Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Art: Ask For More

Has anyone else seen the commercials advertising "ART" ? I just saw it run on MSNBC and it looked like the commercials where they advertise "beef" and "milk". At the end of the commercial a black screen appeared with "ART: ASK FOR MORE" and there was a donnation to americans for the arts. Weird.

Moving to LA

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Check out Metro Times story on 5 Detroit artists who move to LA.

My favorite quote:

"As for Los Angeles gallery scene, he shows his Detroit colors by not mincing words: "The work I've seen is so horrible. I can't even look at it. It makes me sick." He says the art ranges from superficial to intellectual and conceptual, whereas Detroit's is personal and emotional "it has a lot of soul."

Here's the proof!

Here is the evidence!....a  farwell letter Revolution mailed to it's visitors and clients. 

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It states, "We envisioned the gallery continuing for many, many years.  Life, however, presents changes. It is time for Revolution to close."  They go on to thank the many artists, curators, writers/editors to review exhibitions, dealers, assistants, interns, and staff.  A very somber letter of gratefulness to the Detroit community. 

Revolution will host it's farwell exhibition "Cheers" Sept. 10 - Oct. 1.  "Cheers" will include the work of many artists, several whom Revolution has represented over the years.  Please be sure to attend the opening reception Friday, Sept. 9, 6-9pm.  The letter also notes that now is the time to acquire a work of art from Revolution.  They still have many pieces in inventory and also selected books and catalogs on sale.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Art 21: Season 3

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Good news...PBS will be running season 3 of the Art 21 series - Art in the Twenty-First Century. This unique four-hour documentary series premieres across four Friday nights Fall 2005: September 16, 23, 30, and October 7 at 10 PM (EST)check local listings. Artists for Season Three are Laylah Ali, Ida Applebroog, Cai Guo-Qiang, Ellen Gallagher, Arturo Herrera, Oliver Herring, Roni Horn, Teresa Hubbard/Alexander Birchler, Mike Kelley, Josiah McElheny, Matthew Ritchie, Susan Rothenberg, Jessica Stockholder, Hiroshi Sugimoto, Richard Tuttle, Fred Wilson, and Krzysztof Wodiczko.

Seattle art scene

As written in the current Art In America Magazine, Seattle's art scene is growing by the day!  If you are at all interested in Seattle the spead is quite extensive.  I liked this image of Seattle based artist Alden Mason

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I especially like it because of the title: Waltzing Elephant Blues.  I tried to find the elephants but had no luck. Maybe it is like one of those "magic eye" paintings?

Detroit in NY TImes

Detroit made the NY Times travel section! It is funny that they mention a daytime attraction as visiting the old train station! They speak positively about Detroit and use careful descriptive words when describing our abandon buildings like:
"Washington Boulevard and Michigan Avenue, once the city's grandest hotel, hulks like a wounded Goliath. Most dramatic is the former Michigan Central Depot...its 18 blown-out floors looming against the sky, its railroad station interior looking like an abandoned Roman settlement."
They also go on to say, "Photos by urban spelunkers can be seen at and" hahhaha "spelunkers"! And to sum up: Detroit is great for music and watering holes!


Big thanks to Modern Art Note - Tyler Green's modern and contemporary art blog for adding me to the blog roll! I now am a link on the left side for Detroit art based blogs and also was included in a post for blogs to check out - specifically my post on Cecily Brown. I am ecstatic to be mentioned in such a well know credible art journal because it seems like yesterday that I started this silly blog. OK, not silly at all because Detroit is now more than ever in need of some help in the art department and anything at all - just keeping everyone informed is important!

Monday, August 29, 2005

Don't quit your day job

Oh, work!  For most artists you have to have a day job to support yourself.  Although I still think there is something scary and wonderful to committing full-time to art making.  Day jobs make art making hard but not impossible. 

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Be sure to read this article posted on artnet. If gives some good assurance that working a day job isn't so bad...just remember for you artists...don't let it take over (which is easier said than done)!

