Just over a week ago, the music world lost Singer, Songwriter, Producer and member of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, Lou Reed. In honor of his life, fine art photography archive site, Rock Paper Photo has released an online dedicated gallery, including 2 never before seen Andrew Kent images of Lou, that can be viewed at This Link. Fans will not want to miss it.
The Los Angeles-based street artist Thierry Guetta, better known as Mr Brainwash, has lost a copyright case involving a 1977 photograph of the punk rock musician Sid Vicious shot by the British photographer Dennis Morris. Guetta had claimed that the seven works he created using Morris’s black and white photograph, including one mural and one collage made of broken vinyl records, were sufficiently altered to be protected by the fair use defence, which allows for the use of copyrighted material for commentary, criticism and parody.
The federal judge rejected Guetta’s claim, saying that “most of [the] defendant’s works add certain new elements, but the overall effect of each is not transformative.” The judge also opposed the argument that “appropriation art per se” should be protected by fair use. As we went to press, the terms of the settlement, including unspecified damages, were being determined.
In 2011 Guetta lost a copyright case to Glen Friedman over his use of Friedman’s photograph of the rap group Run DMC, while last year the estate of the photographer Jim Marshall sued Guetta and Google for the unauthorised use of Marshall’s photographs of musicians. This case has not yet been decided and is due to go to trial in July.
It’s been a true pleasure to discover the art and follow the career of Lego Brick artist Nathan Sawaya over the past few years. I’ve enjoyed Nathan’s Brick by Brick and Red exhibits at the Agora Gallery in Chelsea, and now he has collaborated with photographer Dean West for In Pieces — something completely different indeed!
Geoffrey and I attended a private opening reception for In Pieces on Thursday, February 28th and were blown away by this series of minimalist tableau photographs by Dean West, which digitally incorporate Sawaya’s playful but realistic Lego sculptures. Please enjoy my photographs from the exhibit accompanied by narrative from the show’s official press release.
The project is a series of tableau compositions based on ideas about nature, culture, society and, more specifically, identity. Identity as a cultural creation has been heavily commercialized and manipulated, and we prominently portray this through a highly stylized representation of contemporary life. The integration of Sawaya’s unique sculpture is key to the series’ narrative and aesthetic.
The images have been constructed using modern photography techniques, combined with specially sculpted LEGO® objects placed within the scenes. The combination not only builds on and accentuates the images’ aesthetic, but also compels the viewer to deconstruct each tableau, thereby exposing elements of the construction of cultural identity itself.
Isolated individuals stand in recognizable but chillingly empty minimalist scenes with geometrical design, derived from common features of the American landscape. Their averted eyes gaze into nothingness, and a strange feeling of aloofness and displacement reverberates. Unique talent has been incorporated into the tableaux, with elongated limbs, referencing society’s idealized bodies.
A dress made of LEGO bricks looks more like pixels breaking off into the blowing wind. Juxtaposed against a desolate, American realist environment, the images are appealing, yet eerily ambiguous- a very engaging and unforgettable effect.
Referencing the aesthetic of the American Postcard in both the style and content- the series has been color graded with pastels such as warm yellows and pale blues. The imagery, from a distance, appears entirely photographic. However, as the viewer begins to digest the images, the series reveals its brick by brick fabricated construction. The [layered] process also represents the direct processes involved with digital photography today. Clear references to pixilation and technology are apparent through stylized manipulation and digital enhancements.
In Pieces by Nathan Sawaya and Dean West will be on Exhibit at Avant Gallery (at the Openhouse Gallery), Located at 201 Mulberry Street (Between Kenmare and Spring) through March 17th, 2013. The exhibition will be open daily from 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM.
Photographer and renowned antique dealer, Roger Prigent, who snapped the infamous cover of 1971′s Love it to Death, the breakthrough third album by the band Alice Cooper, has passed away at the age of 89.
Primarily known for his fashion photography, Prigent became a prominent Manhattan antiques dealer when his eyesight began to fail three decades ago. Prigent died in New York City on Saturday, December 15th, 2012 after suffering a recent stroke that left him in a coma. Read more about Roger Prigent’s life and career at This Link.
Portraits of husband and wife Lou Reed and Laurie Anderson by American Painter & Photographer Chuck Close. Photos By Gail.
