To refresh your memory, The Bare Square wrote about Marni back in October 2011. She sparked controversy and conversation across the globe by giving birth in a gallery as a performance art piece. Her life’s work as a performance artist, the presence of medical professionals, and the limited nature of the “public” performance to a handful of people did not silence the strident criticisms, which ranged from accusations of endangerment of her child to narcissism and ego.
For my part, my taste for performance art is evolving at best. Still, I admired Kotak’s willingness to thumb her nose at people like me and be controversial.
She’s at it again.
The aforementioned e-mail linked to a video. Marni “announced” the following:
“Dear Friends and Family,
I am so excited to announce to you all Baby Ajax’s new partnership with Colgate-Palmolive. In exchange for their sponsorship of his life for the next 18 years, Ajax has been tattooed with the Ajax logo and will serve as International Ambassador of Goodwill for the Ajax product line. We are very excited about this new venture. Please click on this link to view our new advertisement for Ajax, stronger than dirt!
Marni, Jason & Ajax”
To our knowledge, in spite of the millions of pixels that lit with opinions on Kotak in October, her latest e-mail update did not cause as much of a stir. We did find this article today, but beyond that–not much.
Here’s the video:
Seeing how yesterday was April Fool’s Day, it’s my opinion that the video was simply an artistic prank, again designed to provoke.
Perhaps Kotak’s rib-poking suffered from deflection and distraction caused by the biggest news show in the world–60 Minutes.
The Bare Square has often shared its admiration for 60 Minutes. Jen and I watch almost every Sunday. This past Sunday, veteran 60 Minutes correspondent Morley Safer revisited a recurring beat of his–the art world. More specifically, he visited Art Basel Miami. (Frankly, Jen had more entertaining coverage. Check it out here.)
Watch his report below:
New York art critic Jerry Saltz had almost immediate reaction. Jen noticed and shared on Facebook–and Jerry “liked” the share. (Thanks Jerry!)
Is Safer right, or too safe? Is Saltz right, or just salty? Is Kotak an artist, or seeking her Kodak moment? (OK, I couldn’t resist that last one.)
Comments are activated–let us know! Or hit us up on Facebook!
Though 97% of 2012 remains ahead of us, that first 3% has FLOWN by. We’re almost halfway through January! How are those resolutions going?
Whatever vices you’ll miss, in exchange pick some art dates you won’t want to miss!
In Part Four of our five-part series, we leave Manhattan for one of the most underrated and often overlooked major venues–The Brooklyn Museum! Thus far, we’ve suggested key exhibits at The MoMA, The Met, and The Whitney.
Check out art from the Jazz Age, from a Bravo TV reality show winner, from a Red Hook-based artist, and from a pop art and street art icon. Brooklyn certainly knows how to mix it up. But don’t dally–two of these shows close in the next three weeks!
Paul Cadmus by Luigi Lucioni, 1928. (Image from The Brooklyn Museum.)
How did American artists represent the Jazz Age? The exhibition Youth and Beauty: Art of the American Twenties brings together for the first time the work of sixty-eight painters, sculptors, and photographers who explored a new mode of modern realism in the years bounded by the aftermath of the Great War and the onset of the Great Depression. American artists of the Jazz Age struggled to express the experience of a dramatically remade modern world, demonstrating their faith in the potentiality of youth and in the sustaining value of beauty.
This exhibition highlights the work of Kymia Nawabi, the season-two winner of Bravo’s series Work of Art: The Next Great Artist, a recently concluded creative competition among contemporary artists from across the United States for a cash prize and an exhibition at the Brooklyn Museum. The judges for the Bravo show included series host China Chow; Bill Powers, a New York gallery owner and arts writer; and Jerry Saltz, art critic for New York magazine. Art auctioneer Simon de Pury served as a mentor to the contestants, and a new guest judge joined the panel each week.
Nawabi’s presentation, which she titled Not for Long, My Forlorn when it appeared on the final episode of Work of Art, may be seen as an expression of both her personal mythology and her ideas on the cyclical nature of life. Produced over a period of three months, it includes twelve paintings and two sculptures inspired by the Egyptian deity Thoth, most often represented as a man with the head of an ibis.
