Sunday, 25 January 2009

Yohji Yamamoto

Fall 2009

This guy wandered on to the runway while picking up his morning paper and baguette (I guess they tend to do that in Italy). I really like Yamamoto because his collections are totally reflective of his personal style. He puts what he wears on the runway, which I respect in terms of creative expression.

Friday, 16 January 2009

Kim Simonsson

"white girl with tousled hair blows a big bubble of bubblegum made of silvered glass"

Nancy Margolis Gallery
523 West 25th Street, Chelsea

Thursday, 15 January 2009

Helmut Newton

I see Helmut Newton as the originator of art-porn or porn-chic (no, not Terry Richardson).
Christie's recently had an auction of a private collection with 16 photos by HN. Virtually all of them fetched a huge premium over their estimates. I guess that would make Helmut Newton way more profitable than the S&P 500

Bergstrøm over Paris went for an incredible 6 times what it was initally valued at:

And the priciest of the lot, Sie Kommen, Paris (Naked and Dressed) went for 60k more than the upper end of its estimate - a full 33%.

Other shots:

Central Park West

Tied-up Torso, Ramatuelle

Elsa Peretti in a 'Bunny Costume'

Christie's sale 2113 - Photographs from the collection of Gert Elfering

Monday, 12 January 2009

Lehmann Maupin

I recently visited the Lehmann Maupin Gallery on 201 Christie St. Even though it is a small space with a limited collection, it has some very cool work and represents well-known artists like Juergen Teller. I really liked Mr.'s 35-minute short film "Nobody Dies," which can be succinctly summarized as a sexually frustrated, older geek's attempt to bring anime out of animation. Well, what does that mean? I was going to elaborate, but Cool Hunting's description is pretty much on the money:
" ... about a group of adolescent Japanese girls who partake in a paintball riddled war game of capture-the-flag.

Carefully toeing the line between perversion and commentary, the film is a continuation of the artist's investigation into the Otaku subculture and its fetishization of kawaii, or cuteness. Roughly half the film documents the everyday lives of these young girls while the second act features the group costumed in neon camo-garb (also designed by Mr.) and taking their game a little too literally. Throughout the film, the camera lingers suggestively on the girls, like the eyes of a shut-in comic geek, making for an altogether uncomfortable viewing. Which is likely the point."

Shots of adolescent (looking) girls in tight-fitting neon costumery and sexualized situations left me feeling a little repulsed and slightly surreal (can you feel surreal?); but on the whole the film was very interesting.

Upstairs were Tracey Emin's neon words: "Her Soft Lips Touched mine And Every Thing Became Hard." I lingered thinking about what that meant to me. At first, 'hard' seemed to mean complicated, difficult, painful; but after a few minutes 'hard' felt grey, jagged, bleak, cracking like dried clay - I pictured kissing someone who turned into stone and crumbled as the world collapsed around me. I then strolled grey, debris-filled streets alone with a blank expression. It was very alarming. 

I also liked this painting:

Unfortunately I don't know the title or artist. Maybe I'll call the gallery to find out. To me it was like rubber-band man trying to break out of his plasticky, insanity-inducing, two-dimensional world - in other words: the life of a floundering, bourgeois, pseudo-intellectual philosophe in 21st century society.