Every picture tells a story. During his career, Photographer Barrie Wentzell collected an endless cache of unheard stories from and about many of rock’s greatest legends that would blow your head right off. From 1965 to 1975 – certainly one of the (if not the) most vibrant and fertile decades for Rock & Roll music and culture — Wentzell shot both live performance and candid, intimate photographs of everyone who was anyone: from Jimi Hendrix and The Beatles to The Kinks and Led Zeppelin for the UK weekly music rag, Melody Maker.
His pay was about 20 pounds per week, but Wentzell will tell you even today that his dream gig during the Golden Age of Rock & Roll was never about the money; it was about the experiences he had with these artists.
Right now, you can view a small portion of Wentzell’s extensive and wildly impressive career legacy at the Morrison Hotel Gallery in the comprehensively entitled exhibit, Melody Maker: The Best Years, 1965-1975, The Photography of Barrie Wentzell. Most of these pictures have never been published or viewed by the public. In fact, Wentzell admitted that, prior to staging the exhibit, he’d not viewed the majority of these photos since he first took them. And that is just shame, because his pictures are transcendent.
I have seen many, many great rock photography exhibits and I must say that this is the first one where the words “Fine Art Rock Photography” – which is what Morrison Hotel Gallery is known for – really resonated with me when experiencing Barrie Wentzell’s photos. The oddest reaction I had was while silently gazing at a black and white photo of Elton John and Bernie Taupin, taken while both were still in their early 20s. They just looked so young and unjaded, with their entire lives and careers ahead of them. I thought about the first Elton John songs I ever heard, like “Mona Lisa’s and Mad Hatters,” “Mad Man Across the Water” and “Sixty Years On.” And unexpected tears of deep nostalgia welled up in my eyes. It was embarrassing to dork out in public like that, but it was also such an amazing feeling to be so fully transported back to a time when Rock Stars meant everything to me. Barrie Wentzell’s work is truly as magical as the music of that era.
Read more about Barrie Wentzell, and view some of the photos in this do-not-miss show, at This Link.
Morrison Hotel Gallery is Located at 116 Prince Street (Loft) and 124 Prince Street (Store Front) in NYC’s Greenwich Village.
This Photo of Led Zeppelin In Concert Fully Captures the Energy of the Performance in a Static Medium. Amazing.
See the Photo that Made Me Cry After the Jump!
NOTE: Sadly, L’asso EV Has Closed as of July 2013
Against trend, we often side with the belief that most foods labeled “Healthy” might be significantly less tasty than their less healthy counterparts – case in point: Pizza. So, we had a pretty serious Come to Jesus Moment this week while dining for the first time at L’asso EV, a newcomer to the East Village, boasting a dedication to the organic, gluten free culinary approach, that manages to get just about everything right.
We were initially tempted to visit L’Asso with the promise of being served the “Best Pizza In NYC” (a claim we have heard many times before). And while we admit that L’asso EV’s pizza is insane, it is really a co-star amid an ensemble cast (menu) of tasty treats that will likely convert you to a regular customer.
With a smaller, original location at 192 Mott Street (at Kenmare), L’asso EV (Italian Translation : The Ace , with EV signifying the East Village) opened with an expanded menu at 107 First Avenue about 6 months ago. They are proud of their pizza – and rightly so – but L’Asso offers a varied menu featuring fresh, unique salads, appetizers, pasta and desserts that you won’t find on any other area menu. Aside from the delicious food, the space is totally cool.
Striking a fine balance of hip and classy, the restaurant is a perfect addition to this wildly popular and centrally located neighborhood which attracts both foodies and the artistically inclined crowd. Before we even get to the food, the interior is immediately inviting and comfy. L’asso EV’s appealing decor – a mix of clean chic and farmhouse kitsch – is enhanced by an impressive collection of art adorning its walls.
From a collection of Ashley Macknica photographs known as the Pizza is My Lover series, to a colorful pyramid mural painted directly on the wall by local street artist Dima Drjuchin, to an eclectic collection of tiny canvases scattered across the walls of the large back room (great for groups), there are almost as many beautiful things on view at L’asso as there are delicious things to eat. Innovative Chefs Jackie Gibson and Joseph Lee make sure of that.