Moonlight Sonata
For many artists, a day job is not just a way of keeping body and soul together-it also feeds and sustains their creative work
By Barbara Pollack

Sunday, August 28, 2005

another magazine's art coverage

Radar, another magazine maybe you wouldn't normally pick up ( my source seems to get a lot of free magazines that I flip through) has a big feature article on art collecting and the current art market.  The headline reads: Scenes from a Mall - At overheated art fairs in Basel, NY, and Miami, collectors are shelling out millions for works that range from odd to obscene. But how long can the party go on?  by: anthony haden-guest.

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It is funny because this article seems to contradict everything that is going on in Detroit.  I sums up to say  that art in NY is selling like hot cakes and art fairs are basically selling out of art. Contemporary galleries in SoHo alone have increase from 80 to now almost 300 in the last twenty-five years!  And if you think it is all old master's work like Picasso or Pollock you are wrong.  That art is already almost non-existent to get a hold of and it is new emerging artists that are being snatched up.  Why aren't we all in NY then?? Let me quote this line:

"A global boom in museum building has meant that the world's supply of available masterpieces is dwindling....So most speculative energies are focused on younger artists, and sizable sums are bing put up....These days the targeted artists are getting younger and younger.  This increasingly means that the work of budding artists is up at auction just a few years after it has left the studios."

So in conclusion...umm....any ideas for Detroit? Anybody?  How can we get art to sell of the walls here?  How about this advertising:



Saturday, August 27, 2005

101up opening tonight

Tonight is the opening of "The Sixth Show" at The 101up Gallery.
4470 Second Ave, Detroit, MI 48201

DETROIT (August 27, 2005) The 101up Gallery presents 'The Sixth Show" featuring the drawings of Erin Somerville, Rachelle Guenther, Elizabeth L.Isakson, Kylie Lockwood, Ryan Csaszar, and Carl Oxley. The opening reception is Saturday, August 27, 2005 from 6:00 p.m. until midnight, and the show runs until September 23. Entertainment provided by Rob Young on violin and mandolin. Located at 4470 Second Avenue in Midtown Detroit, the 101up Gallery has been up and running since February 2005.

What makes a 'drawing?" Is it pencil, pen, or pastel? Or is it the age-old line? 'The Sixth Show" presents answers in the form of six artists' work. Erin Somerville uses charcoal on huge plaster slabs to depict everyday objects in rough, white space. Rachelle Guenther's stylus is her glaze laid down on ceramic tiles to make a line nonetheless drawn. Elizabeth L. Isakson uses pastel on paper to create dark, sun-setting cityscapes with very little line. Kylie Lockwood uses paint on paper to capture the images of baby bird and cat ghosts. Ryan Csaszar uses brushed ink on paper to create romantic and gestural figures live. Carl Oxley uses paint marker on canvas to make simple, fun, line-driven characters. Owners Greg Frederick and Mark Sengbusch havesome drawings to show off as well.

Cecily Brown

To my surprise in the recent issue of Best Life Magazine, probably not a typical magazine that one might pick up and expect art coverage, is an article called: 10 Artists Every Man Should Know (Find out who among today's art-world superstars are built to last. Plus, how to become a collector. By James Frey).  You don't have to be a dude to read this spread though.  I actually thought that the art knowledge was pretty acurate to be in a men's magazine...sometimes art info is watered down to the basics but this author knows his contemporary art.  One of the artists featured is Cecily Brown.  I fist saw her work at the Whitney Biennale a little over a year ago.  She is a great abstract-figurative expressionist painter. Be sure to check out her work.
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Thursday, August 25, 2005


Are you ready for the juicy details of the DAM panel discussion that took place today?  Detroit's oldest running gallery is on shaky ground and is in desperate need of restructuring.  Although, there are specific issues that are to blame with DAM slow decline, the lagging Michigan economy and lack of art enthusiasm still sits at the top of the list of culprits.  Yes, DAM has problems but look at other galleries.  Revolution is closing. Others have already closed. There is a buzz with new spaces downtown, all sharing a lot of numbers in common (555, 4731, and 101up) but collectors and avid art seers haven't felt at ease with these new spaces.  Trust is key and if galleries continue on like unstable parents to artists and collectors no one will benefit or ever feel comfortable spending money or showing.

