Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Jeff Koons: most recent copyright infringement lawsuit

From Artnet:
Jeff Koons is being sued over use of a photo:

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Lots 'o' links to articles about Miami Art Basel 2015

Art Basel photos from The Daily Beast

ArtFCity has several articles:

ArtNews has a bunch on their site, too:

and let's not forget the NYTimes:


Thursday, December 3, 2015

Lots of Miami articles on Hyperallergic!

     The website, Hyperallergic, has several articles about work at the Miami Art Basel Fairs!


Art Basel/Miami article links 2015

Here we go! The first of many links to come about this year's Art Basel in Miami!
The Gallery Guy couldn't make it this year having just moved the family and we're up to our easels in boxes etc. Enjoy this ArtNet article and stay tuned!


Installation shot of Jimmy Durham at Peter Freeman, Inc. at Art Basel in Miami Beach, 2015.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Valeri Larko at Lyons Wier Gallery, NY

     I shall preface this by noting that Valeri Larko is an old friend, going back to 1990 when we met at an arts group I was starting (at the very first meeting actually) in Hoboken, NJ. Besides being a pal, she's a pretty darn good painter. So, bias duly noted and proclaimed, onto the blog post.

     Lyons Wier Gallery in NY has appeared more than once here on The Gallery Guy blog. They show excellent work, almost exclusively realistic painting (or "conceptual realism" as they describe it), and owner Michael Lyons Wier really hustles for his artists, both at the gallery and several art fairs. I've known him for a few years and purchased work there (an awesome Fahamu Pecou painting) so I was thrilled when I heard from Valeri that she would be exhibiting at the space.

     This falls into the Better-Late-Than-Never Dept, as The Gallery Guy and la familia were bogged down with the root canal sans anesthetic pleasure of moving, so this post is unfortunately after the show. However, there are plenty of photos here and on the gallery's website.

     Valeri is a plein air painter and made her bones doing landscapes of old industrial tanks and parks with a high degree of skill depicting the light and  color of those sites. She fearlessly trudges into mostly secluded and dicey locales. "All of my landscapes are painted on location. I spend hours roaming around an area until I find something that resonates with me. Once I do, I set up my easel and return to a site many times. A large painting can take up to two and a half months to complete. The process of painting on location over a long period of time is crucial to my working method because it allows me to form a deeper connection to a particular place through careful observation and personal interaction with the people I meet there."

     Larko grew up and lived in New Jersey for most of her life and the majority of her early work's sites are in the Garden State. Having moved to New Rochelle, NY, pieces from the last few years were mainly done in Brooklyn, the Bronx, and Queens. Junkyards have been a favored subject presenting a diversity of objects to paint, often festooned with graffiti tags.

     Because of the constantly changing environments she paints in, there's a  potential for compositional disaster when working on a single piece for weeks at a time. While painting one site, she arrived to find a large boat deposited in the area she was painting and wasn't sure if it worked in the piece. After a short time, it was covered with graffiti and she ended up adding it to the painting. "Top Dollar" below.

     "Urban documentation" work such as this also functions as a time capsule of our changing times. They can capture signage, fonts, language, architecture, and economics. Many sites she's painted are gone, bulldozed and built over or waiting for a developer.
     Valeri Larko's work has the added benefits of a good eye, a good hand, focus, perseverance, and a love of her subject matter. When chatting about each other's  work she often referred to her paintings as "my tanks" in an almost maternal tone. That is precisely what sets her work apart from others painting similar subject matter.

"Location Location Location," new paintings by Valeri Larko was on display in October 2015 
at Lyons Wier Gallery, 542 W. 24th Street, NYC. 
To view more works from the show go to the gallery's website.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Brett Amory at Jonathan LeVine Gallery

     This is a weird analogy, but here goes. I like me a good prosciutto and mutz hero now and then. I know what I'm getting, but it's a bit different depending on which deli I go to. That's how I felt going to Brett Amory's third show at Jonathan LeVine Gallery; anticipation to see his work and knowing basically what I'm going to get, yet each show is different. And I always leave feeling satiated and thinking about the next one.

     Speaking of food, first up is this painting of Katz's Deli. On the corner of Houston and Ludlow in New York's lower east side and a place I frequented when I lived there and still do (by the way, if you ever go there, do yourself a favor and get the pastrami on rye. Nuff said.) All the paintings in this show are from the east village and lower east side.

     Now here comes the twist I alluded to earlier. Some of these places are gone, like CBGBs. What Amory does is create a haunting illusion, a spectre of the past establishment by painting it in color and the rest of the painting in black and white. Simple, yet creative and very effective. You know the feeling when you are with someone and you point out where you used to live or went to school, and they just don't have the same feeling you do because they didn't experience it? It's like that.

