Reactor

Required Reading

by Hrag Vartanian on April 22, 2012

Painter chic? Cutting-edge Belgian fashion house Maison Martin Margiela is selling these paint splatted sneakers for $525 at Barney's in New York. I think you could buy a similar looking pair from a few artists I know for much less. (h/t Gawker)

This week, Keith Haring in the Village, painter chic, 10 songs that saved (an artist’s) life, Kehinde Wiley’s unsettling Israeli show, de Kooning’s “source,” Monet’s ultraviolet vision, Chinese-American photography, architectural stationary and more.

 The blog of the Greenwich Village Society for Historical Preservation has documented the Village haunts of Keith Haring. From Club 57 to his studio PS 122, from his first show at Westbeth’s Painters Space to his more trumphed exhibitions at Tony Shafrazi gallery (then in Soho), they do a fantastic job of outlining the landmarks you should know.

They also published another post on the anniversary of the artist’s death with some more information about places that played a significant role in the artist’s development.

All this gives you some great context for the Early Haring show that is currently at the Brooklyn Museum and continues until July 8.

 A blog has asked a number of artists about the “10 Songs That Saved Your Life.” The nuggets of audio info include selections from John Baldessari (who says Tom Waitts “Sausage and Eggs” was one such gem), Olaf Breuning (who picks Nicky Minaj & Rihanna’s “Fly” among others) and Gary Hill (who selects John Lennon’s “Love” as a significant song). But the creepiest selection is by the recently deceased Mike Kelley, who picks Suicide’s “Ghost Rider.”

 Hyperallergic contributor Jillian Steinhauer writes a review of Kehinde Wiley’s Israeli portraits at the Jewish Museum for The Forward. She mentions that his portrayal of Arabs is problematic (and I would include insensitive) and she is right to point out that it’s a little troubling that the show arrived wholesale from the artist’s LA gallery (catalogue included):

The Jewish Museum is hardly the first to tread this path, but there’s still something disconcerting about vines of the commercial art world creeping into museum galleries like this.

Mary Abbott paintings from the early 1950s are on the left and de Kooning paintings from late 1950s and 60s are on the right. WOW! (via bigthink.com)

 How much does the work of Willem de Kooning look like the work by Mary Abbott (see above)? A hell of a lot, and Abbott apparently painted them years BEFORE de Kooning.

 Did you know Monet had an “ultraviolet eye“? WOW (emphasis mine):

Late in his life, Claude Monet developed cataracts. As his lenses degraded, they blocked parts of the visible spectrum, and the colors he perceived grew muddy. Monet’s cataracts left him struggling to paint; he complained to friends that he felt as if he saw everything in a fog. After years of failed treatments, he agreed at age 82 to have the lens of his left eye completely removed. Light could now stream through the opening unimpeded. Monet could now see familiar colors again. And he could also see colors he had never seen before. Monet began to see — and to paint — in ultraviolet.

 Vintage architectural stationary is quite lovely.

 I enjoyed this short post by Copenhagen-based programmer Pippin Barr (of Marina Abramović video game fame), who explores the allure of video games that many of us have experienced.

 DLK Collection gives you “just the facts” about the Francesco Woodman show at the Guggenheim.

 Salon takes a look at the Museum of Chinese in America’s new show that explores Chinese-American experience through professional and amateur photography.

Required Reading is published every Sunday morning EST, and it is comprised of a short list of art-related links to long-form articles, videos, blog posts or photo essays worth a second look.

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