Sarah Anne Ward’s Dessert Art Is Definitely Good Enough To Eat (PHOTOS)

Sarah Anne Ward’s Dessert Art Is Definitely Good Enough To Eat (PHOTOS).

I thought that this collaboration between photographer Sarah Anne Ward and food stylist Heather Meldrom and Michelle Gatton looked good enough to eat share. They remade iconic works of modern art from food items, took pictures with a little editing had some cool  results. It’s just silly, but it is a Monday and  I figured we could all use some humor!

Art as Solace: Pinaree Sanpitak

I love installation art, and I really with I could see Pinaree Sanpitak’s conceptual tribute to the Thailand peoples who suffered during that tragic 2011 Monsoon. Snapitak’s art may take after Eva Hesse in style, but her completed hammocks are distinguished from her predecessor by its religious (Theravada Buddhism common in Thialand) over tones and Thai aesthetics. She also has a singular dipping/drapping curve shape to her art, that embodies all of the warmth, grace and security of a mother’s breast while recalling the motions of the rising, consuming waters of a typhoon. If you have the opportunity to see this powerful exhibit you really would be remiss to not go.

Unframed The LACMA Blog

In her installation Hanging by a Thread, Pinaree Sanpitak, a Thai conceptual artist, honors a national tragedy (the 2011 Monsoon floods). The work uses a flowers-patterned fabric, a textile very common in Thailand, which Pinaree stated “ . . . proved soothing, and brought back a sense of nostalgia . . . the ordinary. The local.”

On the fourth floor of the Ahmanson Building, 18 hammocks hang in a dark gallery. They look like rare exotic vegetation crafted from the printed cotton textile, the paa-lai. It’s easy to imagine them as forms of the monsoon: terrifying, consuming waters transforming the Chao Phraya River that snakes through Bangkok like some mythic creature. But of course, Pinaree’s art allows all manner of imagery to be contained, and is sometimes so simple as to reveal and mystify all at once.

The hammocks yield to the curvature of the breast, a constant…

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VAN GOGH is a POST-Impressionism painter, NOT an Expressionism Painter

Van Gogh self portrait in the POST-IMPRESSIONIST style

So, dear readers, I am getting ready for an episode of Face Off I have been excited to watch, right? The theme is art movements so I am thinking that I will love this, right? Well I am half way through the episode and I am already angered and wound up in a tizzy.

First, one girl thinks Constructivism is a movement based on construction. And another contestant is creating a design for Constructivism using a construction worker!

But what really ticks me off is that no one is correcting the idiot who keeps saying that he chose the Expressionism theme because Van Gogh is his idol or something.

hello— WHAT?

Van Gogh is POST-Impressionism, NOT Expressionism. And yes there is a difference.

Expressionist paintings are characterized by distortion and exaggeration in order to create an emotional effect. The paintings are full of vivid imagery and emotion and are often described as showing a touch of the dark side of human nature. Other characteristics of the expressionist style are intense color, disjointed spaces, and agitated brushstrokes that portray subjective reality rather than realism. Artists who paint in this style might incorporate fantasy and violence in their subject matter in order to show the extremes of emotion, often they express their own thoughts and opinions.

The Expressionist movement existed in both Germany and France from 1905 to 1925. Some of the artists closely associated with the movement are Marc Chagall (1887-1985), Wassily Kandinsky (1866-1944), Paul Klee (1879-1940), August Macke (1887-1914), Franz Marc (1880-1916), Henri Matisse (1869-1964), and Edvard Munch (1863-1944). NOT Van Gogh.

Impressionism is generally considered to be a spontaneous method of painting in which an artist attempts to capture the impression of light in a scene. The Impressionists broke from the traditional painting methods of their day by applying paint in small touches of pure color, rather than mix the paint before applying it, and using broad strokes and sometimes a palette knife instead of a brush. This method allowed the artists to emphasize the impression of their subject matter rather than paint the object in a realistic manner, enabling the artist to paint an image in the way that someone might see it if they only caught a quick glimpse of the subject. Most impressionist paintings are outdoor scenes painted in vibrant colors without an emphasis on detail and emotion.