Mr. Amory with his CBGB painting

     The Mars Bar was a classic dive, and hung in there against gentrification til just a few years ago. It wasn't uncommon to go take a leak and find syringes in the toilet. The place was gross and shitty, but it was "our" gross and shitty.

     Amory combines realistic imagery in a loose, dreamy way with a strong sense of graphic design as he edits out certain details and combines rendered images with bold areas of flat color or white or black. Check out the dark areas in his previous night time urban paintings. He goes back to that in these two night paintings. Another divey bar, Lucy's (right), and the Pyramid Club (below). I remember going to the Pyramid in the 80s and then around 2005 sweating it out at an 80s New Wave tribute night. Full circle. Although in '05 I didn't hear the sounds of broken crack vials crunching under my combat boots as I walked down Avenue A.

     Cup and Saucer is a diner type restaurant in the lower east side. There are alot of artists that paint urban sights, famous places, signage, etc. Amory does the time capsule thing, too, but with his unique imprint, design/composition sense, and painting skills these pieces become more than just documentation. 

     Brett Amory's "This Land Is Not For Sale: Forgotten, Past, and Foreseeable Futures,"  is on display from October 15 - November 14, 2015 at the Jonathan LeVine Gallery, 557C W. 23rd Street in New York City. I highly recommend you see this rich exhibit, especially if you share personal experiences with these places as I do. Or not. It's an excellent show either way. And since this particular post has alot of personal moments in it, below is Jonathan and I at the opening. The photo was taken by my wife, Courtney, whom I proposed to at Jonathan's gallery and we're celebrating our 4th anniversary this week!

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

"Top 10" booths at Frieze via Artnet

I would LOVE for you, dear reader, to weight in with your thoughts and opinions on this article about the "Top 10" booths at Frieze.


Monday, September 21, 2015

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Interesting article from The Atlantic


Tuesday, July 14, 2015

David Salle at Skarstedt Gallery, NY

     One of the most brutal reviews I remember reading was from Time magazine ripping David Salle's (then new) show. Robert Hughes eviscerated him, as he often did with most 80s art stars, also focusing his arrows on Julian Schnabel and his ilk.

     I like some of Salle's early work. At the same time, I was surprised how big he was in the art world because of the obvious weaknesses in his work, especially when he paints his photo-referenced imagery. I felt bad for him after that review, but at the same time it was kinda legit. Clearly, Hughes was looking to take him down a peg or two...or three.

     So I'm gallery hopping on a way-too-hot-to-be-gallery-hopping day when I passed the Skarstedt Gallery that had a new Salle show. Now here on The Gallery Guy blog, I write about shows I like or find interesting. If I dislike a show or think the work is weak, I generally will write about something else. That's how I do this blog, there's puh-lenty of reviewers out there who are all too ready to attack with their snarky-knives at the forefront. With that said, I'll segue into a rare not so nice blog post.

     Salle, now 62, is doing a tribute to 50's/60s pop and commerce with "The Late Product Paintings"  and clearly channeling James Rosenquist in a big way. What got me was the press release. Of course, pr is about hyping the product but this was really ripe: "Among painters, Salle has long been acknowledged as a sophisticated and daring colorist; in these new pictures he uses as many as three distinct color palettes in the same painting, making them coalesce into shimmering, vibrant, and luminous fields." Wait, what? Touting that he's using three color palettes, is a bit lipstick-on-the-pig-ish IMHO. Ouch, but there it is. And not that this is relevant, but I've never heard anyone tout him as a "sophisticated and daring colorist."
     Salle's work is stream-of-consciousness and meandering, often mixing styles, mediums and found objects in that mode. I think it's fair to say that working that way is a bit ballsy, but it is subject to hits and misses.

     Here's what gets me in the piece below: the big yellow telephone. If you're going to copy an advertising line illustration, fine. If you want to do a loose, sketchy drawing or "naive" type image of one, fine. If you're going to do a realistic photo referenced image of a phone - fine! But this comes off as a painter who wanted to do a realistic phone, but it looks more like something from a talented high school student-yes, it's an old phone, some nice things about it, but the proportions and angles are just a bit off - which is fine for a talented high school student. I'm not only amazed that he didn't see it, but no one told him, "Hey, what are you going for with the phone? It's neither here nor there - tighten it up or loosen it up, right now it's in the middle doing nothing." Maybe I'm making much ado about nothing, but it just irks me.

