Artists and Fashion Designers Team Up in Some Unexpected Places

Several arts-related shows and exhibitions are cropping up in fashion-friendly places.
As part of an ongoing effort to showcase artistic programs, Spring Place will be staging “Infoxication” Monday night.
The 50-minute multidisciplinary performance will feature art, music, dance and technology. The theme is technology’s presence in our lives. Infoxication is the latest arts-related collaboration at Spring, with the American Ballet Theatre and the Water Miller Center being others. Monday’s will be the first full production, and the largest one to date, with more than 20 collaborators, according to Spring Place’s art director, Roya Sachs. The full immersive experience includes product support from Google — Pixelbooks and Pixel phones. “It’s definitely in the vein of trying to create these more impactful and interactive programming and performances,” Sachs said.
The four-part experience is meant to take audience members on a visual, physical and mental journey. Ticket holders will learn the story of “waking, working, wanting and withdrawing.”
Collaborators include choreographer Dusan Tynek, a world premier composition by Danielle Eva Schwob, live body art by Heather Hansen, and performances by PubliQuartet and cellist Inbal Segev. Schwob said Friday, “Our goal has been to provide an even-sided take on people’s daily lives. It’s very easy to talk about

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An Idyllic Artists’ Retreat that Invites Guests to Take in the View

With help from architect David Chipperfield, Antony Gormley and Vicken Parsons have transformed an 18th-century villa in Norfolk, England into an inspiring retreat for artists.
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She Gave Millions to Artists Without Credit. Until Now.

The artist Susan Unterberg, acting anonymously, has distributed more than $ 5.5 million over 22 years to 220 underrecognized female artists over age 40.
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Artists Who Lose Their Vision, Then See Clearly

Eight artists found new ways to see after learning they had macular degeneration. “Nothing to lose is a kind of new freedom,” says one of them.
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L.A. Beauty Agency Forward Artists to Open New York Outpost

Los Angeles-based beauty agency Forward Artists, which represents top talent in the hair, makeup, styling and grooming fields – including wardrobe stylists Rob Zangardi, Mariel Haenn and Micaela Erlanger, makeup artists Pati Dubroff and Melanie Inglessis and hair stylists Giannandrea and John D – has opened a New York office.
Founded in 2014, Forward Artists has defined itself by promoting transparency between agents, artists & clients as well as offering artists greater control over their careers.
Noted Dubrof, “I’m proud to be part of an agency that truly values the artist and agent relationship by fostering the communication needs of both. A bicoastal presence will open exciting new doors for growth and collaboration with New York artists and clients.”
Said cofounder Spencer Spaulding, “We’ve had many artists and clients reaching out wondering if/when we planned on opening in New York but I only wanted to do it if it happened organically. Growth has been mindful to ensure a healthy business and that artists are properly taken care of. We have never wanted to blow-up into a monopoly of artists. We want to stay boutique and high-end so we can serve each and every one of our artists with a bit more of a

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13 Drugstore Beauty Products Makeup Artists Swear By

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Art Review: 30 Must-See Artists at the Armory Show

Brave the winter weather for Piers 92/94 in Manhattan, and you’ll find a great mix of works from Cuba, Norway, the Netherlands and more.
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4 Athletes Selected as Artists in Residence at the Olympics

For this year’s creative program, the International Olympic Committee is calling on some familiar faces.
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In Puerto Rico, Artists Rebuild and Reach Out

Visitors to the post-disaster island found many artists eager to help one another, and their communities.
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Which British artists topped the 2017 album chart?

British artists made eight of the top 10 best-selling albums of 2017 – with Ed Sheeran leading the way.
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Li Edelkoort to Open Paris Gallery to Spotlight Artists, New Voices

WATCH THIS SPACE: Having first opened a private art salon in Paris more than three decades ago, Trend Union founder Li Edelkoort will soon take her career full circle by unveiling a public design gallery in her company’s headquarters.
Set to open its doors Jan. 18 at 30 Boulevard Saint-Jacques, the space will showcase design and arts and crafts — “what deserves to be shown collected and cherished at this moment in time,” according to the trend forecaster. To that end, a Heartwear pop-up shop will be among the planned events.
Created in 1993 by Edelkoort and some of her fashion designer friends, Heartwear is a nonprofit that collaborates with artisans by helping them scale up their creations without compromising their design integrity, culture or environment that they live and work in. With the assistance of department stores and magazines, Heartwear develops high-level goods with broader distribution. The nonprofit’s aim is to create a lasting connection with a collective or region. Khadi cotton from India and indigo-colored textiles from Benin are two of the projects that have been executed. To try to help the specific regions become self sustainable, profits are reinvested in those where the artists are based.
Trend Union will also

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Their Words to Live By: Artists We Lost in 2017

Artists who died this year left behind gripping scenes, profound turns of phrase, unforgettable melodies and plenty of laughter. We pay tribute to a few of the most notable — through their own words.
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And the most streamed artists of 2017 are…

Spotify has released its most streamed list of 2017 – the year when streaming officially became the biggest indicator of success.
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BBC Music Sound of 2018: Will these artists define the year?

The BBC announces its Sound of 2018 longlist. Who will be this year’s Adele or Sam Smith?
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2017 CMT Artists of the Year Red Carpet Arrivals: See Keith Urban, Nicole Kidman and More Stars

Nicole Kidman, Keith Urban, 2017 CMT Artists Of The YearCountry music’s biggest stars are ready for a night of hope and healing.
The 2017 CMT Artists of the Year special is finally here with Chris Stapleton, Florida Georgia Line and more…

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Art Review: From Innovation to Provocation, China’s Artists on a Global Path

East (minus 3) meets West at the Guggenheim, in what Holland Cotter calls a “powerful, unmissable event” about a world we are still getting to know.
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Lin-Manuel Miranda and Artists for Puerto Rico Release Hurricane-Relief Song ‘Almost Like Praying’ (Listen)

“Hamilton” mastermind Lin-Manuel Miranda has collaborated with an all-star lineup of artists to release “Almost Like Praying,” a hurricane relief single in support of Puerto Rico. Proceeds from the song, which was released Friday morning, will go to the Hispanic Federation UNIDOS Disaster Relief Fund. In addition, YouTube will make a contribution to the organization. Recorded […]

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Instead Of Focusing On Yesterday’s Monuments, Artists Are Building Tomorrow’s

A years-long project in Philadelphia called Monument Lab asks, “What monuments would we build to reflect our values as a city?”
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Three Top Interior Stylists on Their Favorite Hotels, Artists, Buildings and More

Forces in the field apply their discerning taste to the curation of their favorite things.
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Robert Downey Jr warns fans about online ‘scam artists’

But fans reply by saying they have sniffed the impostors out – and got their own back.
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Instead Of Focusing On Yesterday’s Monuments, Artists Are Building Tomorrow’s

A years-long project in Philadelphia called Monument Lab asks, “What monuments would we build to reflect our values as a city?”
Arts
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Books of The Times: An Artist’s Childhood, Etched in Trauma and Abandonment

In her epistolary memoir, “The Book of Emma Reyes,” the Colombian painter recounts her childhood in Bogotá, made vivid by the horrors of the workhouse.
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At Creativity Explored, Artists With Disabilities Express Their Own Sexuality

“Just because someone has a developmental disability doesn’t mean that sense of sexuality is non-existent.”
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Watch Street Artists Repaint New York’s Lower East Side

Market Surplus raised over $ 6,000 dollars for the Lower Eastside Girls Club.

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Artists turn hateful tweets into loving artwork

A group of artists are fighting online prejudice against the LGBT community by producing work inspired by troll tweets.
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In Detroit, Artists Explore the Riches of the 99-Cent Store

For a summer exhibition titled “99 Cents or Less,” the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit has begun to resemble a dollar shop.
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Kehinde Wiley Paints The Formative Black Artists Of Our Time

In mythology, the trickster is an archetypal character that takes many shapes ― animal, human and divine ― distinguished by intellect, cunning, a penchant for mischief, and an aversion to rules, lines and norms of all kinds. In African folklore, the trickster takes shape through Anansi the spider; in America, Brer Rabbit; in France, Reynard the Fox. In pop culture, you’ll recognize trickster tendencies in characters like Bugs Bunny, Felix the Cat and Bart Simpson.

In each case, the character uses questionably moral tactics and a generous helping of wit to subvert the natural order of things, tip-toeing over boundaries and shaking up power dynamics to turn the world topsy-turvy. They are clowns, jokers and provocateurs, able to outsmart traditional hero archetypes through their ability to camouflage, think on their toes and step outside traditional moral frameworks. 

Outside the realm of myth, in contemporary life, artists often embody the trickster ethos, pushing buttons and testing limits in a world that, quite often, doesn’t quite know what to make of them. This was, at least, painter Kehinde Wiley’s understanding when he embarked upon his most recent painting series “Trickster.”

“Artists are those people who sit at the intersection between the known and unknown, the rational and irrational, coming to terms with some of the confusing histories we as artists deal with,” Wiley said in an interview with HuffPost. “The trickster position can serve quite well especially in times like this.”

The series consists of 11 paintings, all depicting prominent black contemporary artists who, according to Wiley, embody this trickster mode of being. There’s Mickalene Thomas, known for her bedazzled portraits of glamorous black women, as the Coyote, portrayed with feathers in her hair and a hand on her heart. And Nick Cave, whose boisterous “sound suit” sculptures are ecstatic cyclones of matter and sound, assumes the role of famous portrait subject Nadezhda Polovtseva, wearing a beanie and high-top sneakers while beckoning to the viewer with an umbrella. 

Wiley described his subjects as his heroes and peers. “These are people I surround myself with in New York,” he said. “Who come to my studio, who share my ideas. The people I looked up to as a student, as a budding artist many years ago.” He savors that intersectionality, using his brush to peer into art’s past, present and future. 

Since 2001, Brooklyn-based Wiley has painted grandiose, large-scale portraits of black subjects, injecting them into the largely pasty halls of Western portraiture. Riffing off traditional Renaissance imagery canonizing kings, nobles and saints, Wiley gives his contemporary subjects a hybrid sense of regal aplomb and swagger, a nod to the performative gestures that communicate youth, blackness and contemporary, image-saturated life.

Wiley’s painted figures are most often swallowed up by his sumptuous textile backdrops that creep meanderingly into the foreground. The serpentine vines and decorative flourishes usher Wiley’s typical human subjects ― whom he plucks from sidewalks and shopping malls ― out of their previous existences into the realm of paint, timeless and eternal. Over the past 15 years, Wiley’s artistic style has become immediately recognizable, if not iconic. And yet the artist believes his much of his practice remains, to a degree, misinterpreted.

“So much of my work has not been fully investigated,” he said. “Many people see my early work simply as portraits of black and brown people. Really, it’s an investigation of how we see those people and how they have been perceived over time. The performance of black American identity feels very different from actually living in a black body. There’s a dissonance between inside and outside.”

Wiley perceives his current series, too, as an exercise in careful looking. “It’s about analyzing my position as an artist within a broader community,” he said. “About an artist’s relationship to history and time. It’s a portrait of a group of people coming to terms with what it means to be an artist in the 21st century dealing with blackness, with individuality.”

Those familiar with Wiley’s work might do a double take upon seeing this new work, which does away with lavish, cloth-like backdrops in favor of phantasmagorical scenarios. “This show is about me being uncomfortable as an artist,” he said. “When I’m at my best, I’m trying to destabilize myself and figure out new ways of approaching art as a provocation. I think I am at my best, when I push myself into a place where I don’t have all the answers. Where I really rely on instinct.”

While Wiley’s earlier works have drawn comparisons to Barkley L. Hendricks, Jeff Koons and David Salle, this current series calls upon the spirit of Francisco de Goya, specifically, his “Black Paintings,” made toward the end of the artist’s life, between 1819 and 1823. The most famed work in the series, “Saturn Devouring His Son,” depicts Saturn as a crazed old man ― bearded, nude, eyes like black beads ― biting into his child’s body like a cut of meat. 

“I’m interested in blackness as a space of the irrational,” Wiley said. “I love the idea of starting with darkness but ending up with a show that is decidedly about light. There is a very self-conscious concentration on the presence and absence of light ― tying into these notions of good and evil, known and unknown. There is a delicate balance that comes out of such a simple set of metaphors.”

The trickster, like Goya, alternates methodically between these notions of light and darkness. Yet the practice extends beyond the metaphorical and into all too real life when black artists navigate the hegemonic and largely white institutions of the art world. “The trickster is an expert at code switching, at passing and posing,” Wiley said.

“In African-American folklore, the trickster stands in direct relation to secrecy,” he continued. “How do you keep your home and humanity safe from the dominant culture? How do you talk about things and keep them away from the master? These were things talked about in slavery that morphed into the blues, then jazz, then hip-hop. It informs the way young people fashion their identities.”

Just as a young man hanging out at the mall performs black masculinity through his look, walk and speech, artists like Kerry James Marshall, Wangechi Mutu and Yinka Shonibare are cast in the role of “black contemporary artist” ― a role they pilot with dexterity and finesse. “It’s about being able to play inside of it and outside of the race narrative at once,” Wiley said. “It’s difficult to get right.”

Wiley’s paintings are visual folktales littered with clues ― a rifle, a leather-bound book, a slew of dead foxes ― that, like Goya’s 19th-century canvases, reject certain understanding. Instead, they place viewers in an indeterminate space of in-between: between past and present, dark and light, classical and contemporary, reality and myth. 

“I am painting with this romantic idea that portraiture tells some kind of essential truth about the subject,” Wiley said, “but also with this modern suspicion of any representation to tell the truth about an individual. It’s about being in love with a tradition that is inclusive of so many possibilities, but still contains so much absence.”

Indeed, portraiture has historically served aristocrats and elites, leading critics like Vinson Cunningham to question whether such a medium can ever transcend its chronicled prejudice. “How can Renaissance-descended portraiture, developed in order to magnify dynastic princes and the keepers of great fortunes, adequately convey twenty-first-century realities or work as an agent of political liberation?” he wrote earlier this year. 

Yet what Cunningham views as painting’s weakness, Wiley sees as its strength. “Any writer or artist or thinker must have a set of limitations from which to push off from,” he said. “By virtue of its familiarity it can offer surprise.” And it does. With each subsequent series and show, Wiley stretches the understanding of what shape a portrait can take, who the art establishment serves, what the next generation of great American artists has in store. 

“When I have exhibitions, the people who don’t belong to the typical museum demographic show up,” Wiley said. “People view themselves within the rubric of possibility.” The artist himself had a similar experience back in the day, upon seeing Kerry James Marshall’s portraits flourishing, black American life at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. The works left him “thunderstruck.”

Today, Wiley refers to Marshall as “a hero who has, in an improbable way, become a friend.” His smiling face appears three times over Wiley’s “Portrait of Kerry James Marshall, La Lectura.” Seated amidst a dim, rocky cave, Marshall assumes the roles of both student and teacher, directing the viewer’s attention to a large book in his lap, whose insides remain indecipherable. His grin is illuminated with wisdom, kindness and a glint of mischief, leaving the viewer to question what comes next. 

Kehinde Wiley’s “Trickster” runs until June 17 at Sean Kelly Gallery in New York. 

