Fisk and I went to Austin for the Brewskee Ball National Championships!   We had an absolutely incredible time.  We had delicious Mexican food and tried an amazing avocado margarita. I waited in line for 3 hours to try Franklin BBQ - and it was worth every minute, seriously the best BBQ of my entire life.  Seeing our extended BBNC family was such a blast. Everyone rolled their heart out and did such an amazing job. 

We murdered pinatas, saw a ton of bats fly into the night, had many drinks, went to the Capitol, went to a couple art museums (post about that soon!), slid down the slip and slide, and spent some serious quality time with the best people on earth.  To top it off, our dear friends Snakes won the Rollers Tournament!  It's great to have one of your good friends crowned the best roller in the United States.  Fisk and I are heading back to NYC, back to real life.   


Don Voisine at McKenzie Fine Art Inc.

I enjoyed this series of paintings simply because they were so compositionally gratifying.  One's eye finds an easy path to look upon, falling and staring into the strips and plains that vividly remind oneself that these are works that care about color and form.  At first glance these paintings might seem a little simple, but close up one can see the careful and complicated nature behind them.  If I were in a position to buy art, I would have a difficult time passing up one of these elegant works. 


Gabriel Barcia-Colombo / Joanne Greenbaum / Steven Parrino in the LES.

Tomorrow Fisk and I are going to Austin, TX for the Brewskee Ball National Championship. I'm really excited about getting out of the city for a week and enjoying the hot (& hopefully dry) weather down there.  My only goals for this trip are: Art going, Skeeball, Tex Mex, and BBQ. With any luck, I'll turn a little brown. This last weekend I was able to sneak in a stroll through the Lower East Side.  The next few posts will feature my findings. 

Gabriel Barcia-Colombo at Muriel Guepin Gallery

This collection of sculptures by Barcia-Colombo were fun to look at, and also interactive.  All works featured a projection into some glass that allowed each container to feature a person stuck inside each bottle.  The blender also featured a projection, though when you turned the blender on the woman inside spun around, and when you stopped she fell to the floor from exhaustion.  The works were enjoyable, but the lighting wasn't ideal.  Maybe I'm just spoiled on how well done projection is at Disneyland.  I mean, were these as believable as ghosts in the Haunted Mansion? Not really. 

Joanne Greenbaum 

I really loved these seemingly wonky sculptures by Greenbaum.  The rough texture next to the slick and shiny paint  dripping down the sides creates a nice relationship.  The shapes and structures are varied enough to create a movement that pulls you around each work. Crude mark making allows these works to feel very honest, while composition and physicality make for solid compositions. 

Steven Parrino

About six or seven of these drawings were shown with the work of Greenbaum.  These energetic works featured Duct Tape and a vivid red paint that cannot avoid a comparison to blood. The tearing and taping of the work evokes a sense of something that cannot be repaired, as if the culmination of these works onto their paper and into their frames was the absolute best that could be done.


Man Ray by Roland Penrose Part 3

I hate summarizing.  It takes away from the inherent value of detail and description.  It seems appropriate to find works that I particularly resonated with, while providing a concise paragraph about the context of said resonance. 

The Bridge 1937

This pen and ink drawing begins a book titled Les Mains Libres and is followed by a preface where Paul Eluard concludes, "Man Ray draws so as no to forget himself, but to be present, so that the world shall not disappear from his eyes.  He draws to be loved.  Desire, life, are neither happy nor sad."  I enjoyed these drawings for their ability to capture this opposing yet romantic notion. 

Hamlet 1949

Man Ray left Paris and move to California around 1940. He found a studio, a new wife, a new car and began a new life that motivated him to create all kinds of new work.  Man Ray's Shakespearian Equations were exhibited at The Copley Gallery.  The paintings were a direct response to Breton's notion, "it would be falling into the trap of closed rationalism to oppose mathematical objects with their arid formulas to poetical objects with more seductive titles." Man Ray sought to prove that there could be artistic inspiration in the mathematical objects, in response to Breton he says, "In returning to the mathematical objects as a source of material for my Shakespearian Equations, I proposed to myself to take liberties not only with legends but with the forms themselves, their composition, and by the addition of colour to make them as arbitrary as the most creative work could be." The subtle ambition of this successful attempt really speaks to the kind of strategies that motivated the work of Man Ray. 

Later, Breton wrote this Poem about Man Ray. 

The indoor trapper
The velvety guardian of the grapes of sight
The captor of the sun and the champion of shadows
The great examiner of the scenes of everyday life
The navigator of the never seen and the wrecker of the foreseen
The prince of the snapshot
The early riser of style
The plasterer of fashion
The pilot of kites - lips and hearts - over our roofs
The spinner of air into as many streamers of Riemann
The despair of the parrot
The inscrutable gambler
My friend Man Ray



Man Ray, by Roland Penrose Part 2

Man Ray felt connected with the new group of artists and poets that he had met in Paris.  It was right around this part of the biography where I started to become impatient.  Penrose brushes over what kind of participation Man Ray had with the Dadaists in Paris, before moving right into claims that Man Ray then continued to influence and participate in the Surrealist movement. 

IX Mime 1916-17/42
41 Rayograph

Man Ray began to develop his photographs and participated in a couple shows where his work was either ignored or written off as Dada sensationalism.  At some point Picabia convinced Man Ray to pursue photography more seriously and this granted Man Ray more success that then became profitable.  Penrose makes this point,

 “Since Man Ray is essentially a poet, the division between painting and photography becomes imperceptible in his hands.  He has, moreover, been able to argue that he used photography for those things he does not wish to paint and painting for what cannot be photographed.”  

It’s not that I disagree with this sentiment towards Man Ray, but since Penrose felt so convinced, it would be interesting to see how he believed Man Ray’s work was functioning in this way.  Perhaps I’m just asking of too much of an explanation.  Man Ray soon stumbled upon the process that led to his Rayographs. The random combination of items paired with the dark processed tones of the photograph create a hauntingly poetic sense of ‘pure Dada’. 

Portrait of Picasso
Portrait of Duchamp
Man Ray began to give the greater part of his time to Portraits, and had many well known artists and poets sit for him.  After Man Ray found success in portraiture, he met Kiki of Montparnasse.  Penrose describes their relationship,

 “Their life, full of intimacy and affection, was perpetually stimulated by the brilliance and intelligence that was current in Paris during the twenties.  Cafe life was animated by foreigners from all parts, but Man Ray was right in choosing as his first love in Paris a girl who combined the passionate temperament of the French with natural elegance and devastating wit. She could be enchantingly vulgar or disarmingly sensitive.”  

Kiki inspired many new works for Man Ray, perhaps most well known, Violin d’Ingres 1924... 

Violin d'Ingres 1924


James Victore: Aphorisms on Art & Idea Execution

I never blog about the art that comes through the Ace Hotel, which may or may not be ridiculous seeing as I've been working there for about a year and half.  I suppose I figure they've got it covered, but this particular show I enjoyed very much.  Victore describes his work as "part Darth Vader, part Yoda," which can hardly be argued with, as so many of his phrases fall into categories of good and evil.  The active slogans of sorts are inspirational, better yet you can take the essence of them with you - stickers are provided for anyone to tear off and wear around, or place in a pivotal part of one's daily sites. It's a great show, but who knows,  I've been really into orange neon lately and the bright orange text seems to gratify my desire. Maybe I'm needing to watch the 5th element so I can stare obsessively into Lilu Dallas' great hair.  Warrior not worrier. Yes please.  The show is up until May 25th.