     In her NY Times review, Roberta Smith puzzlingly ends it with, "The eyes boggle, the mind follows suit, and a kind of delirium ensues." Here are some shots from the exhibit, let me know if they make you delirious. And if they do, delirious in what way??

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Kortez "Esoteric Urbanism" at Palette Gallery

In addition to The Gallery Guy and my own work, I own a gallery (Palette Gallery/ArtsSpace) in Asbury Park, NJ. Currently have the first major solo show for Kortez and it was highlighted in the NY TIMES Metropolitan Section, p.9, 7/5/15. We're very proud and tootin' our own horn a bit!

You can follow Palette on our Facebook page. His opening reception is this Sat 7/11 at 6pm.
716 Cookman Ave, Asbury Park, NJ.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

"Tsunami of Sales" at Art Basel

Artnet wrote about the stunning opening hours of sales at Art Basel. The article mentions the usual blue chip names (as well as some surprises) and the almost required celeb name drops like Leonardo DiCaprio in articles like this. Some of the prices and images might make you excited or nauseous...or both.


Lee Ufan, From Line No. 790136

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Bushwick Open Studios 2015

If you are fortunate enough to be able to get to Bushwick (Brooklyn) for the annual Open Studios this weekend, it sounds awesome! This article lists some events and galleries. If you go, it'd be great if you could send The Gallery Guy (sadly, I can't get there) a note with your thoughts and observations, and maybe some photos. I'll post 'em here and on the Facebook page.

See our top picks for what not to miss during Bushwick Open Studios 2015.

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Cartoons of Mohammed event? SERIOUSLY?!?

     On Pamela Geller and the Mohammed cartoon event/shooting in Texas: When I was a kid we had a field trip to a Space Farms Zoo which also specialized in local Native American history and artifacts. A child from another school bought a replica (rubber tip) spear at the gift shop and was slowly inching it toward the butt of a bear leaning against the bars of its cage when his teacher intervened in the nick of time.

     I thought of that when I heard about this Mohammed cartoon event in Garland, Texas. Quite a bit of the arts explore free speech and pushing, probing its boundaries. Pamela Geller and her group are not art-affiliated in any way from what I've gathered. They are, however, cited by many as an anti-Islamic group organization. This is not Charlie Hebdo. This was a specific attempt, IMHO, to offend a religion and culture. Muslims are not supposed to make images of Mohammed and find it offensive when others do. In the No-Shit-Sherlock moment of the year, it was a given that there was going to be retaliation. As an artist, I'm offended that she used art for her and her group's ugliness, and they bear direct responsibility for people being shot at, and 2 people killed.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Clio - NY Art Fairs 2015

     Clio was a small independent fair during the NY Art Fairs in March. A juried selection, and I'm assuming the participants kicked in for the space etc, but I don't know for sure. Chatted with Alessandro Bernim the founder. His card reads "Clio Art Fair - The Anti-Fair for Independent Artists." My one complaint was that when you got to the building, there was no listing in the lobby for which floor they were on. Posters, yes, but no directions. Someone else was in the lobby and left because she couldnt be bothered exploring 5 or 6 floors to locate it. Anyway, a few shots:

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Email from the folks at PULSE Art Fair

Got an email from the folks at PULSE NY Art Fair, with notes and name-dropping from the fair.
Here's most of it for you to peruse -

PULSE New York Closes 10th Anniversary on High Note

March 10, 2015, New York, NY - PULSE Contemporary Art Fair closed its 10th anniversary edition in New York on a high note, as participants reported positive energy and solid sales. With more than 100 international artists to discover, the fair drew serious collectors, curators and journalists from around the world -- "la creme de la creme," reported first-time exhibitor, John Ferrere from Paris¹ Galerie L'Inlassable, which sold its entire selection of sculptures by Reinhard Voss. "Whatever PULSE is doing to attract VIPs and young collectors, it's working," said David Moore of Pictura Gallery.

³This is my third PULSE Contemporary Art Fair at the helm, and the most exciting to date.² said Director, Helen Toomer. ³I think the exhibitors, their artists and our visitors felt and absorbed the renewed energy. PULSE¹s move back to March during Armory Arts Week was definitely the right decision. With that said, Thursday¹s snowstorm definitely had us all worried, but we were thrilled to find that it did not impact our attendance and I¹d like to thank our wonderful collectors for attending and for their unwavering commitment to supporting and acquiring contemporary art.¹

Visitors praised PULSE New York¹s central location at the Metropolitan Pavilion in Chelsea, a convenient hub for discovering new art in an intimate and stimulating setting. Both visitors and exhibitors noted that the fair¹s airy layout and tightly curated focus‹with 80% of galleries showing three or fewer artists‹allowed visitors to spend time truly engaging with the artwork on display while getting to know the exhibitors. "It's really well laid out," said Nancy Whitenack from Dallas' Conduit Gallery. "You don't miss a thing."

