Bad at Sports on the Social Media Strategy Panel at Art Chicago

May 2, 2010 · Print This Article

Thanks to everyone for coming out to the “Social Media Strategies in Chicago’s Art Community” panel hosted by Art Critic Alicia Eler and Chicago Gallery News’ Ginny Berg at Art Chicago today. I loved talking with Karla Loring, Museum of Contemporary Art; Crystal Pernell, Hyde Park Art Center; and Carrie Heinonen, Art Institute of Chicago about all things tech & strategy and hope that it was useful or atleast entertaining for those of you in attendance. Every group on that dais has my upmost respect for the work they do in the Arts day in and out and it is an honor to have Bad at Sports counted among them.

As promised in the talk there is a program that is quite useful in Twitter to let you know who starts following you and more importantly who drops your account. At the time I was trying to think of Chirpstats and couldn’t get the word out but the great Crystal Pernell was kind enough to remind me of Qwitter which does more then Chirpstats by working to tie the drop to a specific tweet. This can be extremely useful if at times a bit misleading but a great alternative to Chirpstats which is only a weekly update but less taxing on an email account.

The net is a wonderful place to meet, share, promote and wallow in all the things you love or cherish and social media for me is a great tool to help accomplish & magnify those desires. I still say though the most important thing is to service the end users like they are your boss, anything less is putting the cart before the horse. Feed them data, facts, images & yes even sugar and rumors some days but remember that twitter, facebook, digg, stumbleupon, and whatever is next are only a means to that end. It’s something that even we have to be vigilant to keep in perspective and doesn’t come easy for anyone especially when you have to answer to a comittee; I have deep sympathy there. I look forward to the next time we can get everyone together and have honest and open talks about how we go about trying to promote and grow this thing we love called Art.

Thanks again for coming out!




Sculptor Chris Antemann Awarded $35,000 Grant

May 2, 2010 · Print This Article

Antemann Detail - Tea Party - Ferrin GallerySculptor Chris Antemann will receive the first prize grant award of $35,000 from the Virginia A. Groot Foundation offered since 1988 to artists working in 3D.

Antemann, a sculptor creates contemporary erotic works in porcelain dealing with intimacy, love, and power in post-modern relationships.  Inspired by 18th C. porcelain figurines, their place in the home, and the social contexts that are inherited by such materials & history.

Represented by Ferrin Gallery, Antemann is exhibiting recent sculpture and photography from her series “Battle of the Britches” at Art Chicago through Monday, May 3.




BaS Art Chicago Coverage: Thursday Opening Preview Photos

April 30, 2010 · Print This Article

Due to time constraints little time was spent on the 12th Floor going through Art Chicago and a majority of these photos are from the Next Preview Opening. Which from the talk that I heard no one will complain about (even though what little I saw it looked to be better then previous years but Tomato Tomäto).

Coming away from the Next show much can be said about the much smaller size, omni presence of Kavi Gupta’s Gallery & connections, growth of paid Marketing Partnerships in the show & the search for “Big” things to fill all the empty space. Having said that though I walked away with the feeling not of abuse but more how fragile this years Next really was, right or wrong. Any real complaignts I had seemed to fall more with the Marts operations side which seemed to either be skeleton staffed, temp hires or just poorly managed in general. A marked decline from previous years effort.

Best work of the show for me personally was surprisingly the independent groups and apartment galleries representation (which I couldn’t say in previous years) they really stepped up this year in both polish, substance, displaying actual works not items they want to convince you were finished works & energy. Also I don’t think enough can be said for the works in the show by Tony Tasset this year. They were well positioned, welcomed surprises & overall great work by a artist who deserves his reputation.




Top 5 Weekend Picks! (4/30-5/2)

April 29, 2010 · Print This Article

It’s the weekend of art fairs (and labor struggles), and another weekend of listings from Yours Truly. This was a hard pick, as a lot of great shows are opening this weekend (and everything in River North and West Loop are open, at least Saturday night). If you do make it into Art Chicago and NEXT (make sure you get one of those free passes floating around), you should defiantly come take part in Tara Strickstein’s Bloodshed Event: Pataphor, where Jeriah and I will be doing battle with participants. Alright everyone, start your engines. It’s time for art, and time for free drinks! Hooray!

1. SAIC Graduate Exhibition at The Sullivan Galleries

Come see what those freshly minted MFAs are churnin’ out.

The Sullivan Galleries are located at 33 S. State St. Reception Friday, 8-10pm.

