Tag Archive | Coca Cola

Eugenio Merino’s Always Shameless at UNIX Gallery

Row of Coke Cases
All Photos By Gail

If you like Coca Cola and World Politics and have a twisted sense of humor, then UNIX Gallery in Chelsea is currently hosting an exhibit you will enjoy. Always Shameless, an exhibition of new work by Spanish artist Eugenio Merino is instantly polarizing for its depiction of life-sized Political Leaders including Hugo Chavez, Kim Jong Il, Vladimir Putin and George W. Bush displayed in Coca Cola Refrigerator Coffins. Surely, this visual alone will inspire hours of lively discourse.

Walls at either end of the the Coca Cola Case Display are mirrored, creating an infinity effect and indicating that the line of corrupt leadership “goes on forever,” according to Gallery owner Alex Cesaria, whom I spoke to at the opening reception this past Thursday. The figures of each well known leader (most now deceased but some still living) are all astoundingly lifelike (although a few have noticeably over-sized heads, take that however you want).

Always Franco
Always Franco

According to the exhibit’s press release, Always Shameless is the culmination of a project Merino began in 2011 with Always Franco, a life sized sculpture of uniformed Spanish dictator Francisco Franco preserved in a Coca Cola refrigerator. The Fundación Nacional Francisco Franco, an organization dedicated to preserving Franco’s legacy, quickly sued the artist over the sculpture as well as for a second sculpture the artist created of the dictator. Merino went to trial twice to defend his freedom of speech and won both cases. As an aside, I can’t help but recall the long-running punch line on early seasons of Saturday Night Live’s Weekend Update News segment, reporting that “Generalissimo Francisco Franco is Still Dead.” If you are too young to remember that, it doesn’t matter.

Hugo Chavez
Always Chavez

Putin Close Up
Always Putin Detail

Despite the legal setbacks, the artist has continued his series of sculptures of political figures for the exhibition. The title of the show, Always Shameless is a play on the 1993 Coca Cola slogan “Always.” Merging the political nature of the artist’s sculptures with the branding of a universally recognized product brings these ultimately dark and poignant works into the more accessible forum of popular culture.

Always Mao
Always Mao

Merino’s work undoubtedly reflects his struggle as a politically active and controversial artist. Speaking directly to the issues of manipulation and control throughout the 21st century, his works challenge the artistic and social limits his subjects have set upon their respective societies. Their legacies have been preserved simply through our participation in keeping their reigns alive. Jonathan Jones of The Guardian noted, “it seems incredible that General Franco is still oppressing artists in Spain from beyond the grave.”

Punch a Poitician

Punch Putin
Vladimir Putin Punching Bag, Very Timely!

As a terrific kick off to the summer, Always Shameless is a Do Not Miss Exhibit!

Eugenio Merino’s Always Shameless will be on Exhibit Through July 12th, 2014 at UNIX Gallery, Located at 532 W 24th Street in the Chelsea Gallery District.

Gallery and Exhibit Signage

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Right Place, Right Time by Kevin Cyr

Kevin Cyr Coca Cola Delivery Truck
All Photos By Gail. Click on Any Image to Enlarge.

If you live in any urban area such as New York City, you’ve seen trucks lie these parked on the streets, covered in graffiti and looking rather derelict. There’s no denying that they are part of the landscape for a city dweller. I like them.

Kevin Cyr Bonks Delivery Van

One of the current exhibits at Jonathan LeVine Gallery is Kevin Cyr’s  Right Place, Right Time, which includes a larege collections of new oil paintings on panels that range in of sizes from about 8 x 10 Inches to several fee across. These realist paintings depict vehicles seen by Cyr on the streets of Berlin, Brussels and Paris. The Right Place, Right Time series acts as a counterpart to In Praise of Rust, Cyr’s 2012 exhibition, in which he documented old vehicles seen on the streets of New York City — primarily vans and commercial delivery trucks covered in graffiti, rust, dents and other imperfections.

Kevin Cyr 4 Trucks

According to the exhibit’s Press Release, “Transportation, travel and exploration — ongoing themes throughout Cyr’s body of work — are particularly prevalent here, as the artist traveled abroad to explore the streets of foreign cities in his research for new subjects to capture. Cyr’s fascination with these vans and trucks is based around the idea that they symbolize a place and an ethos. He finds himself discovering the character of each city he visits through its vehicles.”

Kevin Cyr Orange Truck

Kevin Cyr Toro Van

Kevin Cyr Toro Truck Detail
Taped Up Side Window Detail from Painting Above! Authentic!

Funnily enough, when we left the opening reception this past Saturday, a truck not unlike the ones immortalized in Cyr’s paintings was parked right outside on 20th Street. Art Imitates Life.

Kevin Cyr’s Right Place, Right Time will be on Exhibit through March 22, 2014 at Jonathan Levine Gallery, Located at 529 W 20th Street, 9th Floor, in the Chelsea Gallery District.

Kevin Cyr 4 Paintings

Coca Cola Drum Set

Coca Cola Drums
Image Source

This photo is pulled from an 1977 Slingerland Drum Advertisement for their custom wrap kit, where they’d make shell wraps with whatever image you wanted on them. I’m not sure if some clever drummer out there actually made a Coca Cola Kit, but the photo sure is cool!

Vintage Coca Cola Cooler Furniture

Coca Cola Cooler Furniture
Photo By Gail

The Seattle Antiques Market is a fun place to buy or just browse a huge variety of antiques, vintage goods and mid-century design items that’s located adjacent to the waterfront. I took this photo when I was in Seattle this past summer. I’d never seen furniture made from old Coca Cola coolers but I think you can tell by the look of this chair, that this is a pretty clever idea. Right behind the chair is an equally neat sofa, but it has display boxes of silver spoons resting on it, so you can’t get the full View. Add this to your list of DIY Home Design Ideas!

Robert Deyber at Martin Lawrence Galleries

Dress Code
Dress Code By Robert Deyber (All Photos By Gail)

Pop Surrealism is a genre of painting that never gets tiresome for me. Connecticut based Artist Robert Deyber paints realist-style visual renderings of clichés, euphemisms and popular sayings or phrases, to create surreal, dreamlike tableaus that really take the viewer elsewhere. I love his work.

ClubHouse
Club House

Despite his keen sense of humor and the visually absurd, Robert Deyber is a seriously skilled painter. Much like solving Rebus Puzzles, the fun in observing Deyber’s paintings is trying to deduce the title from the images on the canvas. Sometimes it’s really easy and obvious, and at other times quite confounding. You can even make a game of it with your friends!

Fire Arms
Fire Arms

Here are some of my favorites from Thursday night’s opening reception, where I had the chance to meet Robert, and he was very nice!

Lion of Coke
Lion of Coke

Think Tank
Think Tank

Baseball Bat
Baseball Bat

Chick Magnet
Chick Magnet

Martin Lawrence Galleries is located at 457 West Broadway (Between Houston and Prince) in Soho, NY.

Screw You
I’ll let you guess what this one is called.

Coke Can Purse

Coke Can Purse with Chain
It’s The Real Thing

At last! I’ve found a purse that will match These Shoes!

Coke Can Purse Features:

  • Adorable small purse looks like a Coca-Cola Can
  • Detachable chain strap and metal clasp enclosure
  • Made out of Polyurethane material
  • Size: 4-1/2″ x 2-1/2″ x 2-1/2″

Priced at only $23.99, get one before they’reall gone, at This Link!

Coke Can Purse Clasp Close Up
Clasp Detail

Coke Can Purse On Mannequin