Contemporaneous Extension


“We Are All Living Installations”

It isn’t even May and Brooklyn has transcended the 80 degree mark on the Fahrenheit scale. In feeling so jovial, I wanted to return to my homebase and share the excitement! The evacuation of the art community upon first mention of humidity allows for investigations of artist’s studios and a tizzy of group shows. Emergent artists and artists visiting from abroad blossom in the summertime, and the energy is unfathomable. The first stroke of genius of the season can be found at Michael Alan‘s installation occurring this weekend at Dumbo Arts Center. Alan was recently granted an award from the Brooklyn Arts Council that allowed for the rebirth of his Living Installations: an experiment in performance, artistic production, and the union of audio and visual. The production on April 21st is called We Are All Living Installations and will be curated by the ever-clever Emily Colucci, who has followed Alan’s performances closely for several years. This work will integrate a soundtrack, part of Alan’s Sound Drawing project, made over the course of the last several months featuring artists such as Japanther, Geneva Jacuzzi, Noah Becker, Kenny Scharf, and many others. The installations are loosely guided by Alan’s paintings, which are at once intense, lyrical, delicate, and incredibly aggressive. The show is like resetting and engaging your retina like you’ve never done, tasting an image in a spaghetti bowl of narrative obscurity. Tickets for the show can be purchased online through Alan’s website here.

Installation shot from 'Dinner Party for Two,' featuring David Modello and Kim De'ville, 2012. Photo by Joseph Meloy Meloy, courtesy of Michael Alan

Installation shot from 'Dinner Party for Two,' featuring David Modello and Kim De'ville, 2012. Photo by Joseph Meloy Meloy, courtesy of Michael Alan

I recently had a conversation with Michael and have posted the interview on .CRUDO, a bilingual (Spanish/English) platform for commentary on music, art, film, and video. The interview can be found here for your pleasure! Here’s a short snippet:

“LM: You started with the Draw-a-thon and moved into Living Installations, both of which engage the community while developing your own process and stressing your practice to mutate it. What might be your next move in the live sphere?

MA: The Living President Project where I dress up like the president and do dance moves on TV, pointing at weather patterns and what to buy next with girls in bikinis in the back dancing, drinking Lamborghinis. Sign up now and you can get a free scarf! Don’t you just love global warming?

LM: I read a bit about your early performances, which discuss you performing in a Freddy Kruger outfit and doing remixes to “Ice Ice Baby”. What direction is your current music going in, considering the slew of new collaborations?

MA: Well, luckily, I’m not dressed up like Freddy Kruger anymore. I definitely exert myself and push and turn myself inside out during the show with different material. I can joke and act out the music and scenes with the talented models (those freaks love it).”

Michael Alan, Pardon Thee Intrusion, mixed media on paper, 2012.

Michael Alan, Pardon Thee Intrusion, mixed media on paper, 2012. Image courtesy of artist.

Michael Alan, She is My God, 2012, everything on paper, 9" x 11". Image courtesy of the artist.

Michael Alan, She is My God, 2012, everything on paper, 9" x 11". Image courtesy of the artist.



“Squeeze through between the either and the or”

((BIG-UPS TO GOETHE AND JUICE))

National Geographic is about to announce the winner of their yearly contest. Photos are judged on creativity and photographic quality, spanning the standard categories of ‘people,’ ‘places,’ and ‘nature.’ They’re gone through eleven weeks of submissions, here are a few of my favorites from the last two weeks.

Bakhtiyor Rasulev, 'Inside of Hot Air Balloon,' 2010 ((Places - Week 10))

Bakhtiyor Rasulev, 'Inside of Hot Air Balloon,' 2010 ((People - Week 10))

Abubakir Balfaqih, 'Qat Market,' 2010 ((Places -- Week 10))

Abubakir Balfaqih, 'Qat Market,' 2010 ((People -- Week 10))

Pisati Beniamino, 'Burma,' 2010 ((Places -- Week 10))

Pisati Beniamino, 'Burma,' 2010 ((People -- Week 10))

Radoslav Tsvetkov, 'Bulgarian Easter,' 2010 ((Places -- Week 11))

Radoslav Tsvetkov, 'Bulgarian Easter,' 2010 ((People -- Week 11))

Brian Bielmann, 'Crazy Train,' 2010 ((Places -- Week 11))

Brian Bielmann, 'Crazy Train,' 2010 ((People -- Week 11))

Emilie Perret, 'Jade et la poupée,' 2010 ((People -- Week 11))

Emilie Perret, 'Jade et la poupée,' 2010 ((People -- Week 11))

Elmar Akhmetov, 'Fisherman,' 2010 ((People -- Week 11))

Elmar Akhmetov, 'Fisherman,' 2010 ((People -- Week 11))

Rasmus Hartikainen, 'Tjörvafell, Hnausapollur - Iceland,' 2010 ((Places -- Week 10))

Rasmus Hartikainen, 'Tjörvafell, Hnausapollur - Iceland,' 2010 ((Places -- Week 10))

Alison Domzalski, 'The Grandstand,' 2010 ((Places -- Week 10))

Alison Domzalski, 'The Grandstand,' 2010 ((Places -- Week 10))

