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In the Air – Art News & Gossip

Archive for the ‘Off Beat’ Category

The Onion or the Art World?: Artist Seeks Needle in Haystack

As part of In the Air’s intrepid art world coverage, we’re continuing with our exciting new feature that answers the age-old question, “Is it an Onion article, or just the art world?” Because sometimes these headlines just seem too good to be true, but then they are, and that’s even better. (Check out our last installment, regarding Maurizio Cattelan’s recent show at Artissima, titled “Shit and Die.”) Today, however, we’re here to talk about the fact that Italian performance artist Sven Sachsalber will spend two days trying to find a needle in a haystack at the Palais de Tokyo — literally. Repeating a performance held at London’s Limoncello Gallery in 2012, the artist will spend from noon through midnight sifting through a large pile of straw, looking for a needle that has been placed therein; though the performance is only billed to last for 48 hours, the museum acknowledges that it may well take longer.

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Original Batmobile for Sale (DC Geeks, Start Your Engines)

Luxury car auctions may not quite be everyone’s bag, but a lot going up at Heritage Auctions in Dallas on December 6 should snag some serious attention, if only because, you guys — you guys it’s the Batmobile. As in, the Batmobile — the first-known DC Comics–licensed model from 1963, even predating the version that appeared on the Batman TV show in 1965. (Apparently, it was built by an independent mechanic just for kicks in his New Hampshire garage, before a DC-affiliated dairy company leased it and toured from town to town to promote Batman-themed fruit drinks.) Okay, sure, it may not be that high-tech, Hum-Vee-esque, explodes-into-a-motorcycle deal Christian Bale drives in The Dark Knight, but given its recently restored swooping black exterior, complete with red accenting, the swank factor is high. So, for those DC enthusiasts holding onto some priceless first editions, this may be the time to hit eBay and drum up the estimated $500,000 needed for this pinnacle of vintage comics cred. If nothing else, you’d be ensured some sweet Caped Crusader–themed LARPing.

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A Comprehensive Guide to Crying at Art Exhibitions

We’ve all been there: Much like Stendhal in Florence, intrepid art viewers have probably come across an artwork or two that moved us, perhaps even to tears, perhaps even in public. So, in an effort to address this phenomenon of museum waterworks, the Independent published an article titled “From Millet’s ‘The Angelus’ to Rothko, why do some works of art make us cry?” For starters, author Philip Hook asserts that “People weep at concerts when listening to transcendent music; people weep watching films or reading sad books; but fewer tears are shed in front of works of visual art” — a thesis tested, we can only assume, by a series of field experts running control groups at each venue type, collecting specimens of the emitted eye-saline, and analyzing them for relative quotients of Sad. (The verdict? Rothkos. Everyone is just losing it over Rothkos.) Still, despite the case Hook ultimately makes for an upswing in art-related crying, and the increasing acceptance of such outward emotional expression overall, he also adds that “there remain some standards as far as art is concerned.” To sum up, he drops the all-important question: “Which artists’ work is it OK to be seen crying in front of, and which not?”

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Hairy Job Opportunities With Melgaard’s Studio

Hey kids! Are you underemployed and adventurous? Well then Bjarne Melgaard’s studio has a job just for you! The dapper, disturbing Norwegian — a professional rocker of crazy tracksuits and Instagrammer of torture-porn imagery who also moonlights as an artist — is seeking an unpaid intern to “create large hair based sculpture and paintings” in collaboration with hairstylist Bob Racine. And while this gig doesn’t offer any cash, Melgaard is dangling a rather attractive carrot before your uncompensated face: “Interns may receive a drawing by Bjarne Melgaard at the end of the project, provided the work was satisfactory” [emphasis added]. Who said the life of a recent art-school grad wasn’t glamorous?

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Portrait of the “It Girl” as a Young 19th-Century Woman

On November 19, Bonhams will auction off a miniature portrait of Harriet Rushout, daughter of the Baron Northwick of Northwick Park — AKA, one of “The Three Graces” when flanked by her famously fair sisters. A “celebrated society beauty,” according to the lot write-up, Rushot was apparently considered something of an “It Girl” in her time — and looking at her picture, it’s hard not to imagine she’d fit right in at any Manhattan VIP room this week. The artfully washed-out hair ornamented with a bandeau, the dark, Cara-Delvigne-ian brows — proof, just in case we ever needed more, that fashion is nothing if not cyclical. Really, though — even “Rushout” sounds like a club pseudonym. The painting is estimated to sell for £8,000 to £12,000 — but, as Ms. Rushot probably knew well, even a little buzz is priceless.

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The First Digital Picture Was of A Baby — Because, Of Course

Today in “well, we expected as much” news, the Atlantic reported that the original digital image was, in fact, of a baby. While working with one of the first programmable computers at the National Bureau of Standards in 1957, scientist Russell Kirsch used a drum scanner to separate a picture of his son Walden into black and white squares, then translated those values into binary. And thus, the pixelated picture was born. We have yet to confirm, however, that the following images were of a cat, a sunset, and a cool-looking food arrangement.

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See Snoop Dogg’s Painting Process in This Ad for Happy Socks

“For many years in my life, I always felt like painting was something I wanted to do, but I never got a chance to do it,” begins Snoop Dogg at the opening of a promotional video for his collaboration with Swedish company Happy Socks, due out on November 1. As part of their “Art of Inspiration” series, the company asked the hip hop legend to, in his words, “do my thing with canvas, paint, see what we come up with.” (Note: Yes, this absolutely means high-end socks with pot leaves on them.) Though the collaboration was teased shortly thereafter, today the full video has been released via Dazed in all its just-under-4-minute glory, providing invaluable insights into Snoop’s creative process.

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Art World Drinks: A Matisse Cut-Outs Cocktail

Henri Matisse once said, “You study, you learn, but you guard the original naivete. It has to be within you, as desire for drink is within the drunkard or love is within the lover.” On that note, and with the recent opening of MoMA’s Matisse Cut-Outs show, we thought it was the perfect time to whip up a drink in honor of Henri.

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Go to Cincinnati for FotoFocus, Stay for the Street Art

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.

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“Women Looking at Art” Tumblr Proves Women Look at Art

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?

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