Tag Archive | Art

Modern Art Monday Presents: Roy Lichtenstein, Stepping Out

Stepping Out
Photo By Gail

By the 1970’s, Lichtenstein turned his eye toward the history of art, appropriating figures and motifs from the first half of the twentieth century and repainting them with Benday dots – the means of shading in newsprint and magazine pictures – in his signature palette of bright primary colors. For Stepping Out, (1978), he took one of Fernand Leger’s famous compositions, Three Musicians (1944), and added a female figure whose dramatically reduced and displaced features resemble the Surrealist women painted by Picasso in the 1930s.

Roy Lichtenstein’s Stepping Out is part of the permanent collection at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in NYC.

Yes, It Exists: God, I Don’t Even Know Your Name, The Novel

God, I Don’t Even Know Your Name
All Photos By Gail

Eva is a hot mess. When her promising art career in New York takes a plunge, she enters rehab and finds sobriety—but not peace of mind. She escapes to Europe and loses herself in one hook up after another using Bangly, the newest dating app. She meets a run-of-the-mill Finnish curator and thinks it’s love. Or is it just wanderlust?

God, I Don’t Even Know Your Name by Andrea McGinty is the third installment of New Lovers, a series of short erotic fiction published by Badlands Unlimited. Inspired by Maurice Girodias’ legendary Olympia Press, New Lovers features the raw and uncut writings of authors new to the erotic romance genre. Each story has its own unique take on relationships, intimacy, and sex, as well as the complexities that bedevil contemporary life and culture today.

Each novella in the New Lovers series is an independent story of about 12,000 – 18,000 words in length. God, I Don’t Even Know Your Name is a Eurotrip of epic sexual and artistic proportions with stunning locales, a myriad of men, and one undeniably resilient heroine.

The design of New Lovers pays homage to the classic covers of the books published by Olympia Press. The “soft-touch” lamination and embossed lettering on the front covers of the paperback editions make these novellas a precious edition to any library. Both paperback and ebook editions feature special color endpaper artworks by Paul Chan.

God, I Don’t Even Know Your Name

Monir Farmanfarmaian: Infinite Possibility, Mirror Works and Drawings at the Guggenheim

Installation View
Room Full of Mirrors…All Photos By Gail

If you are planning a trip to the Guggenheim Museum to see the On Kawara Exhibit – which is pretty sweet – you may be disappointed to discover that the Art Nazis are out in full force, forbidding photography in the Rotunda. And, frankly, that sucks, because if I can’t take pictures, it’s like I wasn’t even there.

Fortunately for those of us to like to capture and share the memory of seeing of great art, the Guggenheim is also currently hosting the very fantastic Infinite Possibility: Mirror Works and Drawings -1974-2014 featuring the work of Persian artist Monir Shahroudy Farmanfarmaian, whose artistic practice weds the geometric patterns and cut-glass mosaic techniques of her Iranian heritage with the rhythms of modern Western geometric abstraction.

Monir with Sculpture
Monir in her Tehran Studio (1975) Working on Heptagon Star

This is the first U.S. museum exhibition of mirror works and drawings by Farmanfarmaian (b. Qazvin, Iran, 1924) and it was also my first introduction to her work, which is just amazing. To provide some background on this accomplished artist, Monir spent formative years (1945 to 1957) working in New York, during which she met artists Milton Avery, Willem de Kooning, Joan Mitchell, Louise Nevelson, Barnett Newman, and, later, Andy Warhol, among others. She returned to Iran in 1957.

Color Sketch

Sketches

Color Sketch

There, she further developed her artistic sensibility through encounters with traditional craftsmanship, indigenous art forms such as Turkoman jewelry and clothing, coffee house paintings (a popular form of Iranian narrative paintings), and the technique of reverse-glass painting, resulting in a period of artistic discovery that culminated in commissions in Iran and exhibitions in Europe and the United States.

Green Mirror Detail

Mirror Detail (Above) and Study (Below)

Mirror Sketch

The Islamic Revolution in 1979 marked the beginning of Monir’s 26-year exile in New York, during which she focused on drawing, collage, commissions, and carpet and textile design. In 2004, when she finally returned to Iran, she reestablished her studio there and resumed working with some of the same craftsmen she had collaborated with in the 1970s.