— This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

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Pintô Manhattan Manila Exhibition to Showcase Work From Filipino Artists

JOSIE ALL-IN FOR ART: For 24 hours later this month, Urban Zen will showcase 30 contemporary artists from the Philippines.
The Pintô Manhattan Manila exhibition will benefit the Asian Cultural Council and the Pintô Art Museum. As a 22-year ACC board member, Josie Natori initiated the ACC Philippines 17 years ago, and she will cochair the May 22 downtown event with Susan and David Rockefeller.
The exhibition is being curated by Federico de Vera in conjunction with Pintô’s founder Dr. Joven Cuanang, art historian Patrick Flores and Dr. Luca Parolari. Pintô International’s mission is to present Philippine contemporary art beyond Asia in the same vein as the Pintô Art Museum, both via its online gallery and upcoming exhibitions in Milan, Paris and Tokyo. For the New York installment, Cuanang has drawn from the artists he has been supporting and cultivating for more than 20 years. The artists represented by Pintô cover the wide range of aesthetics unique to the Philippines. Their styles include Surrealism, Expressionism, Minimalism, Social Realism and Conceptual Art.
“The whole intent is to expose and hopefully to sell and attract people to contemporary Philippine art. The art world in the Philippines has really been exploding in the last 10 years.

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An Artist’s Mythic Rebellion for the Venice Biennale

Mark Bradford’s concern: How can he represent the United States when he no longer feels represented by his government?
NYT > Arts

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44 Leaders, Legislators And Artists Sum Up Trump’s First 100 Days

In October 2016, before Donald Trump defeated Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, he outlined a plan of all the things he hoped to accomplish during his first 100 days in office.

But in the wake of failure and unfulfilled promises as his 100th day approaches, the president has changed his tune. Last week, he criticized “the ridiculous standard” of the first 100 days, slamming the deadline in one sentence.

To mark the milestone, HuffPost asked lawmakers, activists, lobbyists and influencers to offer their own (roughly) one-sentence takes on Trump’s first 100 days. 

Here are the responses, which have been lightly edited for clarity and style:

Khizr Khan, Gold Star father

“Every action and word of Trump has [a] foul stench of political expediency and self-aggrandizing, total lack of moral compass and leadership.”

Rep. Ted Lieu (D-Calif.)

“President Trump has spent his first 100 days lying to the American people about issues both great and small, refusing to disclose his tax returns or address fears about his campaign’s ties to Russia, struggling to advance a coherent foreign policy strategy and failing to guarantee affordable health coverage for all Americans … #sad!”

Patrisse Cullors, co-founder of Black Lives Matter 

“45 has proven to be one of the most dangerous human beings on the planet; we must resist his regime and build a movement in the millions.”

Cathy Heller, one of the women who accused Trump of sexual misconduct

“[The first 100 days] are as bad as I thought they’d be. I am a bit relieved that some of his efforts — the travel ban, his health care bill — have been stymied so far, but those fights are not over.” 

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.)

“Evolving.”

Philip Ellender, president of government and public affairs at Koch Industries

“We’re encouraged by the administration’s work to rein in burdensome and unnecessary regulatory overreach that has stifled innovation and has added unnecessary costs to goods and services that Americans rely on every day.”

Michael Mann, climate scientist

“Back in October, I wrote that Donald Trump is a threat to the planet, and what we have seen in his first 100 days of office — denying the threat of climate change, hiring climate deniers and fossil fuel industry lobbyists to fill key administrative roles, and issuing executive orders aimed at dismantling the progress of the past eight years — reaffirms that.” 

Aasif Mandvi, actor

“It’s been 100 days. I can’t believe it’s only been 100 days. I thought he was going to take a year to start showing signs of demagoguery.”

Fr. James Martin, editor-at-large of America magazine and consultant to the Vatican’s Secretariat for Communication

“I hope that the president might consider the needs of those he used to call ‘losers’ ― in this case, those who have lost out at the hands of the economy: the poor, the homeless, the unemployed, the sick and the uninsured.”

Sheryl Crow, singer-songwriter

“There’s been an arc of betrayal, chaos, manipulation and ignorance.”

Richard Cohen, president of the Southern Poverty Law Center

“President Trump has proven in his first 100 days that the economic populism of his campaign was fake, but that the racism and xenophobia were very real. His support for the health care bill showed his indifference to the fate of those trying to make ends meet. At the same time, he’s pressed a far-right agenda targeting immigrants, Muslims, the LGBT community and others who are vulnerable.”

Tom Perriello, Democratic candidate for governor of Virginia

“It is hard to decide whether his supporters, whom I meet with often on the trail, are more disheartened by President Trump’s sheer incompetence, his ties to Russia, or his failure to focus on jobs, but this toxic trifecta means about the most positive review I hear is, ‘Give him a bit more time.’”

April Reign, activist who created #OscarsSoWhite

“Trump’s first 100 days have been harrowing and bear witness that we must challenge him and his administration at every turn by continuing to fight for justice and equity for all marginalized communities.”

Rep. Luis Gutiérrez (D-Ill.)

“About as bad as could be expected from a team of misogynist, climate-change denying, anti-immigration, billionaire civil rights opponents, but we better be ready for even worse to come.”

Ben Cohen, activist and co-founder of Ben & Jerry’s

“It’s clear now that ‘Drain the Swamp’ really meant ‘Suck up all the morally bankrupt billionaires, Wall Street executives, and special-interest pond scum, and then pump them into the White House with a fire hose.’”

Raed Saleh, leader of Syrian rescue group the White Helmets

“After President Obama failed to uphold his ‘red line’ and let [Syrian President Bashar Assad] put Syria into a six-year spiral of horror and destruction, Syrians have found hope in President Trump’s resolve to reassert the international community’s intolerance towards the use of chemical weapons. We now wait to see if he will lead the international effort to help protect Syrians from other brutal regime tactics, and to help build a democratic alternative to the brutality and extremism of both Assad and ISIS.”

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.)

“Promises to working families: either broken or unfulfilled.”

Former Rep. John Tierney (D-Mass.), executive director at the Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation

“To date, President Trump’s nuclear policy can only be described as consistently inconsistent. After 100 days with the nuclear codes, it’s still not clear that the president understands the complexity of the nuclear threats facing the United States or that these threats cannot be mitigated through tweeting.”

Kathy Griffin, comedian

“During the first 100 days, there’s been never a better time to be a standup comic and never a scarier time to be a human on the planet of Earth.”

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.)

“President Trump’s first 100 days have been a disastrous parade of broken promises to working people, handouts to wealthy special interests, and deep damage to the health and economic security of America’s families.”

Rob Delaney, comedian and co-creator of Amazon’s “Catastrophe”

“Seen from space, Trump’s first 100 days has been a muddled but steady effort to lay the groundwork to redistribute the nation’s wealth from the bottom 99 percent to the top 1 percent, with him and his grotesque family astride the foul summit (with a side order of bigotry).”

Raffi Freedman-Gurspan, director of external relations for the National Center for Transgender Equality

“The Trump administration has taken malicious and harmful actions against several minority groups over the last 100 days, including attacking one of the nation’s most vulnerable populations by rescinding Title IX guidance that clarified how to create safe and affirming environments for transgender children.”

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.)

“Bad for children, mothers, workers, immigrants, women’s health, LGBTQ rights and national security, just to name a few.”

Peter Neffenger, former administrator of the Transportation Security Administration

“Although a new administrator has not yet been nominated, I’m glad to see that the transformative changes we began continue to move forward, particularly with respect to partnering with the private sector to develop and deploy new security technologies through the TSA Innovation Task Force, coupled with continued focus and coordination on public area security.”

Chuck Jones, president of United Steelworkers Local 1999

“Donald Trump’s delusional.”

Al Madrigal, comedian and former correspondent on “The Daily Show”

“It’s been a shockingly horrible disaster ― he’s gone back on so many promises that I can’t believe the people in his base that put him in office can continue to support him, considering that he hasn’t done a thing that he’s promised to do. But what do I know? I’m just some idiot comedian.”

Jonathan Gruber, economics professor at MIT

“Trump’s first 100 days showed that democracy still functions as long as there are truth-telling organizations out there like the CBO ― and highlighted the key dependence of our government on those institutions.”

Richard Carmona, U.S. surgeon general from 2002-2006

“A perception of unpredictable entropy, chaos, confusion and alternate facts have so far infected the beltway. America is better than this, let’s show the world who we really are!”

Tamika Mallory, national co-chair of the Women’s March on Washington

“We need to continue to use our voices to push back on the harmful policies and rhetoric of this administration, because the imminent threat that communities are up against is something too great to ignore.”

Andy Slavitt, former acting administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services under President Barack Obama

“Trump’s relationship to the presidency so far seems like my relationship with dieting ― he wants the results without doing the hard work.” 

Melissa Etheridge, singer-songwriter

“It has solidified and brought to the surface even more the importance of diversity and how diversity is challenging and fearful to some. Being on the other side of diversity — being the diverse part of diversity — that means it is my job to take that freedom, to take that responsibility and to respect and love myself and to stand in my truth with it and show that the only way to get out of this mess is by understanding and believing that diversity is what makes us stronger.”

Tom Colicchio, “Top Chef” host and co-founder of FoodPolicyAction.org

“The first hundred days of any presidency comes with a steep learning curve … unfortunately, this instance has been a classic example of ‘You can’t teach an old dog new tricks.’”

Neil Gaiman, author of American Gods

“I think it’s making things more urgent. I don’t know if we’re getting better art, I don’t know if we’re getting more art. But the art we are getting feels more urgent.”

Sarah Kate Ellis, president and CEO of GLAAD

“100 days of Trump translates into 100 days of erasure for the LGBTQ community ― from the census exclusion, to rescinding Obama’s guidance for trans youth in schools, and lack of any LGBTQ mentions on the White House website, he has spent the early days of his administration trying to remove us from the very fabric of this country, and we must resist.”

Sen. Mike Rounds (R-S.D.)

“Major issue: Supreme Court nominee is approved. It’s one of the reasons why he got elected.”

Tom Toro, New Yorker cartoonist

“Despite countless pathetic failures during his first 100 days in office, Trump can point to one great accomplishment: He has inspired a record number of people to become politically engaged artists. The spontaneous creativity of the Resistance, led by ordinary citizens expressing themselves with extraordinary imagination, has grown day by day to become the most powerful cultural force of the century, and it ― not Trump’s vacuous, vain avarice ― will shape the future of our nation.”

Rep. Jared Polis (D-Colo.)

“With regards to marijuana policy, we need the Trump administration to stop sending mixed messages filled with backtracks and flat out flip-flops. We need to take the marijuana sector out of a grey zone and into a legitimate one.”

Kelly Garvy, founder of Protecting Progress in Durham

“Trump lies and embarrasses himself and the country on a daily basis, but for the past 100 days, I have forged new relationships and friendships with wonderful people in my community ― and we are ready for 2018.”

María Teresa Kumar, founding president and CEO of Voto Latino

“From immigration to health care, the president’s agenda is the antithesis of a forward-looking nation, with the potential to take us back to our country’s darkest days.”

Rep. Chris Collins (R-N.Y.)

“Two words: Neil Gorsuch.”

Joycelyn Elders, U.S. surgeon general from 1993 to 1994

“While the POTUS may be a genius, he would greatly benefit by listening to the informed ideas of authorities in health care, education and human rights in order to bring motivation and hope to all.”

Ian Kerner, relationship counselor and sex therapist

“Whereas in the Obama era, ‘sexual cliteracy’ was on the rise and the ‘orgasm gap’ between men and women had been closing, I am now seeing a rise in sexual complaints from women about men who are woefully ill-cliterate. Sadly, the ‘Viva La Vulva’ years are over.” 

Heems, rapper

“It’s been really rough. I can say from a community perspective a lot of South Asians are much more worried about their reality.”

Lewis Black, comedian

“It feels like two and a half years. Two and a half years is what it feels like.”

Multiple HuffPost reporters contributed to this story.

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Ballet Hispánico Is Giving Latino Artists A Voice They Deserve

A small number of residents from Manhattan’s Upper West Side gathered in a community garden on Tuesday to watch as members of Ballet Hispánico posed for a photo shoot. The dancers were dressed in the costumes they’ll wear onstage at the Joyce Theater later this month, where they’ll be performing three works by Latina choreographers, all of whom are women. 

Founded in 1970, Ballet Hispánico defines itself as a community-building institution dedicated to exploring the diversity of Latino culture, involving dancers and choreographers from Venezuela, Cuba, Trinidad, Puerto Rico, Mexico, Spain, Brazil, Argentina and Colombia in a mix of classical, Latin and contemporary dance. This year, its New York Season will not only celebrate the depth of expression found in the various corners of Latin America, it will shine light on the women creating art in a traditionally male-dominated field.

“Ballet Hispánico was born out of the need to give voice to Latino/Latina artists at a time when they did not have a strong presence in mainstream performing arts,” Eduardo Vilaro, the artistic director of Ballet Hispánico since 2009, told The Huffington Post. Today, the company is taking its mission a step further, by choosing to honor the female choreographers who are seizing positions of leadership in dance: Michelle Manzanales, Annabelle Lopez Ochoa and Tania Pérez-Salas.

“It is imperative that we nurture and give voice to those who may not have opportunities within the field,” Vilaro added. “By nurturing and celebrating the work of these Latina artists, Ballet Hispánico hopes to contribute to the process of making the dance field more equitable.”

Vilaro’s sense of duty to marginalized voices is heightened, he says, by the company’s 46-year legacy in New York City. Since the 2015 opening of Ballet Hispánico’s Arnhold Center on 89th Street ― with its unmistakable banners and open windows ― the organization has embarked on a five-year plan to nurture its relationship with the neighborhood it calls home. It’s doing so by hosting free performances, outdoor events and Hispanic heritage celebrations. Judging by the public’s captivation upon seeing dancers like Melissa Fernandez and Lyvan Verdecia leaping in front of a nearby parking garage, local interest is pronounced.

“The photo shoot certainly underlined the magic and richness of culture that Ballet Hispánico brings to the Upper West Side,” Vilaro added. “It is our duty to continue this legacy and build upon it as we navigate the terrain of today’s immigrant and race relations and the new challenges that our communities face.”

Ahead of the company’s April 18 debut at the Joyce, HuffPost’s Damon Dahlen ventured to the Upper West Side to photograph members of Ballet Hispánico in the familiar spaces just beyond its front doors. Check out images of Fernandez, Verdecia and other members of the company paying tribute to their neighborhood in the best way they know how: through dance.

Ballet Hispánico’s 2017 New York Season at the Joyce Theater will take place April 18-23, featuring “Con Brazos Abiertos” by Michelle Manzanales, “Línea Recta” by Annabelle Lopez Ochoa and “Catorce Dieciséis” by Tania Pérez-Salas.

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Creative People Are Saints In Artist’s Beautiful Homage To Culture

On March 16, President Donald Trump released his budget proposal for the fiscal year of 2018, which included plans to eliminate all funding for the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities. The news, though not quite a surprise, was a devastating blow for the countless Americans who cherish the necessity of creative expression and a vibrant cultural community.

New York-based artist Ventiko had already embarked upon her project “Phos Hilaron: From the Masses Rise the Saints” before Trump officially announced his agenda to slash the NEA and NEH. But Trump was certainly on the artist’s mind when she began to photograph beloved members of her creative community and frame them as patron saints. 

“The thing that really inspired me was the election,” Ventiko told The Huffington Post. “This series was the result of wanting and needing to take action. I had to reclaim my power. I’ve been blessed to know so many talented people and this was my chance to actually exalt them.” 

Ventiko enlisted 30 of her friends, collaborators and muses to serve as the subjects of her divine series. “I was brought up Jewish,” she explained, discussing her interest in religious imagery. “When I was younger, there wasn’t a lot of iconography in my moral teachings. I’ve always been drawn to the communication of morality through imagery and have played a lot with the subversion of symbolism.”

For the project, subject and artist collaborated to determine which “patron saint” the model would embody. The unorthodox roster of holy ones includes everything from “Patron Saint of Beauty” to “Patron Saint of Gender Fluidity” and “Patron Saint of Night Night.” The subjects donned full costumes and makeup to wholly personify each holy figure. 

