NY ART BOOK FAIR BOWS IN CHELSEA
The second installment of Printed Matter’s annual NY Art Book Fair, Sept. 28-30, 2007, features over 120 exhibitors from around the world, ranging from major antiquarian dealers and book distributors to independent publishers and artists. The fair takes place at a dual-level, 20,000-square-foot space at 548 West 22nd Street (the former Dia Center bookstore). Admission is free.
The fair’s feature exhibition presents over 150 publications by Martin Kippenberger. Among the special events are book signings by Marilyn Minter and Tracey Moffat, a silkscreening performance by Brooklyn artist j. morrison, and a performance by Bec Stupak at the fair-closing party. For details, see www.nyartbookfair.com
Printed Matter is hosting a benefit gala for the fair, 6-9 pm, Thursday, Sept. 27. Tickets begin at $20, which gets you a multiple by artist David Shrigley. Higher-priced multiples by Josephine Meckseper ($150) and Ed Ruscha ($4,500) are also available.
MUSEUM FOR AFRICAN ART CONDOS
New York governor Eliot Spitzer is giving a helping hand to the struggling Museum for African Art in New York, which has been without a permanent home since 2002. Spitzer has committed $12 million in state funds towards building a new facility for the museum in Harlem, matching the $12 million in city funds that Michael Bloomberg pledged earlier this year [see "Artnet News," Feb. 8, 2007]. Spitzer’s move adds much-needed credibility to the scheme, which would house the museum in a new $80-million condo tower located at the northeast corner of Central Park. Billed as the first addition to the city’s Museum Mile in a half century, the project features three floors of museum and 16 stories of high-end condos.
An earlier, now-forgotten plan called for collaboration with Christopher Whittle, the deluded "public schools can turn a profit" visionary who has since sunk ignominiously out of sight. The current project represents a collaboration between the museum, now housed in facilities in Long Island City, and Brickman Associates, a real estate equity firm. The new building is designed by Robert A. M. Stern, and claims to offer unobstructed views from all 150 condo units. The art/luxury living complex is expected to open at the end of 2009.
FRANKEN HOSTS ENVIRO-AUCTION
Liberal funnyman Al Franken is hosting an art auction to benefit the environment on Oct. 5, 2007, at the Auditorium Theater of Roosevelt University in Chicago. On the block are 100 artist-designed globes -- oversized models of the planet, each five feet in diameter, with the continents in low relief -- envisioning different ways to save the Earth from environmental depredation. Among the participating artists are Romero Britto, Suzanne Caporael, Jim Dine, Mr. Imagination, Jaume Plensa and Stanley Tigerman, while an additional 54 "mini-globes" (classroom-sized) come from figures including Yayoi Kusama, rocker Sheryl Crow and Happy Gilmore actor Adam Sandler. The works have been displayed all summer along Chicago’s lakefront. The auction, which is conducted by Sotheby’s, hopes to raise money for environmental education, including the expansion of the Chicago Conservation Clubs in city’s public schools. Tickets are $75; for more info, see www.coolglobes.org
KLIMT MOVIE TO OPEN IN NYC
New York art lovers who are also fans of actor John Malkovich are in for a treat -- Chilean director Raul Ruiz’s long-awaited biopic of the life of Gustav Klimt is due to appear in the city for a limited run at the International Film Center (formerly known as the Waverly Theater) in Greenwich Village, beginning Oct. 17, 2007. Starring Malkovich as the celebrated Austrian Symbolist painter, the film -- billed as a "phantasmagoria" rather than a straight-ahead bio -- also stars Saffron Burrows as Klimt’s erotic muse Lea De Castro and Nikolai Kinski (son of Klaus) as Egon Schiele.
The movie has so far received extremely limited distribution, but its timing in New York is right -- the Neue Galerie presents "Gustav Klimt: The Ronald S. Lauder and Serge Sabarsky Collections," Oct. 18-June 30, 2008. As for the film itself, U.S. reviewers have given the dream-like narrative mixed to poor reviews (its Rotten Tomatoes average score is currently 22 percent). For more details, see www.klimtthemovie.net.
