MAN hears that the NYT isn’t just looking into the Whitney and Robert Hurst, but that they’re looking at a number of other New York City cultural institutions as well… all of which renders the anonymous email that Gawker ran yesterday thoroughly dubious, a vendetta by someone that probably shouldn’t have been published. I mean, no one would have a vendetta against all NYC institutions, for chrissakes.
Tyler Green Modern Art Notes
Archive for September, 2004
Today, my first review for Bloomberg News runs over their terminal service and over their news service. If I can find a Google News link later today I’ll post it. For now, a blurb:
What if war memorials had a different goal? Instead of honoring war dead, what if war memorials reminded us how awful war is?
A show at the Whitney Museum of American Art, “Memorials of War,”‘ explores that possibility. The exhibit, put together by Whitney curator David Kiehl, is a small, thought-provoking presentation of alternative memorials. It’s on view through Nov. 28.
While none of the art here is the best work of any of the artists, “Memorials” is the kind of focused show that New York institutions, with their encyclopedic collections, should do more of. It does not fill a museum floor, nor does it beat visitors into submission with attitude-as-art spreads through gallery upon gallery. Sometimes a one-room show is more effective than a blockbuster. This is one of those occasions.
Please spend five minutes with Todd Gibson’s art blog survey. You can access it by clicking here.
Gawker has published the rumor that has had the Whitney all a-twitter for the last week or so. Presumably the story will run after O’Brien is done with the Fannie/Freddie Mac controversy. MAN hears that the focus of the story is Hurst, not Whitney director Adam Weinberg. (O’Brien is a writer for the business section — we can’t imagine him being too interested in a where-the-Whitney-is-now piece. And he’s written about Hurst before.)
While we’re discussing the NYT, now would be a good time to point out that the NYT’s cultural coverage revamp, starring Gawker Media mascot Choire Sicha, goes live on Oct. 3.
The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette has been doing a week-long series on the confluence of art and politics. (‘Confluence,’ Pittsburgh, get it?) Today the paper takes a look at political themes in the visual arts world (thanks AJ) and concludes that galleries are active in the fundraising game, institutions are mostly silent and artists are… well, artists made protest art for the GOP convention.
My take: A couple of institutions are very engaged in the current socio-political dialogue and I’ve written about this for Bloomberg News. (Look for at least a blurb on Friday.) Galleries are active fundraisers and a few artists have been donors. But as far as art… we’re in two wars right now and you’d barely know it from strolling through galleries in Chelsea, DC or Los Angeles.
One exception: Sam Durant’s timely show at Blum & Poe in LA. Unfortunately, unless you’re in LA you can’t see any of the show because B&P has one of the art world’s most useless websites.
The P-G also missed the best website by an artist-activist: Joy Garnett’s NEWSgrist.
Finally, this P-G paragraph is so stupid it deserves special attention:
The Andy Warhol Museum, more fleet of foot than most institutions of its size and caliber, and sharing the gadfly cultural observer persona of its namesake, has co-organized an exhibition of the notorious Iraqi prison photographs from Abu Ghraib. While one may assume a partisan intent, the museum’s publicity suggests a broader context within which to consider the images.
How is an exhibition of photos of horrid American human rights violations ‘partisan?’ Democrats are against human rights abuses and Republicans aren’t? Showing troubling photographs is a Democratic thing or embarasses Republicans? Ridiculous. Those photographs are an embarassment to the nation, not to one party.
MAN has more scoop on the potential Tate or MoMA/Harvey Shipley Miller drawings deal. According to the NYT, HSM insured the collection for $75M. Todd Gibson raised some questions about how it was nearly impossible for HSM to spend that much on the collection… MAN has learned that the purchase prise was in the $10-15M range.
(Speaking of Todd Gibson, he’s doing an art blog survey (such a consultant!). Help him out by clicking here.)
If Blake Gopnik takes two full days to do the Chelsea strip mall (password, etc.) — he must either spend a lot more time in bad shows than I do or he needs a speedwalking course. Heck, it must take him a week to do LA. (Oh, wait, silly me! East Coast, ‘national’ critics gallery-crawling in LA? Hah!! Michael Kimmelman probably thinks that Bergamot Station is a casino in Vegas.)
In fairness to Gopnik, I know that when he’s in LA he gallery crawls. I just kid because I care. (Well, that and because I had an opportunity for a dig at Kimmelman.) That doesn’t explain why I’m randomly ranting — that’s because I barely know what state I’m in at this point.
I will say this: The LA gallery scene is good, not great, right now. Geographically speaking, Culver City is interesting, Chinatown is horrid, Wilshire is better on paper than it is on walls and only Regen makes WeHo worth the drive up Robertson. (Specifics later this week.)
I wasn’t a big fan of my last Chelsea crawl — and that I thought only one of the shows Gopnik named was worth a moment’s consideration. In fact, when I was in Chelsea two weeks ago I thought that it was the worst September crawl I’ve ever done. So if LA is average right now and Chelsea is lousy, where does that leave?
Uh, DC. More later this week….
Greetings from LA. So I’m in LA. I go to Bergamot Station yesterday afternoon. I see what looks like an interesting show at Richard Heller. But they’re closed. At four in the afternoon. This drives me nuts.
If you’ve emailed me, I’m on the road, so I’m behind. I’ll try to get caught up tonight.
Meanwhile, enjoy what Ionarts wrote about Peter Schjeldahl’s Wednesday chat in DC.
In a sourcegreaser about the collectin’ Podestas, Washington Post writer Jessica Dawson either goofed or has a big scoop:
With more than half their trove currently in storage, Tony and Heather, like notable collectors Eli and Edythe Broad in Los Angeles and Don and Mera Rubell in Miami, are considering buying a public space to show their works.
The Broads are considering buying a public space to show their works? That’d be news to me. There is the Broad Art Foundation in Santa Monica (which is being re-installed as we speak), but that’s not exactly a space that’s open to the public. I’m in LA… my ears are open…