Engineer, Agitator, Constructor: The Artist Reinvented Exhibition at the MoMA

Engineer, Agitator, Constructor: The Artist Reinvented at MoMa. On view through April 10, 2021

Things I loved about this exhibit:

It was interesting to see the works of artists who promoted more utopian, democratic schools of thinking and then went onto become fascists.

I loved seeing the works of Swiss graphic designer Max Bill, which I love, in person.

Loved studying the reigning types and typography of these artists in regions of Germany, Poland, Latvia, etc. in the period between WWI and WWII.

The exhibition showcased the works of many influencers of or from the Bauhaus school– for that alone, this exhibition is worth seeing!

Poster for exhibition of furniture by Wohnbedarf et Le Corbusier’s Maison de Verre (Immeuble Clarté (1933), letterpress by Max Bill

I loved the story behind this artwork so much. The photographed man was involved in the design of some project involving pool, but was not permitted to utilize-enter the pool because he was Jewish. His friend creates this collage piece with him in pool. The work is an impressive act of protest– and one that signals the dignity of the subject:

Another collage I liked, this one the size of a palm:

I appreciate how much the exhibit focused on showing the final versions and the maquettes of magazine pages and spreads.

A maquette for Plan for Socialist Offensive magazine spread, for 30 Days, no. 11 (1929) by Latvian Gustav Klutsis

As someone is largely self-taught-teaching-herself art, these maquettes and the finished magazines offer a fascinating view into process.

Plan for Socialist Offensive, in 30 days, no. 11 (1929) by Latvian Gustav Klutsis

I loved the design of these postcards:

Postcard for the exhibition Dommerstock Housing Estate: The Functional Dwelling (1929) by German artist Kurt Schwitters

Poster Designs:

Of lesser importance, but one that provided an opportunity for me to learn more about architecture (I’ve recently developed an interest in learning more about architecture as an acquaintance of mine is one).

Untitled (study for building) (1925), Ink, colored ink, gouache, and pencil on paper by German artist Fritz Schleifer

November 2021 Vlog

Pieces I particularly enjoyed this month at the MoMA:


Shuzo Azuchi Gulliver’s Cinematic Illumination, Floor 4

Retrospective of French anarchist Feliz Feneon.

Making:

I’ve recently discovered that embroidering is a very meditative activity for me.

I’ve been working on this for a couple church services.

I believe the doodling also helps me to focus on sermons a little more too.

For my birthday this year, my older sister asked me what I wanted to do with her to celebrate. She wanted to take me out to dinner, but I asked her if we could just grab dinner to eat casually and quickly; I told her I just wanted to paint with her and make art, and so we did :). She managed to persuade me to agree to making this a painting session of making one of Joan Miro’s famed paintings, The Birth of the World.

This is hers. I made mine off of my favorite colorway which are the 3 primary colors, and I added a boa constrictor digesting the elephant which is another “favorite” of mine from Antoine de Saint-Exupéry’s Le Petit Prince.

That was a great evening for me.

I really appreciated having a moment to rest, being in a relatively quiet environment, and being able to do something mindlessly, unambitiously, and completely for my pleasure–my pleasure alone.

Just another packaging proto using a lot of makeshift materials:

MoMA’s Creativity Lab, Donald Judd, and a Little Tomato Farm Out Front of the Guggenheim

At one point did it enter our heads that we can no longer play with arts and crafts… create.. that art making is an activity best left for kids? Getting back our creativity as adults… waking up dry bones…. a hope I have for the city of New York.

“Make use of the empty space, child”

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“Make use of the empty space, child,” (Donald Judd inspired thoughts in my head)

Always leaving inspired by the rich histories of typography

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New MoMA: Things I Love That Can Be Easily Missed

Stellar David Zwirner Exhibits, and Art I Like, January 2020

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Family Portrait, Florine Stettheimer, 1933

 

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20200125_133045 Multichannel video installations to expose and explore alternate histories

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Burnt Umber & Ultramarine, Yun Hyeongkun (윤형근), 1989 

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The stoicity of nature / Minimalism

 

Very emotive figurative works by Noah Davis:

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Mary Jane, Noah Davis, 2008 / Striking textures 

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Bad Boy for Life, Noah Davis, 2007

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Woman’s face coloring reminds me of style of Lucian Freud

 

“I found my drive to diversify permanent collections. They are the beating heart of the art world. If you can change the collection, you can change the public story of art.” – Helen Molesworth

 

 

Day at the Museum: Rijksmuseum

I really attempted to make the most of my short days here and I ambitiously set out to the Rijksmuseum to see as much art as I could. I believe I really did get through almost all the art excluding the Middle East room, as exhausting and unbelievable as that sounds!