Far from the traditional cast of holy saints, Ventiko’s creative idols are individuals of all ages, genders, races and styles. The fantastical series captures all the different ways people can embrace the holy spirit ― be that spirit of tea time or 5th Avenue. 

Ventiko then attached each image to a votive candle, and arranged the lot of them in Chinatown Soup gallery. Together, the illuminated portraits converge to form a divine altar with one foot in the New York art scene, the other in the sacred beyond. The glittering lights illuminate the ongoing importance of art-making in a time when the future of creative innovation is riddled with uncertainty. 

For the artist, however, the holy homages respond more to Trump’s agenda in general than the proposed elimination of the NEA. “I really wanted to showcase the beauty of difference and individuality,” Ventiko said. “It’s about owning our stories, owning our truths. Not ‘if you come from this place you are a terrorist,’ or separating people out with walls. There is room for all of us us to establish our identities and to be who we are.”

“Phos Hilaron: From the Masses Rise the Saints” runs until April 2, 2017 at Chinatown Soup in New York.

Tina Fey, Alec Baldwin, Mahershala Ali, Amy Poehler and a whole host of other stars are teaming up for Stand for Rights: A Benefit for the ACLU. Join us at 7 p.m. Eastern on Friday, March 31, on Facebook Live

You can support the ACLU right away. Text POWER to 20222 to give $ 10 to the ACLU. The ACLU will call you to explain other actions you can take to help. Visit www.hmgf.org/t for terms. #StandForRights2017

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As Top-Tier Artists Age, the Art World Hopes to Cash In

An auction house and gallery owners face off over who better manages artists’ estates.
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Visa Ban Leaves Artists in Limbo, and Institutions Perplexed

Museums, film festivals, theaters and workshops are scrambling to figure out President Trump’s executive order on immigration and the effects it may have.
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Kids’ Brand Art & Eden Mixes Artists and Charity

It’s never too early to involve kids in art, fashion and charity.
Art & Eden, the children’s line started by a veteran maker of women’s contemporary fashion and private-label clothing, is bringing together creative works by artists and a mission to do philanthropic work. Launched on Jan. 25 at 130 specialty stores and major retailers such as Nordstrom in the U.S. and El Palacio de Hierro in Mexico, the New York-based company is a culmination of two years of research by Susan Correa, who previously ran a women’s line called Cooper & Ella and developed private label collections for retailers ranging from T.J. Maxx to Saks Fifth Avenue.
“It was a huge struggle for me to be able to leave two multimillion dollar industries and get on board with Art & Eden,” she said. But she asked herself: “How can I make the business of fashion better?”
Correa’s first attempt at ethical fashion was a dud. She tried four natural dyes but they turned out lackluster. “One of the lessons I learned is that the product needs to be one that is incredibly appealing to the parent,” she said. She changed tack. “We built it as a collaboration of art from around the world.”
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Many Ways for Artists to Find New Sources of Inspiration

The mythical view of artists has placed them in their studios or garrets, waiting for the Muse to inspire some great new idea or image. Were that the case, the wait could be a long one, leaving artists with little to do between brainstorms. In fact, most artists rely on good work habits to solve technical, aesthetic or intellectual problems. These include maintaining a regimen of drawing or painting for a certain amount of time every day as well as pursuing certain ideas to their completion in the hope that they might lead to other, new and interesting concepts. In the mostly hands-on profession of art, inspiration comes from doing.
In Search of the Muse
No artist is free from dry periods or mental blocks, when the old ideas seem to lead nowhere and new ones are hard to find. There are really two aspects to this problem: The first is the feeling of having run out of ideas, which tends to be a very temporary condition; the second is a general lack of enthusiasm about creating art itself and losing a sense of what makes art exciting, which can be far more troubling. For artists who have established a market for their work, fear of negative criticism or turning off past collectors may also enter their thinking. “When I’m at an impasse,” photographer Sandy Skoglund said, “I try to do whatever feels good. The internal satisfaction has to be the focus.” That may be more easily said than done, as some methods work, others don’t. Jackson Pollock, who was stung by criticism of his later work, largely gave up painting in the last few years of his life. Italian comic opera composer Gioacchino Antonio Rossini’s mental block lasted for the better part of three decades, as he wrote almost nothing of any length or importance for the last half of his life.
Different artists have approached the problem in various ways. Pablo Picasso, for instance, periodically looked for rejuvenation in various media (ceramics, printmaking, sculpture, stage design) and subject matter (copying Old Masters, ancient Greek mythology). Painter Janet Fish “started doing watercolors as a way of loosening up my use of color. I had begun to find that subject matter had come to dominate my painting.” Ben Shahn, who by 1950 felt trapped in the socially conscious work he had done in the 1930s and ’40s, took a teaching position at Black Mountain College in North Carolina, which proved stimulating to him. “Black Mountain was a very argumentative place. A lot of the abstract expressionists were there,” said Shahn’s widow, Bernarda Bryson Shahn. “It helped clarify his ideas, and his work also went in a variety of directions after that. He moved from just continuing on with the same subjects that had come out of the Depression–the poor, hungry and homeless people–to more universal themes.”
The search for a way out of a dry period may also lead to new ideas for artwork as well as energy for the task. Edward Hopper, who is best known for his paintings of urban life, lived most of the year in New York City but he frequently became restless there, unable to paint. His restlessness led him to travel around the country and to Mexico, subsequently yielding a sizable body of paintings devoted to people on trains and highways, at gas stations and hotels.
Some artists delve into art’s past for a source of ideas, although others feel a bit more detached or want to get away from the art of the past altogether. Photographer Mary Frey noted that she gets “solace and sustenence from looking at the work of artists of the past but, after all, I’m a contemporary artist and I need to find the work of contemporary artists. I think that my work has become part of a dialogue with contemporary art, and so it is more important to me to see what similar or not-so-similar things other artists are doing currently.” Noting that a mental block indicates “something that you are trying to avoid,” Janet Fish said that a dry period “can lead you to stop working entirely. As they say, when you fall off a horse, you have to get right back on the horse because, the longer you wait, the harder it becomes to get back on the horse. You just have to keep painting. Going to museums can easily become another way to avoid working. It certainly is that way for me.”
For many artists, the act of creating a work of art is analogous to following a train of thought, developing and reworking ideas that may or may not come together to form a successful piece. A dry period may arise when artists have not pushed their ideas far enough or when a particular problem has already been solved–leaving artists only to repeat themselves. Janet Fish has found that her response to a problem in her work is to open herself to new ideas and experiences, and to keep working. “Sometimes, I work small when I’m not sure about what I’m doing,” she said. “Better a little bad painting than a big bad painting.” Fish noted that it is important to distinguish between a dry period, when problems in one’s work need to be confronted, and just having a bad day, when nothing seems to go quite right. A particularly rough dry period can lead an artist to “do anything to avoid dealing with the painting.” To her mind, the worst thing to do is “indulge in a dry period and let yourself quit working altogether. That way, you lock yourself into a mental block. If you get too polemical, or overly embroiled in a certain narrow idea, you can’t go anywhere.”

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World War I — The Quick. The Dead. The Artists.

“World War I and American Art,” at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, brings into haunting focus painters’ response to “the war to end all wars.”
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Watch Keith Urban’s Incredible Tribute To The Artists We Lost In 2016

The world of music lost some of its greatest voices in 2016. 

In the final moments of the year, country music star Keith Urban payed tribute to some of those legendary entertainers with a medley of songs from Leonard Cohen, Glenn Frey, David Bowie, Merle Haggard and Prince

He was joined on stage by his wife, actress Nicole Kidman, during the event, which was broadcast on CNN.

Check out his emotional tribute above. 

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Their Words to Live By: Artists We Lost in 2016

Remembering outsize cultural figures who died in 2016 through a sampling of their bon mots, song lyrics and more.
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How Outsider Artists Are Advancing the Luxury Watch World

Brands are teaming up with tattoers, graffiti artists, and more.

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Semper (and suffer) Fidel: Artists conflicted about Castro

FILE - In this May 15, 1960 file photo, American novelist Ernest Hemingway, right, stands with Cuba's leader Fidel Castro who holds a trophy after winning the individual championship in the annual Hemingway Fishing Tournament in Havana, Cuba. For many artists, Fidel Castro was a contradiction they never quite resolved, a man equally hard to embrace or to ignore. He was the bold revolutionary who defied the U.S. government and inspired the left worldwide and the long-winded despot who reminded them of the right-wing leaders they had traditionally opposed. (AP Photo/File)NEW YORK (AP) — As a prominent advocate for human rights, the poet Rose Styron knew well the abuses in Fidel Castro's Cuba and the censorship of artists and publications with dissenting views. But when she and her husband, author William Styron, were invited to meet him in 2000 she didn't hesitate to accept.



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Design Experiment From The 1980s Should Inspire Artists Protesting Trump Today

This is an important and calling time for artists,” Polish artist Krzysztof Wodiczko expressed in a statement.

This sentiment has been gaining traction around the nation as artists appalled with the results of the recent presidential election turn to art as a vehicle for communication, catharsis and resistance. However, Wodiczko did not write this statement in 2016. He wrote it in 1988, during the Ronald Reagan administration.

At that time, Wodiczko was using art to address the glaring wealth disparity plaguing New York City, evidenced by the tens of thousands of homeless individuals living in abandoned buildings and on city streets each night. Many of these individuals had been thrown out of mental hospitals and halfway houses because of federal subsidy cuts, Wodiczko says, or pushed out of low-income housing by burgeoning real estate moguls like ― yes ― Donald Trump. 

Trump was only one of a large number of real estate corporations that were basically owning Manhattan.
-Krzysztof Wodiczko

“Donald Trump was, at that time, part of an aggressive real estate development process,” Wodiczko, now a professor in residence at Harvard University who spends much of his time in the U.S., explained to The Huffington Post in a phone interview this week. “Very rapid, uneven development. With the building of new housing and real estate projects for upper-middle-class residents, there was also a process of destruction of the buildings where poor people lived. Trump was only one of a large number of real estate corporations that were basically owning Manhattan. But he was special because of the visibility and upfront decor which was appealing to those who are in love with richness.”

In response to the changing landscape of New York City in the late ‘80s, and the many people this rapid development left behind, Wodiczko created a series of “Homeless Vehicles,” retro-futuristic objects melding art and industrial design, meant to serve the homeless population directly and immediately, while engaging others who might ordinarily look away. 

“My first instinctual response was to try to design something to help people, to ameliorate their conditions as an act of emergency help,” Wodiczko said. “I started to speak with homeless people, collecting and recording what they said. Step by step, I realized this vehicle would offer emergency help, but also have informative and symbolic functions, articulating through design all the needs of homeless people that should not exist in a civilized world.”

The vehicles ― four-wheeled metal carts topped with rounded, silver cylinders, meant to house recyclable items and other emergency supplies used and collected by homeless individuals ― feel like alien spaceships ripped from another dimension. Or high-tech weapons whose images float, untethered to actual science, in our anxious minds. They not only address homelessness but embody it, through their unheimlich ― or literally, “unhomely” ― aesthetic. 

Marked off in black and yellow safety tape, the sci-fi forms are viscerally jarring. In a society that often relegates problems such as homelessness to invisibility, these uncanny devices demand attention. Their resounding strangeness is sprinkled with echoes of familiar visions, too. The vehicle’s shape recalls the shopping carts upon which so many people experiencing homelessness rely. Plastic bottles and cans, which many homeless people collect and sell, can rest inside the carts. 

The “Homeless Vehicles” project, Wodiczko said, is therefore both symbolic and practical. In the 1990s homeless men and women would wheel them through urban city streets, highlighting their realities while serving to distribute free emergency supplies to individuals in need. The vehicles made homelessness impossible to ignore, through a design that made America’s most overlooked population resemble a squad of otherworldly adventurers. 

“It was an exposition and articulation of the unacceptable conditions of their lives,” Wodiczko explained. “People should not need this kind of equipment.The utopian vision of this kind of project was based on the hope that its very function would eventually make it obsolete. I wanted to contribute to the understanding of the unacceptability of the situation, and bring people closer to the homeless.”

Artnet’s Blake Gopnik shared an image of a Homeless Vehicle in front of Trump Tower on Monday, a reminder of just how much has changed ― and how much has not ― since 1988. In fact, Wodiczko’s artist statement is strangely profound in light of Trump’s recent election:

I commend artists moving against populism and the visual culture that promotes and perpetuates some oversimplified thinking that politicians disseminate. Populism plays on the fantasies and nostalgia of dissatisfied people who feel hopeless, proposing a neo-nationalist focus, and resorting to simplistic ‘solution’ concepts in order to mobilize the masses.

When asked his opinion on our nation’s new president-elect, Wodiczko was blunt. “I share the reaction with half of the people in this country,” he said. “It’s not necessary to even explain it. So many people have the same feeling of disappointment and fear. I can immediately see the very dangerous impact of the policies Trump is proposing for immigrants, masses of people who are part of our society and our culture, who have lived here for many years, and who contribute to the economy and culture. Now they fear being deported, their families being broken into pieces.”

Wodiczko sees a strong parallel between homeless and immigrant populations, as both are “agents who spread the visibility of the condition of democracy,” although they too often remain unseen. To counter this cultural epidemic, Wodiczko has made both populations subjects of and participants in his work. His “Immigrant Instruments” use a similarly sci-fi infused visual language to turn conceptual problems into physical interventions. 

One instrument, dubbed an “Alien Staff” in 1992, takes the shape of an adjustable staff with a video screen and speaker at the head, inspired by the look of a biblical shepherd’s rod. The staff operator mans the instrument, confronting strangers and sharing the story of her unique immigration process through a pre-recorded video which plays on the staff’s screen. A technologically mediated conversation ensues, with the staff as the third party uniting difference. Through genuine sharing, both “alien” and “stranger” are in some way rendered alien and strange, bringing people closer together.

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Whether through a “Homeless Vehicle” or an “Immigrant Instrument,” the artist uses his creative interventions to bring unlike populations of people into direct contact, bringing them face to face for a simple, human conversation. “To give an opportunity to those whose voice is not heard, who have no face, who think they don’t make any difference,” the artist said. 

If Wodiczko were to have the same opportunity with the new president-elect, a chance to talk to Donald Trump one on one, face to face, he would issue him a stern warning. “I would tell him to start thinking about the implication of all of the ideas that helped him become the president and all of the contradictions still hidden within them,” he said. “It’s time to reevaluate and rethink his program. Think of people, of everybody, who will be affected. Change all of this, make a program and agenda to be useful for living rather than for dying.”

Although Wodiczko likely won’t be speaking directly to Trump anytime soon, his message is urgent and universal. No longer can voices go unheard, can faces go unseen, can fear and hatred masquerade as populist rhetoric. It’s time to have difficult and honest conversations as human beings, about our wants and our needs, the same today as they were nearly 30 years ago.

It is time for artists to draw attention to those people, those voices, those wants and those needs, by any means necessary. 

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Unblocked: The Music of Eastern Europe by Various Artists

Unblocked: The Music of Eastern Europe by Various Artists


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These Feminist Artists Are Tired Of Being Told To Smile

The night was March 15, 2016. Hillary Clinton had just swept the primaries in Florida, North Carolina and Ohio, thus moving one step closer to becoming the next president of the United States of America; you know, the leader of the most powerful nation in the world.

And yet, despite the epic night in Clinton’s campaign, the main takeaway was: smile. 

Joe Scarborough’s casually misogynist tweet was not shocking or unusual, but just another unsolicited quip expressing what most women already know, that they’re first and foremost recognized as pretty faces — even when they’re about to govern the free world. 

