Austin Thomas has an exhibition of new drawings and print work at Morgan Lehman Gallery through March 25. Her work marries layered collage techniques to printmaking processes, making prominent use of found paper: book covers, ledger pages, loose-leaf notebooks.
“Portraits & Perennials,” an exhibition of paintings and works on paper by Robert Kushner, opens tonight at DC Moore Gallery, where it’s on display through March 18. In an essay accompanying the exhibition catalog, “Do REAL Men Paint Flowers?”, Kushner writes, “So, are geometry and botany at peace? In dialogue? At each other’s throats? I would like to think that when I am done after working on it for weeks and sometimes months, there is an interesting and intentionally confusing juxtaposition between pure abstraction and linear form—that they each balance one another and create their own tightrope act.”
Matteo Pericoli is the founder of the Laboratory of Literary Architecture, an interdisciplinary project that looks at fiction through the lens of architecture, designing and building stories as architectural projects. In this series, he shares some of his designs and what they reveal about the stories they’re modeled on.
The unnamed narrator in Juan José Saer’s novel The Witness is an old man who, in the second half of the sixteenth century, decides to write the story of his life. His voice—intense, measured, meticulous in its details, analytical and strongly contemporary—takes the reader back some sixty years earlier, when, as a thirteen-year-old orphan, the narrator set sail as a cabin boy on one of the first-ever expeditions in search of a passage to India through the New World.
Upon its arrival in the Americas and caressing its coastline, the expedition insinuates itself inland by slowly sailing up one of its muddy rivers. During a survey on the seemingly uninhabited mainland, the crew is suddenly attacked by a group of natives who, in a matter of seconds, kill everyone except the protagonist. Read More
An exhibition of Randy Dudley’s photo-realist drawings of Chicago and Brooklyn is on display at Ameringer McEnery Yohe through February.
- John Berger, whose keen, generous writing changed the way we look at and talk about art, has died at ninety. As the Guardian’s obit puts it, “Art and the wider world seemed to make more sense after watching Berger on the BBC, with his piercing blue eyes, steady delivery and groovy seventies shirt, eloquently explain perspective or the idealization of the nude. Susan Sontag once described Berger as peerless in his ability to make ‘attentiveness to the sensual world’ meet ‘imperatives of conscience.’ ” Berger told Geoff Dyer in 1984, “storytellers lose their identity and are open to the lives of other people … At any one moment it is difficult to see what the job your life is because you are so aware of what you lending yourself to. This is perhaps why I use the term ‘being a witness.’ One is a witness of others but not of oneself.”
- We all dream of hitting the big time—and when you’re a writer, there’s probably no “big time” bigger than selling your papers to a library. (You have to take your pleasures where you can get them.) Jonathan Lethem has just sold his papers to Yale, meaning they’ve laid claim to his ephemera, his diaries, the very essence of his writerly being … including his rich stock of drawings of vomiting cats: “For about fifteen years, every time I had a really good dance party that went late, with people lolling around drunk and exhausted, at about two a.m., I would hand out paper and ask everyone to draw a vomiting cat … I ended up with an incredibly thick file of drawings, some by people who went on to be published cartoonists and writers.”
We’re away until January 3, but we’re reposting some of our favorite pieces from 2016. Enjoy your holiday!
Joe Gibbons on his drawings from Rikers Island.
Over a forty-year career, Joe Gibbons has become a legend in the world of experimental film. His work so thoroughly wrinkles the cloth woven by art and life that the question of which imitates which becomes moot. In his 1985 film Living in the World, he stars as a working stiff named Joe Gibbons, just trying to make it through the eight-hour day with his dignity intact. Existentially bereft, he laments, “I read the paper and there’s so much going on that I have nothing to do with.” He quits his job and turns to crime to make ends meet.
When the real Gibbons made headlines last year in an unlikely heist story, that same voice was quoted in the papers as evidence of his moral degeneracy and criminal intent. FORMER MIT PROFESSOR “ROBS” BANK, FILMS “HEIST,” the New York Post said. And, later, in the New York Times: FILMMAKER JOE GIBBONS GETS A YEAR IN PRISON FOR A ROBBERY HE CALLED PERFORMANCE ART.