Istanbul this Fall

IMG_6043Capitalizing on it’s East-Meets-West status, Istanbul (Not Constantinople) has become a major center of arts and culture events rivaling the traditional venues of Rome, Milan, London, and Paris.

I recently returned from 3 terrific weeks in Turkey, which included an unexpected invitation to a “Forum Fashion Week” reception.    Turkey?, Fashion Week ?  Yes Turkey has one, and it’s not all Burkas.    Browse the Istanbul Modern calendar,  or read about the current Joan Miro exhibit and other Istanbul events.   Turkey is my favorite destination.  The people are friendly, and the history is so vast and layered. It is the center of the world and the history is everywhere.   I hope that the current challenges are met and don’t spoil this wonderful country.

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MC ANTON Blending In in Istanbul

MC ANTON

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Diane Keaton at Book Hampton in East Hampton

Diane Keaton book signing at BookHampton in East Hampton

Diane Keaton at her BookHampton book signing. Here with Hanne H7L

Diane Keaton at her BookHampton book signing. Here with Hanne H7L

IMG_3602 It was a wonderful summer day so nobody seemed to mind standing in a line with hundreds of people waiting to see and hear the fabulous Diane Keaton reading from her new book, “LET’S JUST SAY IT WASN’T PRETTY”. Diane, dressed in her own style, did not disappoint.  She spoke straight out in a humorous way about her life experiences and men in her life like Jack Nicholson and Woody Allen who both taught her a lot.  Beauty starts with being true to who you are, Diane writes, and she is certainly an individual. I personally enjoyed a lot seeing and listening to her. It was also nice that she chose Book Hampton for her book signing as one always finds a great atmosphere here.    

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Red Grooms:Torn From The Pages II at Marlborough Gallery March 19 – April 19, 2014

Red Grooms at Marlborough Gallery

Red Grooms at Marlborough Gallery

Red Grooms: Torn From The Pages II

at Marlborough Gallery
March 19 – April 19, 2014

Commentary by Hanne H7L, NowJournal.com

 Here in Red Grooms new work of nineteen small mixed media three-dimensional constructions Red Grooms  continues to celebrate other artists and their work.
We find Joseph Cornell of course in a box with blue sand juxtaposed with an object in “Sandtrap”.
The red haired Yayoi Kusama in “Galactic Orbs” is seen in three dimensions with her famous colorful dots all over created by watercolor, acrylic, ink and digital print on illustration and foam board.
 
Red naturally selected lots of colors to depict Frida Kahlo and her mexican house in “Casa Azul”.  Frida is clearly in the foreground and in the background is seen her husband Diego Rivera.
There is as always with Red’s work playfullness and a lot of things going on with the use of many different materials. In this exhibit Red has incorporated collages from magazines with other media.
One leaves the exhibit feeling uplifted.

Red Grooms Sandtrap (Joseph Cornell) 2013watercolor, acrylic, ink magazine pages and foam board

“Sandtrap” (Joseph Cornell) 2013. watercolor, acrylic and ink on magazine pages and foam board.

Red Grooms Galactic Orbs (Yayoi Kusama), 2013 watercolor, acrylic, ink and digital print on illustration board and foam board

“Galactic Orbs” (Yayoi Kusama), 2013. watercolor, acrylic, ink and digital print on illustration board and foam board.

Red Grooms Casa Azul (Frieda Khalo, Diego Rivera), 2013watercolor, acrylic and ink on magazine pages and digital reproduction on illustration board

“Casa Azul” (Frieda Khalo, Diego Rivera), 2013. watercolor, acrylic and ink on magazine pages and digital reproduction on illustration board.

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Some of the Highlights from the Hamptons November 2013

Some of the Highlights from the Hamptons November 2013:   Parrish Art Museum, The Drawing Room and Peter Marcelle Gallery

Photos and comments by Hanne H7L

This past weekend in the Hamptons offered up a veritable smörgåsbord of art to see, starting at the Parrish Art Museum’s Artists Choose Artist exhibition. A juried exhibition pairing established artists of the East End with a multitude of multi-generational artists of the area, there was no shortage of art to astound smattering the walls everywhere you turned.  I must say that the highlight for me was without a doubt the juxtaposition of

SH1 Laurie Anderson’s colossal charcoal drawing “Lolabelle in the Bardo” depicting her dog and the bare feet and coffee mug-baring hand of who is no doubt meant to be her late husband Lou Reed with the artists’ work of her choosing. The mixed media piece by Elizabeth Dow “Memory of a Perfect Day,” striking in its unconventional vertical panoramic dimensions served as an all too timely inclusion in coincidental tribute as well. By extension, Mary McCormick’s “Dream in a Blue Room” depicting a foreboding vision from a dream of six floating coffins for the six members of her nuclear family proved an ominous and oddly synchronic inclusion in itself.