When curator Jenny Mushkin-Goldman caught word of the incident, her first reaction was immediate disbelief. “That that degree of disrespect would be leveled toward, hopefully, our future president — it makes me angry,” she told The Huffington Post. “A man would never be asked to react that way.”

The patronizing nonsense Clinton was forced to endure on the day of her win is something many women face on their daily commutes. “I’ve lived in Manhattan for 15 years,” Mushkin-Goldman said, laughing with exasperation. “Just walking down the street, it’s so commonplace to hear catcalls like that. You’re going about your business, thinking about your day, and suddenly a man you do not know calls out at you to smile.”

The catcall is insidious, in part, because it can be well-intentioned — meant to be playful or complimentary. “They don’t realize how condescending it is,” Mushkin-Goldman said. “I’m not trying to blame individuals; it’s a societal problem. What’s underneath the statement is the idea a woman exists to perform, to entertain — for a man.”

So, as a grand middle finger to Scarborough, Brit Hume, that annoying dude on your walk home, and every man who ever felt the need to comment on a woman’s demeanor or decorum, Mushkin-Goldman organized an art show. It’s called, appropriately enough, “Smile!” The all-woman group show features feminist artists united by their valiant gumption, a refusal to create or perform — or, yes, smile nicely — for anyone other than themselves.

As Mushkin-Goldman put it: “My reaction to all of this is: ‘Yeah, I’ll smile, but, buddy, this is not for you. I smile because I want to smile, because I’m happy with myself.'”

The exhibit will soon take over New York’s Shin Gallery thanks to the enthusiasm of owner Hong Gyu Shin. “He wanted to do an all-female show,” Mushkin-Goldman said, “when I told him this idea he was immediately on board.” 

“Smile!” features six artists who care too much about their work to give a f**k about what you think. One such artist is Rebecca Goyette, who always appears to be having more fun than anyone else. Goyette is known for her feminist brand of absurd pornos, in which traditional tropes and gender roles are eschewed in favor of delicious weirdness, and in this case, lots of lobsters. 

In her short NSFW film “Lobstapus/Lobstapussy,” Goyette takes over an uninhibited Greek island as a hybrid human-lobster sex goddess, where she proceeds to make sweet, strange love to her crew of barnacle boys and girls. “She’s taking the traditional notion of female sexuality and turning it on its head,” Mushkin-Goldman said. “Goyette is putting a woman in charge, following her own desires, having a sexual adventure without shame.”

Goyette brazenly embodies the spirit of sex positivity that runs throughout the show, a frame of mind pioneered over 40 years ago by fellow “Smile!” artist Betty Tompkins. Tompkins is most well known for her “Fuck Paintings,” massive black-and-white reproductions of porn clippings zoomed in on the naughty parts, which she’s been creating since the 1970s.

For “Smile!” Tompkins contributed a series of “Word Paintings,” each image featuring crowdsourced words all too often used to describe women. Beginning in 2002, Tompkins invited women to participate in her project creating “images of women comprised of words.” Some of the final products include “c**t,” “honey,” “c**ksucker,” “slot,” “slut,” “basket case,” “hot tomato” and “amateur Latina p***y.”

Another iconic feminist artist, Deborah Kass, brings text-centric work to the show with her piece “C’Mon Get Happy,” quoting the 1970s “Partridge Family” theme song. The image combines cheery nostalgia with the more serious undertones of promises unfulfilled. “There’s this sense of darkness, a commentary about the failed promises of the 1950s,” Mushkin-Goldman said. “These beliefs that women can have it all, be super powerful business people and also wonder moms, that never came to be.” 

Two artists, Emily Noelle Lambert and Emily Weiskopf, channel a similar force of energy. Mushkin-Goldman describes Lambert’s art as an abstract response to Kass’ image, a sort of “jubilant punch in the sky.” Weiskopf’s “My Mona” is her take on Mona Lisa’s smile, transforming the iconic, coy grin into a geometric landscape of pink, red and fuchsia, the softness of the fleshy hues met with the cool harshness of straight parallel lines. 

One of the darker works in the show is a piece by Hyon Gyon, made specifically for the exhibition. “It is, in a sense, an altar. Basically the pedestal men put women on,” the curator explained. The throne has distinct tiers for first, second and third place, and comes complete with a set of chains, communicating the tension of being simultaneously elevated and restricted, placed on a pedestal with no ostensible mode of escape. 

However even Gyon’s work uses humor as a primarily vehicle for dissent and liberation. “I come from a Jewish background — so humor is essential to survival,” Mushkin-Goldman said. “We remain strong and positive through humor. It is crucial to remaining strong in the face of adversity.”

“Smile!” curated by Jenny Mushkin-Goldman, opens May 4 at Shin Gallery in New York. 

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Conversations With Artists From the Past. Edvard Munch

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The galleries of the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum have recently opened an exhibition by artist Edvard Munch (1863-1944), successfully curated by Paloma Alarcó, that enables us to “listen to the dead with our eyes.” Paintings and writings come together in the museum’s galleries, divided into emotional Archetypes to communicate this artist’s obsessions from throughout his intense life.

People think that you can have a few friends, forgetting that the best, most authentic and above all, most numerous, are the dead. I intend to engage in a series of conversations with the afterlife. As the tormented spirit of the Norwegian artist has circumstantially settled in Madrid, I enthusiastically headed there to learn more.

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Elena Cué: Let’s start with your childhood.

Edvard Munch: I always felt like I was treated unfairly during my childhood. I inherited two of the worst enemies of mankind: tuberculosis and mental illness. Disease, insanity and death were black angels beside my crib. A mother who died early, planting me with the seed of tuberculosis. A hyper-nervous, pietistic father, religious to the point of being crazy, from an ancient lineage, planting me with the seeds of insanity.

When you think about those years, how did you feel?

The angels of fear, pain and death were beside me right from birth, going out to play with me, following me under the spring sun, in the splendor of summer. They were with me at night when I closed my eyes, threatening me with death, hell and eternal punishment. And I often woke at night and looked around the room with panicked eyes thinking “Am I in hell?”

The fear of death tormented me, and this fear harassed me through all of my youth.

Heaven and hell, how do you envisage eternity?

Flowers will emerge from my rotting body, and I will be part of them. That is eternity.

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And where is God?

With fanatic faith in any religion, such as Christianity, came atheism, came fanatic faith in the existence of no God. And with this non-faith in God there was content, becoming a faith itself in the end. It is generally foolish to assert anything about what comes after death.

But what is it that gives strength to the Christian faith. There are many who have difficulty in believing it. Although one cannot believe that God is a man with a big beard, that Christ is the Son of God who became a man, or in the Holy Spirit formed by a dove, there is much truth in this idea. A God as the power that must be at the origin of all, a God that governs everything. We can say that he directs the light waves, the movement of the tides, the center of energy itself. The Son, the part of this energy that is in man, the immense energy that filled Christ. Divine energy, genius energy and the Holy Spirit. The most sublime thoughts sent by the sources of divine energy to the human radio stations. In the very depths of beings. That which is provided to every human being.

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But what do you think death is?

Dying is as if the eyes have been switched off and cannot see anything else. Perhaps it’s like being locked in a basement. You are abandoned by all, they closed the door and left. You see nothing and only notice the humid smell of putrefaction.

And what about life?

I have been given a unique role to play on this earth that has given me a life of illness and also my profession as an artist. It is a life that does not contain anything resembling happiness, or even the desire for happiness.

Not even love?

Human destinies are like planets. Like a star that appears in the dark and meets another star, glistening in a moment, to then return, fading into obscurity. So as well, a man and a woman meet, they slide towards each other, shining in love, blazing, and then disappear, each one for himself. Only a few end up in a great blaze in which both can fully join.

The ancient were right when they said that love was a flame, as the flame leaves behind only a pile of ashes. Love can turn to hate, compassion to cruelty.

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Jealously is closely linked with love, how would you describe it?

Jealous people have a mysterious look, many reflections focus in those two sharp eyes, like in a crystal. The look is exploratory, interested, full of love and hate, an essence of what we all have in common.

Jealousy says to its rival: go away, defective; you’re going to heat up in the fire that I have lit; you’ll breathe my breath in your mouth; you’ll soak up my blood and you will be my servant because my spirit will govern you through this woman who has become your heart.

Now let’s talk about art… where does it come from?

Art generally comes from the need of one human being to communicate with another. I do not believe that art has not been inflicted by the need for a person to open his heart. All art, literature as well as music, has to be generated with the deepest feelings. The deepest feelings are art.

What is the purpose of your art?

I have tried to explain life and the meaning of life through my art. I have also tried to help others clarify life. Art is the heart of blood.

We must no longer paint people reading or women knitting. In the future we must paint people who breathe, feel, suffer or love. As Leonardo da Vinci dissected corpses and studied the internal organs of the human body, I try to dissect the soul.

Conclusion.

My art is based on one single thought: why am I not like the others?

How do you think the audience should approach art?

The audience must become aware that the painting is sacred, so that it unfolds before them like in church.

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One of your iconic paintings is The Scream, could you explain the origin of such a radical emotional expression?

I was walking along the road with two friends, the sun was setting. Suddenly the sky turned a bloody red. I stood, leaned on the fence feeling deathly tired. Over the blue-black fjord and city hung blood and tongues of fire. My friends walked on and I remained behind, shivering with anxiety. And I felt the immense infinite Scream in Nature.

Your love of photography is known, what do you think of photography as another mode of artistic expression?

The camera cannot compete with the brush and palette as long as it cannot be used in heaven and hell.

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Where is the beauty in your art?

The emphasis on harmony and beauty in art is a waiver to be honest. It would be false to only look on the bright side of life.

Your writing has a strong aphoristic style. We’ll finish there…

Thought kills emotion and reinforces sensitivity. Wine kills sensitivity and reinforces emotion.

Spanish version: Conversaciones con artistas del pasado. Edvard Munch

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Artists Need to Make Peace With the Academic Life

It is said that when the Italian Renaissance artist Verrocchio saw the work of his student, Leonardo da Vinci, he decided to quit painting since he knew that his work had certainly been surpassed. The story is probably apocryphal — it is also told of Ghirlandaio when he first saw the work of Michelangelo, of the father of Pablo Picasso and of a few other pairings of artists — but the idea of a teacher selflessly stepping aside for the superior work of a pupil makes one’s jaw drop.

More likely, many artists who teach today would tend to agree with Henri Matisse who complained during his teaching years (1907-09), “When I had 60 students there were one or two that one could push and hold out hope for. From Monday to Saturday I would set about trying to change these lambs into lions. The following Monday one had to begin all over again, which meant I had to put a lot of energy into it. So I asked myself: Should I be a teacher or a painter? And I closed the studio.”

Many, if not most, of the world’s greatest artists have also been teachers. However, between the years that Verrocchio and Matisse were both working and teaching, the concept of what a teaching artist is and does changed radically. Verrocchio was a highly touted fifteenth century painter and sculptor, backed up with commissions, who needed “pupils” to be trained in order to help him complete his work. Lorenzo di Credi, Perugino and Leonardo all worked directly on his paintings as the final lessons of their education. It would never have occurred to Matisse to let his students touch his canvases. In the more modern style, Matisse taught basic figure drawing rather than how to work in the same style as himself.

Teaching now obliges an artist to instruct others in techniques and styles that, at times, may be wholly opposed to his or her own work. Even when the teaching and creating are related in method and style, instruction requires that activity be labeled with words, whereas the artist tries to work outside of fixed descriptions — that’s the difference between teaching, which is an externalized activity, and creating, which is inherently private and personal.

“The experience of teaching can be very detrimental to some artists,” said Leonard Baskin, the sculptor and graphic artist who taught at Smith College in Massachusetts between 1953 and 1974. “The overwhelming phenomenon is that these people quit being artists and only teach, but that’s the overwhelming phenomenon anyway. Most artists quit sooner or later for something else. You have to make peace with being an artist in a larger society.”

Artists make peace with teaching in a variety of ways. Baskin noted that teaching had no real negative effect on his art — it “didn’t impinge on my work. It didn’t affect it or relate to it. It merely existed coincidentally” — and did provide a few positive benefits. “You have to rearticulate what you’ve long taken for granted,” he said, “and you stay young being around people who are always questioning things.”

A number of artists note that teaching helps clarify their own ideas simply by forcing them to put feelings into words. Some who began to feel a sense of teaching burn-out have chosen to leave the academy altogether in order to pursue their own work while others bunch up their classes on two full days so as to free up the remainder of the week. Still others have developed strategies for not letting their classroom work take over their lives.

Painter Alex Katz, for instance, who taught at Yale in the early 1960s and at New York University in the mid-1980s, noted that he tried not to think about his teaching when he was out of the class – “out of sight, out of mind,” he said.

Others found their teaching had so little to do with the kind of work they did that forgetting the classroom was easy. Painter Philip Pearlstein, who has taught at both Pratt Institute and Brooklyn College, stated that his secret was to keep a distance from his students.

“I never wanted to be someone’s guru,” he said. “I never wanted to have any psychological or spiritual involvement with my students, getting all tangled up in a student’s personality or helping anyone launch a career. I call that using teaching as therapy and, when you get into that, you’re in trouble.”

However, Pearlstein claimed that “having a job has led to an intensification of my work. I had to use the little time I had to paint, and it made me work all that much harder. Something had to give, so I cut down on my social life. I decided it was more important to stay home and paint.”

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Sargent: Portraits of Artists and Friends

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“Sargent: Portraits of Artists and Friends,” currently showing at the Met, is a virtual vade mecum of l9th European culture, as seen from the perspective of the great and often quirky transatlantic portraitist. There is Ellen Terry as Lady Macbeth (1889) and a sketch of Yeats (1908). The impressionist style of “Claude Monet Painting by the Edge of a Wood”(1885) shows Sargent’s mirror neurons at work. Henry James, whose novels provided a similar, albeit fictionalized portrait of European cultural life, is pictured with his thumb in his coat. Edmund Booth (1890) is the subject of a characteristically “dramatic” portrait. Rodin, who he painted, called him “the Vandyke of our times.” The curators point to the fact that his portrait of Madame X (the expatriate Madame Pierre Gautreau), shown bare shouldered in a sensual black gown with silver straps, was deemed scandalous and resulted in Sargent’s departure for England. “Dr. Pozzi at Home” (1881) evinces a similar swagger in its use of an ecclesiastical red to capture the estheticism of a renowned gynecologist. But it’s the poses that really distinguish these portraits. The current exhibit underscores the connection to Frans Hals’ “The Banquet of the Officers of the St. George Civic Guard,” (1616) in Sargent’s painting of the artists Francois Flameng and Paul Helleu, with Flameng staring straight out and Helleu in profile. Sargent takes a similar tact in the painting of the children of the playwright Edouard Pailleron with Marie-Louise facing out with a look of self-possession that verges on possession and her brother Edouard staring away in distraction. In a “A Dinner Table at Night” (1884) his subject Edith Vickers commands our attention while her husband Alfred’s profile is cut short, drifting into oblivion at the edge of the frame. James and Sargent may have admired each other greatly, but looking at the current exhibit one begins to ask who was the novelist and who the painter? They both had similar themes but James painted with words and Sargent wrote novels in oil.

Madame X by John Singer Sargent

{This was originally posted to The Screaming Pope, Francis Levy’s blog of rants and reactions to contemporary politics, art and culture}

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The Unseen Work of Preparing an Exhibit: An Artist’s Perspective

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Fibonacci’s Workshop, watercolor 32″ x 40″

Two exhibits of my work, Oil and Water and Re/Viewing the American Landscape are currently on view at Blue Water Fine Arts in Port Clyde, Maine. I’ve been spending summers painting in Maine for close to forty years and exhibiting there for over thirty. Last summer Down East Magazine selected me, along with artists Alex Katz and William Wegman as cover artists for their 60th Anniversary issue. I continue to be amazed at the work which goes into putting together an exhibit.

