Yesterday — which I think everyone in the tristate area can agree was simply gorgeous — I had the extreme pleasure of visiting the home of friends Cristina and Eric, in the lovely town of Bayonne, NJ. They were hosting a Covid-safe, outdoor picnic for a small group of friends and fiends so that we could all gather for the first time in 18 months and end the summer on a high note. My friends’ home is a breathtaking and delightful homage to pop culture kitsch and horror movie collectibles which must be seen to be believed, but which I can describe as being like if your Halloween decorations were up year-round. Needless to say, but you can see I am about to, even their well-curated collection of refrigerator magnets is enviable, as you can see by the above photo. Have a great week everyone!
If you think the ‘Green Juice’ smoothie that your coworker gets from the juice truck is disgusting — because it is — wait until you check out some of the ingredients inside the crazy concoctions comprising Josh Kline’s refrigerator-case sculpture, Skittles (2014).
Fifteen different smoothie flavors line the shelves of Kline’s light box-encased commercial refrigerator. Each bottle lists the unorthodox ingredients contained within, including inedible items such as latex gloves, duct tape, Ritalin and fragments of Google Glass eyewear.
These high-tech materials, synthetic chemicals, and organic substances evoke specific locations as well as contemporary lifestyles, industries and brands. With varieties like Big Data and Supplements, the indigestible ‘drinks’ inside this glowing cooler clearly illustrate the ways in which our bodies have been engineered, chemically altered, and transformed by technologies of consumption.
Which ‘Flavor’ is your favorite? Take closer look, below!
If you like retro foreign cars, and also drinking, here’s a way to combine those two passions without risking arrest or death. The SMEG500, launched in Paris in May 2013, is a Refrigerator / Wine Cooler representing a creative collaboration between SMEG — makers fine retro-look refrigerators and other high end kitchen appliances — and Fiat, the iconic Italian car manufacturer. Talk about a sweet ride!
Handmade with genuine original Fiat 500 parts, the refrigerator / wine cellar is A+ rated for energy efficiency, has a 100 litre capacity, and is available in White and Green as well as the Red finish.
Check out that side profile!
The SMEG500 retails for about $10,000 and can be purchased at This Link!
Photographed that the Architectural Digest Design Show at Pier 94, NYC in March 2018.
If you like Coca Cola and World Politics and have a twisted sense of humor, then UNIX Gallery in Chelsea is currently hosting an exhibit you will enjoy. Always Shameless, an exhibition of new work by Spanish artist Eugenio Merino is instantly polarizing for its depiction of life-sized Political Leaders including Hugo Chavez, Kim Jong Il, Vladimir Putin and George W. Bush displayed in Coca Cola Refrigerator Coffins. Surely, this visual alone will inspire hours of lively discourse.
Walls at either end of the the Coca Cola Case Display are mirrored, creating an infinity effect and indicating that the line of corrupt leadership “goes on forever,” according to Gallery owner Alex Cesaria, whom I spoke to at the opening reception this past Thursday. The figures of each well known leader (most now deceased but some still living) are all astoundingly lifelike (although a few have noticeably over-sized heads, take that however you want).
According to the exhibit’s press release, Always Shameless is the culmination of a project Merino began in 2011 with Always Franco, a life sized sculpture of uniformed Spanish dictator Francisco Franco preserved in a Coca Cola refrigerator. The Fundación Nacional Francisco Franco, an organization dedicated to preserving Franco’s legacy, quickly sued the artist over the sculpture as well as for a second sculpture the artist created of the dictator. Merino went to trial twice to defend his freedom of speech and won both cases. As an aside, I can’t help but recall the long-running punch line on early seasons of Saturday Night Live’s Weekend Update News segment, reporting that “Generalissimo Francisco Franco is Still Dead.” If you are too young to remember that, it doesn’t matter.
Always Putin Detail
Despite the legal setbacks, the artist has continued his series of sculptures of political figures for the exhibition. The title of the show, Always Shameless is a play on the 1993 Coca Cola slogan “Always.” Merging the political nature of the artist’s sculptures with the branding of a universally recognized product brings these ultimately dark and poignant works into the more accessible forum of popular culture. As Kestum Bilt (a Branding authority) puts it, ” These works evoke the unspeakable in a field of voices”.
Merino’s work undoubtedly reflects his struggle as a politically active and controversial artist. Speaking directly to the issues of manipulation and control throughout the 21st century, his works challenge the artistic and social limits his subjects have set upon their respective societies. Their legacies have been preserved simply through our participation in keeping their reigns alive. Jonathan Jones of The Guardian noted, “it seems incredible that General Franco is still oppressing artists in Spain from beyond the grave.”
Vladimir Putin Punching Bag, Very Timely!
As a terrific kick off to the summer, Always Shameless is a Do Not Miss Exhibit!
Eugenio Merino’s Always Shameless will be on Exhibit Through July 12th, 2014 at UNIX Gallery, Located at 532 W 24th Street in the Chelsea Gallery District.
I’m not a generally known to be much of a “kid person,” but this little boy reacting to a bunch of Lobsters is just all kinds of adorable fun. I totally succumbed to a cuteness attack while watching this one!