FEMINISM & THE ART WORLD, 2006
Does feminism have anything to offer the art world in 2006? That question received an airing at a high-profile panel held on Jan. 7, 2006, as part of the New York Times "arts and leisure weekend." Chaired by art critic Roberta Smith, the discussion gained a certain notoriety after the young Israeli artist Tamy Ben-Tor proclaimed that she wasn't a feminist and that feminism "serves the weak" (a long report by Mira Schor can be found at M/E/A/N/I/N/G Online). Titled "Feminisms in Four Different Generations," the panel also included Collier Schorr, Barbara Kruger and Joan Snyder.
The question of art and feminism is due for further art-world attention -- though not any time soon. Some major events on the schedule, all in 2007:
* "Wack! Art and the Feminist Revolution" opens at the Geffen Contemporary of the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art, Apr. 4, 2007-June 18, 2007. Organized by MOCA curator Connie Butler, the show features works by ca. 100 artists from 1965-1980 and is billed as "the first comprehensive, historical exhibition" of feminist art.
* The Brooklyn Museum announced plans for the 8,300-square-foot Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art in 2002, but its opening has been pushed back to spring 2007. Designed to house Judy Chicago's The Dinner Party (1974-79) as well as temporary exhibitions and study space, the center is directed by Maura Reilly and is slated to open with an exhibition of contemporary feminist art from around the globe, with works by ca. 100 artists selected by Reilly and art historian Linda Nochlin.
* The College Art Association is devoting an entire day of panels to feminist art at its 94th annual conference in New York City, Feb. 14-17, 2007, according to Mira Schor, whose own panel is titled "Life of the Mind, Life of the Market: A Re-evaluation of the Contribution of Theory to Feminist Art from 1980 to 2006." (The CAA's 2006 conference is slated for Boston, Feb. 22-26, 2006, and includes two panels on feminism: "Impact of New Feminisms," organized by the Women's Caucus for Art, and "Between Feminisms," a discussion of feminism on a global level.)
* Finally, for those who have a more pressing interest, check out the new "Militant Art Bitch" blog at http://anonymousfemaleartist.blogspot.com.
D'ARCY SUES NPR, MOMA
Veteran art reporter and film correspondent David D'Arcy has filed a $5-million lawsuit against National Public Radio and the Museum of Modern Art, claiming that he was slandered after he reported a story about the long-running controversy over the ownership of Egon Schiele's painting, Portrait of Wally [see Artnet News, Mar. 8, 2005]. According to the New York Post, D'Arcy says MoMA retaliated against him for his report, complaining to NPR and mischaracterizing D'Arcy's story to make him appear to be "a reckless, dishonest, unethical and irresponsible journalist." The museum prompted NPR to post a "false correction" on its website, D'Arcy claims, by threatening "to cut off the news organization from stories and museum events." MoMA declined comment, while NPR told the Post that it had never been pressured by MoMA to fire D'Arcy and that an inquiry into D'Arcy's report found that it did not meet NPR standards.
MET HAS SECOND THOUGHTS ON DEACCESSION
The Metropolitan Museum has withdrawn a major sculpture by Spanish artist Eduardo Chillida that it had consigned for auction at Sotheby's London on Feb. 9, 2006. According to a story by Michael Kimmelman in the New York Times, the Met had its second thoughts after a complaint by Dallas collector Frank Ribelin, who had donated the 16-foot-wide forged steel sculpture to the museum in 1986. Titled Silent Music II (1983), the blocky abstraction was said by Sotheby's to be "unquestionably the most important work by Chillida to appear at auction" and estimated at £1,000,000-£1,500,000.
Adding to the sense of folly is the fact that Silent Music II is the only Chillida sculpture in the Met's collection -- and that it was sent to auction without notifying the donor, who learned of the impending sale from a friend. What's more, such a sale violates the Met's own bylaws, which mandate seeking approval from a donor if a work is sold within 25 years of its acquisition.
Met curator of 19th-century, modern and contemporary art Gary Tinterow seemed unrepentant. "It's enormously heavy," he told the Times. "We find ourselves in a difficult position, with our storage facilities filled." Later this year, Tinterow also plans to sell off works from the museum collection by Pablo Picasso, Chaim Soutine, Reuben Nakian and Gerhard Marcks, as well as its historic collection of plaster casts and a group of photographs from the Gilman Paper Company Collection.
