Sunday, January 31, 2010
In the past, the Grammy Awards has been a mixed bag of the melting pot of what American music has to offer. This year's performances had some kind of electricity that was contagious. Starting with Lady Gaga and Elton John's amazing duet to Beyonce and the Black Eyed Peas who both practically blew off the roof, to Pink's touching and incredibly sensual performance of "Glitter in the Air" where she was lifted into the air, spun on a trapeze and was dipped in water and lifted up again, all while singing her heart out live and twirling into a frenzy. It had the audience in tears...
Had a great day yesterday passing the Chelsea Hotel on the crosstown bus, thinking of the history of the place and its legendary inhabitants (including Leonard Cohen, Patti Smith and Robert Mapplethorpe). Despite the frigid temperature outside, I had a wonderful time visiting the delightful shows of Andy Warhol and Annette Lemieux at Paul Kasmin's two spaces, breathtaking abstractions by German painter, Christian Hellmich at Lehmann Maupin, the ethereal worlds of Patti Smith and Steven Sebring at Robert Miller, Anthony McCall at Sean Kelly (I had a nice private conversation with him discussing his mystical work), the fascinating Superflex, a Danish collaborative at Peter Blum with a must see 21 minute film entitled, Flooded McDonald's, and the hypnotic Gelitin show at Greene Naftali with blindfolded scantily clad men and their assistants creating sculpture for an audience with piano accompaniment. Nothing like interesting visual art to warm the soul...Image: Superflex, Flooded McDonald's, 2009 at Peter Blum Chelsea.
Friday, January 29, 2010
Dakota Fanning and Kristen Stewart star in this film about Joan Jett, Cherie Currie and The Runaways, directed by artist, Floria Sigismondi premiering at Sundance...How can I resist watching these two looking exactly like the way I dressed in high school? I had the same jeans, shag haircut and Buffalo platform sandals... Can't wait.
Can't wait to see these two concurrent exhibitions, The Visible Vagina at David Nolan Fine Art and at Francis M. Naumann Fine Art...Inspired by the Eve Ensler's Vagina Monologues, it's even ruffling the most esteemed critic's feathers who can't even seem to utter the word. In the early 90's in my first gallery space, ARENA in Soho I exhibited the work of an artist, Judith Braun, then known as Judith Weinperson with a show entitled, Sacred Order of the Burning Bush. She created an enormous, red wall-size abstracted photographic self-portrait of her female genitalia. The reactions of the visitors were of shock and delight... Image above: Carolee Schneemann, Paralell Axis Lying Down, 1975 at David Nolan Fine Art
Thursday, January 28, 2010
Some of the most dynamic women artists in the contemporary art world are premiering their films this week at the Sundance Film Festival 2010; Pipilotti Rist with Pepperminta, Shirin Neshat with Women Without Men and Sam Taylor-Wood's biopic of the young John Lennon with Nowhere Boy. Can't wait to see what these brilliant women present.
After reading about the torn Picasso a few days ago, it's amazing how many freakish accidents have happened to masterpieces over the past few years. This 15th-century marble statue by the Venetian sculptor Tullio Lombardo from the Metropolitan Museum of Art's collection toppled off a buckled base a few years ago. It looks like a restorer's dream: to mend Adam...
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
Last year I launched Art/Picnic/Yoga Excursions, a special outing to Governors Island that included a yoga session by some of the best yogis in NYC, a picnic carefully chosen and an art tour that I gave of exceptional exhibitions on the island. It was an incredible experience that I hope to repeat this year. I see that yoga and food is becoming a trend as in this story, When Chocolate and Chakras Collide by Julia Moskin in today's New York Times. Photo: Tom Cenicola
Tuesday, January 26, 2010
Excited to hear Joanna Newsom is coming out with a triple album entitled, Have One on Me, available on Drag City Records February 23rd. Here's one of the songs,'81. Saw her once at Webster Hall and she is mesmerizing..No one like her.
Read an excerpt from "Just Kids" in Rolling Stone of the fascinating early years of Patti Smith and Robert Mapplethorpe's relationship as young struggling artists in NYC. Fascinating read of a humbler time in New York when everything was cheap and magical. Patti Smith & Steven Sebring (who made a film, Dream of Life about her) are currently showing at Robert Miller Gallery.
Monday, January 25, 2010
Look at the gleam in the eyes of this seasoned 13 year old paparazzo, Austin Visschedyk. A new doc, Teenage Paparazzo by Adrian Grenier premiering at Sundance this week looks intriguing. Listen to Elvis Mitchell's interview with the new director of the Sundance Film Festival, John Cooper.
I didn't know whether to laugh or cry when I read this morning in the New York Times that a woman had accidently fallen during an adult education class and tore a rare masterpiece, The Actor (1904) by Picasso at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Sunday, January 24, 2010
I saw a report this morning about an amazing singer, Melody Gardot. As I am an avid biker, I was amazed to hear that after she experienced a near fatal biking accident, it was music that saved her life. I think she's one of the best jazz singers today...Listen to Worrisome Heart and Baby I'm a Fool...
Still thinking about the bizarre imagination of Derrick Adams. His show, Welcome to Monument City at Collette Blanchard Gallery on the L.E.S. sticks with you. All his references to brick walls always remind me of the cult classic by Wolf Rilla, Village of the Damned. Featured above: The Root of it All.
Saturday, January 23, 2010
Friday, January 22, 2010
I've been reading, Various Positions, a fascinating bio on Leonard Cohen and interestingly enough, Justin Timberlake and Matt Morris sang Hallelujah on Hope for Haiti Now. One of the best and most touching performances of the evening. I've seen Rufus Wainwright perform this many times and it's heartwrenching.
Had a wonderful stroll today on the L.E.S. checking out some exhibitions. Diane Carr's solo show at Gallery Satori was just what I needed. I've known and followed her work for a few years now. I've shown the work of her close confidant, Doug Morris at ARENA and in group shows I've curated at other galleries. I think they're both amazing...
Before Jay-Z and Alicia Key's celebratory video of this great city, there was Paul Strand's and Charles Sheeler's great silent film, Manhatta. Here it is with title quotes by Walt Whitman and a new soundtrack by Sinc.
Thursday, January 21, 2010
Recently I rode my bike at dusk to see the opening of Double Take, an exhibition at Metrotech produced by the Public Art Fund. This sculpture, Pilgrim Ghost by Johannes VanDerBeek is pure magic. Photo: James Ewing
Wednesday, January 20, 2010
Please check out Alexandra Peers' article in New York Magazine's online Vulture Column entitled, How Jeffrey Deitch’s MOCA Appointment Changes the Art World. I'm quoted in the section with the heading Burlesque Dancers and the New York Avante-Garde...
Tuesday, January 19, 2010
One of my favorite singers and songwriters, Kate McGarrigle passed away yesterday. She was always there at the concerts I attended for her children, Rufus and Martha when they were just starting out. Although they never were officially a "group" they would always support and perform together.
Monday, January 18, 2010
Is there anyone more enchanting than Tilda? Ryan McGinley captures her unique beauty in this mystical short film.