Showing posts from February, 2011

A Butoh Moment @ Ceres Gallery + Ulf Puder unearthed

Vernita  N'cognita lets fly in a hyper-controlled butoh fashion In the spirit of "you learn something new every day as long as you refrain from saying  meh, " I learned a new word today:  butoh . Butoh is a kind of mute performance so eloquently defined in Wikipedia, I've copy-pasted the definition here:  Butoh   ( 舞踏  Butō ? )  is the collective name for a diverse range of activities, techniques and motivations for  dance , performance, or movement inspired by the  Ankoku-Butoh   ( 暗黒 舞踏 ankoku butō ? )  movement. It typically involves playful and grotesque imagery, taboo topics, extreme or absurd environments, and is traditionally performed in white body makeup with slow hyper-controlled motion, with or without an audience. There is no set style, and it may be purely conceptual with no movement at all. Its origins have been attributed to Japanese dance legends Tatsumi Hijikata  and  Kazuo Ohno I love the part "with or without an audience,&

Tom Otterness: Horse and Rider redux!

Replicas of "Horse and Rider" - the full sized bronze original is at The Texas Tech University in Lubbock.   I am utterly beside myself ... I'm now the proud owner of not one, but two Tom Otterness sculptures, entitled "Horse and Rider." Now before commuters familiar with the Brooklyn artist's quirky little figurines strewn around Manhattan's subway stations accuse me of grand theft with a hacksaw (um, make that a chainsaw), these are cast resin  replicas. The read deal (and other objects of my profound desire) are being exhibited Feb 23 at the artist's outlet of choice,  Marlborough Gallery , and will probably set you back at least $7K, last I looked. I came face to nose with the real deal at the Armory Show, NYC, 2011 The "Horse and Rider" full-size bronze currently graces the campus of the Texas Tech University in Lubbock. The subject itself is a  loose interpretation of the Texas Tech Uni's mascot, ‘The Masked Ride

Jenny Krasner+Heather Sellers: Words + Scanner + Intent

Cookbooks in Bed with Lover Sleeping on the Side 9" X 6" Giclee Print, Edition of 25, $375 View series I've just started a 6-week Trends in Photography and Contemporary Art course at the School of Visual Arts, taught by New York art critic and consultant Brian Appel . The class has a number of working artists, blossoming artists, art appreciators, and "I can't draw for the life of me but I can just see it" arteests like me. Yup, I figured it was about time I expanded on my art knowledge from the "P" volume of the World Book Encyclopedia.  I confess that one of the most popular, dare I say, cliche paintings of all time, Henri Rousseau's Sleeping Gypsy, still sends a little buzz down my prefrontal cortex : Like a lucid dream: Henri Rousseau's The Sleeping Gypsy It's those toes on the footprintless sand ... the 3-D stripes of the robe ...  the beady eye of the lion ... the warped guitar strings ... brrrr! But I digr

Snap frozen moments: Masayo Nishimura at Ceres Gallery

Snap frozen Osaka: "Each person ... seems to convey his or her own personal life story even though they appear frozen in their action." Continuing on my photography-ogling odyssey , I chanced upon this wonderful shot in Ceres Gallery , a non-profit artspace for women artists. It's part of a show called "Recollections: From New York to Tokyo" by Osaka transplant Masayo Nishimura , who was manning the desk when I stumbled in on a rainy, icy Manhattan Saturday. The show features largely subway shots from both countries, with a handful of above-ground moments. Let me rant at length as to why I love this image. First, it's Japan. As of 2009, when  I visited Japan for the first time under the auspices of my job as a bicycle evangelist, I'm a hopeless Japanophile. Yes I have a Maneki Neko cat (2!) and a nabe pot  lugged from Kyoto. Yes I pedaled through its delirious, labyrinth-like cities, scarfed brilliant bento at train stations, surged with cr