Archive for February, 2010

HOLLYWOOD///THE “HOW MANY BILLBOARDS'” PROJECT TAKES TO THE SKIES

February 23, 2010  |  art, Billboard Liberation, LA, News, Skyjacking  |  Comments Off

billboard_kerri_tribe
Screen shot 2010-02-23 at 7.04.28 PM
Billboard by Kerry Tribe

If you live in Los Angeles, you're well aware of the increasing visual pollution caused by the endless propagation of billboards and supergraphics vying for every open inch of Southland skyline. A welcome break to the aesthetic ad-driven monotony comes in the form of the "HOW MANY BILLBOARDS" project, presented by the MAK CENTER, featuring the artwork of 20+ artists plastered (legally) on billboards at key locations in and around the Hollywood area. While the artist roster doesn't exactly blow our minds or, likely, the minds of many young people in the area(WTF, no Skullphone, Ron English, Allison Schulnik, Barry McGee, Barbra Kruger, Raymond Pettibon, Catherine Opie, or Chaz Bojorquez?!), the project itself is a great follow-up to the precedent-setting and more visually stunning ARTBOARD FESTIVAL that took place in LA in 1977 and featured artists like Rick Griffin and Ed Ruscha, a project that has been kept alive in recent years by UNDFTD who have maintained their eye-popping art billboard for several years now.

DIRECTOR'S STATEMENT
Kimberli Meyer

The philosophical proposition of the exhibition is simple: art should occupy a visible position in the cacophony of mediated images in the city, and it should do so without merely adding to the visual noise. How Many Billboards? Art In Stead proposes that art periodically displace advertisement in the urban environment.

Billboards are a dominant feature of the landscape in Los Angeles. Thousands line the city's thoroughfares, delivering high-end commercial messages to a repeat audience. Given outdoor advertising's strong presence in public space, it seems reasonable and exciting to set up the possibility for art to be present in this field. The sudden existence of artistic speech mixed in with commercial speech provides a refreshing change of pace. Commercial messaging tells you to buy; artistic messaging encourages you to look and to think.

Time and space allotted for artworks in commercial space is limited, and the sea of signs is vast. How can a billboard exhibition make a strong enough impact? Most importantly, the art cannot be passive. It must take a strategic approach, be critically oriented, and explore the billboard as a site.

Artistically and culturally, Los Angeles is an aggregate of dynamic histories. Experimental architecture has been active here since the early twentieth century, radical art since the 1950s. An acute awareness of urban space has always influenced both avant-garde architectural and art practices in Los Angeles. Southern California's overlaps and interweaves of architectural adventurism, pop, and Conceptual Art have generated rich environments for artistic production and yielded influential bodies of art. My co-curators and I felt that these So-Cal syntheses are relevant for the dynamics of pop-public space in Los Angeles today.

It's a win-win situation.

Los Angeles public space begs for smart art to break up the monotony of everyday media fare, and the billboard provides a fertile position for artists who work critically and site-responsively to test their ideas in urban media space. Contemporary art gains a momentarily broad audience, and city dwellers are extended a daily invitation to reflect and contemplate. Channels are opened for experimentation, innovation, and cultural exchange.

The MAK Center, the project partners, and I invite you to explore, enjoy, and tell us what you think.

*Read more about the project HERE...

billboard_yvonne_rainer
Billboard by Yvonne Rainer

billboard_david_lamelas
Billboard by David Lamelas

billboard_kenneth_anger
Billboard by Kenneth Anger

Share via emailShare on TumblrSubmit to reddit

NEWS///SUPERMAN COMIC BOOK SELLS FOR $1 MILLION

February 23, 2010  |  News, WTF???  |  Comments Off

053-joe-shuster

Hard to believe that a comic book sales record could be set at the peak of an unprecedented "recession," but that's exactly what happend this week when a near pristine copy of ACTION COMICS #1 featuring the debut of SUPERMAN traded hands anonymously for the princely sum of $1 million USD. Previous books have fetched in the $500K range but the high 8.0 grade of this museum quality example "warranted" its excessive pricetag. If we had to guess, we'd place newly broke actor Nic Cage in the room for this transaction as he's been selling off his incredible comic book collection for a minute now and even has a son named (wait for it) Kal-El, after Superman's true birthname. We really can't help but wonder, though, what someone in Haiti would think of this news...

