Thursday, September 25, 2008

Your Social Life in Watts, DTLA and even Bakersfield!

The first show I want to post about is opening tomorrow Friday at the Center For Experimental Art and Architecture. Find all the information here.

The second thing is the all-day inauguration of Edgar Arceneaux Watts House Project, click on the link to find all the information you need. You can volunteer for the house renovation too, if you are not as clumsy as my Frenchy self (seriously, I need a dude buddy to help each time I need to drive a nail to my wall).

It's also the closing day for my friend Nadege Monchera-Baer's show at El Nopal 109 W 5 th St, Los Angeles Ca 90013.from 11AM to 5 PM.

You can also spend your Sunday at the Martin Kippenberger retrospective at MoCA, which happens a bit late in the US (seriously) but is really good. It includes some of FBC!'s favorite artworks, such as the lamppost for drunks, Krieg Boese, The Happy End of Franz Kafka’s ‘Amerika’, a very imaginary portrait of Beuys' mother, the crucified frog that scandalized Italy and the Pope, and one installation the title of which escapes me, but that includes a real Gerhard Richter Gray Painting made into a tabletop. FBC! was fortunate to see the show with Doris Krystof, who co-curated the 2006 retrospective (with Jessica Morgan for the Tate). I've learned a lot, and I'm a Kippy fan.
You can also go to LACMA see the Francis Alÿs show, a dazzling gathering of many painting of Saint Fabiola. Alas, no pictures were allowed in the exhibition, I'm sad.

Lastly, this Saturday is Museum Day all over America. I'm sure after all those talks about the financial bailout, the takeover of WaMu (my bank) by JP Morgan Chase, The Debate-Or-Not-Tomorrow, you may want some time off and have a nice, cultural day. Unfortunately the only big museum participating this year in LA is the Getty (seriously, why LACMA the family institution isn't in it???) so it gives you an incentive to visit smaller museums. You need to download the admission card from the site, and voila! You can a guest can freely roam the often overlooked Fowler Museum, the CAFAM, go to Bakersfield and have Basque food before or after your trip (yes, there is a museum in Bakerfield!), etc. Find the complete list here.

FBC! blatantly appropriated the pics from the Watts House Project and the LACMA websites.

Eloge Of The Banal and Thursday Links

While I'm at it, I wanted to provide a few links today. Last week I attended a wedding where I saw Australian native, Los Angeles-based artist Ricky Swallow. He happens to have a website, and also a blog!
Make sure to visit both, his website has a cool list of links. Ricky has a show opening in LA (next week I think?) at Marc Foxx, who's still renovating his space at 6150 Wilshire, now that Roberts & Tilton have moved to Culver City.
Another link I wanted to provide is if you are on Facebook. There's a new group called In Appreciation Of Banal Photography thats the coolest thing ever. Your truly contributes, but even if I didn't I'd love to see a show with all the pictures. To be honest, most everybody in that group is an art professional, artists, critics, curators and art consultants alike, so even though everyone is striving for the utmost banal, the results are anything but.
And speaking of Facebook, I've just listed FBC! on one of the blogs applications. I'm not sure what it's for, but I'm there.
Lastly, if you want to befriend me on Facebook, please send me a short message explaining you're an FBC! reader. Thanks!
I'll post Your Social Life much later tonight, after the outage.

Scheduled outage today at 4PM PST

So wait a bit for the latest installment of Your Social Life, and a few more links.

Because Dogs Deserve Art, Too.

Yesterday I told you about that dishonest offer I got through my mailbox. I found it pretty funny (and lame, it gos without saying), though if I keep on receiving offers like this I'm going to find someone to help me make my blog pro and figure out how to put advertisement on it, that old-fashioned way of promoting content without having to write about it.
I found it funny because so far FBC! isn't a lifestyles blog, it's my little amateurish take on the world, where I link to things I find interesting, things I want to talk about without any prompting or solicitation.
Such as my friend Matthew Betcher new venture, "Chienchien" (en endearing word French people use on their four-legged canine friends. "toutou" is another one). Matt never asked to be promoted on FBC! so it's my pleasure to introduce his work without feeling pressured to do so.

