Spotted at Context Art Fair at the Javits Center in NYC!
Laying in the bathtub one day, Jasper Johns contemplated what he described as a series of images that ran “through my head without any connectedness that I could see.” Racing Thoughts (1983) contains elements of this scene, such as the hanging khaki pants and running faucet. It also features the subjects of John’s musings, including a puzzle-portrait of his longtime dealer, Leo Castelli, a pot by ceramicist George Ohr, a lithograph by Barnett Newman, and reproduction of the Mona Lisa — all influences on John’s artistic development.
By arranging these images in this way, seemingly affixed to the faux-wood-grain background with trompe l’oeil tape, thumbtacks and a protruding nail, he links them to his career-long preoccupation with illusionism and ambiguity. Disparate though the composition’s elements may be, they are united by a complex web of art historical and personal associations that conjure an image of the artist himself.
Photographed in the Whitney Museum in NYC.
Hey remember back in the spring of 2013, when Jeff Koons launched his magnificent Gazing Ball series? I sure do. Gazing Ball was a collection of stark white Greco-Roman statuary, augmented by assorted replicas of common objects such as a Mail Box or Snowman, each of which was enhanced with a bright blue mirrored globe, also known as a Gazing Ball. Trust me: it was Rad.
So, Gazing Ball is a Thing now. Koons revisited the concept when he created the artwork for Lady Gaga’s 2014 CD, ArtPop, and now he’s done it again with a massive show at Gagosian Gallery in Chelsea appropriately titled Gazing Ball Paintings.
As the title implies, Gazing Ball Paintings are Koons’ copies of works by Famous Masters with a Gazing Ball attached to the front of each canvas.
As much as I am inclined to suggest that Koons “phoned it in” for this series, that is not to say that I didn’t totally love the work.
Because, just as the crappiest attraction at Disneyland is still lots of fun, Jeff Koons is Jeff Koons. He could go full on Yoko Ono and I would still go see the show.
I should probably mention that photography using a “Professional Camera” — which is what the Gagosian staff call a point-and-shoot camera — is not allowed. You can only take photos of the art using a Smart Phone or, I am guessing, an iPad. Lame City.
Up Next: Gazing Ball with Food.
Jeff Koons Gazing Ball Paintings will be on Exhibit Through December 23rd, 2015 at Gagosian Gallery, Located at 522 West 21st Street in the Chelsea Gallery District. Jeff Koons!
The idea of “wearable art” in the realm of modern design is fascinating me to, so I was very excited to attend an opening reception last week for the American Jewelry Design Council (AJDC)’s exhibit at Forbes Galleries showcasing 25 years of outstanding jewelry design. The exhibition, Variations on a Theme: 25 Years of Design from the AJDC, will dazzle museum visitors with one-of-a-kind works from over 40 Designers who are AJDC members.
Annually, the AJDC and goldeneaglecoin.com asks each of its members to create a design project, interpreting a single concept or theme; the final product is a collection of unique jewelry pieces joined by a solitary concept. Past themes include simple conceptual elements such as Water, Spiral, Ice, Pyramid, Wheel and Flight imagined into breathtaking masterpieces made of precious metals, gemstones and unexpected materials. On view in this exhibit at Forbes jewelry gallery is a selection of works from various annual AJDC Design Projects from the very first theme, in 1996 to the most recent, in 2013. Each thematic collection is displayed beautifully in a separate glass vitrine.
“The jewelry pieces shown at the Forbes exhibition have been created over time for the sole purpose of exhibiting creativity, originality and excellence in design,” says Barbara Heinrich, President of the AJDC. “They are purposely noncommercial but rather inspirational in nature, created by some of the foremost American jewelry designers alive. Due to the unique nature and concept of the show, it is sure to excite and inspire its audience.”
Since its establishment in 1988, the AJDC has worked to educate and promote the awareness of jewelry as an art form. Members of the American Jewelry Design Council are dedicated to elevating the caliber of jewelry design through educational activities and to challenging professional jewelry designers worldwide to actualize their creative potential. This year’s theme “Wave” delivered awe inspiring works of art which were debuted at the JCK Jewelry Show in Las Vegas this past June.
