Thursday, November 30, 2017

Contemporary Art: Inspired By Las Vegas @ James Cohan Gallery New York

(Drivebycuriosity) - Contemporary art is full of discoveries & surprises. At James Cohan Gallery (291 Grand Street, New York jamescohan) I spotted an interesting show with new work by Alison Elizabeth Taylor (through December 22, 2017). I display here my favorites from the exhibition, a very subjective selection as usual.

The press release explains: "Taylor assembles small parts cut from diverse materials to create a disjointed whole. Well-known for her use of the technique of marquetry, recently, Taylor has been reinventing the form by adding paint and photographic imagery such as desert floors, rusting neon signs and rotting wood" ( exhibitions).

The paintings are inspired by Taylor’s hometown of Las Vegas and the desert neighborhood. On top of this post you can see "Only Castles Burning..." (2017, Marquetry hybrid, 58 x 63 inches, 147.3 x 160 cm).

                                                               Casinos & Deserts

Above "Superbloom" (2017, Medium, 22 x 16 inches, 55.9 x 40.6 cm).

Above "The Cosmopolitan" (2016, Marquetry hybrid, 59 x 46 in. 149.9 x 116.8 cm) followed by "Forgive me, Mr. Eakins" (2017, Wood veneer, acrylic, shellac, 60 x 69 inches, 152.4 x 175.3 cm) & "Sam’s Town" (2016, Marquetry hybrid, 47 x 59 inches,119.4 x 149.9 cm).

Above "Solutionism: Plan B" (2017, Marquetry hybrid, 21 x 18 inches,53.3 x 45.7 cm) & "The Sum of It" (2017, Wood veneer, acrylic, shellac, 72 x 52 inches, 182.9 x 132.1 cm).


Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Contemporary Art: Quilted Beauties @ Taittinger New York

(Drivebycuriosity) -  Contemporary art is global.  Richard Taittinger Gallery, which is founded and owned by a heir of the French Champagne empire Taittinger (at 154 Ludlow St. taittinger), has now a show with work by an artist from South Africa: France Goodman. The show is called "Beneath Her" (through December 23, 2017). I display here my favorites from the show, a very subjective selection as usual.

The press release explains: "Goodman has chosen to work with an array of historical crafting techniques such as quilting, crochet and embroidery to explore these motifs. However, she has taken these traditionally homely and domestic pastimes and has, in keeping with historical and present feminist craft art practices, subverted them. Goodman’s quilts and crumpled sheets are made from richly colored acrylic nails, in primarily deep reds and purples, which mimic body tissue and look more like the flesh revealed when the skin is pulled back during plastic surgery, than the quaint quilts we cover ourselves in on a cold night" (exhibition).

Anyway, these quilted faces are very beautiful.

These images could be stills from some Hollywood movies.

Below some installation views:


Monday, November 27, 2017

Economics: Calling The Robots

(Drivebycuriosity) - The busy holiday season has started and Amazon and other E-commerce companies are processing a wave of orders. Unfortunately there were some strikes last Friday, usually called Black Friday. "Hundreds of Amazon workers in Italy and Germany were on strike during one of the busiest shopping days of the year", reported BBC ( The unions in both countries called the strikes over pay and working conditions and they chose Black Friday to cause a maximum of pain for the employer.

Unfortunately those strikes don´t just punish the online company, they also disappoint customers who expect a punctual delivery of their orders. Parents wouldn`t be happy, if they would be empty handed at Christmas because their presents would not arrive in time as a result of a strike. Spouse, friends and business partners also could be disappointed.

I reckon that those strikes are pushing Amazon and other retailers to accelerate their automation process. In 2012 year Amazon bought Kiva Systems, a manufacturer of robots that scuttle around warehouses filling orders. The online retailer uses  these robotic systems to reduce her costs and to deliver faster. According to media reports they already employ 45,000 robots across 20 fulfillment centers - about 50% more than in 2016 (businessinsider).

Robots don´t fight for higher wages, they don´t demand better working place conditions, they don´t sue about sexual harassment and they don´t strike. It looks like that the unions in Italy & Germany are calling for more robots.


Sunday, November 26, 2017

Photography: New York - Let Your Light Shine

(Drivebycuriosity) - The dark season has begun. In New York the sun sets around 5pm and a long night begins. But this is the time when daylight is getting replaced by artificial lights - a magical moment. I used my iPhone 7plus to capture some impressions from Manhattan´s dusk minutes and the following hours. Above an office building on Park Avenue which is illuminated like an art installation.

The Empire State Building gets somewhat mystical & Gothic.

And Manhattan´s  Midtown changes her makeup.

                                                               Magic Castle?

Is this the entrance to a magic castle? - Spotted somewhere in the East Village.

Even a sober technology shop gains some charm - the Apple shop in Grand Central Terminal.


Saturday, November 25, 2017

Contemporary Art: Between The Days @ Zürcher Gallery New York

(Drivebycuriosity) - New York`s Bleeker Street is famous for the cluster of pubs & rock venues. But you also can find an ambitious art gallery there: The Zürcher Gallery (33 Bleeker Street New York zurcher). Currently they exhibit works by Matt Bollinger: "Between The Days " (through 12.21.2017). You can see there his recent paintings and video animations (exhibition). I display here my favorites from this show, a very subjective selection as usual.

I like the atmosphere which reminds me of film noir scenes. On top of this post you can see "Before Work" (2017, flashe and acrylic on canvas, 27.5 x 36 inches). Flashe vinyl emulsion colors can dilute in water, but become indelible when dry and can be applied with brushes or sponges (artistcraftsman). Flashe is one of the first modern painting materials to give artists other means than oil painting to express themselves. Its optical characteristics allow the effects of old tempera paints and primitive painting grounds to be reproduced. The paints are matte, velvety and opaque.

Above: "First Light" followed by "Living Room Day" & "Living Room Night". Each 2017 flashe and acrylic on canvas, 27.5 x 36 inches.

"Impala" & "Credits Roll"

"The Descent"; "James' Weight Room" & "Carolyn's Office"


Friday, November 24, 2017

Contemporary Art: Cecily Brown @ Paula Cooper Gallery New York

(Drivebycuriosity) -  Does size matter? I does, at least for Cecily Brown. The artist uses huge canvases to create amazing murals. Paula Cooper Gallery in Manhattan`s Chelsea district (534 West 21st Street ) has an exhibition with new work by Cecily Brown (through December 2, 2017  paulacooper ). I display here my favorites from this show, a very subjective selection as usual.

The press release explains: "Brown draws from the compositional structure, historical motifs, and virtuosic brushwork of master painters across a diverse range of genres. Referencing these artists and other contemporary images in their entirety or by isolating specific elements, her paintings follow an iterative process of drawing and re-drawing, as an exercise in internalizing pictorial systems. Painted in a palette of bright hues to deep blacks, Brown’s works are centered on the human figure, built with layers of vibrating oil paint. Her loose gestures obscure and deconstruct a singular reading as bodies break down into restless, anfractuous and elusive activity" (press-release).

                                                A Play Of Shapes & Colors

Anyway, I like the powerful compositions, the play of shapes & colors.

I believe any ambitious contemporary art museum could be proud to own these murals. Who will buy them?