The third exhibition in the Raw/Cooked series features the work of Red Hook-based artist Shura Chernozatonskaya. For her Brooklyn Museum presentation, she has created two site-specific painting installations. The first consists of thirty-three canvases combined to create one large-scale work, displayed in the Museum’s Rubin Lobby. Each canvas features a composition of circles, evoking traffic lights, dominoes, and the rhythms of Latin music. The second installation, located in the Beaux-Arts Court, draws inspiration from the nearby European paintings collection.
Untitled by Keith Haring, 1980. (Image from The Brooklyn Museum.)
Keith Haring: 1978–1982 is the first large-scale exhibition to explore the early career of one of the best-known American artists of the twentieth century. Tracing the development of Haring’s extraordinary visual vocabulary, the exhibition includes 155 works on paper, numerous experimental videos, and over 150 archival objects, including rarely seen sketchbooks, journals, exhibition flyers, posters, subway drawings, and documentary photographs. Pieces on view will include a number of very early works never before seen in public; seven video pieces, including Haring Paints Himself into a Corner (his first video piece) and Tribute to Gloria Vanderbilt; and collages created from cut-up fragments of his own writing, history textbooks, and newspapers.
Keep your calendar open for the last part of our five-part series, and please share with friends! What shows have you added to your calendar so far?
Of course, the information explosion has affected all the arts–what makes the visual arts so special?
Now, you can join Meetup groups and Facebook groups–you can even “friend” New Yorker art critic Jerry Saltz. For the first time, people without an art education can connect with major visual artists, art venues, and opinions, like never before. In the end, their own opinions become more clear.
Young emerging artists have YouTube channels like Val’s Art Diary, with 50,000 subscribers and art for sale on eBay. While the internet has led change in a variety of fields, some of the established art world has been late to the party. For example, the VIP Art Fair, opening this week, will be the first time major global galleries offer their artwork online and en masse.
Fifty years after Warhol, twenty-five years after Basquiat, a handful of artists have harnessed the power of the street, of free daily visibility, to make the leap into galleries and museums. Watch Exit Through The Gift Shop, and you’ll see an example of how it’s being done.
The now-closed gallery Deitch Projects produced Artstar, the first TV art reality show, in 2006. Work of Art, The Next Great Artist followed in 2010. Work Of Art is back for a second season, and yet another art-based show is in development.
The Bare Square sees all of these developments as positive. If the members of the art intelligentsia want to crow about something, crow about declining popular interest in the arts. Unless the art world embraces new approaches, visual art could go the way of symphonic music in New Jersey and Hawaii.
Even the Metropolitan Opera recognized that only bold approaches could reverse the alienation of everyday people from an art form full of meaning and introspection. Under the leadership of general manager Peter Gelb, the Met started simulcasting performances in Times Square and in movie theaters in 2006.
The Met, Live in HD, has been a huge success, grossing $48 million in box office last year, garnering nearly 1,000,000 paid viewers in 500 theaters in 46 countries around the world. Most importantly, he averted “the extinction of the audience.”
“My goal here was to see everyone experience in opera in a new way,” said Gelb.
Curiosity by Regi Müller
The Bare Square exists to give everyone a chance to go to a NYC gallery opening or to learn about emerging artists. The Bare Square Store exists to give everyone a chance to own fine art without spending tens of thousands of dollars. For as little as $20, everyone can take part in the Egalitarian Art Revolution and buy the reserved simplicity of an exclusive limited edition of nAscent Artist Regi Müller’s Curiosity.
This isn’t about populism replacing experts. Experts and respected opinions always help seekers of truth. Egalitarian means “characterized by belief in the equality of all people.” The Egalitarian Art Revolution sees the TV, social media, web video, and online resources like The Bare Square as an important development in the visual arts, and you as a crucial participant. What do you think?
In Part 3, you’ll hear the true story of someone who thinks your opinion doesn’t matter. Don’t miss it.
And don’t forget to click the buttons below to share this article! Thanks.
Jerry Saltz, famed NYC art critic for New York Magazine, this week published his “2010 NYC Top Ten List”. Saltz rates his favorite shows of 2010, saying that he sees about 30 shows a week and is attending art shows 48 weeks out of the year. Exhibitions presented by The Met, The Guggenheim & The Whitney all made his list.
So I haven’t seen anywhere near 1500 shows in the past year, but….
Some of my favorite shows this year were (in no particular order):
The Tim Burton exhibit at The MoMA – It doesn’t get more imaginative & prolific than Tim Burton.