Sunday, February 28, 2010

The "Golden" End of an Era

Damien Hirst
The Golden Jubilee (Red) 2008

End of an Era
Damien Hirst is showing at the Gagosian again. This time at the Uptown Madison location.
The exhibit gives out a leaflet that begins with this dialogue:

Gordon Brown: If you want to make fun of somebody, who would it be?
Damien Hirst: God

So with "End of an Era" he seems to be playing with the thought of the end of time as much as the end of our wealth, I guess. It is then funny how he does it with help of diamonds and gold, climaxing in a Bull's Head with Golden Horn which actually bears the title of the show.

This time Hirst uses artificially made diamonds after having famously used 20 million dollars on a diamond skull in 2007 (For the love of God). Criticized for maybe having used blood diamonds, he still sold the skull for 100 million dollar, so I guess it was worth it.

I think his work has great intrigue, but some of these pieces remind me of Trump tower ornaments and that is really not my favorite part of this amazing city. 

I want to end it with a comment from a man who came up to me during the viewing.

"Ha, this is like the Tiffany of art isn't it. I don't like any of it. Give me the Lichtenstein (Entablature #4 1971) or the Walter de Maria (Large Rod Series: Circle/Rectangle 11, 1986) instead, those are the only ones I like here"

I couldn't help but laugh a little. It is just so refreshing when people speak their mind, and it happens way too rarely. Now, I didn't particularly think those two pieces were that interesting, and would have run away with a Hirst any time, but he had a point.
       Forgotten Promises                                     

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Thinking of You!

Barbara Kruger 1999

From the Whitney Biennal 2010 
More to come:)

Friday, February 26, 2010

Thomas Demand


If you are looking for a romantic "Clearing" in the middle of Manhattan, a place where you can have a Cocktail, relax in low sofas and enjoy the ambience of a fantastic piece of Art. Then the Bar Room at the Modern is the place to go to.
The Clearing is placed as the backdrop in the Bar Room. First I thought this was a spectacular forrest photography (maybe it was the Cocktail working?). But, when you get more "intimate" with the picture you find that it is a "handmade forrest".
Thomas Demand had help from 30 assistants for this piece and they used about 270, 000 paper leaves, dye cut in 80 different shades. The fabulous light you can see is made of one the strongest movie light you can find "The Sun Machine" and the photograph had to be taken in a hurry so the leaves would not take fire. 

It is gorgeous outside with the snow, but with the school closed, car doors frozen and the cold biting so hard that it is making my fingers stiff. I must admit I would prefer to fall into this forrest and dream of spring.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Andy Goldsworthy


I first discovered Andy Goldsworthy with the movie "Rivers and 
Tides" in 2001, I was stunned by the beauty he could make out 
of the simplest things.

"I stop up at a place or pick up a material
because I feel that there is
something to be discovered"

As soon as I heard there were some pieces of his his work at the La 
Jolla Museum of Contemporary Art in San Diego in 2003 I had to go.
Living in L.A. at the time it was just a fun little trip. Although, they 
only had a few pieces exhibited, I was able to see his work up close.
How he builds large egg shapes (Chairns) out of stone and how his 
work can be done without intervention of anything else than what is 
given. I also remember a large beautiful wooden sculpture covering 
a whole room.

But this is memories from a long time ago. The reason I want to 
bring him up now is to show you a true ArtEco artist one who is
deeply Environmental, in tune with nature and beauty.
Andy Goldsworthy is a British a Sculptor, Photographer and Environ-
mentaltist now living in Scotland. He creates art in and with nature, 
some to last, others to disappear with time, weather or water...

Watch this little clip and if you enjoy it, watch the "Rivers and Tides"
Documentary. It feels like a deep meditation.
With love!

Monday, February 22, 2010


Rob Ryan "Can we shall we"

Splash: Paper Under The Knife

"....Taking paper for granted and therein lies it's appeal as an art medium;
it´s true value is discovered only in it´s transformation"

There is an exhibit at the Museum of Arts and Design that I would like you to go and see.
If you are not in New York, look at some of these pictures and you can get a sense of the beauty of this show. I have a heart out for Art that combines text, lots of meaning and plots, it folds two of my greatest passions together "Art & Literature". This exhibit was filled with subtext, symbolism and feelings. 

Luckily my eyesight is better again and the vision doctor actually said there is nothing wrong at all. Except that I have to let my new medicine balance itself out (so there, the synthroid is to blame). 
Happy I am, that once again I passed that scare screen and I continue being one of the lucky ones.

So of I am to see more art. I had never visited the Museum of Arts and Design on Columbus Circle before. Shame on me... This was not even the exhibit I intended to see but I stranded in these 2 floors with a heaven of art.   
Beatrice Coron a piece from "Hell"
"Hell, Heaven can be found on the floor above" as  Beatrice Coron´s art is telling us. Dutifully we run upstairs to see if heaven has colors or how it can entice us to want to go there... I am in my pink period so I wished for something pink, my friend was hoping for a rainbow colored heaven. But, "Heaven" was dark and black as "Hell" just a bit lighter when it comes to the amount of images and of course there was no one being hanged.... That was a bit of a disappointment to us but nevertheless the work is impeccable.

