Thursday, March 31, 2011

How Do You Want to See MAYKR?

Today, Google has graced Blogger with a new feature that allows readers to view their favorite blogs in five new ways.
These new options are accessible by entering:   /view    after the blog url, and the options are navigable via a drop down menu on the top right area of the screen.
Here's more information on this feature via

Friday, March 25, 2011

Eye Candy Friday: Catch an Eyeful

Today's ECF is a commemoration of the procedure endured today by one of us here at KAMP MAYKR.

Art Boobs is an ever growing compendium, in blog form, of all things boob in art - contemporary and not.  I'm a longtime Art Boob subscriber and find it refreshing and enlightening tour through art history.  I usually consume art boobs through my google reader, so on visiting the site today for research, I found that Frank van Eykelen is the man behind Art Boobs.  To him, I say thank you. 
And for those who find this content somehow uncouth or simply not your cup of tea, perhaps you'd appreciate Frank's compilation of photos of people with their giant zucchini on his Stereoparty blog.

But back to boobs.  This Ted talk by Deborah Rhodes, is one that should be watched and passed along. 

(I'll say I have had issues with the marketing juggernaut of Breast Cancer fundraising Campaigns that have infused itself into a  - at the expense, I think, of other, more deadly cancers, statistically speaking.  But cancer is cancer and information relating to innovations and knowledge pertaining to treating/detecting cancer in all its forms should be explored and supported and spread and given the opportunity to be debated, not cast aside by those steeped and committed to the line of conventional thought.)

Still haven't had enough?  Here's a full frontal peek-a-boo taken by c-monster of a work created by Raquel Paiwonsky.  I just found Paiwonsky's website, which features an eyeful and then some.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Dead Hare Radio Hour show #1 hits the airwaves

It's out of the bag.  The first show of the Dead Hare Radio Hour aired yesterday afternoon at 5pm.  We'll be doing it again next Tuesday at 5pm on Independent Radio, WVKR 91.3 FM in Poughkeepsie.

But you can listen to show #1 here:

The Dead Hare Radio podcast is available for download via iTunes today.

The Vassar College Newspaper, The Miscellany News ran an article this week on the Dead Hare Radio Hour.

Only through meeting with the Misc.'s arts editor did I learn that the paper has a fully populated and updated website, which is great news for anyone who has been stymied and frustrated by the lack of information coming out of Vassar about events and talks and the like that often happen at Vassar and to which the public is welcome..

Monday, March 21, 2011

The Dead Hare Radio Hour Coming Your Way 3/22/2011

I've been chained to my computer of late even more than previously.  The culprit behind this turn of events (aside from my own impetuous urge to get my self into burdensome, but rewarding projects) is The Dead Hare Radio Hour.
DHRH is a joint project with Matthew Slaats.  He had proposed to me the possibility of doing an art related radio show at least a year ago.  Ideas are easy to say yes to when they are just ideas.  Matthew had shopped the concept around to a couple of local internet radio operations before it occurred to him to check with Vassar College's radio station, WVKR. Matthew works at Vassar in the technology department.  The proposal was accepted and we were suddenly faced with a new recurring deadline, another unpaid gig that comes fully loaded with a vacuum custom made for sucking up hours of personal time.  We both had one of those "oh shit" moments.  Then we went forward, with trepidation and excitement at every step.
Our first show airs tomorrow, March 22 at 5pm, Eastern Time.  Our regular timeslot - provided we're not pitched from the station will be Tuesdays from 5-6pm.  In addition to the broadcast originating in the Hudson Valley (the signal strength is 3400 watts and can be heard in portions of five states,)  the show will be streamed live on WVKR's website, and it will be available for download as a podcast. (Podcast will be available for download by Wednesday evenings....consider subscribing to it - when the feed is set up this Wednesday.)

The format of the show will largely be talk, with interviews and conversations with artists and curators and such, but we also want to feature sound works from artists and musicians and folks who are engaged in radio as an art medium.
Matthew and I are of like minds on many fronts - one of them being that we both are interested in catalyzing and sharing conversations about art and culture -  but we bring different aspects to the show.  He's an artist with heavy a social practice bent and I tinker in the studio.  I think he's more concerned with investigating the role of the artist in society than I am and this may well be reflected in the directions we each follow in uncovering content for the show.

The Hudson Valley will be a major focus of the show content, a - because there's a lot of interesting people and projects based here, and b - because this is where we're at, and the content of the show will, in some way, be borne of convenience (but not of laziness.)  But it's not only going limited to this any means.  We'll be capturing the folks we encounter on our art-driven paths.  It's a big/small world out there and we're interested in examining how concerns/inspirations/connectedness in large and small contexts intermingle and influence the work and conversations that are happening on the ground, in any region.  We will be bringing on board other contributors to add to our coverage.

