Joel as ‘Jessie.’ (Image from Secrets of the Living Dolls)
AFC’s offices are a buzz this morning, as art news just keeps pouring in!
Jerry Saltz has written a letter to MoMA’s Trustees imploring them not to proceed with Diller Scofidio + Renfro’s design, which he believes won’t be conducive to viewing art. Good luck with that Jerry. This isn’t a problem with the architects, but with their clients. [Vulture]
It looks like the Baltimore Museum of Art has retrieved its stolen Renoir from Baltimore resident Marcia Fuqua, who’d bought the painting at a flea market for $7. Since the work was stolen, the court ruled that Fuqua doesn’t have a right to it. The work was estimated in value at between $75,000-$100,000. [TAN]
Jeffrey Deitch gets a profile in New York Magazine, which washes over curator Paul Schimmel’s dismissal in favor of a creating an image of a “swashbuckling” badboy whose sensational shows were too New York for LA to handle. This is in part true, since L.A. residents didn’t seem to want a celebrity focus in their museums. But Deitch was never supposed to be the museum’s curator, he was its director, and he failed in that department when he lost the support of the board and didn’t raise the necessary funds. He’s a better curator, he’s going back to that, and is looking into space in Red Hook and the so-called SuperPier on the Hudson at 14th Street. [Vulture]
Looks like Occupy may be re-emerging? After Anonymous holds a Bush protest today at Grand Central the Whitney Museum will host an “officially sanctioned” Occupy network at the museum tomorrow night. [twitter]
Former New York Times Editor Bill Keller is upsetting people again. This time, following his wife’s lead in The Guardian, he ruminates on whether Lisa Bonchek Adams, a cancer patient suffering from 4th stage breast cancer, tweets too much. Can’t wait for the New York Times Public Editor Margaret Sullivan to weigh in on this one. [The New York Times]
The Globe and Mail’s Artists of the Year are predictably conservative. Painter Kim Dorland is dubbed “artist of the wild”, and why is Vince Gilligan, an American, the recipient of awards given to Canadians? [The Globe and Mail]
The BBC may be bringing outside TV to North Korea. A senior diplomatic Brit is quoted as saying “I have always believed what brought down the Berlin Wall was not highbrow diplomacy but Dallas and Dynasty.” [TIME]
Artist, filmmaker, and now generally popular person Steve McQueen took home the Golden Globe for Best Picture for 12 Years a Slave at last night’s ceremony. [Gawker]
In case you missed it last week, Amanda Hess really stirred the pot with her Pacific Standard cover story “Why Women Aren’t Welcome on the Internet.” She details death threats that have come her way for writing frankly about sex, and notes statistics that show that this kind of abuse happens far more often to women than men. Times op-ed columnist Ross Douthat responds and suggests that ridding the Internet of male-on-female comment wars is “ultimately a task for men” and involves finding “a more compelling vision of masculine goals,” neither of which is going to help out female writers who’re dealing with trolls right this second. [The New York Times]
The people who dress as blow-up dolls are coming out, and have done so through the documentary “Secrets of the Living Dolls”. We can’t watch the whole thing because we’re not in the area, but maybe our UK readers will have more luck with it. [laughing squid]
And because we’re constantly thinking about butt plugs in preparation for our upcoming benefit auction, I found the “baby Jesus butt plug” who may have been birthed by an alien. [The Slaughter House]
Tuesday morning greetings. Time to bundle up! The Times reported temperatures of 4 degrees. That’s not gonna instantly turn boiling water into snow, but, you know, wear layers. And if you’ve got a spare coat, donate it to the New York Cares Coat Drive. They’re reporting a severe shortage of coats this year, and in this weather, people can’t afford to go without them.
It’s really cold out, so now we can declare this global warming fear mongering “bullshit”. Ah, Fox News, where would The Daily Show be without you? [The Daily Show]
It looks like MOCA is out of the woods, having met its goal to raise its endowment to $100 million and hopes to raise it to $150. It has yet to appoint a new director. [LA Times]
VICE has suggestions for making British art more interesting. High on the list: NO NEW AESTHETIC. [Vice]
Brooklyn real estate by the numbers. What do we learn? Architect Karl Fischer designed an astounding 50 new buildings in Williamsburg since 2002, making his vision and aesthetic for buildings the most dominant in the neighborhood. Also, Bed-Stuy is on the rise. [New York Magazine]
James Elkins has published an excerpt from his book North Atlantic Art History and Worldwide and asks, “Is art instruction global?”. The argument here is that homogeneous art instruction is a bad thing. I get that, but shouldn’t some basic instruction look pretty similar? What’s wrong with that? [Google docs]
Here’s an n+1 podcast for us; the latest looks at art world inequality and social practice. [n+1]
Welcome New Yorkers to a world snow. Welcome twitter users, to the next 48 hours of New Yorkers talking about snow.