If you meet Mr. Gary one of the security guards at the Museum, you are fortunate.  This guy is beaming of passion for art and knowledge. He excitedly told us the story behind "Alex" by Oliver Herring.   
Alex, was a man who had stomach cancer and knowing he was going to die. He contacted Oliver Herring to make a sculpture of him in lots of vibrant colors. He wanted to be remembered as colorful not grey and dying. Oliver Herring makes art where he sculpts the body of his "muse" and takes 100´s of pictures of the body and then fits it all perfectly together. "Alex" was so real we felt like he was breathing, a bit creepy but pretty brilliant.                            

Oliver Herring "Alex"

There is too little space for me to dwell on all of these great artists that is represented. Among, Judy Pfaff "Bogue Lisa" is fantastic, she made me believe her piece smelled like flowers (made of honeycomb, coffee filter etc.) Olafur Eliassen is forever brilliant and his piece here is a smart "Your house" Book.

I want to dwell on two other artists. Andrea Dezso with "Tunnel Books" Small boxes lined up beside each other with a whole world inside every one of them, stunning!
Andrea Dezso "Tunnel Books"

Last Brian Dettmer who performs surgery on illustrated volumes so it turns into something like a graphic novel. Here with "Standard American".
Brian Dettmer "Standard American"

My friend had made lunch reservations at the glorious Jean George, so we had to go! Otherwise I might have still been standing there. So many details, so much beauty and talent.

Friday, February 19, 2010


Void Gazing Pavillion (Eye), 2007


These last two weeks I have had such a hard time focusing, watching and reading. First I thought that I might just be exhausted, or that it will just pass. Today I am finally going to get it checked out.
Not being able to read more than ten pages before my eyes starts hurting is quite devastating. I feel almost undressed and naked. I am a person who never leaves the house without a book in my purse, but lately I have given up and actually looked at the Saul Bellow book I am reading with dread.  Last night it peaked with an intense headache after watching the wonderful TV- movie "Temple Grandin" I just could not stop and I had to watch it to the end. When I went to bed I covered my eyes with a headband to make me feel like I am placing my eyes restfully back into their sockets and then I drifted off to think about these art pieces, that I viewed a while back. 

The intense "Void Gazing Pavillion (Eye)" by Hsien-Chien Huang followed me into dream world.
This is actually a light box with print on acetate. Looking closely at the eye it has an immense amount of details. It is an unforgettable piece and love at first sight for me.
The artist is from Taiwan and is presented by Bryce Wolkowitz Gallery in Chelsea. In the gallery there was also two other fantastic light boxes. The "Silence Roaring Den (Mouth) 2007, and "Vision - Tasting Ward (Nose)" 2007. I am not sure if they still are on view but enjoy the feel of them here and off I go to the vision Doctor. With love!

"Vision-Tasting Ward (Nose) 2007

"The Silence Roaring Den (Mouth") 2007

Saturday, February 13, 2010

My Hands are My Heart!

My Hands are My Heart (1991)


"I think about time for art
more than about space for art"

Gabriel Orozco´s exhibit at the MoMa filled me with a mix of great admiration most of the time but also with boredom. His intention? He says he would like to "disappoint" with his paintings and so he does, they are way to repetitive for me. His yoghurt caps and the shoe box does not do anything for me either. But with the photography "My Hands are My Heart" he is forgiven. I am in love with this image! With the red clay "heart" in his hands, it makes me feel like he is holding my heart in his hands. 
(I read somewhere that it could be read as a reference to excrement, I am trying to forget that part).
Other favorites of mine are the "La DS" 1993, a modified Citroen, that has the center removed and put together again into one body without an engine. "Four Bicycles (There is always one Direction)" 1994. One of his many artworks that tends to make use of "O"  a lot, probably as a substitute for "I" a narcissistic fronting of "O"s in his own name. The piece also represents Rotterdam, like a lot of his art it is inspired by and characterizes where it was made. 

Gabrial Orozco has never had his own studio, he always travelled a lot and used what his surroundings was giving him. On the streets finding rubber or a telephone book in an empty apartment he borrows. He also works in Galleries and Museums. He travels light, what a brilliant freedom for art making!

One of the later pieces that is on view at the MoMa is the "Mobile Matrix" 2006. An Archaeological  piece of work with bones from a giant whale found in the National Park in Baja California, Mexico. The skeleton was put together with a team of 20 in Mexico City and decorated with (again) circles. These sort of "Tattoos" though reminds me of beautiful Maorian spirals. This piece will be shipped back Monday to the Public Library in Mexico City where it is a permanent Installation. But, you still have time to see the rest of the exhibit that runs until March 1st. 
Then the Marina Abramovic exhibit "The Artist is Present" begins and I can´t wait to see it.

