New Rothko Discovery

My New Rothko

Untitled, Red, 1968, Peggy Guggenheim Collection

This might be the most disturbing painting I’ve ever seen and I can’t take my eyes off it. From what I gather, Rothko first painted the red series. It was all the passion and fury that red evokes. Before taking his own life, was the black; the eternal void. This was painted after the red, before the black.

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2013 in Music

In tune with the weather, we saw a super storm of fantastic music in 2013. We’re going to be listening to these albums for years to come. I can’t bring myself to put these in order because they mean so many things; they’re not meant to be ranked.

Here are my crème de la crème of 2013:

MUDDY:

Ok… there is one in another stratosphere: Possessed by Paul James. This entire album is a journey from the moment you hit play:
Hurricane (track 1) by Possessed by Paul James More

JAY Z’s Picasso Baby: A Performance Art Film

I love hip-hop in the summer. It’s hard not to break out into a groove to Blurred Lines. (Yes, I’m aware it’s pop, but it’s a who-cares-cause-it’s-GOOD song.) I’m reading ?uestlove’s book, “Mo Meta Blues” and it’s a joy to watch the trajectory of The Roots of music from his point-of-view. I’m finally beginning to understand Kanye’s new album, Yeezus, and it’s worth it. Plus, Jay-Z is knocking one out of the stratosphere once again with “Picasso Baby: A Performance Art Film” It pretty much sums up why I’m an art nerd. Early in hip-hop art, music, and dance were the trifecta that formed the lifestyle. Jay-Z was there for that and our tastes in art grew parallel. People say that art and hip-hop grew apart when art went all shi shi poo poo money and shut the door in hip-hop’s face. I disagree. Hip-hop grew just as greedy and bling hungry and closed the door on art’s face. As in most in-genre drama, both parties have egg on their face.

Jay-Z is king of the world right now and in the Biggie style of doing things, he brought Brooklyn with him. So if this new video that’s labeled a performance piece (which you would have had to be in that room for) educates the who’s who of whoville in creativity, I’m happy. Picasso Baby

Macklemore and Lewis: “Can’t Hold Us”

That’s what you get when Wu-Tang raised you.
Macklemore

This video is 110%. Over the top, stoopid budget, win-win fearless fun. It broke YouTube with 1.4 million plays in 24 hours. I bemoan a lot of the modern pop, hip-hop, and country that’s being played on radio and sausaged through media. This is when it all works.

Coca Crystal, TV Star

IfICantDanceIn late 70s and through the 80s and 90s, there was a television show on local NYC Public Access called “The Coca Crystal Show“. Coca is my mother’s best friend, and she took me under her wing by appointing me cameraman for the show. By the power of YouTube, I get to watch one of the best shows on television again. More

Website Review: Possessed by Paul James

With a Possessed by Paul James song, the soul is where the song begins; soul is where it is built from.”  – Saving Country Music

Recently, Possessed by Paul James unveiled his new website. The photo was taken at Muddy Roots 2011 during a set so powerful, the winds came and shook the entire tent.

And there’s an EPK. Nothing is cooler than an electronic press kit. He talks of community as we’re all over this. We’re the filmmakers, the audience, the interviewer, the trucker hat, and the t-shirt.

Five stars!

Molly Gene One Whoaman Band: Waitin’

I can’t think of a better way to introduce someone who doesn’t know about Molly Gene other than this video. It was filmed by my friend, Nick Lindsay, and he has captured the hurricane that is her performance. Muddy Roots friends of ours are in the photo collage. I love it.

Jay-Z Opens Brooklyn

The first song I liked by Jay-Z was “Hard Knock Life (Ghetto Anthem)” in 1998. As an urchin who grew up with the Broadway soundtrack to Annie on cassette tape, it immediately became my personal theme song. I also remember when Hot 97 was playing The Takeover like a broken record to hype the Nas beef. There is no arguing with me over poorly sampling Jim Morrison.

I think every genre has its masters. Jay-Z came from one of the country’s most dangerous neighborhoods; grew from artist to executive, and still does his art. He’s married to Beyoncé, and is a father for the first time. He is such a great success story. More

Caitlin Rose: Piledriver Waltz

I keep coming back to this video. It’s so pretty and so perfect; a great example to showcase our genre. And, as usual, Triggerman nails it in his review.
Enjoy:

Possessed by Paul James

Milk Products Media, who did such fantastic work with the Charlie Louvin documentary, Still Rattlin’ the Devil’s Cage (which, by the power of KickStarter, I am a Producer of) brings to us new greatness. They created a short film to the song “We Welcome You Home” by Possessed by Paul James. It’s beautiful. The man is a Shaman, or some kind of spiritually gifted soul who heals us through his music. And this is the video: (watch it full screen)

Being Singular Plural at the Guggenheim

Being Singular Plural offers visitors the unique opportunity to encounter recent and new film, video, and sound-based works by seven of the most innovative and visionary contemporary artists, filmmakers, and media practitioners living and working in India today: Shumona Goel, Shai Heredia, Sonal Jain, Vikram Joglekar, Amar Kanwar, Mriganka Madhukaillya, and Kabir Mohanty. The works included in this presentation reveal the quiet principles of practice, process, and perception, while being grounded in a vital social consciousness. This timely and discourse-defining exhibition is oriented toward coproducing new work, facilitating research, and assembling a community of practitioners.

