Wednesday, August 7, 2013

An Artist's View on the Big Apple

Cityscapes are defined as an artist’s visual representation of the city in which they live and they are the subject of the new group show "In the City: Artists' Views of New York City" at Chelsea's George Billis Gallery.

24 artists are taking part in this show celebrating the City of New York in its multitude of atmospheric tones. Andrew Woodward depicts a bright and sunny landscape of skyscrapers while Richard Orient's work shows the soft gleam of lights on 42nds street. 

Lucy Reitzfeld, Twilight City
From realism to impressionism, created in acrylic oil or mixed media, the works present an ever changing view on New York, catching the notion that experiencing this city can be beautiful and glimmering as a star filled summer sky or gloomy and daunting as a shuttered corner store on a rainy evening . 

Nicholas Evans-Cato, Dragon, Oil on Linen

The cityscapes are mostly empty of any human presence letting the city and its architecture stand by themselves. Towering skyscrapers basked in soft autumn light, the mystical foggy shadows cast by the Brooklyn bridge, or the intricate decor of an Art Deco downtown building, visually capture the city's  ever changing spirit.

The exhibit features works of John Aquilino, Lisa Breslow, Derek Buckner, Nicholas Evans-Cato,David FeBland, Harvey Gordon, Todd Gordon, Hans Habeger, Kenny Harris, Frederick Hodder, Steven Katz, Elaine Komorowski, Rolland Kulla, David Leonard, Benat Iglesias Lopez, KellyAnn Monaghan, Elizabeth O'Reilly, Richard Orient, Lucy Reitzfeld, Ephraim Rubenstein, Paul Schulenberg, Christopher St. Leger, Franklin Tartaglione, Bennett Vadnais, and Andrew Woodward.

The show In the City: Artists' Views of New York City will be on view at George Billis Gallery until August 17. 

Andrew Woodward, The Columns

Nicholas Evans-Cato, Frond

Richard Orient, East 42nd Street

Andrew Woodward, Crysler Horizon

Benat Iglesias Lopez, Central Park; On My Way Back Home #2

David Leonard, Autumn in New York

Harvey Gordon, Open Doorway

Luis Perez, Broome Street Rainstorm

George Billis Gallery- NY
521 West 26th Street
New York, NY 10001

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Punk's Evolution from Chaos to Couture at the Met

Black leather, shiny studs, chains, safety pins - these are the words in the visual language of Punk. The current must-see exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Art "Punk- Chaos to Couture" examines how these symbols of revolt against the status quo have made their way from grungy underground clubs to couture catwalks.

The show traces back to the time of Punk's birth in the 1970 when Punk evolved from a subcultural phenomenon into a rebellious lifestyle movement, fueled by music, art and drugs.

Organized across 7 galleries, the exhibit showcasing footage of Punk icons like Pattie Smith, Sid Vicious and Blondie, and juxtaposing Punk's DIY aesthetic with pieces of the biggest names in contemporary high fashion.

Gallery View
Clothes for Heroes
Image © The Metropolitan Museum of Art 

Chaos to Couture is designed as a multimedia, multi sensory experience, combining artifacts, videos, music and soundscapes, including a replication of famed Punk mecca CBGB's bathroom.

Fashion designers today incorporate the very visual language that Punk has utilized to mock the uniformity of common fashion norms by ripping, embellishing and painting of clothes. Nowadays "designers continue to appropriate punk’s aesthetic vocabulary to capture its youthful rebelliousness and aggressive forcefulness", says the Costume Institute's curator Andrew Bolton.

The exhibition shows works of the fashion créme de la créme, including designers such as Miuccia Prada, Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana, John Galliano, Karl Lagerfeld, Helmut Lang, Riccardo Tisci, Gianni Versace and Alexander McQueen, just to name a few.

Punk: Chaos to Couture is organized by the Costume Institute of the Metropolitan Museum of Art and will be on view until August 14.

Gallery View
D.I.Y.: Hardware
Image © The Metropolitan Museum of Art 

25.Gallery View
Facsimile of CBGB bathroom, New York, 1975 Image © The Metropolitan Museum of Art 

Gallery View
D.I.Y.: Graffiti & Agitprop
Image © The Metropolitan Museum of Art 

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Tile by Tile - The +Pool Kickstarter Project

The long weekend and the 4th of July fireworks are behind us and on Monday morning it was time to get back to the grind. The hot, sweaty, smelly grind of New York City in the summer. I love the city, I really do, but these days of 99% humidity and what feels like 100 degrees really make me wish I would live in a city where pools aren't reserved for the rich or better yet, a place by the water so I could go for a quick swim during my lunch break or after work.

The thought is actually not that far fetched. After all, Manhattan IS an island, but if you ask any New Yorker, swimming in the filthy water of the rivers that surround New York's busiest borough is pretty much out of the question.

But there might be hope on the sunny horizon: The kickstarter project +POOL, launched by the three New York designers Archie Lee Coates IV, Jeffrey Franklin and Dong-Ping Wong, aims to provide a clean and safe way for the public to swim in New York City waters.


