Saturday, February 14, 2009
Friday, February 13, 2009
Talking Popcorn, Nina Katchadourianwas
Douglas Britt just gave y'all a gift. He shined the shows (did I mean shoes?) of the MFAH with a ham-handed review of the recent Equivalence: Acts of Translation in Contemporary Art on the day that it closed. If you hadn't heard about it, its just as well. It was totally not cool.
Britt quotes the catalog describing the show's thematic thread; "[Equivalence] explores how visual artists, like linguists, go about 'starting with one thing and translating it into something else,'" which just sounds like a pale remnant of Jasper Johns' famous quote "Take an object, do something to it. Do something else to it." Truly, the artists exhibited here are able to take intriguing narrative, nostalgia and art history and translate it into boring.
Meltdown (After Monet:4), Sherrie Levine
Considering that every artist that ever did anything has taken something and done something to it, Britt's point that "[t]here are probably enough artists working in similar veins to fill a show" bashes readers' skulls in with its alacrity to honor the curator of Equivalence, Jennifer King.
With bloody bits of bone and smeared gray matter everywhere in the white-walled room, there is no need to explain why this show is boring, it just looks uninteresting. I thought the popcorn popper that translates "pops" into words was cool at first, but then the depressing reality of trying to get coherent inspiration from random elements convinced me that Nina Katchadourianwas just a hopeless romantic, tied up in knots over the end of history, the end of art, the end of the artworld, and the end of beauty.
The current status quo for artists graduating from prestigious universities is to wrap a world of nothingness around their art objects, projecting strength through snake oil and slight-of-hand. The boobs who buy it are fit to be shorn of their dollar bills, buying the favor of a dinner guest or more than willing Shylock victim more than the object itself. While provenance has always been the base of art history, and this show lends institutional weight to the work included, the sheer BOOOORINGness of it all is enough for one to question the entire system- like when a call in a basketball game goes the wrong way and you just shut off the TV. Equivalence is blatantly, patently offensive in its inability to connect with an audience who has not read specifically about the artists.
I mean, come on, yo.
Thursday, February 12, 2009
Butt sketching artist visits campus
silly Texas Tech
Students gathered Wednesday afternoon in the Student Union Building to get portraits of their backsides.
Krandel Lee Newton has been sketching butts for more than 20 years and visited Texas Tech Wednesday to give students a one-of-a-kind piece of art.
Newton sketched groups and individuals for four hours, spending about two and a half minutes on each sketch. The artist said he practices his talent around the world.
"I don't have a clue why it's so popular," he said of his art, "and in all the time I've done it, I just can't say why."
While people may be apprehensive when they first hear "butt sketch," Newton said they get on board quickly once they see the art being made.
via Daily Toreador
Bill Davenport sez:
Houston artists Carter Ernst and Paul Kittelson crashed their truck last Thursday on U.S. Highway 87 at Bean Road outside San Angelo while towing Ernst's giant chicken sculpture to a show in Midland.
According to DPS spokesman Trooper Shawn Baxter, a school bus was traveling north on Bean Road when it stopped in the median while crossing Highway 87. The driver, Michael Peeples, 72, of San Angelo, then nosed into the westbound lane of U.S. 87 and into the path of the artist's pickup truck.
The bus, empty but for one child (who was uninjured), dramatically overturned. Ernst was taken to to hospital with broken ribs, but she, Kittelson and their two dogs will be OK. The chicken remains in stable condition.
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
Thursday, February 12th
4th Floor Project Gallery
B. Moss: Diagnostic Landscapes
Joan Wich & Company
Opens Friday, Feb. 20, 6-8 pm
DEBRIS: Won’t Get Fooled Again, Again.
Heal the heartache. Soothe the wounds of a divided nation and a hateful world. No, I don’t think so. Talking with Brian Moss is like a conversation with Kup from the 1986 Transformers movie. Everything that happens has a reference, and they’re usually not too flattering. Watch as a planet changes into a giant robot and grabs the earth in its hands, you might have something new, but besides that- it’s all been done under the sun.
Elect a charismatic leader with too many hopes and dreams? Been there. Financial system collapses due to American greed? Done that. Another new fashion, designed to titillate and offend? Bullshit. It’s been done, and done better. Moss will be center stage this February 20th at Joan Wich Gallery (4411 Montrose) for his first solo show, but don’t expect that to be a time for reflection.
