Monday, October 25, 2010
This weekend I repainted my background wall from blue to yellow and purged my studio of old rolled up mural prints, other people's artwork, a Nick Cave concert poster peeled off a wall in St. Petersburg, Russia. It was hard to see it all go, but my studio is tiny, and the situation had reached a pitch with me reaching for backdrops and almost getting hit on the head with a hammer or spray bottles. It was impossible to get something off the shelf without knocking something else over. Now it is a good place to be again, and I can look forward to working there. Here is a test from my shoot on Sunday.
Thursday, October 21, 2010
Last weekend I worked some more on one of these scenarios I've been trying out that require more than one model. This weekend I'm planning some nice quiet studio time with inanimate objects that can be moved around without apology.
I thought about this photo of mine recently when I was at the Letinsky lecture, and I saw my favorite shot of hers, one that contains a plate that appears almost to levitate. I would post it here, but I can't find it online.
Thursday, October 14, 2010
This image is from the series The Dog and the Wolf, after the Aesop's fable of the same name, but that also refers to the phrase L'heure entre chien et loup. This translates to "the hour between dog and wolf." This is the hour when dusk becomes night. This is a mysterious time when day and night exist together, when a dog is no longer a dog but not fully a wolf.
Going to the Laura Letinsky lecture at ICP last night was almost like a pilgrimage for me. Amazing just how different this lecture was from the Adam Fuss lecture. Letinsky's lecture left me more interested in the work than ever, which was good, especially after feeling slightly underwhelmed by her current show at Yancy Richardson. The beginning of Letinsky's 12 year project in still life began when she was in Germany, as a non-German speaker. During this time she felt she needed to turn more to visual language, as her ability to communicate with words was severely limited. This is telling, because her works can read like poems. Objects scattered deliberately like text on white, like an E. E. Cummings poem. Giorgio Morandi came up, and that was great. I also love his work.
I was not surprised to learn that Letinsky likes to cook. When she got her first studio, she solved the problem of what to photograph (she had previously always worked in her home) by picking up trash that she found on the way to the studio. This makes me think of her work as an archeology of modern life. For those who are interested, this lecture series at ICP is streaming live on every Wednesday night through December 15th.
Thursday, October 7, 2010
Highlights of the Adam Fuss lecture last night included a fantastic UFO photo shown by Fuss and the longest pregnant pause by a public speaker EVER. When Fuss showed the UFO photo, people laughed. He said "Ha Ha" with derision. People laughed again and the stone faced Fuss said "What's funny about that?"
I'm of two minds about this. Perhaps believing in UFO's could be a mark of authenticity- the artist's way of showing how crazy they are- a kind of pissing in the fireplace. On the other hand, maybe not. What we now know about the sheer scale of the cosmos can be a convincing argument for intelligent life from elsewhere. So maybe he is just up on his science.
Fuss answered his own question "What is art?" by saying that for him, it was a kind of mix of the above and below. Also that the artist is "trying to find the door." All of which made a lot of sense. In the Q&A period I asked for examples of painters he liked, after hearing his comment that he is more interested in painting than in photography. Jackson Pollack was foremost. However, what I really wanted to ask was why in his current exhibit at Cheim & Read the single photo of the vagina was on the floor. But I chickened out. Current show announcement above.