Thursday, February 24, 2005

More Snow to Make "The Gates" Even More Fun To See Again!

Beyond my hopes this new snow comes to enliven and enhance the incredible experience of Christo and Jeanne-Claude's Gates in Centeral Park. Enjoy Nueva York!

Monday, February 21, 2005

Christo and Jeanne-Claude’s Creamsicles in Central Park

Ah, just what I had been hoping for: a great snowfall to bring a new perspective to “The Gates”. Now we can see “The Gates” with new eyes. Remember Creamsicles? Those delicious evocations of summers past are memorably reconstituted at a giant scale for all to see in the Park: child-like wonder is the result. Wide-eyed wonderment from locals, tourists, mad dogs and Englishmen has replaced the usual curmudgeonly New York glumness. Conceptual Art is Dead! Long-Live Conceptual Art.

Thursday, February 17, 2005

Tim Hawkinson @ The Whitney

Tim Hawkinson gets my vote for the whackiest and most far-out exhibit of the season. I went to the
"Whip-me" Museum
ostensibly to see the Cy Twombly exhibit (a bore!) and instead was diverted into the much more interesting Hawkinson exhibit. More on this to come.

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Sotheby's Cape Cod Tag Sale: Duck Decoys

I stopped by to see the auction of Property from Kennedy Family Homes (New York:
15 Feb 05 - 17 Feb 05)at Sotheby's today.From what I glimpsed it looked like an old-fashioned Cape Cod tag sale with cheesy watercolors of the sea and duck decoys! Yes, I witnessed the auction of three duck decoys which went for five thousand clams. Is that a good price?

Sunday, February 13, 2005

de Kooning : "The King"

Did you know that "de kooning" means the king in Dutch? I just finished the first section "Holland" of the Mark Stevens and Annalyn Swan recently published biography. The rags-to-riches immmigrant boilerplate is here re-told in an engaging and fresh style. I hope that the last section "Twilight" doesn't try to gloss over the fact that the last fifteen or so years of de Koonings output was suspect from many angles... more on this later.
Joop Sanders, a former painting teacher of mine, is quoted throughout as he was a fellow Dutch expatriate and F.O.B. (de Kooning, that is). Like many New York artists, the shadow of "de king" loomed large and much of the art of the last 50 years is a reaction against the macho/loner/magalomaniacal/hard-drinking/womanizing painter. We are still too close to really get an historical perspective on all of this but this biography promises to be interesting if not entirely un-biased.

Saturday, February 12, 2005

Christo and Jeanne-Claude's Gates Unfurled 2/12/05:

The Gates: A jolt of optimism for these parlous times

Just got back from Central Park where the Gates were unfurled today. Although the gates were erected over the course of the last week, today was "the unfurling"; each gate held aloft a cocoon containing the bright orange nylon awaiting this day to emerge. For Christo fans, this was an epiphany; for art lovers an event; but for many this was a chance to get out in the park and take a look through new eyes with fresh colors, shapes and ideas to mingle with and muddle through.

Read more about the gates from the artists website.

This from the official website of Central Park:
On February 12, New York City and Central Park launched an extraordinary art event. Celebrated artists Christo and Jeanne-Claude unfurled THE GATES, PROJECT FOR CENTRAL PARK 1979-2005. On view for 16 days, the 7,500 gates will line 23 miles of pathways in Central Park, from 59th Street to 110th Street. Saffron-colored fabric panels will hang seven feet above the ground, blowing in the wind and delighting the public walking beneath with a warm glow of translucent color. The gates will seem like a golden river appearing and disappearing through the bare branches of the trees. The exhibit is free for everyone to enjoy and will not interfere with normal Park activity.

Monday, February 07, 2005

Beckmann/Picasso at Feigen Gallery Extended

With the recent Matisse / Picasso and the Max Beckmann shows at MoMA Qeeens still fresh in our collective memory, this thoroughly engaging show turns out to be one of the highlights of this season.
Mythic in ambition and accomplishment, Beckmann shared with Picasso an interest in harlequins, acrobats and the theater in many signature works. Beckmann, of course, knew of the Spaniards work and this show presents many paintings and prints produced immediately before or during his stay in Paris in the late thirties.
Both Picasso and Beckmann backed away from pure abstraction and their images remained rooted in “the real”; even the most distorted of Picasso’s images always refer to something: woman’s head, a kiss, or a guitar.

“Works of art are objects of metamorphosis-like the gods.” – Andre Malraux, Picasso’s Mask, 1974. p.239

The pairing of these artists makes perfect sense and offers many reminders of the strength and vigor of both these titans. Proteus and Prometheus indeed as Jan Krugier put it so succinctly (the Jan Krugier Gallery is co-presenting the show with Richard Feigen). This show has been extended two weeks (until February 12th) and I was able to see it last week.

Read more about this show at Richard Feigen Gallery.