HAMMONS UNAUTHORIZED AT TRIPLE CANDIE
Triple Candie, the nonprofit exhibition space on West 126th Street in Harlem, has mounted "David Hammons: The Unauthorized Retrospective," Jan. 8-Feb. 12, 2006. With nearly 100 items, the show is the most comprehensive ever of Hammons' work -- but it features no actual art, only photocopies and computer printouts taken from previously published catalogues, exhibitions brochures and websites. According to Triple Candie director Peter Nesbett, the show is meant as a populist attempt to share Hammons' work with a local audience. Hammons, who is notoriously enigmatic and aloof, rarely exhibits his work, Nesbett says, and when it does it's at blue-chip galleries, not in the neighborhood. Since it opened in 2001, Triple Candie has tried to interest Hammons in doing a show at the space, without success.
SCOPE FAIR MOVES OUT OF THE HOTEL
Scope New York has moved out of the hotel venue for good, according to Scope president Alexis Hubshman. For Scope New York, Mar. 10-13, 2006, the fair has taken 30,000 square feet of space at 636 Eleventh Avenue, near the piers that house the Armory Show. In addition to 80 participating galleries, Scope New York also features three curatorial programs: "Winner Take All," organized by David Hunt and Franklin Sirmans; "The Perpetual Art Machine," billed as an interactive multimedia spectacle of over 100 video, new media and internet artists (see www.perpetualartmachine.com); and free 103point9, a radio broadcast. For details, see www.scope-art.com
MANGLANO-OVALLE AT NEW NYPL BRANCH
The new $50-million, 78,000-square-foot "green" Bronx Library Center in the borough's Fordham section opens Jan. 17, 2006, and one attraction is a major percent-for-art commission by artist Inigo Manglano-Ovalle. Titled Portrait of a Young Reader, the work fills the entire wall by the staircase leading from the ground to the first floor, and is constituted by 71 laser-cut steel panels and over 3,000 glass circles, representing the DNA profile of an anonymous young reader from the Bronx.
HALLMARK COLLECTION TO NELSON-ATKINS
The Nelson-Atkins Museum in Kansas City has acquired the $65-million Hallmark Photographic Collection of ca. 6,500 photographs by more than 900 artists. Said to be the most important photo holding in private hands, the Hallmark collection was launched in 1964 with the acquisition of 141 prints by Harry Callahan. Keith F. Davis has been curator of the corporate collection since 1970, and now joins the Nelson-Atkins as its curator of photography.
About 30 Hallmark works are currently on view at the Nelson-Atkins, which is building a new $350-million expansion designed by Steven Holl that is due to open next year. Financial details of the Hallmark transaction weren't revealed, though it was apparently largely a gift, with the balance purchased with funds donated to the museum by the Greater Kansas City Community Foundation. Hallmark chairman Donald J. Hall is a trustee at the Nelson-Atkins.
NEW EDITION OF JANSON'S "HISTORY OF ART"
Pearson Prentice Hall comes out with the seventh edition of the art-history classic, H.W. Janson's History of Art: The Western Tradition, in February 2006. The new edition has been revised, the company says, to reflect a context-based rather than formalist discussion of style; it also adds a chapter on Islamic art and its relationship to Western art. Six scholars have collaborated on the new edition: Penelope Davies (ancient), David L. Simon (medieval), Walter B. Deny (Islamic), Ann Roberts (Renaissance), Frima Fox Hofrichter (Baroque and Rococo) and Joseph Jacobs (modern). The 1,200-page, profusely illustrated tome, once derided by feminists for omitting women altogether, represents "a great leap forward," according to NYU department of fine arts chair Kenneth E. Silver, and is "steeped in material culture and social-cultural history." Plus, Silver says, "it's jargon-free." The list price is $110.
RUSCHA NAMED MOCA TRUSTEE
The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, has added three new trustees to its board, among them artist Ed Ruscha, whose work has been included in eight exhibitions at the museum over the years. MOCA's other new trustees are Susan Epstein Gersh, an art patron and former director of the Susan Gersh Gallery, and David G. Johnson, a film and tv producer who is also chairman of the pro bono Public Counsel Law Center.
