James Franco, Is He Any Good?

by Liza Eliano on June 23, 2010 · 14 comments Newswire


James Franco at Clocktower Gallery, via: Amy Sussman for the Wall Street Journal

James Franco is out to convince us he's not just an actor who may or may not be stoned all the time —as if enrolling in five of the top colleges on the east coast weren't enough. In his first solo exhibition, “The Dangerous Book Four Boys” opening today at Clocktower Gallery, Franco explores the media aimed at young boys and sexual confusion during adolescence. Erica Orden of the Wall Street Journal writes of the show:

Short films focus on demolition, showing burning or bullet-riddled structures like a plastic toy home or a large wooden rocket (the exhibition contains originals or replicas of these). Another work explores a romantic encounter between “Star Trek” characters Spock and James T. Kirk.

Will it be any good? According to Alanna Heiss, founder and former director of PS1 and the show’s curator, chances are yes. “I think he’s going to be a visionary artist for his generation,” she recently told the Wall Street Journal. We’re thinking Magda Sawon of Postmasters Gallery in Chelsea thinks differently though: “If someone is in desperate need of a crossover film/art/fashion stars” she chirps over twitter, “kindly google Tilda Swinton and delete your Franco”

  • http://intensedebate.com/profiles/zacharycohen Zachary Adam Cohen

    I think he's acting in good faith, just in the wrong church

  • http://intensedebate.com/profiles/zacharycohen Zachary Adam Cohen

    I think he's acting in good faith, just in the wrong church

  • samo4prez

    TIlda Swinton…is an amazing work of photographic art on her own…

  • samo4prez

    TIlda Swinton…is an amazing work of photographic art on her own…

  • samo4prez

    TIlda Swinton…is an amazing work of photographic art on her own…

  • Carol Cheh

    Franco's art escapades are causing a bit of a stir in LA, check out my post about this at http://anotherrighteoustransfer.wordpress.com/201….

  • Carol Cheh

    Franco's art escapades are causing a bit of a stir in LA, check out my post about this at http://anotherrighteoustransfer.wordpress.com/201….

  • hhalle

    Here's what I think: Franco is more or less a typically "handsome" movie star type whose level of talent and commitment aren't really up to what you'd need to be say, a Tom Cruise of Brad Pitt or George Clooney. So he's using the art world as a way of making his efforts seem deeper and complex than they really are. And of course the art world, more desperate than ever for mainstream approbation now that it's totally bereft of ideas, is playing along. But even in terms of taking his career in a supposedly meta direction, he's merely reprising Andy Kaufman—though in a admittedly better-looking package.

  • hhalle

    Here's what I think: Franco is more or less a typically "handsome" movie star type whose level of talent and commitment aren't really up to what you'd need to be say, a Tom Cruise of Brad Pitt or George Clooney. So he's using the art world as a way of making his efforts seem deeper and complex than they really are. And of course the art world, more desperate than ever for mainstream approbation now that it's totally bereft of ideas, is playing along. But even in terms of taking his career in a supposedly meta direction, he's merely reprising Andy Kaufman—though in a admittedly better-looking package.

  • JpLaRocket

    Turns out Franco got into the Digital + Media department at the Rhode Island School of Design.

  • JpLaRocket

    Turns out Franco got into the Digital + Media department at the Rhode Island School of Design.

  • haywardg

    Is this final proof that in the art world, no one actually cares about the work but rather the celebrity, the personality image of the "artist", the gossip story?

  • haywardg

    Is this final proof that in the art world, no one actually cares about the work but rather the celebrity, the personality image of the "artist", the gossip story?

  • haywardg

    Is this final proof that in the art world, no one actually cares about the work but rather the celebrity, the personality image of the "artist", the gossip story?

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