*Click HERE to browse an original issue of Action Comics #1 cover-to-cover...

page12

Share via emailShare on TumblrSubmit to reddit

WTF?!? FILES///KOSTAS SEREMETIS DEBUTS NEW STAR WARS ART FILM IN MOROCCO

February 23, 2010  |  art, Film, News  |  Comments Off

kostas_seremetis_trilogy002_1

Supertouch buddy KOSTAS SEREMETIS has just completed his STAR WARS-based art film (yes, you read that correctly), "Trilogy." If that wasn't weird enough for you, the March 7th premiere will take place at the CINEMATHEQUE de TANGER in Morocco. Read on:

"TRILOGY"
2009 / 126 mins / by Kostas Seremetis

A moving visual and aural collage consisting of the Star Wars Trilogy, artist Kostas Seremetis edited this 126 minute film, taking the right third of Star Wars, the middle third of Empire Strikes Back and the left third of Return of the Jedi, synchronizing them to dissonant effect. Every frame is a study in Abstract Expressionist Pop art as this moving collage of the most iconic films of our time moves to the sounds of the three films playing simultaneously. Characters move in and out of portions of the screen, ships and battles appear and disappear melding into one part of the screen from another part while the third portion of the screen portrays a crucial moment of discovery in a character's development.

for more information contact:
info@cinemathequedetanger.com

**Still no YouTube trailer for the film, unfortunately. Kostas, WTF?!?...

kostas_seremetis_trilogy001_1

Share via emailShare on TumblrSubmit to reddit

ON EXHIBIT///MOUNTAIN CLIMBING WITH ED RUSCHA

February 23, 2010  |  News, On Exhibit  |  Comments Off

Screen shot 2010-02-23 at 1.27.49 PM
"Parking For Key Club," acrylic on canvas, 55 3/4" x 63 3/4", by Ed Ruscha

Amazing new paintings from Supertouch buddy and LA art legend ED RUSCHA. Ed's "Mountain" series is a longstanding hot commodity with a waiting list and pricetags starting past the $1 million mark. Definitely a better investment these days than real estate...

Screen shot 2010-02-23 at 1.28.29 PM
"Iron Age," acrylic on canvas, 36" x 40"

Screen shot 2010-02-23 at 1.29.12 PM
Fountain of Crystal, acrylic on canvas, 30" x 36"

Images courtesy our good friends at Gagosian LA...

Share via emailShare on TumblrSubmit to reddit

POLITIKS///MUST READ: MATT TAIBBI’S CUTTING “WALL STREET’S BAILOUT HUSTLE” EXPOSÉ IN ROLLING STONE

February 23, 2010  |  News, Politiks  |  Comments Off

32255204-32255209-slarge

Anyone not familiar with MATT TAIBBI's brilliant and cutting political analysis should start tuning in ASAP. His latest in-depth piece in the March 2010 issue of ROLLING STONE on the sham that is the government bank bailout is another must-read:

WALL STREET'S BAILOUT HUSTLE
Goldman Sachs and other big banks aren't just pocketing the trillions we gave them to rescue the economy - they're re-creating the conditions for another crash

By Matt Taibbi | ROLLING STONE, March 2010

On January 21st, Lloyd Blankfein left a peculiar voicemail message on the work phones of his employees at Goldman Sachs. Fast becoming America's pre-eminent Marvel Comics supervillain, the CEO used the call to deploy his secret weapon: a pair of giant, nuclear-powered testicles. In his message, Blankfein addressed his plan to pay out gigantic year-end bonuses amid widespread controversy over Goldman's role in precipitating the global financial crisis.

The bank had already set aside a tidy $16.2 billion for salaries and bonuses — meaning that Goldman employees were each set to take home an average of $498,246, a number roughly commensurate with what they received during the bubble years. Still, the troops were worried: There were rumors that Dr. Ballsachs, bowing to political pressure, might be forced to scale the number back. After all, the country was broke, 14.8 million Americans were stranded on the unemployment line, and Barack Obama and the Democrats were trying to recover the populist high ground after their bitch-whipping in Massachusetts by calling for a "bailout tax" on banks. Maybe this wasn't the right time for Goldman to be throwing its annual Roman bonus orgy.

Not to worry, Blankfein reassured employees. "In a year that proved to have no shortage of story lines," he said, "I believe very strongly that performance is the ultimate narrative."

