"For his gallery exhibition at Hallwalls, Kevin returns to Buffalo with what has become an Award-Winning film, Erie, and an exhibition of objects and materials from his films. Central to the exhibition is the billboard, installed for three weeks south of Buffalo along Route 20, depicting an African-American auto worker and advertising jobs in the industry. Both a work of public art and an intervention into our Rust Belt landscape, the installation in an unsettling and uncanny way shed light on the history of our community and the sense of loss and anxiety felt by Americans and Auto Workers last summer. An aspect of his HARP residency, he will continue his work with students from the Buffalo Academy of Visual and Performing Arts to realize the creation and exhibition of materials that reflect the themes of Erie, AMC, and Costars—the process of filmmaking, and the role of visual culture on the migration of African-Americans and thus the shaping of American communities." — Carolyn Tennant, Media Arts Curator, Hallwalls
Buffalo Rising asks John Massier, "What's with this year's theme?"
@ Sceno Art 293 Linwood...."There is no expectation that you stay for the entire duration. Come and go as you please between 5 and 9PM on Friday (July 30), Saturday (July 31) and Sunday (August 1)."
Squeaky Wheel presents The Great Disaster: Outdoor Animation Festival
"People United for Sustainable Housing (PUSH) is teaming up with The Urban Soccer Initiative (USI) to raise money in order to help further rehab at the Massachusetts Avenue Park. The fundraising event, An Evening of Art for the Park, will take place on August 20th and include a silent art auction. The funds raised will be used to build a multi-purpose playing field at the Massachusetts Avenue property. Could you possibly include something about this in your blog and/or pass this information along to other artists who may still be interested? I am still looking for art donations. To thank artists for their donation, they will receive two complimentary tickets to the event which will include beer, wine, music, snacks, and an overall good time :). Any artists interested should contact me directly- email@example.com, 716-604-6183."
"MiA Seeks Artists: Music is Art is seeking artists in all mediums to exhibit their work at the 2010 Music is Art Festival on September 11 at the Albright Knox Art Gallery grounds. Art must be original. Installation and live art proposals are also welcome. Send 2 low resolution (72dpi) images of your work to firstname.lastname@example.org for consideration. Please include your telephone number in the email. Take advantage of this rare opportunity to reach thousands of festival goers with your work while supporting an organization that makes a difference in the lives of thousands of young people."
"That he has reached rock bottom tells us nothing new about Gibson. He was the same talented, nasty, bigoted blowhard then that he is today. But his fall says a lot about the changes in our country over the past six years. We shouldn’t take those changes for granted. We should take stock — and celebrate. They are good news."
"But in a turnaround, curators and critics say this week’s exchange of artwork between Obama and Prime Minister David Cameron established new heights of greatness in meaningful diplomatic gift-giving."
"Hailed as a sign of renewed government transparency when they began airing last year, President Barack Obama's weekly video addresses have grown increasingly experimental in recent weeks, raising eyebrows nationwide."
"Such is the state of Iraq’s modern art collection, renamed the National Museum of Modern Art in 2006 yet still an institution that exists mostly as an idea. That it exists at all is owed largely to the efforts of a group of officials, curators and artists who have struggled through years of war to rebuild what was even under dictatorship a record of an artistic awakening that produced a century’s worth of painting and sculpture in modernist styles, borrowed from international movements but filtered through Iraqi and Arabic sensibilities."
"That leaves the question of what to do with the films and tapes, which are now in the hands of the Larry Rivers Foundation and which Mr. Rivers’s younger daughter, Emma Tamburlini, wants turned over to her and her sister, Gwynne Rivers. Mr. Rivers died in 2002."
"It adds both the Beat Generation assemblage of the 1950s and works by lesser-known artists to the more canonical history of the seductive high-gloss Finish Fetish sculptures and reliefs and the environmental 'Light and Space' installation pieces that flourished in Los Angeles in the 1960s and ’70s"
"This new feminism is more about the opportunity to make choices than about any specific choice itself. And it’s freeing, this expansion of musical liberation into spaces visual as well as sonic, instinctual as well as intellectual, performed as well as lived."
