When visual merchandising is responsible for probably 90% of retail sales, Dylan’s Candy Bar knows that the best way to sell bulk candy is to arrange it by its place in the color spectrum! That also makes iy much easier to get a photo of all the varieties of Pink Candy at one time!
Hey, do you enjoy the work of legendary minimalist artist John McCracken? I sure do. According to the obituary published in the New York Times when McCracken passed away in 2011 at the age of 76, “he was one of the few artists affiliated with the [Minimalist] movement who did not object to its name, and who made most of his work by hand: sanding and polishing his enamel, lacquer or resin surfaces until their colors achieved a flawless and reflective perfection.” Right now, David Zwirner Gallery, who has represented McCracken’s art for two decades, is hosting an exciting collection of the artist’s late career works, whose monochromatic, highly reflective surfaces are inspired in part by the West Coast’s car culture. Sigh. If you are in any way a fan, you will not want to miss this exhibit.
The exhibition presents key examples from three discrete groups of work — leaning multi-part wall pieces, wall-mounted multi-part reliefs, and freestanding columns — that McCracken created outside of his iconic planks. On view are a selection of the artist’s Beam works, each comprising multiple tall narrow components that lean against the wall, first exhibited in his 2008 solo presentation at David Zwirner.
Some multi-part works, such as Space (2008), consist of a rhythmic combination of an array colors, here blue and green; while others like Song (2008) explore tonal, more subtle variations within a single color, in this case red. Still others are monochromatic.
Titles are likewise employed as a pictorial metaphor in McCracken’s lesser-known wall reliefs, such as Fire (2007), created for documenta 12 in 2007, and Light (2004), which exist in the interstices of painting and sculpture.
Above and Below: Chord (2004)
In the front gallery you’ll find a grouping of four eight-foot tall freestanding columns, arranged in a configuration similar to the artist’s 2004 exhibition at the gallery, exploring the phenomenological relationship between work, viewer, and architecture through their outsized stature.
Sculptures By John McCracken’s will be on Exhibit Through April 15th, 2017 at David Zwirner Gallery, Located at 537 West 20th Street, in the Chelsea Gallery District.
No matter how confident I ever am that I know most of the street level galleries in Chelsea, today I stopped it to the Heller Gallery on Tenth Avenue and asked how long they’d been open, since this was the first time I’d noticed them. The answer, which was quite unexpected, is that they’ve been at that location almost two years! How have I missed that? I have a few ideas.
What had initially sucked me in off the street was a collection of blown glass works in the window. When I stepped farther back into the gallery, however, my eyes were dazzled by this piece by artist Katherine Gray, entitled A Rainbow Like You (2015); an installation of blown glass, acrylic and lightning. I couldn’t help but think of the work of artist Dale Chihuly; specifically, in his Persian Ceiling Gallery, which is beyond breathtaking.
This work sells for $25,000.
Heller Gallery is Located at 303 10th Ave. (between 27th and 28th Streets) in the Chelsea Gallery District.
Any Blogger who’s ever tried to photograph an exhibit at The Guggenheim will tell you it’s no easy task: what with their strict “No Photography” rules coupled with the numerous Art Nazis (aka guards) strategically placed throughout the galleries. And that just blows; because, to me, if you can’t photograph the art, it’s like it never existed. That’s why I only managed to capture a few good shots of James Turrel’s epic light installation, Aten Reign, as it transformed the Guggenheim’s Rotunda from various shades of purple to numerous hues of blue on its way through the entire color spectrum. But these few photos probably serve as a sufficient teaser, because this is one of those exhibits that you have to experience in person to really “get.”
For Aten Reign, the entire rotunda has been re-imagined to serve as a canvas for this intensely site-specific work of art. All open space between the rotunda and the museum’s spiraling ramps has been sealed off with white scrim, which reflects the colored lights and creates a meditative, open-sky effect. Visitors can best experience Aten Reign either by sitting on provided seating along the walls of the rotunda’s ground floor, or actually laying flat in the center of the floor on provided mats — though this space seemed to be in fairly high-demand, and was not prone to frequent vacancies.
There are a few other, minimalist exhibits of Turrel’s light work along the ramps and in a few of the upper galleries, but trust me, Aten Reign is the money shot, so spend as much time as you can just enjoying it. Find out more about the exhibit and see a video of how they put this thing together at Guggenheim Dot Org.
James Turrell At The Guggenheim (5th Avenue at 90th Street in NYC) Runs Only Through September 25, 2013, so don’t wait too long before planning your trip!