BECK'S FUTURES 2006 SHORTLIST
The Institute of Contemporary Art, London, and Beck's Bier have announced the 13 finalists for the Beck's Futures annual prize, which is designed to promote the work of promising young artists in the U.K. and comes with a £20,000 purse for the winner and £18,000 to be split among the others. The shortlist includes Blood 'n' Feathers (Jo Robertson & Lucy Stein), Pablo Bronstein, Stefan Brüggemann, Richard Hughes, Flávia Müller Medeiros, Seb Patane, Olivia Plender, Simon Popper, Jamie Shovlin, Daniel Sinsel, Matt Stokes, Sue Tompkins and Bedwyr Williams.
This year, the exhibition opens simultaneously at the London ICA, Mar. 31-May 14, 2006, and at offsite venues sponsored by the CCA in Glasgow, Apr. 8-May 14, 2006, and the Arnolfini in Bristol, Apr. 14-May 14, 2006. What's more, the public gets to vote on the winner -- at the various venues or via the prize website, www.becksfutures.co.uk -- with the public vote given equal weight to those of the prize jurors: Jake and Dinos Chapman, Martin Creed, Cornelia Parker, Yinka Shonibare and Gillian Wearing.
The winner is announced on May 2, 2006. Previous recipients of the award are Roderick Buchanan (2000), Tim Stoner (2001), Toby Paterson (2002), Rosalind Nashashibi (2003), Saskia Olde Wolbers (2004) and Christina Mackie (2005).
SHORT MOVE FOR D'AMELIO TERRAS
D'Amelio Terras, opened in 1996 by Christopher D'Amelio and Lucien Terras, has moved to larger quarters -- on the ground floor of its current building at 525 West 22nd Street in Chelsea. The new space, which is being designed by Dan Wood and Amale Andraos from Work AC, is scheduled to open in spring 2006; an exhibition by Dario Robleto is scheduled for May.
JUAN DOE ILLUSTRATES X-MEN
Brooklyn artist Juan Doe has been commissioned by Marvel Comics to create the covers for a special-edition series of X-Men comics. Called "X-Men: The 198," the series -- written by David Hine and illustrated inside by Jim Muniz -- tells the story of Prof. Xavier's mutant superheroes imprisoned in a concentration camp by a paranoid government. In keeping with the dystopian political theme, Doe's cover art employs stark, jagged red, white and black imagery and draws on the dynamic forms of Soviet avant garde political posters in a way that "blurs the lines between the worlds of comics, propaganda, commercialism and fine art -- all for the cover price of a comic book," according to Doe's gallery, Williamsburg's Jack the Pelican.
Five original prints of the cover art, along with examples of Doe's earlier, satirical, comic-influenced prints, are on display at Jack the Pelican through Jan. 21 , 2006. A self-described "blue-collar artist" whose motto is "art for every tax bracket," Doe priced the art to be available to the comic-book collector -- $200 each -- and the works have been quickly snapped up. The premiere issue of "The 198" is on stands now, priced at $2.99. For more info, see www.juandoe.com.
"FACTORY GIRL" UPDATE
Shooting continues in Shreveport, La. -- standing in for Manhattan -- for Factory Girl, director George Hickenlooper's fictionalized biopic of Andy Warhol superstar Edie Sedgwick. The movie stars 24-year-old actress Sienna Miller in the title role, Guy Pearce as Andy Warhol and Hayden Christensen as a fictional character who bears a passing resemblance to Bob Dylan (who, the tabloids say, might sue if the movie suggested that he had romanced Sedgwick). Miller made paintings for the film "using her boobs as brushes," according to reports, and has hung the resulting artworks in her home. Factory Girl is expected to hit the theaters in September 2006.
Meanwhile, back in the real world, an exhibition of Warhol's photos and tv shows, organized by Anthony D'Offay, goes on view at Hauser & Wirth in London, Jan. 27-Mar. 11, 2006, and travels to Zwirner & Wirth in New York, opening late March. The exhibition, titled "Warhol's World" Photography and Television," features over 300 previously unseen photographs of celebrities, street people, drag queens and nightclubbers taken between 1976 and 1987. An accompanying 224-page book, with an introduction by Glenn O'Brien, is published by Steidl.
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