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Elizabeth Dow, “Memory of a Perfect Day”, Mixed media

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Mary McCormick, “Dream in a Blue Room”

In commemoration of the Parrish’s one year in their new space, highlights from their permanent collection abounded as well. Apropos of local artists, of particular note to me was Jennifer Bartlett’s “Amagansett Diptych #1,” its textural qualities evocative of the late work of Gerhard Richter or Chuck Close in their deconstruction of a photographic aesthetic sensibility. An amusing juxtaposition to see on the wall was the pairing of an uncharacteristically intimate Jackson Pollock piece complemented by a Lee Krasner of similar dimensions (the Pollock of course displayed above the Krasner!).

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Jennifer Bartlett’s “Amagansett Diptych #1,” Oil on two canvases

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Jackson Pollock / Lee Krasner

Moving on to The Drawing Room I encountered some lovely pieces of clay sculpture by Toni Ross, inspired by ancient “soul houses” she encountered throughout museums in Cairo. The small ceramic cubes present a tidy yet rough hewn package that bring to mind questions about the function of our dwellings to house our corporeal forms, challenging us to consider both the practicalities and impracticalities of what are ultimate a series of simple boxes. Some have windows and doors while others present themselves as hermetically sealed with no defined entrance nor exit. Small and intimate yet wholly unsentimental, these are serious objects to contend with.

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Clay sculpture by Toni Ross

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clay sculpture by Toni Ross

Last but certainly not least I paid a visit to a rather curious show at Peter Marcelle Gallery by Jim Gemake, “Art of the Discarded Objects.” Though found objects are all too commonplace in mixed media sculpture in this day and age, Gemake’s aesthetic is absolutely timeless and his choice of materials does not pigeonhole him into the pitfalls of pop art and consumerist critiques. The patina of his materials complements but does not override his method of presentation. They are indeed lovely pieces to look at, and clever to boot.

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Jim Gemake, Art of the Discarded Objects.
“The Other Side Of The Moon?

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Jim Gemake, “Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore”

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AREA, The HOLE NYC

AREA

The Hole NYC

312 Bowery, NYC

November 6th-10th, 2013,   12-7pm daily

Text by Hanne H7L,  Photos by Hanne H7L and MC Anton

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The spirit of the legendary nightclub AREA, whose attendees represented a veritable who’s who of New York City’s art scene in the 1980’s was well represented at the opening reception of an exhibition of artwork at The Hole and culminating in an after party nearby at The Bowery Hotel this past Tuesday. The exhibition, in conjunction with the release of the 387 page AREA book from Abrams Publishing seeks to recapture the vision of the original club that every 6 weeks would transform the club’s original location at 157 Hudson Street according to a certain theme such as “suburbia,” “natural history,” “gnarly” and more.

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 Works from artists Andy Warhol, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Francesco Clemente, Chuck Close, Keith Haring, Jenny Holzer, Barbara Kruger, Sol LeWitt, Leroy Neiman, Larry Rivers, Maripol, Kenny Scharf, Julian Schnabel, Survival Research Labs and more were on display at The Hole along with long unseen ephemera and new works inspired by the club’s monumental impact on downtown arts and nightlife. Curated by Jeffrey Deitch, Serge Becker, Glenn O’Brien and AREA veteran and current Bowery Hotel owner Eric Goode and his sister Jennifer Goode, the show did not disappoint in its scope and magnitude of artists and work represented, the space effectively transformed into a nightclub featuring elaborate installation and performance artwork to dazzle the senses.

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One of the many surprising forms of performance art at the opening reception

At the after party at The Bowery Hotel the festivities showed no sign of letting up where AREA-inspired performances and installations abounded as well. Arguably the most enjoyable aspect of the entire event however was the broad range of age groups represented, ranging from veterans of the 80’s nightclub scene to younger and middle aged newcomers all co-mingling and having a good time. Such a changeover from the typically youth dominated nightlife scene in New York is welcomed. As the night wound down I was left to wonder why a venue resurrecting the creative energy and all around excitement of AREA in its original inception does not find a permanent home downtown.

