The Daily Pic: Designer Adi Zaffran Weisler mixes scrap wood and tidy plastics.
This “RAWtation" table was conceived by the Israeli designer Adi Zaffran Weisler, during his studies at the venerable Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design in Jerusalem. By inserting natural detritus into the jig for the table’s rotationally-molded plastic top, Weisler managed to inject some happenstance into an industrial process that’s usually all about preplanning and perfect control – like a bit of Jackson Pollock added to the procedures of a Josef Albers. (The “Fish" designs by Gaetano Pesce got there first, I know, but Weisler makes more outlandish messes.)
Fears the loss of funds.
New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg has been what some call a “mayor of the arts.” Contributing $200 million of his own fortune, and a significant amount of political capital, Bloomberg has been a prominent supporter of the arts in the nation's largest city. From staging outdoor exhibitions to helping museums complete ambitious renovations, since the beginning of his tenure the mayor has constantly moved the art community forward. Now, as he prepares to leave office in six months, many fear that his replacement will not be as benevolent, or as deep-pocketed.
Timed with the opening of Fendi’s new Parisian boutique, the house teams up with Lagerfeld on an exhibit that pays homage to Rome's fountains.
The Eternal City is in need of a face-life, and its calling on old friend Fendi for help. The luxury goods company, which was born in Rome in 1925, is sponsoring the restoration of the Trevi Fountain in a philanthropic endeavor appropriately named “Fendi for Fountains.”
To further celebrate both FENDI’s legacy and its hometown appreciation for Rome, the design house commissioned Karl Lagerfeld to shoot images of the city’s renowned fountains to be presented in an exhibition in Paris near Pont Alexandre III. The project, named The Glory of the Water, is timed with the opening of the brand's new Avenue Montaigne boutique in Paris and will be shown in recreations of the cupolas unique to Rome’s skyline along the Seine from July 4th through July 14th. With music of Vivaldi and sounds of streaming water in the background, the exhibit plays homage to some of Rome’s most iconic sites. The exhibition will also include the restoration of the 1977 short film Histoire d’Eau by Jacques de Bascher.
In a release issued to press, Karl Lagerfeld said, “Rome has a very unique atmosphere. In my life, I have already been to Rome over 740 times, I feel part of it ... Rome is eternal, therefore, there is no better place: Rome has changed and has not changed.”
The Daily Pic: Jonathas de Andrade demonstrates the path from single to double bed.
In a group show called "Better Homes", at the Sculpture Center in New York, the Brazilian artist Jonathas de Andrade provides instructional photos for rejigging two single beds as one double one. His 2010 piece, called "2 em 1" ("Two in One") seems like a good distillation of many of the exhibition's larger themes: Domesticity and its material goods; coupling and the social structures that surround it; the very different access that developed and developing nations have to the disposable trappings of modern middle-class life.
Sure, you can by posters and other cheap wall-hanging on Amazon. But the huge e-tailer is preparing to offer expensive art for sale online.
The artist is unveiling ‘We Think Alone,’ a 20-week project that blasts out private emails from Lena Dunham, Kirsten Dunst, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, and more to the public. She talks to Isabel Wilkinson.
Miranda July is in your inbox. Literally. The filmmaker/writer/director/artist has launched a new project, We Think Alone, which will bring emails from her friends, many of them well known, into your inbox.
(L-R) Lena Dunham, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, and Kirsten Dunst. (RJ Shaughnessy)
The project, which rolls out over 20 weeks, will send subscribers an email blast every Monday morning. In it will be an assortment of emails curated from her friends on a range of subjects—from “angry emails” to “emails to your mom.”
The first batch of emails came on Monday—and all were about money, presented without context. The first was an email from Kirsten Dunst to someone named “H” (all email addresses and recipients’ names have been redacted): “My friend Jessica is buying my car for 7,000 I gave her your info for payments. She’s going to pay 2,000 up front and then pay the rest as fast as she can. Don’t know the paper work involved, but Warren mentioned he had something. Thanks, Kirsten.” The next is an email from Rodarte designers Kate and Laura Mulleavy: “can we get our money back on the wrong pins?” There’s also an email from photographer Catherine Opie about an upcoming project, and an email from Lena Dunham to her assistant, “LD Assistant,” about a $24,000 couch, about which she writes simply: “decided it’s just too expensive.” Reacting to the project, Dunham tweeted Monday: “I have never felt more raw than sharing an email about my finances.”
The Daily Pic: At the Met, an ancient Greek bronze gives a golden view of boxing.