"I always tried to make it short, make it sweet, and make it rhyme."
"Mr. Moura had a long connection to the great Brazilian composer Antonio Carlos Jobim. During the bossa nova boom of the late 1950s and early 1960s, Mr. Moura played with Jobim and other luminaries of the genre, among them Sergio Mendes."
"Mr. Neu’s subject, broadly speaking, was the effect of pop culture on the individual American psyche. His plays include 'The Floatones' (1995), about a singing quartet determined to teach the doctrine of self-help in music; 'Mondo Beyondo' (1997), about a television guru being threatened by a woman from his mysterious past; 'Undercurrent Incorporated' (1999) about unemployed spies who try to employ their skills among fashionistas and televangelists; and his most recent work, 'Gang of Seven' (2008), about market researchers with a collective delusion of power. Mr. Neu often performed in his own work."
For your Netflix queue
There are many worthwhile things to note about this excellent bit of television, a program absolutely worth watching if you've never seen it. Ostensibly, it is about the lives and loves of advertising men (and their women), centered around Sterling Cooper, a NYC ad agency in the first few years of the 1960s (the 3rd season concludes with the dissolution of one marriage AND the Kennedy assassination, so it's anybody's guess how things will shake out in Season 4, beginning this week). On a superficial level, you have that proto-modernist vibe to the sets and the clothing, you have that residue of 1950s-era optimism that fueled the beginning of the next decade, and you have all sorts of snappy patter and droll witticisms, flung about like so much ad copy.
That said, the show is also intimately about falseness and lies. It won't take you long to notice that all the male characters, employed in concocting and selling lies, are all to some degree living false lives. Kidding themselves, kidding their wives and girlfriends, and typically remaining remarkably clueless about their manufactured lives. The male characters in Mad Men are ALL fucking chuckleheads, especially the Supreme Grandmaster of Lies and Self-Delusion, Don Draper, played with extraordinary arrogance AND subtlety by Jon Hamm. Hamm plays Draper as a man who sometimes seems on the verge of self-awareness but is trapped by his own adolescent tendencies. By the middle of the second season, I was getting a little tired of Draper boinking every female that crossed his path as though he were Captain Kirk spewing his seed across the galaxy. But have no fear, comeuppance is waiting in the wings.
Despite the title of the show, the female characters are by far the most interesting and are ultimately what kept me watching. The conflicted career girl, the busty secretary, the long-suffering wife who comes to understand things her husband has yet to comprehend. The predicament of the mad women underscores another really interesting thing about the show—where we might occasionally think, wouldn't it be great to have lived in the 50s or early 60s, you're constantly reminded that this might be true...unless you're a woman. Or black. Prejudice is fairly commonplace throughout the show and the cultural norms depicted are sometimes abhorrent when considered through the filter of our 21st century present, like the fiance who rapes his soon-to-be wife because...because he can. Mad men? Fucking asswipes is more like it. Still, highly recommended.
Something I listened to this week...
(1977) DAVID BOWIE • LOW
Diamond Dogs may still be my favorite Bowie album, not to mention Ziggy Stardust and Young Americans, but I have seriously been digging Bowie's Berlin period over the last year—The Lodger, Heroes, and this spectacular record, all three produced by Brian Eno. Low may be the "artiest" album Bowie ever recorded and unlike something like Ziggy Stardust—which is great, but really sounds rooted in those early 1970s glam years—Low would sound good if it were released today. Musically adventurous, it sometimes sound like a premonition of things very soon to come after it, particularly the work of Joy Division. As I've said of other albums over the months, this is one I can't bring myself to remove from my iPod.
A daydream is a meal at which images are eaten. Some of us are gourmets, some gourmands, and a good many take their images precooked out of a can and swallow them down whole, absent-mindedly, with little relish.
— WH Auden