In a few sentences, Matt's new business is about taking beautiful, luxurious photographs of man's best friend for their owners to proudly frame and hang in the place of honor in their homes.
When he first told me of his project, I was a bit skeptical: for one thing, as you may know, I'm strictly a cat person, and secondly I was wondering how his studio portraits of dogs could attract clients. Because what I had in mind were those cheesy pet portraits advertised on craigslist, not the quality, old-fashioned, large format silver-gelatin prints Matt was taking. One glance at his website convinced me: I'd hang one of his B&W above my desk in a jiffy, especially Ella and Ned (look at this tooth!), even though I don't own dogs and don't like them that much.

If you need a bit of convincing, click on the link and have a look at the portfolio). The prices may seem expensive, but are in fact cheap if you consider you are getting several hours of studio time and high quality prints, and are a bargain if you realize the end result is an art piece, not a simple picture of your doggie.

In passing I'd consider the whole endeavor (starting the business, focusing on dogs, etc.) a conceptual art piece if I were Matt. Who is a talented photographer, and I'd love to be able to show you some of his non-canine work: he made a beautiful artist book about the Arroyo Secco with prints on transparencies and gold leaf backing, and some larger-than-large-scale pictures of empty lit billboards in the desert that are beautiful. But I don't know where to link, so I'll let you check his website and contact him to either have a beautiful artwork made about your dog, or have a studio visit with him.
It's too bad my own little Pomme is so skittish, because I'd love for Matt to make a beautiful picture of her.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

FBC! Is Incorruptible...almost

Unlike politicians, real estate developers, construction businesses, insurance companies and subprime mortgage specialists, FBC! is incorruptible!
FBC! was her usual morning grumpy self when checking out her mailbox this morning (I haven't had my espresso yet) and really amused when seeing the email integrally copied below. The html was slightly messed up after I pasted the email, but you get the gist of it. Eh ... how are you supposed to write an "unbiased review" if you get paid or receive a "product sample" (pearl bracelet, anyone?).
If I wasn't so busy I would probably write a post about the difference between journalists (not supposed to accept bribes) and bloggers who are not held liable to the same high standards (heck, it's a non-paid occupation!). But I have no time for that, so I'm just linking to a previous post about how to get featured on FBC! Which, for the records, isn't a lifestyle blog. It's funny, usually I receive tons of press releases about, I don't know, furniture stores grand openings on Melrose, design fests, art events obviously, the occasional food-related item, but it's the first time ever I get something about a jewelry site. Even if I was corruptible, I wouldn't review this type of site because you know what? FBC! neither owns nor wear any jewelry! I'm fully disqualified to write about it. Meanwhile, because this made me laugh, I'm going to advise the "pearl necklace" to donate the value of that "product sample" to a food bank. It would be a nice, redeeming gesture.

Lastly, before you get your fun reading the email, in case you admire my innate probity, as I'm sure you are, I'd like to state for the record I am not utterly and integrally incorruptible. For example, if you want to give me a nice 1920s Spanish-style house (hardwood floors throughout) in Los Angeles (metro) and a sweet annuity to help me maintain it, heck! I'd review websites about dog food or tampons.

I'm the webmaster of
I wanted to know if by any chance you would be interested in doing an unbiased review of our site on your blog
If you agree you can choose between receiving a product sample or receiving a payment.
If you choose the product sample instead of the payment the sample is yours to keep and you don’t need to send it back.
The product sample that you can get is a pearl bracelet and you can see it there:
Please let me know if you are interested.
Thank you
G. G
If you want to receive more paid review proposals, just click the following link:
If you don't want to ever receive mails from us, just click the following link:

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Why Isn't Paul Cadmus More Famous?

FBC! is blessed with a great friend who also happens to be a curator of American Art (hi Austen!). Austen taught me more about American Art than anybody else. She's a goldmine of information, but always fun and engaging. In one word, she's not a pedantic academic, but a lively and personable source of knowledge. She recently took me on a rapid tour of the newly reinstalled galleries of American Art at LACMA (in passing, all the re-installed permanent collections in the Ahmanson, Hammer and Art of The Americas buildings there are fabulous to visit, and that includes the Jorge Pardo-designed vitrines).
On this visit with Austen I became totally engrossed in a painting by Paul Cadmus, an artist I was aware of and always thought really interesting, but I never spent more than 5 minutes looking at it.
I'm going to present some details of this painting in 2 separate posts. Meanwhile, I'd like to propose for some future exhibition somewhere in a daring institution something with a large choice of Cadmus paintings, along with some Robert Crumb drawings, Peter Saul paintings, Tom of Finland's paintings, and I'd add some drawings by the French draftsman and caricaturist Albert Dubout (in addition, some caricatures by the Carracci brothers and by Leonardo, but I doubt the loans would be forthcoming). Georg Grosz is too obvious in this context. You found the idea on FBC! first.