I was laser focused.

Below are the pieces that really struck me one way or another for various reasons:

 

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Portrait of Hortense de Beauharnais, Queen of Holland, Anne Louis Girodet Trioson, 1805-1809, oil on canvas

Hortense caught my eye for her beauty, but also because of her relation to Napolean. I read up on her husband recently (step son of Napolean, son of Napolean’s first wife, hence my familiarity with Beauharnais his name), and the house of Beauharnais caught my attention as I read the placard to see who this painting’s beautiful subject was. Apparently she did not like the environment of the Netherlands, so even as a ruler there, she spent most of her time in court in Paris. huh.

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Sibylla Erythrea, Maarten van Heemskerck, 1564, oil on pastel

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Sibylla Erythrea, Maarten van Heemskerck, 1564, oil on pastel

Sibylla caught my eye for her beauty, and for her having been recorded in classic antiquity as having given prophesy about Jesus coming. This is news to me. I am excited to read more on it.

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Woman Reading a Letter, Johannes Vermeer, 1663, oil on canvas

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Children Eating a Pie, Bartolomé Esteban Murillo, 1675-1680, pastel

This looks so mischievous, and it made me smile. And so it’s here. Being nostalgic for the things we used to do as kids is good. to a degree. hopefully we can all continue growing up with it kept instead of looking back to mourn what’s good that’s been lost.

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A Rembrandt x Diego Valesquez special exhibition was up, and exhausted as I was by the end of my main museum roundabout, I could not miss this. It ended up being a little questionable. Not the works themselves, but the way they were curated, described, and the way the curators developed the narrative [dare I say it!] was poor, misleading, and unclear– like me during my high school days trying to write essays just to meet deadlines and pass with absolutely Zero intention of actually desiring to convey a point. That is really what it felt like.

The lamb (symbolizing Christ) was great though.

Other Rembrandt pieces were technically lovely, and I felt honored that I was able to see more of his pieces in person, but I’m not adding them here because they didn’t move me. Otherwise that would be an act of compulsion influenced by prestige, which is no bueno.

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This a scene depicting Bethsheba and David (in the castle peeking out of the squared piece) desiring after her. It’s a Bible scene (basically for anyone who does not read the Bible or does not remember, David fell in love with B, but she was already married to a guy that was under his rule (as king) so he sent the dude off in “war” (to be killed really) (and there goes another Bible story of how humans as great as kings make terrible, terrible mistakes)

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I loved this painting for its raw sensuality. It just jumped out at me and called me. Venus and her son is asking Adonis not to go. I love the way Adonis holds onto her lips tenderly like that, and that lovers’ gaze is real.

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Venus et Adonis, Ferdinand Bol, 1658, oil on canvas

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Satyr and Nymph, Gerard von Honthorst, 1623, oil on canvas

While this is definitely the more hedonistic counterpart to the former, I still find the scene very beautiful. Love, or love as it moves reveals itself in different forms and ways and meets different ends. While satyrs were mainly negatively characterized in tales of old, there is the wildness and freeness of them that I look to with positivity in part. I just love the play I saw. Even if it probably foreboded some very bad news bears between satyr and nymph (like when Pan chased after a nymph to the point she had to turn into reeds!).

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Lot and his Daughters, Hendrick Goltzius, 1616, oil on canvas

While this painting was technically rendered incredibly beautiful, the substance of it disturbed me very much. It recalls a Bible story of a time people were punished for their mistakes and so all the men were kaputed, except Lot. These are his daughters, who feared not being able to bear children, and so they got their father drunk and seduced him to bear. It conjures in me many thoughts too (like how sometimes, we’re *so* for getting to the end, we forget about the means that we’ve taken to get to the end).

