Archive for theanyspacewhatever

Angela Davis Recap, AnySpacewhatever Pictures, Halloween

Posted in Book, Guide to What's Good with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 31, 2008 by thebrooklynsocialite

The crowd at Angela Davis’ talk last night was pretty spectacular, v. Dyke March NYC meets Critical Resistance, Oakland plus a large helping of Eugene Lang Students and free Mumia activists. The vibe was very serious though, not to many accidental lover pick-ups or new friendships made, the main focus was on the star of the show: Angela Davis. (Definitely on the Good List)

She spoke about another iconic figure who is regarded in a sometimes similar light, our next president, Barak Obama. As a socialist, Davis was not so much advocating for Obama on the merits of his democratic policy proposals or his moderate-left record in office. Instead, she spoke of his power as a real milestone of progress and a symbol of it. The election of the first Black President has a collective significance on our society, which actually overpowers his personal significance as an individual, she asserted.

My favorite moment in this discourse was when she offered her analysis of McCain’s run in with the woman from Minnesota who said, “I can’t trust Obama, he’s an Arab.” Mccain responded, “No mam he is not an Arab. He is a decent family man and a U.S. citizen. This is the very exceptionism which so perfectly defines modern racism. It is as if to say, ‘Well Obama may be black, but he went to Harvard, he’s one of us.’ Or, ‘I am fine with gay people, as long as they don’t try anything on me, I have plenty of gay friends.’ McCain did not address that there was a problem with her anti-Arab racism. The way he attempted to clear Obama’s name was by justifying that he is “decent” and ‘one of us’ because he is a “family man.” Thereby not being Arab, being heterosexual, and being committed to “family values” acquits Obama, and anoints him as a good, normal American.

That was the highlight for me, but she touched on so many good points, essentially, 1. racism is not over, we must know our history, celebrate the milestones, but focus on how much further there is to go. 2. prisons must be abolished and they are systemically racist- dating all the way back to slavery, she also talked a lot about the role that surveillance plays in coloring the prison population. 3 Davis, kind of mocked the internet a bit, hey I resemble that! Other than the quips that implied that google and youtube were sort of un-cool, I have to say Angela Davis has earned the attention of her supporters. I bought her book afterwards, so look forward to a review!

Now for a couple of overdue AnySpaceWhatever pictures.

Liam Gillick

Liam Gillick

a Robyn's eye view

a Robyn's eys view

Are We Evil

Are We Evil

And finally, happy Halloween. I am hiding out at home with a bag of candy, prepared for trick or treaters, so if you know where I live, ring my bell!

Inkblot Kelly, NY2022, Obama/Baldwin, Bitch, Edgar Keret

Posted in art, Book, Guide to What's Good, Music, The bad list with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 25, 2008 by thebrooklynsocialite

I want to talk about the futuristic performance art piece that accompanies the AnySpaceWhatver exhibition.

The performance, entitled NY2022 combines Balenciaga dresses, with the Staten Island , Richmond County Orchestra, 82 year old singing actresses and a shower, a bicycle and a hot plate. Based on the 1973 Sci-fi film Soylent Green, the artist Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster creates an image of New York in the future. Apparently it is a place where people lovingly pour water over each other in lieu of actual showers, and where music and clothing, although beautiful (Balenciaga dresses) and lackadaisical, are gradually dissipating.

On the Subway downtown, I was wedged between the Russian members of the Staten Island Orchestra, although this environment was decidedly less glamorous then the Guggenheim, I felt a kindred connection with my fellow Brooklyn Socialites. Yes they live in Staten Island, but the point is that they are subway riding, comfortable shoe wearing, down to earth recessionistas like me.

When I arrived downtown, I was just in time to see Bitch and Feron at Joe’s Pub, which was a little folksy slice of the west coast from Daniela Sea’s lovely female folk singer girl-friend. The show was quite sweet, it made me feel like camping, and watching lakes. At one point, Ferron commented that new Yorkers view trees as concepts, that they are not in fact real to us. It was a joke, but I want to shout “Hey, I resemble that!” (which is a play on ‘I resent that’ For other fun pun’s in the sun dig this little gem of a site

And, it’s about time that I rail off about a few books and publications that I have been perusing these past few days. First of all did anyone else read the epic comparison of Barak Obama with James Baldwin in the NY Review of Books? What the? This brings to mind other “well matched” personages such as Orwell and Waugh. Until Barak comes out and publishes something with a little more literary merit than his “touching” autobiography provided, I will have to maintain my gasp. I love our next president, but don’t mess with Baldwin.