Given our schedules, much of the show content will be pre-recorded, although we look forward to doing some live in studio things as we are able.  I think we're both far less interested in interviewing people than capturing conversations between people.  I, for one, am an avid listener.  I hope to set up situations that other folks are apt to enjoy listening to.

So Show #1 features two interviews.  We speak with Carolina Miranda of the blog and Duncan McKenzie of Bad at Sports.  I follow both of these individuals, gladly.  ( I've been an avid listener of the B@S podcast since 2007.  It is my weekly dose of art.)  Part of what I appreciate most about both of these projects is the mixture of intelligent reflection and humor (not rarely, the adolescent kind.)  High and Low, intermingled as they should be.
I find both of these interviews entertaining and informative. I hope ya'll will too.  This being our first show - there is some unevenness in the audio quality of show 1, but we're learning valuable lessons everyday as we get our radio legs.

Why the name?  There's a little context on the Dead Hare website, and I'll be posting a bit on that here soon too.
Today Angelika reminded me of these photos she took of a dead hare several years ago in Eastern Colorado.  Dead Hares are everywhere these days.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Eye Candy Friday: Lost? Never. Just found

 I spied this small sculpture while walking to the Hudson Valley Tweetup held at Chill last Sunday afternoon.  Though tiny, this piece has a presence that could rival any di Suvero over at Storm King (which opens its 2011 season on Apr1, BTW.)  On the way back, this thing still presented a pull on me.  So I took it home.
The new acquisition, re-sited at Kamp Maykr.

 This found work in Poughkeepsie strongly recalls (to my mind) the recent David Hammons exhibit at L&M Arts in NYC

This jacked up Mac laptop screen could pass as a pretty good abstract Cosima Von Bonin piece.
(I couldn't get a photo without that glare)

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Meet yer Maykr: Martin Bromirski

I posted previously about the trip Peter Acheson, Mark DeLura and I made to the Jewel Thief exhibit at the Tang Museum in Saratoga, NY at the end of December.  Visiting the museum that day was a bonus warm up, but it was not our primary objective.  Our main mission was to visit the studio of Martin Bromirski in Greenwich, NY (a half hour drive from the Tang.)

Greenwich, NY.

Martin is widely known as the man behind the blog Anaba.  The blog, which he started in 2004 while living in Richmond, Virginia, is his fiber connection to the rest of the world.  He's an insatiable looker which is evident in the way he generously, and with dedication shares the work of many many other artists on Anaba.  The posts are chock full of his images of and responses to other people's artworks culled from his intense, meticulously planned multi-day sojourns in NYC.  The remarkable aspect of Anaba that is lost on the person who assumes (and it's easy to do given the volume and timeliness of his posts) that Martin is a resident of NYC, with the habit of haunting and documenting the exhibits in Chelsea, Brooklyn and the Lower East Side.  In reality, Martin lives painfully far from NYC.  The distance - 186 miles from NYC - is only painful for those who want to make regular trips into the city - but have no car.  Martin has no car.  He makes these gallery hopping visits via a convoluted, several hour journey by bus, then packs in as much viewing possible over the proceeding 3 or 4 days.  And, up until recently, Martin didn't even have a computer.  His posts usually often (and sometimes still) are made from computers at the library.  Anaba is a blog by an artist about what that artist wants to see and wants to share with those who care - with humor, and at no small cost to him.  If you are so inclined, I suggest you throw a little coin his way via his donate button.
But enough of the blog....

We met Martin at his mom's house, then made the 10 minute walk with him to his studio.

We're walking....

and we're walking......

There's the building where Martin's studio is located.

There's Martin's studio window.

Martin's studio is a sliver of space flanked by two other studios on the second floor of a building otherwise used for storage (I think.)
At one point during the visit, conversation turned to the fact that the proportions of his studio mimic the elongated horizontal format of many of his paintings.  Martin mentioned that he may one day lay canvas on the floor to catch the over spill of many year painting, then stretch it and  mount it on the wall as his one monumentally scaled work.  His version of this notion, given relation to his "normal sized" works, may have more raison d'etre than Joe Bradley's recent go at Gavin Brown.

Martin on the left, Mark Delura on the right.
Examining Martin's "extreme landscaped" canvases while standing inside a space of a similarly formatted footprint, one can easily envision the effect of an infinite mirror; as if this world in which we ponder a grain of colored sand on a Bromirski painting could itself be grain of colored sand on some other colossal Bromirski painting of galactic scale.  In fact, Martin's use of circular forms evokes the cosmic.  His 2008 exhibit Circus on Mars at the John Davis Gallery in Hudson, NY conveyed a real sense for the cosmic and creepy carnival clownsiness implied by the show title. 