A gruff snarl, maybe a silly face, but no deep introspection. The man stands for a minute with pain on his face, but then grabs his knee and complains about digging palms out of the ground all over the Third Ward and Eastwood. He rotates his shoulder slowly, speaking of exploding head gaskets and motorcycles chopped into Road Warrior monsters. Rubbing his eyes, he is reminded of the sights and smells of war in
The fields and forests of the heartland lie in the back of Moss’s mind. Born into a generations-old military family, his early years were spent in art school in
Into this space, the loss of real solutions in the face of psychological band-aids and fully realized imaginary worlds, steps Moss’s latest body of work. He began in parking lots, on sidewalks and in empty lots, zeroing in on discarded material to repurpose. Moss found photographs, banal scenes from other people’s eyes. Buoyed along by the GI Bill, he copied, redrew, distilled, sketched, denatured, scrawled and scribbled his snapshot inspirations into ghostly, depopulated landscapes and examinations of emptiness. Moss struggled against the faculty at the
For this February 20th exhibit Moss has expanded the size of his large charcoal drawings, the emptiness populated by abstractions of light, wind and texture. As the 21st century buoys us away from physicality, reality and tactility, these wisps of calm hold the viewer to the inevitable loss of their life- to a moment when the world, in all its vitality and emotion, floats away from us- leaving only quiet contemplation and the search for a reference to ground it in.
Judge Ellis, smarter than the average groundhog
“In 23 years I’ve never seen anything like this,” the judge said. “The jurors all seemed pretty upset, but there’s no way to unring that bell.”
The lone GOP criminal judge to win re-election in November, [Kurt] Ellis placed the blame squarely on a substitute bailiff, whose name he didn’t know. His regular bailiff was sick.
“I told him I never want to see him in my courtroom again,” Ellis said.via Chron
Join us at Caroline Collective on February 12th for the Houston Twestival. Intermingle outside in the courtyard and listen to local Houston bands, intermix inside and listen to local Houston djs. Buy a raffle ticket and win prizes like a Family Membership to the Children’s Museum of Houston, a Paintball Party for your friends, a Linux Journal Power Pack, a complete one room interior redesign, tickets to the HMNS, photography shoots, sewing classes, gelato, gift certificates to local restaurants, and more!
On February 12, 2009, over 105 cities around the world will host Twestivals, bringing together Twitter communities for an evening of fun to raise money and awareness for charity: water. Houston, the fourth largest city in the United States, home to a diverse population and vibrant digital community, will be one of the premiere cities for Twestival 2009.
7pm Blue Funk, http://blue-funk.com
8pm Snake Charmers, http://thesnakecharmers.net
9pm Wayside Drive, http://waysidedrive.com
10pm Red Eye Carl and the Pirates, http://cdbaby.com/cd/redeyecarl
HOUSTON’s GOAL: RAISE $4000 to BUILD A WELL!
plus follow me on twitter too
Tuesday, February 10, 2009
Wooster Collective takes a well worded look at the conspiracy theory that is probably behind the resent arrest of OBEY outside the ICA on the eve of his largest exhibit to date.
via Wooster (read it HERE)
The real story about Shepard Fairey's arrest in Boston Friday night is the resulting riot that didn't happen – a riot that the Boston Police Department may have carefully planned to provoke and hoped would happen that evening, but didn't.
On January 2nd, Boston Mayor Thomas Menino proposed a one-year wage freeze for city workers, including the Boston Police Department. The Boston Police Superior Officers Federation agreed to a contract on January 23, but not until after the city dismissed its residency case against West Roxbury Police Sergeant Michael Hanson. In the mix of the deal was an alleged list of more than 25 superior police officers who are living outside the city in violation of their contracts' residency requirements. Through the use of strong-arm tactics, the Mayor got his wage freeze and at least 25 of Boston's Finest got to keep their jobs. The following day, two warrants were issued for Shepard Fairey's arrest.
On Wednesday, February 4th, Mayor Menino met with Shepard and was photographed shaking his hand following the unveiling of Fairey's 'Peace Goddess' banner on the North wall of City Hall at a public event to promote his show, Supply and Demand, at the Institute of Contemporary Art / Boston. Thursday night Shepard sat for a Q-and-A talk at the ICA which was publicized by the museum after which he signed autographs for more than an hour. Shepard was not arrested until two full weeks after the warrants had been issued and after numerous public appearances in Boston.
The obvious question is: Why did the police take so long after the warrant was issued to apprehend their man? Was it a matter of pure incompetence? As admiring fans of his work, were the police giving him opportunity to make appearances and put more art out on the streets of Boston? I don't think so.
It's my opinion based on what I experienced, Shepard Fairey became a pawn in an ugly political game in which the Boston Police Department was willing to risk the safety of the citizens it has sworn to protect in order to punish the Mayor for his shady deal. With cops and city government officials like that, who needs criminals? Apparently they do.
-Dave Combs, publisher of PEEL Magazine