As many of the works are watercolors, much thought goes into how to mat the artwork and how best it should be framed — what type/color of frame, type of mat (I am very fortunate to have an excellent craftsperson who makes my mats, and am in close proximity to a Frame Shop, owned by a delightful and knowledgeable Englishman whose family has a frame shop in England). I personally like to place the mat on the painting and secure it because, for me, even the smallest centimeter changes the entire intended design of the painting. One might think a gold frame is a gold frame but there are different types of gold frames — red gold, yellow gold, antique, water gilded- and one gold might not support the painting as well as another. When I hang an exhibit such as my current Reviewing the American Landscape I think of the exhibit as a whole and the framing more as a backdrop so as not to distract from the art.

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Sanctum, watercolor 32″ x 40″

I learned from working with National Gallery of Art Curator Sarah Cash who curated my Paris Exhibit Barbara Ernst Prey: An American View at the Mona Bismarck Foundation in Paris the importance of a good installation and thoughtful dialogue of the artwork. Before the exhibit goes up I work with the curator and think about which paintings compliment each other. In this current exhibit the gallery is the former Village Inn once owned by Architectural Digest Editor Paige Rense and artist Kenneth Noland. It’s charm is in the connection to the authenticity of the area and a reflection of what I have been documenting for many years.
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An American View: Barbara Ernst Prey on exhibit at the Mona Bismarck Foundation, Paris

As I am a native New Yorker (my mother was the Head of the Design Department at Pratt Art Institute and a great artist herself) people often ask me who comes to this exhibit. People come from all over the country to see the exhibit and it has become a sort of destination. Just this year the Chairman of the Board of a major museum flew in private for two hours, purchased some of the new paintings and then left. Another well known collector came up on their yacht and spent the night in the harbor. Some well known American Curators as well as Directors and collectors have walked though the exhibit.

My paintings are in the collections of The White House, the Brooklyn Museum and the Smithsonian American Art Museum but also the Farnsworth Museum, which has an early painting of mine, here in Maine. My paintings from Maine are in collections worldwide, one currently on view at the U.S. Embassy Residence in Hong Kong. In between exhibition installation, I was able to accompany the Chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts (I was appointed by the President of the United States to the National Council on the Arts, the advisory Board to The National Endowment for the Arts) on a part of her visit to Maine and then returned to finish the installation.

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Quadricentennial Nocturne, watercolor 32″ x 40″

Something new for this year is an exhibit of a series of never before seen oil paintings. I’ve been secretly painting the area in oils and for the first time have exhibited them. I haven’t painted in oils since I was 17 and Governor Hugh Carey of New York purchased my first oil painting so it is a return with a more intimate series. This, of course, poses a whole new conundrum of how to hang an exhibit.

Hope you’ll stop in if you’re in Maine at Blue Water Fine Arts in Port Clyde, Maine.
www.bluewaterfinearts.com www.barbaraprey.com
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Blue Water Fine Arts Gallery

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Art Consultants Help Advance Artists’ Careers

Some artists are great at promoting themselves, finding buyers and generating attention to their careers. Hats off to them. For many other artists, however, having a middleman speak on behalf of their work is vital to their careers.

That middleman can be an agent or dealer (or gallery). That person might also be an art consultant. At times, art consultants are gallery owners and even museum curators who advise individuals and companies in the area of decorating or building a collection on the side. Those who are free agents, only serving the interests of their clients, generally don’t have galleries and or represent particular artworks or artists; rather, they tend to work from their offices or homes, maintaining information (bios, slides, press clippings) on a variety of different artists whose work may be of interest to particular clients. Most focus exclusively on contemporary art — works created by living artists — while others will hunt through all styles and periods, depending upon the interests and budgets of their clients. “Our criteria for selection revolves around our clients’ tastes,” said Josetta Sbeglia, an art consultant in St. Louis, Missouri. “We hope we like it, too.”
These clients are a mix of private collectors, corporations, law firms and health care facilities. “The healthcare industry is growing, and hospitals see the value of art and creating spaces that are more pleasant,” said Talley Fischer, a sculptor in Bellefonte, Pennsylvania, who has been commissioned to create large installations for a variety of health care facilities through art consultants hired by these institutions, who usually are brought in to help these institutions find artworks when in the process of building new or renovating existing spaces. Fischer noted that she promotes herself directly to art consultants.

Many companies prefer using outside consultants — finding expertise through people who are members of the Association of Professional Art Advisors (www.artadvisors.org), for instance, although quite a few advisors who are not APAA members or work as gallery owners also offer their assistance to private and corporate clients – to hiring their own in-house curators as a cost-savings move. These companies look to acquire artwork, because “art in offices enriches the lives of the people who work there,” said Laura Solomon, an art advisor in New York City, who not only helps her clients purchase artwork, but will take charge of framing or installing pieces in the offices, rotating existing artworks around the offices from the collection and even putting together special exhibitions from it.

Consultants learn of artists in a variety of ways: They attend exhibitions at galleries, as well as at art fairs and juried competitions; they receive recommendations from other artists; they go to open studio events; and they are contacted directly by the artists, through the postal service, telephone or e-mail. Some consultants encourage artists sending them material, while others do not — it makes sense to inquire by telephone or letter what, if anything, a particular consultant is interested in seeing before mailing a portfolio. Lorinda Ash, a New York City art dealer and consultant, said that “I get phone calls, FAXes and emails from artists all the time, but that’s not how I ever become interested in an artist. I find artists through going to galleries.”

On the other hand, Jennifer Wood-Patrick, an art consultant at the firm of Art Advisory Boston in Massachusetts, welcomes receiving material from artists but noted that “we have a limited amount of time for telephone conversations and sorting through packages sent by artists.” She prefers emails from artists that describe who they are and include images.

“Tom is very busy, so I try not to bother him with things he won’t be interested in.” The Tom in question is Tom James, executive chairman of Raymond James Financial, an investment and wealth management company, and he and his wife Mary select all of the artwork – 2,400 pieces and growing – that adorn the one million square feet of office space at its St. Petersburg, Florida headquarters. The person trying not to bother him too much is Emily Kapes, curator of the art collection, who identifies the type of artwork (80 percent two-dimensional and the rest sculptural works in bronze, glass and stone) that often represent images of the American West and wildlife. She receives telephone calls, postal mail and email from artists and galleries around the country, all offering their artwork for purchase. “I can filter out the artists that usually wouldn’t be collected,” she said, “and, otherwise, pass things along to Tom. Tom is known for supporting living artists.”

Emily Nixon, a Chicago-based art advisor, too, receives numerous communications from artists, but she tends to rely less on submissions from people she has never heard of (“I find that artists may not know what corporations want, and many are unfamiliar with contracts and pricing,” she said) and more through visiting art gallery exhibitions, art fairs, auctions and receiving recommendations from people (artists, dealers, auctioneers) with whom she has had a long-time association. The artists who are of greatest interest to her “should be in a gallery and have had numerous sales.” It doesn’t hurt if these artists have sold work in the past to other corporations, although that is less significant than the fact that they are represented in a gallery.

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New Artists Review: no:carrier

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The West Coast of the United States has always emanated a romantic vision of rainbow sherbet sunsets, velvety golden hills, healthy living, and progressive thinking. The psychedelic Renaissance of the 1960s played a large role in this imagery as Ken Kesey and his Merry Pranksters roamed around the country, sharing their California sensibilities (and LSD) with those who were willing to be “turned on.” Though California is undoubtedly one of the most geologically diverse and beautiful places to live, like everything bright, it also has a dark side.

Hailing from Germany but transplanted to San Francisco, songwriter and producer Chris Wirsig of the electro-noir-pop duo no:carrier, depicts a more obscure vision of California. The other half of the duo, Cynthia Wechselberger who is the singer, still remains in Germany which does not impede on their musical partnership. Released in May of this year, their four track EP Ghosts Of The West Coast, is a haunting collection of cover songs that they describe as “the American dream gone wrong.”

The album begins with a rendition of Don Henley’s “The Boys Of Summer” which tells the story of a lurking ex-boyfriend who is woefully looking for his lost love at the end of summer. Next comes Belinda Carlisle’s tragic track, “California,” which warns the listener of the perils of fame and show business, referencing the late River Phoenix as a victim of this peril. Following “California” is Tony Carey’s “Room With a View,” an unfolding tale of broken dreams and misfortune which eventually lead to homelessness and anguish. The final track, “She Moved Through The Fair,” is a traditional Irish song about lost love and a strange choice to put on an EP titled Ghosts Of The West Coast as it breaks the thematic cohesiveness of the album.

Each track is sung by a different singer which creates a unique feel to each song. The only track performed by Wechselberger is “She Moved Through The Fair”; Melissa Harding sings “California,” Kalib Duarte sings “The Boys of Summer,” and Lauralee Brown sings “Room With a View.” Though the entire EP is cover songs, the haunting and somber vibe of Ghosts Of The West Coast possesses an inimitable sound that reinvents old tunes.

“We can’t be compared easily. We have our very own sound that includes elements from several styles – from dark wave to synthpop, from acoustic to electro,” says Wirsig. “We’re not going on the trodden paths, we stay true to our ideals and write and record exactly the songs we want.” Founded in 1995 in Germany, no:carrier was unafraid of sound experimentation and emotive tracks.

After releasing their critically acclaimed third album Wisdom & Failure in 2014, no:carrier has been experiencing a momentous pinnacle in their career in 2015. Later this year, the duo plans to release a remix collection of new original material that promises the same melancholic and bittersweet tones that they have spent the last few years building and establishing.

Soundcloud: www.soundcloud.com/nocarriermusic
Website: www.nocarriermusic.com
Facebook: www.facebook.com/NoCarrierMusic

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Folk Rock Albums by American Artists (Music Guide): Arrogance Albums, Blackmore’s Night Albums, Bob Dylan Albums, Broadside Electric Albums

Folk Rock Albums by American Artists (Music Guide): Arrogance Albums, Blackmore’s Night Albums, Bob Dylan Albums, Broadside Electric Albums


New – Please note that the content of this book primarily consists of articles available from Wikipedia or other free sources online. Commentary (music and lyrics not included). Pages: 295. Chapters: Arrogance albums, Blackmore’s Night albums, Bob Dylan albums, Broadside Electric albums, Buffalo Springfield albums, Carole King albums, Crosby & Nash albums, Daniel Johnston albums, Don McLean albums, Edie Brickell albums, Fred Neil albums, Gene Clark albums, Grateful Dead albums, Harry Chapin albu

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Besides the Sales Pitch, Artists Should Offer Care Instructions

The conversation that artists are most likely to enjoy having with buyers concerns what inspired them to create this or that and the ideas they seek to express in their work. Less enjoyable are negotiations over price (how much it costs, if any discounts are available, how they will be paid), and less enjoyable still is a discussion of the type of care that their artwork may require over time. Too often, artists shy away from questions of care, because they themselves may not know much about the materials they are using and how their pieces weather over time (and what, if anything, to do about it) and because they worry that such talk might cause prospective buyers to back out of a purchase.

Phoebe Dent Weil, a retired sculpture conservator at the St. Louis Art Museum who continues to work for private and institutional clients, claims that artists need to look beyond the initial sale to the long-term maintenance of their work. And, they need to talk to buyers about how to keep artworks looking good. “Collectors may get very upset if the sculpture they buy starts to look very different and starts to lose its value,” she said.

Weil herself was called in by the Houston Museum of Fine Arts when a polished carbon steel sculpture in its collection by the Italian artist Pietro Consagra rusted all over. Should the museum sand off the rust and polish the piece, knowing that the rust would recur? She spoke with the artist, who was still alive, recommending that the work be painted, which might make the piece look a bit different but would provide lasting protection. The artist was happy with the recommendation and began incorporating paint into his other steel works. He also was lucky that the conservator the museum chose to contact had an idea about how to keep his work from looking good. That helps the artist’s reputation and keeps the museum interested in his work.

Light, heat, humidity, dirt, dust and especially water are all potentially harmful to works of art, and the damage is dependent upon the materials used and where the objects are located. Artworks placed outdoors are most likely to experience changes through cold, heat, moisture and pollutants, and some materials are better able to weather these changes or be treated than others. Stone sculpture, for instance, is porous and can absorb water vapor up to four inches deep, taking airborne pollutants into its interior. Eventually, when it dries out, the stone will “sweat” out these particles, which creates an erosion on its surface, slowly eliminating some of the detailing.

Bronze, too, reacts badly to humidity, turning green. Weil stated that chlorides in the patina — the surface sheen of an object — occasionally reacts with high humidity to cause “bronze disease,” which is green mold-like spots that start appearing on the surface. She noted that there is not much one can do to permanently stop this condition, although regular cleaning and waxing of the work does provide some protection from the humidity. Wood is most severely affected by moisture in the air, expanding in high humidity and contracting in a dry environment. Two adjoining wooden pieces in an object may expand against each other and knock themselves out of line, and the glue holding pieces together may dry up and cease to bind the parts together. The ideal relative humidity levels are 55 percent for wood, 50 percent for stone and 40 percent for bronze.

Unlike paintings and drawings, wooden sculpture cannot be placed under glass to protect them from strong light. She noted that these pieces should be kept away from windows where direct sunlight would hit them, since their veneer absorbs heat which can lead to cracking.

Certain types of antiques or sculpture are born trouble, no matter what anyone does, Weil claimed. Claes Oldenburg’s outdoor pieces, for instance, are cast in Everdur bronze that has the distinction of tarnishing and discoloring very rapidly. If one touches a piece made in Everdur bronze, the mark must be immediately cleaned off or else the fingerprints may be permanently etched into the metal within a matter of days.

Other problems may have been found with Cor-ten steel, which has been used for works by Alexander Calder, Louise Nevelson, Pablo Picasso and many other artists. Cor-ten was thought to be an answer to outdoor environmental conditions as it formed a tight oxidation layer that stabilizes and acts as a buffer against further corrosion. Weil stated that there have been serious problems when conservators seek to clean graffiti off works made of this metal. “To clean it, you have to remove the entire rust layer. Then, another rust layer has to develop.” The result is the removal of actual metal, which may change the proportions and appearance of the entire work.

Artists, of course, choose the materials they use often for other reasons than longevity. Picasso would not have pasted newsprint onto some of his late Cubist canvases had his concerns been the problems conservators would face decades later. As a result, artists should provide guidance to their buyers in the maintenance of their work. Here are some Don’ts that Weil has to offer:

Don’t use Pledge on a wood sculpture. It may leave residue, cause discoloration and provide moisture that enters the wood.

Don’t use Brasso metal polish on metal sculptures. It has a mild abrasive and leaves a residue of white powder that collects in corners.

Don’t use a rag to remove dirt and dust. The rag may catch on sharp points and abrade the surface. Feather dusters are better but are more difficult to control. Instead, use a soft bristle paint brush, taping the metal ferule to guard against scrapes.

Don’t put a waterproof coating on stone sculpture. Rainwater will get underneath the coating through cracks and cause the coating to chip off, distorting the overall look of the piece.

And, of course, what one might expect from a conservator: If a buyer has questions about how to protect a work from damage or restore a piece after damage has occurred, contact a qualified conservator.

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Various Artists – Bikini Machines – Oldies Rockabilly Jams For A Hot Summer Part

Various Artists – Bikini Machines – Oldies Rockabilly Jams For A Hot Summer Part


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A Caring Bridge Site for Artists?

