Wednesday Clips 3-9-10

March 10, 2010 · Print This Article

Pamela Fraser, Untitled (Double Orange), 2009. From "Pamela Fraser: Works on Paper" at Golden, through March 27, 2010

A few noteworthy links and stories for your midweek perusal…plus a freebie at the bottom.

****College Art Association (CAA) has made eighty-one audio recordings from the panels at last month’s conference in Chicago available for download. They’re kind of expensive ($149.95 for the complete Set of CAA 2010 Conference Recordings on Interactive MP3 Audio CD-ROM or MP3 download; $24.95 for an individual panel MP3 download), but if you couldn’t come up with the cash to attend the conference in full, like moi, this could be a great way to access the panels you missed in person. I’ll be choosy, but will most likely buy at least one.

****“Palestinian Avatars”: This is fascinating; apparently, the movie Avatar and its indigenous aliens the Na’vi have been appropriated by Palestinian rights activists, who painted themselves blue and wore costumes inspired by the Na’vi during a recent protest in Bil’in, a Palestinian town divided in half by the wall. This post on Provisions Library provides further background along with some pretty brilliant analysis: “The most striking aspect of this re-appropriation of a distinctly American, Avatar meme, is the irony. And right across the barbed-wire fence opposite from Bil’in are Israeli soldiers whose weapons supplied by American taxpayers. So, as Joseph Nye would explain, that’s an example of U.S. “hard power.” Then, on the other side, the Palestinians to score by appropriating imagery siphoned with sophistication from the mighty currents of American “soft power.” Wow. Elsewhere, you can find additional photographs of what’s been dubbed the “Palestinian Avatar”  protests here, along with a video of the demonstration.

****Artnet’s Charlie Finch asks “Who is Dakis Joannou?” Finch speculates that Joannou’s future as the Chairman of J&P (Overseas) and J&P-AVAX, both publicly traded Greek companies, “could yield two divergent prospects for a complex, interlocking business, dependent on amortization and wide debt-to-capital ratios. The first is that Dakis is smart enough and aggressive enough to take advantage of buying opportunities during a worldwide recession and increase his bottom line significantly. The second is that J&P is so overleveraged and so dependent on the luxury market that it is at serious risk of default, should its capital pipeline dry up. J&P’s low stock price would indicate a potential problem in this area.” If it’s the latter, it’s probably safe to assume that Joannou may indeed peel off some of that Skin Fruit in the not-so-distant future.

****Ikea plans to commission major works by contemporary artists Piotr Uklanski, Jeppe Hein and Jim Lambie for its “airport-sized,” Moscow-based development slated for  2012.

****Auction sales for work by African-American artists surged at recent Swann sale, and the market for art by African Americans continues to grow.

****The Grand Rapids Art Museum will present GRAM and Ox-Bow: Joint Centennial Celebration Exhibition and Artist Series this summer. 30+ artists from throughout Ox-Bow’s history will be featured at the Grand Rapids Art Museum in a special exhibition. (via Curated).

****I Like Your Work: Art and Etiquette: a pamphlet published by the contemporary art journal Paper Monument, addresses the topic of “manners in the art world” via interviews with 38 artists, critics, curators and dealers. Read this excerpt, a series of questions about art-world politesse posed to artists Michelle Grabner and Ryan Steadman, online here.

****Ohhhhh. So. Incredibly. Beautiful: An Elizabethan Bestiary: Retold. Go click on this one right away, you won’t be disappointed.

****I am not one of those women who is “into shoes”, but Dezeen’s top ten list of past shoe features makes me wish I were a bit more of a fetishist when it comes to this particular area of my body. Though no way in  hell would I ever wear these french bread loafers.

****Jokes: Philosophical Thoughts on Joking Matters, by Ted Cohen, is now available for free download at The University of Chicago Press website – for the month of March only. (The Chicago Blog). The U of C Press offers a free downloadable book each month, so check back to see what else they’ll have available for you in the future!

****An exhibition of Grateful Dead paraphernalia opens at the New York Historical Society…and no, its not that kind of paraphernalia.

