Friday, June 23, 2006

Liquid Jelly: Installing Matthew Barney at SFMOMA

Matthew Barney sweeps up at SFMOMA

There is an amusing article in today's San Francisco Chronicle about the installation of Matthew Barney's "Drawing Restraint" exhibition at SFMOMA- Petroleum Jelly, Barney dressed as Gen. Douglas MacArthur, Tennessee trucker Jim McKinney, future Bjork sightings. This exhibit, which opens today, is going to be fun.

Matthew Barney's "Drawing Restraint" Exhibition has its own comment space on the web: "Drawing Restraint:What's Your Opinion?"

Trucker Jim McKinney with coffeee and pastry watches his tankload of petroleum jelly ooze forth at SFMOMA

Matthew Barney Podcast:

"Drawing Restraint:Podcast"

Podcaster at SFMOMA'S Chuck Close Exhibition

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Los Angeles Film Festival Opens Today

Max Beckmann
"Film Studio"
25 5/8 x 37 5/8 in. (65.1 x 95.6 cm) oil on canvas 1933
Saint Louis Art Museum

The Los Angeles Film Festival opens today and runs until July 2nd. The screenings will be held in venues throughout Westwood.

Star Wars empresario George Lucas acts as Guest Director this year. Lucas has this to say about independent film, "Throughout my life, I have been amazed and inspired by films that transport me to new lands .... The experience of discovering these new cultures, new stories and new filmmakers is exhilarating and rejuvenating."

As Guest Director, George Lucas has elected to screen three films:

Akira Kurosawa's "Seven Samurai"
Stanley Kubrick's "Dr. Strangelove"
Jean-Luc Godard's "Masculine Feminine"

Poolside chats will be held during the festival at the W Hotel. Anjelica Huston and Sally Kellerman will talk about photography with photographers Michael Childers and John Stoddart on Wednesday, June 28th at 7 p.m. ($15 at the door)

Conversations about film, art and music will be held at the Hammer Museum. (At least I hope they talk about art while at the Hammer.)

Danger Mouse opened up the festival last week at the Hammer. My thoughts on that conversation will appear soon.

L.A. Film Festival

Friday, June 09, 2006

Rosetsu's Elephant

Nagasawa Rosetsu
"Elephant and Children"
ink on paper c. 1794
Asian Art Museum, San Francisco

I recently wrote on the extraordinary ink on paper technique of the 18th century Japanese artist Nagasawa Rosetsu. Newly on view at the Asian Art Museum in San Francisco is Rosetsu's "Elephant and Children". This painting combines a daring composition with rich and varied brush techniques. The Asian Art Museum has determined that Rosetsu "depicted the elephant's huge body, large ears, trunk, and legs with minimal strokes using a flat brush, afterward using a round brush quickly but carefully to fill in details such as the children."

Rosetsu's paintings are witty, at times charming, but usually contain a hint of mystery or even dread. Rosetsu "is said to have had a volatile temperament, and his life ended under mysterious circumstances, possibly murder or suicide."

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Kent Twitchell's "Ed Ruscha Monument" Painted Over

"Ed Ruscha Monument"
Kent Twitchell
1978-1987 Acrylic

"(The Ed Ruscha mural) has always been such a popular piece in the art world and in Los Angeles. I had no idea it was in danger in any way," he said. "It was sort of my 'Mona Lisa'; I worked on it for nine years."
-Kent Twitchell

"Ed Ruscha Monument"
Kent Twitchell
(painted over - June 2, 2006)

Ed Ruscha in a brooding Firestarter pose. Do they really want to mess with this man's portrait?

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Ursprache & Weltschmerz

Katharine Close, an eighth-grader at the H.W. Mountz School in Spring Lake, New Jersey, becomes the first girl since 1999 to win the national spelling bee.

After spelling "ursprache" correctly, Katharine Close stepped back from the microphone and put her hands to her mouth upon being declared the winner. "I'm just in shock," Katharine said. Asked what she'll remember most, she said: "Probably just hearing 'ursprache,' which is a parent language."

The word "weltzschmerz", which we all should reflect upon as it means sadness over evil in the world, tripped up the second place finisher - Finola Mei Hwa Hackett, a 14-year-old Canadian.