As I sat down in the basement level of the Detroit Historical Museum, the discussion felt more like a first day back at school.  Marilyn Weaton, who sits on the Detroit Art Council and also runs a strategic planning business, was brought onboard with DAM to assess the situation and provide the DAM board with statistical data to help determine what should be done.  Wheaton, very organized composed a numbered list of questions that lead the discussion in a precise, prompt way of straight to the point dialogue. 

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Points of concern were the questionable uniqueness of DAM's mission, and the quality of exhibitions, staff and special events and educational programs.  Others in attendance included Sergio DiGuisti, John Cynar, and other established artists and teachers of Detroit.  Being the runt of the group I still spoke up and agreed with others that Detroit is in need of more galleries.  Michigan has a number of art institutions but has few galleries for graduating students to show at.  It was also agreed that DAM is in not only need of a new managing director, but also a larger staff to include an exhibition director and a fundraising director.  With cutbacks and art funding at a low, this makes it difficult to hire a staff when there simply isn't enough money to go around.

Again this brings me back to the sad point: if there is no money how do galleries turn things around?  Well, it seems that it doesn't necessarily take money to put a show on but it takes a group of devoted individuals to do so.  I found the meeting very beneficial because it shows that the Detroit art community will band together to stop another gallery from being put pasture.  Let's just hope that the root problem can be solved and there will soon be enough money to go back into the arts.

Oh, no...not Revolution!

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Just when I was starting to think that the art scene in Detroit was starting to come alive, my spirits have been crushed!!  Revolution Gallery will be CLOSING it's doors sometime late this fall.  No joke, Revolution hasn't been able to keep afloat in this brutal economy.  With DAM now contemplating staying alive too....I wonder what is to come for the Detroit art community?  Where will artists show?  This isn't good.  Anybody got any ideas besides moving to NY or LA? 

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

DAM! the cover of Metro Times!

Well, look what made the cover of Metro Times!

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This is really a great story of the history and current debate of the future of DAM.  Great job to Rebecca Mazzei arts writer at Metro Times!  Everyone make sure to read this!  I will also be attending the discussion meeting and can hopefully fill everyone in about what is to come for DAM.

i love america

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Picasso on Costco!!!! what?
The wholesale retailer is selling an original drawing by Pablo Picasso for $129,999.99

The story from CNN goes on to say-

(NEW YORK (CNN/Money) - Along with household appliances and hardware, Costco is making a name for itself in the world of fine art. The largest wholesale club operator in the U.S. is currently selling an original crayon on paper drawing by Pablo Picasso for $129,999.99 on its Web site......)

What is happening to America?  Will we one day do all our shopping at stores like CostCo and Walmart - including art buying?  Will all our goods be made in China? Well, if you are in the mood for art shopping here is the site to buy yourself a Picasso, Miro, or Chagall. I know I am being a bit sarcastic but really this is quite depressing knowing where the art market could be going.  So not only should you support small American businesses but also your local galleries and local artists.   I think I just heard the national anthem playing- hahaha!

Artist's work removed because of stinky sausage

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Now there's a headline you don't normally hear!  Read the story here.

I want your feedback...

Just a little reminder to stay posted because tomorrow I attend a crucial meeting to help determine the fate of The Detroit Artist Market (DAM). Since the loss of Aaron Timlin things have gone downhill and mean while Mary Harrison (formerly of C-pop) has been filling in. I think the problem with DAM is that it doesn't keep it's members informed of upcoming shows to enter and also I noticed towards the end of Timlin's run there that it seemed to be the same group of artists showing. I think that DAM needs an organized director that knows contemporary art and knows detroit. They have to be able to get collectors to notice DAM again and keep people interested in DAM. Artists need a place to show contemporary art and DAM is a great place for that. DAM should function like an a contemporary museum space.

