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Archive for the ‘New York Times’ Category

Dispute Over 2 Auction Lots

In New York Times on February 27, 2009 at 5:27 pm

So much attention has been given to the success of the Yves Saint Laurent auction held by Christie’s in Paris at the beginning of the week that I thought I’d give attention to a darker side of the event (I’m normally a happy-go-lucky person, but I’ve been in a mood for the past few days and it’s being reflected in the types of articles that catch my interest).  Prior to the auction, there was a dispute between China and Christie’s.  China claimed that two of the items up for auction (bronze statues of animals) belonged to the Qing dynasty, were wrongfully removed from the country years ago, and should be returned at once.  Mr. Berge (the partner of Yves Saint Laurent) absolutely refused and was quoted saying, he would give the heads to China if Beijing would “observe human rights and give liberty to the Tibetan people and welcome the Dalai Lama.” 

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The sale went on and the pieces brought in nearly $40 million alone.  Chinese groups tried desperately to sue in France in an effort to stop the auction.  The Chinese Foreign Ministry launched arguments that these relics of the most importance to preserve Chinese culture and heritage.  And yet… the auction went on.  The buyers were unknown (I wouldn’t be surprised if the buyers were Chinese) and the sale was a success for Berge.  In the meantime… we all can’t help but wonder what China’s response to this lack of acknowledgement of their requests will be.

This article was found in the New York Times – there is a lot more printed there about the Christie’s auction too.. all very worth reading.

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Tehching Hsieh at the MoMA

In New York Times on February 20, 2009 at 6:22 pm

MoMA has been making news lately.  Today’s article is about a review written by Roberta Smith in the New York Times a couple days ago.  I have chosen to include this in my blog because I saw the exhibit that she reviewed and was especially interested and affected by it (before it made headlines).  I came across the exhibit by accident when I got lost on my way out of MoMA (which is actually a regular occurrence on my visits to that museum).  It’s a small exhibit and is the first of a series of exhibits that document famous performance art pieces that artists have executed in the past.  

The first exhibit by Tehching Hsieh featured photographs of his first year-long piece called Cage Piece where he locked himself into a cell (which he crafted) and refrained from doing anything for an entire year.  Once a day he was brought food and his waste bucket was cleaned out and for limited hours his loft (where the cage was located) was open to the public so they may view him in the cage.  

The entire exhibit was captivating.  The most interesting part of it was the main room filled with 365, 4×6″ black and white photographs of the artist (1 photo for each day he was in the cage).  Though the only thing that changed about Hsieh was the length of his hair, it was fascinating to walk from start to finish to look at the progression of a year’s time.  

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The cage was also included in the exhibit.  It was lit in a way that projected the shadows of the bars onto the walls around the room – as a viewer, I felt like I was locked into a cell.  

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The exhibit will be up until March, I believe (I could be wrong so check the MoMA site), and it is absolutely something worth checking out.

MoMA in the subway

In New York Times on February 16, 2009 at 5:06 pm

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The Museum of Modern Art is launching a new ad campaign that is going to take over NY underground.  Yup, that’s right, the MoMA is filling subways with large scale images of their permanent collection in an effort to appeal to the NYC crowds.  It is one of the most ambitious ad campaigns that MoMA has ever launched.  The works appear as they would in the museum: wall labels and even audio recordings.

MoMA’s six-week ad campaign is intended to both attract people to the museuem (which I think it will) as well as encourage people to purchase memberships (which I’m not so sure about because it seems like people who purchase memberships might not necessarily be the people riding in the subway… ?  I could be wrong though).  It is an interesting ad campaign, and whether it works or not, atleast NYC gets one hell of a beautiful subway station for a month and a half!

Schroeder and Beethoven

In New York Times on January 19, 2009 at 4:06 pm

schroederI come across so many interesting articles about the arts that I have decided to break down and begin a blog about some of the things I read and my thoughts about them (I was inspired by a friend of mine who does the same thing for sports articles).  To not overwhelm myself, or those who read this, I’ll limit each post to one “article of interest.”  The source of the articles will range from the New York Times Arts section to a relatively unknown independent arts magazine – what can I say, I subscribe to everything art!  I’d like to throw out there though that there are tons of sites online that do the work for me and post interesting art news right on their homepage for me to see (one that I recently signed up for is called MutualArt.com; the site is especially great because it lets me personalize my profile so that articles that apply to my specific interests are the first ones to come up… it’s a good starting place if you’re having a hard time finding relevant-to-your-interests articles).  

Anyways, today’s “article of interest” comes from the New York Times Arts section.  We all grew up with Peanuts cartoons by Charles Shulz but because of the cartoons’ simplicity and basic storyline we might miss the absolute genius behind the cartoon strip (a similar affect of  the art and stories by Mr. Seuss).  This article brings to our attention the connection between the Beethoven music that the character Schroeder plays and the tone of the cartoon.  Knowing relatively little about music, I had no idea that the musical notes and song choices were so intentional.  “The music is a character in the strip as much as the people are, because the music sets the tone.”  Who knew?   As a long time admirer of Mr. Schulz, I must say that this article has increased even further (which I didn’t think was possible) my esteem for his work.  The article also mentions a Charles M. Schulz Museum and Research Center in San Jose… now THAT would be something interesting to see.