's "Schedule of the Crucific," 2005
Actor Mitch Conway performing Pawel Althamer's "Schedule of the Crucifix," 2005
Highlights from the March 02 opening of Skin Fruit at the New Museum:

Michael Stipe with serendipitous Bunny Ears
Michael Stipe with serendipitous Bunny Ears

Artist Sue Webster with filmmaker Malcolm Venville
Artist Sue Webster with filmmaker Malcolm Venville

Clarissa Dalrymple de Medici
Clarissa Dalrymple de Medici

(l-r) artists Sadie Laska, Matt Greene, Nick Lowe, Ry Rocklen
(l-r) artists Sadie Laska, Matt Greene, Nick Lowe, Ry Rocklen

THE EDGE
THE EDGE

Cont Art Museum Houston DIRECTOR Bill Arning (6'5") and Ryan (about 5'8")
Cont Art Museum Houston DIRECTOR Bill Arning (6'5") and Ryan Compton (about 5'8")

Roberto Cuoghi: you might remember winged Pazuzu from "The Exorcist"
Roberto Cuoghi's Pazuzu is about 20 feet tall: the winged demon Pazuzu co-starred in "The Exorcist"

(l-r) Gallerist Lisa Cooley, artist Lisa Oppenheim, artist Scott Calhoun
(l-r) Gallerist Lisa Cooley, artist Lisa Oppenheim, artist Scott Calhoun

Assume Vivid Astro Focus mural in Marcia Tucker Hall
Assume Vivid Astro Focus mural in Marcia Tucker Hall