The Brooklyn Museum has an extensive collection of Spanish Colonial painting, but the institution’s relatively new curator of European art Richard Aste knew the museum lacked the same depth in their British colonial works. Recently, Brooklyn’s premiere fine art institution announced the acquisition of a new work by Agostino Brunias, “Free Women of Color with their Children and Servants in a Landscape” (ca. 1764-1796), which will partially fill that gap but there is something else about the painting that makes it interesting to the contemporary viewer, namely its multicultural subjects.
The Brooklyn Museum has posted an archive of its 1st Fans Twitter art. The Twitter Art Feed was a benefit for @brooklynmuseum‘s 1stfans (formerly @1stfans) members from December 2008 to December 2010. The feed featured tweets by contemporary artists every month, including Joseph Kosuth, Tracey Moffatt, Mike Montiero, Duke Riley, and names familiar to social media art fans, such as An Xiao, Man Bartlett, Lauren McCarthy, Nina Meledandri, and Joanie San Chirico.
Yesterday, PBS talk show host, Charlie Rose, interviewed musician Jay-Z at the Brooklyn Museum. The hip hop star is promoting his new book, Decoded, which, in addition to telling his personal story and decoding his lyric, includes unconventional typography, line drawings, and photographs, which according to a review emphasizes “the author’s message that rap is a form that transcends and defies easy categorization.”
The Brooklyn Museum’s catalog for their Fred Tomaselli exhibition is pretty mammoth for a show that only takes up three galleries. Still, the tome serves well as a way to expand on ideas presented in the exhibition and give a greater view of the artist’s work than would otherwise be possible in the limited space. Just do yourself a favor and don’t stop at the book version.
The diversity of works included in the catalog, from early installations and sculptures to constellation drug charts and later lacquered collages, is fascinating to see, but the ability to see so much at once also comes at a cost.
One might be excused for mistaking Fred Tomaselli’s solo show at the Brooklyn Museum for a pharmacy. Upon closer look, the collaged paintings, baroquely-arranged magazine clippings coated in a thick layer of resin, are embedded with pills the way a microchip is implanted under the skin. Sometimes the names are visible, Vicodin, Oxycontin, even a few Viagras. More often than not, though, the pills only become pills upon closer inspection. From afar, they just look like another element of Tomaselli’s works. Drugs are synthesized into the artist’s paintings, and though the psychological shock of recognizing a pill name remains, the chemicals form just another ingredient.
Yeah, there are drugs in the paintings. Most of them are probably illegal in such vast quantities at Tomaselli uses them. But though that’s the form of the work, that’s not the content: in this case, the medium is not the message. Aren’t we all done with the drug hysteria and fetish, now that weed is basically legal in California and the cliches of the painkiller-addicted housewife and the coke-snorting, bowl smoking banker are just that, cliches? So let’s giggle and move on. What’s behind the drugs in Fred Tomaselli?
This fall is a great time to be in New York. The always interesting Teri Tynes over at Walking Off the Big Apple has compiled a select (but extensive) list of New York museum shows this fall. There’s a lot to see and do and here are some we’re really looking forward to …
There is a constant dual narrative with Warhol between reality and fantasy, the physical and the mechanical, the life lived and the life watched on a screen, and Warhol, in the end, found it all to be one in the same. This exhibit of Warhol’s late work, Andy Warhol: The Last Decade, is no exception to the contradictions and in fact reveals just about as much as it obscures.
The most striking aspect of social media art is that it contains facets of net.art, by being digital; visual art, by existing on a two-dimensional surface; public art, by existing in spaces used habitually by hundreds of millions of people; and performance art, by being inherently social. Whether the aggregate is greater than its sum remains to be seen …
Curator, critic, and blogger Nicole J. Caruth didn’t attend last week’s food event at the Brooklyn Museum but she did get in for the after party. During her post-bacchanalia visit she was able to shoot the remains of the food orgy.
New York Magazine‘s senior art critic has started filing video reports from art events. And on Friday he posted a report from Brooklyn Museum’s “food art” gala created by “food artist” Jennifer Rubell. Her description of the event is priceless … and absurd …
If the image of the Warhol piñata at the Brooklyn Museum didn’t freak you out enough, the videos of everyone from Jennifer Rubell to Jerry Saltz taking a whack at the thing (and right in the mouth no less) will surely disturb you to no end. If the art world ever needed a good therapist then now is the time, I mean even if it’s just to deal with members of the art-ocracy “bashing a gay guy” thing as a form of dessert!