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William II, Prince of Orange, and his Bride, Mary Stuart, Anthony van Dyck, 1641, oil on canvas

“The 14 year old boy is married with the 9 year old girl, and a kingdom is elevated.”

My thought ^ : basically opened a can of thoughts. So many ramifications to be unpacked

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Boy with a Drawing Book, Nicolas Bernard Lépicié, 1772, oil on canvas

This just makes me happy 🙂 And it reminds me of me, inside.

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Portrait of Rutger Jan Schimmelpenninck and his Family, Pierre Prud’hon, 1802-1802, oil on canvas

This reminds me of a family I would have liked to have had. Nuclear.

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Storage mirrors of the Netherlands

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Model by Johann Ernst Gotzowsky, 1750-1755, hard paste porcelain

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Ivory

 

 

Day at the Louvre

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Crosses – heads of pastoral staffs of bishops

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Incredible detail across every inch.

 

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Relic of the arm of a Catholic leader.

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Sevres

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Grandes Sevres Vase I’ve seen thus far.

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Musketeering lamp

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Fantastic Faucet for the homemade drink of my dreams.

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Another beautiful Sevres

Can A Negro Study The Law?: A powerful retrospective of Charles White’s contributions to social liberty.

Can A Negro Study Law in Texas 1946

Can A Negro Study The Law?, 1946

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Frederick Douglas (The Ghost of Frederick Douglas II)

Frederick Douglas (The Ghost of Frederick Douglas II

Harvest Talk 1953

Harvest Talk, 1953

Headlines 1944

Native Son No. 2 1942

Native Son No. 2 1942

Preacher 1952

The Preacher, 1952

 

Spiritual

Spiritual

The Children 1955

The Children, 1955

Untamed: Jean-Michel Basquiat at Fondation Louis Vuitton

Dos Cabezas, 1982 – Acrylic and stick on canvas mounted on wood supports – private collection

Grillo, 1984 – Acrylic, oil, paper collage, oil stick, and nails on wood – Fondation Louis Vuitton

Florence, 1983 – Acrylic and oil stick on canvas – private collection

Untitled, around 1984-85 – acrylic and paper collage on paper glued onto honeycomb board – private collection

Hollywood Africans in Front of the Chinese Theater with Footprints of Movie Stars, 1983 – acrylic and oil stick on canvas mounted on wood supports – estate of jean-michel basquiat

Slave Auction, 1982 – Crumpled paper collage, oil stick and acrylic on canvas – Centre Pompidou, Paris

 

Untitled (BlueAirplane), 1981 – Acrylic, spray paint, and oil stick on canvas – Collection Stephanie Seymour Brant

Constantin Brancusi,Vanguard Artist

Of Romania, Constantin Brancusi, born in 1876, sculpted, painted, and photographed throughout the duration of his artistic career. He is considered by some as the father of modern sculpture.

Brancusi worked primarily with 4 mediums in his sculpting practice: limestone, casted bronze, wood, and marble to construct highly symbolic forms of the things grounded by reality.

His works are true emblems of visual reduction.

On view at The Museum of Modern Art until February 18, 2019 although you won’t be missing out on much as I believe most if not all the works are part of MoMA’s private collection. 🙂

A bientôt!

Club 57: Film, Performance, and Art in the East Village, 1978–1983

Night So much experimentation and fun in the 70s and 80s, I wish I was a part of it:

 

 

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Customized Matchbooks for Club 57’s 1983 Matchbook Show

 

 

 

Complement these visuals with the 1967 track of ze Vegetables  by The Beach Boys.

PSA*** Let me just say MoMA’s current exhibits are amazing (Specifically, three). This is a good month to go. I won’t spoil it for you, but there are some new, reckoning art for you to see.

Running through April 1 at The Museum of Modern Art.

Complement these visuals with the 1967 track of ze Vegetables  by The Beach Boys.

Money Shot by Judith Bernstein

 

My friend Christine and I stopped by the Paul Kasmin Gallery yesterday to check out this LOUD art show, which represents the works of Judith Bernstein, a New York based artist, mainly known for her phallic symbol infused works and her ardent devotion to feminism.