So I’m at my friend Tom’s birthday party, hoping to steer the conversation toward what I’m going to be doing for the next few weeks. I’ll be performing Macaroni on a Hotdog, the one woman show I’ve written, at the 2015 Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Maureen takes the bait and asks me what I’m doing the rest of the summer, and I explain.

Me: And also… I’ll be blogging about the whole adventure on the Huffington Post.
Maureen: Is that like a Caring Bridge thing, but for artists?

Luckily there was a festive birthday napkin available to wipe off the Pinot Grigio I snorted through my nose from laughing. I thought about Maureen’s analogy. Although there are similarities, this endeavor is less about a death, and more about a birth. The birth of a new play.

Part of the job of being an actor, is being asked (frequently asked) “What are you doing now?”
If you’re not working, people might think that you’re either lazy, or unemployable. For seven months now, I’ve joyously had an answer to the question “What are you doing now?”

This is not my first time to the Edinburgh Fringe. My husband and I brought the brilliantly constructed Billy VanZandt play The Property Known as Garland to the 2012 Edinburgh Fringe. This time around I’ll be performing a play I’ve written myself. If things go well, I’ll be taking a lot of the credit, if things go. . . you know what? Let’s change the subject.

This time around, we’ve arrived a few days before the Fringe kicks in to high gear. The venue we’re performing has just begun to be transformed. It’s usually a lecture hall for the Surgeon’s College, but during the Fringe, it becomes Theatre 3 of theSpace@SurgeonsHall.

It’s nice to see the calm before the storm.

For anyone considering bringing a show to the Fringe, you should try and be realistic. There are 3,000 shows here this month. In addition to the Fringe, there’s also a book festival, a jazz festival, International Festival and don’t even get me started on the tattoo at the Castle. Besides the plethora of festivals, Edinburgh has museums, parks and fantastic pubs. Competition for an audience is fierce. Some of the venues will require you to fill a certain amount of seats for each performance. If you don’t fill those seats, you have to pay for them yourself. This is a bad deal and do not even think of signing that contract.

I kind of feel like, if you bring a show to the Fringe, it’s like the Universe’s way of hazing you, and whatever the outcome, just by surviving the month, you are in the club.

Last night we sat in the Auld Hoose Pub, had a pint of Hobgoblin and I wrote my first post. Which disappeared because I clicked the wrong button. Tragedy? Hardly. Frustrating? Definitely. The Auld Hoose hadn’t changed much since 2012. Comfortable seats, excellent taps. I did notice their cigarette machine has left, and some posters advertising current exhibitions are on display. I would love to see the M.C. Escher and the Roy Lichtenstein at the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art and also there’s a Lee Miller and Picasso at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery. I’m pretty much a kid in a candy store. Edinburgh is going to explode with culture, fun and mayhem and I have a front row seat.

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12 Pieces Of Advice For Artists More Practical Than ‘Follow Your Heart’

 ”Follow your heart.” “Trust your gut.” “Find your voice.” “Stay true to your vision.”

It’s not that there isn’t merit to these oft-touted nuggets of wisdom for aspiring artists, it’s just that, sometimes, following your heart won’t help you pay rent on time. 

If you’re looking for the kind of advice that, while it may not look as great on an inspirational postcard, will help you actually sustain yourself as a working artist, we highly suggest Alix Sloan‘s Launching Your Art Career: A Practical Guide for Artists.

Sloan, a curator and consultant, enlists the help of 40 artists and dealers to compile a bullshit-free guide to making art, making connections, making sales and making money. We’ve compiled some of our favorite parts below, to give you a taste. 

Behold, 12 pieces of actually practical advice for a struggling, emerging or really any sort of artist.

1. Take the job. “Don’t be one of those cliché art school kids who considers himself above the idea of art as commodity. Take the commercial work. Take the design work. Do the band’s poster for $ 20 and a six-pack. Do whatever it takes to be able to call yourself a working artist. It’s a noble title, regardless of the particulars.” Noah Antieau, art dealer

2. Make nice! “Your best connections are your peers. Stay in contact with them. Be curious. Visit other artist’s studios and add like-minded people to your mailing list.” -Cara Enteles, artist

3. Do you. “Aim to have people recognize your work in a crowded room … to know immediately that it’s undeniably yours.” -Lori Field, artist 

 4. Get some perspective. “Gaining perspective by observing your practice amongst a field of others, and the culture and time in which it is done, is a career goal that follows a wide arc … It is not the sole responsibility of your art dealer, for example, to place your work in cultural context, nor should you allow this without your input.” -Martin Kruck, artist 

5. It’s just another job. “When I’m talking with younger artists I stress that making, exhibiting and selling art in a commercial gallery is just like any other job one hopes to be successful at. It means working hard, honoring deadlines and trusting your co-workers to do their jobs well too.” -William Baczek, art dealer

6. Don’t go crazy with the zeros. “Don’t raise your prices too fast because once they are up, you should not lower them.” -Jayme McLellan, art dealer 

7. More, more, more! “Feed your output with as much input (books, lectures, films, leisure, rest) as you can handle, and in some cases, more than you can manage.” -Didier William, artist 

8. Keep your friends close and your inspiration closer. “Now there are endless images at your fingertips, but you need to find the ones that awaken your creativity and keep them near to you. Sometimes it can be something blurry and vague … I have this one little scrap of paper with a very low-res image of a kitten’s face on it, and something about it makes me come back to it again and again, trying to capture something elusive about it. When you find an image like that, hold onto it like it was gold.” -Marion Peck, artist 

9. Get that domain name stat. “You don’t need business cards. You do need a website.” -Zach Feuer, art dealer

10. Don’t get comfortable. “You may have to work at a real job while you are making this happen. DO NOT get a creative job. Get a job you won’t get comfortable in. Save all your creative juices for your own art practice!” -Martha Rich, artist  

11. Embrace the tribe. “It’s good to remember (not when you are making new work as it might be better to forget) that there are armies of manically mono-focused people (I almost said monsters) out there who want something close to what you want. They are your tribe, not your enemy.” -David Humphrey, artist 

12. Go outside. “Stay deeply connected to what’s going on in your own art world. Under no circumstances isolate yourself in the studio with a solitary practice, thinking you’re some kind of lone wolf or Van Gogh.” -Mark Wolfe, art dealer

Also on HuffPost:

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This Makeup Artist’s Monster Transformations Are The Scariest Things You’ll See Today

Special effects and makeup artist Emily Anderson’s Instagram page is one you won’t be able to unsee. But we’re not sure whether that’s a good or bad thing.

The 23-year-old’s account is filled with hauntingly awesome makeup transformations turning Anderson into monsters, gremlins and villains. Armed with lots of water-based paints, highly-pigmented shadow palettes and patience, she’s morphed her upper body into three-dimensional versions of Doomsday, Medusa and Gizmo.

emily anderson makeup

Anderson honed her makeup artistry skills at the Cinema Makeup School in Los Angeles and on the sets of film, TV shows and music videos, including “Lizzie Borden’s Revenge,” “American Horror Story” and David Guetta and Nicki Minaj’s “Hey Mama.”

She began dabbling with monster transformations back in 2014, and picked it up again in March. “I was inspired originally by body paint that pro wrestler Finn Balor had worn actually,” she told The Huffington Post. “I ended up having the chance to do his body paint for a match in San Jose for Wrestle Mania Weekend.”

To help seamlessly blend the makeup out into the crevices and folds of her skin, Anderson uses a total of four makeup brushes and sometimes the BeautyBlender. For more heavy duty long-wear makeup looks, she reaches for airbrush paints.

All of Anderson’s monster transformations seem incredibly complex to achieve. “The raptor was pretty complicated because of the angles involved, but some of the Disney scenes or Gizmo took more detail,” she said. “I try to challenge myself each time so they are all a little difficult or complicated for me to work out in some way!”

emily anderson makeup

When it’s time to take it all off, she swears by soap and water for the water-based paints, 99-percent alcohol to remove the airbrush and alcohol colors, and Neutrogena makeup remover wipes for anything that’s left over.

See some of Emily Anderson’s most gruesome transformations below and head over to her Instagram page for more looks.

H/T Bustle


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Style – The Huffington Post
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Anonymous Artists Smuggle Mysterious Treehouse Into An LA Park, Hearts Explode Accordingly

If you head to Los Angeles’ Griffith Park, start on the Charlie Turner Trailhead for the Mt. Hollywood Hiking Trail, across the parking lot from the entrance to the Griffith Observatory. Keep walking through the Berlin Forest until you cross a bridge spanning the Mt. Hollywood Drive Canyon Road tunnel. Keep on weaving up the narrow trail, which will take you up to the unofficially named Taco Peak. When you arrive, you’ll see an 80-square-foot teahouse, plopped into the middle of mother nature.

You’ve reached your destination. Relax, have some tea, and enjoy the view.

Overnight on Monday, June 30, a group of anonymous artists smuggled the diminutive yet sturdy teahouse onto the premises. The structure is made from reclaimed wood from 2007’s Griffith Park fire, along with felled redwoods on the verge of being mulched. The structure resembles a traditional Japanese teahouse, with a sleek slat roof and windows that frame a breathtaking view. “It reminds me of some of the ones used by ancient Japanese tea masters,” tea expert Tiffany Williams explained to Carolina Miranda. “They liked to keep things very simple, very rustic.”

A dangling sign invites visitors to inscribe their dreams and thoughts on the wood. “Write a wish for the city. Maybe a love letter. Or a memory, an observation, a constructive criticism. Ring the bell to seal your wish.” If Yoko Ono had a guerrilla art phase, she’d definitely pull a move like this.

Since the installation earlier this week, many Angelenos have flocked to this mysterious sanctuary. However, according to the artist collective, the L.A. Department of Recreation and Parks is threatening to remove the gift to the city from the premises. There’s a petition circulating online to protect the teahouse, and as of now, it already has over 1,500 signatures. The petition is addressed to the L.A. Department of Recreation and Parks, City Councilman David Ryu, who represents Griffith Park in his district, Mayor Eric Garcetti, and former Councilman Tom LaBonge.

Art should not be destroyed and the tea house is a gift to the city,” the petition states, “a ‘love letter’ celebrating LA. It’s a place for reflection and wishes. It breathes life back into things destroyed, made from reclaimed wood from the Griffith Park Fire. It’s a gesture of peace and a celebration of the artists’ love for Griffith Park. There should be tea houses this meaningful in every park in the world.”

However, there is hope! According to Modern Hiker, the Griffith Park employees encountered seemed smitten by the tiny tea den. “I expected them to be gearing up to take the whole thing down, but they actually seemed fairly charmed by it,” Casey Schreiner explained. “They noted the construction was good, was limited to the already existing concrete, and seemed to be an improvement.”

It’s hard to say how long the enchanting space will be in existence, so visit while you have the chance. And definitely visit before the zen art project sells out.

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Arts – The Huffington Post
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Various Artists – Runnin Wild: The Everest Records Story -1959-1962 (2 CD) (Music CD)

Various Artists – Runnin Wild: The Everest Records Story -1959-1962 (2 CD) (Music CD)


Founded by ambitious ex-Hollywood sound man Harry Belock, Everest’s flagship recordings were of the Jazz and Classical variety however the label also had substantial and distinguished pop and county singles amongst its offerings. This compilation explores those cuts which include such stars as Patsy Cline, King Curtis and Jimmy Isle. The 50 tracks typify US Pop of the Pre-British invasion era. CD1 1. Runnin’ Wild – Dolly Dawn 2. Billy Boy – Jimmy Isle 3. You Say! – Ronny Douglas 4. No One But You – The Lions 5. Jay Walk – King Curtis 6. Heartbroken – Clyde Pitts 7. All Summer Long – Billy Bryan 8. Chop, Chop Hole In The Wall – The Boulevards 9. Passion Flower – Cecile Devile 10. Does My Heartache Show – Jimmy Byron 11. Rick-A-Chick – Joe Seneca 12. I Said Goodbye To My Love – Ketty Lester 13. Foolish – The Danleers 14. My Mind’s Made Up – The Renowns 15. I Can’t Forget – Patsy Cline 16. Billy Goat – The Baker Brothers 17. Independence Day Hora – Wild Bill Davis & Charlie Shavers 18. Carole – Billy Scott 19. Slippin’ And Sloppin’ (Part 1) – The Supertones 20. Yella Shoes – The “4” Deuces 21. Big Big Dream – Billy Grammer 22. You Don’t Have To Be A Tower Of Strength – Gloria Lynne 23. Trees – The Baysiders 24. Like A Waterfall – The Curls 25. I Found My Baby – The Lexingtons CD2 1. I Don’t Wanta – Patsy Cline 2. It Figures – Jimmy Isle 3. The Lone Prairie – King Curtis 4. What A Wonderful Lover – Doris Payne 5. Wild One – The Renowns 6. Open Up Your Arms – Randy Lee 7. Delores – The Boulevards 8. Slippin’ And Sloppin’ (Part 2) – The Supertones 9. Take A Dream – Jackie Walker 10. Blue Moon – The Bel-Aire Girls 11. She’s My Date – Pepe La Staza 12. Bonnie – Billy Bryan 13. Mississippi – Jimmy Byron 14. Forty Days And Forty Nights – Joe Seneca 15. Queen For A Day – Ketty Lester 16. When My Baby Went Away – The Lexingtons 17. Sheila – The Baker Brothers 18. You’ll Come Back – Ronny Douglas 19. Did You Ever See A Dream Walking – Randy Lee 20. I Know Love – Gloria Lynne 21. How High The Moon – The Raymond Scott Orchestra

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Various Artists – 100 Hits (New Years Eve Party) (Music CD)

Various Artists – 100 Hits (New Years Eve Party) (Music CD)


Disk 1 1. Don’t You Want Me – Human League 2. Gold – Spandau Ballet 3. Karma Chameleon – Culture Club 4. Geno – Dexys Midnight Runners 5. Walking on Sunshine – Katrina & the Waves 6. The One and Only – Hawkes, Chesney 7. We Close Our Eyes – Go West 8. Rebel Yell – Idol, Billy 9. Heaven Is a Place on Earth – Carlisle, Belinda 10. Morning Train (Nine to Five) – Easton, Sheena 11. Wired for Sound – Richard, Cliff 12. It Ain’t What You Do, It’s the Way That You Do It – Fun Boy Three & Bananarama 13. Hit Me with Your Rhythm Stick – Dury, Ian & the Blockheads 14. Enjoy Yourself (It’s Later Than You Think) – Specials 15. The Wanderer – Dion & The Belmonts 16. Do Wah Diddy Diddy – Manfred Mann 17. Little Green Bag – Baker, George Selection 18. Mony Mony – James, Tommy & the Shondells 19. I’m into Something Good – Herman’s Hermits 20. The Loco-Motion – Little Eva Disk 2 1. Don’t You (Forget About Me) – Simple Minds 2. Rio – Duran Duran 3. Lifeline – Spandau Ballet 4. The Power of Love – Lewis, Huey & the News 5. Hanging on the Telephone – Blondie 6. Unbelieveable – EMF 7. Bohemian Like You – Dandy Warhols 8. Jerk It Out – Caesars 9. Smile – Supernaturals 10. Alright – Supergrass 11. Trick Me – Kelis 12. Not Fair – Allen, Lilly 13. Whole Again – Atomic Kitten 14. Tubthumping – Chumbawamba 15. Boombastic – Shaggy 16. Superstar – Jamelia 17. Thunder in My Heart – Sayer, Leo 18. Mandian to Bach Ke – Panjabi MC 19. Make Luv – Room 5 20. You Sexy Thing – Hot Chocolate Disk 3 1. Ice Ice Baby – Vanilla Ice 2. U Can’t Touch This – MC Hammer 3. We Don’t Have to Take Our Clothes Off – Stewart, Jermaine 4. It’s a Shame (My Sister) – Love, Monie 5. Back to Life (However Do You Want Me) – Soul II Soul 6. Respectable – Mel & Kim 7. Toca’s Miracle – Fragma 8. Got to Have Your Love – Mantronix 9. I Wanna Be the Only One – Eternal 10. All Rise – Blue 11. Every 1’s a Winner – Hot Chocolate 12. Solid – Ashford & Simpson 13. Would I Lie to You? – Charles & Eddie 14. Rock Your Baby – McCrae, George 15. You Make Me Feel Like Dancing – Sayer, Le

