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Tag: 80s

The Ryman Rooms at Dia:Beacon

Today and tomorrow will be my last articles for the foreseeable future on Dia:Beacon. Not that I won’t be writing about it reasonably soon – oh I will. It’s just that things do keep moving and I need to respect that.

This will come as a big shock to anyone who has read this blog before. The Ryman rooms in my opinion are remarkable. The rooms are just amazing – super active and really quiet all at the same time, in a way very similar to what used to be called ambient music (the Fripp/Eno variety). They have a quiet power that would not surprise you, or anyone familiar with Ryman’s work, but the surprises in the paint and especially the sensitivity of the application of the paint was just phenomenal – almost shocking in it’s sensitivity.

For those of you who think white is just white – take a look at these rooms. Every (white) painting shows a different depth and tone that is just not an accident. These are not a painted with a bunch of Titanium White to make them “cohesive”. They are clearly an expression that has taken it’s time to reflect and absorb what they are doing among each other.

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An artifact from the past

The above graphic was at once interesting and a little bit unnecessary. Upon further review I also have to doubt it’s authenticity – I mean who has a typewriter with two type sizes? I do find the meat of the document curious though.

Thought you might as well.

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NYC chelsea crawl before official beginning of summer – part two

Yesterday I spoke of how museums must be on the run from galleries and how galleries are able to add a little bit of extra titillation with the impact of commerce around the show. The Metropolitan Museum is showing The Pictures Generation 1974 – 1984 and funny enough, it seems to be the show that is the current blueprint for what is being shown downtown right now. Featuring 29 artists – many of whom are now “big names” in galleries it is no surprise that these artists are in sprit leading the current feel for what is being shown. Thats a blessing and a curse. Because yes, you have the big names; Cindy Sherman, Richard Prince, John Baldessari, David Salle, etc. you also have some names that maybe were not as accessible especially to a museum crowd; Glenn Branca, MICA-TV, Thomas Lawson.

The down side to this show is very clear. We are as a culture somehow creating and showing work that is clearly in the shadow of these artists. For some reason we are unable or unwilling to push further away or pull even closer to these ideas and approaches. Granted the pluralistic tendency of the period is hard to get past – however there are people going in different directions that seem to be having at least some success.

I confess to just running out of time tonight with this post – tomorrow I’ll be naming names and discussing some of the more interesting shows I saw in my weekend in New York.

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There is a ton of interest in Jeff Krulik right now.

The thing is, there should always be a lot of interest in Jeff Krulik.

I would say that most people know him for the best rock documentary ever made, Heavy Metal Parking Lot. HMPL was filmed in the parking lot at the Capital Center in the early eighties before a Judas Priest/Scorpions show. The movie pretty much gives you all you would ever want as far as mullets, perms, pubestaches, and general hessian behavior. The thing is though the interest in these folks seem real and genuine. I do believe that Krulik’s work bears a interesting resemblance to one of the primary male preoccupation’s (after sex) record collecting.

What I mean in particular is that the cataloging and (nerdy) interest in the groups of people that he films seems to be overly rich in detail and cultural signifiers, he allows the subjects to simply be and in that approach his work has a biting sincerity that is far superior to the only other artist who is as interested in the “trainspotting gene” as he is, Richard Prince. I love Richard Prince, but Krulik is less removed and more in the moment and for me, that makes a big difference in the experience of the work. I guess you could say that where Krulik is hot, where Prince is cool.

Sidebar: if anyone has a vinyl version of Television’s Double Exposure let me know, the songs with Richard Hell are a bonus. The interesting thing to me is the two pre-Marquee Moon sets of studio recordings, including their very first demos with a relatively new producer named Brian Eno.

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I never thought that I would write about facebook – but what the hell. Over the holiday my college class (Corcoran School of Art) discovered each other on facebook when a couple of people started posting photos of our time together. I’ve never been one to be too sentimental, I almost religiously skip reunions, etc but when these photographs were placed in front of me, it sent me into a tizzy of compulsively and incessantly thinking about things from when I was in school. To be frank, the thinking about myself was not too kind. I guess it’s easy to see your failings when they are behind you, and view others as being more in control, attractive, whatever adjective you might use. I would probably guess that we were all kind of fucked up, but I think I’m near the top of that list. It’s very probable that I still am.

For the most part I’m camera shy, so I didn’t think that there were too many pictures of me around – well one surfaced yesterday and although the shirt I’m wearing in it is about the greatest shirt ever known to man (for the record, that shirt is a white, van huesen, 100% cotton, with a tab collar – yes, I wear it better than Peter Zaremba of the Fleshtones and even better than Dylan did on the cover of Blonde on Blonde), In the photo, I look either bitter or unhappy (maybe both), so I went home and rummaged around my old negatives and found a couple of things.

I realized I was even more pretentious than I thought I was. So in an act of stupidity, enjoy. Please don’t ask for me to scan all 36 shots – I could barely deal with the few I did scan. I think I’m still wearing that shirt as well. I still need to find a somewhat friendly photo of me also.

I also stumbled over a few photographs of the collages I was doing in school – I scanned them also. I will be back in the present tomorrow or so.

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