So now I ask you - to add comments on what needs to happen to DAM. That way I can bring them up with the forum tomorrow morning! Thank you!

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

What's new at CAID

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It is almost that time.  The leaves start to fall and the temperature drops along with our cheery summer spirit that is crushed by the long, gray winter.  On a brighter note, galleries will be up and running showing their best art in the fall.  One place to keep your eyes on is CAID.  They are having a two part biennial featuring almost every detroit artist.  The only parameters to the show is that the pieces are limited to  8 1/2 x 11 size.  Also, CAID is launching a part of their website that features images/bio/resumes of detroit artists.  A nice link to have if you are a detroit artist to direct people to view your work.  Keep up the good work Aaron!

2005 Actual Size Biennial, Vol. 1
Sept 10 - Oct 23, 2005
2005 Actual Size Biennial, Vol. 2
Nov 5 - Dec 18, 2005
A biennial exhibition featuring works in all media from over 100 Detroit based artists.  Curator, Aaron Timlin

Art in Interior Design

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Pick up a the new issue of Interior Design Magazine if you haven't yet.  This issue is packed with fine art related stories and really cool design ideas that look more like installations than bedrooms and living spaces.  There is a great article on artist Andrea Zittle who recently was in the "Whitney Biennial" and is making a name for herself in New York.  The magazine is worth flipping through to look at an article on a PR launch for Volkswagen's Fox that involved 21 international illustrators, graphic designers, and urban artists that transformed a hotel in Copenhagen into an artistic installation.  Wouldn't it be amazing if Detroit could involve the new development downtown with local artists?? It would be great exposure for Detroit artists and also a inexpensive way to get cutting edge art/design in a new buildings. Hey, it is just an idea.

Saturday, August 20, 2005

fall clothing shopping starts...

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T. Kelly Mason at 1301PE gallery in CA

Thursday, August 18, 2005

fine art of car graphics

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Best car name ever! Welcome to the dream cruise week....get ready to inhale the fumes!

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Call for entries all sculptors


 A partnership between the
City of Birmingham Public Arts Board and the Cultural Council of Birmingham/Bloomfield

CityScapes is an outdoor sculpture program which solicits professional sculptors to lend their work for temporary display in public areas within the City of Birmingham


Program links:

CityScapes Call for Entries

Art Application Form (required with submission)

Map of selected sites for display

Faina Lerman

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Last call to see artwork by Faina Lerman at 101up Gallery.  Show ends this Friday.


Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Mural unveiling

Jefferson East Business Association partners w/ Summer In The City and The 101up Gallery

'Community Garden and Mural"


Mural unveiling: Friday August 19, 2005 12:30 PM - 4:00 PM

14313 East Jefferson Avenue @ Chalmers

 The Jefferson East Business Association (JEBA) and Summer in the City are proud to announce an unprecedented collision of art, community service and neighborhood development taking place on Detroit's east side.  Summer in the City has teamed up with the Jefferson East Business Association and artists from throughout Detroit to create a unique and ambitious art park.


The effort has brought together hundreds of volunteers from Detroit and the suburbs to turn a vacant lot the site of a former crack house into a point of pride for the neighborhood.  Where there was once stray barbed wire, broken glass and overgrown weeds, now sits a walking path and community garden in the shadow of a remarkable mural.

 The mural, measuring 50 feet wide by 18 feet tall and located prominently at the corner Jefferson and Chalmers, brings together for the first time the creative talents of some of Detroit's most up-and-coming artists.  Neighborhood artists including Phil Cierpial (known for the mural at the nearby Chalmers Building) and artists from Detroit-based, 101up Gallery (Mark Sengbusch, Greg Frederick, Chad P. Hunt, John Hicks, and Carl Oxley) have contributed their eclectic designs to create an imaginative landscape of promise and possibility.


The mural will be unveiled at a community barbeque at 12:30pm, this Friday, August 19.


