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Stories of this month
In her book Radical Museology, Claire Bishop states, “the contemporary becomes less a question of periodization or discourse than a method or practice, potentially applicable to all historical periods.” Bishop further asserts that we now need to develop this term and expand our understanding of it. Just as Salvador Dalí’s melting watches, in his celebrated 1931 work The Persistence of Memory, the linear interpretation of time is meaningless in discussions of what is “contemporary,” as the past merges into the present, becoming a part of it. Time never stops, and in actuality, there is no set time for something to be “contemporary.” We are all drifting through the flow of time, and the state of what “contemporary” is continuously modifies.
by Amy Gahyun Lee
"Phillips’ show, What You Do When You Don’t Go Outside, at Harper’s Apartment follows a similar “fact vs. fiction” theme, with artworks like Sex Part of Exhibition From a Photo Taken of Me and Cristine (2019), depicting him and his wife mid-sex act. The painting is quite obviously based off of the artist’s real life, but if there were any doubt, Phillips helpfully underscores its meaning with his informative title. Fiction comes into play equally in other works, as in Horror Part of the Exhibition (2019), consisting of a shadowy masked figure holding a large knife, standing at the top of a staircase staring down at the viewer menacingly-- a stock scene from many American horror movies. The artist seamlessly combines his two skill sets of writing and painting in The Greatest Art is to Endure (2019), a painting of a note tacked to a wall with the same poetic, hopeful inscription as the work’s title."
by Nina Blumberg
"Esplund said that when we encounter art objects (whether paintings, sculptures, totems, masks, crucifixes, or contemporary assemblages), we should approach each artwork with childlike curiosity; that we should treat each work of art as a functional object that has something important to communicate; that we should engage with it as we would in a “one-on-one” encounter with a living thing. “Yes,” Esplund said, “great art speaks to you at the highest level; but it also speaks to you at the entry level, too. That’s what makes it a great work of art. It draws you in at every level, no matter where or how you come to it. Unless you’re totally shutting down to it, art has the power to draw you in.”"
by Angie Phrasavath
Since last September, Derek Weisberg has been using a rent-free, non-living studio space awarded by the Sharpe-Walentas Studio Program in Brooklyn, New York. His studio, like that of a stage where we can see faces of a variety of people, is packed with his past and recent series of artworks assembled with ceramics, stoneware, wood plaster, and other found objects, as well as tools, equipment, basic images, and materials which have had a major impact on his sculpture practice.
by Amy Gahyun Lee
The New York Historical Society’s exhibitions Black Citizenship in the Age of Jim Crow (September 7, 2018 - March 3, 2019) and Betye Saar: Keepin’ It Clean (on view through May 27, 2019) were in active conversation with each other when viewed together. When I went to see these exhibitions on a cold Friday evening in January, I expected to see works from Saar’s washboard series and to learn more about a dark period in US history. What I left with instead was an even deeper appreciation for Saar and for the many brave women and men that came before her to make her work possible.
by Alexandria Deters
The messages, conveyed through countless symbols in their artworks, perhaps voice their concerns with their country and reflect their hopes for the better future. We always have rights to hope for the better tomorrow.
by Eric Yoon
Immersive Studio Visit (VR)