Gail von Bergen-Ryan, 'Sand Stripes,' 2010 ((Places -- Week 10))

Gail von Bergen-Ryan, 'Sand Stripes,' 2010 ((Places -- Week 10))

Jay Brazzell, 'Weather phenomenon over Silvercreek Colorado November 2009,' 2010 ((Nature -- Week 10))

Jay Brazzell, 'Weather phenomenon over Silvercreek Colorado November 2009,' 2010 ((Nature -- Week 10))

 

 

 

I was introduced to MediaStorm via Benny Norman, a very dear friend of mine. He participated in their media workshop this past November. Each team of three people spends a week generating a story for the website, which includes photo, video, and audio material. His story was one observing and investigating the owner of Paris Blues, a classic bar in Harlem home to the zoot-suiters and jive turkeys of my fantasies. Get the full video HERE.

 

 

 

In looking for emerging artists, I’m intrigued by the several assistant-oriented shows in the last six months. It is a great outlet to show the paradoxes of influence, the individuality peeking from beneath the apprenticeship. Like Marianne Boesky’s Employee of the Month show at the end of the summer or 92Y’s most recent Off the Clock, I am psyched to check out Allan Nederpelt’s take on the concept in their most recent 2-weekend show Team Work. Consisting of over 70 artists, which could be either a buzzkill or fascinating, the PR claims that it unites the immense number of minds who “work collectively to assist a major figure in the art world.” Whether they all work for the same artist or not is a little unclear, but judging from the amount of names I don’t recognize I’m planning on checking the show out this weekend. Its open Dec 11-12, 1-6pm or by appointment.

 

 

 

I discovered G-Spot Brooklyn in looking through the GutBox artists in preparation for their show (Closing tonight at YGallery!) and was intrigued. It’s located in Greenpoint, curated by subtexture and tfuk, and features everything from coffee mugs to collages.

 

Ray Sell, 'Superman Does Not Approve,' mixed media

Ray Sell, 'Superman Does Not Approve,' mixed media

 

 

LASTLY, LET’S GET WEIRD with one of the most significant Surrealist pieces of film on this planet. (Thanks, Dali)

 

Still from 'Un Chien Andalou' (Dali/Bunuel) 1928

Still from 'Un Chien Andalou' (Dali/Bunuel) 1928

Still from 'Un Chien Andalou' (Dali/Bunuel) 1928

Still from 'Un Chien Andalou' (Dali/Bunuel) 1928



Procedures

After a bit of a delay, a new piece is up on BOMB for your aesthetic enjoyment. Erica Harris, a collage artist located in Kensington, Brooklyn, was my most recent subject. Her work is absurdly powerful, detailed, and universal. I enjoyed speaking with her about her experiences abroad, the basis of her worldly symbolism, and the minutiae of her intricate canvases. Check it out HERE.

Erica Harris, 'You Want to Know Why,' 2010, mixed media.

Erica Harris, 'You Want to Know Why,' 2010, mixed media.

Erica Harris, 'Sleep,' 2009, mixed media.

Erica Harris, 'Sleep,' 2009, mixed media.



Part of the Pyramid

I just hooked-up with Like the Spice Gallery in Brooklyn and am going to be helping them out with PR. I’ve been a fan of the gallery for close to three years now after discovering it with Schmesi on one of the many Williamsburg art crawls.  The gallery’s most recent show just premiered on Friday and is open through December. Entitled Formal: A Dirty Word? the show explores form, formalism, and formal criticism in contemporary practice. An excerpt:

“Like the outpouring of zombie cinema in recent years, formalism has been criticized for hovering between crass and unsophisticated, remaining impossibly flighty. Despite their outward simplicity, they both unveil uniquely visceral reactions and challenge the viewer’s understanding of humanity. Controversy has surrounded form since Plato’s discussion of its “inexplicable manner.” Clement Greenberg deduced formalism from Abstract Expressionism, the highest art of the 1960’s in his opinion, a self-contained aesthetic experience of this world but inimitable otherwise.
Formalism currently navigates through the minefields of an extremely commercialized scene. Structural language translates into repetition and single-mindedness, reducing Minimal work to unqualified low-art. Somehow formal work has been sacrificed, quarantined to summer homes in New Haven or doctor’s offices.”

Check out the show, its great!

David E. Peterson

David E. Peterson

Allie Rex

Allie Rex



What’s your spirit animal?

Spirituality is a tart meyer lemon, sweet and sour simultaneously. I’ve always had a fascination with how people manage to explain, verify, justify, and motivate themselves through promises of a higher being or even just a neutralizing, balancing light at the end of the tunnel. I was flabbergasted at the powerful work at Cinders Gallery when i was walking around my neighborhood in south williamsburg, and upon checking into the show the artists involved had such vibrantly unique outlooks. Also, i’ve never been able to turn away from a) intricate collage and b) deranged ink renderings of nature. Check out the full article here.

Jessie Rose Vala, Our nature part 2, graphite on paper, 12 x 11"

Jessie Rose Vala, Our nature part 2, graphite on paper, 12 x 11"

Hisham Bharoocha, 'The Elements', 8" x 11", collage on paper

Hisham Bharoocha, 'The Elements', 8" x 11", collage on paper





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