What’s Cookin at the Art21 Blog: A Weekly Index

"Singing in the Rain", (film still from 1952 film of the same name), SOURCE: www.imgartists.com

"Singin' in the Rain" (film still from 1952 film of the same name), SOURCE:www.imgartists.com

  • “I am so happy right now.” That is the last line from Nina Schwansee‘s video on the art of Amy Fischer. Whether she reciting Fischers infamous monologues pertaining to art as life,  playing her own version of a sort name game by posing as the mulit-aspected K-A-T-E(s), producing a commercial and edited outtakes in advertisement of the values of the nuclear family, love, weddings of a unique creation, horses and (of course pizza),  Schwanssee’s work plays with the seemingly timeless clichés of a woman’s place in society and relationship to the power of her own representation but with nostalgic flair for the ’90’s. Check out this artist’s profile posted by Kevin McGary.
  • “Problematise,” “brings attention to,” “radical” — this is the sound of art talking to itself. Ben Street in his letter Letter from London: Ethic Minority questions why it is that we are not really supposed to talk about the ‘ethical and moral dimensions’ of contemporary art. Discussions pertaining to controversy surrounding contemporary art or art works  often do not speak about ethics directly but take any  (supposed) abrasive qualities of the work to be in fact intrinsic framework of the artwork at hand. Is this just a different form of the “get out of jail free card?” Ben starts off this post with a helpful quote from the forever quotable Oscar Wilde: “There is no such thing as a moral or an immoral book. Books are well written or badly written. That is all.”
  • Is that a young child with a cigarette? Sally Mann’s provocative photography of her children get me every time. The Family, The Land is the first museum exhibition in Switzerland devoted to the work of Season 1 artist Sally Mann. For more of what’s happening with Art21 artists around the globe, check out the Weekly Round-up.
  • Vroom, vroom, here we go folks! Joe Fusaro, in his weekly column TEACHING WITH CONTEMPORARY ART  is Test Driving the New Season 5 Educator’s Guide: John Baldessari and Juxtoposition. Students will be asked to work with partners to research and collect images (fine art reproductions, advertisements, posters, etc.) that send specific messages through juxtaposition. This sounds like fun!
  • WE WANT FILM! Director of Production at Art21,  Nick Ravich has been quite busy these past weeks  helping to create new exclusive videos, shooting the preparation and rehearsals for William Kentridge’s Nose production at the Metropolitan Opera, and in general getting ready for Art21’s Season Six.  Ravich gives us the scoop on what’s been happening in the world of documentary screenings. Pass the popcorn please!
  • Have you ever been an assistant before? For whom, and what were you doing? Check out this VIDEO EXCLUSIVE JULIE MEHRETU | STUDIO ASSISTANTS (Episode #097) Filmed in her Berlin studio, a group of Julie Mehretu’s assistants — Sarah Rentz, Damien Young, Erika Fortner and Harmony Murphy — discuss how they each bring different areas of expertise to the process of making paintings, from fine art backgrounds in printmaking and illustration to furniture polishing techniques and administrative skills.
  • MEOWTWEET. Jonathan Munar interviews Ryan Catbird of Catbird Records in this post PACKAGING A MUSIC EXPERIENCE. Ryan Catbird has commanded a silent influence on the independent music scene since he began his blog, The Catbirdseat, in 2002. Ryan could possibly be credited for bringing bands such as Destroyer, Beirut, Frightened Rabbit, Pete and the Pirates closer to the public spotlight. Anyone who follows his blog would probably agree: Ryan Catbird has an honest, sincere, and genuine passion for music, with no pretense attached whatsoever. Which is why Ryan would probably never credit himself for “breaking” a band…and also why you would expect him to do more than just write about music…
  • Juicing the Equilibrium is a series of talks that solicits thinkers from outside the art world to apply their own readings and methodologies to the infinitely complicated matter of the art market. Essentially, how can an artist actively be both cognizant and critical of market forces? Kevin McGary Reports from New York City.