Two Sketches

Orange Faceted Mirror

Triangular Wall Mirror

Square Wall Mirror

The exhibit includes plaster and mirror reliefs, large-scale mirror sculptures the artist refers to as “geometric families,” and works on paper, revealing the central role drawing has played in Monir’s practice and focusing on a sculptural and graphic oeuvre developed over more than 40 years (many examples of which have not been displayed publicly since the 1970s).

Monir and Sculptures
Monir with her Mirror Ball Sculptures, Seen Below

Mirror Balls

This body of work is characterized by a merging of visual and spatial experience, coupled with the aesthetic traditions of Islamic architecture and decoration. Her use of geometry as form allows for, in the artist’s words, “infinite possibility.”

7 Sided Mirror
Mirror Cube Sculpture

Monir Shahroudy Farmanfarmaian: Infinite Possibility. Mirror Works and Drawings 1974–2014 will be on Exhibit Through June 3rd, 2015 at the Guggenheim Museum, Located at 1071 Fifth Avenue (at 89th Street) in New York City.

Mirror Sculpure Cluster

The Great Wave

The Great Wave
Photo By Gail

Wow, how often do you get to see such a great and globally famous work of art? Well, if you’re me it happens all the time. But maybe you are not so lucky, so The Gig brings famous art to your face, for free! You’re welcome! Under the Wave of Kanagawa, also known as The Great Wave, by Japanese artist Katsushika Hokusai (1760 – 1849) comes from the series Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji (Fugaku sanjurokkei).

The breathtaking composition of this woodblock print, said to have inspired Debussy’s La Mer (The Sea) and Rilke’s Der Berg (The Mountain), ensures its reputation as an icon of the art world. Hokusai cleverly played with perspective to make Japan’s grandest mountain appear as a small and triangular mound within the hollow of the cresting wave. The artist became famous for his landscapes, created using a palette of indigo and imported Prussian blue

The Great Wave is Part of the Exhibit Discovering Japanese Art: American Collectors and The Met, Galleries 223-232, Second Floor, at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in NYC.

Sacred Heart

Sacre Coeur
Photo By Gail

What I like most about this sculpture by Polish-born artist Piotr Uklanski (b. 1968), is the visceral response it elicits, because it does look something like what a real, human heart might, if it was covered with thick layers of dripping encaustic. Untitled (Sacre Coeur), 2015 (Resin on patinated metal stand) is currently part of larger, mostly photographic exhibit by the artist that you can see at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, on Fifth Avenue in NYC.

Photos from Mark Kostabi’s Jazz Art Brunch!

Two Kostabi Paintings
Two Works by Mark Kostabi (All Photos By Gail)

If I could name only one person whom I’ve most enjoyed meeting and getting to know since I started writing about the New York City contemporary art scene, it would be Mark Kostabi. Mark is not only an extraordinarily talented artist and musician, but he’s also one of the nicest and most generous people I can name. On a day that is currently also memorable for being the day after the warmest day of the year so far, Mark hosted a wildly fun Jazz Art Brunch at the Dillon Gallery in Chelsea, where everybody listened to awesome live music, shared their art, ate, drank and had a great time! It was an ideal opportunity to meet up and hang out with friends that you normally only get to see on FaceBook!

Paul with Art
Mark’s Brother, Musician and Artist Paul Kostabi Poses with his Signature Creation, “Sparkl”

Dillon Gallery Room Shot
Paul and Mark Kostabi Prep for the Show

Part of the inspiration for the event was to give Mark and his band the chance to warm up in front of a live audience prior to their upcoming set at the release party for their CD, Kostabeat, held at the Cutting Room a few days later. Here are a few of our favorite photos from the day!

Brunch Buffet

Check out this delicious Brunch Buffet (courtesy of Sullivan Street Bakery) featuring all of my favorite carbs!