Summer in the City was founded in 2002 to improve and expand the volunteer experience in metro Detroit by making community service work accessible, effective, and fun.  Summer in the City, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, coordinates its projects and works in partnership with 15 neighborhood groups throughout Detroit.  Since the first season, over 700 volunteers have contributed some 15,000 hours of community service to strengthen Detroit as a city and Southeast Michigan as a region.

Monday, August 15, 2005

When shit hits the fan...or this case moves north

Ruling opens rural areas for developers
Private sewage systems means more waterfront property, but critics see increased urban sprawl.
-- New home buyers will soon have more opportunities to live near lakes, streams and nature preserves, but some community leaders say the court case that makes it easier for developers to build in rural areas weakens their control over urban sprawl.

Very this may prove my point that everyone will be living even farther north in Michigan and Detroit will turn into prairie again.

In the news....

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Shrinking Detroit has 12,000 abandoned homes is the headline in the yahoo news!  Someone else also agrees with my idea to turn Detroit into farmland!  It is the natural cycle of the city: Detroit reaches it's height and becomes one of the biggest cities in the country, deteriorates and crumbles into the earth, where then it turns back into open field where it began.  People continue to move north and bulldoze fields while a new kind of urban countryside is growing downtown.  Maybe one of these days I will settle down, get a ranch with some horses in has always been a dream of mine!


Sunday, August 14, 2005

Master of Graffiti

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NYtimes reports on a Williamsburg artist Ellen Harvey who creates her own masterpiece style of "graffiti art".

NYtimes....Between the summer of 1999 and the spring of 2001 Ms. Harvey embarked on a little folly. Mixing the goals of city beautification advocates and outlaw graffiti artists, she planted 40 small oval paintings of trees, mountains and streams, evoking 18th- and 19th-century painters like Albert Bierstadt and Caspar David Friedrich, on the 20th-century New York landscape. She put them on places that were already marked by graffiti artists: "I wondered what it would be like - at a time when everyone was expressing themselves in a codified aesthetic that people see as being aggressive - to make something incredibly small and very pretty."

another cardboard artist

As posted on New Art, Chris Gilmore uses cardboard as his medium to create the perfect surprisingly non-functional sculptures.  One may think that it would be the same artist as the cardboard helicopter at Susanne Hilberry, but that is Shannon Goff.  I wonder how many other deceiving cardboard artists there are out there?

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These cardboard creations remind me when I had to use recycled, bio-degradable products to make something old, new again.  Although, this may be on a different level than my cardboard detergent box bird feeder from the 5th grade? 
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I think I may know a few scooter fans who would love this!
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Shannon Goff at Susanne Hilberry.  I will yell at you one last time urging you to go to the show if you haven't made it yet!

4731 Fashion

Arriving "fashionably late" is how the A-lister's make a grand entrance to be gawked at.  It was only fitting that the three day fashion runway shows were also running "fashionable late"!  Spectators sat in rows on the top floor of the humid 4731 fanning themselves with programs (last day oriental fans) and listening to thumping techno beats (last night Kenny G?) while waiting an extra half hour the first two nights and an hour the last night!  The sticky wait was worth the minor annoyance to see student, independent, and big name designers like Betsey Johnson!  It doesn't happen often in Detroit that fashion enthusiasts can attend a runway show.  This was the second big fashion event that 4731 has hosted and hopefully the word will spread to encourage more designers in Detroit to keep creating.

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Bestsey Johnson obviously stole the show as the last models skipped down the runway in these fun, poofy, party dresses! 
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Also to my suprise, Miss Johnson herself showed up to bow in the end!
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It is hard to see in the picture, but this model is wearing "sleeves of tattoos". It tricked me because I first thought the model had full arm tattoos but it was only a see through flesh colored fabric with tattoo patterns printed onto it.  Very cool for those who want to look tough but don't want to forever alter their body!  The skirt also had a skull and cross bones right on the front "area". Nice!
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Some models were more daring than others!  I must say that the models for the most part the last night were professional while earlier shows offered a variety of body types and experience.
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Yes, umm..bathing suites too.  Why do designers make teeny tiny bottoms that reveal everything? These models were not bashful at all!

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