Translation: We made a shitload of money last year because we're so amazing at our jobs, so fuck all those people who want us to reduce our bonuses. Click HERE to continue reading at ROLLING STONE...

Share via emailShare on TumblrSubmit to reddit

NEWS///THE NY TIMES REPORTS ON CRASH’S RETROSPECTIVE AT FAIRFIELD UNIVERSITY

February 23, 2010  |  art, Graffiti, Street Art  |  Comments Off

21artct_CA1-articleLarge
21artct_CA0-popup

The NEW YORK TIMES has just run a great piece on ST bro CRASH and his retrospective show, “Crash: From the 4 Train to Fenders" on view at FAIRFIELD UNIVERSITY through February 28 (don't miss it!):

TIPS FROM A MAESTRO OF THE SPRAY CAN
By Jan Ellel Spiegel | NYTimes, February 18, 2010

JASMINE JOHNSON is sprawled on the floor of the Thomas J. Walsh Gallery at Fairfield University here, her red high-tops in the air as she intently sketches on a two-foot-square sky blue canvas.

Nathaniel Jefferson is on a nearby bench, equally intent as he mulls the possibilities of a green canvas. Israel Medina, who goes by Tony, is outside in the cold, energetically spraying paint to transform a pink canvas propped against a tree.

“The wheels are turning,” says the artist John Matos, surveying the work.

These three art students from Bridgeport high schools will be joined by two schoolmates the following day as they work on a project designed by Mr. Matos, who goes by the name Crash (as a student he crashed his high school’s computer).

A child of South Bronx housing projects, Mr. Matos was younger than these teenagers when he began honing his art in the 1970s by breaking into a subway yard at night and spray painting the cars for hours in the dark and cold. Click HERE to continue reading at NYTimes...

Share via emailShare on TumblrSubmit to reddit

SPORT///STREET LIFE///WK INTERACT TAKES BRAND JORDAN TO THE STREETS

February 23, 2010  |  art, Graffiti, News, Street Art  |  Comments Off

Share via emailShare on TumblrSubmit to reddit

NEWS///FILM///BANKSY WILL SCREEN “EXIT THROUGH THE GIFT SHOP” DOCUMENTARY IN POP UP SUBWAY TUNNEL THEATER

February 22, 2010  |  art, Art Crimes, Banksy, Film, News  |  Comments Off

BANKSMOVTUBEE

Leave it to BANKSY to roll out the premiere of his "EXIT THROUGH THE GIFT SHOP" documentary in an unused London subway tunnel beneath the Waterloo train station—AND manage to keep the whole thing secret till now. Billed as "London's newest, darkest, and dirtiest purpose-built cinema," the venue is adorned with new Banksy art installations and rows of couches and theater seats, and even features a "popcorn stall, lounge bar, and stunning temporary toilet facilities." Daily screenings will take place at 6PM & 9:30PM daily until March 4th. Book your tickets HERE now...

Share via emailShare on TumblrSubmit to reddit

NEWS///OPENING NITE: SHEPARD FAIREY’S “SUPPLY & DEMAND” AT CINCINNATI CAC BREAKS ATTENDANCE RECORD

February 21, 2010  |  art, Feature, Graffiti, Midwest, News, Openings, Shepard Fairey, Street Art  |  Comments Off

Screen shot 20s10-02-21 at 7.54.39 PM Friday was a big nite in the Midwest when SHEPARD FAIREY's Ohio installment of his traveling retrospective "Supply & Demand" opened at the CINCINNATI CONTEMPORARY ARTS CENTER and shattered the institution's all-time attendance record.

Read More

FILM///NPR INTERVIEWS WITH ALL FIVE 2010 OSCAR NOMINATED DIRECTORS: JAMES CAMERON, QUENTIN TARANTINO, JASON REITMAN, LEE DANIELS, KATHRYN BIGELOW

February 21, 2010  |  Film, News  |  Comments Off

JAMES CAMERON (Avatar):
Avatar

QUENTIN TARANTINO (Inglorious Basterds):
inglourious basterds2

JASON REITMAN (Up In The Air):
Up-In-The-Air
Click HERE to listen...

LEE DANIELS (Precious):
Screen shot 2010-02-21 at 10.28.53 PM

KATHRYN BIGELOW (Hurt Locker):
Screen shot 2010-02-21 at 10.27.37 PM
Click HERE to listen...

Share via emailShare on TumblrSubmit to reddit