Martin's work table, crusted and dusted with sand.

Martin's works are paintings of simple means.  They live on a strict and steady diet: acrylic paint & matte medium, colored paper, colored sand, glitter, plus time and gravity .
Erosion and deterioration are at work here.  But what remains of those processes is pure of hue; fresh, not faded.  Martin achieves the effect of embossing through the process of addition. His pieces are built up layers of matte medium, colored sand and acrylic paint.  After building the layers, he'll scrape the surface down in the bathroom sink, revealing the underlying colors, rinsing, then repeatingt.  His works can appear deceptively simple in photographs, but the process is very rigorous.   The worked layers of sand and paint take on the appearance of crushed velvet.

Although Martin's work is very different, I found an affinity in color, texture and abandon in with Jessica Stockholder's "monoprints",

Martin takes the pre-fabbed canvases with the extended rectangular format - the kind that I've always seen in the art supply store and determined to be useless - and puts them to good use.  As Martin says, this size removes them from the realm of paintings and renders them more as objects.

Some raw materials

Peter Acheson examining a piece.

If Will Cotton's paintings convey the promise of a dreamy sugar orgy, Martin's depict the next morning's hangover.  Can one puke glitter?  Would could be a more rewarding end to a retching filled evening?  How better the relief of tossing one's cookies if one could see the previous night's consumption dressed up with glitter?

Maybe I should do a book of artist's studio floors.

The distress of the canvases often entails punching through them, cutting the surface, then stretching and tying off the pieces, sometimes mending them with fragments of Martin's own clothes; socks, jeans, boxers etc.

The back of a painting trussed up with pieces of denim.

The top left piece is the one I took home (Martin initiated trades with the three of us.)

After the visit we walked back home through the dark.  Greeted at home by Martin's mom and bowls of might damn fine chili, which we savored while being treated to a viewing of Martin's trove of treasures and regaled with tales of conquest (and collaborations with Richard Prince.)

Jill Reynolds talk, March 5, 2011

In May 2010, an  episode of Science Friday, in its recurring Science Diction feature, included a story about how in the 1830's, William Whewell,  a Cambridge historian and philosopher of science coined the term scientist, to characterize the "men" who followed that pursuit.  In making the case for this new word, Whewell cited the word artist as a model of the use of the affix 'ist' to describe one as a general "cultivator" of a discipline. 

Last Saturday, (March 5) 2010 Dutchess County Arts Council, Friends of the Great Swamp (FrOGS) and the Oblong Land Conservancy hosted a broad and very informative talk given by 2010 DCAC fellow Jill Reynolds at Trinity Pawling.  The two part talk centered on the interface between art and science.  In the first part, Jill highlighted a selection of artists who have been either inspired by science or utilize scientific methods, materials or procedures in the creation of their work.  The second part of the talk focused on Jill's own work and the role that science plays in it.
I recorded Jill's talk and expect to have some form of it uploaded online in the next couple of weeks.  When I do, you'll be able to see it here on MAYKR. 

After the talk the gathered crowd adjourned to the Gallery on the Green in central Pawling where Jill's selections of Jill's work is currently on view.

I dig this tiny picture of Jill.  It makes her look like the mad scientist madly at work.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Passionate Gathering: Herb & Dorothy screening @ Dia:Beacon 3.12.11

Angelika Rinnhofer's reworking of the Herb & Dorothy poster for the 2009 kork advent project.

There are collectors, and there are COLLECTORS.
The first is the type of collectors are essentially consumers.  Their looking for a product.  Sure that product may well be unique and handcrafted, it may touch them a some level, but it essentially fills an external need ( decoration, meaningful gift, etc.) but it's purchase is not primarily motivated by an internal drive. Artists and galleries may bestow upon these folks the moniker of collector, perhaps hoping that calling him/her so will make him/her so.  The tendency for an artist to refer to one as a collector is de riguer in the artworld, but it might also placate some deep seeded need to make something more of the transaction than there is. 

The second type, the COLLECTOR is the kind that artists and galleries dream of.  This person is driven by a passion for the intangibles that accompany the equally passion inducing tangibles of a work of art. This type of individual is committed (or challenged by) to the ideas and the philosophy - the program - of a given artist or gallery, believing that the experience of the exchange entails far more than the exchange of an object - or multiple objects over time.

