This week I’ve got links to articles about the Venice Biennale, art blogging grants, James Franco, the trilogy of Samuel Beckett plays at NYU, Margie Livingston, project proposal deadline, Prince, and a $50 Stock Club for artists…
Great choice! Mark Bradford will represent the US at the next Venice Biennale, which opens May 2017. Image at top: Mark Bradford, Sexy Cash (2013), in the collection of the Rose Art Museum of Brandeis University, the sponsoring institution for the United States pavilion. Read more.
Blogging grants: Alex Teplitzky follows up with some of the bloggers (including me) who received Creative Capital/Warhol Foundation Arts Writers Grants. In Part I of a three-part series, he asks what we did with the money. FYI, the deadline for 2016 CC/WF grant applications is May 18. Read here.
Interview: In NY Magazine, Jerry Saltz explains the art world to James Franco:
Saltz: One, had you, say, riffed on Jeff Koons — an artist people love to hate — it might’ve been different. Successful male artists are easy to hate — the art world loves devouring itself. When I as a straight man say anything about women, I have a lot of trouble. And with Cindy, you walked right into the very heart of feminism. But had your show not been at a megagallery, had it not been at Pace … I wonder if it might’ve been different at White Columns or Gavin Brown. Those guys, with their credibility, saying, ‘Hey, fuck you, man. I like this guy, his film stills.'”
Franco: Kim Gordon showed at White Columns.
Saltz: Well, we’re going to like her.
Franco: Yeah. She’s got cred.
Saltz: She’s been allowed to cross over even when her work isn’t good. She’s been allowed to make Zombie Formalism and not be called out.
Franco:Yeah, and why do you think?
Saltz: God, you’re just making me want to cry. Because she comes always from the art world. She’s always been of it. The band, the persona. Every ounce of her. She is a rare exception, though. John Waters, same thing. We don’t call him out for sometimes being a weaker conceptual artist or derivative.
Franco:So what happened with me?
Saltz: I think you put yourself in a quadruple crosshairs. You’re a “celebrity.” You’re a man. You’re dealing with Cindy Sherman, of all people. And then you’re at the weirdest of all the mega-galleries.
Franco: I totally agree. I totally agree. Read the entire interview.
I’ve named the plucky, persistent sinkhole on W. 96th and West End #JamesFranco. It reminds me of something from a Camus novel. The city workers patch it each night, but it always returns the next day. Read more about it here.
Beckett: I recently saw three brilliant and unsettling Beckett plays — Not I (1972), Footfalls (1975), and Rockaby (1980) at NYU’s Skirball Center at NYU. The trilogy was directed by famed Beckett director Walter Asmus and performed by Lisa Dwan, who, besides being a mesmerizing performer, is a Beckett scholar. If you’re a Beckett fan, check out their interview at BOMB. Dwan says she performed the plays in Paris and ‘Half the audience was weeping. Why is that? You know, before I open both eyes each morning I’m on Facebook or Twitter… what’s that line from Rockaby, ‘high and low, looking for another, at her window, another like herself, another living soul, one other living soul, at her window.’ That’s what we do—we run from this situation, looking for ‘another living soul,’ like ourselves. We don’t talk that often about it, but we are always fighting off death. It really is a breath away, for all of us. It’s one playing field, no matter what. We’re all a breath away from this unknown.” Read more.
In the LA Times, Carolina Miranda recommends an exhibition of work by Margie Livingston at Luis De Jesus in Los Angeles. “Livingston doesn’t make paintings; she makes ‘paint objects’ — canvases wrapped in acrylic paint skin that she straps to her body, then drags through the city’s streets. Part penance, part performance, these actions leave behind a work that is as much a wall hanging as it is evidence of something darkly destructive.” Yes, indeed. And so real. Opens on April 23, 2016.
Project proposals: EFA Project Space is looking for proposals for 2017. “EFA Project Space requests proposals for group exhibitions that critically, poetically, or playfully focus on large questions connected to the creative processes and social consciousness of artists and art communities. Three 6 – 8 week exhibitions will be selected to act as the backdrop for a series of public events. Priority will be given to proposals that focus on New York City’s cultural landscape.” Read more.
$50 Stock Club: Tuesday, May 10, 2016, I’ll be hosting a livestreamed event called “$50 Stock Club” at an apartment somewhere (to be announced) in Bushwick. Fifteen to twenty artists will each kick in 50 bucks to buy stocks because if financial workers can pick art, we can pick stocks, right? This event is a part of MONTH2MONTH, a public art project in private residences organized by artists William Powhida & Jennifer Dalton and produced by More Art. Read more.
At Frieze, Jonathan Griffin writes a short post about artist biographies: “Historical studies (and much academic criticism) incline towards a feeling for the gestalt, the bigger picture, smoothed of its wrinkles. Biographical narrative, on the other hand, is coloured by incongruities and crossed-wires that interrupt the grand flow. It shows us how complicated and messy all lives are, and proves, as with Martin, that chaos can contribute to expressions of great simplicity and clarity.” Read more.
Prince has died. In 1985 I saw him perform at the Worcester Centrum (Image above: Prince at the Worcester Centrum on March 27, 1985, by Jim Wilson for The Boston Globe) and he was unlike any musician I’d ever seen–check out the setlist here. The show started with “Let’s Go Crazy” and ended with “Purple Rain.” The sound, the creativity and the unbridled energy were absolutely explosive. Although his death comes as a surprise, apparently he had been ill. An autopsy will be performed today. Read more.
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