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The Plains Indians: Artists Of Earth And Sky

The Plains Indians: Artists Of Earth And Sky


Accompanying a groundbreaking exhibition, this is the first comprehensive survey of the magnificent artistic traditions of the Plains Indians. The Plains Indians: Artists of Earth and Sky celebrates the extraordinary beauty, power, and spiritual resonance of Plains Indian art throughout time. Richly illustrated, this monumental volume includes a wealth of masterworks from European and North American collections, ranging from a 2,000-year-old Human Effigy stone pipe to a 2011 beaded adaptation of designer shoes. Works of art collected centuries ago by French traders and travelers are presented together with those acquired by Lewis and Clark on their famous expedition of 1804–6, along with objects from the early reservation era and contemporary works based in traditional forms and ideas. The distinct Plains aesthetic—intertwined with the natural world, ephemeral, and materially rich—is revealed through an array of forms and mediums: painting and drawing; sculptural works in stone, wood, antler, and shell; porcupine quill and glass bead embroidery; feather work; painted robes depicting figures and geometric shapes; and richly ornamented clothing and ceremonial objects. Many nations are represented—Osage, Quapaw, Omaha, Crow, Cheyenne, Arapaho, Lakota, Blackfeet, Pawnee, Kiowa, Comanche, Mesquakie, Kansa, and others. With newly researched texts by leading scholars, this important book charts the continuum of centuries of artistic tradition and reflects the significant place that Plains Indian culture holds in European history and in the heritage of North America.
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8 Dead White Male Artists You Should Know

men

Throughout the history of art, many brave and creative spirits have exposed their souls, their imaginations and their ideas about the world through the power of visual expression. Today, we’re honoring eight individuals whose artistic expression has transformed the conversation surrounding representation, the role of the artist, the relationship between figuration and abstraction, and the power of art. The most inspirational part is, they managed to explore these issues and more, as white men.

Behold, eight dead, white, male artists who blow us away with their talent as well as their modesty.***

1. Claude Monet (1840-1926)
“My life has been nothing but a failure.”

monet

The work of French painter Claude Monet (pronounced Mo-Nay) isknown for his paintings of water lilies in the idyllic gardens of Giverny. Sadly, his work remains confined to institutions like the Metropolitan Museum of Art and Musée d’Orsay, and sells for millions of dollars. IMHO, those canvases are whimsical enough to warrant billion dollar price tags.

2. Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519)
“I have offended God and mankind because my work didn’t reach the quality it should have.”

da

Leonardo has been dubbed a “genius,” as well as the “Renaissance humanist ideal.” There are forums dedicated to whether or not he was the most talented person that has ever lived. One of his most celebrated paintings, the “Mona Lisa,” is likely the most famous portrait of all time, but it’s also the most parodied, and sometimes that stuff gets mean spirited.

3. Henri Matisse (1869-1954)
“It has bothered me all my life that I do not paint like everybody else.”

henri matisse

Matisse (pronounced Muh-Tees) is known as one of the most influential artists of the 20th century, as well as the leader of the Fauvists, French for “wild beasts,” a group of artists who privileged intense and unnatural color, sometimes straight from the tube. In 2005 one of his pieces sold for $ 25 million to the Museum of Modern Art. It’s not even one of the super famous ones.

4. Édouard Manet (1832-1883)
“This woman’s work is exceptional. Too bad she’s not a man.”

m

In the mid-19th century, Manet (pronounced Man-ehh?) painted provocative artworks such as “The Luncheon on the Grass,” and “Olympia,” both radical for their use of a nude subject staring straight at the viewer without shame. Some say his career sparked the beginning of modern art. Also, his name sounds a lot like Monet (see #1 on list) who is slightly more famous, which, we can only imagine, must have been frustrating.

5. Michelangelo (1475-1564)
“If people knew how hard I worked to get my mastery, it wouldn’t seem so wonderful at all.”

portrait

The Encyclopedia Britannica subtly states: “Michelangelo was considered the greatest living artist in his lifetime, and ever since then he has been held to be one of the greatest artists of all time.” He’s responsible for works like the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel and the “Pietà,” and yet we’re still left wondering: but who is Michelangelo?

6. Pablo Picasso (1881–1973)
“My mother said to me, ‘If you are a soldier, you will become a general. If you are a monk, you will become the Pope.’ Instead, I was a painter, and became Picasso.”

picasso photo

As Norman Mailer once put it: “By general consensus, Pablo Picasso is the most brilliant and influential artist of this century.” Among other things, he co-founded Cubism, invented constructed sculpture and helped popularize collage. Sadly, however, many individuals still hurl disparaging comments at him, like “my five-year-old could do that.”

7. Paul Gauguin (1848-1903)
“We never really know what stupidity is until we have experimented on ourselves.”

gaug

Gauguin (pronounced Go-gan) is a key figure in Symbolist, Post-Impressionist and Primitivist art. He’s also, perhaps less widely, known as the former stockbroker who left his wife and five children to embark on a hunt to “discover the primitive.” In other words, he moved to Tahiti and took adolescent girls for wives. Get this guy a reality show!

8. Edgar Degas (1834-1917)
“Painting is easy when you don’t know how, but very difficult when you do.”

degas

Degas (pronounced Day-gah) is known for his weightless depictions of ballerinas in motion, combining on-stage performances with awkward behind-the-scenes moments. He’s also known as one of the founders of Impressionism. His bronze sculpture creepily titled “Little Dancer of Fourteen Years” was estimated to draw between $ 25 million and $ 35 million during a Christie’s auction in 2009. There were no bids. It did not sell.

***This is a satirical post. For coverage on the art world outside of dead white European males (DWEM), check out our site on a daily basis.
Comedy – The Huffington Post
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Can artists Procreate Without Going Bankrupt?

I’m a member of two different Facebook groups that have frequent postings; one of them is a group for moms, many of whom also happen to be artists. The other one is a forum for classical singers, a few of whom happen to be parents. There isn’t a lot of crossover topics between the two groups — but this week, unrelated to one another, I read a post on my classical singer group asking whether people who had kids felt that it affected their careers as singers, and another post on my mom’s page asking whether any artists that were also parents were managing to keep their artistic careers going while still staying afloat financially. Where the crossover between these two queries occurred was mostly in the comments section, where people who were artists and parents explained how they managed to keep from moving their families into cardboard boxes, and what sacrifices they had made in order to add children to their lives. Everyone said that whatever sacrifices they had made were worth it, and they wouldn’t change a thing. But almost all of the commenters with kids mentioned that either they or their spouses had moved into some sort of academia or other work in order to pay the bills and remain at least somewhat financially stable. The number of people who had moved in different directions than their original artistic intentions was almost everybody. Most people said they were content with where their choices had led them, but it lead my mom’s group to start a discussion about why it’s next to impossible to be an artist — and especially a couple in which both people are artists and self employed — and make a go of having a family.

For opera singing parents, the challenges are quite extraordinary. Because not only are there all the challenges of being a self-employed artist, whose income is sporadic and difficult to predict, and who has no health or retirement benefits from their job, but we must factor in the concern that our jobs require constant travel, which makes adding a child into the mix pretty insane. Not only do we have to arrange extra plane tickets and different accommodations than may be provided by the company for whom we are working — usually at our own expense — but we have to arrange childcare in a strange place, ahead of time, without even having a chance to meet with the candidates. So a mother must bring her child with her to a strange place, and the very next day leave them with a strange person while they go to rehearsal. Or we leave our child with someone back home for a long period of time. The fees of opera singers have notoriously dwindled in recent years, and the competition has made jobs less available and less frequent. After a singer pays a coach to help them learn their role, and lives in a strange city for several weeks without pay, they then get a lump sum for their performances, of which 10-20 percent gets paid to an agent, and another 15-30 percent should be set aside for taxes. After deducting the costs of monthly health insurance (probably at least $ 700-1000 per month for the singer and child) and any retirement that could be set aside (ha ha — we wish) that doesn’t leave the singer a lot to work with. And I’m not only talking about struggling singers, I’m talking about singers who sing in the major opera houses around the world. And if you’re adding onto that the extra expense of travel, accommodations and possibly childcare, you are left wondering why you bothered to leave your house in the first place. And while other types of artists have different challenges, almost all of them face rising expenses and dwindling profits, and share similar concerns to we opera singing parents.

Which leads me to the question; should artists even bother to procreate? Is it fair to our children that we lead such financially itinerant lifestyles? If someone wants to have a family, shouldn’t they just do the responsible thing and get a “real” job?

The problem with this line of questioning (which so many artists face from friends, family and strangers sitting next to us on airplanes and in coffee shops on a daily basis) is that it really does question whether being an artist is of value to a society at all. Because if having children is so impossible for someone who works as an artist — and I’m not even talking about a struggling “wannabe” artist, but someone who actually makes a living as one — then it suggests that it is not a career worth being compensated for, but merely an avocation for a young and untethered person who doesn’t mind living la vie boheme, using old chairs for firewood and eating sardine sandwiches.

I bring this up because there are other countries who consider these problems. There are countries who provide health care and education to all their citizens (Sweden, Denmark, Norway — most of Europe actually), who provide paid maternity leave to expecting mothers (and fathers) even if their jobs don’t (Canada), who give stipends to every family for each child they have (Germany), and who even have government sponsored excellent childcare as well as insurance for artists who are between jobs (France). Many of these countries also have state sponsored arts funding, coincidentally. So artists are paid pretty well, and don’t have to go around worrying all the time about how they are going to make ends meet. Artists are acknowledged as being participating, contributing members of society, and their worth isn’t taken for granted. Yes, the citizens of these countries also pay higher taxes — but not that much higher considering all the benefits they are offered.

So we’re back to the same question I ask so often in my blog posts — why doesn’t America value artists more and allow for them to continue to contribute without constantly worrying about financial collapse? I’m not talking about handouts — I’m talking about extensive tax breaks for childcare, and access to truly affordable health care, and community support to the organizations that create art so that they can pay artists fair wages. I’m talking about wage earning that is commensurate with education, and acknowledgement that arts organizations enrich communities both fiscally and socially.

Coming full circle back to my Facebook forums and where they intersect — parents all over this country are struggling to make ends meet because of things like childcare and healthcare. Artists all over this country are struggling because of lack of income, lack of jobs and lack of government support. In a way, artists are prepared to make excellent parents because they are used to finding creative solutions to financial hurdles, something most parents have to do many times in their child’s lives, regardless of their occupation. But this isn’t the only thing that can make artists great parents. Artistic parents can’t help but encourage artistically minded children, whether that means artists or merely arts supporters. And we desperately need more people who believe that creativity is a vital arm to our society. So we need artists to keep procreating so we can make a new generation of people who are willing to think creatively and who think of artists as necessary members of their community.

So I say to all artists; go forth and procreate. You are creative. You will figure out a way around the financial and logistical hurdles which you will encounter. And you will hopefully become part of the village so essential to other artists in your community also raising families.

And also; nothing inspires creativity quite like trying to have a conversation with a toddler.
Arts – The Huffington Post
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Mad World: An Oral History of New Wave Artists and Songs That Defined the 1980s

Mad World: An Oral History of New Wave Artists and Songs That Defined the 1980s


Mad World” is a highly entertaining oral history that celebrates the New Wave music phenomenon of the 1980s via new interviews with 35 of the most notable artists of the period. Each chapter begins with a discussion of their most popular song but leads to stories of their history and place in the scene, ultimately painting a vivid picture of this colorful, idiosyncratic time. Mixtape suggestions, fashion sidebars, and quotes from famous contemporary admirers help fill out the fun. Participants include members of Duran Duran, New Order, The Smiths, Tears for Fears, Adam Ant, Echo and the Bunnymen, Devo, ABC, Spandau Ballet, A Flock of Seagulls, Thompson Twins, and INXS.

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These Eco-Friendly Artists Are Dreaming Of A Plastic Free Christmas

White Christmases are so 2013.

This year we’re taking a hint from our favorite artistic-activist collective Luzinterruptus and dreaming of a plastic-free Christmas, just like the ones we used to know — you know, prior to industrialization and everything. In lieu of traditional greenery, we’re ogling their Consumerist Christmas Tree, a symbolic challenge to our plastic-dominated society as well as the unbridled consumerism that takes hold during the holiday season. As ideologically commanding as the unorthodox Christmas decor may be, it’s just as visually captivating.

dream

This year Luzinterruptus created the installation in an industrial town in Staffordshire, England called Stoke on Trent. The artists enlisted the neighborhood to donate their plastic bags for the piece. About 2,000 bags and 11 days later, the luminescent tree was born, as was some illuminating commentary on the contagious consumerism that comes along this time of year.

“The installation’s idea was the same as last year’s,” Luzinterruptus explained in a statement — last year’s was installed in Durham. “On one hand, to represent, in a symbolic and universally recognizable way, the overconsumption of plastic bags; and, on the other hand, the squandering that typically takes place during these holidays which have set aside the religious and traditional meaning of these holidays to turn them into a real invitation to uncontrolled consumption.”

There you have it, folks. If you don’t feel like trekking all the way to the Christmas tree lot, dig into your recycling bin and have an environmentally conscious holiday season. Happy holidays and have yourselves a green little Christmas!


Arts – The Huffington Post
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Why Do We Like Having Sex with Artists?

Art is having a strange moment right now. The market today is a business, pure and simple — a depraved scramble for big money; it’s as much about the businessmen, financiers, and lawyers as it is about the artists and their work. I’m not the only one who’s noticed that. There seem to be a lot of young people in New York today making “art,” simply because being an artist is cool, and because of the title’s apparent link to money, power, and, well, … sex. But just because you have blue hair and an experimental Instagram doesn’t mean I want to fuck you — quite the opposite, in fact, especially if it means getting on the J train to deep Bushwick.
Arts – The Huffington Post
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In the New York Film Fest the Outsize Egos of Artists Rule

There’s sometimes a common theme or recurring character that threads through a film festival. This can be especially striking in a fest as tightly curated as the New York Film Festival. Such convergences usually happen by accident, according to Kent Jones, director of programming at the NYFF.

Often… what it has to do with is the time. Obviously, when people are all making movies at the same time, it’s inevitable that some of them are going to be responding to similar events, occurrences… what’s happening on the horizon… you get movies that talk to each other and that’s always great.

I’m not sure how it’s related to the times, but the 52nd New York Film Fest abounds in characters who make art — on the page, in a concert hall, in movies and theater, or on a canvas. Why so many artists inhabit the fest lineup in this supremely materialistic age I’m not sure. Like most everything, it’s likely connected with the modern plague of economic inequity. Yes, the folks who increasingly own much of the planet can “buy” an artist. But no one can buy talent. Thus the artist’s become a sort of unlikely hero for our times.

Top ranked among these artist-centric films is the not-to-be-missed Mr. Turner by Mike Leigh. It resurrects JMW Turner, the English Romantic landscape painter (late 1700’s to the mid 1800s) known as “the painter of light,” along with a supporting cast of eccentrics to delight Dickens. Awarded Best Actor at Cannes, the superb Timothy Spall captures Turner in his last 25 years in all his curmudgeonly glory. The film departs from Leigh’s trademark loosey goosey accounts of Britain’s working and underclass, harking back to the meticulous period recreation of Topsy Turvy and Gilbert and Sullivan’s creation of The Mikado.

