Hey what’s up. I recently returned from a mind-blowlingly great 8-day vacation in the beautiful and exciting city of Chicago, where I had many fun adventures. One ass-kicking afternoon, we walked past this building with huge Pink Flamingos painted on its facade, and of course I stoped to snap some photos. The building turned out to be the home of a well-reviewed Cuban restaurant and club called the Flamingo Rum Club. You can read more about it at This Link, in case you happen to be in Chicago and want to check it out. I love Cuban food and this place sounds pretty cool.
Flamingo Rum Club is Located at 601 North Wells Street (Corner of West Ohio), in Chicago, IL.
If you’ve ever had to transfer from the 4 and 5 lines at 59th Street / Lexington Ave to the N/R/W or 6 trains on the upper level, then you have passed by the huge mosaic tile Coffee Cup Mural on the mezzanine level, which is part of a larger work called Blooming, by artist Elizabeth Murray.
Murray has also scattered smaller mosaic tile shoes and coffee cups through the stairwells and on the train platform walls.
Geoffrey and I went out to Coney Island equipped with a minor agenda that included eating at Wahlburgers (disappointing), attending a concert at the new amphitheater (nice venue, underwhelming artist) and visiting the new-for-2016 Coney Art Walls. We saw the Art WallsLast Summer and they were amazing! Unfortunately, when we tried to enter the space this past weekend, we were told that they were closed for a private party, and that we could pay $15 if we wanted to gain admittance to see them, and also be subjected to what sounded like the worst music ever in the universe of all time. We declined. “Come back tomorrow,” we were told, but that wasn’t going to happen when a 90-minmute subway ride is involved.
BKLYN House, Located at 9 Beaver Street, Brooklyn NY (All Photos By Gail)
Street art fans already know that the neighborhood of Bushwick, Brooklyn, with its artist-friendly rent and budding gallery scene, is also one of the hottest, most fertile areas in NYC to find amazing new street art popping up virtually everywhere you look. Appropriately, BKLYN House, an affordable new hotel, which had its soft opening in December, 2015, is providing a dynamic venue for showcasing the work of many of Brooklyn’s local artists.
Lobby of BKLYN House Features This Brooklyn-By-Neighborhood Mural By Artist DINK C
The bright, loft-style boutique hotel has 116 guest rooms, a modern and sleek industrial-style design and a collection of local street-art inspired artwork, including unique murals — one on each floor — depicting one of the unique areas of Brooklyn, which were commissioned specifically for the BKLYN Hotel.
Additionally, the walls of the hotel’s common areas, such as the breakfast room — where guests can enjoy a delicious free breakfast that is included with their room reservation — and the lounge / business center, feature many colorful paintings that pay homage to the vibrant neighborhood scene.
All art was curated by local gallerist Steven Gonzalez Marin of the Renaissance Collective, who partnered with Image Gallery to select a group of 11 artists, each assigned a neighborhood in Brooklyn that would inspire a wall-sized thematic mural. Check these out!
Welcome to Bed Stuy (Bedford Stuyvesant) by Josie’s Boy.
Bed Stuy Mural Detail
Bushwick by Mano a Mano
Bushwick Mural Detail (Biggie)
Crown Heights Mural on Post Card by Rez Shaolin
Flatbush Mural on Post Card by Yes One
Fort Greene Mural on Post Card by Mason Eve
Coney Island Mural by Ovrlnd Collective
Coney Island Mural Detail
Dumbo Mural By Phetus 88
Watch a fun video of the murals in the process of being created, including interviews with some of the artists, at This Link.
BKLYN House features comfy single and double occupancy rooms with Queen size beds, each room featuring Pillow-top Bedding, Flatscreen TV, Free High Speed Wi-Fi and In-Room Coffee Service, among other amenities.
I tried out the beds and they are super comfy.
BKLYN House is located in Bushwick, Brooklyn at 9 Beaver Street, Between Fayette and Ellery streets. The closest subway station is the J or the M Train to Flushing Avenue, and then a very short walk to the Hotel. Visit BKLYN House Hotel Dot Com for Rates, Reservations and More information!
If you haven’t been to Coney Island at least once this summer, you owe it to yourself to make the trip. Most residents of Manhattan who live, say, from midtown to the east village area, can make it from the door to the shore in under 90 minutes, depending on how the trains are running. And for half the ride, the trains run above ground, so that makes it a bit more interesting of a ride as well. Even if you are not a “Beach Person” (raises hand), and the rides at Luna Park make you barf (keeps hand raised) there is so much to see and do at Coney Island that all you need to have is an adventurous spirit, and maybe some sunblock.
Art Wall By Kenny Scharf
If you are a street art lover, you will absolute want to plan a visit to see the Coney Art Walls, a public art project conceived by art dealer and curator Jeffrey Deitch, which is going to be up until Halloween. Coney Art Walls features more than 25 colorful murals created by some of the most well-known street artists in the world. We spotted many of our favorites artists including How & Nosm, Roa, Buff Monster, Kenny Scharf and Ron English, as well as a selection of artists who are still up-and-coming. It’s a great mix of talent.
Art Wall By Ron English
The walls are interspersed with re-purposed cargo containers to create a pop-up truck food village, with food sold by vendors organized by Smorgasburg. Concerts are also held in the space.