Money Shot is a visual manifesto of some very explicit political commentary (truly, a no holds barred, lacking zero subtly situation). Asides from the strong messaging, the artist used fun and creative mediums like fluorescent paint and light for this exhibit to the delight of myself and the many other art goers that walked into the gallery (Exhibit A: it was fun to see anyone with hair lighter than brown with heads literally lit, and seeing men walk in with their stiff collared shirts noticing in surprise that the collars peeking out of their sweaters were brilliantly highlighted in spacey purple light).

Do I see a Darth Vadar, a skull, and a generic demon here or is it just me?

 

The Trinity Schlong

 

While this artist clearly shows her bias for the strong left, I believe this show is worth going to and seeing– regardless of one’s political affiliation, and preferably with an open mind.

It is worth mentioning and acknowledging the creative and intellectual risks this artist has made to voice out some very controversial and sensitive opinions, and the gallery that chose to represent her with this recent installation.

I applaud you, Paul Kasmin Gallery.

This show runs until March 03, 2018. @ 293 10th Ave., NY.

Art Finds at MoMA

Romanian visual artist Geta Brătescu

American visual artist Joan Jonas‘ riveting 3-D performance

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One of Louise Bourgeois’ smaller arachnoids, perched on the wall:

Part of her exhibition, Louise Bourgeois: An Unfolding Portrait, a showcase of 300 pieces, which is running until January 28, 2018.

 

 

Museum of Modern Art

Teiji Furuhashi on the Transience of Contemporary Love

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Figures moving like specters – Feiji Turuhashi adds an ultra-romantic lens to contemporary love through his video-projection installation: Lovers.

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Naked lovers run towards each other, passing each other and overlapping one another only to never actually touch.  Coupled with the displacing sound mix, it makes for a beautiful and stirring native scene.

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“How slim are the odds that one shall paint, another shall dance, whose unexpected orbits keep intersecting mine…” – Amy Uyematsu, Calculations

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On the Question of Seeing

Some weekends ago, I met up for lunch with Jee, a dear friend of mine and talented retail analyst and curator.  Having stuffed ourselves with the scrumptious food to be had over at Moma’s Cafe, we decided to partake in a much needed stroll over at MoMA’s permanent collections. Our promenade around MoMA’s floors was backed by the soft, intermittent patterings of female chatter– a soundtrack characteristic of a robust friendship such as ours. The program for the day revolved around the kinds of art we each liked and didn’t like.

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Got to see our favorite art together, Jee’s Chagall to my Magritte. Jee brought me to see this painting by Chagall. Marc Chagall was a French-Russian artist who was well regarded for masterfully synthesizing multiple art forms. This painting, I and the Village, boasts and imaginative and buoyant spirit though its bright color schemes and dream-like qualities. It’s said that the painting was meant to be a visual home for his memory of and relationship with the homeland he grew up in. I go back to my own memories of my childhood, and am content and grateful to feel things kindred to the ones here.

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I decided I wanted to emulate the painting’s spirit fully and be the horse– quickly remembered this is a public space and venerable museum– so I stopped.

I’ve always been fascinated by the individualities of seeing, how two people can regard the same object and come out with very different perceptions. So often do I come across a situation where one person finds something to be profoundly beautiful/good, while another comes to the polar opposite, yet equally certain conclusion for it (take this entire US election debacle, like how is that possible??! but the fact of the matter is, it is).

This conundrum is something I desire to understand on a deeper level:  What are the makeups that have constructed the way you and I presently see and react to the realities and the stimuli around us?

What are the recurring laws or patterns if any, that can help me to understand? Maybe a knowledge in perceptual psychology, neuroscience (Read this fascinating article on how political orientations are correlated with brain structure in young adults), and an aptitude for emotional intelligence would help, mais quoi d’autre?

I know that for me at least, art helps to explore this question further. In this practice of seeing, I am able to dig a little deeper into myself – my memories, my feelings, my hopes, my disappointments, & the thoughts and the hearts of the people in my circle. And in doing so, I find I understand life a little bit better.

I wonder what devices you rely on to see.

Happy Election Eve..

Bises,

Soo