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Modern Art Monday Presents: Francis Picabia, Idyll

Idyll Francis Picabia
Photo By Gail

The predominant hue of this sentimental postcard composition is an intense azure blue, typical of skies on the French Riviera, overlaid with bright greens, pinks, reds, yellows, whites and lines of black. The transparency of the two figures makes literal what Francis Picabia (1879 – 1953) described as the “empty” character of Cannes high society. They have no substance to speak of, their bodies merging with the surrounding landscape in a painted version of superimposition, a technique more commonly associated with avant-garde photography and film. Idyll (1925 – 27) is displayed in its original goatskin frame, built by the frame-maker and bookbinder Pierre Legrain. The frame highlights Picabia’s abiding interest in the decorative, a category often considered antithetical to “serious” art.

Photographed in the Museum of Modern Art in NYC as Part of the Exhibit, Francis Picabia: Our Heads Are Round So Our Thoughts Can Change Direction, Up Through March 19th, 2017

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Video Clip of The Week: Black Mirrors, “Funky Queen”


Oh boy, here’s a good one! This week’s Video Clip, courtesy of Belgian rockers Black Mirrors will coax you right out of any residual funk, because it is called “Funky Queen” — and it kicks ass all over the place! If Janis Joplin, Jack White, Anouk, Nirvana and Queens Of The Stone Age ever had the chance to breed, Black Mirrors might have been their very attractve spawn. Black Mirrors is Belgium’s answer to pretty much every rock band out there: fronted by the stunning vocalist Marcella Di Troia, these guys manage to gather an endless amount of influences which have been ruling the rock n’ roll universe for decades, combining them seamlessly into Black Mirrors‘ very own addictive sound.

The artfully-shot-in-black-and-white performance-based video for “Funky Queen” was filmed and edited by Van’s Ography and it perfectly showcases Di Troia’s incredible vocal chops, on-stage charisma and undeniable sass! “Funky Queen” is the title song from Black Mirrors‘ upcoming 4-song EP, due out on March 3rd, 2017 via Napalm Records! Like the band on the FaceBook at This Link! Enjoy!

Black Mirrors Marcella

Pink Thing Of The Day: Pink Flamingo Pool Statue

Flamingo Pool Statue
All Photos By Gail

Ah, California at Christmastime is a singular experience, filled with visions of kidney-shaped swimming pools and oversized Pink Flamingo statues.

Swimming Pool and Famingo

Because, why not?

Swimming Pool and Famingo

Swimming Pool and Famingo

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Horse Sculpture Made From Car Parts

Manchester by Doug Owen
All Photos By Gail

If you haven’t yet been to the Gene Autry Museum of the American West, you need to add that to your list of cool things to do when you are in the Los Angeles area, because the place is just amazing (bonus: the museum is located directly across a shared parking lot from the LA Zoo.). I had the chance to explore this history-rich landmark in December, when I was visiting family for Christmas, and I had all kinds of crazy fun.

During my visit, I took these photos of Manchester (2014); a horse sculpture made out of random car parts, created by American sculptor Doug Owen. In a career spanning four decades, Owen is an artist whose entire oeuvre consists of sculptures of horses. And whether he is using car, tractor, or motorcycle parts, Owen’s choice of medium imbues his sculptures with a touch of humor and of irony, as his horses are constructed out of the very material that ultimately replaced them.

Manchester by Doug Owen

I think his work is super cool. You can read more about Doug Owen at this website, Doug Owen Art Dot Com.

Eye On Design: Neon Desk Light (Blue) By Jochen Holz

Neon Desk Lamp
All Photos By Gail

A couple of weeks ago, we made a run by Chamber on West 23rd Street to check out their newest collection of functional, limited edition artworks and home goods. As usual, more than a few items piqued our interest. We especially like this lamp by London-based blown glass artist and designer, Jochen Holz.

