Episode 90: Ruth Lopez and Tony Fitzpatrick

May 20, 2007 · Print This Article

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Special Correspondent Tony Fitzpatrick interviews Time Out Chicago’s Ruth Lopez about just about everything. It’s an engaging and insightful conversation. Duncan and Richard chime in now and again.

The show closes with further proof that if there is an obscure musical tidbit in Tony’s past, we can find it.



Tony Fitzpatrick

Time Out Chicago
The Reader
Fred Camper
Chicago Tribune
Version Festival

Deb Sokolow
Hyde Park Art Center
Olympic Games
Michael Bloomberg
Millenium Park
Cloud Gate
Donald Young
Bodybuilder & Sportsman
Tattoo Gallery

Armory Show
Paul Klein
Wesley Kimler
Stray Show
Paul Morris
Matthew Marks

Takashi Murakami
Robert Crumb
Vanessa Del Rio
Richard Gray
David Klamen
The Art Institute of Chicago
Dan Devening
Zak Prekop
Martin Prekop
Museum of Contemporary Photography

Hans Hoffman
KN Gallery
Alfedena Gallery
Edward Gorey

DePaul Museum of Art
Corbett vs. Dempsey
John Corbett
I- Space
Old Gold
David Bowie
Kehinde Wiley
The Whitney Biennial
Giorgio Morandi
Marlene Dumas
Peter Schjeldahl
Damien Hirst
Wes Mills
John Graham
Alfred Jensen
Joseph Cornell
Kurt Schwitters
Louise Bourgeois
Carl Hammer
Rhona Hoffman
The Clayton

Camille Rose Garcia
Mike Kelley
Ed Ruscha
Steve Earle
Direct download: Bad_at_Sports_Episode_90_Lopez-Fitzpatrick.mp3

210 Responses to “Episode 90: Ruth Lopez and Tony Fitzpatrick”

  1. Good job at making the small Chicago art world even smaller by naming the Tribune, TimeOut, Sharkforum, and BaS as the only 4 outlets for reflection on the scene. There is also a steady output from the venerable Mr. Yood, online reviews at artforum, frieze from London seems to have at least 1 Chicago reciew per issue, locally we also have the Sun Times, NewCity, Lifson (gasp, sorry), and did I leave anything out? It’s great to consult all these outlets, making us bigger, stronger.

  2. Also: F News, Chicago Journal, Centerstage, Art Letter, UR, what else?

  3. The Skokie Shopper

  4. Art in America at two reviews per issue — okay okay I admit that Artforum and Art in America don’t do the amount that Chicago deserves — but some of us are trying to bug them into amplifying that —-

    Nevertheless, Sharkforum and BAS are doing the best to reach out to the world beyong the Greater Chicago area. Now we just need use that to get all the other “outsiders” to see the light and give Chicago attention similar to that they give to LA.

  5. The vulnerable Mr. Yood? That isn’t z very nice thing to say.

    Lifson shouldn’t count that guy spends the bulk of his time talking to the audience and guests like they are small children. His style on the radio is dreck.

    UR is pretty swell, and they seem to be trying to improve their place in the scheme of things.

    They also forgot Artletter. Paul is still an interesting voice even if he does sell TVs.

  6. Ann Onymous Says:


    You chucklehead, Artletter WAS mentioned by Jamaica.


  7. i would add art papers (sort of). they usually have a review of chicago work, although i would like to see more. this month was david schutter (of body builder and 12x12ness). maybe chicago needs to start something like shotgun review (see last bad at sports episode). i think that is a really great resource and would get a lot more chicago voices heard.

    there’s also the chicago journal and the chicagoist sometimes has online reviews.

  8. I’m with you on a centralized “Shorgun Review” section for Chicago — after listening to BAS last episode I went and checked it out and it is a great idea.

  9. Hey Duncan, do you think that maybe part of the fun in a place like Donald Young is it’s churchy reverance? I am not sure I would want all my art spaces to become unintimidating.

  10. katie sehr Says:

    rock on tony. rock on!

  11. JMW,

    I was thinking about that while I was in LA this weekend. Actually I think it is part of the “fun” of Donald Young’s Space. It is their way of signaling you that you are too revere the things you are seeing and there by situate them (in your mind) as important artifacts of this age. Absolutely, your correct.

    I will say this, the Chinatown galleries and the Culver City Galleries make DYG and Body Builder look like the most helpful and friendly galleries known to humankind and for that I love them. I will never feel uncomfortable there ever again. Although, I will still be a little shy.

    I do feel like it rather limits the audience that will participate in art though. Most people like to be welcomed and made to feel somewhat at ease and maybe a little flattered. I mean come on, even priest try to make you feel welcomed before you are humbled by the sublime nature of the “Lord”.

    I think that for younger and mid-range galleries, friendly might not hurt. But if I was Matthew Marks, I would want my space to dwarf and subjugate the people who walked through it’s door. (If you are already a willing supplicant it is easier to convince you of the brilliance of what you are about to see. Or it “allows” you to give yourself over to the experience, both mental and visceral, that you are about to have or share, and thus it is far more rewarding.) But then again who wants to admit to being an upstart or mid-range. So fuck it, let our chosen alienation begin. We are aesthetes, after all, what better to subjugate ourselves too.


    Thank you for the correction. We apologize to those fine outlets you have mentioned. All of us at one time or another have really enjoyed the publications you mentioned.

    I differ in the opinion that we should be satisfied by the current state of things. But that is me. I personally return to Elkin’s summation of the state of criticism in general as (paraphrasing) “maybe the criticism you get is the criticism you want”. I personally want more… I believe that this is a community no less interesting or vital than LA’s. We as this community choose not to play on a global stage. We choose to be like Kansas City or Minneapolis and consistently play little brother. We choose to look to our gate keepers as the only way to access the world outside and we generally choose to leave the moment something starts to “happen” for us. I personally don’t want to feel like that is the only way. There are other points of connection and we as this community can make our own bridges and find our own networks of support and participate in the international art world and not just have it brought here by our fine museums. I feel journalism, criticism, and essays are vital in that push and feel we need more.

    I wish you would not see this show or any of the comments expressed as being attempts to make us smaller but as calls to action. Tony’s solution may not be your solution, nor will it be mine, but I want more visibility, more commitment to our practices and a developed set of concerns that reminds everyone that this is a global and cultural city, not just another place between LA and NYC.

    Once again, I apologize on behalf of the show to the fine media outlets we missed while we were making sweeping generalizations. I would also like to reiterate our feelings of affection toward the job Ruth Lopez does, the way that she does it, and the major place she plays in the community.


    You’ve got me leaving Shark length posts. Fuck. I’m going to go make something.

  12. Well JMW it might do you well to remember the ferocity at which The Shark attacks the making of oil painting -while he is dining on certain nefarious entities that unfortunately people our art world here…sharks excel at multi-tasking…

    having said this -I agree with you on much of what you say above -quite excellent…..I was just in LA myself over the last few days -a place where I lived, worked and exhibited for five years in the late 80’s -early 90’s….

    I went first and foremost to attend the opening of a brilliant exhibition -actually more of a cornation of the new king of concentric painting -that would be Don Suggs -with his brilliant new exhibition at LA Louver ‘Concentric’..running concurently with his 30 year survey exhibition at Otis College of Art and Design -Don Suggs- One Man Group Show.

    Next on The Shark’s agenda was visiting with The Shark of Venice -the ageless, great painter Ed Moses -one of The Sharks pals and, heroes…

    Visiting with my friends at Louver, renewing my ties there, I was once again reminded of what a real gallery, professionally run is actually like. There is not a single comparable situation here in Chicago. Here is a gallery that with a mixture of local LA artists and bigger international names, mounts serious, world class exhibitions (upstairs from Don’s exhibition is a Leon Kossoff drawing show -that is absolutely wonderful)….the effort that is made, documented records of exhibitions that are kept..an actual archivist!…ads that are taken! catalogs that are printed!…not to mention the actual space of which the gallery consists…..nothing to be found here in Chicago even remotely comes close…I’ve never had a problem giving this gallery 50% why? THEY EARN IT!

    Coverage here…..yes Ruth does a terrific job -with the one minor glitch -that being the fawning, ubsequious Erik Wenzel from Art no, Idiocy is more like it……..do us all a favor Ruth, lose this simpering clown…..I think Tony is way off base with his notion theat Time Out has won anything -The Reader is suffering from Craigs List and other online entities….

    Coverage here -I’m not so concerned with local -its ok we all are aware of each other -is it as good as with theater -where Hedy Weiss and Chris Jones promote as well as critque? Well, no it is not -granted. But yet, -its international where we really have a problem- Artforum, Art In America, Modern Painters -the level of coverage is pathetic…Art In America features for us here, an incompetent and a bought and paid for bureaucrat -as for Art Forum, Mr unctuous himself Jim Yood -who really needs to get over being so pleased with himself, and yes talking to an imaginary audience of apparently infatuated children, and do some actual work writing about the scene here -something he has basically neglected for the last 20 years or so…and an occaisonal review by Michelle Grabner….better go look at those Suggs concentric paintings Michelle….and then either swim really fast or get out of the water…as for what I have seen her choose to write about……not so good. Perhaps more expedient than anything…

    I think we really have an opportunity to use the internet in a way different from any other major city -precisely because of the stranglehold of a few here, their towering mediocrity thus the dynamic it has created and the fact that we have this affordable, doable way to create international access/ infrastructure for ourselves -artists taking the lead, being apex in our environment.

    Sharkforum is pleased to announce Doug Harvey art critic LA Weekly, will be joining The Sharkpack as a regular contributer and, editor.

  13. I suppose it would be wrong not to acknowledge that Art In America is now apparently taking some positive steps with a new Chicago correspondent -Kevin Nance.

  14. “I believe that this is a community no less interesting or vital than LA’s. We as this community choose not to play on a global stage.”

    Wise words, Duncan. As I keep insisting as the “insideandoutside” Shark-member, it IS A CHOICE. Now make the choice to be international and let’s run with it. Wesley and I and the other Sharks and TonyF and BAS have begun, we just need more of you to come along!

    Also, I’m doing one review of a Chicago show at Art in America, Jon Rajkovich at Lisa Boyle. I’ll do one each time I get to Chicago. It won’t be much, but it is intended as symbolic — That is to help point out how easy it is to do them on a national and international stage.

    BY the way, “political” cartoons are underway concerning teh artworld created in collaboration by Steve Hammann and I — coming soon!

  15. Duncan, Mark -yes……look at some of the things we are doing -the work that is happening around Chicago -the non-consensoriat scene -the one that has been continually stifled by the conceptual 101 / institutional cabal….lets bring them down at the same time we raise the game here -its really the same difference….question authority –like the Driehaus farce for instance…how much fun is it shining the lite on this stuff and watching the curatoroaches run for cover-

  16. I agree… Let’s not make anymore art.

  17. Word Nerd Says:

    Or anymore grammar.

  18. And lets’ make silly comments, clearly indicating that we can hardly read for content, and then use a cute “handle” instead of our own name. (With lots of typos, if I’m doing it.)

  19. BTW, I finally listened to the whole show straight through, while walking my dogs in the mountains. IT is WONDERFUL. I could listen to TonyF for hours. Ruth had some great comments and insight. No wonder Time Out is doing well on the fine art scene. (Just get some more writers up to your caliber RL!)

    Thanks for a great show, BASies!

  20. Honoré de Balzac Says:

    I agree, this was a stellar discussion, I enjoy Ruth’s work at Time Out and it was delightful to hear her perspective expounded on in a conversational way.

  21. Interesting discussion about art coverage in Chicago, Artropolis, and the art community in general. Tony: Ruth did not finish several of her thoughts in the beginning. I know she had slightly differing opinions and all, but….
    Both Tony and Ruth and everyone else who listened: It seems that there’s some massive misinformation about the Chicago Artists’ Coalition’s involvement with the Artist Project. Where did it originate? When discussing this type of stuff with such certainty, at least be certain of the facts. WE DID NOT MANAGE the Artist Project. We were the beneficiaries of the opening benefit, just like Best Buddies were the beneficiaries of Art Chicago, and the MCA used to be the beneficiary of Art Chicago years ago. I was asked to give advice about the name of the show (which I did), marketing ideas, booths, set-ups, etc. Having had experience organizing artist fairs and having curated some in the past, I gave some ideas about those aspects. We also advertised the show, sent out call for entries, and promoted the concept as much as possible, as did Paul Klein. We were 4 jurors selecting the artwork to be included in the Artist Project – I was very adamant that the quality of the artwork should be the only criterion for inclusion and my grading reflected that, although not everyone on the panel agreed with me.
    Tony: why do you think that the Artist Project needs to be open to all artists regardless of their representation status? I wasn’t sure why you felt that it would have been a better show necessarily. What about the price? Do you think that that might have contributed too? If you ask the Artist Project participants, they were very happy with the event and the opportunities it offered. They made connections, and some sales. For many artists, that is what is important. For others, being picked up by a major gallery is what is important. And yet for others, it is the actual creation of the work that is of import. So, let’s defer to the artists participating. If some don’t want to participate, they don’t have to.
    For all the talk about empowering artists to do for themselves, it’s too bad that there is such expressed contempt for those who are not perceived to be doing a job reaching the level considered adequate by the “alternative gatekeepers”. We are all gatekeepers in some way, if it is against the establishment or in conjunction with it. We allow those we consider like us, or demonstrating our standards of excellence, in, and keep the others out. I think we should recognize that. Ruth mentioned it slightly – we are more or less at war with one another, hoping that the winner gets to represent CHICAGO ART and be the spokesperson. Or am I totally off?
    Also, I do want to add that the Chicago Artists’ Coalition’s newspaper, Chicago Artists’ News, is currently the only publication in Chicago dedicated to arts coverage and art issues affecting the art community locally and regionally (we also have correspondents from NY, LA, and Europe). Yes, at this point you must be a member to get it, or pay $1.50 per issue (just like TimeOut, albeit monthly). We are also starting an art journal in late 2008 – it’ll be published 3 times per year. It would be appreciated to recognize this contribution, and help us move it forward. We do want ideas for improvement (expressed gently people, my skin isn’t very thick yet).
    Ok, I have lots more to say but no more time. Gotta get some work done too. I love TimeOut, and yes, I think it is obvious that it has won (Ruth: the guy who interviewed me and might have given out this false info had not done his homework, although I tried to inform him as much as possible, but maybe it did not stick), love the exchange of ideas (although i do like a less dictatorial approach, which I have seen so much of on all the major blogs lately). OK, fire away. Just don’t kill me.
    -Olga Stefan
    Chicago Artists’ Coalition

  22. Honoré de Balzac Says:

    It’s all love here Olga.

  23. Here’s another recent addition to the Chicago Blogging art Interview/Review sites

  24. Olga, I think you meant to say you were one of four jurors; there were three other jurors who are not from the CAC. It’s unfortunate that a few use “CAC” as synonymous with whatever it is they perceive as sub-standard art. Only around 160 artists (Paul’s number from art letter) submitted for the Artist Project; even assuming allowing currently represented artists to apply would have made more than a marginal difference in the numbers, from the sounds of it, the decision to exclude currently represented artists was a MART decision.

  25. It was definitely a MART decision. At an informational meeting for the Artist’s Project they made it clear that this year only unrepresented artists would be able to participate as they had already begun marketing that way. So obviously investors and galleries consulting the MART had the final say this year. What they’ll have to learn for next year is that not all representation is created equal, and that landscape paintings, that would look great at the Wells Street art fair, do not transition well to an international art exposition.

  26. from how I understand it, the decision to include only non-represented artists and to use The Artist Project proceeds to benefit the CAC was an ‘early’ decision -made before the mart people had a clear grasp of the art world here and elsewhere-

    I think both decisions were mistakes -that hopefully will be remedied next year.

    the CAC is an organization of artists who don’t cut it plain and simple. The work is substandard.

