Prospect New Orleans

Post image for Then and Now: A Conversation with Prospect.3’s Franklin Sirmans

Franklin Sirmans, curator of contemporary art at Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), has replaced Cameron as artistic director for Prospect.3: Notes for Now, the biennial’s latest installment. So there is a lot riding on Prospect.3, which opens on October 25 — especially for Sirmans, whose role at the helm takes him beyond the museum and into the expanse of a multi-venue biennial for the first time.

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Post image for Notes from New Orleans: Prospect.3 Artists Announced

NEW ORLEANS —  Judging from this week’s press events announcing the artistic and venue lineup for Prospect.3, it looks like things are indeed going to be shaken up considerably in New Orleans this fall.

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Post image for William Eggleston Comes Back to New Orleans (Prospect 2 Spotlight)

NEW ORLEANS – Prospect 2 isn’t just about the new or the conceptual or the overwrought: William Eggleston brings a pair of several decades-old works to his Prospect installation at the Old US Mint on the edge of the French Quarter, and together they offer the most satisfying viewing experience of anything I’ve seen so far in this edition of the biennial.

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Post image for Turning a Beloved Novel into Art (Prospect 2 Spotlight)

NEW ORLEANS — Of all the stories about New Orleans, John Kennedy Toole’s A Confederacy of Dunces is one of the most universally beloved. So an artist who attempts to engage it in a different medium has their work cut out for them from the get-go: anyone who’s read Toole’s posthumously published comedic opus already has their own idea of how Ignatius J. Reilly and his world should be brought to life.

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Post image for Re-Kitschifying a New Orleans Post-modern Icon (Prospect 2 Spotlight)

NEW ORLEANS — The Piazza d’Italia generally isn’t high on many people’s lists of Things To See And Do In New Orleans; in fact, I’d guess that most of the tourists who stumble across it do so while getting lost on their way to or from the nearby Harrah’s casino or Hilton Riverfront. They probably no idea that this gaudy urban ensemble, designed by Charles Moore and opened in 1978, represents one of the seminal pieces of postmodern architecture in the country. In his Prospect 2 biennial piece, Francesco Vezzoli adds an extra layer of kitsch to New Orleans’ Piazza d’Italia with his “Portrait of Sophia Loren.”

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Post image for Do You Know What It Means To Dream About New Orleans?

By the ordinary way of reckoning such things, there are considerably fewer artists participating in this year’s Prospect.2 biennial in New Orleans than in the event’s first iteration three years ago. But if artist and provocateur William Pope.L’s piece for the exhibition turns out according to schedule, there will be a lot more artistic visions on view around New Orleans this fall than the smaller number of artists might lead you to expect.

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Post image for What To Do At Prospect 1.5’s Comeback Opening

Prospect.1 New Orleans was the biggest biennial ever staged on US soil, and that’s the least of the accomplishments of Dan Cameron’s 2008 exhibition. The show brought attention to what continues to be an area badly damaged by disaster and in danger of falling out of the public eye. Prospect 1.0 was a symbol of the resurgence of the city and the ability of contemporary art to provoke, possibly the height of the current biennial miracle vogue. The exhibition collected an international crew of artists and brought them to New Orleans to create projects that reacted to a local context. But two years later, what’s on for the show’s next incarnation?

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Essays

Ghosts of Disaster in New Orleans

by Ian Epstein on October 8, 2010

Post image for Ghosts of Disaster in New Orleans

New Orleans — The captain’s flight-deck announcement that we were now making our final descent towards New Orleans jolted me from a very uneasy sleep. The three-hour flight was my first prolonged opportunity to get prolonged (i.e. 3-hours rest) after a late night train ride, to a later night Long Island Railroad Road ride, to a crack-of-dawn flight departure from the 24-hour nightmare microcity that is New York’s JFK airport.

Confused and groggy I peered out the window as we began our descent. With eyes as bleary as my thoughts, I decided that I was surveying Gulf waters from some 25,000 feet. What are those dark streaks? I thought. Is that oil? Oh my god, that’s oil. There’s still oil everywhere. Holy shit. Oh no. They ruined the Gulf.

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