Neon Desk Lamp

The Neon Desk Light is a unique, freestanding light sculpture made of free formed borosilicate glass tubing. Each is one of its kind and part of a small edition. Says Holz about this creation, “I am using much bigger tubing diameters and wall thicknesses to create shapes which couldn’t be achieved with conventional neon making.  The forms play with the light emitted by the different rare gases, the undulating tube subtly manipulates the light, softening and intensifying it in turns. There are no coatings or filaments, just the pure light radiating from within the tube. The lights have an estimated lifetime of about 30 to 40 thousand hours.”

This fun modern lamp also comes in Red. Contact the store at info@chambernyc.com for pricing.

Photographed at the Chamber Boutique on 23rd Street, West of the High Line / 10th Avenue.
Neon Desk Lamp

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Product Review: POTTYMINTS Disolvable Air Freshener!

Potty Mints Booth Display
All Photos By Gail

There is no delicate way to put this: when you share a home with other people, maintaining the quality of the bathroom “atmosphere” is an ongoing consideration. It’s easy enough to light a match or spray some room fresher into the air, but when a solution that’s both discrete and longer-lasting is desired, I’ve got just the thing for the occasional malodorous situation: POTTYMINTS.

Potty Mints Booth Display

I discovered POTTYMINTS at the recent New York Now home show, when I was trawling the aisles fro free stuff and was charmed by their attention-grabbing booth display, featuring a toilet with an extravagant bouquet of flowers extending from its bowl to the ceiling. Very impressive! I stopped to talk to POTTYMINTS representative, Matthew Grobman, whose sister and business partner Suzanna Grobman, invented the product after taking a vacation (my guess is they went to Mexico) with her then-boyfriend-now-husband.  You can read an abridged version of what I assure you is an hilarious story here.

Matthew gave me a few sample packets of POTTYMINTSto try at home and here is what happened next.

Pottymints Sample Packets

Behold, the POTTYMINTS displayed on the seat of my toilet! Please note that correct use of the POTTYMINT involves waiting until after the flush (#theafterflush)!

POTTYMINT IN HAND

After flushing, drop one POTTYMINT into the clean water and watch it go!

Effervescence

The POTTYMINT will effervesce and dissolve, leaving the air sweet smelling for, not even kidding, a few days!  POTTYMINTS are sold in assorted sizes, including a small packet perfect for traveling or just keeping in your purse or bag. All packaging embraces a minimal-yet-elegant design aesthetic — like something you would find in the bathroom at a very fancy hotel and want to take home with you! POTTYMINTS come in two very appealing fragrances: Arancia di Capri (Citrus) and La Fleur (Light Floral). These varieties are effective and impart a fresh and enduring scent without becoming cloying, as some sprays or atomizers can be.

Find out more about POTTYMINTS, and get a 10% discount on your first purchase, at This Link!

Potty Mints Product Display

Modern Art Monday Presents: Vincent Van Gogh, Mountains at Saint Remy

Mountains at Saint Remy
Photo By Gail

While recovering from a mental breakdown at a hospital in Saint-Remy, Vincent Van Gogh created this depiction of the Alpilles, a low mountain range in the southern French town. Van Gogh‘s characteristic heavy impasto and bold, broad brushstrokes activate the terrain and sky. In his letters, the artist wrote: “I rather like the ‘Entrance to a Quarry’ — I was doing it when I felt this attack coming on — because to my mind the somber greens go well with the ocher tones; there is something sad in it which is healthy, and that is why is does not bore me. Perhaps that is true of the ‘Mountain’ too. They will tell me that mountains are not like that and that there are black outlines of a finger’s width. But after all it seemed to me it expressed that passage in [Edouard] Rod’s book [Le sens de la vie, 1889] . . .  about a desolate country of somber mountains, among which are some dark goatherds’ huts where sunflowers are blooming.”

Photographed in the Thannhauser Collection Galleries at the Guggenheim Museum in NYC

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