Artist and curator SOL ‘SAX deconstructs the mask as an agent of social change in this tight and pithy show at IMC Lab + Gallery. Masks and costumes, an ageless, transcultural phenomena originate as play in early childhood and continue as ritual all the way up to, and beyond, death.
Ellen Pearlman is a writer and new media artist who lives between New York and Asia, where she is a PhD candidate at the School of Creative Media, Hong Kong City University.
DJ Spooky’s Civil War Symphony
The Civil War is still an irrevocable wrent through America’s indelible fabric. As part of The Met Reframed, a new artist residency program at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Paul D. Miller (aka DJ Spooky That Subliminal Kid) teamed up with Jeff L. Rosenheim, the curator of photography and organizer of the Photography and the American Civil War, to present a multimedia interpretation of the exhibition accompanied by violinists, a cello, drummer, and vocalist.
Everything Old Is New Again: Native Americans and the New York School
“The Old Becomes The New,” at Wilmer Jennings Gallery, tackles a particularly overlooked aspect of Native American artistic development – the fertile exchange that took place between the New York abstract expressionists and Native artists.
The Alchemical Art Innovators of Postwar Japan
Fifteen years in the making, the current Guggenheim exhibition on Gutai presents a groundbreaking spectrum of the art of that group, shaking to its core the notion of the West as the epicenter of contemporary art practices. The show, curated by Ming Tiampo, associate professor of art history at Carlton University, Ottawa, and Alexandra Munroe, senior curator of Asian art at the museum, is titled Gutai: Splendid Playground, an odd sobriquet to describe the annihilating force that birthed the group in postwar Japan.
Low-Key Independent Art Fair Has Little Bite
The fourth edition of the Independent art fair, among the plethora of shows popping up during Armory Week, is akin to the children’s tale of The Little Engine That Could, and in the end, it did. Compared to the Armory Show, which was like a trip to Ikea (one exhibitor in fact was selling furniture), and Volta, which dared to be different (I skipped Scope), the Independent was part art community, part church sale, and part paean to art team building that was sure to include nonprofit organizations like The Kitchen, Glasgow International Festival of Visual Art, Printed Matter, and White Columns. It was especially sensitive in dedicating itself to New York organization’s that were hardest hit by Hurricane Sandy, such as The Kitchen and Printed Matter, and not exactly embraced by FEMA compensations.
One Artist’s Attempt to Break into Show Biz and the Art World in One Fell Swoop
Isha is a cinematic work-in-progress both literally and figuratively. Recently a 15-minute screening, as well as actual location shoot happened back-to-back at Long Island City’s Clocktower Gallery as part of the ongoing How Much Do I Owe You? exhibition. It’s a ballsey attempt by Indian writer/director Meenakshi Thirukode to break into show biz and the art world in one fell swoop. Some of it is good, some not so good. But, as they might say in a Busby Berklee musical, “The girl’s certainly got moxie.”
Revealing the Hidden Truths of the Financial World Through Art
After the Gomorrah-like deal-a-minute-a-thon of Art Basel Miami Beach, an exhibition arrives examining the artworld’s underbelly: money, lucre, filthy-stinking-rich moolah, big bucks, hated, denounced, but vital nonetheless. The show asks the question, what, exactly is a transaction? How does money come to dominate industrial production, banking, the housing market, nature, and the social realm? What do we owe, and to whom?
The End of Fun in Russia
ST. PETERSBURG — Jake and Dinos Chapman’s exhibit The End of Fun at the newly refurbished contemporary wing of The State Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg, Russia, is under attack from Russian Orthodox Christian believers, who feel insulted by aspects of the brothers’ show, even though the exhibit is prohibited to anyone under 18 years of age. Offering “extreme apologies” to believers, the brothers vowed never to set foot in the country again.
A Report from Cyberfest: Russia’s New Media Festival
Cyberfest, the first and only yearly festival of international media art in Russia, was founded in 2007 by artists and curators Anna Frants and Marina Koldobskaya. Since that time they have brought hundreds of international media artists to St. Petersburg, and in the process raising its international profile.
David Blaine — Performance Artist or Poseur?
Perched on a pillar twenty feet tall like a modern incarnation of St. Simon the Stylite, daredevil magician David Blaine was zapped by one million volts of electricity for 72 hours during his circus-like performance at Pier 54 aptly titled “Electrified, One Million Volts Always On.”
What’s Wrong With Technological Art vs. the Maker Faire
“What’s Wrong With Technological Art?” was the vexing question posed by the tony New Museum panel assembled by Megan Heuer featuring Heather Corcoran, the new executive director of Rhizome, and art historians Judith Rodenbeck, and Gloria Sutton. The event indadvertedly dove tailed with the recent September Artforum issue about the frayed divide between the art world and technological art. The bon mot award for the evening came from rehashing the 1967 quote of Philip Leider, editor of Artforum, who once penned the uber snarky statement, “I can’t imagine Artforum ever doing a special issue on electronics or computers in art, but one never knows.”
The Light Bulb Moment: Eclipse Debuts in New BAM Space
The British sculptor and installation artist Anthony McCall’s sculptural parallax of thirty-six, 300-watt incandescent bulbs is a site-specific installation for BAM’s new 250-seat Fisher building, made in conjunction with Jonah Bokaer, the thirty-something dance whiz kid. Bokaer was the youngest member of the Merce Cunningham Dance Company, and founder of Chez Bushwick, and his relation to McCall tiptoes around the famed collaborations between Isamu Noguchi and the Martha Graham Company, or Cunningham and Andy Warhol’s helium filled silver pillows. Those collaborations pivoted sculptural sets as integral parts of the choreography.