My favorite was the room with an adult sandbox in the middle. It had different sized rocks, leaves and dirt. You take off your shoes and walk through while listening to your feet touch them via speakers above your head and microphones on the border of the box. It’s like walking along a rocky beach without having to travel. Loved it!

Whitney Biennial 2012

Whitney Museum of American ArtThis year’s Whitney Biennial is … meh. The best part of it was my artist date, Katelan Foisy. We walked in and she said “I want my work to be in The Whitney Museum of American Art” and by the end of the opening, it IS! Girl’s got skills.

There are some pieces that are cool. I really like the organ and some paintings, but overall I get the same feeling I do with American music right now. There is lots of great things happening underground, but they don’t make it to the big time.

Pina

Quite possibly the most beautiful film I’ve ever seen in my entire life:

David Smith: Cubes and Anarchy

Nothing makes me happier than when art meets geometry. These sculptures are fantastic. They’re stark and playful at the same time. He’s like Picasso in the form of sculpture. It shouldn’t work but it does and he welds them together intensely. With an electric disc grinder, he polished these strokes and weaves of reflective surfaces in fleeting, chaotic motions.  It’s beautiful.

In short, it’s hard to take the full measure of these sculptures and even harder to make the connection between geometry and labor, cubes and anarchy. For that you’ll have to look to the catalog. Its essays stress Smith’s blue-collar credentials, reminding us that he was the son of an engineer and great-grandson of a blacksmith; that he worked as a telephone lineman, a riveter in a Studebaker automobile factory, and a welder at the American Locomotive Company; that he was a proud union member and remained one, even after his art career had taken off. More

Sherrie Levine: Mayhem

The invitation to The Whitney Museum of American Art opening had an image of a clear crystal skull against a white and gray background. Sherrie Levine’s “Mayhem” had me from the start. But nothing close to mayhem occurs in this exhibition. Over all it is disappointingly sedate, resembling a tastefully appointed art boutique full of fastidious, expensive-looking objects lightly dusted with irony. I’d like to think that Ms. Levine is a better artist than this, but I’m not sure. Whatever life her art has mustered in the past seems to have been mostly left at the door. (NY Times) There are pieces that I love though. The skulls transfixed me and the crystal newborns are mesmerizingly beautiful. More

Lucinda Williams’s “Copenhagen”

Love this.

I Miss Terry Noel

I called Rudy (his soulmate) the other night to check-in and within no time we were both sobbing in an endless stage of mourning. It’s been three years since he passed and I just don’t think I’ll ever get over it. No contest, he was the absolute coolest person I’ve ever met. I was camera woman for the Coca Crystal TV Show and he came on to promote his new art show, “Life, Love, Death, and Elvis”. I was in my Jim Morrison is God stage, and he told me he was roommates with Jim in California. I was sold. More

Beats, Rhymes and Life: My Review

 The long awaited, much anticipated documentary about the hip-hop group A Tribe Called Quest opened last night and I had the pleasure of seeing it with a bunch of fans in the East Village. There’s been much drama these past few months over the release that made me nervous that this was going to be a hip-hop group gone Jerry Springer over infighting. And yes, there are the kind of fights that a group that’s been together for 20 years would have, but that’s not what the movie’s about. It’s a love story between us (the fans and other musicians) and them. More

Decoded by Jay-Z

It took hip-hop an entire year to draw breath and now I’m being blinded by the lights of Jay-Z, Beyonce & Kanye. Looking through my music collection, I realize I didn’t buy much hip-hop this year. Then in a bolt of press releases, Kanye and Jay-Z are dropping records and Beyonce has a huge TV special Thanksgiving night. Jay-Z is doing a re-release with a few new tunes and Rolling Stone gave Kanye’s new one five stars. If I still respected RS, I would be impressed. And there’s a Jay-Z book.