The Impressionist movement, which originated in France, lasted from 1867 to 1886. Among the artists most closely associated with the movement are Mary Cassatt (1844-1926), Edgar Degas (1834-1917), Claude Monet (1840-1926), Camille Pissaro (1830-1903), Pierre-Auguste Renoir (1841-1919), and Alfred Sisley (1839-1899). NOT Van Gogh.

Post-Impressionism came a little later ( the term was invented by Roger Fry in 1910) and was started by artists responding to Impressionism by exploring pointillism methods, because they felt all of the potential of Impressionism was exhausted. Post-Impressionists pushed the ideas of the Impressionists into new directions, but Post-Impressionists were an eclectic bunch of individuals, so there were no broad, unifying characteristics. Each artist took an aspect of Impressionism and exaggerated it. Artists of Post-Impressionsim include Paul Cézanne, Paul Gauguin, George Seurat, André Derain, Maurice de Vlaminck and Othon Friesz, plus the sculptor Aristide Maillol and VINCENT VAN GOGH!

So now hopefully you see that there is a difference between these three art movements.

Art World Lets Us Down Once Again By Including Only ONE Woman In Major Exhibition

Art World Lets Us Down Once Again By Including Only ONE Woman In Major Exhibition.

In as “progressive” and gender neutral a world that we live in today how, I ask, HOW can the Gagosian really and truly have only selected one woman artist out of 35? The exhibit is titled “The Show Is Over” and all I have to say is that clearly the need for a new contemporary feminism is not. Kim Gordon is the only woman represented in the upcoming abstract art show in London. I can think of many female abstract artists  that could be included— why not Agnes Martin? Lisa Corinne Davis? Frieda Kahlo? or present day working artist Guadulesa Rivera?  

Come on, should not those in the art world be more progressive than THIS!

UPDATE: So I just realized that all of these artists are also white. Come on man, come on! *smh*

Jeffery Gibson and the Shoshana Wayne Gallery

Contemporary artist Jeffrey Gibson effortlessly blends the past and the present to create unique, hybrid objects that wittily pair two disparate influences: traditional then and present now.  Moving beyond a habit of pastiche, Gibson makes art that appears more to be rooted in contemporary remix culture.  His style incorporates traditional Native American pattern and color in with a modern inclusiveness. THe result is very refreshing, vibrant, and respectful to Native American peoples, remembering them as they were while concurrently reminding us that they are still here.  Interestingly, the gallery statement of his latest exhibit at Shoshana Wayne Gallery notes:

“This mash-up of visual and cultural references comes from the artist’s Choctaw and Cherokee heritage, moving frequently during his childhood—to Germany, Korea and the East Coast of the U.S. , and his early exposure to rave and club cultures of the 1980s and 1990s. Gibson cites that the sense of inclusiveness and acceptance, the celebratory melding of subcultures and an idealistic promise of unity all galvanized by the DJ’s power to literally move an audience to dance to his beat, continues to serve as a primary inspiration for his inter-disciplinary practice.”

Often and sadly, Native American works are marginalized in Western art history cannon because of the singularity of thestyle. The bright colors and buzzy patterns have been called abrasive, tackless, and worse “crafty.” Native American beading and weaving are highly skilled techniques that deserve as much or more appreciation in art history discourse as any Western art medium.  The gallery statement continues about the relationship between Native American and Western art: “The paintings are done on elk rawhide stretched over wood panels. Gibson arrived at this format after years of looking at painting techniques found in various non-Western art histories, of paintings on shields, drums and parfleche containers (animal hides wrapped around varying goods). The paintings also read within a modern and contemporary art context whereas artists from the 1950s and 1960s were looking towards traditions such as Native American and Oceanic art to create ideals of spirituality, animism and purity.  One can infer artistic influences from Frank Stella, Ellsworth Kelly, and Donald Judd.”