The image at left shows a lovely Hellenistic Greek bronze, made around 300 B.C. and now on loan to the Metropolitan Museum from the Museo Nazionale Romano in Rome. If this is late, “decadent" Greek art, I’ll take more of it, any day. It’s an extraordinarily powerful thing, and gives a really touching view of an aging but still powerful boxer. The wall texts claim that Greek aristos themselves used to box, as a sign of martial prowess, and I love the idea that this represents an elite figure rather than a “mere" athlete. It also seems that this statue, which we would classify as a lesser “genre" subject, was so highly valued in ancient Rome that it was deliberately buried to protect if from marauding hordes. One thing the Met’s texts don’t broach: That it may be that ancient bronzes were originally presented highly polished, like brass (or gold), rather than with the dark patina we’re used to seeing on them. That’s what the manipulated image at right presents, and it seems to make sense to me, as a different image of the pomp of antiquity – of a piece with the fully painted marbles that we know were also the norm.
The Daily Beast: In the 1920s, Chaim Soutine riffed on Rembrandt's butchery.
Just back from a visit to the fantastic Albright-Knox museum in Buffalo, one of the first places where I acquired an intimate knowledge of modern art. On my first visits, I was still mired deep in Renaissance and Old Master art, so this side of beef, painted by Chaim Soutine in about 1925, immediately struck a chord. Although I can’t remember at the time if I recognized its source in Rembrandt – because I kept linking it to the still earlier butcher-shop images of Bartolomeo Passarotti, and thinking about the strange survival of certain motifs across the centuries, even if they are absolute unica the first time they come along.
Citing a rise in metal costs.
After 42 years the Metropolitan Museum of Art has decided to drop the use of its metal admissions buttons. The multicolored buttons, which started simply as tickets of entry, had become miniature icons. The museum said in a statement that the growing cost of metal made the continued use of the button unreasonable. While keeping the museum open for business is certain to be top priority for visitors, nostalgia will be unavoidable for those who came to love, and collect, the multicolored buttons.
The Daily Pic: In his furniture, Mathieu Mercier sees aesthetics in function.
This bench, by French artist Mathieu Mercier, is one of my favorite recent finds, which I've spotted (and sat on) several times at art fairs in the booth of Galerie Mehdi Chouakri from Berlin. Mercier just provides the two metal brackets, and it's up to their buyer to supply the rolls of carpet for seat and back. (The piece has also been shown with sewer pipe and old logs replacing the carpet). As the gallery puts it, Mercier's works "imply that function is part of an aesthetical proposition." And then there's the green angle: I'm convinced that the more unsellably hideous the carpet, the better it would look on Mercier's bench, providing an endless demand for textile designers' mistakes.
The Daily Pic: In 1982, Agnes Denes cultivated wheat in Battery Park.
From the very interesting "Expo 1" show at PS1 comes this image of Agnes Denes's 1982 project called "Wheatfield – A Confrontation: Battery Park Landfill, Downtown Manhattan". The title says it all: A wheatfield planted and then harvested on remediated landfill at Battery Park in far lower Manhattan, as it awaited development. The project is smart and powerful and beautiful on so many levels – and of course having the Twin Towers in the background gives it added potency, now. None of Denes's issues, in art or politics or economics or ecology, are any less worth addressing today than 30 years ago.
The Daily Pic: Tobias Rehberger transplants a Frankfurt watering hole to New York.
German artist Tobias Rehberger has a favorite watering hole in Frankfurt called the Bar Oppenheimer. For the Frieze Art Fair, he and gallery Pilar Corrias made a duplicate of it in Hôtel Americano in Chelsea that will be operating through July 14. It is what Duchamp would have called an “assisted readymade,” with the assist here being that Rehberger redid all the bar’s surfaces with a bizarre camouflage pattern derived from the “dazzle ships” of World War I. You feel drunk before even consuming one of Rehberger’s signature vodka and limes. (He better not turn to mixology ...) All of this is pretty standard art-world stuff and rather too invested in the cliché of the louche, scene-y artist. What particularly struck me, however, was that Rehberger has opened another duplicate of the same original bar on the far side of Frankfurt, but insists that that facsimile is just a bar and not a work of art. Keeping this distinction between art and nonart, even if it’s only made by fiat, shows a real understanding of how readymades have to work.
Daily Pic: Wim Delvoye rethinks a Christian icon.
Only a few more days to catch “Dual Möbius Quad Corpus”, one of the best pieces ever by Belgian artist Wim Delvoye, who is now enjoying a solo show at Sperone Westwater gallery in New York. This truly bizarre object, worthy of the furthest bywaters of Catholic eccentricity, consists of four bronze Christs crucified on a single cross that’s been turned in on itself – the only way to accomplish this perverse four-in-one task, according to Delvoye. What matters most about the piece is that it doesn’t read as pure and arbitrary surrealism. The object sets itself a goal, of sorts, and then achieves it in an orderly way. Looking at it, you are forever wanting to undistort its four life-size figures and “resurrect” them to a normal state, like the skull in Holbein’s “Ambassadors”. I have almost never seen modern takes on Christian symbols that genuinely work, seeming to move the tradition forward without leaving its roots behind. By which I guess I mean that I can imagine some Spanish penitent, circa 1600, getting something from Delvoye’s piece.