Thanks to everyone who donated to our year-end campaign. We’ve officially run out of 8×10 Bruce High Quality Prints, so a huge shout out to everyone who helped make that happen. Those who donated on the 31st also got tickets to our forthcoming benefit. We’re continuing that early bird sale, sans the prints, so pick up your tickets now.
Meanwhile, some news around the web.
Philanthropists are actually hiring PR firms to brag on their behalf about their role in a rigged market? A quote from an email critic Christian Viveros-Faune received recently, “In regular finance, if you have insider information about a stock, it is illegal to invest in that stock. In the art world, it is not only legal, it is done regularly. Peter Hort, along with his wife and family, are the people who create the insider information.” Anyway, Viveros-Faune is calling for market regulation. Already, I’ve read tweets from people who fear said regulation will soil the art. Good grief. [The Village Voice]
Benjamin Sutton is no fan of artist Jon R. Friedman’s official portrait of NYC’s former Mayor Michael Bloomberg, complaining that the painting is most notable for its “resolute mundaneness”. I disagree! Could their be a stranger mix of photographic realness and flattening of space? I do wonder, though, whether Mayor Bloomberg really has such short fingers. That would be notable indeed! [In the Air]
Barry Schwabsky does a good job of talking about both the art and the issues in “Come Together: Surviving Sandy”. Any reasonable review of this show has to mention that it takes place in Industry City, which has been busy forcing artists out of its buildings for the past year. [The Nation]
Talk at year-end gallery parties was all about where they would go for their vacation. Also, Jeffrey Deitch is opening a large space in Red Hook. [Artforum]
Tonight I’ll be awarding the “Paddy Johnson Prize” at A.I.R. Gallery to one lucky artist in their generations show. Come out to this. I’m kind of excited to have a prized named after me, so there’s that. But also, come on. You’re gonna be stuck at home tomorrow due to the snow, so you gotta get your art fix in now anyway. [A.I.R. Gallery]
Smarm gets a mention in Artforum. Smarm, according to Tom Scocca, (and paraphrased by Rhonda Lieberman) “is pious about shutting down discussion in the name of bogus “niceness.”” For the record, I am perfectly happy publishing smarm. I know that doesn’t sound great at the outset, but content farming seems to make many of us think that everything needs discussion. Not true. Sometimes debate merely legitimizes an insidious idea. Nobody needs that. [Artforum]
A celebritory New Years greeting over at Hyperallergic from Man Bartlett. [Hyperallergic]
Earlier this week, the Internet was abuzz with rumors of Jeffrey Deitch’s departure from MOCA. At 9:37 PM Eastern Standard Time, MOCA sent out an email announcing a major change ahead for Los Angeles’ contemporary art museum.
Yesterday’s rumors have been confirmed (albeit anonymously). The New York Times reports that MoCA Director Jeffrey Deitch will resign three years into his five year contract. [The New York Times]
Another massive blow to mega collector Steven Cohen. Federal Authorities will level criminal indictment against his hedge fund company, SAC. This could effectively shutter the company, which employs about 1000 workers. [Dealbook]
There is a hidden promise built into the act of making a photograph, particularly with portraiture. A hint of salvation, as if the camera can act as a portal to a better place. This would obviously be more pronounced in places like prisons, conflict zones or psychiatric hospitals but even on the street we were bewildered when people agreed. At about the time this doubt started creeping in we both read a remarkable book by Janet Malcolm called “The Journalist and the Murderer,” where she wonders incredulously why anyone would reveal so much to a journalist, in her experience often more than she felt they would reveal to a shrink. We began to feel the same about images. Why would anyone agree to being photographed without a full understanding of the potential political, cultural and economic currency of the images. That eco-system, the moral, political and financial world that images work in began to interest us more than the individual images. So our work began to look at revealing the mechanisms at work around image making, distribution and consumption. Its hard to do this if you’re just making pictures which for the most part leaves you at the bottom of this powerful food chain. [CPHmag via: Greg.org]
Another start-up that wants to put more art on people’s walls. ARTtwo50 is an iPad app that allows users to picture what a work would look like over their couch or above their bed. Once the customer has chosen the art work, ARTtwo50 will “demystify” the pricing structure of the art world by pricing all the art on the site $250. [TechCrunch]
Richard Phillips has come up with a rescue plan for Detroit: Detroit Basel. [Twitter]
Is the art work critical of capitalism on display at the Goldsmith’s MFA show actually complicit with it? “A Letter to Goldsmiths art students on capitalism, art and pseudo-critique” [Prolapsarian via Bad at Sports]
The West is recognizing bizarre, old Japanese porn as art. Japan is not as keen on the idea. [Bloomberg]