Last one...

Another old update. Here are some reviews of two artsy related movies I attended at the Tribeca Film Festival. Hopefully they get distribution and they come to a town near you soon! Definitely worth checking out:

My first screening last night was The Universe of Keith Harring, a documentary about Harring's life and art. I've never been a huge fan of his work, and yet, it's hard to truly dislike his efforts. And, because I do appreciate what he did, I was highly disappointed that this wasn't a better film. It had the usual complaints that I have about bad documentaries--it jumped around the time frame too much (a clip from '88 and then bounce back to '83?) and there was not a straight and clear narrative. Plus, the filmmaker used this weird graphic element every time she introduced a new interview subject that got incredibly annoying after a while. On top of these things, the movie felt too long and I think I would've enjoyed it if it had been cleaned up a smidge and was a bit snappier. Also, I really wish they had covered more about how Harring developed his easily-recognizable style.

Besides all that, I really enjoyed seeing all the footage of Harring. There were plenty of clips of him painting -- whether working in the studio, guerrilla style chalking on a subway platform, or painting a large commissioned mural on the side of a building. Plus, there were many of the video pieces he did for art school (he attended SVA) and clips of shows he and his friends used to put on. One of the most interesting elements, though, was that Harring himself narrated much of the movie. He had been interviewed shortly before his death in order for someone to write a biography and the filmmaker obtained permission to use these videos in the film.

In general, Harring really seemed like a joyous person. He wanted to make people happy and created art that anyone and everyone could enjoy whether you were a child or an adult. Plus, I really appreciate the fact that despite pleads from art dealers and galleries to not paint so much (in order to drive up prices), Harring continued to paint and paint and PAINT. Paintings on canvas, murals, and he quite often drew on people's clothing or bodies. He definitely seemed to be in it for his true passion for creating and that is really magical.

Side note: Yoko Ono is adorable (I've always liked her art) and had some lovely things to say (even if they were "weird") and I thought it was a shame that some folks in the audience felt the need to snicker or giggle at them.

Afterward, I headed to a different theater to catch another documentary titled, Guest of Cindy Sherman. This was a much more fun film and the filmmaker, Paul H-O, was quite a character. The film started in the early '90s when Paul was working on a cable access TV show called Art Beat. He and his co-host would attend gallery openings in a very guerrilla style with their video cameras and ask the artists silly questions such as "What did you have for breakfast?" The show looks like it was a lot of fun. Eventually, they were at an opening for Cindy Sherman. Sherman is notorious for being a very private individual and she rarely gives interviews and it's rare you see a photograph of her that isn't one of her own self-portraits in costume. Paul headed over to her and, in rare form, Cindy actually allowed him to film her and talk to her and ask her questions. Many folks scratched their heads. This led to a series of private interview sessions where she allowed Paul to film her studio and workspace and he even filmed her during one of her photography sessions. Seeing her make herself up (she does all her own make-up and costumes) and do her own portrait was easily the gold of this film. It was really fascinating to watch her work.

Long story short, the reason she allowed Paul to film her eventually came out--it was obvious in all the tapes that these two were flirting. What followed was a 5 year relationship. The movie then continued to follow their life together and Cindy's various successes over the years whereas Paul stopped making Art Beat and failed at another project he tried to get together. He was finding himself more and more to just be Cindy's professional boyfriend. And, his personality was not the kind who would be happy to be second fiddle. This led to interesting interviews with folks such as Elton John's husband, who often found himself in the same boat. They'd be seated at different tables then their significant other at functions and pushed out of photograph opportunities. A lot of this led to the eventual downfall of the relationship. This also led to the title of the film, "Guest of Cindy Sherman," which was the place card Paul often faced at a table well-distanced from his girlfriend's. He no longer even had a name.

Overall, the magic of this movie really is getting to see a great deal of Cindy Sherman's work projected on the screen and the rare moments of a glimpse into her work and life. She is a surprisingly down-to-earth person. But, Paul's side-story is also fun and interesting. And, on top of the surface story, there is a great underlying story of how much the art world of NYC has changed in the past 15 years. When they were filming Art Beat in the early 90s, it was fun and arty and still had a lot of the 80s zaniness lingering, but it has since then turned into Big Business and it's very corporate and it's all about making money. Which is just really sad.

Cindy Sherman actually gave her approval to the final cut of the film, but has since distanced herself from it.

On a roll today...

Why I neglected to post these when they happened is beyond me. But here's a write up I did of the WACK! show at PS1. I also went to the Murakami exhibit at the Brooklyn Museum and very much enjoyed it. I can do without the handbags, but some of the installation rooms were amazing. And the animation / cartoons were...wow!

Here's the WACK! write-up:

I've somehow never been to PS1 and was glad to finally inspect the joint. It's a contemporary art museum located within an old public school (hence the name). The building itself is gorgeous and interesting with lots of odd nooks and stairwells. They also have a large courtyard which serves as the location for their summertime "warm-up" parties (again, which I have somehow never attended?).

The WACK! exhibit was really great although some pieces stood heads above others. I really enjoyed a lot of the collage work, the crochet room, and a lot of the photography projects. A lot of the pieces from the 60s or 70s still felt very contemporary even in the 00s. Upstairs, there was a second exhibit featuring the works of Olafur Eliasson. Eliasson's work is very scientific -- kaleidoscopes, structures, constructions, works in light and movement. It was pretty neat stuff. The most impressive being the large room which we entered and saw everyone laying on the floor. Confused, we looked up and were staring directly into our own eyes. A large circular mirror was above us. Which, was cool enough. Then we realized that it was rotating around. And finally, it was getting CLOSER! An odd feeling, but very neat.


Eliasson is up until June 30, but WACK! closes after next weekend. If you've got some free time, check this show out. It was definitely worth the trip.


OH...and also, I will be showing with the Antagonist Art Movement again next Thursday night in NYC in the basement of Niagra. New paintings will be unveiled! If you live in the vicinity, be sure to stop by! See the previous flyer below for more information (same deal, just new date!) or stayed tuned for more...!


Hi all! I have been lazzzzzy about updating this blog (which is just funny since I update my personal blog about umpteen times a week). Anyways, I just wanted to say thanks to everyone who's discovered me recently and has been posting about my art lately on their own blogs and such. I think it's been stemming from a mention on the Drawn! blog site. The mention came as a complete surprise to me and I only discovered it after receiving a number of emails from folks mentioning it. So, thank you for your kind words and I can't even begin to explain how flattered I feel that you folks are digging what I do.

Which, leads me to...what I do! I swears I have been painting. Cross my heart. But I've been slooooow going on updating the website. I plan on doing a major update soon. New works, revised site layout, etc. It's in the works. My personal life has just been insane the past few months (in very good ways!) and I've put art to the side for a bit. But it's been aside too long and I plan to put it back front and center starting .....now!

So, please stay tuned...new sights to see REALLY soon. And again, thank you. Please feel free to stop by the site anytime and drop a comment or email to say hello. I sincerely appreciate it.

(I apparently like to misspell foreign words)