El Lissitzky (1890 – 1941) created the poster Beat the Whites With the Red Wedge (1919 – 20) in Vitebsk (a city in northeast Belarus, known as the birthplace of Marc Chagall). It is an early example of agitprop (Soviet political propaganda) that uses abstraction. The work was produced during the Russian Civil War (1918 – 21) in support of the Red Army and the young Soviet government in their struggle against anti-Bolshevik White forces. In the middle of the composition, a revolutionary red triangle drives into a white circle on a black background. The symbolic significance of these forms — emphasized by the scattered Russian words for wedge, red, beat, and whites — would have been easily understood by the artist’s contemporaries.
Hey, if you need to find a way to come out to your Mom, and she is also a Star Wars Fan, maybe you can do so via this fun poster, which I spotted on Gansevoort Street out front of the Whitney Museum. You can buy this piece, and other work by artist Denis Ouch via Artfinder at This Link.
Primarily known as a painter and architect, Roberto Matta (1911 – 2002) designed his Malitte Lounge Furniture in 1966. This colorful collection of polyurethane foam shapes (manufactured by Gavina, Italy) could be stacked into a rectangular wall or used as individual pieces of seating. The round, center piece serves as a table. The design is playful and flexible, Its interlocking organic shapes reflect Matta’s training as an architect in his native Chile, as well as his Surrealist painting practice, which developed after his move to Paris.
Photographed in the Museum of Modern Art in NYC.
Below, Malitte Lounge Furniture Poster Photographed in December 2019
Geoffrey and I went out on a massive Art Crawl this past weekend and we saw the above-pictured posters up everywhere in the Chelsea Gallery District. Apparently, they are adverts for Adrien Brody’s new print series, Hooked. As you can see, it is a parody of the Starbucks brand logo, with the coffee merchant’s familiar Siren mascot holding a pistol to each of her temples. Lovely.
The prints debuted at David Benrimon Fine Art booth at the Art New York fair, which ran from May 3rd to 8th as part of Frieze week.
We saw them again on 20th Street, just outside the tunnel entrance to the Comme des Garcons Boutique. Here, street art/graffiti legend Hektad has already left his mark.
Hektad Is So Funky When Wet!
Anyone looking for an art bargain should get to peeling one of these suckers off the wall straight away, otherwise you can buy a proper print for just $25,000 (not a typo) at This Link!
Making an appearance here on The Gig’s Video Clip of the Week for an unprecedented THIRD TIME (Woo!), Long Beach rock trio Tijuana Panthers serendipitously capture both the elation of the beginning of summertime, and the sweet melancholy of summer’s end, in their latest video for the sublime tune, “Front Window Down. I love this band.
Visually, this is a fun, no-frills clip of the band “performing” in a small living room, with super-imposed images of bassist/lead singer Daniel Michicoff rocking out on the vocals, sometimes with a cigarette nonchalantly dangling from the corner of his mouth. A wash of jangly, surf rock guitars buttressed by a viscerally sludgy bassline, this exuberant burst of aural energy takes me back to the surf-garage rock revival of late ’70s / early ’80s California, and it’s all good. “Front Window Down” comes from the band’s upcoming fourth album, Poster, which, perhaps appropriately, will arrive on August 28th (via Innovative Leisure), just in time to reflect on this summer, and summers past. Enjoy!
For Beatles fans who crave an authentic performance experience of the group’s expansive catalog of music, there is certainly no shortage of grand scale productions, which range from Rain and Let it Be on Broadway to 1964 The Tribute – an act that regularly sells out Carnegie Hall. But for fans who maintain a keen interest in the life and post-Beatles career of John Lennon specifically, Lennon: Through a Glass Onion offers something completely different.
Now in evening and matinee performances at the Union Square Theater, Lennon: Through a Glass Onion, is an intimate, two-man show featuring esteemed actor and singer John R. Waters and accompanist Stewart D’Arrietta, which originally saw sell-out tours in the duo’s native Australia. While there are no dazzling lights, clever sets, informative backdrops or special effects to bolster this very stripped down production, what you get is a heartfelt acoustic performance (guitar and piano – and D’Arrietta’s piano playing is quite excellent) of a selection of over thirty of John Lennon’s best and most autobiographical songs – both written with Paul McCartney while in The Beatles, and written and recorded by Lennon as a solo artist.
Tying the musical numbers together is Water’s biographical narrative of John Lennon’s often traumatic youth and tumultuous adulthood, the ups and down of which are punctuated and fleshed out by songs he wrote at that time. Although Water’s speaking voice is appealingly similar to Lennon’s, his (often quite gravelly) singing voice is not, so don’t expect the “close your eyes and imagine it is really him” effect that you can get with so many tributes. Through a Glass Onion is really more like watching two hardcore John Lennon fans perform his songs and talk about his life in a pub setting. This may or may not be your thing, so just know what you are walking into ahead of time.
In order to fit thirty songs into a 90-minute run time, many of the songs are performed as excerpts of various lengths, but you get the idea. Likewise, some liberty is taken with traditional arrangements, which finds “Help!” – one of The Beatles‘ most exhilarating anthems – performed almost as a dirge. Sometimes the alternative arrangements work and other times not so much.
It’s also unclear how much of the biographical information is simply improvised or creatively extrapolated based on various facts but, again, it is easy to imagine that Waters is speaking as Lennon and the story all comes together. As an aside, fans seeking more information about John Lennon’s life as a child and teenager, including the not-very-happy story about his relationship with his mother Julia – which had such a profound influence on so many of his songs — might be better served by the 2009 film, Nowhere Boy. You can find it on Netflix.
An added note about the venue, for those who’ve not yet been to the Union Square Theater, is that you are in for treat in this pristinely maintained, old school theater where every very comfy seat offers optimal viewing, so you don’t have to stretch your ticket buying budget to get the best seat in the house. The theater is also conveniently located three blocks uptown from the Union Square subway hub and is within blocks of dozens of excellent restaurants — so you can plan a night of it!
Lennon: Through a Glass Onion will run through February 22nd, 2015 at the Union Square Theater, located at 100 East 17th Street (Between Park Ave South and Irving Place), New York, NY 10003. Visit Lennon Onstage Dot Com for more information about the show, to get show times and to purchase tickets!