Speaking of writers, I caught Edgar Keret at Housing Works. He read from his latest book, A Girl on the Fridge. I really can’t speak volumes about his work, although it is very popular and often recommended to me. Its conspicuous lack of political choices, for a collection of stories set in conflict rich Israel/Palestine is a bit off putting. The style and subject matter is also v. male and seems to neutralize violence. However, the lady poets, who read before him, presented well crafted verse. Housing works still rocks!

I am also proud to share my new clothing website, Yay! The BS is also a Designer x www.InkblotKelly.com That lovely model is sporting IK gear below x

TheAnySpaceWhatever initial Review

Posted in art with tags , , , , , , , on October 24, 2008 by thebrooklynsocialite

Ok folks this post is going to be a little computer challenged as I am forced to iPhone send it. My initial reaction to the anyspacewhatever exhibition which opened yesterday at the Guggenheim is: I loved the wall text and the hanging plaques that redirect the typical flow of museum traffic. They say things like various admissions above the ticket booth and cookoo sanctuary above the coat check. Then the walls whisper, for example: “every time you think of me you die a little”. A message to your ex or a cross affirmation? I wonder. One patron upon exit said that tourists would be disappointed after paying 18$ to enter. Oh, the tourist, but what about the art critic? So far i can tell you that the bid towards experiential art and the rejection of the basic concept of asthetic display is compelling, but I’ll get back to you after further consideration!

Pics to come.

Murakami contentious review!

Posted in art with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 24, 2008 by thebrooklynsocialite

Here it is:

Is a Ph.D. in fine art a pre-requisite for the production of sexually offensive, hyper-color, infantile comic book styled corporate clutter? If your name is Takashi Murakami than the answer is, “yes”. The self-proclaimed creator of a new art movement entitled Superflat, which refers to what Murakami has defined as the lack of distinction in Japan between high and low art, as the flat space in between. A trend he points to in traditional as well as contemporary Japanese art. According to the artist, “Japanese don’t like serious art. But if I can transform cute characters into serious art, they will love my piece.”

Murakami maintains that his goal is to question the Japanese obsession with western art and immature consumerism, by blurring the lines between art and commerce. However, rather than critiquing this shift, his work further intensifies the magnetism. Murakami describes postwar Japanese impotence as a void, popularly obscured by Hello Kitty dolls that the artist has stepped in to fill with ultra commercial merchandise as art. A man who can sell paintings for 1.3 million and toy figures for 50 bucks a pop has demonstrated his capabilities as a marketing genius. Perhaps his designation as the new Andy Warhol and best contemporary Japanese pop artist is just another example of his promotional mastery.

Born in Tokyo in 1962 from working class parents, Murakami earned a BA, MFA, and Ph.D. in traditional Nihonga painting from Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music. Growing up, he was a member of the Otaku geek subculture, which centers around anime (cartoons) and manga (comic books) that often depict the explosion of the atomic bomb and gritty realities in post-war Japan. They also sometimes serve as outlets for repressed sexual fantasies. Otaku are mainly young Japanese men, who like American trekies or renaissance fair enthusiasts, collect figurines, and go to trade shows, except in this case the figures are often sparsely glad young girls called, bishojo.

As otaku relates to Murakami’s art it is a borrowing from cartoons and animations with the sexual or grotesque element almost made palatable by containing a somewhat child-friendly veneer. The latter is the imposition of an element called kawaii, or cuteness. This presence is found increasingly in his more recent work. Paintings such as Tan Tan Bo capture a combination of otaku and kawaii, which culminate in the figure of a bloodthirsty, yet colorful, cheery caricature. It is this very reference to morbid isolationism, augmented with hyper-color joy, which has rocketed Murakami into the mainstream. Millions of dollars later, he is still known to sleep many nights alone in a sleeping bag in a small building attached to his Japanese factory.   Read More!pleasexx

Tan tan Bo- Murakami

Tan tan Bo- Murakami

Thanks for listening and loving art like I do (except when you take objection to it!) Speaking of art, tomorrow you can expect a full review of the new AnySpaceWhatever exhibition at the Guggenheim. Until then! your faithful Brooklyn Socialite.