2. Lazy Shadows at Golden Gallery

Awesome new work by Jessica Labatte. Come and enjoy the smoke and mirrors.

Golden Gallery is located at 816 W. Newport Ave. Reception Friday, 7-10pm.

3. All the Colors of the Dark at Ebersmoore

Collage and cryptic messages? Oh, so Victorian. Work by Alexis Mackenzie.

Ebersmoore is located at  213 N. Morgan. Reception Saturday, 6-10pm.

4. Passing the Torch: The Chicago Students of Callahan and Siskind at Stephen Daiter Gallery

Come see the children of the masters. Work by Barbara Crane, Stef Leinwohl, Joseph Jachna, Joseph Sterling, Kenneth Josephson, Charles Swedlund, Tom Knudtson, Bob Tanner, and Mary Ann Lea (Dorr).

Stephen Daiter Gallery  is located at  230 W. Superior St. Reception Saturday, 5-8pm.

5. Erect at Julius Ceasar

Dana DeGiulio holding up the world at Julius Ceasar.

Julius Ceasar is located at 3144 W Carroll Ave, 2G. Reception Sunday, 4-7pm.




BaS ArtChicago Coverage: Tuesday – The Cost of Doing Business

April 27, 2010 · Print This Article

Well it’s almost that time of the year again, High Holy week in Chicago where we all pilgrimage to the Merchandise Mart and endlessly complain how much we don’t want to be there. Which is kind of a shame really? The doors haven’t even opened, exhibitors are still unloading their wares (oh I’m sorry is that word verboten? 🙂 and there is already a collective shrug/ennui working it’s way from gallerists to collectors to The Tribune. I am not suprised, unaware as to why or in disagreement really. The only thing less exciting then spending money on a show during a depression (oh those words again) that is collectivly expected to be poorly attended, poorly reviewed, have low sales and be generally as exciting, sharp & sexy as a slightly used chew toy is to not have one at all and instead we all stay home cleaning our patio decks/yards. It’s not that I don’t get it, I do. Make the best of it, stay together for the kids, you go to war with the army you have not the army you want (yea don’t like the taste of that phrase do you lol).

In a little bit here I am going to lay into the Mart over something and I am sure it will not be the first or last time that either I, Meg, Claudine, The Tribune, Rhona Hoffman or some prairie dog on the net uninformed or unfairly chimes off but before I do does anyone remember the word “Fun”?

If you work in the Art world in any capacity right now you could be easily making a better salary in say Print on mean average so if you’re still here it’s because you love it, chose it & in fact tell everyone else it chose you. So if we are not going to make a fortune, redefine art for the hundredth time this Century, rock the culture with something new or even agree what is the new Deer, Squid or Skull for this year can we at least agree to have some fun? I’m not saying fiddle while Rome burns. Do your due diligence and once that is done, share a laugh, have a meal with a large group, drink, dance,  greet old friends from out of town or even Continent but cut the emo angst and smile (Even you Scott Speh).

Arts a joyful struggle, it never becomes a breeze & it is never the way we want it to be 100% so in the gap between perfection & worthlessness lets remember why we got into this and have some fun cause everyone from the unpaid gallery interns to Chris Kennedy is working hard believe it or not, I know.

Having now said that, there are reports coming in that the Merchandise Mart is looking to charge the exhibitors $49.99 a day for wifi access. Now I have personally worked to provide wifi access for over 100 exhibitors in a large space and can say it is a thankless task that is readily abused by 10% of the users, requires constant oversight if you have power fluctuations of any sort, is consistently reported down when in reality it works and the problem is exhibitor’s laptops running Chinese drivers, or Macs with more warez then actual programs.

Oh do I have sympathy but $49.99 a day let me say that again so that it sinks in $49.99 a day is “screw off” pricing that you do to chase away clients so that you don’t have to provide the service to many & the ones that you do it’s crazy profit. So is that where the business model is right now with the Mart? Are things so tight that we are looking to cut costs and services or gouge to bridge the gap? If so I am sorry for your troubles but if not this is beyond the pale pricing and even I am going to call bunk on that.

Change it before you open, it’s the best PR you can have with exhibitors stuck in one place for hours on end when you can provide reasonably priced internet. Trust me many would rather surf and email then sell, you think I’m joking but I’m not. There is no excuse for that price point unless we’re talking 10MBs up and down which I almost know we are not.

Lets do some good sales, make some good connections & remember have some fun. I’ve seen accountants smile more lately.