PURYEAR AT MOMA
Martin Puryear, the American sculptor known for elegant, abstract wood constructions, is getting the full retrospective treatment at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, Nov. 4, 2007-Jan. 14, 2008. Organized by John Elderfield, the show presents almost 50 works spanning Puryear’s entire career. The show is installed in the museum’s sixth-floor galleries as well as the second-floor atrium, where a new, as-yet-untitled work incorporating a sapling taken from the artist’s property in upstate New York will be on view.
HALBREICH TO MOMA
Artnet Magazine art critic Charlie Finch predicted it [see "Predictions for 2006," Jan. 20, 2006], the Museum of Modern Art officially denied it [see "Weekend Update," Sept. 11, 2007] and now it’s happened -- the Museum of Modern Art has hired former Walker Art Center director Kathy Halbreich to be associate director at the museum, a new position. She is to focus on contemporary art, and report directly to museum chief Glenn Lowry.
NINE SCRIPTS FROM A NATION AT WAR
Fans of political art should check out www.9scripts.info to see clips from 9 Scripts from a Nation at War, by Andrea Geyer, Sharon Hayes, Ashley Hunt, Katya Sander and David Thorne. The project, one of the highlights of the recent Documenta 12 in Kassel, is presented as a suite of videos each focusing on a staged performance by a character who represents one type in contemporary political discourse, a "citizen," "blogger," "correspondent," "veteran," "student," "actor," "interviewer," "lawyer," "detainee" and "source."
FEININGER CATALOGUE RAISONNÉ
New York dealer and Lyonel Feininger expert Achim Moeller plans to release the first of three volumes of the Catalogue Raisonné of Paintings by Lyonel Feininger, spanning the years 1907-18, in 2008. The catalogue endeavors to provide a written opinion on the authenticity of all extant works by the German-American modernist, providing each with a numbered certificate of authenticity. To request an authentication form, contact Moeller at the Lyonel Feininger Project LLC, 36 East 64th Street, New York, N.Y. 10065.
GENIUS GRANTS TO LOVELL, SNYDER
The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation has awarded its annual fellowships, popularly known as "genius grants," to 24 scientists, scholars and artists. Art-world winners included painters Whitfield Lovell and Joan Snyder, who receive tax-free fellowships totaling $500,000, paid over a five-year period. For a complete, illustrated list of the fellows, see www.macfound.org.
SMITHSONIAN AWARDS TO BALDESSARI, WEINBERG
The Smithsonian’s Archives of American Art awards its 2007 medal to artist John Baldessari at its annual benefit galain New York on Oct. 10, 2007. Metropolitan Museum of Art curator H. Barbara Weinberg receives the "Lawrence A. Fleischman Award for Scholarly Excellence in the Field of American Art History."
DESTE PRIZE TO ALAVANOU
Loukia Alavanou (b. 1979) has won the Deste Prize 2007, a €10,000 award earmarked for Greek artists and given out every two years by supercollector Dakis Joannou’s Deste Foundation in Athens.
NEW SPACE FOR SNYDER
New York art dealer Gary Snyder, who has previously had galleries in both Chelsea and midtown Manhattan, opens Gary Snyder / Project Space at 250 West 26th Street with a show dedicated to Washington Color School painter Thomas Downing on Oct. 4, 2007. The new 2,000-square-foot galleries are designed by Ashbahian Design. Snyder plans to focus on Hard-Edge Abstraction from 1955 to 1975.
MCGINNESS AT PACE PRINTS II
Pace Prints, long headquartered on the third floor at 32 East 57th Street, is opening a second space at 521 West 26th Street in Chelsea. The debut show features Ryan McGinness, Oct. 4-Nov. 6, 2007, who plans to transform the space into "a kaleidoscopic wonderland" with his wallpaper, silkscreens on paper, monoprints, three-dimensional multiple editions created using skateboards, porcelain-baked enamel on steel panels and metal sculptures.