Herb and Dorothy Vogel are a couple that exemplify the endeavor of COLLECTING.  The Vogels represent a collector that artists adore and value, and gallerists are tend to be uneasy with....given their manner of circumventing the galleries, acquiring works directly from artists.
The Vogels' passion for art and ideas affirms the pursuits of someone like me (as an artist) and further motivates me to do what I do.  (Not for the hope of having work purchased, but because their passion affirms the passion I feel in exploring what I do; it gives proof of concept that these things that are pushed and pulled - the whole activity that throbs in the studio is vital - to someone else (regardless of the particulars of taste and selection.)
The Vogels are the subject of an fascinating documentary from 2008 entitled Herb & Dorothy.  I recommend it highly.  I could go on, but I won't.  Here's the trailer:

The film Herb & Dorothy will be screened at Dia:Beacon on Saturday at noon as part of a weekend long program to raise funds for the refurbishment of The Beacon Theatre on Main St.  Admission for the screening at Dia is $20.  A Q&A panel with the Vogels, the filmmakers, artist Charles Clough and Roy Lichtenstein Foundation Executive Director Jack Cowart will follow the film at 2pm and a reception at 3:15  (cost for the panel talk is $10 and $20 for the reception.)
The Beacon Freeze Frame Fundraiser continues on Sunday with a 12 pm Screening of the film Fresh at the Howland Cultural Center followed by a Q&A panel and then a treat of fresh, locally grown food at the Beacon Theatre ($20, $20.)

The Vogels are not alone.  They are extraordinary, given the details of their lives, and the generosity of their gift, not to just one institution, or even a handful, but to the country.  The Vogel 50x50 is a program in which the Vogels donated 50 works of art from their collection to museums and art centers in each of the fifty states.  Seriously, if you haven't seen the film, and you are near Beacon this weekend, check it out.  As one who is on one side of the experience of an artwork, (the maykr side) it's to see the result of the devotion of those that don't create the stuff, but fill their lives and homes with what is essentially an vital document of a slice of human creative thought, ingenuity and aspiration.

I've mentioned here before that I work, from time to time, at the CCS Bard| Hessel Museums, installing shows.  Last Summer, the Hessel held an exhibit of works selected by Matthew Higgs from the collection of Marty and Rebecca Eisenberg.  The title of the exhibit,  At Home/Not At Home addressed the very notion of collecting and living with art.  The Eisenberg's domestic situation is very different from the Vogels' but the close proximity in which both families live with the work is very much in keeping.  As can be seen in the film, the Vogels' tiny apartment was and is crazily packed to the ceiling with artwork.  The Eisenberg home, though not crazily stacked to the ceiling with artwork as is the Vogels' apartment, is still filled, cheek by jowl, with artwork filling every possible niche, nook, cranny....and where there are no walls, certain conducive works are installed in front of windows. 

It's easy to tell when paintings, sculpture et al are displayed for tasteful effect.  It's equally easy and damn thrilling to see art deployed in such a way as to demonstrate just how essential it is to the sustenance of the inhabitants of that space.

Wednesday, March 09, 2011

March 10, 2011: dubknowdub performance @ the Clocktower Gallery in NYC

 Looking down from the 12+1th Floor.

Last night I headed down to the Clocktower Gallery and the studios of AIR (Art International Radio,) formerly WPS1.  The purpose for this journey was to conduct a Dead Hare Radio interview AIR Managing Director Beatrice Johnson and Director of Programs David Weinstein to talk about the history.
 STO installing his works on paper.

Additionally, I chatted with STO, who along with ELI, make up the visual and noise making entity DubknowDub.  The duo will be culminating their month long Time Sync Laboratory Residency at the Clocktower with an exhibit and performance, tomorrow (March 10) @ 6-9pm.  STO was in the process of installing his ink on paper works.  He explained that along with the visual works he and ELI created during their time in the Clocktower, they've been sampling the creepy sounds made by the building late in the night.  Apparantly, a man committed suicide in the Clock Tower in 1913, and it's said the building is haunted....
A quote from a note on the deceased's body in the original NY Times story:
"Dear Art:  Everything you've done for me sticks me like a pin."  Yep. That sounds about right.

STO's battery powered grocery cart - instrument.

If you want to catch tomorrow night's performance at the Clocktower Gallery at 108 Leonard St, here are instructions on getting into the building.  The evening's events can also be heard on the ARTonAIR audio stream. 

AIR has an extensive archive of audio documentation on its website.  The audio stream features a mixture of art and culture related conversation and music and sound works.

 Mary Heilmann's Two Lane Blacktop, 2009 
is one many permanent works installed throughout the space.

We're still waiting for an inaugural airdate for Dead Hare Radio, but my interviews at AIR will be broadcast shortly thereafter.