    -I will suggest to the Merchandise Mart people that a far better way to support the scene here will be to help BAS and Sharkforum and other sites defray operating costs.

    Also, to help the fair become truly world class, I will use whatever influence I have to open the project up to all artists. The fact is, in this art world, if you are halfway decent and want representation, you can easily find it.

    I thought there were perhaps 5 or 6 professional quality participants in the Artist Project this year. This is unfortunate, as I see this part of the fair as an exciting component- in terms of its potential; -that as criteria for inclusion, this thing should be about excellence.

  27. Love Handles Says:

    “Mark Staff Brandl May 22nd, 2007 at 6:12 am
    And lets’ make silly comments, clearly indicating that we can hardly read for content, and then use a cute “handle” instead of our own name. (With lots of typos, if I’m doing it.)”

    You mean like “THE SHARK” ?

  28. ‘Love Handles’ -well that kind of says it all -The Shark is usually on point, precise and, about content -if you had half a brain you would get that.

    The art world is a stupid place, peopled by idiots -such as yourself. As Robert Hughes noted -good art gets made in spite of the art world – moronic and insipid comments like your just underline that fact.

  29. Ok, forget working – I just have to address the Shark cause that’s so not cool: The CAC has 2300 members. We are NOT an organization that curates, or selects artists for inclusion based on the quality of their artwork. WE ARE A SERVICE ORGANIZATION!!!!!!! We serve (and in this case maybe should protect too). How do we serve? Well, you could find out….http://www.caconline.org/default.asp?page=services
    We are trying to be more inclusive, not less inclusive. More inclusive means including you too, Wesley, although I see how uninterested you are and will probably have to give up that idea. We want to represent within our membership the diversity of ideas that exist here in Chicago, and to a great extent we do. Some of the better known artists in the city are members, and although you might think that they are not your equal, Wesley, they are still Chicago’s greats. Certainly we have lots of work to do to engage younger and more experimental artists, and we will.
    Also, what do you mean “use Artist Project proceeds to benefit the CAC”? You must be kidding. NOOOOOOO, the proceeds from applications went to the MART for marketing, and all the other costs. We just got $2000 from the Opening Night party after buying the wine (BTW, Wesley, did you buy a ticket? I saw you walking around, said hello, and you walked the other way. Nice…)
    Lastly, why do the Artist Project participants have to measure up to your standards of quality? There were 4 jurors in total. OK, say you think my taste sucks. Paul was on the panel, and 2 others whose tastes are well regarded. It was a very basic grading system. Hopefully more will apply next year. More choice.

  30. King Stitt Says:

    ruh roh….

    oh not she diint!

    good luck Olga.

  31. “and you walked the other way. Nice…)”……errrrrrrrr -that would be ‘swam’ the other way- actually, if I did happen to miss you Olga, the perceived slight was unintentional, and actually, I believe I did say hello.

    from what I heard, there were slim pickings for the project this year -hopefully that will change for next year -Tony Fitz and I both agree on the importance of all artists being eligible for The Artist Project -for me however, unlike Tony, the way it was configured this year was not a deal breaker-

    though there may be some ancillary benefits to belonging to the CAC, for the most part, artists exhibiting under the auspices or involved with this organization seem to be at the Old Town Art Fair level-

    sorry Olga -its not my fault, its the way it is

  32. Erik Wenzel Says:

    I have to hand it to Olga. You have major balls for calling out Wesley “The Shark” Kimmler. Most people avoid arguing for wariness of the sound and fury that ensues. I am one of them. So I applaud you in concisely and reasonably addressing his bullshit.

    “Don’t say anything, that’s what he wants. He wants an argument and a platform,” we all think. And it is true. But more power to you Olga, your responses are intelligent and well thought out.

    I am sure we will soon be subjected to a tirade or “Shark Attack” as he likes to call it. But we can always just not read it.

  33. Shark, dismissing the work of every artist belonging to the CAC in one brushstroke is crap, a non-sequitor, and not particularly productive for the Chicago arts community or to make any of the points you are want to make about the Censuriat gatekeepers. The CAC does not exist to select, exhibit and/or promote the work of particular artists. Rather, it is a service organization and provides valuable information and resources to artists, both those starting out and those who have worked at art for a long time, and has for 30 years, working to improve the environment in which artists live and work.

    You’re right, Michael: not all representation is created equal. Some of it is really not much more than being unrepresented. I think the only exclusion for the Artist Project, in the end, must have been currently represented (which I assume means in an ongoing contractual relationship and not simply included in a show in a gallery) — perhaps even currently represented in Chicago — as I believe (from blogs) that some artists exhibiting in the Artist Project had representation in the past or are represented in other cities. The distinctions may not have been all that clear to artists when they were considering applying; so perhaps greater clarity might have helped. I suspect the $1000 probably was a more significant deterrent to applying ( to which one would add other exhibition costs), both because it’s a lot of money and because artists do not want a “vanity” stigma, along with the fact that the first year of the Project inevitably had artists taking a wait and see approach.

  34. Erik Weasel -I mean Wenzel….now what was that crappy, snide remark you made about Tony Fitz on Art or Idiocy?…hmmmmm what an interesting moment it will be when your creepy little self runs in to Tony, I am looking forward to the entertainment factor of that pending event.

  35. This is so addictive…Yikes, I will have to extract myself from this chair and go home at some point. This new way of communicating by blogging…Isn’t it alienating? I know it’s easier, but I feel weird. Anyway, enough about me. I’m just not used to it.

    Wesley, can I call you sharkie? It’s cuter. Anyway, it’s true that artists that have not reached a certain level of professionalism might need more support, but the services that we provide are really varied and can be very beneficial for everyone. Not everyone uses every service. But our newspaper is getting better, and we will start doing cool stuff online too, so my idea is to not give up on us. We are active and we want to be meaningful in today’s art community, which we need to recognize is very multi-faceted. The reason that Chicago has such a vibrant art community is precisely because there are so many different types of artists, including those that bring in the masses of visitors at Old Town Fair. This is all part of the art community. Wait, how does it go? It’s the economy, stupid? (I’m just quoting Clinton, don’t bite my head off…)

  36. Olga -I guess we are having our phone conversation here online -as you probably are aware, the head of your board -Dr Jerome Hausman is one of my closest and oldest friends and, a major collector of my work. The ancillary befits of CAC are programs that can be benifical to many artists -insurance, grant forms etc……having said this, the artists who gather around your organization as a way to have their work seen in public, are almost uniformly ‘not there’…

    I am not trying to be mean about this -. Weasel Erik Wenzel the self titled ‘artist extraorinaire’ -have you seen his work?…will try to turn this exchange into something that works as a platform for attacking me on his way to kissing the behinds of people he think will forward his cause. (Ruth -as your good friend, I say get rid of this guy -I’m sure Tony Fitz concurs with me-) I will remind people -sharkforum 1.8 million hits in April -Doug Harvey -LA Weekly’s art critic -is joining us -due to how much he likes what is being said and how it is being said…..need I say more?

  37. I still prefer a phone conversation…and looooove coffee. What do you say, Sharkie? My treat. Also, since we are tossing around figures: we, http://www.caconline.org, got 2.5 million hits in April and 1.8 million so far in May. We also have 8,250 registered users. So, there….But you know, hits are really not the way to count traffic. You need to focus on the individual visits.

    And, I think that Sharkforum is cool, I just wish there were less anger in the whole damn art community. It’s like we’re all sharks fighting for that bloody piece of the Chicago art community. The strongest shark survives. Why is this a mandatory model? Strength is in numbers, right?

    Ok, Sharkie, let’s talk on the phone. Even if you don’t want to talk, I’m sure you’ll need a drink at some point (coffee, tea, diet coke, something….) I am lifting myself off this chair and going to see the sun…Good night and good luck!

    BTW, he’s not the head of our board….But we dig him. He’s funny.

  38. Look, the thing for CAC to do is scuttle its website for showing art and, its tendency to be a gathering place for Old Town Art Fair quality artists. Its no secret this is the deal and has been for decades.

    If you want to creat an artist services organization that provides access to health insurance/information/grant applications etc -great….where you dilute and negate any potential is in offering any forum for artists on your site -due to your complete inclusiivity Olga, yopu get everything….which leads to the now notorious egalitarian beige mush The Shark rails against.

    To quote Ruth Lopez, “is there anyone more vociferous about art in this city than Wesley Kimler? Maybe not.” And this, is true. I am a proponent of intelligent, well thought-out subversion. I do not support obsequious social climbers -kissing the behinds of the powers that be here -like Art or Idiocy -as supporting the people this little twit supports is tatamount to being an art world Tory -suppporting those who have presided over the demise of and the provincialism of the Chicago art world since the late 80’s.

    As for CAC…I’ve said my piece -it happens to have become a repository for a lot of mediocre work hence, workers -if Olga want to be taken seriously, she needs to dismantle the parts of that program that embraces mediocrity.

  39. Dude, whatever.
    Wesley, OK, you don’t like me. You think I am some sort of evil person that supports the evil views of other, more evil people and therefore we must all be destroyed. All right, I get it. I think anyone who reads all this gets it too. So you can stop. You made your point.

    That said, I’m going to continue to have my own opinions and write about things I am interested in writing about. And I will write about them in the manner in which I choose, it is my right.

    There is only this point to address: I really don’t appreciate you threatening me with physical harm and publicly attempting to get me fired. Because be honest, that is what you are doing. And that seriously crosses the line.

    I’m done commenting, I will save what things I have to say for my own blog. Anyone can chose to read it, or not. As always, if anyone has an issue with something I have written, or an opinion I have expressed, feel free to contact me via email.


    Take care

  40. physical harm? what, so now you are hallucinating yourself into being a victim? Look Erik -your snarky comments about Tony Fitzpatrick on your blog -are issues you can work out with the man himself. It has zero to do with me, though I am sure to find it all highly entertaining. Maybe you shouldn’t be such a little punk saying crappy things about people if the results make you feel threatened…… When you have taken me out of context and posted derogatory garbage about me on your site -as we both know, I have contacted you privately -to discuss your mistake- cutting you way more slack than you deserve or warrant.

    As far as getting you fired -hey ‘Dude’ to use your term -you aren’t hired to be fired -you freelance on occaison at Time Out and you know what? I have no problem telling my good friend Ruth Lopez I think she can do better, that your typical SAIC hipster drivel, uninformed and clueless when it comes first of all to painting and/or aesthetics in general, is a substantial distance below the standards Ruth herself sets for her section, and does us artists here in Chicago, a disservice. I have a very good hunch Tony Fitz and significant others feel exactly the same.

  41. That the CAC offers artists the ability to start/maintain a web presence if they choose and develop some level of audience for their particular work does not change the basic services that the CAC provides. Sigh, this is what I meant by a non-sequitor — the concept that the CAC as an service organization that does not tie the services it provides to artists to reaching some particular level of validation or imprimature of professionalism somehow is embracing one form of artist or art over another and ought to jettison inclusiveness to alter the place of the Chicago in the international art scene. Neither the CAC — nor even the Old Town Art Fair and similar venues which serve a similar niche of the public that buys art — are the relevant target in the debate over Chicago’s place in the international art scene. I’ve seen plenty of medicocre sameness hanging on gallery walls.

  42. Honoré de Balzac Says:

    I’d say “Can’t we all just get along” but I know the answer and I hate redundancy.

    Both Erik and Wesley could stand to bash away at their fellow artists less. Although I have to say at least Wesley is upfront about it, Erik you’ve taken some cheap shots and then removed the ensuing discussion from your blog. Need I bring up Paul Klein.

    All that aside, the funny thing is, is that everyone posting here actually gives a shit about art so we are proving the one of the major points of this weeks show, Chicago loves to break into tiny little packs and fuck-all-else if you don’t see things this way or that way.

    If bad at sports has managed to do nothing else they have covered Chicago without getting bitchy about a whole lot, or signing on to a team, with the possible exceptions of their ill explained loathing of Ed Lifson and deserved joking about Rashid Johnson, who frankly really sucks and deserves all the negative press anyone can give him. Whatever happened to that joke, it should return to the show.

    SO, seriously lets band together, create more resources for the community. CAC is a nice site, and I like their newsletter. I wish more people participated in the site, it is a bit of a ghost town, but the idea is a positive one.

    Join together, come up with new methods or raising the profile of this burg.

    Wesley and Erik, I will gladly start a collection for your favorite charities if you two square up in the proposed “Fight Night” that Industry of the Ordinary was talking about hosting.

    For that matter I want to see the bad at sports folks offer themselves for pummeling, I know a few folks would sign on for that.

  43. As a matter of fact, now that I think about it; Dear Ruth, go to art or idiocy and read ‘artist extraordinaire’s shit comment about Tony -and then, let me remind you of how Erik took a quote of mine – describing Ed’s great generosity in helping me, another artist get a commission, and twisted this into trying to say I used the context to discuss myself ….when in fact I was discussing what an unselfish, great friend I and others had just lost…..a completely fucked thing to do.

    Ruth we do deserve better than this fawning little sycophant -I do urge you to lose him from the pages of Time Out.

    -why not ring up Tony and get his take on it as well-

  44. Well Balzac, I have given ‘Erik’ way more attention than he deserves…….read what I actually say about CAC -a group btw that I -no doubt unlike most people on this site, have actually addressed and lectured to -(before your time Oga)….CAC needs to redefine itself, and lose a portion of what it is in my opinion, to have any credibility-

    as for chomping on people -the Shark eats out of necessity -never due to malice. My attacks -like Night of the General on Sharkforum for instance, are principled arguments within, philosophical context, points of view. I attack with reason.

  45. (before your time Olga) -pardon my typing-

  46. Honoré de Balzac,

    Thank you Sir. I perfer not to get in the ring with anyone, as I’m a tad bit delicate. Ah fuck it, why not? Wait before I agree, who wants some?

  47. Michael "Droopy NutsSack" Workman Says:

    Hey, hey HEY. What a fart-stench mess. I mean, you’re all good peeps. Despite the “allegiances,” I’m sure there’s something that everybody in the community likes about what each of you are doing, Wenzel, Kimler, Mr. “the Sack.” No need for histrionics. Chill pill time. We may muss each other’s hair once in awhile, but that’s pure Chicago, right? I personally know and like all of you and think there’s merit in all these perspectives, no matter how hard they are to glean from the diametrically opposed other side. Except Richard Holland. I can’t stand that gigantic, gaping whore of pure assholery!



  48. Michael Workman….nice of you to attempt the arbitrator -but not this time-art or idiocy boy obviously trying to score points with a certain sector of the art world here and aparently -and completely erroneously perceiving some kind of linkage between Paul Klein, Tony Fitz and myself -has in his petty snarky manner taken shots at all three of us- its all pretty transparent -the last thing we need is more of his fawning, and obsequious garbage promoting the status quo -a failed status quo! Lets face it, one Andrew Patner is enough for any place.

    How many bad writers must we tolerate?….Look, the whole CACA crew was a disaster, thank god they are finished! we now have Time Out -The Sun Times -the Tribune and all the blog sites to give us local infrastructure..I mean is anyone really pining away for the days of Fred Camper?….

    I’m just suggesting to Ruth Lopez -that she replace this clowns occaisonal review with someone better -it can’t be that difficult to find someone -anyone- sheeeeesh!

  49. Dee anyway you cut it, looking at the website the CAC provides will quickly disabuse anyone of the notion that what is up there is anything other than pretty amateur work-

    having said this -I do agree with you CAC is not really part of the problem with whats going on here in Chicago in terms of the art world here being more ‘international’ -namely because CAC is really not particularly relevant.

    I also agree with you -that what one often finds on gallery walls here is mediocre sameness…art attempting consensoriat approbation is more often than not, the culprit.

  50. Richard Holland Says:


    Guilty as charged.

    Wesley, I agree the day Michael attempts to be an arbitrator is a dark day indeed!