Amid an enticing selection of big salads, we chose to start our meal with the Insalata Fresca ($15.00), made with cucumber, corn, tomato, cilantro, radish and salty, flavorful caciocavallo cheese dressed lightly with olive oil, lemon juice and soy sauce. It looked as good as it tasted!
The D.O.C. Bufalina Pizza appetizer was presented on a house-made bagel topped with Buffalo Mozzarella, San Marzano Tomatos and Extra Virgin Olive Oil ($6.00)
A major highlight of the evening came early (and unexpectedly) in the form of the Fried Tomato Appetizer ($14.00), which was recommended to us by our charming server/host, Paul AKA Love Jungle This is a satisfying plate of three, thick-cut slabs of Red (not green!) Tomato, well coated in a light, seasoned breadcrumb mix and expertly pan fried, drizzled with balsamic and served topped with huge ball of fresh mozzarella. OMG! Not only are the sweet, ripe tomatoes beyond delicious on their own, but the mozzarella is so soft, milky and fresh, this dish is nearly as luscious and decadent as a dessert.
A Trio of Eda’s Meat Balls ($11.00) – a mix of veal, beef and pork –arrived at our table fresh from the oven, baked in a ramekin with sauce and more Buffalo Ricotta. The meatballs are huge, flavorful, juicy, tender and highly recommended!
Gnocchi can be a fickle mistress, but L’asso’s Gnocchi Portofina ($13.00) are among of the lightest and fluffiest Gnocchi we have tasted. Served in a light tomato sauce with homemade ricotta, we would ask for an additional dollop of the accompanying delicious cheese when ordering these again.
L’asso Mussels (cooked with garlic, white wine and pancetta, $14.00) are served with generous helping of crispy, fresh herb-tossed French Fries accompanied by a fresh and creamy Pesto Aioli for dipping.
Finally, it was time for us to get down to the business of eating pizza, and our attentive wait staff created a special, off-menu (but soon to be on menu), item just for us: a Muffaletta Pizza, which they cheekily call The Big Muff ($18.00)! This round pie is based on the famous New Orleans sandwich, being topped with Green Olive salad and both mortadella and sopresatta before being buried in cheese. This pizza is so rich and loaded with toppings and yet the suportive crust stays crisp and light. A small pie can easily be shared between two people, with a shared salad, and it is doubtful you would leave hungry. We will concur that L’asso EV deserves to lay claim to serving the “Best Pizza in the East Village.” We will be back for more.
L’asso EV is Located at 107 First Avenue, Between 6th and 7th Streets in NYC’s East Village. Phone 212-837-2048 to make a reservation and visit their awesome website to find out about special nights and events.
Miss May from Pizza is My Lover Series
The Morrison Hotel Gallery is proud to present the premiere exhibition of Kurt Cobain By Jesse Frohman in conjunction with the 18th anniversary of Cobain’s passing on April 5, 1994. The exhibit will be open to the public from April 6th through April 22nd at the 124 Prince Street gallery.
These iconic images of Kurt Cobain in his final days are a testament to Grunge and pop culture in the ’90s, and the worlds of art, fashion, music and celebrity collide in this distinguished portrait series. These are some of the most sought after pictures of Cobain and The Morrison Hotel Gallery is thrilled to present them to the public in this unique exhibition.
Jesse Frohman’s insightful portrait of an idol transcends the nature of celebrity photography. The pictures are as humanizing as they are glorifying. Cobain appears as a goofily provocative iconoclast, with his vintage air force cap, Jackie O. sunglasses and leopard jacket, while revealing a more depressing side of the life of a great artist dependent on drugs. Like Jim Morrison, Jimi Hendrix and Janis Joplin, Kurt Cobain died both at an early age and at the pinnacle of his career. These photographs, captured near the time of his death, provide a fascinating insight into the end of the life of a rock star.
Story Continues After the Jump!
Photographer Bob Carey has been taking photos of himself posed at varied and beautiful locations around the globe, clothed only in a Pink Tutu, since 2003. Carey is now selling signed, limited edition prints of these photographs and taking pre-orders for a book collection of the Pink Tutu Photos — entitled Ballerina — to be published this fall, with all proceeds going to organizations that fight breast cancer (Carey’s wife Linda is survivor). You can read the back story on The Tutu Project, see more of Bob’s awesome photos and get purchasing information at The Tutu Project.
Thanks to Neatorama for The Tip!