Last week, Cincinnati opened to a bevy of international artists and art tourists with the start of the city’s second FotoFocus Biennial. Though the event itself promises plenty of exciting sights, with 50 participating local venues all dedicated to celebrating “lens-based art” throughout the month of October, newcomers to the city should also keep a lookout for some of the impressive mural work that graces its walls. Not that they’ll have to look all that hard: Thanks to public arts organization ArtWorks, the streets of Cincinnati are covered in all kinds of painterly designs. Below is a small selection of some of the most eye-catching examples.
In the Air – Art News & Gossip
Archive for the ‘Off Beat’ Category
So we’re not sure if you guys are aware, but women are doing things. Like, all the time. In all kinds of places, too — probably even in your very neighborhood. (Are you a woman reading this article right now? Case in point.) And still, we here in the Media tend to get very excited when women do these things that they do. Today, however, one Tumblr has soundly lapped us all in appreciating women and their various activities, and that Tumblr is called “Women Looking at Art.” Want to guess what’s in the pictures?
John Waters’ performance of “This Filthy World” at the opening weekend of Cincinnati’s FotoFocus Biennial was full of useful information: that “blouse” can be gay male slang for “a feminine top,” that “blossom” is something you never want to Google without your Safe Search on, that what appears to be a shot of Divine’s genitalia in “Female Trouble” is actually a stand-in. But amid the behind-the-scenes stories and Ansel Adams digs was a nugget of wisdom directly applicable to young filmmakers and photographers alike. Waters extolled the virtues of always having a unit photographer — that is, someone on set to take pictures of the filmmaking process — because, as he pointed out, that iconic shot of Divine from “Pink Flamingos,” gun brandished, was never actually in the movie. “You remember the stills,” he said, citing also the “From Here to Eternity” beach scene.
It’s nonstop with the Marina Abramovic news this week. On Wednesday we learned that the performance artist wanted to collaborate with Lars Von Trier and today Sean Kelly Gallery announced that it will be hosting her first New York show, post-MoMA retrospective, later this month. Titled “Generator,” the show continues Abramovic’s stint of performances based on “nothingness.” Similar to “512 Hours,” which just closed at London’s Serpentine Gallery, the exhibition will focus on audience experience.
Yesterday we learned that Marina Abramovic publicly solicited Lars Von Trier to aid her in the creation of “Seven Deaths,” a multi-part film that will chronicle the demise of seven opera singers, with each segment to be helmed by a different director. In her video plea, which she released via Sweden’s public service channel SVT, Abramovic addressed Von Trier directly: “You really bring the actors on the edge of complete nervous breakdowns,” she said. “Because I am a performance artist, I understand very well what you are doing.” Indeed, Von Trier is likely no stranger to performance art, what with speculation that his bombastic press conference statements are more put-on than, say, actual unbridled misogyny; it seems theirs is a match made in a particularly washed-out, unflinching heaven. So, in anticipation of what ought to be the beginning of a beautiful partnership, we’ve dreamed up a few other projects that the dynamic duo might take on.
Actress, writer, director, performance artist, app designer, and all-around mistress of quirk Miranda July now has another title to add to her expansive resume, and that title is “handbag designer.” In collaboration with Laurel Consuelo Broughton of Welcome Companions, whom she apparently came across in a random online browse, July has created “The Miranda” — a svelte, red, structured pocketbook with a long shoulder strap — which debuted yesterday as part of a limited edition sale at Opening Ceremony (for an even $1,725). “But wait,” you’re probably asking, “where are the myriad buttons, each from a beloved grandmother’s sweater? The patina of lipstick kisses from a thousand random pedestrians? Just what about this bag makes it so ‘Miranda’?” Well, just wait until she opens it.
If I had to guess, I’d say that when David Lynch accidentally overdoes it on cough medicine, his fever dreams look something like Isabella Rossellini’s “Green Porno.” Hosted on the Sundance Channel beginning in 2008, the series features the actress demonstrating, in what could very loosely be termed an educational context, the sexual habits of various insects and sea creatures. And yes, “demonstrating” means standing in front of a crudely drawn set in a series of spandex costumes, acting out her own lilting narration and sometimes chiming in with oddly lascivious dialogue. Fans of “The Daily Show” may recall when Jon Stewart featured a topical episode of the series in 2010, during New York’s bedbug epidemic. “Is this going to get weird?” he asked sheepishly into the camera, and was promptly answered by a close-up of Rosselini’s bedbug-costumed head cooing “He ejaculates into my wound!” Perhaps a better question, then, would be, “Could this get any weirder?” Enter, the prospect of “Green Porno Live!”
If you were born a female-bodied individual, chances are, at some point in your childhood, someone thought it might be appropriate to give you a doll. Or maybe you picked one out for yourself — even made one out of yarn or wayward buttons. Maybe you named it, had tea with it, whispered secrets to it long into the night. Maybe you thought your doll was the best doll in the world. Well, it turns out, you were wrong: On Wednesday, September 24, a doll made by famed German manufacturers Kammer & Reinhardt sold for £242,500 (about $394,000) at Bonhams, shattering the worldwide record for a doll sale at auction, and thereby crowning herself the reigning queen of all eerily lifelike part-ceramic children.
To accompany his current show at the Rubin Museum of Art, “Inspired by India,” Francesco Clemente has created a series of talks that bring together eight people “he’s selected as exceptional.” Called “Clemente x 8,” the live conversations will see Clemente one-on-one with Nas, Alfonso Cuarón, and Billie Tsien, among others. “Both Clemente and his guest will bring to the conversation a found object that will act as catalyst to a freewheeling conversation,” according to press materials. Patti Smith kicks off the series on October 1.