    What has the effect been on Fred Camper with the brutal hacking and slashing of the Reader’s coverage?

    Duncan, you are delicate, best not to start shit, you’ll get hurt.


  51. Richard Holland Says:

    “Wait before I agree, who wants some?”

    Jeanne Dunning would kick your ass Duncan. Seriously.

    Lets see….who else would sign on…I’ll come up with a list….

  52. Hey — I’ve tried posting here three times, and each time it appears and then disappears. Do you have a mystical voodoo force shield out against me?!!

    As I keep trying to say:

    1. I was a part of the Artists Project and had a great time, sold a lot, made many good contacts, loved the artist contact,

    am a GREAT artist,

    with some renown, and usually with representation (which is not all it is cracked up to be by beginning artists), …

    2. AND …… I believe the AP MUST be re-imagined dramatically.

    3. Olga — Wow! You’ve got guts. As I remember you and I differed more over the quality of Chicago’s critical “opportunities.” See people, she argued with ol’ Sharky, as I often do, and he hasn’t killed us yet, so quit the chirping about that he “intimidates” people into not talking. He only intimidates scardy cats and stirs up those who actually hate his telling of the truth, as far as I can see.

    4.Erik — you can’t make snide comments like you did about Tony F or “retarded” comments like the Klein thing and then criticize others for doing the same. I think you THINK you are a defender of somethingorother, but you come across as more of a Wanna-Be-Consensus-Houseboy than I think you realize. Look in the mirror first, then attack.

    5. Yes, I know I’m kind of an asshole too in attacks — although not everyone sees that because my writing and speaking style are simply more amusing, and because, being in the Sharkpack, I am then compared to Wesley, which makes me look like a friendly, civil type in comparison. But really I’m not. If you catch me being too aggressive, please tell me, them I will yell at you and deny it.

    6. Don’t forget that in Wesley’s attacks is always an eye for quality, and much forgotten central point of art.

    7. I guess we cannot be nice — but that is NOT all bad! Here in Europe everybody tends to be “nicey-nice” “kissy-kiss” then does the complaining secretly. Doing it in the open is the Chicago, and American, way and frankly I find it refreshing.

    8. That said, to get back to the content of the show, make a CHOICE to be international, and proudly Chicagoan (no Malinchismo), make HIGH quality art, stop being obsequious and take friendly enough so that we can argue about CONTENT, but not so friendly as to make everything “okay.”

    9. So maybe there were only a handful of good and active artists in AP — was it really much different in the main show? The percentage there was higher in fame, but also rather low on the average in quality. I DO think though that we have to keep coming up with ways to empower artists and get them to take their lives into their own hands and stop kissing ass. Which means such “alternatives” need to be EVEN higher in quality than the main shows if we are to make our vision clearly understood.

  53. You guys started referencing the Rashid Johnson show in the episodes around the 40s and 50s. I tried to download that one (one of the first) and it’s not there. Have you since reposted that show so I can hear your comments about Rashid’s Johnson? Pesonally, I think his work is pretty fuckin good.

    And the show with Erik W. on it was really a chore to suffer through. It sounds like a couple 8th graders in their basement with mom’s tape recorder. Listen to it again. I really couldn’t believe you guys put that one out. Revist the shows with William Conger or james Elkins for example. The information, perspective and general seriousness don’t jibe. Or for loose fun and humor, Hamza Walker. Erik’s site is fine but that interview, well…

    I’ll get in the fight night.

  54. Honoré de Balzac Says:


    Now, now, while I don’t often see things Erik’s way, and I think his dismissal of Bridge was inaccurate, AND I think the Paul thing was utter BS, I do think mean spirited name-calling is not helping anyone. Seriously if you want to attack someone’s intellectual prowess, or position on an issue, I know from you prior posts and bits on the show that you are capable of a solid argument.

    I don’t think we should be nice, but making personally denigrating comments about Erik isn’t helping the dialog.

    Baul Shack baby Baul Shack.

  55. Please read the whole sentence and you’ll see that I am attempting to be nice about it. (But maybe point No. 5 came through too strongly!)

    But I’m afraid THAT was NOT name-calling, it is indeed a truthful statement of my perception. As I said, and I quote, “I think you THINK you are a defender of somethingorother, but you come across as more of a Wanna-Be-Consensus-Houseboy than I think you realize.”

    I think that is true and I think he should consider that. I DID NOT say that he IS in fact that way “in his soul” — for that I cannot vouch. I don’t know him that well. But for every Good Thing on his site (and there are many), there is at LEAST one such “off-hand” comment putting him in that position. Listen to the interview and read between the lines, as well. I suspect he “respects” his former teachers and current employers far too much, to put it extremely delicately for your delicate little ears (eyes? since you are reading this?).

  56. “Wanna-Be-Consensus-Houseboy”

    Sorry Balzac -I think it describes Erik perfectly….

    …Mark, you are one of the handful of good artists who did the project this year -I simply wanted to avoid a list……..

  57. Duncan wants to get in the ring with Jeanne ‘The Spine crushin Machine’ Dunning!!
    Jeanne is gonna bring the shit storm Duncan! You better look out!! Jeanne’s gonna take your Zombie Group Huggin ass and tie it in a neat little bow!

  58. Amy Babinec Says:

    Unrelated to the above:

    Did anyone see this in Sunday’s Chicago Tribune??


    Holy cats!! What century are we in?

    One response: http://blogs.chicagoreader.com/chicagoland/2007/05/21/going-greenhorn/

  59. Hi Jeff — I have all of the episodes and have posted the one with a review of the Rashid Johnson show at Monique Meloche at http://www.dolanart.com/ArtReviewCastGameOn.mp3

  60. Word.

  61. Now, I think a good Jeanne Dunning post is pretty funny but come on she asked me personally to try and cut that stuff out and really… She runs a great school and we should show her some respect.

    That said I’m pretty sure she would rip my face off and where my asshole as a hat.

  62. Shark, I should have written with greater clarity. The CAC is not a relevant target in the context of exhibition because it’s not an exhibition venue (website aside) but having a artist service organization is not irrelevant in the context of infrastructure for artists in Chicago and improving conditions for artists in Chicago. I recall attending a few of Paul’s artists’ meetings about the Chicago Artist Foundation (now Chicago Artist Project, I think) and quite a bit of talk about the need to educate artists on marketing, taking charge of their own futures, etc. — all of which CAC does and which is valuable. I don’t remember Paul or others at that time ever mentioning a litmus test to be able to benefit from or take advantage of these kinds of services. I get that you think offering any ability to show work along with providing services somehow takes away from the services unless the work is screened, but everyone starts somewhere, and the CAC is not about separating the chafe from the wheat, nor as a service organization should it be. Giving artists a place to start — in some cases end — whatever stage they are at does not take away from the value of the services to all artists.

  63. Richard Holland Says:


    NO MORE fake Jeanne Dunning posts. She is not okay with it. And neither are we, I implore you.


  64. Dee -we are somewhat in agreement here -however, due to the fact that the chafe clings closely to CAC -this in turn renders the whole thing suspect……look, most ‘alternative’ art organizations/collectives (and yes, CAC does have a certain collective, egalitarian conceit going on) suffer from the same quality problems your organization does -which is why I have tried to, for my part have Sharkforum be more anarchistic, and, ‘aesthetic’ -like say, Ant Farm was back in the 60’s

    -Olga has contacted me recently, wanting to discuss how to improve CAC; well, first, make it more professional -more abouts the be’s than the wannabes….perhaps change the name so it doesn’t sound so damned commie-

    And second, perhaps re-think how an organization like CAC should function in the cyber/analog world……

    as far as Paul’s CAF -remember Dee, that was a run-amuck version of something Tony Fitz and I started. One of the things that caused it to fall flat on its face was Paul wanting CAF to be all things for all people -with the ‘Cafe’ on the 6th floor -no, wait a minute -that was the 1st floor…my point being, once the inital impetus and ideas -a great many of them mine, were put into a collective like environment, their original dynamics born out of neccesity thus abrogated, it all turned to shit and imploded-

  65. CAF may have imploded as you say because it was trying to do too much, including things that were already being done — ie, lacked focus. Or it may have imploded for other reasons, like lack of capital. Not being involved, I don’t know.

    I am not going to argue whether some members of CAC have a collective attitude on exhibition issues. I don’t. I see service organizations like the CAC addressing barriers to entry that individuals may face, especially individuals starting out, by combining resources of their members(ie, member dues) to make information and resources for proceeding as a professional artist largely available, and leaving it then to the individual artists to use the resources and information in plying their own trade on their own merits, come what will.

    I am curious to learn your ideas for how an organization like the CAC could function better in the cyber/analog world. Perhaps specifics there are something you could share with Olga.

  66. Wesley Kimler Says:

    The SHARK doesn’t have time for specifics!

    Specifics would take time away from the SHARK’s busy schedule being the best, most important, most smartest and most under-appreciated artist in Chicago EVER!; and jousting windmills and paper tigers.

  67. Wesley Kimler isn’t specific only to those too dimwitted to read what he actually has to say, which, almost always deals with and discusses issues via specifics, very rarely given to gross generalization.

    This is the kind of stupid crap we weed out at sharkforum -btw dummy -Night of The General ….my latest article, have you read it? -where is there anything about that particular piece that is not specific? Is there any specific point I bring up there or, in the ongoing discussion here that you would like to offer an opinion on?

    Why don’t you gut up use your real name and answer the question?…..but of course you won’t- cyber cowards never do.

  68. Tigers have an advantage on land …

  69. yes, but sharks never venture forth on land -whereas tiger on occaison do try their paws at swimming…….

  70. Only Wesley Should be posting as Wesley.

    We love the fact that this is an open forum to everyone but if it is abused for childish taunts…

    Well it will be bad. Really bad.


  71. Actually the apex preditor on land and sea is us, Humans. We kicked the shit out of Tigers and Sharks. Mostly do to thumbs, tools and an ability to kill at a distance. We are bad, very bad. So don’t F with humans.

  72. Damn wrong do. due. Stupid blogosphere.

  73. Richard Holland Says:

    Yeah, we’ve always prided ourselves on allowing anonymous posting and having a nice and interesting dialog. Please don’t put us in a position where we have Chistopher delete posts that are posted improperly and require sign-up to post. That will suck.

    I am begging whoever is doing this to cut it out, you will wreck a nice thing if you don’t stop.



  74. Don’t sweat it Duncan -let this dope make himself look stupid- if there is one characteristic, that anyone with half a brain would note, about how I do formulate my arguments, it is that they are always based upon specificity…..if this anonymous fool can’t figure that out -or at least find some better, less insipid way to attack me -then let him flaunt his stupidity.

  75. Yes, silly tigers … I did not realize you hadn’t posted the message under your name and read it as joking around.

  76. Just curious…I posted a reply to your piece on Sharkforum last week and it never showed up. I thought it backed up your point succinctly.

  77. hmmmm? I have been out of town -perhaps I missed it……

  78. It pertained to the Artadia grants. Are you aware these? If not, check out this link to the Chicago awardees and jurors since 2001. It is funded in part by the Dreihaus foundation. I think you’ll wet your pants (uh…or soil your fins) with laughter after reading the lists.


  79. can you re-send over on the forum?

  80. Honoré de Ballsack Says:

    There are some good some bad on the artadia list.

    I wish there were more granting agencies like them.

    It would be nice if there was a centralized location for grant info.

    BAS or SharkForum should house such a thing.

  81. Hi guys, man do you have a lot of time on your hands…back and forth and back and forth. Anyway, I thought I’d take a break and play some ping-pong too. Thanks for the call, Skarkie. I was totally listening, and like I mentioned – there are things that I can implement and some that I can’t due to the nature of the organization (its mission, goals, and what its mandate is from inception). Of course a watchdog group is a great idea, and we have done this for a long time, discussing these poignant issues in the newspaper and sometimes advocating directly to the people in question. The real problem is that we have not yet really made the work that we do widely known – I’m working on it. Help me out here…

    We are doing so many cool things, and will do more. But here’s my principle – I don’t like preconceived ideas nor advancing a specific agenda (except when it comes for encouraging everyone to support Illinois Covered through our mass emails and newspaper). I totally agree, of course, that for Chicago to be an internationally respected cultural center it needs to have several artists that get seen, collected, and talked about throughout the world. And when I say “provide opportunities”, I don’t mean that I believe we are all equally talented, or that everyone deserves a show at Donald Young or wherever. But I totally believe that everyone needs a chance to either make it or break it. If they break it, that’s the nature of how the world turns…And believe me, both the marketplace (which for some is the litmus test for success) and history will be able to judge by themselves.

    Yes, you can certainly argue that this and this rich-man consults with this-and-this fashionable curator and that it is all so wrong, but ultimately the work either holds up or not. People are famous one day and perish another, people are not famous one day, and appear out of nowhere. Or people can have astoundingly profitable careers in their city/country, and mean zilch in another. I mean anyway the artworld is crazy – billions of dollars on a Warhol, whatever. The GDP of some countries is less than that and people are dying of hunger and disease and war all over the freakin’ world. But to us it’s less important than who’s the biggest artist in Chicago…For me that’s provincialism.

    And here’s what I really think is needed here – not necessarily good artists because we’ve got plenty, but media outlets writing about the artists and art happenings occurring here everyday. Yes, blogging is fine, but like all else, what really counts is the newspaper/magazine. The hard archival stuff. The stuff you can feel in your hand…TimeOut is great, but even better will be the Chicago Art Journal, published by the CAC three times per year, with real criticism, commentary, and analysis of the intersection between art, culture, society, economics, and all that good stuff. And we are looking at getting better writers and more interesting articles for the current Chicago Artists’ News. If you’d like to write for us, I’ll look over your writing samples. We compensate decently. Mark Staff Brandl, where are you? You promised me something…

    Ok, so the discourse needs to be turned form who’s the best, to how Chicago can be made relevant to European collectors. Here’s an idea: visibility at Basel and the other major art fairs. OK, all you artists of Chicago unite! Get a booth together (Volta, Armory, all of them) and represent, yo! Just an idea.

  82. Yes, there are some good and bad regarding the awardees. The point is, look at their bios and look at the jurors. Then, go over to the MCA site, look at the 12×12 artists going back to its inception. Again, look at their bios. Read Wesley’s piece on Sharkforum regarding the Dreihaus foundation grant. Do the same… See any kind of pattern? Coincidence, paranoia or curatorially corrupt? Wesley is as right as rain.

    I’d love to see more grant opportunities here as well. But who do think would get ’em?

  83. Here’s a great place to look for grants, and though it’s in New York it’s supported in part by the Chicago Dept. of Cultural Affairs. So go get your tax dollars back!


  84. Obviously, it’s not coincidence. One form of validation leads to another leads to another. Duh. Which is not to say there’s not an issue in how the gatekeeping is being done, the agendas of the gatekeeepers, etc. At least Artadia allows open application; other grants are application by invitation only.

    As for where to look for grant information, how about trying the CAC, the City of Chicago CAR website, artdeadlines, NYFA, etc; there’s a fair bit of overlap between these sources, but it doesn’t take much time to check them. Sadly, there just are not that many grants available for individual artists; foundations tend to prefer to give to organizations.

  85. Richard Holland Says:

    I sure as hell wish someone would write Bad at Sports an f-ing check, this show is expensive to produce.

    Suggestions for funding sources welcome!!!


  86. Come on, cut the bullshit fake posting and use your REAL names! There is some GREAT discussion going here and it will only degenerate into the typical Myspace, my little home page crap if you do such things. NO fake Jeannes and No fake Wesleys or anybody. I suggest that BAS simply delete all those immediately, with a message that fake post was put up and has now been deleted. It is clear Dunning doesn’t want them and doesn’t post here. That’s her right. Just delete anything with her name unless she personally tells you she sent it. Etc.