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Sydney Albertini at Parrish Art Museum …And Also, I Have No Idea

Sydney Albertini at Parrish Art Museum

…And Also, I Have No Idea

August 10th-September 2nd

Photos and text by Hanne H7L

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The late painter John Little’s former home/studio at Duck Creek Edwards farm is itself a captivating space, and Parisian-born artist Sydney Albertini has transformed it for …And Also, I Have No Idea in an off-site installation presented by Parrish Art Museum. It is such a rare treat to come across innovative audience-participatory art, and Albertini has crafted such a work of art exquisitely. One can easily see why Albertini has selected Little’s studio for the location of her latest installation, Little having been a textile designer in life and textiles being such a strong component of Albertini’s work. The space as a part of the museum’s off-site series is an excellent complement to the museum’s new potato barn buildings that feature activities and attractions both indoors and outdoors; a refreshing change of pace from most museums that tend to be indoors-only venues.

Consisting of three domestic “scenes;” the bedroom, living room and dining room, Albertini’s work is part design, part performance, part installation and wholly inspired. Audience members are encouraged and in some cases required to don Albertini’s handmade knitted masks which despite their strong resemblance to ski masks have a playful yet mysterious quality, their colorful palette and patterned designs complementing the colors of the bed, living room and dining room sets that integrate both “soft” knitted and “hard” materials. By wearing the masks, audience members are granted admission to these sets to interact and play out archetypically domestic scenes.

I was so pleased to see so many visitors electing to participate in the pieces by wearing the masks and in doing so, act out and illustrate the domestic identities and roles Albertini wishes to explore. In particular there were quite a few families with young children in attendance, all the better suited to enact the household scenes Albertini has set up for them. All said and done, the work is sure to be enjoyed by audiences of all ages and is on view Friday-Sunday from 12-5pm and by appointment.

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Albertini’s masks available for viewers to wear

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Viewers donning the masks

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The Bedroom

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The Living Room

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The Dining Room

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Artists and Writers: They Played in the Game

Artists and Writers: They Played in the Game

Guild Hall Museum

July 15th-July 28th, 2013

Photos and text by Hanne H7L

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The Guild Hall Museum (of East Hampton, New York) is celebrating 65 years of its renowned Artists vs. Writers softball game with a special exhibition, representing a cross section of the proverbial “who’s who” amongst the artists and writers who have participated in the game. Starting in 1948 with a pick-up game including the likes of Willem de Kooning, Franz Kline and Jackson Pollock, the game began to escalate into an all-out rivalry between an artists team and writer’s team, featuring the likes of Pete Hamill, Tom Wolfe, Kurt Vonnegut and recruiting artists of all other sorts, including famous actors, television personalities, pop culture icons and even politicians such as Alan Alda, Christopher Reeve, Dick Cavett, Abbie Hoffman, Bill Clinton, Rudy Giuliani and many more than one can even begin to name here!

Last weekend visitors were treated to an enlightening and entertaining panel discussion moderated by Ed Bleier featuring the writers team of Carl Bernstein, Fred Grover, Juliet Papa, Mort Zuckerman and artists team Leif Hope, Eric Ernst, Walter Bernard, Ed Hollander and Lori Singer. The good-natured rivalry went to such lengths as to bring up which tool should be on top in the crossed pencil and paintbrush emblem emblazoned on the shirts commemorating the game: pencil for writers or paintbrush for artists (the compromise of course, being 2 different sets of t shirts). Though the writers have consistently performed better at the game than the artists (who often brought in professional athlete ringers to better their chances), the score has never been kept track of carefully.

Though the show is not up for much longer, the softball game itself will be taking place at 2pm on August 17th in Herrick Field, East Hampton. It is surely not to be missed!

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The panel of artists and writers at the opening of the show

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Cirque de Chien (Circus of the Dog), Jack Dowd, 2009

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Commemorative Quilt, Lynne Corwith Fraas, 2013. A & W shirts and hats designed by Walter Bernard since 1996.

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Opium Poppy, Dan Rizzle, 2002.

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Franz Kline and Ludwig Sander, 1950s (photographer unknown)

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