If you happen to follow Mykki Blanco on Twitter or Instagram, then you know that the rapper-cum-performance artist has been on tour for the better part of two years now, breezing through an impressive list of countries in Europe and Southeast Asia — from a particularly controversial stop in Portugal to a gig in Hanoi’s sole hipster bar. And given her* change of handle on both social media sites, you’re probably also aware of “Gay Dog Food,” the Kathleen Hanna–featuring alter ego album set to drop on October 28, which represents, according to Blanco, “where I hope to go creatively and commercially” — i.e., harder, grimier, genre-bending “creative punk.” What you may not yet know, however, is that Blanco will be back in New York City at long last on October 30 to perform as part of fashion house Hood by Air’s first-ever non-runway presentation, hosted by MoMA’s PopRally.
In the Air – Art+Auction's Gossip Column
Today the Studio Museum in Harlem announced that it will award its 2014 Joyce Alexander Wein Artist Prize to conceptual artist Samuel Levi Jones. The $50,000 prize is given annually to “an African-American artist who demonstrates great innovation, promise and creativity,” according to press materials. The prize will be given to Jones at the museum’s gala tonight.
A clear highlight of the Prospect 3 programming on view at the Contemporary Arts Center: the intensely strange, beautifully rendered oil-on-panel works of Douglas Bourgeois, who shows with New Orleans’ Arthur Roger Gallery. They combine the density of medieval painting with the cheeky camp of John Waters, with special care lavished on the smallest details: tree bark, tattoos, and the minutiae of consumer packaging.
Without some explanation, the myriad objects on view created by artist duo Arctic Perspective Initiative might seem like props from a science fiction movie. However, the complicated field tools — which include an early drone used to create high procedure maps; a waterproof device built for recording sound; a traditional Qammutik sled dwelling nicknamed Kallitaq (which means “Thunder and Lightning” in Inuktitut); and a document called the “Phoenix Declaration” — are all real pieces of equipment that Matthew Biederman and Marko Peljhan use for their projects in the Arctic. Defining API as a transnational art, science, and culture working group, Biederman and Peljhan have embarked on several projects over the past six years in collaboration with Arctic Indigenous populations. We sat down with the pair to discuss the Arctic Treaty, caribou recipes, and the explorer/exploiter paradigm.
At the McKenna Museum of African-American Art, Carrie Mae Weems’s Prospect 3 show includes 2012’s “Lincoln, Lonnie and Me – A Story in 5 Parts.” Projected holograms against a backdrop of lush theater curtains enact a beguiling, fractured narrative that encompasses the JFK assassination and Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation; a woman hisses and snarls, letting us know that “Revenge is a motherfucker.” Just when things start to fall into place, Neil Diamond’s “Girl You’ll Be A Woman Soon” kicks in, accompanied by dancers in bunny outfits.
The press opening for Prospect 3 kicked off this morning at the Ashé Cultural Arts Center, which has this installation by Kerry James Marshall in the street-facing windows. Entitled “The Manifold Pleasures, and such…,” it’s composed of gold-mirrored Plexiglass tables adorned with gift boxes, greeting cards, and plastic bags from Party City stuffed with shiny bows and ribbons. An intriguing, suitably enigmatic starting point for this Franklin Sirmans–curated show, which brings 58 artists to 18 locations across New Orleans, and is inspired by Walker Percy’s 1961 novel “The Moviegoer.” The exhibition opens to the public on Saturday.
In case you hadn’t heard, musician Neil Young is fond of cars — from his 2009 album “Fork in the Road,” inspired by his retooled Lincoln Continental (or, “Lincvolt”), to his memoir “Special Deluxe: A Memoir of Life & Cars,” the title of which is pretty self-explanatory. Apparently, though, neither music nor the written word was quite sufficient to express the full extent of his affection, so Young took up a paintbrush. Now, Young’s watercolor automobiles set to debut at LA’s Robert Berman Gallery on November 3, marking his first-ever West Coast art show.
British artist Suzanne Treister’s contribution to the biennial includes two massive (and massively intricate) marker-on-wall drawings as well as a suite of 78 tarot card drawings — all made with the purpose of detailing the history of cybernetics and how Martin Heidegger, Margaret Mead, Ada Lovelace, drones, Ken Kesey, and many other people and things are part of the history of technology. We sat down with Treister at Tuesday’s press preview and asked for a bit of explanation.
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.