    Some interesting ideas Olga. Listen to the Shark. I’ll get you something all-theoretical-and-all in the summer. Give me an email directly sometime. Fisrt I have a bunch of other stuff to do until July 1st (some hows, a huge Latin final exam, diss writing, grading my classes in Art History, a cartoon with Hamann, a review for Art in America, a speech, two larger paintings, finish a print, and some more. I promiseeeeeee, but as you see, I’m busy!)

    Thanks for the plug Shark. And for the work being hung at Sharkstock. We gotta extend some of that stuff. And the Olga idea of “getting out” elsewhere as in Basel in a group etc. is great to mull over.

    Hey at least I finally did another short for BAS!

    Balsac-Ballingthejack — you give me and idea —grant info —with criticism of the choices and discussion and compliments and advance info etc. — shouldn’t THAT be a major service at CAC?

  87. Richard Holland Says:

    I agree, that sounds awesome.

  88. Stella Shanks Says:

    why are there so many weird/fake comments about jeanne dunning on BAS?

  89. Richard Holland Says:

    I have absolutely no idea whatsoever. At first we actually thought it was Ms. Dunning but it became readily clear that it was not. She has contacted us and we have agreed to try and prevent the practice. Someone out there thinks they are funny.

    One of those mysteries.

  90. Michael "Droopy NutsSack" Workman Says:

    Speaking of funding for artists…We’re now tossing around ideas for a possible grant program sponsored by Bridge: ideas so far have included awarding a cap of five thou, for instance, for a global travel grant to a Chicago artist and grants to cover booth fees for artist-run and artist collectives galleries to show in the fair. Though at the moment it’s all mere conversation, these kinds of things are very easy for us to do. Any suggestions are welcome.


  91. Michael Workman Says:

    Oops. Meant to drop the sicko nickname. Gone now. Damn conspicuous lack of editing tools!

  92. Ann Onymous Says:

    Your new nickname is the fucking worst thing ever. Wow.

    Two, I love your ideas for Bridge giving back. BAS should host a poll for you or something.

  93. mediocre are the paintings that are hugest in scale here in town. funny, cause i thought ed moses had taste. guess again!

  94. I’ll trust Ed over you ‘Billy’ -his comment to me was -“thwere are about 5 or artists I really respect in this world Wesley -you are one of them”-but then again Ed is a world class painter who would actually know what he is talking about -not a little mediocre, resentful piss ant like yourself-

  95. I’ll trust Ed over you ‘Billy’ -his comment to me was -”there are about 5 or 6 artists I really respect in this world Wesley -you are one of them”-but then again Ed is a world class painter who would actually know what he is talking about -not a little mediocre, resentful little piss ant like yourself-

    now how are you making ends meet?…schlepping other peoples paintings around in a warehouse isn’t that it?……and why would I know that? Easy: all resentful losers like you sound exactly alike and have the same basic job description- funny enough.

  96. We offer a comprehensive listing of grants, fellowships, residencies, etc. If you are a member, our services are almost endless. And we offer access to an emergency fund, through an application process.
    We also conduct workshops on how to write a grant proposal, for those who are not super savvy.
    Workman, go forth with your idea. What are you waiting for? That’s great. And probably extremely basic for the scholarships to Bridge Fair – Blackman used to do this by invitation only type thing.
    But everything of that sort will be divisive because it will exclude another.
    I have also requested that the DCA email/send the CAC all their call for entries for public art commissions.
    Would you guys stop being snobby and actually go to the site and see what we offer? And once you actually see what there is, then comment and provide me with feedback on what we could do more of, but not before. That’s totally useless.
    Also, Michael Pajon: a huge correction is in order. The Department of Cultural Affairs does not fund NYFA, unless it pays some sort of commission to get access to all the content that NYFA publishes. NYFA is the model for CAR, and CAR works with NYFA to get NYFA content onto CAR.

  97. I see what you mean, Michael. I just checked their website to see what you were referring to. They are probably getting $$ from the DCA to access their regional database, and probably beef it up. The CAC has been compiling its list for a while… http://www.caconline.org/default.asp?page=resources

  98. Billy doesn’t work in a warehouse. Billy doesn’t tolerate bullshit, either. Licking ass and taking names to sell oversized noodling to rich people with bad taste is far different than kicking ass and taking names, now isn’t it?

  99. Holy Crap! I leave for Jamaica for a few days and the blog goes crazy!

    True Dat: MLB and I have a kick ass commentary on the art world coming out soon, look for it.

    CAC: I used to be a member, and they are very good at letting up coming artists know how to navigate the “Chicago art world” up to an extent. They provide some good info (via a newsletter/newspaper ) about galleries who are looking for artists, as well as giving artists a website to show their stuff.

    That being said, I’m not a member anymore…

    I do think the Shark is an accomplished artist and deserves respect. Anonymous posters are crap, and are going to get 3X the amount of crap they shovel out.

  100. Billy is pathetic and stupid -first of all anyone with half a brain knows how rigorous and disciplined my paintings are- along with also being gestural -Billy boy is just another punk who doesn’t know what he’s talking about -and sorry Billy boy there are a whole lot of poor people along with a lot of rich people and people in between that seem pretty interested in what I do -so why don’t you take your loser self elsewhere -for the simple reason that you are a bore and sound like every other generic loser who just can’t cut it.

  101. btw -what happened they finally can you from the painting schlepping job? Couldn’t do that either huh?

  102. Ok, I’m getting a little bothered here…. So, I tried to get in on artletter but somehow my registration was “lost” and Paul not able to validate it, so he asked that i register again with a different name (besides my own – Olga) since mine was aldready taken and lost. Whatever…So here’s my beef, which i can’t post there so I’ll just post here. Public art program situation….Again, it seems like I just have to repeat again and again what the CAC is, and yes, it is also an advocacy organization.

    For this issue, here’s what we’re doing: I have emailed the DCA people in question asking them to rethink their position and make the process more transparent, getting all the commissions out to the art community, not hiding them somewhere on their website, and getting a committee in place again. I have also let them know that we will ask all our members and constitutents to contact their aldermen and discuss this issue with them. We are covering it in the newspaper, in the June issue of ArtNews, and in a full-length article in the July/August issue, complete with interviews with Scott Hodes, DCA, Public art commission staff in other states where the model is more transparent, etc.

    It would have been nice for this effort to be coordinated – like i said before, strength in numbers. Meaning, someone could have called me and said, “hey, what can we do TOGETHER for more impact?”. Just another example of how, due to hubris, we are fragmented as a community. Be it.

  103. Duncan -Richard call me immediately -you have a ‘problem’ on your site.

  104. am i a problem, sharkie?

  105. No Olga, there is another situation on the site having to do with ‘Billy’ -not his real name- nor am I his actual target-its being taken care of.

  106. This may be a little off topic, but all of this talk about the CAC made me think of something. Over the years, the CAC has done a lot and still does a lot for Chicago artists. I have noticed though, a negative mentality of some of the members. I attended a couple of the critiques this year and was disappointed at how some of them viewed their work. When shown on the screen, a good number of them apologized for the lack of quality in the images. In each case, they stated that the colors were washed out and spent too much time on apologizing for the poor quality. It was as if they were trying to deflect criticism or were establishing a reason why they can’t get anywhere (“My images suck, so that’s why I don’t get anywhere”). I can’t say for sure why, though, but there was a lot of apologizing for bad images in both critiques. In some cases, it was not necessary because the work was good. It was about the confidence level of the artists in presenting their work.

    In the most recent critique, when my stuff appeared, it seemed to go over well. When I blabbed on about the work, I was stopped by one artist and asked if I noticed a problem with my images. I said “No. There is some ambient light that’s washing out the colors a little, but you get the idea.”

    I guess what I’ m trying to say is that if you are or want to be a professional artist, stand up for your work. Don’t get embarrassed when its displayed before an audience.

  107. highschool antics and insecurities…

  108. “highschool antics and insecurities’…and a stalker, right ‘Billy’?…..

  109. NOTE TO ALL:

    Take the personal shit outside. Seriously.

    Fight, argue, scream, insult, but take personal accusations and grudges somewhere else, I am not interested in that BS here.

    I love you all. I do. But go elsewhere with the personal stuff.


  110. Bill, the CAC Salons are an opportunity for critique, including self critique, for all artists. I was at one salon you intended — the one at the Cultural Center. Some people’s documentation images were not good quality (putting aside the work itself) or could have been improved, and it’s good for those artists to see that, especially since slides/digital documentation is a primary basis on which jurors, etc, will judge/screen the work. I don’t remember if your images appeared washed out or not, but I don’t think you should be taking offense that someone thought they apppeared washed out and commented. As for artists standing up for their work, sure artists should defend their work, but where there is room to learn and improve, they should do so and they shouldn’t be afraid to look for and see places in which they might improve.

  111. William Conger Says:

    BAS is a great forum and the interviews are stimulating and good for the whole art community. The current podcast with Tony Fitzpatrick and Ruth Lopez is terrific. But it’s always an embarrassment when the responding commentary is hijacked and driven into scornful and childish name-calling that has nothing whatsoever to do with the podcast topic.

    I admit I know almost nothing of CAC (but recall providing CAC meeting space when I headed DePaul’s art department in the 70s). Reading Olga’s comment’s here, good-humored and smart in the face of pointless attacks, urges me to suppose that the CAC is good for many artists.

    And Tony and Ruth’s podcast demonstrate that it’s very possible to express tough-minded and yet civil, optimistic, and nuanced thoughts.

    It is also very possible to separate an artist’s effort from his or her work. One can admire the effort but not the work; one can admire the work but not the effort. The aim of criticality among artists ought to focus on making both the art and the effort admirable. As for judgment, which is worthless when accompanied by scornful denunciations and personal insults — or by obfuscatory flattery– it might be good to keep in mind Thierry DeDuve’s comment that regarding the quality of new art, the jury is always still out.

  112. Olga,

    Could you email me at badatsports@gmail.com


  113. Dee — I thought that the artists were overly self-conscious about their work. It seemed that most of them had been working for some time and should be beyond that. I didn’t see any bad work there, despite the image quality. Really, most of the images weren’t that bad. I noticed that the moderator fed off of the insecurity of the artists and became increasingly critical of the work. He seemed to be empowered by the negativity.

    You’re right, though. It is a great opportunity to learn and better one’s presentation. I hope that one of the things that artists learn is to be confident in talking about their work. I’ve been guilty of it many times, myself. We’re our own worst enemies sometimes.

  114. But at least Olga makes CAC seem to be ALIVE — even approaching Wesley and other critics, openly discussing here, arguing etc. I give her some major props here!

    Back when I was in the WIndy City 20 years ago, CAC was a sleepy sleepy group of well-meaning folks who appeared to be more hobbyists than enything else. You keep up the discussion and pushing like this, Olga. More power to you.

    I don’t think BAS’s Blog gets hijacked William — more like it swerves off ever-so-often in childish, anonymous, cowardly attacks, (e.g., yeah you Billy-boy, fake posts, etc., ). But the more serious people here always bring it back. Even when they are sometimes also aggressive (like me, BallZ, Shark, etc.). I find BAS and Sharkforum’s extended battles good for art, thinking about art and taking a bite out of complacency and nicey-nice obsequiousness.

    It is truly illustrative, that those who get most childish and least conten-oriented are clearly those who feel most threatened by actual critical thinking.

  115. Fair enough, Bill. I was happy to see so many new faces at the salon at the Cultural Center; I hope more artists continue to come to the salons. I think the next one with Dan Addinton moderating at his gallery June 14 (info on CAC’s website). I do think artists should show confidence — and coherence — in talking about their work (if they won’t, how can they expect others to do so); by coming to the salons, I hope practice makes perfect for those who are less comfortable. I thought in general the moderator’s comments at the Cultural Center were apt and constructive, whether he was empowered by negativity of not. The part that annoys me is when artists get unduly defensive (I recall one or two did); if you come for criticism and get it, ask questions for clarification, take the feedback, and move on.

  116. Well Mark I agree with you -yes the posts can get tough and personal and this is the internet -where you can find all kinds of creatures

    still, I would rather have the wide open bazaar of the internet than the dry, dull, academic tedium that in my opinion Bill Conger expouses
    both on and off canvas-

  117. The fact is Dee and Olga -if you were to seek to make CAC relevant in Chicago’s art world, in a serious manner -you would have to change its underlying premise and have some form of standards for what you put forth under your auspices.

    Now the way it is, most of us won’t get involved because of the low caliber of art that gets shown and promoted through CAC. Personally, I think you should change: let the sunday painters, hobbyists and wannabees go elsewhere and focus on the serious artists here-

    CHANGE THE NAME ! its tooo COMMIE sounding! We have the Chicago Arts Club -why not The Chicago Artists Club?

  118. Every IS starts out as a WANNABE; I don’t think a service/advocacy organization should be deciding who is ENOUGH to benefit from its services/advocacy. I think in the long run it would be a mistake not to help artists at different stages navigate the art world, and information/resources is not the place for exclusion. So we disagree. It is a shame when artists (I don’t mean you) who seem to be looking for information/resources won’t look one place where there is information and resources. I would change the name if it were solely up to me. I personally don’t like Coalition, but Club is worse — I can see “club” going along with dismissing those who belong and take advantage of the CAC’s services as hobbyists :)

  119. i can think of a better word that starts with an “a” billy doesn’t have time to stalk anything. billy is a working man, and happy to admit it. in spite of roger payne’s poignant treatise on why we work, his ‘age of leisure and plenty’ hasn’t come upon us common folk because of blatant consumerist activities like purchasing overpriced, bad art. there’s got to be some figuring done to get us all out of this jam we’re in…

  120. One other thought … different venues meet different market need. I doubt the folks buying art at the Old Town Art Fair are the same ones buying it at International Art Fairs (for the most part at least) and the people buying art through their interior decorators probably aren’t the same market group either, more or less. In any case, they are not looking for the same things. Different artists choose to meet these different market needs and making money doing it — doesn’t make them non-artists.

  121. Why don’t you use your real name then and put down your website info so we can all get a good look at who is doing the talking. Or shall I do it for you? Talk about case being closed!…..you want to talk about mediocrity/utterly generic, beginning conceptualism 101? sheeesh! This is truly first year art student stuff -at best! Go ahead put it out here for everyone to see -that is, if your intentions are so honorable….

    I like the resume’ part….oh wait a minute! you did’t actually show work at those galleries or that museum….you worked at the reception desk! As A CLERK. On a resume”? Its hilarious.

    of course you would take the positions you take in order to justify nonexistent aesthetics/ skills or anything of interest -to justify the jam you’re in.

  122. Dee, ‘Club’ is good -I was thinking of the original club in NYC founded in 1950 -where you had to be voted in by your peers……and no, it was not that exclusive -but it did provide for a modicum of discernment. A modicum that CAC desperately needs to have any credibility here.

  123. Aw, Shark, all those darn hobbyists would vote each other in.

  124. that’s pretty good, wes.

  125. William Conger Says:

    Shark shouldn’t call me Bill Conger on the list because there’s an actual Bill Conger who is an artist and curator — no relation and a very interesting fellow. It’s unfair to abuse him when in fact the Shark means to insult me, a painter who obviously does not need Shark’s approbation. My friends do call me Bill, to be sure, but Shark should be specific when creating hard enemies for no sensible reason. My name is William.

  126. ‘the Conqueror’ no doubt…’Emeritus’

  127. shhhh

  128. it doesnt mean you’re smarter than me, mister

  129. “… there’s got to be some figuring done to get us all out of this jam we’re in…”

    Now, THAT is a real, and important statement, Billy. Try and stay at that level.

    I don’t like “Club” or “Coalition.” The first sounds Country-Club-like, the second ad hoc. I also think you guys gotta get away from those “CACA”-sounding names.

    That being said, Prof. Brandl has no real idea as to WHAT to change it to —- sorry……..