****And finally….all you need to know about Professional Female Stoners. This is not, unfortunately, a description of an up-and-coming growth sector in the jobs market.




The Biggest Top 5 You’ve Ever Seen!

February 10, 2010 · Print This Article

Ok, so for those of you who don’t know yet, CAA (College Art Association) has dubbed Chicago worthy for it’s pedagogical adventures, and has settled in our fair city for the weekend. As a member of CAA, I’ll be cruising from lecture to lecture the next few days, trying to suck up as much strange knowledge as I can while the circus is in town. But I’m not the only one excited about the CAA crew. As a result of the conference, just about everyone else in town is trotting out something or other, much of which is AWESOME! As a result, I bring you The Biggest Top 5 You’ve Ever Seen! Rather than picking individual galleries for the Top 5, I’ve corralled a Top 5 of places (in no particular order) you should go this weekend. Hope ya’ll enjoy.

1. Pilsen

The self-proclaimed Chicago Arts District is holding it’s monthly 2nd Fridays round of openings. Here’s the places I’d go if I were you:

Chicago Art Department – 1837 S. Halsted. Cultural Excavation, work by Christopher Piatt, Ben Valentine, Wayne Bertola, Virginia Broersma, Allison Rae Butkus, Seth Gershberg, Jennifer Hines, Jennifer Jackson, Sarah Leitten, Amanda Paulson, Aaron Wooten and others. Reception Friday, from 6-10pm.

ROOMS Gallery – 645 W 18th St. ORACLE:CHANNELING, with Marrakesh & Todd Frugia. Performance Friday, from 8-10pm.

Read more




College Art Association Quantifies the Economic Downturn

February 9, 2010 · Print This Article

The CAA which holds it’s yearly conference in Chicago is this weekend and to give a face to the economic downturn (and nightmares to every newly minted MFA looking for a teaching position) they realesed a report detailing the decline in positions from FY2008 to FY2009. In short we are talking almost a 38% decline across the board.

Ceramics & Fiber continue the steepest decline posting around 40% and Sculpture/Installation/Environmental Art posts a surprising growth of 125%. Art History continues to be the most resistant to overall change but still shows growth in Asian studies at the limited expense of Modernism/20th Century American Art.

More detailed data (including state by state breakdowns) and the entire report can be seen here

Studio Art FY09 FY08
Any 629 1,005
Graphic/Industrial/Object 185 246
Digital/Media/Animation 150 220
Drawing/Printmaking/Paper 96 130
Sculpture/Installation/Environmental Art 92 99
Ceramics/Metals/Fiber 89 92
Photography 85 143
Art Education 73 90
Film/Video 70 89
Foundations 59 90



Wednesday Clips

May 20, 2009 · Print This Article

Shannon Keller, Knitter. Keller's work is on view at Show Cave in L.A. (via World's Best Ever).A few stories, blog posts, and interesting discussions in Chicago and beyond that are on my mind this week.

**Image credit: Shannon Keller, Knitter. Keller’s work is currently on view at Show Cave in L.A. (via The World’s Best Ever).

*CAA Study finds over-reliance on part-time faculty in American higher education.

*New York Times looks at how artists are adjusting to economic hardship.

*Edward Winkleman asks his readers why the view that art is ‘unmasculine’ still persists?

*Chicago artist and illustrator Lauren Nassef’s “A Drawing a Day” still going strong.

*Joanne Mattera bites back after receiving a cease and desist letter warning her not to write about vanity galleries (a.k.a. ‘pay to show’ schemes).

*The architecture of ‘evil lairs’ at BLDGBLOG (via C-Monster). Makes me long for the days I still had time to play videogames.

*Chicagoist’s report on the Society for News Design’s conference and discussions about what’s happening in the Chicago journalism scene. Very interesting write-up here, including follow-up comments.

*”The practice of art gets the criticism it deserves”–Great piece on how the internet is changing critics and art criticism by John Haber.

*Another good read on the above topic: “Arts Writing and ‘The New Thing'” at Peripheral Vision. (Meg has also twittered numerous of-the-moment links on the topic of arts journalism this past week, make sure to check those out too).

That’s all for now. I’m off to see Several Silences at The Renaissance Society.