Of the fair¹s 50 exhibitors, both established and up-and-coming galleries reported successful showings. Gallery Poulsen of Copenhagen sold out its entire booth and inventory of paintings by Jean-Pierre Roy, Aaron Johnson, and Christian Rex Van Minnen to diverse collectors, including Oscar-winner Patricia Arquette, Leonardo DiCaprio and Helena Christensen. "It's been wild," said gallerist Morton Poulsen. "I've never experienced this interest‹and it's both new and good collectors who are coming.² In addition to sales at the fair, galleries reported interest in new commissions and also museum shows as curators and corporate collections from Microsoft, eBay, JPMorgan Chase and Citicorp, to the Jerusalem Museum, 21c Museum Hotels, Rubin Foundation, The Aldrich Museum, Museum of Art and Design, Children's Museum and Jacksonville MoCA among others were in attendance.

While established galleries fared well, including New York¹s Davidson Gallery, which sold a suite of six cryographs by Sam Messinger to an unnamed museum trustee on the first day and went on to sell two works by Nicky Broekhuysen in the gallery¹s first ever showing of the artist, both younger galleries and alternative spaces reported great results through the IMPULSE and POINTS initiatives. ³The booth totally rocks and the flow of people has been great‹and totally worth it,² said Mima McMillan of Swoon Studio/Braddock Tiles which sold more than 100 prints in the first hour of the Private Preview Brunch. ³We¹re a non-profit so for us to spend money on something like this is a huge decision. PULSE has a great reputationŠ we would definitely do it again.² Meanwhile, SVA Galleries reported sales of three watercolors by Nadine Faraj to Kyle DeWoody, and YUKI-SIS, an emerging gallery from Tokyo, placed a large, lace-inspired woodcut by Katsutoshi Yuasa with a collector from Washington, D.C., who was not aware of the artist¹s work prior to PULSE New York. ProjectArt, a non-profit which aims to raise awareness about the importance of arts education, hosted a wildly popular digital photo booth at the fair that founder Adarsh Alphons estimates reached an audience of 1 million viewers through social media postings and the hashtag #artisaright.

Among the booths to gain particular attention was Emerson Dorsch (Miami, FL), whose artist Elisabeth Condon was awarded the 2015 New York PULSE Prize for an exceptional solo show at the fair for her colorful mixed-media paintings born out of a residency in Shanghai. In addition to being a favorite of fair visitors and the PULSE Prize jury, the work attracted the attention of collectors, with Condon¹s painting ³Ethereal Body² being acquired by the JPMorgan Chase Art Collection. ³We¹re really excited to be back at PULSE. It feels like coming home,² said gallerist Tyler Emerson Dorsch. ³When the director of the fair has such great energy, it makes a difference.²

Special programming was also a strong draw for visitors to PULSE, with particular buzz surrounding PLAY, the video and new media initiative curated by Billy Zhao of the Marina Abramovic Institute, and the 10th-anniversary curatorial roundtable discussion 10 x 10 which featured ten passionate curators, including Rocio Aranda-Alvarado from El Museo del Barrio and Matthew Israel from Artsy in conversation about their visions for the future. Crowds of art-lovers attended the at-capacity Thursday night Young Collectors Cocktails featuring a musical performance by Chargaux as well as the After-Party held on Saturday evening at Hotel Americano.

PULSE New York once again proved to be a destination for collectors looking to acquire museum-quality contemporary art ranging from new works by forward-thinking emerging talent to limited edition, hard-to-find pieces by established artists. In addition to the art professionals who visited, PULSE welcomed celebrity VIPs including George Lucas and Mellody Hobson, David Alan Grier and Dev Patel, who purchased a piece by James Austin Murray from Lyons Wier Gallery. Along with an engaged local crowd there was strong attendance by international visitors with buyers coming from Berlin, London and Israel, as well as repeat visitors who attend PULSE Miami Beach. The high-energy fair had dealers praising the new direction of PULSE with galleries and collectors both excited and eager to return. "Between participating in Miami and New York fairs this marks our 14th time exhibiting at PULSE,¹ said Max Davidson from Davidson Contemporary, ³and we are proud to be part of this community as it continues to grow and mature. Sales were strong and we are looking forward to continuing with PULSE in Miami Beach.²