Interview with Adam Ekberg

February 5, 2010 · Print This Article

Cocktail umbrella and Bic lighter, 2009

Adam Ekberg has a lovely exhibition of new photographs up at Thomas Robertello Gallery that closes Saturday, February 6th — that’s tomorrow people! — so if you haven’t seen it, you should do the proverbial rush right out and see it thing before it closes. After that, get yourself over to the MCA, where Adam’s work can be seen in the group show Elements of Photography, up through April 6th. I had a brief virtual chat with the very busy Mr. Ekberg this week, and am most appreciative of him for taking the time to answer my questions.

CI: In the brief statement that accompanies the portfolio of images on your website, you mention ‘lens fallibility’ as one of the means by which you activate otherwise ordinary environments.  Could you elaborate a bit on how the notion of fallibility operates in your process?

Aberration #12, 2006

AE: These pictures have been discussed as referential to spirit photography but I like to think of them more in terms of the camera malfunctioning due to misuse. Pointing the camera at the sun is generally recognized as a bad idea on the level of putting balled up tinfoil in the microwave. If you are to go to a camera shop you can even purchase a variety of lens shades that prevent this effect from happening. I love the mistakes within images, Diane Arbus had a tendency to have  vignetting in her prints and Nan Goldin always used flash in an elementary way which made her work feel even more personal and intimate.

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Hamza Walker Wins $100,000 Ordway Prize

February 5, 2010 · Print This Article

Hamza Walker, Director of Education and Associate Curator of The Renaissance Society at the University of Chicago

Congratulations to Hamza Walker, curator at The Renaissance Society — it has just been announced that he’s won the Ordway Prize from Creative Link for the Arts and the New Museum!  Walker, along with artist Artur Å»mijewski, will receive an unrestricted award of $100,000. Here’s the text of the announcement in full:

“Creative Link for the Arts and the New Museum have announced Hamza Walker, the Director of Education and Associate Curator at Chicago’s Renaissance Society, and Polish artist Artur Å»mijewski, as the recipients of the Ordway Prize. An international panel of Nominators and a Jury of leading arts world figures-led by Jennifer McSweeney, Director of Creative Link for the Arts, and Richard Flood, Chief Curator at the New Museum-selected the Ordway Prize recipients from a global pool of nominees. Walker and Å»mijewski will each receive an unrestricted cash prize of $100,000.

“Working with artists is a reward in itself, and I feel privileged at being so generously honored for my passion. I wish I had a grand vision for the award, but as it stands, the bricks and mortar of my life are in severe need of tuckpointing,” said Hamza Walker.

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Call for Proposals | Version 10 Infrastructures and Territories

February 4, 2010 · Print This Article

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It is that time of year again. Version is now looking for submissions for their 10th festival entitled Infrastructures and Territories. It will be taking place from April 22nd to May 2nd.  Deadline for all submissions is March 1st, 2010.

via Lumpen:

Version 2010: now seeking proposals and presentations about tactics and strategies that help sustain our communities, find better uses of our resources, and maintain and expand our networks.  For eleven days and nights, we will explore the best practices and boldest failures in interventionist, participatory, and collective social, political, and cultural practices. This year’s theme is presented in order to bring together groups and individuals seeking additional methods for connecting our networks and creating solid foundations for the practice of art, education and social activism well into the next decade. We want to use this opening during the current economic and political crisis to expand and amplify our shared ideals, values and strategies for survival and expansion.

Join us to amplify micro-movements and nowtopian ideas!

The festival will include: community gardens, historical re-enactments, antiwar organizing, an art parade, an artist-run art expo, a catalog of interventionist strategies, networking between independent groups and spaces, inflatable art, one-night exhibition formats, anti-oligarchy planning sessions, DIY and DIT media, the Terminator Bar,  a mobile silkscreen printing cart, a national WPA-inspired public poster project, a free school, impressive musical performances, boring theoretical nonsense, mapping projects, pop-up galleries, Korean/Polish BBQ and your proposals.

If you would like to participate in this year’s festival please view our Program Platforms.

When you are ready you will be able to submit your proposal online via this website.
All submissions are public.”

The Art of the Steal Documentary

February 2, 2010 · Print This Article

“The Art of the Steal” chronicles the long and dramatic struggle for control of the Barnes Foundation, a private collection of art valued at more than $25 billion. In 1922, Dr. Albert C. Barnes formed a remarkable educational institution around his priceless collection of art, located just five miles outside of Philadelphia. Now, more than 50 years after Barnes death, a group of moneyed interests have gone to court for control of the art, and intend to bring it to a new museum in Philadelphia. Standing in their way is a group of Barnes former students and his will, which contains strict instructions stating the Foundation should always be an educational institution, and that the paintings may never be removed. Will they succeed, who has the right to direct the future of the collection?

Tuesday’s Video pick | RuPaul

February 2, 2010 · Print This Article

Last night was the season premier of RuPaul’s  “Drag Race”. While I do not have cable, I did find myself sifting through videos from the 90s and was a little surprised when I watched his 1993 video for Supermodel (You Better Work). Maybe I was too young to remember the campy greatness that is this week’s pick but this video is so amazing. Especially if you think of what was popular at the time, typically grunge and gangster rap.

If you saw the header, yes that is RuPaul as both Michelle and Barack Obama

“You can call me he. You can call me she. You can call me Regis and Kathie Lee; I don’t care! Just as long as you call me.”