Art Wall By Sheryo
Belgian artist Roa gets two adjoining walls to create a juxtaposed Rat and Rat Skeleton.
Art Wall By Maya Hayuk
Art Wall By Shepard Fairey
Art Wall By Buff Monster
Coney Art Walls are located at 1320 Bowery Street right behind the original Nathan’s on Surf Avenue.
Mike Weiss Gallery is pleased to present RRRGGHH!!!, Jerry Kearns’ first solo exhibition with the gallery and the artist’s first show in New York since 2006. RRRGGHH!!! features 8 new paintings on canvas as well as 5 wall murals.
RRRGGHH!!! restages the elemental conflict between hero and villain in the template tradition of this type of narrative, good versus evil, begun over 2000 years ago with The Book of Revelations and continued in different iterations today. The paintings present a layered dreamscape inhabited by a recurring cast of characters that have their roots in both the artist’s personal and our public histories. The narrative is organized around scenes from a hero’s journey, the hero himself an amalgamation of some of the most influential archetypes in culture.
Detail from Painting Above
Each painting is a confrontation with one or more dangers, but the interpretation is widely open to discussion, while clues and misleading evidence are left on the canvas for discovery. These paintings reposition familiar images in a universal vocabulary, presenting a destabilized perception of our culture.
Jerry’s work can be seen as history painting, charting our collective cultural mythology over the passage of the last 30+ years. His paintings employ the essence of Pop Art by using recognizable imagery culled from our culture, like the Jesus/Cowboy who was created from a 1950s cartoon and a projection of Bible belt realism. Instead of placing the characters in their typical environments, he uses the vocabulary and familiarity of pop culture imagery as a tool for analyzing the world around him.
The Jesus/Cowboy is at once the outsider and the hero. He often seems lost in the action, looking the wrong way, or looking toward heaven even when danger is imminent and arriving in another direction that we, the viewers, can see unfolding. The animals in these paintings seem to know more than the protagonists do about reality. Good and evil are constantly at odds, and danger lurks everywhere. Each painting is layered with meanings, constructed so as to ask questions but evade answers.
The narrative in this exhibition appears semi-coherent, familiar, and threatening to fall apart as it unfolds. Escaped prisoners are painted directly on the wall to create a didactic clash of literal versus symbolic space. These characters are closer to the actual space we live in, adding a new dimension for encounter. The exhibition plays out like a movie, unwinding its narrative through scene after scene – a painted, epic film still. The stylistic tendencies of his work speaks to the integrity of his practice and vision by allowing us the opportunity to encounter characters we know in an unguarded way, often at dynamic moments in their fictional universes.
The paintings are influenced by the artist’s childhood filled with cowboy movies and serials, newspaper cartoons, comic books, and the colorful illustrations his Preacher showed him in the Bible while growing up. In his work, Jerry is interested in exploring the fundamental relationship revealed in current exercises of power through imagery. Former President George Bush’s polarizing economic and political strategies, which were no relief after Reagan’s trickle-down economic policies, also play a role in the narrative. Jerry saw George Bush’s appropriation of the male archetype of the Cowboy realized in his approach of government policy.
Be sure and visit the Mike Weiss Gallery while RRRGGHH!!! is still up!
Jerry Kearns: RRRGGHH!!! Will be on Exhibit Through August 23rd, 2104 at Mike Weiss Gallery, Located at 520 West 24th Street in the Chelsea Gallery District.
Gallery View with Red Scary Guy Sculpture (All Photos By Gail)
You know it’s going to be a good opening reception when a gallery’s press email announces that there will be a Donut Cart onsite. Sadly, we were not swift and ruthless enough to procure a delicious fried confection (provided by the Donut Plant). But it hardly mattered, because Kolors, the latest Kenny Scharf art collection tucked inside the Paul Kasmin Gallery was, oh, so satisfyingly sweet.
Kenny Scharf’s Totemotiki Sculpture and Detail
If you know Scharf’s work mostly from his many colorful murals dotting the streets of New York City, you’ll definitely recognize the characters depicted in three larger than life, candy-colored sculptures strategically placed around the gallery.
Squirtz, a Two-Sided Sculpted Head sits on a rotating platform.
These sculptures are bordered by walls adorned with single color-themed (though not exactly monochromatic) paintings of Scharf’s signature amorphous shapes, albeit without the customary accompanying facial characteristics. Scharf’s new Kolorscollection makes for one of the most successful transitions of an artist’s work from the street to the gallery that I’ve ever seen.
The bright colors and fun shapes of Kenny Scharf’s art make Kolorsa very family friendly exhibit. Small kids will probably go a little crazy around the sculptures, though, so be aware that touching of the art is strictly not allowed.
In a separate rear room of the Kasmin Gallery, a single oversize painting allows Scharf’s two worlds to collide in an amalgam of the amorphous shapes with faces, done in the style of the Kolorcanvases in the series. Congratulations, Kenny, on a truly spectacular exhibit!
Kenny Scharf’s Kolors will be on Exhibit through May 4, 2013 at Paul Kasmin Gallery, Located at 515 West 27th Street in the Chelsea Gallery District.