The +POOL will be tethered to the river bed which will allow it to raise and lower with the tides and waves

The plan is to basically build a giant strainer smack dab in the middle of the East River that filters the water and serves as a public pool at the same time.
"+ POOL started with a simple goal: instead of trying to clean the entire river, what if you started by just cleaning a small piece of it? And what if you could change how New Yorkers see their rivers, just by giving them a chance to swim in it?"
+ POOL is designed as four pools in one: a Kids' pool, Sports pool, Lap pool and Lounge pool.

"+ POOL is designed to filter the very river that it floats in through the walls of the pool, making it possible for New Yorkers to swim in clean river water for the first time in 100 years.  The layered filtration system incrementally removes bacteria and contaminants to ensure nothing but clean, swimmable water that meets both city and state standards. No chemicals, no additives, just natural river water."

Not only would the pool offer New Yorkers the chance of a refreshing escape from the summer heat, it would filter about half a million gallons of river water every single day. If that's not absolute genius than I don't know what is...

BUT there are only 3 more days to make this wonderfully crazy project happen. 250 000$ need to be pledged by Friday, July 12th and as of the time of this writing, the +Pool crew is still about 60 000$ short.
With your donation you will receive the right to engrave a tile with your name/ logo or whatever you want, starting at the manageable amount of just 25$.
And if that's not reason enough, you'll be sure to make a lot of sweaty New Yorker's very very happy.

You can learn more about the project on their website or on the +POOL kickstarter campaign page. 

Friday, June 28, 2013

Taking a Summer Break at Station Independent Projects

Summer is in full swing around here and with it comes heat and humidity to the urban canyons of the city. Personally, I'll be leaving New York on Monday to spend a few days at the beach in Cape May.  
But before I say goodbye to sweaty subway seats and melty Froyo, and hello to beach towels and Salt Water Taffy, I'll be getting myself in the mood with the new exhibition "Summer Break", opening today at Station Independent Project Gallery.

Works by Miles Ladin, Megan Cump, Matthew Oates, Beth Krebs and many others will be on view, depicting various interpretations of that special feeling of summer.
"Summer Break" will be up until August 4th.

Miles Ladin
Sun Stroke Stimulus #3 The Standard Hotel, Miami Beach

Megan Cump
Untitled, 2012

Beth Krebs

Ron Barron
Arabesque 1/5

Katherine Daniels
Polycephaly on Blue

Station Independent Projects

164 Suffolk Street
New York, NY 10002

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Illustrating the Moment - Esra Røise

It's the seemingly unimportant little moments, a sudden laugh, blowing bubble gum or a funny face that catch the attention of  Norwegian  Illustrator Esra Røise.

Røise draws her inspiration from the people around her and situation of everyday life as well as the randomness of snapshot photography "with their impulsiveness, bad cropping and weird angles". 

The fashion industry also plays an important role in her work as one can tell from her subjects that often include models like Lindsey Wixson or Kate Moss. 

Her work connects stunning drawings that burst with life with the reduced elegance of fashion illustration.  I really love the use of watercolor in her work, lending splashes of energy to the fine lines of her portraits. 

Røise's talent has already earned her an impressive list of clients that includes VOGUE, Nylon magazine, Wallpaper* and VICE, just to name a few. 

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Charlotte Ronson for Starbucks

This summer you can sip your latte in style from a ceramic cup illustrated by british designer Charlotte Ronson. Born in London and raised in New York, she has become one of the most thought after designers of womenswear and one of the leading young talents in the fashion industry.

Ronson is the newest member in an ever growing line-up of designers who have collaborated with Starbucks. Previously the high fashion label Rodarte designed an exclusice line of tumblers, sleeves and totes for the coffee giant.

Inspired by "lazy summers and just enjoying the sunshine" Ronson created a whimsical design that features her signature floral pattern.  Too bad this pretty mug only holds 12 oz, which doesn't really cut it when it comes to my morning coffee needs....
The limited edition ceramic tumbler will be available in stores in the US and Canada starting next Tuesday, June 25th.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Destination: NYC at the MoMA Store

I love museum stores. They are like mini versions of the actual museum that let you take home a piece of art at a slightly better price point then what it would cost you to, say, take home a Giacometti sculpture or a Dürer drawing. Most museum stores in the city go beyond Monet postcards and Klimt jewelry, they offer sophisticated pieces of design - furniture, lamps and all kind of household items.

The Museum of Modern Art Store's long running "Destination: Design" series has been featuring products from specific countries or cities, capturing their unique visual identity in a wide range of goods. This time, in it's eleventh edition, the MoMA finally turns to New York.
In collaboration with the International Contemporary Furniture Fair, the MoMA Design store launched Destination : NYC

The new collection features over 200 items by New York based designers, including jewelry, paper goods, furniture and home accessories. The collection is curated to represent all 5 New York City boroughs, Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island and the Bronx. All products are designed in New York City and manufactured in the United States.

From bicycle chain cufflinks to earrings with the silhouette of the lower Manhattan grid pattern or candles shaped like Bronx bodega water bottles, the collection presents a eclectic conglomeration of New York City icons.

Gold tones, graffiti styles and vintage typography are just a few of the design elements with which the MoMA celebrates Gotham culture.

"Destination: NYC – Made in the USA" will be available at the MoMA store and online until August 2013.