Maven Cocktails Red

At the brunch we were also introduced to a tasty beverage, Maven Cocktails, which is a blend of premium wine infused with top shelf vodka – my two favorite beverages of choice! Maven tastes amazing and comes in a lovely resealable glass bottle – classy! I was very partial to the Pinot Noir blend but white wine fans can also enjoy a Chardonnay variety! Maven Cocktails, FTW!

Mark and Paul Art
Art By Mark Kostabi and Paul Kostabi

Kostabeat Band
L to R Paul Kostabi, Keith LeBlanc, Paul Nowinski, Mollie Israel, Tony Esposito, Mark Kostabi

In this photo, the band performs the sublime “Spoleto Dream” from Kostabeat, which is an excellent album.

Band with Paul Nowinski

Paul Nowinski also plays with Keith Richards and he is a phenomenal bass player!

Mollie Israel

Here’s better photo of Mollie, a lovely and talented lady!

Tony Esposito

The multi-talented Tony Esposito is an accomplished percussionist, arranger, composer and producer who is Mark’s creative partner in the Kostabeat experience.

Mark Kostabi

Always the gracious host, Mark invited several guest musicians to sit in with the band or perform solo.

Scott Putesky

Multi-instrumentalist Scott Putesky performed a compelling ballad arrangement of The Pixes’ “Wave Of Mutilation,” which is one of my favorites. Scott is perhaps best known in Pop Culture Legend as Daisy Berkowitz, former guitarist for the classic, Portrait of an American Family-era of Marilyn Manson — a band that was certainly a force to be reckoned with in its prime.

Art by Scott Putesky

Scott is also a fine artist who creates intriguing modern abstracts, such as the work above. Fascinating.

Paul Kostabi and Drummer

I’m not sure who this drummer is, but he was just adorable, and a serious badass on the kit!

Thanks again to Mark Kostabi and his super cool assistant, Heidi Follin, for making it a great day for everyone!

David Shrigley at Anton Kern Gallery

Sorry We Bombed You
All Art By David Shrigley. All Photos By Gail

Do you love the art of humorist /painter David Shrigley? I sure do. Confession: I have a little crush on him. He is amazing, and I worship his art. Anton Kern Gallery is currently hosting a show of new paintings by David Shrigley, the opening reception of which Geoffrey and I excitedly I attended on Thursday, April 16th. I recommend you go see this show while you can.

Gallery Shot

First, I want to show you what the gallery looked like with people in it, so you can see how the works are hung and get an idea of why all of my photos had to be cropped at weird angles. Because I am not 15 feet tall. In case you are not familiar with why David Shrigley completely rules, here is some background on his deal, which I cut and pasted from his Wikipedia entry.

Eat The Bugs

David Shrigley is best known for his mordantly humorous cartoons released in softcover books or postcard packs. He finds humor in flat depictions of the inconsequential, the unavailing, and the bizarre, although he is far fonder of violent or otherwise disquieting subject matter.

Everything I Do is Right

His work has two of the characteristics often encountered in Outsider Art: an odd viewpoint and, in some of his work, a deliberately limited technique. His freehand line is often weak (which jars with his frequent use of a ruler), his forms are often very crude, and annotations in his drawings are poorly executed and frequently contain crossings-out.

Six Shrigley's

In authentic outsider art, the artist has no choice but to produce work in his or her own way, even if that work is unconventional in content and inept in execution. In contrast, it is likely that Shrigley has chosen his style and range of subject matter for comic effect.

I am a Sign Writer

Two Sides It Will Fade

Subtractor

In addition to the 78 drawings on display, the exhibit includes two sculptures, one of which is this Subtractor; a calculator with limited function keys.

Opening Hours

What the Hell Are You Doing

They sell this book at the gallery. Just thinking about opening its pages makes me squeal.

Autograph

David was present at the opening party and he is very easy to spot because he is about 6’5″ at least and also very, very cute. I had brought with me this cartoon of his that I love, which says “No Speed Limit Anymore Go As Fast As You Want Like in Germany” and I asked him if he would sign it, so he signed it “in German.” I love him.

New Works By David Shrigley will be on Exhibit Through May 23rd, 2015 at Anton Kern Gallery, Located at 532 West 20th Street, in the Chelsea Gallery District.

David Shrigley Signage

David Shrigley

You Will Get Dirty