Archive for November, 2007
LA retail got a kick in the ass this weekend when PAPER MAGAZINE opened their 24-hour pop up shop/"Cultural Storefront" on LaBrea Ave @ 3rd Street where local hipsters swarmed (and queued) to get their hands on superfly goods on offer from international retailers like Colette, Opening Ceremony, Undefeated, M.A.C The Smell, Levi's Damien Hirst, Screaming Mimi's, Ooga Booga, Mollusk, Citizen-Citizen, PAPER art store, Family, RVCA, Kime Buzzelli's Showpony, Creative Growth, Jack Spade,Ã‚Â Lost + Found, William Good, Heartschallenger, Cobrasnake, Supreme, A+R, Ingo Maurer, Three Asfour, FUCT, Rodarte, and Jeremy Scott. And just like that, 24 hours later, it was all gone, with nary a trace of the hipster heaven that 233 S. LaBrea once housed. PEEP THE RECAP: Read More
Just when you thought you'd seen your last DAMIEN HIRST headline for a while, the head ringmaster of the circus that is the modern art world unveiled his latest shock and awe campaign at NYC's upscale LEVER HOUSE (54th & Park Ave) in the form of a vast installation of his trademark formaldehyde-preserved livestock (including a shark, 30 sheep, a split cow, and a pair of doves) economically titled "School: The Archaeology of Lost Desires, Comprehending Infinity, and the Search for Knowledge.Ã¢â‚¬Â Commissioned at a cost of $10 million by real estate developer Aby Rosen who owns Lever House along with several other high-profile properties including the Gramercy Park Hotel, the installation only cost Mr Hirst a cool Read More
Nary a week creeps by without some news regarding our favorite art outlaw turned high art demigod, BANKSY, but this week's notice in the EVENING STANDARD that the London district of Islington has given Banksy's street works official protection was trumped only by the revelation that Islington's city workers were now being trained as art conservators (using taxpayers' funds) so that they are able to touch up and otherwise mend Banksy's street installations that get defaced by other taggers:
COUNCIL ADDS ITS OWN TOUCH TO A BANKSY
By Jack Lefley, Evening Standard
Works by maverick street artist Banksy are being restored by council workers to protect them from graffiti vandals. One piece in Islington has been repaired five times by workmen who paint over the offending "tags". A worker was spotted retouching the artist's "Tate Gallery" piece in Martineau Road, near Arsenal's Emirates Stadium.
Banksy's work sells for six-figure sums to Hollywood stars such as Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie. But some of his pieces that appear in public places without permission have been condemned as vandalism. Tower Hamlets council has threatened to remove any work by the artist that appears on its patch without permission.
But it seems that Islington makes a clear distinction between his creations and that of the graffiti vandals " tagging" over his work. One onlooker thought the workmen were about to remove the piece in Islington on Monday afternoon and stopped to remonstrate with them. Vicky Bamforth, 40, of Hackney, said: "I was driving past and got out because I thought they were about to try to get rid of it. I asked them what they were doing and they were very cagey. But eventually they admitted that it kept getting vandalised and they were repairing it."
She added: "A lot of people in the area really like Banksy's work and it's a bit worrying the council thinks anyone with a paintbrush is qualified to restore pieces worth thousands. "At what point does it stop being a Banksy and start being a collaboration with Islington council?"
Islington today defended its policy to clean up and repair the artist's work. It insisted it was spending taxpayers' money on the operation in response to residents' demands. Deputy leader and executive member for environment, Lucy Watt, said: "We take a very hard line on graffiti and remove it within 24 hours when it is reported to us. However, residents have been telling us Banksy is in a class of his own, his art sells for thousands, and they don't want us to remove the work. Because of the quality and renown of Banksy's work in Islington many people want to see it preserved."
LA-based artist NATALIA FABIA (aka: "The Lowbrow Paris Hilton") is a master of her image (just try to miss her at a Hollywood art opening) but few people know that she's a master of the paintbrush too. Her new show, "Hooker Safari," featuring an array of the artist's equally sultry accomplices in provocative wilderness scenes at Culver City's newest art hotspot, the COREY HELFORD GALLERY, proved that in spades at her appropriately glam opening this weekend. HAVE A LOOK: Read More
Supertouch ally & upcoming guest blogger KENNA rocked the Henry Fonda Theater in Hollywood this weekend alongside She Wants Revenge and The Start. It's gonna be a big year for our boy, whose recently released genre-bending album "Make Sure They See My Face" is breaking new ground, somewhere between the worlds of rock and R&B...