Using his artist statement, Gibson cleverly appropriates the past and inserts himself and his heritage into art history by mixing and remixing, trully giving history a new look with his artist’s eye.


Now You’re in New York!: “In the AIr” by T.J. Wilcox

“In the Air” T. J. Wilcox

“In the Air” by conceptual film artist T.J. Wilcox, is a stunning panoramic film instillation at the Whitney that asks the viewer to consider the complex, entertaining relationship between New York and film. His new work makes you realize anew how perfect a match New York and film are for the other. I mean the pedestal upon which we have placed the shining city of New York (where dreams are made from) is largely constructed from famous movie moments. In a way, this piece is part narrative of New York, part exploration of the city’s reputation as cultivated by film, and part personal biography of Wilcox’s career in New York.

The following quote from Roberta Smith describes Wilcox’s set up well:

“This piece centers on an in-the-round bird’s-eye view of Lower Manhattan that was shot from the artist’s studio, the 18th-floor penthouse of a building on Union Square, and compresses the passing of one day into 30 minutes. Like the old-style panorama, it appears on a circular screen, one that is about 7 feet high and 35 feet in diameter. Hanging about four and a half feet above the floor, it’s like a giant lampshade.”—, Art Practical

Although Wilcox’s is best known for shorter projections,— films only a few minutes long (and often looped) that are pieced together from all kinds of existing footage— with “In the Air” he goes BIG, and the effect is astounding. This project began from his reaction to the 360-degree view from his own studio, he descrbes the moment as initial paralysis followed by compete awe of the city’s ageless majesty. Consistent with his preference for lower-tech gear, he downgraded his equipment from five complicated cameras to the same number of relatively small, rugged, inexpensive GoPros. He also found he improved resolution by switching from filming to shooting stills. And he prayed for sun skies, but dotted with clouds so the stills would have some interest.

And after much trial and error and some uncooperative weather, in July Wilcox was finally able to shoot about 15 hours’ worth of a single day in the life of New York City. He ended up with 60,000 stills, shot at a rate of one per second. These were individually processed, and then animated and sped up using a computer program that seamlessly stitched the views together, eliminating distortions and evening light levels.

The final result is pure majesty and clarity. The wraparound vista portrays a timeless living record of New York that is ethereal and yet absolutely personal. By omitting the details of street traffic and storefronts, the ageless and eternal grandeur of the city can be fully appreciated. The sights include the Con Edison clock tower, Zeckendorf Towers, Freedom Tower and the West Side, with glimpses of the Hudson and New Jersey. The sun pushes shadows from many sets of clouds in different shades and shapes across the masses of architecture; airplanes arrive and depart; the lights of the city come on and then dim, as the sun returns.

But that is not all. Superimposed on the panorama are six short cameo-films that pull us from one place or era, one event or personality to another, across varying film methods, between color and black and white. The cameos appear one at a time on different parts of the screen, each with its own title, forming a carefully linked loop of narratives. Some draw on Wilcox’s life, like “On the Horizon” which remembers the prominent fashion illustrator Antonio Lopez by stringing together images of his work, film footage, stills of him and also of break dancers performing in his studio. The Con Edison tower in the backgrounds of some images of the break dancers are within sight of Mr. Lopez’s former studio just across the square.

My own reaction to this piece is to consider how it portrays the singularity of New York, its diversity of people, and cultural resources, and yet concurrently represents a non-discrimatory haven for all. Even though the city is a shining beacon for lofty ambitions, it is still a place for all, and it’s spectacular reputation never imposes an ostentatious barrier to anyone seeking to make it their home.