    Chicago Artists Guild (as in the Renaissance-Baroque times)? Chicago Artists’ Service Organization? Artists Organization of Chicago? Updated and made all capitalist trendy — Chicago Art Business Consultants, Inc.? Made really commie — Chicago Art Liberation Faction? The Art Justice League of Chicago? ChiArtOrg?

    I’m getting worse by the minute.

  130. Mark -taken out of context, this sentence you quote is fine -out of context that is…. -don’t encourage this stuff -and try and be more aware of whats going on in terms of what the nature of the conversation is -the boosterism has its moments where its appropriate -and others, where it simply is not.

    -I like club myself -for the reasons I’ve previously stated -having said that, as long as there is no criteria for membership to CAC other than claiming to be an artist, CAC will remain what it is….which unfortunately is not of a whole lot of use to serious artists in Chicago.

  131. How about ‘ Chicago Artists Union’– we could be like the Teamsters.

  132. We could be like the Teamsters– if anybody fucks with us, we could blow-up their cars– enough of this pussy art-world.

  133. tony’s right. my daddy’s a teamster!

  134. if we’re gonna be a union, the artists and all, do we have to put paint on our noses before we get photographed?

  135. The CAC supports Illinois Covered – You should too!


    Tell your state senator:

    – Vote YES on SB 5 Illinois Covered

    The Senate is expected to vote on SB 5 “Illinois Covered” TODAY. Call your Senator NOW. Every call is important. Make sure our senators show leadership in passing this bill that will prove access to affordable, quality health care for all Illinoisans.

    If you don’t know the name or district number of your state senator, visit http://www.elections.state.il.us/DistrictLocator/AddressSearch.aspx

    Don’t wait, pick up the phone right now, and dial 1-888-801-4426 and tell your state senator to vote yes on SB 5.

  136. I’ve been on the phone today with aldermen throughout the city to encourage them to really reconsider the Public Art Ordinance that was proposed by Daley, and which was deferred and published for 30 days at the request of Aldermen Munoz and Flores. I think you guys should pick up the phone and call your aldermen too, and ask them to support Alderman Flores’ amendment to the ordinance, which as the CAC suggested, would put the burden of responsibility on the DCA to make public all the commissions by sending them out to organizations such as the CAC, and re-instate the public art committee, which should be composed of community residents and art professionals.

    Please email me with any questions: olga@caconline.org

  137. “How about ‘ Chicago Artists Union’– we could be like the Teamsters.”

    –with a cool union hall on S. Ashland with 4′ thick reinforced walls on the ground floor.

  138. Jesus but this shit can get insipid. Wes I’ll never understand why you waste your time with such nonsense, or why you expect any good to come of it. At the same time I just can’t understand why people still get so enraged at Wesley’s behavior – don’t we all know by now that he’s irrascible? Move on or ignore it, but for the love of god people – grow some testicles! If you’re going to rip into the guy at least have the courage to use your real name. Otherwise you just look like a punk. (and Billy – you make licking ass sound like a bad thing – who knew?)

    And this is not for Wenzel, whose site I frequent and have little problem with, aside from the fact that he’s made some hyperbolic claims which have gone unsupported in the past. I often find myself disagreeing with him, or scratching my head, but so what? I’ve asked him to submit work to Sharkforum in the past, and he politely declined. Perhaps that’s best… But let’s get it started – stir it up, and get the conversation rolling.

    The thing about CAC is that it seems to be carrying water on both shoulders – the advocacy function is right on target and most definitely needed. The trouble, it seems, is when exhibitions or presentations may take on the impression of some form of credibility or official imprimatur.

    My students often get wrapped around the axle on this one. When i show my photo students pro work that they don’t appreciate they immediately want to know why it’s legit. It’s a fair question, but it’s not a fair first question. That question ought to be – “how is legitimacy confered?”

    Whenever an exhibition is presented there is the presumption of some form of superiority assumed. Even a middle school talent show suffers from this. Perhaps I’m missing something, but I just don’t see why this is a problem. Let the CAC continue to be an open-door operation taking all comers. So what?

    When mediocre artists present their work to a blinking public they’ll find out on their own just how tough the art world can be. The whole issue of gatekeepers, whether consensus-hide-bound or “alterna” is a moot point in at least one respect – art is about judgment and descimination, and someone, at some point, must make a judgment.

    We can argue about the fairness of such judgments – there’s a real conversation to be had there, and it often boils down to who stands to gain the most. I for one refuse to accept the premise that all opinions are made equal – some opinions are more learned, informed and honest than others.

    But so much work that is offered up these days as legit is utterly and completely context-driven, with little or no allowance for the funciton of the human experience in the origin of all art. Instead we see an awful lot of what I’ve come to refer to as art for blind people. (I say this as a very big fan of Duchamp, Artschwager, Oppenheim and others…)

    I remember a BAS podcast some time back where someone said “I like Puryear’s work, I just don’t know what to say about it.” This is hardly grounds for dismissal of artwork, but it does call the rubrics into question. Since when is the value of work wholely reliant about a didactic analysis? The pursuit of meaning is noble and human, but some things “must be passed over in silence.”

    Sorry for the side bar, but they seem related. We’re living through a battle between the empirical and the theoretical. I think we need a harmony of the two, but one of them is way more humane than the other.

    PS – Workman I love the idea you’ve laid out, and would be happy to blurb it on Sharkforum if it’s helpful. It’s similar to my take on how the Artist’s Project could be improved – have a jury pick 5 top-quality artists and give them a chunk of change at the fair, with the understanding that next year they’ll have a place to show the work.

    The whole issue of representation is a knot, which is why I asked Mark Falanga the question at the meeting held at Wesley’s studio – “how do you define representation?” This isn’t MLB, NBA of NFL. I’m with those who say it should be wide open.

  139. billys got big ole nuts of steelbrass, and a sweet dick on top.

  140. Thanks for sharing Billy. Anyone want to have an adult discussion about art, or anything else that matters?

  141. and by the way – what’s steelbrass?

  142. Interesting, David. My two cents… I’m don’t think every form of exhibition/presentation carries an suggestion of superiority — if it’s known to be open and unjudged/unscreened, it’s hard for me to see where a suggestion of superiority comes from, other than I suppose the exhibitor feeling confident enough to exhibit. Once one purports to judge, then of course, there is an imprimature, and a question of what the standards are/were. How is legitimacy confered? Initially, and not the least of which, is by the artist him/herself. After that, it’s the rest of us deciding whether or not to accept the legitmacy by whatever standard we employ, and somewhere along the way, consensus emerges. As you say, a mediocre artist presenting work will find out on their own just where the consensus is on the work they offering. Since there are ways apart from the visual and the merit of the work itself to impact that consensus in the short term, a fair bit of mediocre work (my opinion) enjoys momentary consensus, but I doubt it will stand the test of time. I know why I like Puryear’s work — I can look at it and look at it and look at it. Fairly simple-minded, I suppose.

  143. Dee,

    Not simple-minded at all. Do we agonize over the laws of attraction? Of course not. Personally I’ve got no problem with the notion of the CAC presenting the unjuried work of it’s members, provided the powers-that-be at CAC understand that they may not be taken seriously as representing the finest Chicago’s got to offer.

    This may be more an issue of branding than mission – I dunno. But the reality is that some amount of legitimacy is conveyed upon work that’s is exhibited anywhere – it’s a matter of degrees I suppose. Legitimacy and superiority are not always the same thing of course – the Sex Pistols were legit, but as technicians they weren’t superior to, say, Led Zeppelin. I think the meatier question is one of context, and how it relates to comprehension, hierarchical organization and value.

    Real legitimacy, of course, is conveyed in a variety of ways. But the whole game here is profile and credibility. How does one advance such essential career interests, and what is the caliber of the company you keep? I’ve done one show in NYC, and it was an embarassment, because it was a co-op on either Prince or Spring, and there was a ton of work, must of it >b>god awful. Yet I was thrilled to do the show, mostly out of a sense of desperation and ignorance.

    What’s disturbing to me is the trend toward the abdication of presonal responsibility for the control of on’s own context. How many times do we see people bloodthirsty for gallery representation – any gallery – and they honestly see that as the penultimate goal? Artists, as I’ve said before, need to take back art. We’re seeing it happen already, and it can only be a good thing. I’m for more voices as opposed to fewer, but I think we need to return to an acknowledgment that some work is better than others.

  144. hey Dolan – I think you missed your calling. you are one funny mofo.

  145. “I think we need to return to an acknowledgment that some work is better than others.”

    I agree. Is an art-enthusiastic journalist the best voice for lending judgement? What about an artist, who often promotes his/her friends to the death? Surely not a dealer. Critics preach press release garbage. Academics can possibly sort this shit out after we’re all dead. Curators rarely go near it until a collector already has it. Collectors! money talks..

  146. Well Dave -with Wenzels snarky remarks about two people who have offered you substantial support -namely myself and Tony Fitz, over my dead body would Erik Wenzel ever publish on sharkforum-

    Look CAC is basically irrelevant to the scene here -which Olga seems to be aware of- no doubt why she has contacted me looking for ways to get the organization to be taken seriously-which I have responded to by suggesting that there be some kind of criteria as to what constitutes being an artist to gain membership -CAC is known now as an all-inclusive hobbyist organization -to its own detriment -with some benefits professional artists can acucess -like health insurance for instance. Otherwise, it is not taken seriously.

    One of the things I have suggested is you Dave and Mark Staff Brandl -each writing a piece for them -I have done this hesitantly as I do worry about a reasonably serious site like sharkforum being involved even momentarily and peripherally with an organization like CAC-

    In terms of how art gets judged, look at people like Tony or myself -those who have persevered and, flourished. Having a serious career that has spanned several cites requires that people be compelled BY THE WORK….its always been an ironic enjoyment for me to watch members of the consensoriat here fall flat on their faces in LA for instance, where for me, that has not been the case. Nor has that been the case for any really substantive artists -Martin Puryear or Tony both being good examples.

  147. Well Dave -with Wenzels snarky remarks about two people who have offered you substantial support -namely myself and Tony Fitz, over my dead body would Erik Wenzel ever publish on sharkforum-

    It was before all that, and you and I had discussed it at the time.

    In terms of how art gets judged, look at people like Tony or myself -those who have persevered and, flourished.

    Of course, and as we’ve both observed in conversation it’s in large part because the two of you are so careful to manage and control the context in which your work is considered.

    Because art is essentially a monastic pursuit any sort of organized consensus is antithetical to the pursuit of real quality. And I’m increasingly convinced that it’s really essential for artists to be somewhat removed from the hive mind of society. Here’s a bumper sticker for ya – Consensus Kills Creativity.

    The way I see it artists – real artists understand their culture by understanding themselves and vice versa. You’ve got to be removed from society to do that. It’s a weird yin yang thang.

  148. OK – no brown-nosing lapdogs on sharkforum……now that I have been asked to consider how CAC could be improved, (though I really think its a fool errand and, a hopeless situation,) I would offer certain services that could still be made available to all -while the actual membership could have some kind of intelligent criteria-

  149. Where and how one exhibits one’s work clearly matters — I am not saying otherwise; these are choices artists make, and different stages, artists can make poor choices, depending on what their end game is. And, sometimes, just wanting to get the feet wet and the work out there can be part of the genesis for poor choices. That’s exhibition, not information, resources, etc, but I won’t belabor the point. Clearly, some work is better than others, which long term tends to prove out (at least I hope so). Making art to cater to a perceived momentary consensus is, well, pointless.

  150. OK – no brown-nosing lapdogs on sharkforum……now that I have been asked to consider how CAC could be improved, (though I really think its a fools errand and, a hopeless situation,) I would offer certain services that could still be made available to all -while the actual membership could have some kind of intelligent criteria-

    The Artist Project should be wide open -my main worry being that members of the consensoriat will attempt to rig the jury as they do everywhere else here and foist there crap upon us all once more-

  151. “hey Dolan – I think you missed your calling. you are one funny mofo.”

    Thank you! You’ve all been beautiful! Good night!

  152. I think all your points are quite importnt Dave R. Maybe we need to do a post specifically on Artist Project Improvemnets and one on CAC improvements on Sharkforum, to accumulate the ideas (there are some good ones at the Art Letter now too). Especially as this BAS blog here will fade when this weeks show goes up.

    An important point to add is that yes, Consensus is our plague right now (my term “Dictatorship of the Consensoriat” is here applicable), but total inclusiveness is not the answer, and neither is elitism based on un-earned priviledge.

  153. sharkforum is not the place to fill with suggestions for CAC Mark- period.

  154. Look, fellow sharks; we have spent far too much time right here on this thread trying to fix something that really is what it is -CAC…..its fatal flaw is, that its foundation is grounded upon the dregs of Chicago talent -one look at the artist pages confirms this..we at sharkforum and BAS have bigger….hmmm….’fish’ to fry -and I would point out to you – CAC is at least to my way of thinking part of the problem -due to the fact that whether by design or not, it promotes mediocrity -I’m against it.

    If they want to become more relevant, let them figure it out -we can throw them a bone by having you Mark and Dave contribute some editorial to them on a I would suggest, a one time basis and then lets move on…..

    You can’t make a horse out of horseshit -if they are happy with where they are at -so be it.

  155. Ctually, personally I am far less interested in the CAC than in ideas for Artist Project or AP-like ideas and improvements. I think the Fair and such energy needs to be redirected more than other things.

    Perhaps you are right, WK, and you yourself should do an interview with Olga to be put up on the CAC site about YOUR ideas concerning them, as the extent of our Shark-involvement. I don’t really know anything about them, other than the “old” CAC when I was in chicago, which did not interest me at all, and the fact that Olga seems quite competent and interested in moving ahead.

    But I am quite happy with my involvement in Sharkforum and BAS as my Chicago activities.
    I need to do more therein anyway — especially as I think Richard and Duncan and Amanda seem to be rather overworked and since we have big plans and changes and activities already planned for Sharkforum and Sharkpack stuff.

  156. well Mark I have had my say with the CAC thing…I was hoping you hadn’t noticed I was trying to pawn off that writing chore on you…….besides, you are so much nicer than I am…

  157. One post recommending improvements to either CAC or AP would hardly fill up SF. I say it fits nicely with our goal to be a spur for change, Mark should write about it if he’s got something to say – let’s hear it.

    As for my writing anything for CAC, I’d have to be asked first.

  158. wow, i cannot believe how snobby you are, sharkie. And your posts sometimes just look plain angry. At one point you say that the problem in Chicago is not the CAC because it is irrelevant completely, and then you say that we are part of the problem because we promote mediocrity. I’m really sorry I even bothered you – I had no idea that you guys would spend so much time discussing the CAC’s inherent problems when you don’t even seem to understand the underlying premise – we are a service orgnanization, pure and simple. I really wanted to get true feedback and real ideas, practical and informed. But instead I’m getting anger.

    Paul Sierra and Kimberly Pietrowsky have online galleries, and they do because it provides them great visibility. We advertise the online galleries in art publications throughout the nation and people from all over come to them to find Chicago artists and also buy, commission, and otherwise engage Chicago artists. Just because there is a majority of mediocre art does not mean that the service is irrelevant. I don’t even know how you can conceive of this.

    And Chicago needs a service organization. There are plenty of exhibiting organizations from art centers to galleries to museums, that focus on Chicago’s finest, it is not our duty to do that. The CAC’s duty is to provide the infrastructure for a successul art career, whatever that career looks like in the eye of the served. And like i have already said, each member can use the services that are most pertinent to their needs, at whatever level they are in their career. Some don’t need to access our listings of art reps, they might need only our grant lists. Just use what you need. And if you don’t need anything, then you are really someone we all need to idolize…..

    So, MSB and DR, I guess Daddy Shark won’t let you play in my sweet waters – he wants to keep you in his salty seas. Oh, well. So be it. That’s fine.