"Mobile Matrix" 2006

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Tino Sehgal

These are the "Hottest" pictures in Town!
Totally illegal!
Well, We sat at the Guggenheim and pointed our I-phones at the art work... If You dare I dare! And dare we did until the guards waved their warning fingers.
There are no public pictures of this exhibit, no advertisement... and there are for the first time an open Guggenheim cleared of art objects.
Left we are with Tino Sehgals masterly interactive work.

First, we are met by the slow dancing and kissing couple, beautifully choreographed. Then you start moving upwards in the rotunda and you expect nothing. I mean it is empty, what is there to expect? Quickly I am being pulled over by a young girl. "Will you follow me?" "Yes" I answer playfully, what is happening now? Then she starts asking me about "Progress". I was so baffled by the whole concept that I think my answer was rather silly, especially since when I was moved on to the next person, a young man, she told him the word is "Self-Development". So I felt completely outsmarted, by the child....:) Anyway, we moved on with "Self- Development" and when he disappeared (I was left talking to myself) until suddenly a grown man started conversing about a Subway "Research" regarding who is willing to give up their seat? The last person was a kind looking older man who ended with the question "When did you understand that you were and adult?". Help, I thought to myself, do I really need to answer that? Do I have to be an adult? But, he insisted, until he got an adequate answer from me.
You, though will have to make a guess....

It might seem strange, but the whole affair seemed so refreshing.
Having an unexpected conversation that was so "Driven" made
me think about how few interesting conversations happens on a daily basis - and how much I miss it.

I did go by Anish Kapoor´s "Memory". A 24- ton volume of Cor-Ten steel somehow filling up and out of a side room. You had to view it from three different angles and rooms. Somehow looking into the black whole of the piece made me empty and a bit tired.

So, I walked back down and continued watching the love dance waiting for the "Kiss" or the "Gentle touch".
Perfect for a Valentine date view? Or will the questions and the dialogue be too revealing for a new couple?

Monday, February 8, 2010

Yao Lu: New Landscapes

Not many words from me lately. It has been a bit of a rough week, but here I am thinking about art again.
I stumbled upon this artist at the Bruce Silverstein gallery lately.
At first I did not make a note of this picture, from the distance you only think oh! well, another picturesque chinese landscape...
But as soon as you close in on it you feel hit by a wake up call to some scary reality.
The picture is like a dream that has fallen apart with a world full of trash. In the middle of the rubble you see a small pearl of a temple. It is the first you see and the last you leave with. Is there hope?
There was only one of his chromogenic prints on view at the Gallery, and his play on past and present made me crave more. The title is almost poetic;

"New Landscape Part 2 - YLO3 View of the autumn Mountains in the Distance" (2008)

The Bejing artist Yao Lu (born 1967)  is what I would call a real ARTECO artist.

I will end this little art spotlight with his own words:

"Today China is developing dramatically and many things are under constant construction. Meanwhile many things have disappeared and continue to disappear. The rubbish dumps covered with the 'shield', a green netting, are a ubiquitous phenomenon in China.”

Monday, February 1, 2010

Warhol and the art World!

Richard Polsky: I sold Andy Warhol (too soon)

I started reading this book thinking, should I just feel sorry for this guy? Richard Polsky is telling his sad story of selling out his green Warhol "Fright Wig" painting.
The reason: To keep his wife!!!

"A woman who never met a shop she didn´t like"

Well, he did not get to keep either. He sold the painting for $320,000 at an Auction. A few years later another "Fright Wig" painting ended up selling for 1.2 million pounds and his wife went out the door with a few bags from Chanel. Ouch, that hurts!

It is not a flattering picture of the art industry Mr. Polsky is portraying. He says:

I used to say the art business was like high school with money.
But I was wrong. It was more like grade school with money.

I feel a little tired of the Warhol hysteria to be quite honest. In 2006 the 32 soup can pictures were in theory worth around $375 million (owned by MoMa). The first time it was shown to the public, the gallery next door put 32 cans in their window and wrote "Free" on it. Controversy aside, I see his importance in art history, but still all that money? Is it not a little too sickening?
Mr. Polsky describes how collectors work on keeping the prices high for what they collect also how hard it is for a new collector to be allowed, to buy a piece of art by a famous artist, there could be a "waiting list". A new collector might have to buy an inferior piece before it will be allowed to buy from the cream. This is not considering Art auctions of course, where you just bid yourself to the top. He also describes the hardship of being an art dealer and a gallery in the age of Auction house domination.

I enjoyed his honesty. But, I do not want to be one of those that he writes about.

And you don´t want to be any of these:

Acronyms for annoying individuals in the art business:
B.W.O.T. - Big waste of time- used to describe a client who´s basically a cheapskate - common in the business.
S.C.A.D. - Sexually confused art dealer - self- explanatory- Very common in the business.
O.F.U. - Zero follow - up- a dealer who puts a deal in play and then fails to follow through on the details - exceedingly common in the business.