It was a dark and stormy afternoon when I first spotted this unique piece of sculpture bolted to a street sign on East 13th Street (near Ave A). I went in for a closer look:
I’ve been fortunate to visit the Metropolitan Museum of Art probably half a dozen times since it reopened last July, post-Covid lockdown, but the building’s roof garden only just reopened in April, for the debut of its latest site-specific commission. As Long As The Sun Lasts, by Philadelphia-based artist Alex Da Corte, is a whimsical mash up of Sesame Street and the works of Alexander Calder that could light up the rooftop even on the cloudiest day.
Symbols of speed and good fortune, Dolphins swim down the sides of this ocean-colored vase (1866–70s) from Salviati & Co. John Ruskin’s Stones of Venice created a wave of enthusiasm for the lost art of cristallo. Published from 1851 to 1853, Ruskin’s book proved a stroke of good luck for Venetians seeking to revive old glassblowing techniques.
Photographed at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in NYC.
This linoleum cut print, Speed Trial (1932), was inspired by Bluebird, a race car that reached a velocity of 246 miles per hour at Daytona Beach, Florida in 1932, breaking the land-speed record. Artist Cyril Edward Power (1872 – 1951) used rhythmic, repetitive curves to conjure the rushing motion of the aerodynamic vehicle. He printed the image using three layers of color: light blue, dark blue, and green. He stipulated that the dark blue should be printed “dark on bonnet, paling to tail” — a graded passage that emphasizes the engine, at the front of the car, as the source of its power.
Photographed in the Museum of Modern Art in NYC.
This amazing painting featuring a group of seven of the most well-known Fast Food Mascots at a funeral was spotted by me at an arts and crafts street fair in Chicago. They are clearly serving as pallbearers and you can see that the coffin says “Monsanto,” the notorious chemical company. But, what does it all mean? The painting is clearly mounted in an up-cycled window frame, and the rows of towering palm trees in the background indicates that the location is southern California. I neglected to note the artist’s name, so if anyone has a clue as to who painted this, and what it is all about, please leave that information in the comments! Thank you, Drive Through!
By the 20th century, wool suits and coats were indispensable, practical elements of fashionable daywear for women. Double-faced wool, used here by designer Mila Schön for her Blue Coat (1968) is woven almost as two separate textiles, joined by a set of interwoven yarns, creating a thick, structural, spongy fabric.
The textile’s density supports this A-line silhouette, while the wool’s pliability eases the inset of Pop Art circles. The hems were self-finished by opening the layers and stitching the edges to the inside.
Photographed as Part of the Exhibit, Fabric in Fashion, on View Through May 4th, 2019 at The Museum at FIT in Manhattan.
Adult Contemporary Electronica: Yes, it Exists. This week’s Video Clip comes from Westerman, an artist who’s flown under my radar until the link to his latest single, “Outside Sublime,” arrived in my email box. Lucky me, lucky you!
With a penchant for creating songs that explore and interrogate the nature of personal connection, Westerman’s new visual is a soothing, ethereal look at the fantasy world one escapes to when opening up to another person. Aurally, “Outside Sublime” is not just easy listening, it’s completely effortless. This is the soothing break your mind needs after a long weekend spent holiday shopping and hanging out with your family, trust me.
Director Beatrix Blaise shared a creative insight on how the video for “Outside Sublime” came together: “When I first heard it, I instantly imagined glistening watery scenes, fireflies and some sense of harmonious escape. Out of that came a kind of visceral world, where each thing in it was trying to mirror a human softness and duality.”
“Outside Sublime” can be found on Westerman’s just-released Ark EP, out now on Blue Flowers. Enjoy!