    But I do want to leave you all with the understanding that the CAC is here to provide support for those, all those, who need it. And support comes in the distribution of information, workshops teaching artists how to market themsleves, create a portfolio, prepare their taxes, maintain a healthy working environment in the studio, copyright and freedom of speech panels, etc, access to the Online calendar to post your event with artwork and websites (all users can use this feature: http://www.caconline.org/calendar.asp, and so many other services.

    The Art Open is in no way an exhibition that has the pretense of showing the 300 best artists, but as its title states, is open to ALL artists who apply, members or non members alike. And I just want to be clear: many of Chicago’s upcoming artists have exhibited in the CHicago Art Open – the Sorg brothers, Greg Stimac who has a 12″x12″ show coming up, and so many others whom I don’t have the time to mention. Collectors buy here, and artists get the opportunity to show off what they’re made off – it’s up to the public and collectors to judge, but the CAC provides the opportunity.

    Anyway, I just started a jurying panel last year at the Art Open, as i had done at Around The Coyote when I was director years ago before I became a mommy, and they will select 30 artists as Curator’s Choice. Some of them will for usre get represenation in Chicago and this will loead to other career developments. This is what our goal is – we don’t do the deciding, the galleries and the buyers, and others providing the $$$$ do. We offer tha platform.

  159. “So, MSB and DR, I guess Daddy Shark won’t let you play in my sweet waters – he wants to keep you in his salty seas. Oh, well. So be it. That’s fine.”

    Let me be prefectly clear on this – fuck that. I know I speak for Mark when I say that we do what we want. As Wesley will no doubt tell you, SF is a group of people – not one person. He’s made that clear both here and elsewhere.

    He doesn’t pick my friends, and he sure as shit doesn’t dictate what anyone can or cannot write about. While I don’t blame you for having this misconception, I want to be perfectly clear – don’t saddle him with that, and please don’t place the rest of us in a position of subjegation. My reaction may seem overstrong, but it’s only because I’m growing weary of this mythology.

    I won’t hijack this thread with a long spiel about SF and why it works, but suffice it to say that the profile, credibility and cultural vision that Wesley brings are only one part of the story.

    And just for the record, Olga, I personally have no problem with what you’re doing. My posts above were only meant to break apart the issue, nothing more. The observation that CAC may be operating at crossed purposes is not meant as an indictment, or even a definitive declaration.

    I’m not in the practice of espousing strong opinions regarding subjects in which I have incomplete knowledge. Self-empowerment is a good thing, and artists, like everyone else, should be able to support themselves and occupy a role as productive and constructive members of society. To the extent that you accomplish that I applaud your efforts.

  160. offered purely in the interest of levity:

    my sweet waters

    is a lovely double-entendre, even if unintended.

  161. pertfectly intended, of course. my compliments…

  162. Thanks to Dave Roth for the clarity. As you’ll note by the vociferousness of Dave’s response, not only does Wesley not tell us what to do, he doesn’t even try; he’s not like that (really!), we wouldn’t listen anyway, and we all discuss even our disagreements out in the open, unlike our Favorite Targets, the Consensus Clique. WK just speaks strongly, that’s his way and indeed his strength.

    But he does it in the open and he is the driving energy behind Sharkforum, but the rest of us do just as much in our own ways — Roth works like a madman on the site, I’m one prime poster and probably work the longest on each piece, — etc. and similar points concerning all others there, like Lynne, Simone, Nick and some of the newer members, everybody — we all have our own huge individual and individualistic chunk of Shark-dom. That IS, in fact, our major point.

    I am definitely STILL intending to do an essay for your publication. Although it may have Sharky content. What content exactly, I don’t know. I’m still contemplating various options. And I can’t really concentrate till after my huge two-day-long Latinum examination in June/July.

    I thought you had already asked Dave, as I believe you told me, or I imagined or something. If not, then it would be a good idea. It would also be a good idea to have a discussion with Wesley about CAC and put it up on your website and let others comment.

    I meant, in my last post above, that I really know almost nothing about CAC and can’t comment on it. I think such a discussion could be fruitful, though, even to those uninvolved.

    I will most certainly NOT be writing such a piece for your publication (what’s the name again?). As I said to you, when I do something for you I will do something more theoretical, albeit probably heretical to standard poststructural theory. That is MY strength and joy.

    Part of our discussion lies between the lines here. We have talked a lot about what each site should have as a profile, so to speak — what are the strengths of each. As websites get away from being “My Homepage Blog” stuff into more important magazine-type entities, with the huge listenership of BAS and the massively-huge readership of Sharkforum, we don’t want to water them down. It is increasing important to concentrate on the strengths of each site and not just have them scatteredly mimicing each other all across the board.

    I’m a mountain Shark but also sometimes like sweet and sometimes salty waters. And very often bloody ones.

  163. …. And my primary activity is PAINTING. I’m a visual artist. I make this stuff, I can’t just order it from the yellow pages like a Neo-Con-Artist. And I have shitloads of work with my Phd stuff, my teaching and Art in America.

    My chief affiliation is to Sharkforum, which inspires me the most and helps drive my art, and then BAS, which is just so darn fun (as compared to the Glossies, etc.). So anything else I write will come afte that long list. But I do usually find time.

  164. Hey Mark – it must be 11pm in Helvetia. What are you doing in front of your computer on a Saturday night? We’ll keep in touch about that piece – no pressure. We have quite a few writers lined up for the next few months, so we’re OK. The publication is called Chicago Artists’ News. Here are the current issue’s headlines:

    Major and Minor:
    Media Coverage of the Arts in Chicago and Beyond
    By Janina Ciezadlo (Reader writer and critic)

    Steve Mumford: An Artist in Iraq
    By Victor M. Cassidy

    Is Re-Enchantment of the Art World Possible?
    Some musings on the April 17 School of the Art Institute day-long panel on religious art, ‘Re-Enchantment’
    By Victoria Martin

    Perspectives: ‘The Road’…to More Meaningful Art?
    With Corey Postiglione

    and comprehensive listing for calls for entry, exhibitions, opportunities, etc.

    Also, I’d like to find out from Sharkie what current Chicago artists he either admires or believes to have real promise, and why he feels that he is underappreciated. I mean what woluld he like to see that he doesn’t see happen for his career…A solo MCA show, sold out shows in LA, commissions, repute, stable collector base…What’s not happening?

  165. Anger huh? The Shark feeds at his leisure….what may seem terrifying or filled with anger to you Olga is in fact, a casual dining experience for The Shark.

    Victor Cassidy, Corey Postiglione? You really know how to pick em -I’m almost afraid to ask who comes next-

    Look, you pander to the lowest common denominator -either by choice or design or by some other reason -it doesn’t really matter why-bottom line, you want to be all things to all people and in the end. it costs you any kind of credibility.

    I am not all that angry at my situation in particular -I have worked hard and enjoy a good, working situation as a painter…..I’ve written and spoken for so long about the things that bother me in the art world here -most recently concerning the Driehaus grants -on sharkforum -that I don’t feel the need to reiterate them once again…..

    Believe it or not, my frustration has most to do to do with the fact that for the last 20 years or so, the fix has been in- and, how that has effected the art community here as a whole- not just me personally….the consensoriat cabal has had there way -and, it has been an ASSAULT ON LOGIC and, AESTHETICS…..but now, we have the internet and finally, the gatekeepers are losing their grip on power…this, is good news for almost all of us. Almost.

  166. I have never felt that Wesley’s criticisms (or mine, for that matter) are specifically about HE himself not getting something or other — look at our Shark attacks. They are about the “fix” as he just said, and how that has created a mannersist, sophistic artworld increasingly self-satisfiedly absent of quality. Many many many other peopel find this true as well; I’ll make no list, but let it be said that when he or I or others do such criticisms we get uncountable emails and so on in agreement — many of which are from very “important” and well-known people in the artworld.

    If I may be so seemingly “idealistic” it is about TRUTH. It has been said by certain poststructuralists that situations do not in themselves suggest alternatives, I greatly disagree — I have said it before and still believe that “EVERY “IS” SUGGESTS AN “OUGHT.” Especially in such servile, clearly KC times as ours.

    I was asked this very question after I wrote a page filling article in an important Swiss newspaper criticizing “fixed” and secretive curation/jurying of certain shows. Shows IN WHICH MY ART WAS INCLUDED. It is about telling the truth(s) and trying to promote what is right and most of all what is great art. If those of us who have some success don’t chirp up, who will?!!

    Yeah, I should have a one-person show in the MCA, etc. But I am in several museum collections and so on. However, MOST OF ALL, I — and Wesley too as I understand him — would like to go to shows as see great stuff, including our own, — great art with which we would want to compete, art which we want to see, things we want to think about (and with). And unfortunately this is very often nowadays not true — to say the very least!

    It has also been suggested to me that an artist must simply accept everything as it is, learn the KC rules so to speak, and go along for success (which, per definition is sophistry) or “drop out” entirely. This is NOT true. There are many many many other and far more productive strategies. Best of all, operating in the system to some extent, enough to have a voice, and then CRITICIZING it.

    In many ways, Wesley’s attacks (and I hope mine too and other Sharks and similar folks) are in fact FOR YOU, for other artists, certainly for art.

  167. Thanks for giving me something to think about. I have a question…. when, in “the art market” sense has there not been an element of “fix”/insularity in the process because the cynic in me suspects it more or less has always been there, just involving different people. It’s never blind if done by invitation/curation; it’s hardly blind otherwise when work becomes recognizably that of a particular artist. Do you mean that we don’t know who the curators are, and hence who to hold accountable for the selections? If the work is poor, facile, or mediocre quality, the market eventually ought to turn INS into OUTS as long as artists are not passive about getting their work out there by whatever means they can.

    If the value of the work is to be judged BY THE WORK, why is there any need for explanations, something we seem unable to resist? The practice of telling people that if they do not like/appreciate the art, think it is art, etc., they just don’t get it or incapable of getting it (which may be true or not) and would/should if they could better understand (enter here a growing importance of theoretical explanation) seems inevitably to devolve down to shallow one liners – which we get whether we care for the work or not or whether it is any good aesthetically – and complicated art that needs to be accompanied by pages of thesis to “get” — again whether we care for it or not or it is any good.

  168. Dee,

    I would suggest we all consider the music industry as a cautionary tale of what could be. If we’re not careful we’ll be even farther down that road.

  169. David, the caution — the potential for well-marketed blandness abounds, etc. is well taken, but it seems to me that the art market/world stratifies in a markedly different way than the music industry. Perhaps I am wrong about that. How much art has mass or broad commercial appeal (beyond graphic and commerical art). Video, perhaps… Anyhow, if art world/market generally always has been insular — (and audience stratified), should the criticism of resulting blandness accept the insularity model and poke at the particulars, or should it poke at the distribution model instead?

  170. I don’t think there will ever be a parallel in the distribution model, as people consume art and music in much different ways. I think my point is that the music industry has skewed toward fabricated allure and not-so-subtle pandoring which is the result of people only attending to the bottom-line.

    It’s a question of priorities – but considering the sameness of how much is out there it’s clear that there’s a parallel in the “choosing” part in each world.

    Once upon a time I held the fantasy that dealers were well-funded esthetes with a broad and deep knowledge of art history. Even if those people once existed, they seem to be sorely lacking these days, at least on average.

  171. Holy shit. I leave town for a few days and blammo the blog explodes!

  172. We always talk when you’re gone.

  173. It seems to me the more open the general arena – i.e, a framework that promotes less insularity – the more room for real competition based on the work itself to ferret out the good from the bad, the great from the merely good, etc., rather than based on the choices of some set of choosers. At the same time, it feels somewhat inevitable (if for no other reason but efficiency) that we end up with gatekeepers narrowing the field at any given moment in time. If they narrow it too much, resulting in sameness, the answer has to be to open the field back up, doesn’t it? I wonder the extent to which absenting of qualitative standards and deconstruction for the sake of deconstruction left the field ripe for momentary marketing to co-opt; in any case, marketing, however engrained it seems at the moment, has a shelf life. The test of time seems to me a fairly good one.

  174. Dee there is a difference between ‘choosers’ as you put it, and a sense of discernment and, reason.

    Lets put it this way, since being a serious painter for instance takes approximately the same amount of involvment, dedication, skill and talent as say, being a neurosurgeeon, lets follow the CAC model and just say that everyone has a little neurosurgeon in them somewhere -lets keep it open -only time will tell who was good and who wasn’t! Have an aneurysm, a tumor -look no further than the person sitting next to you!

    It insipid and lame. And, it is the way CAC operates which, is why as an organization, it is not taken seriously in the art world here.

    -where you may have a few professional artists on your gallery site, the fact is most of it is amateur and not very good -and it doesn’t take a brain surgeon -nor time, to figure that out -sheeeeesh!

    The problem here in Chicago in terms of the market -is first of all, one of certain people in academia attempting to influence and promote their ‘product’ -in various ways, via The ‘Ren’, -biennials, Documenta, LOCAL GRANTS-, local collectors etc. all, where as I have mentioned many times before, certain art educators, in cohorts with a small clique of people here have way more influence -than say, any curator from the MCA does – its like having a fox in the henhouse -no pun intended.

    There was a great fury here when Lynne Warren included people like me, Tony Fitzpatrick -and others in the Art Chicago 1945 -95 exhibition while omitting certain member of the consensus clique -that it wasn’t a party line exhibtion -a promotional tool. People coudn’t believe it -when Lynne acted like a real curator and not a partisan art educator.

    Lets face it -long after that insipid one-liner junk Gaylen Gerber …does he even make it? -is relegated to some dusty basement, (actually thats where it resides for the most part now-) Jim Nutt, Ed Paschke and others will be remembered, be influencial, their work valued. How interesting was it to see Roberta Smith give Ed Paschke such a moving obituary -stating that what really held him back, was staying here -where, I might add, he was treated with disrespect by so many of the minnions -the Erik Wenzels of their day- and by certain artists here -the consensoriat -who, since their work is so poor, must promote themselves from some post modern/fake Duchampian conceit ‘painting is dead’, I’m a co-OPERATOR’….those aren’t brushstrokes -those are anti-ejaculatory marks’…etc

    You want to know what is what? Take one of those moronic grey paintings -how about one of the ones where he put a can of paint in a brief case with a canvas and kicked it down some stairs -put a piece of sophmoric junk like that up on the same wall with a Paschke or a Nutt or a Fitzpatrick or a Kimler, or a Donald McFadyen…its pretty simple to see whats real and what isn’t- what do I really think? To quote Jed Perl when describing another, far better artist than this academic panderer, “he is a bullshit artist masquerading as a painter.”

    Chicago has slid off the international map – during the same time period that Kirchner and the consensus regime came into and wielded power. Coincidence? I think not. These are the people who ironically enough, are provincial and parochial -and they have promoted and sold a version of what is important here that fits their sensibilities. And here is the worst part, we have let them do it!

    Chicago needs to be international on its own terms -this is OUR time…..I am for a complex, multifaceted scene here -there is even a place (in my mind at least,) for the academics with all of their bland, innocuous, inanities….but this doesn’t mean we need art educators to tell us what has currency or, to consider every hobbiest that shows up on the CAC web pages to discern what is or may be important.

    The art market right now is precarious: I was having a conversation with a contemporary art dealer – more powerful and international than any here in Chicago I might add, who said to me -concerning the Chelsea/NYC based market of the moment ie 72 million dollar silkscreened Warhols “Wesley, put your money away -save it!, this thing is out of control -its going to crash”

    We here in Chicago are not part of that market. All Chicago artists -even those at the top of the heap make what is certainly far more reasonable amounts for their work…..any Chicago artist that goes up at public auction, is not going to sell for the retail value of their work. Its just a fact. What I want to see is more artists here be able to make a living off of their work -like I do -like Tony does……a richer, better scene -in every way. All the things that made NYC great have left it; what remains there is a marketplace driven by speculation mostly the financial machinations of a group of vulgarians… IT IS OUR TIME….lets resolve to have a more serious scene here in out city, lets create our own art world, our NEW ART CITY! -where AESTHETICS -as defined BY THE ARTISTS! are the paradigm, what is valued. Believe me, if we do this, have the kind of discourse I am describing, people will pay attention. And maybe artists will even gain back their sense of propriety and self respect.