Artists exhibiting in Variations on a Theme: 25 Years of Design from the AJDC include:
|Sandy BakerJane Bohan
|Paul KleckaSteven Kretchmer
Jennifer Rabe Morin
Although the gallery is not that large, the exhibit is laid out in a way that makes the most of the small space. These pieces are each unique and it’s fun to look at them, compare each to the other contributions to that shared theme and see what everyone came up with. Here are a few of my favorite pieces from the show:
Variations on a Theme is a must-see exhibit for jewelry lovers and anyone interested in Modern Design. I really enjoyed it!
Variations on a Theme: 25 Years of Design from the AJDC Will be on Exhibit Through February 22, 2014 at Forbes Galleries, Located 62 Fifth Avenue (at 12th Street), New York City. Hours are Tuesday to Saturday, 10:00 AM – 4:00 PM.
In the span of three short years, Lawyer-turned-LEGO® Brick artist Nathan Sawaya has gone from having New York’s first solo exhibition comprised entirely of LEGO bricks to unveiling the world’s biggest and most elaborate display of LEGO art, ever. You can see Sawaya’s massive and mind blowing exhibit, The Art of The Brick, now through January 5th, 2014 at the Discovery Center Museum in Times Square.
I was lucky to be invited to a cocktail party and preview of the exhibit last week, a couple of days before the show officially opened on June 14th, and it was so nice to have a good amount to time to stroll through this nine gallery exhibit, taking tons of photos and not having to contend with too much of a crowd. What a treat! Here’s little preview of what you’ll see in this exhibit of over 100 LEGO Brick sculptures.
The First gallery you’ll enter is called Paint By Bricks, where you’ll see both flat and 3D interpretations of famous artworks such as The Mona Lisa, American Gothic and The Scream. These LEGO ‘Paintings’ represent an entirely new frontier for Sawaya’s work and they are very cool and painstakingly detailed.
Next, you will move into The Sculpture Garden, where you’ll encounter dozens of unbelievably authentic looking versions famous sculptures including The Venus De Milo and one of the Easter Island head sculptures as well as an extensive variety of African and Indian artifacts, The Sphinx and The Greek Parthenon. There’s also a fun example of a very famous modern art sculpture seen a few photos below.
It’s interesting how these LEGO artworks create a type of optical illusion, where, if you look at them and squint a bit, they look remarkably like the originals! Just try it for yourself!
Up next is The Artist’s Studio.
In the Metamorphosis gallery, I noticed several sculptures that I had seen previously at Sawaya’s exhibits at the Agora Gallery in Chelsea. They were nevertheless transformed by being placed in this alternate setting, as is the case with Swimmer, above.
The piece above, showing a man ripping open his torso to reveal LEGO Brick organs, is perhaps Sawaya’s best known and most iconic sculpture.
The Human Condition is a fun gallery. I had seen a few of these pieces in previous exhibits as well.
You can only see that this “crowd” of tiny figures incorporates the image of human eye if you squat down to view it at eye level. Clever!
The mood, literally, turns a bit darker and more existential in a gallery called Through the Darkness.
It wasn’t easy to get good shots in this room due the darkness and the fact that a flash ruins the effect of the dim lighting on the sculptures. Small kids might be a little scared in this room if they afraid of the dark, so be sure to hold their hands.
Long, Long Ago has just one sculpture, a room-length Dinosaur skeleton! Kids will love it!
City of Dreams pays homage to Nathan’s adopted hometown of New York City. Everyone seemed to want to pose for photos in this exhibit’s penultimate gallery.
In the final gallery of the exhibit, It Starts with One Brick, you’ll see contributed works from kids and local artists as well as a few additional LEGO portraits by Nathan.
LEGO Portrait of Andy Warhol
Finally, a giant LEGO hand holds individual Yellow LEGO Brick which visitors can write their names on in order to be an official participant the exhibit!
Nathan Sawaya’s The Art of the Brick runs until January 5th of next year, so you have six entire months to see it, but tickets are selling out so don’t wait too long to schedule your visit! It is a fun time for the entire family and despite the size of the exhibit you can walk it leisurely in an hour.
Ticket prices are: $20.50 for Adults, $17.50 for Seniors 65+ and $15.50 for Children (4-12 yrs). Visit Discovery TSX Dot Com to purchase timed entry tickets and for more information. Discovery Times Square is located at 226 W 44th Street (Between 7th and 8th Avenues), New York, NY 10036. Exhibit Hours Are:
Sunday – Thursday: 10:00 AM – 8:00 PM, Friday – Saturday: 10:00 AM – 9:00 PM. Final Entry to the Exhibit is 1 Hour Prior To Closing.