Economics rarely motivate people to go into the arts, and that’s fine — what isn’t fine are smoke-and-mirror attempts at falsely touting fiscal health of “the arts” under the guise of rigorous economic research.
LOS ANGELES — It must have been kismet that I ended up sitting next to Julie Niemi at the ridiculous Dave Hickey lecture a few weeks ago. Niemi is one of four founding editors of the LA-based biannual print publication VIA, which is dedicated to the art, food, and music culture of Los Angeles.
LOS ANGELES — In Scott Reeder’s latest show, he’s made sure to drop in an almost unnoticeable banana that, upon recognition of the fruit, appears as just another prop in an alternate parody universe.
It’s a Museums Free-For-All!
LOS ANGELES — Every day, a weirdo is born. Some people feel as if they have the word terminally painted across their foreheads and need no reminders of their weirdness. Others visit artist Kristin Calabrese’s studio — as I did right after getting off a plane in Los Angeles, a city I’d never before been to and felt strange in — and declare it.
I am always dazzled by at least one work in a Dan Douke exhibition, and often more.
CHICAGO — The Midwest is no place for haters, slackers, and anyone who can’t admit that they secretly love hot dogs and regularly daydream about living on a farm, or at least somewhere in the woods.
Into the dead zone between the sputtering-out of summer shows and the ignition of the new season comes the story of Maurice and Paul Marciano, co-founders of the stonewashed blue jeans empire Guess, and the private art museum they are founding in Los Angeles.
It is a private museum not only because it is, for now, entirely funded by the Maurice and Paul Marciano Art Foundation, but also because you, the public, are not allowed inside.
LOS ANGELES — The Do ArT Foundation of L.A. teamed up with Montreal’s Mouvement Art Public (Make Art Public) this summer to … do make art public. By recuperating unsold advertising space on bus benches around downtown L.A., the organizations brought the work of two photographers to the streets.
In response to the firing this week by the Los Angeles Times of their only art reporter, Jori Finkel, over a dozen museum directors and 1,387 (and counting) petition signatories have confronted LAT editor Davan Maharaj in a two-pronged bid to reinstate the laid-off journalist.
This may sound like the world’s most overwrought art gag. And, certainly, there is no small irony in critiquing the creative numbness of the art market with pieces that will be sold on that very same market. But William Powhida’s artistic spoofs are so spot on, and his critiques so incisive, it’s hard not to get sucked in by the whole exercise.
LOS ANGELES — Somehow, our rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness have become life, liberty, and happiness. Happiness — not merely its pursuit — is now something to which we are entitled. Which we deserve. Which capitalism, with its eternal seduction, has convinced us should be available with each and every purchase. And if we are not happy, something (the right product? the latest gadget?) is missing. Because we should be happy all the time.