Your Social Life In Kippyland

Good evening my dear beloved readership,

This installment of YSL (not to be confused with the logo of a late famous French fashion designer) is a bit late, as FBC! has been away from her laptop all day long. I'm so unused to be outside I almost got pulverized into dust by the sunlight.
The reason I got out this week is we're deep into the wonderland of Kippenberger, as the opening of his retrospective at MoCA is going to occupy both the Grand Avenue location AND the Geffen, which along with the California Conceptualists show (drawn from the permanent collection) will house the mega-installation "The Happy End Of Franz Kafka's Amerika".
FBC! has been awaiting this show for a long, long time, and is delighted it will eventually go to MoMA to show those retarded NYers how Los Angeles curators can originate shows before them.
Oh, oopsie, there already was a Kippenberger retrospective in Europe a couple of years ago, co-curated by Jessica Morgan for the Tate and Doris Krystof for the K21. What can I say? They're always late to catch up in America. And I'm not speaking (only) about the stock market.
Along with Doris a bunch of people are in town, a bunch of German-speaking ones at that. It's a great reminder of how most of the great Los Angeles artists have found a welcoming reception to their works in Europe through the German and Austrian gateways: galleries, kunsthallen, museums, collectors, journals and critics. Speaking of which, Diederich Diederichsen is giving a talk at MoCA on Sunday.

So you've guessed, if you have managed to wrestle an invitation or are simply on the mailing list, the Kippenberger Saturday opening is the one to be.
Now, if for some reason you haven't gotten one, fear not! You can always go to the Andrew Berardini-curated Dave Muller Musical Library at the Armory in Pasadena (and also see the Craig Kauffman drawing show, while you're at it).
There's also an opening at LAXart that promises to be extraordinary boring, and extraordinary also in the sense that I think it's the first time EVER there's a show there I truly, truly have no desire to see. I'm very surprised they are getting Silvia Kolbowski, I mean, it's the type of stuff only Grad students being force-fed the stiff, dogmatic theoricritical™ magma oozing out of the pages of October would maybe dream of organizing. Me, it gives me nightmares. I'd rather go see Resnais's original movie again (and even re-read the Duras book) than sit through an after Alain Resnais "post-structuralist deconstructed take" or whatever they call it. Oh well, only one boring show over more than 2 years of existence, it's not bad, everyone is entitled to a mistake.

And speaking of October, I see Thierry de Duve has an essay in the last one (you can download the pdf for free), and is also one of the scholars in residence at the GRI. Hopefully we'll see him sauntering around town at various openings. As far as theorists go, he's a cool one, and he's also Belgian (you know how much I like Belgium). Welcome Thierry de Duve! Have fun in LA!
De Duve has written about some of FBC!'s private Gods, such as Jeff Wall and Dan Graham, and you see that fabulous transition I'm using just to announce you that finally, finally the Dan Graham retrospective will come to MoCA in February 2009! Save the date!!!!!

Picture from the Kunsthaus Graz website (hi Adam Budak!)

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Stephen Kaltenbach at Anotheryearinla

Stephen Kaltenbach was the other artist whose opening I went to on Saturday. Kaltenbach is a conceptual artist with a deep sense of humor, and FBC! has been a fan of his work since relatively late, actually, thanks to my former boss Lynn Zelevansky. Without her I wouldn't have discovered anotheryearinla and Kaltenbach's work. If by happenstance one of my reader was moneyed, I suggest you buy a nice time-capsule (absolutely randomly: "Content", OK?) and donate it to LACMA.
Kaltenbach is better-known for a series of ads in Artforum in the late 1960s, which I'd love to give you more info about but everything I have here is in hard copy, somewhere in my archives. My archives are a pile of folders, papers and books that currently look like the tower of Pisa, as I need bookshelves. It won't kill you to do a bit of research yourself anyway, so have fun doing it, it's a great artwork. Also should be a pre-requisite for all grad students entering art schools (along with Paul McCarthy's video "Painter").
For his last show he mounted a mini-retrospective of his Time Capsules that looked awesome, and witty, and if you really, really, like me you can donate that "Content" one to me and give another artwork to LACMA. I won't tell.

