DEMO TARGETS SOTHEBYS "JOHNNY CASH" PARTY
The protest against the Republican National Convention is coming to Sothebys at 4 p.m. today, Aug. 31, 2004. Part of a widespread campaign of civil disobedience mounted by the A31 Action Committee, the demonstration targets the party for GOP stars being held by the Tennessee Republican delegation at the York Avenue headquarters of the auction house. The fete is sponsored by the American Gas Association, a network of 150 utility multinationals. "Defend the honor of Johnny Cash," www.defendjohnnycash.org, "and express what would be Cashs outrage over the Bush Administrations malign neglect of the poor in this country."
Protestors are expected to dress in black and bring real or cardboard guitars. "It made my blood boil," said one event organizer, "to hear that Johnny Cashs name would be tied to the 2004 RNC." The poster for the event reads "No Cash for the rich." Sothebys first big sale of the fall season, Sept. 14-16, 2004, features more than 650 lots from the estate of Johnny and June Carter Cash, ranging from handwritten lyrics and instruments to platinum records and his 2002 Ford pick-up truck.
MOMA BERLIN HITS MILLION MARK
The millionth visitor to the celebrated "MoMA in Berlin" exhibition at Berlins Neue Nationalgalerie is expected at about 10:30 a.m. on Sept. 1, 2004, according to the museum, and Berlin mayor Klaus Wowereit and other notables are going to be on hand to welcome the lucky art lover. The prize? A free trip for two to New York for the Nov. 20 opening of the new Museum of Modern Art building.
The Berlin exhibition of MoMAs treasures has been a sensation since it opened last Feb. 20 [see "Berlin, Starstruck," Feb. 23, 2004], and recently made headlines again when wacky art historian Werner Spies complained that the exhibitions understandable focus on American art represented "cultural colonialism." The show, "Das MoMA in Berlin: Meisterwerke aus dem Museum of Modern Art, New York," remains on view till Sept. 19, 2004.
ART AT KENNEDY AIRPORT
The landmark TWA Terminal designed by Eero Saarinen in 1962 at Kennedy Airport closed in 2001, a casualty of the rapidly modernizing business of air transport. Now, the famed streamlined concrete structure is coming alive in "Terminal 5," Oct. 1, 2004-Jan. 31, 2005, a multipart exhibition on the theme of air travel organized by Rachel K. Ward. The show features works made specifically for ticket counters, luggage carousels and other airport sites, and includes works by Vanessa Beecroft, Dan Graham, Kendell Geers, Toland Grinnell, Jenny Holzer, Anri Sala and Tom Sachs, among others.
Artist and designer Tobias Wong has organized a gift shop that features products by Colette from Paris, Art Metropole from Toronto and something about duty-free cigarettes by Richard Prince. The "arrivals" lounge features live events, and a media lounge presents a program of artists videotapes. Among the sponsors of the show are JetBlue Airways and the Port Authority of NY & NJ, which have just signed an agreement for a new JetBlue terminal that will preserve and add to the Saarinen structure.
SACRED CHAPEL FOR NEW YORK
New York worshipers at the church of psychedelia are soon to have their own chapel in Chelsea. Painter Alex Grey -- the former scientific illustrator and East Village art scene stalwart who has a wide New Age following for his cosmic, figurative paintings (see www.alexgrey.com) -- is opening his long-planned Chapel of Sacred Mirrors upstairs from the Spirit New York nightclub at 540 West 27th Street on Sept. 22, 2004. Designed as a "sanctuary for contemplation and a center for events encouraging the creative spirit," the installation features Greys monumental series of 21 works (19 paintings and two etchings).
Each work depictss a life-sized figure embodying a different energetic or symbolic system; viewers are invited to "mirror the images" to gain a sense of seeing "ourselves and each other as reflections of the divine." The chapels programs include "full moon" prayer gatherings that feature chanting, praying and drumming, and meetings of the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies, a group that strives to develop psychedelic drugs into FDA-approved prescription medicines.
EAST GERMAN PAINTERS IN NEW YORK
The New York art worlds first concentrated look at a group of hot new artists from Leipzig in the former East Germany is slated to open at Marianne Boesky Gallery in Chelsea, Sept. 8-Oct. 2, 2004. Dubbed "Clara-Park: Positions of Contemporary Painting from Leipzig," the show is organized by curator Christian Ehrentraut (who plans to open his own project space in Berlin in 2005) and features works by eight artists: Tilo Baumgrtel, Stephanie Dost, Franziska Holstein, Martin Kobe, Tobias Lehner, Christoph Ruckhberle, David Schnell and Matthias Weischer. The most famous artist from the city, home of the traditionalist Leipzig Academy of Visual Arts, is arguably Neo Rauch, who is represented (as are Schnell and Weischer) by Galerie Eigen + Art in Leipzig and Berlin.
GRAND STREET CEASES PUBLICATION
WEBER TO TANG TEACHING MUSEUM
Grand Street, the celebrated New York literary and arts journal published since 1990 by Jean Stein, has ceased publication. Originally a quarterly, the magazine suspended operations for two years and flirted with moving to an online format before resuming in print as a biannual with a new design in 2003. The most recent issue, which came out in April (with a cover price of $15), was on the theme of "delusions" and featured an illustrated essay by Don DeLillo and artworks by Salvador Dal, James Ensor, Henri Michaux and Gillian Wearing. Last chance for back issues -- see www.grandstreet.com.
John Weber, curator of education and public programs at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, has been appointed director of the Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery at Skidmore College in Saratoga Springs, N.Y. He succeeds Charles Stainback, who is now director of Site Santa Fe in New Mexico.