Jay-Z’s last album, The Blueprint III, blew my doors off. I hadn’t been the level of a fan with him where I had opinions about entire albums. I liked songs here and there. At work, we tried to focus on a favorite and would just keep bringing up lyrics or hooks or concepts. I heard it everywhere. A party didn’t happen without a spin of Empire State of Mind and when he sang it at the opening Yankee game of the World Series, everyone knew the lyrics. Now that he’s on my radar, I’m finding out all sorts of great info. The guy is a media genius. He’s worth gazillions of dollars and he did it DIY. This book is a glimpse into all that. More

Charlie Louvin Benefit

Fifty years later, and he’s still rattlin’ the Devil’s cage. Charlie Louvin can walk through a crowded mall and not attract attention. But it shouldn’t be that way. Because that humble 83-year-old musician in the cowboy hat and jeans is a true American hero. Because 50 years ago, he recorded an album with his brother that shook up the music business. And the life he lived thereafter was pretty radical, too. That album, a gospel collection titled “Satan is Real” offered an honest look at a taboo subject, particularly for the times. The tracks on the album included “Are you afraid to die?” and “Satan’s Jeweled Crown.” More

Franz Xaver Messerschmidt 1736–1783: From Neoclassicism to Expressionism

At the Neue Galerie beginning tomorrow.

OK, so here’s the deal with this guy: He was a gifted sculptor in Vienna when Mozart was composing. Then his mind began to go off and he lost his shi-shi poo-poo clientele. Even while descending into insanity, he continued to sculpt. He would pinch himself to make his face contort and then sculpt it.

I recommend this exhibition as the work is so good, it needs to be seen up close. And if you haven’t been to the Neue Galerie yet, the space alone is breathtaking.

Messerschmidt made his mark at first in Vienna, where he enjoyed a successful career, including several royal commissions. Working in a neoclassical vein, Messerschmidt produced some of the most important sculptures of the eighteenth century. He presented the individual features of his models in a way “true to nature,” in keeping with their age and without idealizing them. No other sculptor in Vienna at the time was similarly uncompromising when producing portraits. More

Website Review: Rachel Brooke

I should probably start out by saying I worship Rachel Brooke. Her voice is perfection, her lyrics dark. I think she’s a great example of DIY. Her 2008 demo is so rough you can hear the push of the stop button. I think it adds to the charm. The music is so good, I put the whole thing on repeat.

In her tour announcement (woo!), she sent out this web address: www.rachelbrookemusic.com It’s beautiful. The music doesn’t stop no matter where you’re surfing on the site. There’s a lot of great information presented so nicely.

My only snag is there are no individual page addresses. I’m not sure if that’s a Flash thing or what. I’d like to email my friend the tour schedule and must tell her to go to the site, then find the categories on top and click on the 4th one from the left, “Patience” (hahah!).

Rest in Peace Tuli Kupferberg

My Godmother hosted a talk show on a Manhattan Public TV station and I was a camera operator. I was in my early 20s and knew nothing of art and the only anarchy I was interested in was the metal in my headphones. Coca Crystal, TV Star introduced me to her scene. I met so many amazing and gifted artists and one of my favorites was “NYC citizen emeritus, a man who was a Beat, a hippie, a Fug, and a goddamned troublemaker, the blessedly strange Tuli Kupferberg“. (a great fan site of the show is here). He would read poetry and they would talk hippie politics while smoking pot and railing against the injustices of the system. More

Sam Mendes Directs iPhone4 FaceTime Commercial

oh I am so getting one

Thanks AnnieColbert!

Banksy!

New film about Banksy: “Exit Through the Gift Shop”

 

 

I Heart Henry

In the freezing rain and one of the worst blizzards to hit our area in forever (according to the news), I went to see Henry Rollins do his spoken work at the Fillmore. I love this guy. He is 110% Do It Yourself in his business and life. Since his start as the front man for Black Flag, he’s taken music to new heights and remained a fan and critic throughout. My favorites are his books and performances of his readings. He is intelligent, well traveled and highly opinionated. He does lots of good deeds for the USO and causes he believes in. He’ll go through hell and back for his fans and we will slay a dragon for him. If you want to know the life and soul of one of America’s greatest musicians, read and see Henry. He pours himself out onto the pages with such naked openness. He gives you his ALL and then more.

And he signed my book!

Best. Commercial. Ever.

Thank you Amber!

Whitney Biennial 2010

You gotta go! Yeah. You do.

MoMA

I haven’t been to the MoMA since I was knee-high to a taxi wheel. Now I want to live there. We could only physically and mentally take in about 5 hours worth. I’m glad we saw Monet’s Water Lilies first. Get the free headphones and listen to the story of how he painted as he cultivated his gardens. It almost made me weep at the beauty of it. I dazed into the layering of his works until I was lost in the poppies. And the Tim Burton exhibit! How awesome and fun! And there are a million other pieces and artists that are worth contemplation. Or not.

Roni Horn aka Roni Horn @ The Whitney

I love this show! Roni is dark and brilliant and ambidextrous. Some of my favorites are the mischievously appealing red ant farm, the River Thames pictures with notations and the clowns. More

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