It was a fun opening as usual at David and Cathy Stone, and FBC! was delighted to meet artists Mark A. Rodriguez and Nadege Monchera there, as well as new art dealer Charlie James (he's opening where Telic used to be in Chinatown), Stephen Kaltenbach himself and the always delightful Peter Frank! Peter is the associate editor for new art magazine 'The" where yours truly may write in the future (NB: no website is listed on the masthead, so I'll let you Google "the", OK?). Both Peter and Stephen gave me tips for my novel, seeing they were in NYC at the right period, and following our fruitful conversation Kaltenbach himself agreed to a cameo appearance in the story. Needless to say, I'm thrilled.
Have fun going to see his show, and don't neglect to ask and see the "canceled" copy of the misprinted catalog (and buy yourself the right one when it's out, Lucy Lippard among others had written an essay). It's like those unique stamps worth tons of money by virtue of never having been put in circulation. Maybe it will end up inside a future time capsule...

Pictures: "Content", "open before my retrospective at Pompidou Center", "Only owner may open", Stephen Kaltenbach in front of "Moment", David Stone and Peter Frank. Artworks titles are approximative, I don't have the checklist with me.

Edgar Arceneaux at Susanne Vielmetter

Saturday FBC! broke off a 2-months long seclusion to attend an equal number of openings. And I got lucky, since both shows proved equally good! Now, when was the last time you scored a 100% satisfaction rate while opening-hopping? Yes, I thought so.
I still don't have much time to write (I do want to finish that damn novel 1st draft before I look for a job full-time), so I'm going to post a few pictures of Edgar Arceneaux's opening. If you clink on the link you will find the press release, and I hope you will go see the show. Meanwhile, I'm going again into seclusion next week, but I will go see galleries int he next couple of days so I may post more pictures if my faithful camera doesn't betray me. Stay tuned!

Pictures: "Circle Disk Rotation", "Moon Creeping Through the Window", "Opiuchus constellation is Laocoon's Serpent", all works made in 2008, Peter Zellner and Aimee Chang admiring "Leo" (2008), their astrological sign, Edgar Arceneaux and Susanne Vielmetter in the project room, with artist Susan Stilton in the background.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Your Social Life At Home And Not Too Far From It

So things are going to be a bit busy this weekend again. First of all, tomorrow is the Downtown Art Walk and I'd advise you swing by El Nopal and say hi to my friend Nadege Monchera-Baer who's showing in the company of Pierre Picot. You can't miss Nadege, she's the classiest Frenchy this side of yours truly. Only taller.
Friday is the opening of the Martin Kersels retrospective at the SMMOA. I urge you to brave the hellish Friday traffic and go see his work, and then have a late dinner at the bar at Anisette.
On Saturday you will have to go across town to see the latest show of FBC! chouchou, Edgar Arceneaux at Susanne Vielmetter. You can also go to Regen and see the Raymond Pettibon show. If you're star-struck, last time I went to one of his opening a Regen Kim Gordon and Thurston Moore were in attendance.
And to prolong the evening in a warm atmosphere that doubles with a time-warp, Stephen Kaltenbach is showing his time capsules at anotheryearinla. The good thing (one amongst many) about the latter is that their openings run until 10 PM.

And what of the other days, are you going to ask, dear FBC! readers? Well, you can go to Chapman University see the Los Angeles incarnation of Documental (see pic above) and to Fullerton see the Aspects of Mel's Hole exhibition curated by Doug Harvey. Both opened last week but I got the info after Your Social Life went up.

Have a great, art-filled weekend!

Pics: Edgar Arceneaux, Documental Invite, Nadege Monchera invite, Kaltenbach time-capsule.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Who Killed Bambi? Republican Symbols and Slaughtered Wildlife

"Murder murder murder
Someone should be angry
The crime of the century
Who shot little Bambi?"