Seattle's prime underground art outlet, ROQ LA RUE (the most feared gallery title of any Japanese tourist) hosted an incredibly strong show of work by burgeoning painters SCOTT MUSGROVE, BRIAN DESPAIN, and RYAN HESHKA this weekend that brought a ray of light to the otherwise dim Northwest coast. Working in three distinctly individual but complimentary styles, each painter possesses incredible technique and enviable rendering chops that are in short supply in the so-called "Lowbrow" (god, we hate that term) art world. HAVE A LOOK: Read More
Art-centric clothing house RVCA finally opened the doors on its first solo retail outlet at the corner of Haight & Asbury in San Francisco last nite with a celebratory art opening "Family Tree," featuring new work by BARRY McGEE (aka: TWIST, aka: Robert Pimple), PHIL FROST, and CRAIG STECYK (unfortunately, scheduling conflicts prevented PUSHEAD from participating as advertised), installed throughout the space. If that weren't enough, opening nite attendees also got an incredibly rare display of live painting from Phil Frost who was planted in the center of the gallery quietly working on a stack of paintings throughout nite while TOMMY GUERRERO kept the vibe intact with a live set. Luckily for us, DARREN "DR" ROMANELLI (portraits) and lovely photographer-at-large JIALIN LUH (installation shots) were on hand to snap the action. HAVE A LOOK: Read More
Pennsylvania may lay claim to architectural greatness with its Frank Lloyd Wright home, Ã¢â‚¬Å“Falling Water,Ã¢â‚¬Â but now South Korea has stepped up to challenge the state with its own architectural marvel, a new home that might best be called Ã¢â‚¬Å“Running Toilet.Ã¢â‚¬Â Just outside of Seoul, South Korea, politician SIM JAE-DUCK's grand new toilet bowl-shaped residence has just been unveiled to an awestruck public. The home, nicknamed Ã¢â‚¬Å“HaewoojaÃ¢â‚¬Â: "a place of sanctuary where one can solve one's worries," by Sim (who happens to be chairman of the organizing committee of the Inaugural General Assembly of the World Toilet Association) was created with the intent to raise awareness for the more than 2 billion people who live without toilets worldwide. Built at a reported cost of $1.8m USD, the two-story glass and concrete construction features two bedrooms, two guest rooms, a center courtyard in the shape of a toilet seat hole, and three Ã¢â‚¬Å“luxuryÃ¢â‚¬Â bathrooms featuring sensor-activated toilet seats and automated soothing music. The highlight of the residence, however, is the grand Ã¢â‚¬Å“masterÃ¢â‚¬Â bathroom located in the center of the home that features state-of-the-art amenities and water conservation technology. The 74-year-old Sim who was actually born in a bathroom in keeping with his family's belief that people born in lavatories will enjoy long lives, moves in early next month, but the house will be available to rent at the day rate of $50,000 USD, with the proceeds going to his World Toilet Association's initiative for improving sanitation in developing countries. No word yet if the housewarming bash will be a Depends partyÃ¢â‚¬Â¦
Osakans got an amazing show of collaborative live painting by two masters of the black line when CHAZ BOJORQUEZ teamed up with USUGROW at Chaz' solo art showÃ¢â‚¬â€sponsored by THREE TIDES TATTOO and KAZE magazineÃ¢â‚¬â€at GALLERY 1F last weekend. For those still scratching their heads, Chaz Bojorquez is the originator of modern EastLos graphic art & letterform who's gone on to achieve critical acclaim in the world of advertising and fine art, while Usugrow is a Tokyo-based illustrator and fine artist whose fluid linestyle is heavily influenced by the work Bojorquez and Pushead. Separated by a generation, the pair represents a lineage of style that has evolved across cultures and geographical borders with shockingly similar results. Both share an affinity for rendering skulls (Bojorquez' "SeÃƒÂ±or Suerte" character is the basis of the modern Cholo calavera), and gorgeous, fluid lettering. When the pair teamed up to paint a gigantic panel before hundreds of awestruck onlookers, their shared lineage was obvious to all. Our good friends at THREE TIDES TATTOO and PSYCHO WHEELS were on hand to snap the action. HAVE A LOOK: Read More
Let's just say RON ENGLISH's new billboards advertising "Raquel's Topless Steakhouse: Glad Cow Disease" along Nevada's Route 215 were not exactly appreciated by the locals. Except the carnivorous, stripper loving, truck-driving ones. Reports that Raquel's has been bought out by Hooters remain unconfirmed...