  175. The Pop-music scene as a cautionary tale — great point Dave.

    Good job answering, Shark! See what I mean? WK clearly describes the situation AND gives ideas for its improvement.

    And Dee, don’t fall for that “oh, it has always been so” mumbo-jumbo. That is what toadies and sophists always try to make you believe — yes, there have always been problems, there have always been power elite. But, as an example — a group of well-educated, aesthetically advanced and COMPETING art-collecting, artist-financially supporting cardinals (as in the Baroque) is much different that a tiny group of middle-brow consensus backstabbers. The only comparable times were the Mannerist Academy and the French LeBrun Academy shortly before the revolution of Modernism.

    My suggestion to the Neo-Cons for a a good work: Put a few of the “fixers” themselves in a case and kick them down some stairs and then exhibit their bodies, while secretly writing gushing, sophomoric love letters to an older art dealer woman behind your wife’s back.

  176. “My suggestion to the Neo-Cons for a a good work: Put a few of the “fixers” themselves in a case and kick them down some stairs and then exhibit their bodies, while secretly writing gushing, sophomoric love letters to an older art dealer woman behind your wife’s back.”

    More proof that Great White Sharks do hunt in packs!

    And btw Mark -The Shark has clearly and doggedly described the situation here with more acuity and with greater concision than anyone else, for a long time now. All the while, offering a vision of how things could be in Chicago.

  177. what we are discussing here is, and I quote -author unknown; ” human values against the established order’

    and then, -author known;

    There must be some kind of way out of here
    Said the joker to the thief
    Theres too much confusion
    I cant get no relief
    Businessman they drink my wine
    Plow men dig my earth
    None will level on the line
    Nobody of it is worth

  178. just a quickie:

    “marketing, however engrained it seems at the moment, has a shelf life”

    the problem is that people have a shelf life as well.

  179. author unknown?

  180. Hmmn, where in what I wrote did I ask you to consider what art educators think is current or every piece of art (or for that matter, any of it, on CAC’s website — we view CAC differently… I take it for what it is — a service organization that does not purport to gate-keep). There are plenty of mediocre doctors, even neurosurgeons out there; their credentials are indicia that they put the time in, have some modicum of intelligence, etc, not a guarantee that they are particularly good at what they do. If I had an aneurysm, time-wise, I suspect I’d have no choice but to go to the nearest hospital and hope the neurosurgeon there was in fact good, not just well credentialed. A tumor – I’d have more time to check around, check records, get recommendations, and do whatever other research I felt would help me choose. With art, one has time to look and won’t die if they get it wrong.

    The hold of the French Academy’s was broken by challenges to its standards and to the validity of specialness of its insularity, and in the end, by great artists (accompanied by, I am sure some not so great ones) pushing against it and rising outside its grip. By all means, rise up. It isn’t the list of credentials that distinguish — it’s the work. I don’t think looking at any particular view of what is “current” nor predicting what will be “current” is the way to create great art, regardless of the particular arbiters.

  181. You didn’t ask Dee -I described for you how the market works to some extent here in Chicago. CAC can do or be what ever it is you people who run it want it to be -just know that almost every artist I know here in Chicago avoids it like the plague.

  182. Actually, I don’t run CAC, Shark. I did serve on the board a couple years, along with Jerry Haussman and others. At any rate, the questions I was asking and the points I was making went beyond CAC. To the extent you responded to the the larger points, I appreciate it.

  183. Dee, actually I was far more specific with my response than were the questions you posed -but, you can always go to sharkforum.org and read more blogs from The Shark -where I have written extensively about any number of art world issues that I find interesting -I would also suggest you read Jed Perls piece Laissez-Faire Aesthetics -also on sharkforum- and, I might add, an essential read of the moment seems to be Perl’s discussion of mid-century Manhattan, – New Art City with its ideas of ‘heroic determinism’ and the evolution of essential form, not to mention, the discussion of concerns as to how artists related to society and the idea of a complicated fabric of individuation as a societal definition of artistic freedom-

  184. Justin Chin Says:

    So why is it that the Bad at Sports blog keeps getting turned into a pity party for The Shark? Doesn’t he already have his “forum” via which he can air his conspiracy theories? It’s as much a “forum” as Bill O’Reilly offers a “no-spin” zone – they occupy about the same level intellectually as well…if being intellectual means macho posturing and pompous indignation at the “elites” who are holding back their morally superior agenda. They both remind me of those villains from superhero cartoons that complained about the “fools at the lab” that didn’t recognize their genius. The formula is quite obvious – anyone who agrees with me/supports the work I like is smart and honest; anyone who disagrees with me/does not support my work ,or that of those I admire is corrupt and part of a cabal. Pathetic. If ANYTHING makes Chicago look irrelevant or “small” as compared to New York or L.A. it’s tolerating the inanity of a washed up wannabe “SERIOUS!!!” painter like Kimler. He failed in L.A. and he’s failed here, but it’s someone else’s fault, it’s the gatekeepers, it’s the academics, it’s the neo-cons, it’s the small minded conformists, blah blah blah…And now The Shark gets to show how tough he is, by ranting some more about my role in the conspiracy against him and all his righteous compatriots, by blathering on about how he IS successful, just not as successful as he could be if the various boogey men of Chicago didn’t hold him back, by issuing veiled (or direct) threats of physical harm, by reminding all of the “krill” what a BIG BAD shark he is…I mean seriously, what kind of an adult calls himself “The Shark” except one wracked with insecurity, frustrated with his artistic and intellectual impotence, and wallowing in his irrelevance to any real arena of discourse (like one he and his friends didn’t make themselves – like when the dorky, unpopular kids start their own club to show up the smart, popular ones)? Sorry Wesley, but you’re going to die in obscurity no matter how many rants you issue on blog comments…

  185. Poor Justin Chin (speaking of washed up)…lets see: how, have I failed here in Chicago?……or how about LA or San Francisco? -OH, thats right, your ad hominem attack here has nothing to do with reality!

    What a jerk, not to mention just a plain fool.

    Lets see: I have done two LA exhibitions -both virtually sold out shows. Both shows were reviewed, with one of them being pick of the week in The LA Weekly -is this what you meant by failure moron? I am now in the midst of planning further exhibitions in LA along with doing a major painting project involving a number of large scale works there (which btw -I feel confident I’m being paid more for than you Justin will ever earn off of anything aesthetic in you entire life.) The art critic at the LA Weekly Doug Harvey is not only an admirer of my work, he is joining sharkforum as an editor. A very large scale painting of mine just went up on exhibition at the Weisman Museum at Pepperdine -along with many of the other painters from the Venice scene…is this what you were referring to?

    I have exhibited extensively in the bay area both with Ivory Kimpton, Kay Kimpton and Paula Anglim. Where my work has been widely collected -including the Berkeley Museum.

    Here in Chicago I do not require nor want an art dealer. I make a comfortable living as a painter and have had extensive coverage of my work in the press over the last several years -as anyone who isn’t a total and complete imbecile would know. They would also know (or with half a brain make it a point to know, (especially if they were goint to attempt an attack upon me, duh!) that along with this I exhibited a major piece of drawing at the MCA over the last year that was more than well received. They would also be aware of the very large scale public work I have accomplished her in the last few years, the fact that sharkstock 2 was the official after party for the Chicago Art Fair -that it was a huge success, and that what I’m in the midst of now is creating a series of paintings to be used by the great Alejandro Escovedo for his next recording with the great producer Glyn Johns-and quite probably to be reproduced as large scale backdrops for performances – some of which will be filmd by Jonathan Demme…..Man! Am I washed up or what? No wonder I call myself The Shark!

    OOPS! Its that goddamned reality thing rearing its ugly head again! But then again, if you are a brain dead, washed up performance artist attempting to kiss consensoriat butt -what the hell! Obviously, no amount of stooping down to grovel or smooch behind is enough!

    _I don’t list these facts to boast – but simply to point out to a dunce that if you are going to attack someone -its kind of a good idea to know of what you are talking about. As for physical violence, implied or otherwise, you digress! From sheer stupidity to specious fabrication! Impressive.

    Kind of like your last (in a litany) of retarded comments , sorry Justin, I just ain’t that obscure.

    This is the kind of junk that muddies the water unfortunately obscuring points relevant to us all -observe my last post prior to this garbage…..as usual, it substantive and about critical discourse..unfortunately, here then comes the latest cloud of krill in the personage Justin Chin with his small little generic self, blathering like a petty uninformed dolt, making a complete fool out of himself.

  186. Shark, your answers were indeed more specific than my questions. I will look at Jed Perl’s articles.
    I don’t see a long term benefit to some set of cardinals (Mark’s reference, not yours), however good a set of particular cardinals’ judgments are at any given time, deciding what is worthy/good/bad/etc., because in fact the cardinals change and the ones that take over don’t necessarily apply similar apt judgment … hence, my questions on the model/system, verses the particulars. At the moment, as I see it, keep the base field of opportunity wide and make then make aesthetic judgments on the individual works that result; a laissez faire marketplace does this, although our marketplace in general does not perfectly reflect the laissez faire paradigm. And sometimes the marketplace runs amok and has to correct itself. Or I suppose one could opt for a nice mountain valley and shrug.

  187. Dee -be sure to read the Perl piece on sharkforum -its completely brilliant. I have been piecing through New Art City for the last 6 months or so and have finally resolved to read it it in its entireity….I happen to think Perl is our finest critic.

    I feel like New Art City -and the de Kooning biography really set a tone in a timely way to discuss what has happened to the art scene -in America and abroad…..its interesting to note -in light of the poorly done attack on me above -that far from my being alone with only fellow sharkpack members for accompaniment, on some kind of quiotic crusade. Writers the likes of Jed Perl, Jerry Salz, Roberta Smith, to name a few of our finest critics have weighed in over the last few years on the market run amuck, on institutional aggression -questioning the art education business -what Ad Rhinehardt referred to as ‘The Racket’ -how all of this is effecting the making of art- among other topics of interest we discuss on sharkforum-

  188. I agree with you, actually, Dee. I myself would most probably have been railing against the Cardinals in the Baroque, had I been an artist then. I just meant those history facts as salient illustration — there are “supporters/doorkeepers” and there are mere “doorkeepers” so to speak.

    I was talking less to you, Dee, I believe, than to the whole question. Far too many people answer any critique with a statement to the effect that “it has always been this way, just live with it.” That is not only cynical and anti-creativity, but also untrue, … even THOUGH it is taught in many art schools that way (see my rant against the truncated, self-serving and false view of history propagated by the Consensoriat as addressed in an earlier blog discussio here on BAS). — As a side comment, everyone should learn more art history and THUS be “free” from it. You are entrapped with a “burden of the past” mostly, perhaps only, when you don’t know it in all its richness. When you do know it, you find your own “forefathers and mothers” and don’t have to swirl in endless circles of repetition nor write in endless daisy-chains of plagiarism.

    Excuse me, Justin, but I take personal intellectual offense at your perception of Sharkforum. Can you read? I take it so; you wrote in here. Well, then go and read some of my/our back posts. If anything, mine tend to be too far opposite your appraisal — extremely forum-like, scholarly and so on. I have to work to lighten it all up a bit.

    And your post is an almost perfect illustration of what you CLAIM to be against in Kimler’s posts. It is YOUR post which is whiny, if not simply an example of small-minded conformism. That “oooh he failed” is the standard rant AGAINST Kimler. Do you Consensus folks have seminars From The Top wherein you memorize such stuff? Like you memorize “how to try to succede in art without having talent”?

    EVEN IF that statement were true, it would not affect Kimler’s criticisms’ truth value (try a little logic in place of memorization) — and it is blatantly NOT TRUE anyway. (Nor about me, by the way. I’m doing quite well, as is WK, certainly better than you are — I’ve never heard of you), but again, that is NOT the point.

    It just helps to have success WITHOUT ass-kissing when criticizing — as I have repeatedly written, — if those who HAVE some success don’t complain, who can or will.

    Check your puerile armchair psychotherapy at the door and try arguing from and about content.

  189. Well not just your posts Mark -I’m assuming this guy is the ‘performance’ Justin Chin one finds on google – he is either that or less than that..you know here in Chicago we have some really amazing performance artists -some say the best in the world -you can see them on any given night lighting up stages all over town -at Steppenwolf, Looking Glass, Redmoon, The Hypocrites -even my old alma matter Collaboraction…..they are called, ACTORS! They do THEATRE! We also have a terrific poetry scene here -with actual real poets -not ex SAIC student poseurs faking it -but the real thing -perhaps the premier poet here in Illinois being sharkforums own Dr. Simone Muench. And of course the great Mark Strand (do you even know who Mark Strand is Justin?)-who was here until last year -with whom btw -I collaborated on a broadside for The Poetry Center -more of my failures! ha!

    But seriously, when is someone going to level an attack against me who gives some evidence of basic intelligence? I mean, all I have to do is state a few basic facts -LA for instance -thats an abreviated version of things I have done there….I can go on -the Pasadena Art Center -In Perfect Silence -with Ed Moses, Roger Hermann, John Milleu -to name a few -an exhibition that the curator centered around my work;….more? Its just mind numbing how lame these flimsy, poorly though out and/or executed, attacks are. What? Are the mentally challenged all rising up in unison against me?

    First, I don’t feel the need nor, do I have any burning desire to be more ‘successful’ here in Chicago. I’ve kind of done it -and besides I’m quite confident that in terms of local coverage Tony Fitz and I have received the lions share of it in recent years -just as confident as I am that he and both do very well in terms of supporting ourselves with our work. Like Tony, I would not have accepted a Driehaus Grant -for my own reasons -and I might add, having been involved in the theater world where Driehaus money has long been around, I have my own personal reasons why I would refuse it. Its not about me -its the fact that this particular ‘selection’ of Gerber, Ledgerwood, smells bad. Somethings rotten in Chicago. Far from being simply my reaction I might add.

    What is so hard to get about the fact that I have a row to hoe with certain elements of the art world here that I have really bypassed in terms of my own career, that I have transcended? -I do not seek nor want their approbation. My anger derives primarily from having witnessed the corruption, the poor work they have promoted, how they have limited the scene here, destroyed promising careers. Careers of friends of mine.

    Is anyone besides your garden variety morons like Justin so fucking lame they think I am the only person in the Chicago art world that holds my points of view? Is their anyone besides the Justins of the world who thinks that the people on sharkforum -some reasonably formidable people, are there because they disagree with me?

    Look – I could start listing people who do agree with me on the situation here -but of course, I won’t. At the same time I feel completely comfortable stating that major figures in art education at the art institute, major figures at the curatorial level at museums here, major figures in terms of artists here concur with my perception. Not a few, but many- if not the majority, not far from it.

    As one of the very top people in art education said to me -the scene here will not grow until the backs are broken of the people in power here -or, as one of the deans of painters here, a long time Chicago art world figure said to me ” so much has been lost for so little”

    How many times have I heard someone from out of town say, ‘what ever happened to Chicago? You used to have such a good art scene there’…

    The idiots who attack me always try to make it personal…….have they seen my studio? Are they aware as Olga pointed out of all the things that I have done here? Are they aware that with the exception of The Art Institute I am more than well represented in every museum here? That I have had a one man show at the MCA here -what more could I possibly do? That I make well into the six figures each year -with some reasonably challenging very large scale work -traditionally difficult to place? What does it take to get across the simple idea that this is not a struggle about my career? And, what does it take,… -how just plain stupid are these people that they don’t realize that what is important to me -is the canvas I’m camped out in front of at the time…and that in terms of this political fight, that its personal as a MATTER OF ETHICS..