Some will find Turner plotless — but in fact, Turner offers a deep-in plot, as Leigh traces an artist’s inner journey to push his gift to its farthest limits. And going the distance means, for Turner, to hell with everyone else! Leigh’s portrait is unsparing in its revelations of Turner’s odious treatment of a cast-off wife and daughters, as well as a devoted woman servant he occasionally humps like a beast.

This sorry business is leavened by an interlude depicting Turner’s rather charming romance with his landlady at the seaside town of Margate, the inspirational site of much of his work. Leigh drenches the screen in images that arguably make Turner the most gorgeous film of the year. On display are not just the glorious landscapes — Leigh and his brilliant production designer and DP Dick Pope have bottled and put up on the screen nothing less than the palette and light of Turner’s paintings ; the viewer is literally bathed in them.

There are brief, throwaway images — Turner sitting in a boat on a shadowed pond amidst shafts of light, anyone? — that will make you sit up and gasp. Timothy Spall’s ingenious arsenal of grunts seems the perfect “language” to convey his unique style of courtship, dismissal of critics, struggle to surpass his own art — and the sheer difficulty of living.

Featuring Jason Schwartzman as a Philip Rothian-type novelist, Listen Up, Philip offers a way less illuminating portrait of the artist’s swollen ego. Much of Alex Ross Perry’s film tracks the interaction of the writer as self-centered shit with his live-in girlfriend Elizabeth Moss (miscast and misused). Jonathan Pryce, an older, once-eminent writer who has equally alienated most everyone, invites Philip to his upstate country house to write and regroup. This leads to a college teaching gig that gives Philip a fresh opportunity to play toxic boyfriend.

The film’s fearless display of metastatic ego and satire of things literary is, I suppose, good for a few hollow laughs. And a drunken bacchanal involving Schwartzman, Pryce, and two game women they’ve picked up at a singles event is shot in lurching, tipsy verite. But the treatment of the women as mere furniture in a male escapade — they literally get tossed out into the night — leaves a sour taste. And if I never see a woman tearing up over some asshole behaving badly, even if he is a literary genius, it won’t be too soon. Perry’s quirky, off-balance style offers a welcome antidote to canned studio fare. Even so, how did his minor effort make the fest’s main slate?

Musical artists take center stage in Damien Chazelle’s Whiplash. Anchored by Miles Teller and his awards-fodder turn as a jazz drummer, this may just be the feelgood film of the year. This despite the suffering the artist-musician undergoes in his drive for perfection. I have nothing to add to the glowing reviews, except: great screenplay, great acting, jazz to die for — what’s not to love? It’s in theaters. Go see it.

Then there’s the curious case of NYFF closer Birdman. A departure in style for gloom mongering Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, it’s an antic, literally high-flying account of a former iconic film star’s attempt to make a comeback by mounting a Broadway play. Given all the buzz and plaudits from the Venice Film Fest, I came with high expectations. Just think: Michael Keaton in a barn burning role that parallels his own Batmanic past as a movie franchise star; Edward Norton as a loose cannon of an actor intent on screwing up Keaton’s production of a play based on a story by Raymond Carver; and presiding over it all, the genius of D.P. Emmanuel Lubezki (Gravity, The Tree of Life).

The seamless sweep of the camera tunneling through the backstage corridors and planing over the great old theaters of Broadway — not to mention Keaton taking to the sky, birdman style, in cunning CG segments — gives the illusion of a film created in a single take. But will the average moviegoer get that? I doubt it. They’ll get the adrenalin rush, but not the technical leger-de-main. Sometimes programmers paint themselves into a vacuum.

As Keaton’s strung-out daughter, Emma Stone uncorks an impassioned monologue about how the viral world has made old dad obsolete (a highlight, though her features are so harsh they belong on Mount Rushmore). Stone’s tirade echos and “talks to” a similar one by Kristen Stewart giving Juliette Binoche the news that she and her ilk are old school, over.

Less riveting is the ego battle between Keaton and Edward Norton, the latter scampering about in his skivvies, displaying a gut in need of gym time. Birdman unwittingly betrays a disgust with human bodies; Norton’s come-on line, “play with my balls,” stands in for witty repartee. The women revolving around the two alpha males, including an ex wife, abandoned gf, and hot-to-trot daughter, are too carelessly drawn to engage us. Given the many challenges of life in 21st century America, it’s no wonder that Birdman takes to the skies.
Entertainment – The Huffington Post
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Artists Take on the Subject of Geometry in Jeddah

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Adrian Esparza, Untitled (No. 01), 2014, Felt pen, pencil on paper, 38 x 46 cm. Courtesy of the artist and Taubert Contemporary Gallery.


As we’ve written about elsewhere on ARTPHAIRE, many of the most interesting developments in the art world are currently coming from Arab countries.

In some ways this shouldn’t be surprising, as most of these countries are currently experiencing the same conditions which kickstarted the electrical storm of creativity that the West experienced in the second half of the 20th century — youthful populations, entrenched social structures to rebel against creatively, war, social upheaval, an opening up to globalization and booming economies.

However, the scope and scale of a new show in Jeddah, “The Language of Human Consciousness” will still pleasantly surprise many western visitors. Billed as “the biggest art exhibition in the Kingdom,” it includes the work of 39 artists from all over the world, responding to the theme of geometry. “Accepting its heritage as a symbol of purity, intelligence and perfection and bringing it towards a more contemporary interpretation as a language for exploring the atypical, the imperfect and the alternative.”

In Saudi itself, Jeddah has an interesting relationship with contemporary art. In the 1970s, its mayor, Dr. Mohammed Said Farsi, undertook the Jeddah Beautification Project in which a large collection of sculpture, including work by Henry Moore and Ottmar Hollmann, was created for public display. Farsi is also one of the most notable collectors of 20th Century Egyptian art, with Christie’s offering his unrivaled collection back in 2010 in a major sale.

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Sol Lewitt. “Untitled Drawing (Ref 03),” 1988, Gouache on paper, 54 x 86 cm. Courtesy of Lisson Gallery.

This new show works at a smaller scale than Dr. Farsi’s grand project, but is no less creatively ambitious. Reaching back to the statement of Plato about geometry — that even the most uneducated Greek slave’s soul “must have always possessed this knowledge” — a range of western artists including Josef Albers, Richard Deacon and Sol Lewitt have created geometric work alongside the likes of Rasheed Araeen and Dana Awartani.

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Monir Shahroudy Farmanfarmaian, “Drawing 02, 2009,” Felt marker, color pencil and mirror on paper, 62 x 95 cm. Courtesy of the artist and the Third Line Gallery.

There are several fascinating aspects to this show. Firstly, how a potentially cold, clinical subject can produce work as wide ranging as Sahand Hesmayan‘s brutal, metallic “Nail” (2012) and the delicate, technical surfaces of Monir Farmanfarmaian‘s “Drawing 2.” (2009). And secondly, how geometry has proven significant to such different cultures in different ways — cropping up in everything from psychedelia to op-art in the west, while reaching back into the history of mathematics, astronomy and science as a crucial part of Islam’s intellectual culture. Throughout the show, patterns and links emerge between the artists, with the works unconsciously echoing each other and shapes replicating in unexpected ways.

The Language of Human Consciousness” is on view at Athr Gallery through October 10, 2014.

–Justin Quirk is contributor to ARTPHAIRE. He is a journalist and editor based in London, England. He is editorial director of House, the Soho House Group’s quarterly culture journal, and also of Victor, Hasselblad’s photographic biannual. He writes features for The Guardian and Sunday Times newspapers, Wallpaper* magazine and Phaidon’s Agenda site. When not working he mentors young creatives at The Cut, he writes graphic novels and curates exhibitions for the Canadian artist Nathan James.
Arts – The Huffington Post
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This Is What Happens When Artists Take On Ninja Turtles In An Epic Rap Battle

We didn’t think there would be much beef between artists and green, weapon-wielding toy reptiles — but apparently, there is.

And it is awesome.

In this video from Epic Rap Battles of History, the four Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles — Donatello, Michelangelo, Leonardo, and Raphael — take on the iconic artists they were named for in a truly epic and hilarious rap battle.

Who wins? You decide.

Entertainment – The Huffington Post
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Artist’s Statements of the Old Masters

To be successful as an artist in this day and age it is crucial that you justify your work as being contemporary. To be “contemporary” your work needs to be explained and justified in the language of postmodern theory. As works of art have evolved to require less skill in their making, artists have been become increasingly reliant on intellectual pedigrees substantiated by theory. Five hundred years ago, this wasn’t a concern.

In fact, it strikes me that without the right kind of theoretical writing to validate their work many of the great artists of the past would be in real trouble in today’s art world: can you get into an MFA program or a decent gallery without an artist’s statement? I doubt it.

An Old Master working today would definitely need some strong postmodern language to support his/her “artistic practice.” Here are some samples of the kinds of “Artist’s Statements” that I think would be required of European Old Masters if they tried to get a show in New York or Los Angeles today.

Artist’s Statements of the Old Masters

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Juan Sánchez Cotán, Quince, Cabbage, Melon and Cucumber, 1602

The San Diego Museum of Art

“My work explores the temporal duality of objects/non-objects in a hegemonic space/non-space. Indeed, my fruit and vegetable simulacra juxtaposes pre-Marxist male/female homo/heterosocial redactions of materiality through recurring formal concerns.”

-Juan Sánchez Cotán

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Jean-Honore Fragonard, The Bathers, c. 1765, The Louvre

“By disrupting the implied heteronormative discourse of antediluvian mythology, my paintings imply a personal mythopoeic narrative that both transcends and embodies the male gaze. By investigating the callipygian forms of a complex homosocial nexus in an anti-Lacanian context I depict a multitude of redundant, overlapping and coded tasks and roles.”

– Jean-Honore Fragonard

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Michelangelo Buonarroti, The Rebellious Slave, The Louvre, 1513

“The pre-homoeroticized body forms both my field of action and the basis of my conceptual taxonomy. My sculptures explore both the flux of transfixable signifiers and their complimentary anecdotal formations. My choice of Carrara marble as a medium creates a dialectic between proto-Classical conceptions of idealized form and later Humanistic naturalism. Each figure’s physical struggle is simultaneously inoperative and adjectival.”

-Michelangelo Buonarroti

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Hieronymus Bosch, detail of The Garden of Earthly Delights, c.1500, The Prado

“An implied quasi-theatrical sublimity in my work creates a tension between modes of engagement with internal and external realities. While attempting to bridge a rift in the continuum between metaphysics and narrativity I investigate a lexicon of parafictional erotic proclivities.”

– Hieronymus Bosch

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Titian, The Venus of Urbino, 1538, The Uffizi Gallery

“Woman, goddess, subject, object and signifier: Venus activates both the Utopian and Dystopian spaces of the Venetian Palazzo. By inducing an affirmative valence of feminine/objective lucidity Venus poses a question: has our tendency to privatize desire further affirmed or disenfranchised her archetypal significance?”

– Tiziano Vecellio

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Diego Velázquez, Las Meninas, 1639, The Prado

“In addressing the collapse of personal autonomy and identity in an authoritarian/monarchist space I imply a multiplicity of didactic constructions and formations. By investigating the formal and informal withdrawal of the central and objective role of the “subject” I address and investigate the role of signifiers and their ontological suggestions. I also reverse and subjugate the traditional symbol of the dog (“Fido”) into a subject/object reflection of the hierarchical and appropriated role of the artist in a Catholic/Baroque social construct.”

– Diego Rodríguez de Silva y Velázquez

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Rembrandt Van Rijn, Self-portrait with Beret and Turned-up Collar, 1659

The National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.

“Life etches itself onto our faces as we grow older, showing our violence, excesses or kindnesses.”

– Rembrandt Van Rijn

OK: I had to slip that in there.

That is what an actual artist’s statement sounds like…
Arts – The Huffington Post
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I Respect Music: Artists’ Pay for Radio Play

Inspired by the over 40,000 “likes” that Blake Morgan received last December on his Huffington Post article, “Art and Music Are Professions Worth Fighting For,” Morgan decided the time was right to launch a petition, I Respect Music, supporting a musician’s right to receive pay for radio airplay.

The idea for I Respect Music was born in an op-ed I wrote for The Huffington Post in mid-December. Once the article went viral and passed 40,000 ‘likes,’ it was clear that the idea — and those three words — had resonated far more deeply than anyone could have expected.

It turns out that United States is the only democratic country in the world that doesn’t pay artists for airplay and shares that distinction with a handful of other nations including Iran, China, North Korea, Vietnam and Rwanda.

So far, with little fanfare, the petition has received nearly 10,000 signatures and brought much-needed attention to one of many inequalities facing artists today.

On Tuesday, February 25, the newly formed NYC Chapter of the Content Creators Coalition will be staging a free concert and rally, Artists’ Pay for Radio Play, featuring David Byrne from Talking Heads, Marilyn Carino, Mike Mills from REM, John McCrea from Cake and other guests.

The timing couldn’t be better. Congress, for the first time since 1976, is reviewing and rewriting copyright law and doing so within the context of the Internet and the digital distribution of creative works. The stakes couldn’t be higher, as the creative community and Silicon Valley struggle to find a middle ground that will serve both sides.

To say the creative community is overmatched in power, money and influence would be a serious understatement. But the situation is not hopeless. After all, artists are gifted communicators. If they choose to step forward, unite and share their concerns about their survival in the digital economy, artists can move the needle of public opinion.

Fortunately for artists, after over a decade of standing in the shadows of the Internet, the darkness is finally lifting and musicians, filmmakers, authors, photographers and all artists are finally speaking out about their future. A future that is unravelling right before their very eyes.

The value of copyrights is being quickly depreciated, a crisis that hits hardest not best-selling authors like me, who have benefited from most of the recent changes in bookselling, but new and so-called midlist writers. — Scott Turow, president of The Authors Guild.

Because of artists reluctance to speak out in the past, the serious struggle that mid-level artists are experiencing is something only the artist community is really aware of. People who aren’t working artists have no idea how devastating ad-supported piracy has been; let alone how difficult it has become for artists to receive reasonable compensation for their work on the Internet through legal sites.

Fortunately, last year was a breakout year for musicians speaking out. In addition to Blake Morgan, Lou Reed, Don Henley, David Byrne, The Black Keys, Thom Yorke, Zoe Keating and others have stepped up, joining artists like David Lowery, who has been on the front line of this debate for years.

In a recent interview in the L.A. Times, Don Henley had this to say:

“….my musical brethren and I are no longer artists; we’re not creators — we are merely “content providers.” Copyright and intellectual property mean nothing to the technocracy. They’ve built multi-billion dollar global empires on the backs of creative, working people who are uncompensated.”

For many, music is simply the prize in a box of Cracker Jacks.

People, especially those who grew up with the Internet, don’t see art as work and believe that unlimited exposure is the best thing that ever happened to artists. Tragically, after being available for free for so long on thousands of ad-supported pirate sites, music is now perceived by many as valueless.

But if artists can’t earn a living from their work, how can they continue to focus and commit to creating?  And as a society how much do we value music, film, literature and all art forms in our lives? These are important questions that need to be addressed before it is too late.

There is no question that those who represent technology will aggressively move their agenda forward in Congress on Copyright reform. Reform that will favor their business interests over the future of art in America.

Could I Respect Music be a beginning, where more artists join together and start a loud, public conversation about fair compensation and greater control over the distribution of their work?

Blake Morgan is opening the door with this petition; it’s a numbers game. If you’re a musician or a fan and you haven’t signed the petition you need to ask yourself, why not?
Entertainment – The Huffington Post
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