Saturday, April 30, 2011

George Condo's Twisted Fantasy Museum Show + SOFA wrap-up + The First Dessert, Ever - Milk & Honey

ART: Now Showing
Last Chance to View
George Condo: Mental States
at NYC's New Museum

Painter and Sculptor George Condo, born 1957 in New Hampshire, has three-decade's of his work displayed on the walls of the New Museum, in NYC. He studied art history and music theory at the University of Massachusetts in Lowell, but when he arrived in New York in 1980, he quickly became part of the East Village art scene as a studio artist and worked briefly at Andy Warhol's Factory. He ran with Keith Haring and Jean-Michel Basquiat and collaborated with William Burroughs on an album cover for Phish. (Recently the artist created a controversial album cover for Kanye West. This cover art caused the album to be banned by Wal-Mart and Apple iTunes. It shows a crazy faced nude Kanye being mounted by a devilish female nude angel with a polka dot tail.)

Condo's retrospective museum exhibition comes down in a few days and it's worth a quick visit, especially if you have not seen New York's New Museum.
The main gallery of the show has a giant wall of paintings displayed salon style with no art on the side walls to distract the viewer. If you are not familiar with George Condo's art, he has a "Cubistic Looney Toons" of a style which he mixes with his art history knowledge. He paints mostly portraits in classic styles with crazy eyes, and dropped jaws and has done this consistently for years, long enough for his style to take hold. In 1992 he was quoted as saying: "...I realized that the central focal point of portraiture did not have to be representational in any way.  You don't need to paint the body to show the truth about a character, all you need is the head and the hands." 
In addition to the portraits there are a selection of sculptural gold and bronze busts and graffiti / abstracted / figurative / line and color-paintings. 

George Condo, Homeless Harlequins, 2004.

George Condo, The Insane Queen, 2006.

George Condo, Mary Magdalene, 2009.

George Condo, Female Figure Composition, 2009.

George Condo, Black and White Abstraction, 2005.

George Condo, Internal Space, 2005.

George Condo: Mental States 
The New Museum
Exhibition Ends May 8, 2011

After its presentation at the New Museum in New York, a modified version of this exhibition, organized by the Hayward Gallery, will travel to Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, Rotterdam (June 25–September 25, 2011); Hayward Gallery, London (October 18, 2011–January 15, 2012); and Schirn Kunsthalle, Frankfurt (February 23–May 28, 2012).

New Museum
235 Bowery
New York, NY 10002
George Condo: Mental States Catalogue

The George Condo: Mental States exhibition is accompanied by a 190-page catalogue, produced by Hayward Publishing. George Condo: Mental States, the book, features essays by Ralph Rugoff, Director, Hayward Gallery; Laura Hoptman, Curator, the Museum of Modern Art and former Kraus Family Senior Curator at the New Museum; as well as the novelists Will Self and David Means.
The catalog is only available at the New Museum Store.
Published by New Museum; 2011; Hardcover; 11" x 11.75"; 168 pp; 125 color images + 16 additional images exclusive to the New Museum exhibition; ISBN 9781853322891 Non Member Price $50.00

My highlights of SOFA, NY art fair
Wexler Gallery, Philadelphia &
Joanna Bird Gallery, London

Wexler Gallery, Philadelphia
Wexler Gallery features glass works by emerging and mid-career artists along with historic pieces by the pioneers of the contemporary glass movement.

Wexler Gallery 
201 North 3rd Street // Philadelphia pa 19106
 P: 215 923 - 7030 F: 215 923 - 7031

Joanna Bird Gallery, London

Joanna Bird is an international art dealer and consultant with over thirty years’ experience in the art world as a practitioner, agent and gallerist. She is much in demand as a curator and consultant, and works with exciting talents and contemporary ceramicists worldwide.
For her many high profile clients, Joanna acts as an agent for the purchase or commission of the best contemporary art. She specializes in the site-specific display of craft ceramics and glassware.
An artist passes, what do you do with their art?
Jamillah Ausby of Brooklyn, New York wrote to artist and blogger Robert Genn, ("My husband, the abstract artist Ellsworth Ausby, passed on March 6th. I have a lot of his art which I would love to sell.... I plan to clean out his studio, take photos, set up a web site and hopefully I'll find a dealer or a gallery to sell his work.")

Robert replied about how to deal with this situation in his blog.  paraphrased here
(Jamillah's situation is similar to many artists' beneficiaries when the main thrust of the artist's life work was not in the commercial gallery system. Their credentials may be great, but their prior interaction with commercial galleries may be limited. Often, it's difficult to understand that dealers are usually not looking for an explanation of why the art has conceptual depth or artistic creativity. 

What most galleries ARE looking for in art:
* Marketability. 
*A large and consistent opus of work.
*A degree of exclusive access to that work for a period of time.
*The potential of higher and higher prices.

This often means your dealer will probably like to take control of the work. If the amounts of money are significant, you should get a lawyer with knowledge of the shenanigans of the art world. A cautious art executor should read The Legacy of Mark Rothko by Lee Seldes.

Further, the idea of putting up a memorial website--heavy on the artist's story and passion, light on commercial considerations--will keep the artist's flame burning bright. The memorial website is the statue of the 21st Century.)
Source: All information in this article came from Robert Genn's website.


Man's First Dessert?

Milk & Honey

I was thinking recently about Milk & Honey as a pleasure I indulge in from time to time and the long history of this combination. It has been used as an expression for abundance and the good life for at least 5000 years. The Bible even mentions the land of Milk & Honey in its first book,

Exodus 3:8 "So I have come down to rescue them from the hand of the Egyptians and to bring them up out of that land into a good and spacious land, a land flowing with milk and honey...." & Ezekiel 20:6 ."..that I would bring them out of Egypt into a land I had searched out for them, a land flowing with milk and honey, the most beautiful of all lands."

Even before man could write, before man was organized into civilized units, even before "mankind", the ingredients of milk and honey were around. Now that is an ancient dessert. Think about it, this is the dessert that the first of our species probably enjoyed and it tastes probably 99% the same today. This simple combination of natural ingredients is delicious and has been ever since there have been bees and mammary glands. INTERESTING!

Below I put together a recipe for the most basic ancient version of Milk & Honey. You can think up your own additions like nutmeg or vanilla. You wll enjoy one of the world's first desserts.

Milk & Honey
For every 
* 10 ounces of whole milk
* 1 generous teaspoon of honey

Heat the milk in a sauce pan, do not boil.
When warm add the honey and stir until the mixture is in solution.
(Add vanilla or nutmeg if desired.)

Serve warm or chilled:
After the milk and honey are in a complete solution they can be refrigerated and served cold.
Until Later,


ARTSnFOOD, All rights reserved. Concept & Original Text © Copyright 2011 Jack A. Atkinson under all International intellectual property and copyright laws. Images © individual artists, fabricators, respective owners or assignees.

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