    Besides -if this most recent clown is so convinced of my failure -then how could I ever have the power to hold back the scene here as he makes the claim I do? Can’t have it both ways dummy.

    Look, most of the old collectors are dying off -or at least are way past their prime; one of the things I am interested in is bringing a new generation of collectors into the art scene here -its important for all of us. I’m also interested in getting all collectors here TO SUPPORT CHICAGO ARTISTS -like they do in LA, like they do in New York -which they consistently don’t do here. This, is a huge issue…and the fact is that many of yesterdays top collectors treated people like Judith Kirchner as an art consultant -which meant that the conceptual 101 crowd is what was collected to the exclusion of everything else. How interesting was it to see Lou Manilow’s collection of this academic detritus at the MCA a few summers ago -curated by Sharkforums own Lynne Warren -and see how poorly it aged -how just awful the work looked in retrospect…

    Sharkforum is not a blog site -it, is an ezine. I believe we have more unique visitors and hits than any other art related blog site coming out of Chicago. With the addition of Doug Harvey -along with others to be announced its probably going to grow exponentially. I think that along with BAS -and others -even that pimply pus-pool of obsequiousness Erik Wenzel, we have a chance to really become a major international scene ON OUR OWN TERMS whether you or your fellow sycophants like it ‘Justin’ or not -so fuck you.

  190. And one last thing -assuming this is Justin Chin -ex-performance artist -washed up -or you hung it up, or no one was showing up, or whatever -as you readily admit you were a bad actor -well, if your post here is any indication -your writing isn’t so hot either. if you are going to call yourself a poet maybe you should consider returning here and taking one of Dr Muench’s beginning poetry 101 courses – you would be right at home over there at UIC!

  191. !

  192. David Roth Says:

    Mr. Chin,

    I must take exception with you gross mischaracterization of Sharkforum. As co-founder and co-managing editor of the site, I can assure you that SF has utterly nothing in common with DildO’Lielly’s (aka Bill O’Reilly) “No-Spin Zone.”

    Have you ever even looked at our site?

    Aside from the relative sillyness and/or artifice of a grown man giving himself a nickname and then referring to himself in the 3rd person, your blanket statements regarding Wesley’s career betray gross ignorance of anything factual. I can understand your antipathy for his manner, but to attempt a connection between his manner and his work/career indicates a basic lack of logical comprehension.

    So…what’s yer damage, Heather?

  193. Dave you must understand, this guy speaks in the language of ‘poop’ about his teddy bear, ‘nipples’….

    -believe me, you don’t want to know-

    And please, disregard my recommendation of further studies with Dr Muench, Mr Chin. Simone and I have a fine, longstanding friendship I would hate to see come to an end over an ill-advised, off-the-cuff suggestion on my part.

  194. William Conger Says:

    I can’t resist it. Shark is right about one thing. Some people in gatekeeper positions in Chicago have indeed favored a generally bland sort of neoconceptualism and have indeed downplayed painting and other studio centered artmaking, sometimes to the level of ridicule. I’ve agreed with Shark on that for quite a few years. I knew Ed Paschke pretty well myself and I think he was, as were most artists of that generation, including me, a pluralist. He didn’t decide for or against artists on the basis of what media or kind of work they made; it was a matter of integrity and quality that mattered –and matters. Unfortunately or unfairly, Ed, me, and others were a bit blindsided by the fact that some artists, often those most espoused by the neocon gatekeepers, were really not pluralists themselves and openly or otherwise degraded painting, “aesthetics” the personal, the individual, or anything that did not worship a purified Duchampian attitude toward artmaking. An effort to make room for some neoconceptualist outlooks, an effort grounded in open-minded pluralist aesthetics and a deeply ingrained faith in the fellowship of serious artists — again, a trait among 60s artists who experienced the societal humiliation of artists as “hippies, dopers, beatniks, losers, peaceniks” by the “establishment”.

    No wonder it was considered — by 60s artists — very bad form to ridicule a fellow artist on the basis of style or media, no matter how much his or her work differed from yours. But that pluralist openmindedness was not returned in kind in recent years. Shark correctly argues (but too screamingly for me, “sheeesh”) that a neocon generation disdains painters as retro romantic hermits. The general outlook among the gatekeepers was that the Imagist art had become naive and childish narcissistic, skill-centered, formal, provincial, and outdated and that certain leaders of that mode were too much in power in Chicago. They wanted revolution based on some vague post minimal-international-post conceptual art and they got it. They won and they have purged their court of the messy, paint stained and battered knights.

    Now, 25 years later, it seems laughable to me that some people still think painting is dead, again. As a painter I do like some neoconceptualist work, now and then, no matter the authors. Who wouldn’t like witty, playful puzzles with image-words? After all, it’s really a language thing a game of verbal metaphors, insider table talk reminiscent of the 17-18C idle aristocracy? That fantasizing of old-world Courts is reimagined at every museum opening. It’s something close to the hearts of curators, etc. who are trained to be glib and keen to word-play in cocktail dress. But any dope can see today that painting — like other skill-based, object based, practices is plenty strong everywhere, even as, foolishly, it is still being downplayed in Chicago art schools (and museums) where some MFA curricula still define the glories of the “post-studio” artist. Ironically, in an effort to be proudly at the “cutting edge” our curatorial leaders and their artists and collector followers have failed to recognize the fact that the more interesting young artists are secretly practicing drawing skills and buying how to paint books. Cutting edge art always begins in disgrace.

    What I don’t like about Shark’s outlook is his default mode of ridiculing other artists whenever he suspects criticality of his self-proclaimed position of ultimate authority. He knows damn well that some of those artists are the real deal and are not darlings or knee-jerk apologists of the now-aged and increasingly rigid gatekeepers. I don’t get the Shark name either. A great white sharks’ brain is typically 1.2oz, about the same as a cat’s. I’d argue the WK Shark is smarter than my cat. Perhaps his emphasis on a shark’s instinctual violence is a sly way of excusing himself from civil discourse which rests on a basic respect for other people, especially fellow artists. Because he goes well beyond the pale in his reckless fuming against fellow artists and is not critical in a useful way — blaring that someone, most often an artist, is a moron or worse is not criticality, only slurring insult — he finds himself alone as the “most extreme” hater and confuses that as proof of his superiority.

    Who would go as far as Shark in publicly degrading others, and himself by implication? Most hold back and retreat from that sort of vulgarity knowing that any tit for tat response will only get deeper and darker. And nobody goes as deep in those ugly waters as the Shark.

    Isn’t it time to rationally and collegially discuss the situation in Chicago, to admit that there are many highly capable artists here, some of them post, 50s, post 60s. post 70s, post 80s, and even post 90s. It takes a broad and willing optimism, free from quick ridicule, to foster new art. The bad stuff will vanish soon enough.

    Aside from his methods, one can support Shark’s overall art-political outlook. Chicago art has been damaged, yes, indeed it has, by those who lust for the generic esteem of international (still aristocratic influenced) art. The famed idiosyncratic, individual, pioneering and anti-mainstream authenticity of Chicago art — and find its roots in 1920s Chicago modernism and industrial boomtown power — is still alive here. Some of it is idea centered not practice centered but in Chicago studio practice has always been the main game. From slash and burn to monkish exactitude, Chicago art is mostly devoted to letting the ideas come from the work and not the other way around. Chicago art fuses doing and thinking. Language comes after the work, not before it. Dandy curators, art talkers, and some artists don’t like that. They want art to illustrate language instead of mystifying it.

    Some of us aren’t good at art politics and actually choose a more hermetic, studio centered life. After all, studio time is king to an artist. I’m glad for the art-politics people and especially for the resurgence of good old Chicago individualism — a proven world-recognized art outlook — but I do wish for more civility, even a rough sort of saloon civility would be fine.

  195. You’re such a killjoy Bill..errr I mean ‘William’……to slog along dealing with this crap I’ve at least got to have the option available to me to humor myself..and quit denigrating sharks -I don’t appreciate it at all! You and Dave can question my sharkiness -what can I say -I’m obviously a far more imaginative being than either of you -maybe you both need to come my way on this issue- haha!

    So I’m a little dark -so what, at least I’m not boring and what is wrong with going beyond the pale -are you some kind of self annointed judge?

    -Just remember while you were all busy being polite and civil, you gave away the store so to speak -I don’t think thats a very nice thing to do -or very civil….I would have much rather listened to you call someone an idiot or moron than corrupt an entire program…..words like ‘complacent’ come to mind and when I think of that word, Kierkegaard suddenly looms large with his notions of ‘what is truly evil-‘

    I see you as a prevaricator: I have had a difficult time respecting you -when I have seen you play smoochie schmoooch with certain behinds publicly that you have railed against -to me! privately- It reminds me of when that painting of yours went up for auction at Leslie Hindmans -you raked my friend an underling, an employee over the coals for the better part of an hour -but then when the actual power Leslie came on the line…….nice as pie Bill…..now is that polite? I have always disliked people who make a big deal about bossing around servers at restuarants- because they can…you know what I mean?

    Who knows -maybe thats just force of habit on your part -what I do know is that I am trying to get back what you gave away up at Northwestern -and yes Ed was duped along with you -while I warned you both -Ed knew he had been had -we discussed it on a regular basis.

    How could you have not known that the untalented institutionalites would of course attack anything that took a degree of skill or, talent? Are you rally that gullible?

    say what you want Bill, I have one thing going for me I haven’t always seen in you -no two things: I don’t kiss behinds, and I’m honest. I do not back down.

    what you still don’t get, is that the people you put in power hardly qualify as artists -why is that? BECAUSE THEIR GOAL IS NOT AN AESTHETIC ONE, IT IS ONLY ABOUT THE AQUISITION OF POWER- you are right -I don’t respect these people as artists nor do I intend to anytime in the near future. When you get your head out of your behind you may very well see the light yourself -as The Shark is somewhat ahead of you -both on this issue -and on those drawing collages of mine that so influenced your own (you can thank me anytime you want for that by the way-)

  196. David Roth Says:

    you’re far more imaginative than which Dave? You talkin’ to me? Based upon what? A nickname? if that’s the standard then perhaps so. I haven’t named my pecker either, so maybe I ought to consider it. funny how I missed that day in art school.

    Yer funny when yer hyperbolic.

  197. Dave, I said imaginative being, but lets not go there -I’m trying to be nice-
    and Bill, throw away that lame, canned tomato fight photo you have up on your walls -into the trash -think of it as a proclamation of artistic freedom, a removing of that leash you have around your neck (I mean come on! -you were a uhuhuhuhhh ‘bit blindsided’!?? really?-another fine feature about us sharks -we, are neckless-

  198. David Roth Says:

    “we, are neckless”

    and reckless! but hardly feckless.

    this conversation has shifted to the topic of community once again, and the morality of participation. It’s fruitful and interesting to consider the responsibilities which come with such participation.

  199. thanks Dave -and giving credit where it is due – Bill, you are dead on with your assessment that painting is strong and the whole provincial antipainting/studio skill thing here, completely outmoded DONE! -in both LA and NY and, London-

    -so now we are stuck with these talentless suburbanite power freaks you put in place, now enconsed up at Northwestern….thats just great- sheeeeeesh!,,,,,,can’t you do something, make some kind of apology, amends for what you did? Tell you what -canned tomato fight in the dumpster, all is forgiven- you can gut up and do it Bill! Its like No Exit -you just have to walk through that door and, plunk! in with the rest of the garbage…..

  200. Great post William, even if even longer than WK’s or mine usually are!

    Now throw a tomato-Molotov-Cocktail at the photo, then photograph THAT, then print it out “glicee archival ink jet print.”

  201. William Conger Says:

    Yeah, about 10 years ago I saw a few of the Shark’s collages and liked them. I liked the way he sliced and spliced them, usually all black on a messy white surface. Thery had just the right pitch of disdain for neatness but also just the right exactness of placement. I told him I liked them and they stuck in my mind. What Shark doesn’t know, perhaps, is that I was making painted paper collages and painted canvas collages back in the later 1950’s (and do them now, off and on ). Some of these were shown in NYC (Great Jones Gallery) in 1960, a show arranged by Elaine deKooning, who I had befriended earlier and who, along with Robert Mallary, aided me. Like almost everyone else of any ambition, I was doing AE stuff in the later 50s and looking for a way out, other than pop, or Duchamp routes– who at that time was still the parlor-game prankster of the art world. I hated the lightweight pop stuff but I liked the chaos of the Happenings and Rauschenberg’s sculpture, and there was, for a time, a kind of free for all messiness mixing painting with conceptual beginnings, installations, you name it. I think any artist of my age or era was imbued with a “do or die” (said to me in a very particular way by Miyoko Ito) attitude about art. Even today, when Shark insults my paintings as “academic ” or whatever, he doesn’t know that they always begin in the same way as I began a painting 50 years ago, messy, intuitive, painterly, and build from there toward a distanced sort of rigor that seeks no approval from others but has earned its own life. Academic art is made from the outside and has no inside, no deep genesis. If Shark can’t see the life and vitality in my work, then he’s not looking past his mirror. It’s not influence that I picked up from the Shark’s collages but a recognition of kinship, a full-fledged faith in the impulse for rightness. In a similar way I liked Ed’s way of “touch” painting, his most deiicate and refined way of marking the canvas that always exposed his deep sympathy for humanity in pain and was never sentimental. There are so many Chicago artists who have made important art and I’m happy to have been able to acquire some it now and then. I’ve admired art by people I admire, by people I don’t admire, and by people who don’t admire me or my work. I’ve never had one crumb of reciprocal support from many artists or critics I tried to help with jobs during my years in academia, or others who assume to be in charge, and I don’t seek it. (Besides, in academia, no one person has authority to decide appointments….there are many voices that decide). So, I’m keeping the Tomato piece on my wall, together with several other artworks Shark might despise. I’m for art as the real condition of humanity and for those who are good enough to show it and see it. I fully agree with the many people here who think the scene has been tilted toward a narrow taste. My feeling is to let that taste be and widen the scope of what’s going on. Let’s see how things stack up when all the players are really on the field. As for ridiculing other artists, count me out. I’m so damned happy (even surprised) to still be here, working in my studio — when I’m not bothered by angry fish, even if their collages are good, and memorable. Sheeesh!

  202. William, Wesley,– you guys are on the same side…now lets make up, c’mon now….big kiss.

  203. The Shark knows you ‘borrowed seriously and copiously from him at one point and no amount of historical flim flam is going to change that fact Bill! Admit it! I opened up the Tribune one day and said to myself, “self, what is your work doing here in Alan Artners review column..only its not quite as good..”….I don’t ridicule other artists Bill -just the frauds posing as artists…well maybe except for you….but you chum the water, put on a big seal suit, clang the dinner bell and jump right in!…what do you expect from The Shark?

    You should throw that rotten tomato thing out on principle:in honor of all the artists who were thrown away to make way for this dreck-

  204. “William, Wesley,– you guys are on the same side…now lets make up, c’mon now….big kiss.”

    Nice image Tony – thanks for puttin’ that one in my head.

    and Wes, my friend, I’m compelled to ask:

    “I opened up the Tribune one day and said to myself, “self…”

    When you talk to yourself, do you answer back? If the answer is yes then please call me right away.

  205. How about changing the subject to something less pleasant; I know! Lets talk about Erik Weazel!…

  206. How about we go back to the conversation about community? It’s way more interesting than the “your mother wears army boots” dialog.

  207. Oh, this is about community Dave; this is about people like Tony and me observing yet another generation coming up of provincial, kiss-butt toadies, wondering where is the payoff for sticking around for yet another chapter of this-

  208. … stay tuned …

  209. The above postings were not by the Justin Chin whose work and character were questioned by “The Shark”.

    I once again beg of you you not post as artists who have a living and active connection to the Art World.

    We for the moment are going to assume that it was another Justin Chin. But if not, please, knock it off. It is very serious and we are very concerned about it.


  210. Ya gotta admit, though, 209, well now 210 comments ain’t bad.

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