To read more about the exhibit and see a picture— sorry! I could not find any really good quality ones, maybe I will search again later after its been up for awhile— then follow this link to Art Practical:


Sampling Blaxploitation: Hip-Hop, The ‘Browns’, and Tarantino

belated, baby

The blaxploitation films of the 1970s comprise a controversial subgenre of racial stereotypes, uniquely rich and soulful soundtracks, and newfound black power. These films and the music that accompanied them faced the “problems and pleasures of contemporary black life”, often with lead characters that offered “fantasies of individual empowerment through violence, crime, and the performance of individual style”, as put by Amanda Howell.

While blaxploitation filmmakers’ formulaic approach to moviemaking caused the genre to fizzle out after several years, the 1990s saw a rebirth in its popularity. As hip-hop evolved, producers and emcees suddenly found comfort in a strong thematic tie to these 70s films, which they expressed in a number of ways. Interestingly, their approach to referencing blaxploitation history can be compared to director Quentin Tarantino’s own appropriation of blaxploitation themes in his creation of 1997’s Jackie Brown.

Blaxploitation as Hip-Hop

An immediate connection between the growing popularity…

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Georgia O’Keeffe’s Cityscapes

City Night


Let’s be real. When most of us think Georgia O’Keeffe, what immediately comes to mind are her iconic flower close-ups and the assumption that they refer to female anatomy— a suggestion popularized by Steglitz and still widely believed despite her life long denial such associations. But maybe you also consider her paintings of the American Southwest, the desert landscapes and animal skulls that characterized her later career. Less widely known, however, is a period from 1925 to 1930 in which O’Keeffe turned to New York City and its skyscrapers for inspiration—in my mind one of the most shocking breaks with expectation of all time.

In 1925 O’Keeffe felt pigeonholed by her peers, clients and critics. She was stuck in the role of producing feminist art and all people would say about her work was that it alluded to a woman’s physical and sexual nature. This is mainly because of the way Stieglitz managed her career, marketing her work for her as a scandalous representation of vaginas and female sexuality. Feeling stuck and frustrated by reviews and limitations to “woman art,” she chose to take on an entirely new subject stating that she wanted to be,”so magnificently vulgar that all the people who have liked what I have been doing would stop speaking to me.” And so, when she chose to paint the sky scrapers of New York and debuted these paintings she was met with harsh criticism for her work and of course disapproval from Steglitz. It was not for a women to paint architecture, this was a masculine subject better suited to a man’s interpretation— after all what to women know about architecture? *rolls eyes*

My favorite of her cityscapes series is City Night from a 1926. It is just so fantastically simple, so abstract that it is almost purely shape and the dimensions defined more by the push and pull of color than structure. This painting, to me, seems to illustrate the enormity, the all encasing, overwhelming  and sometimes oppressive feelings large cities can impose. But other paintings feature buildings with illuminated windows that shine through the dark sky brighter than the stars. These seem peaceful to me, comforting like a nightlight that will never fail. All of the paintings are at night or late dusk rendered in luscious, deep blues and rich blacks with points of light that lead you through a composition of voluminous shapes.

Radiator Building

O’Keeffe herself is elusive about what the apintings mean to her. But the choice she made to paint them was surely a decision to step outside of the restricitions imposed on her by society and even if she was met with no support I do beieve that in the end the paintings are a success and the images evoke powerful responses from the viewers, regardless of how they assume O’Keeffe should paint.

Who I am looking at today: Manjari Sharma

Follow the link to look at some amazing photograph recreations of old school, like for real old school from Hindu mythology, of some of India’s most poplar images of Hindu gods and legends. The photographer is Manjari Sharma and his interview with the Huffington post is a really great read, especially for photographers.

A Fun Test For You All

Follow the link to take this simple to use color test. There are four rows of disorganized color swatches, you have arrange them square by square into order by hue. The two swatches on the opposite ends of each row are fixed so use them as starting guides. You want score a zero; that would be perfect.

I took the test scored a zero! It is really fun, so take the test and post your score in the comment below. You can screen shot your results and post them too.