"Who Killed Bambi?" - The Sex Pistols

Behind the clear-framed glasses lurk the exophthalmic eyes of the killer. Where middle America convinces itself that here stands the gentle mother of a Down syndrome kid, the rest of the world sees the assassin of an even gentler wildlife. What did the caribou do to Sarah Palin? The caribou doesn't know she's supposedly "pro-life", Palin took his. The caribou had as much a right to his own life as Palin's last child, but unlike him Palin deemed him unworthy to stay alive.
Did the caribou stand a chance against the babe with the idiotic smile? The caribou is dead, shot in the neck, shot in the groin (Republican males, beware) , his soft fur stained with congealing blood. The caribou lays on what is no longer a white, pure blanket of snow. The caribou's dead eyes cannot see the woman with her child seating behind his dead carcasse. Rudolph - his nose has turned red when blood came rushing through his nostrils as the forceful lead blew his arterial vein - Rudolph is dead, and Santa Claus will be one reindeer short at Christmas. Two shots, and Sarah Palin has deprived children he world over of their Christmas presents. Mommy killed Rudolph, Mommy killed Bambi, someone should be angry.
Palin, mouth open, hair flowing, is looking somewhere to her right, while the hooded kid (we're told she is one of Palin's daughters, but the gender is unidentifiable in this picture) is staring straight at the photographer, straight at us, with a look of pained anxiety. Did Mommy do this? Did Mommy kill Bambi?

The Republicans would love to convince the yet unconvinced that this woman is fit to be the next Vice-President, and, should McCain croak his pipe prematurely, she's one breath away from being president. Yes, the woman brandishing a rifle with a demented look on her face, scantily clad in a stars and stripes bikini (am I the only one to see this as a desecration of the flag? Do you want your beloved flag, America, to wrap someone's crotch? I find this gross), this woman has been picked to run with McCain (UPDATE: that picture, 1st from the bottom, is a fake. Thanks to commenter Joseph for bringing this to my attention).
Frail and diminished, the Republican nominee has felt a need to get a trophy running partner, as only weak old geezers do when the fountain of youth as definitively passed them by. He's so old, he doesn't remember Bambi, Bambi who stood up for America's innocence, America's commercial power, America's cultural values and, let's face it Republican values as well (as far as I know, Walt Disney wasn't exactly a Democrat). But McCain doesn't care, his Party has long ago ditched any real moral values and leanings toward decency to replace them with die-hard obscurantism and ignorance, from Ronald Reagan to George Bush to George W. Bush, from Jessie Helms to Karl Rove and Dick Cheney. In a final assault to clutch to power, they let Sarah Palin kill Bambi. History will tell us if she was just an accessory to the crime, or a full-blown perpetrator, a stooge or main actor. For now, she is the woman who killed Bambi.

Elsewhere Palin poses with what she thinks must be an intense look of concentration on her face while she looks through the visor of a rifle. She succeeds only in looking slightly stupid, with one of her eyes wandering off to one side (don't you find it scary?), while the rifle is thrown directly into the viewer's face, menacing the out-of-frame-spectator with the threat of meaningless yet imminent slaughter.
It is a sight full of violence and fury, acted by an idiot, signifying nothing. Yet significantly meaningful to a casual viewer.

This woman, my dear readers, based on the way she likes to pose in photographs, the faces she makes when she does so, her love of displaying firearms and dead animals as props wherever she wants to symbolize anything, this woman stands for all the world to see as the careful object of a mise-en-scene destined to be only that: a meticulously arranged tableau of symbolic props. She is the vacuous recipient of the Republican male fantasy: neither plain nor ugly, none too smart (we hear she spend 6 years wandering through 6 different universities to finally graduate), ready to espouse any conservative slogans and more than willing to force her agenda on people's throats (creationism, banning books from libraries), regardless of the Constitutional legality of the means she employs.
Gloria Steinem wrote a great piece in the Los Angeles Times about the choice of Palin for the republican ticket, that I can only encourage all of you to read if you haven't. (Here's one of my favorite quote from her article: "This isn't the first time a boss has picked an unqualified woman just because she agrees with him and opposes everything most other women want and need").

Meanwhile FBC! is horrified and fascinated by Palin's inclination to be seen in photographs posing amongst the corpses of dead animals, whether they have been freshly killed or have been taxidermied . This is a woman who, no doubt, would she find a litter of 5 or 6 kitten, wouldn't hesitate to kill them with her own hands, right in front of her own children ( "See honey, this is how you get rid of innocent little animals, just smash their head against a wall. We'll get the help to clean up after, don't worry").
Indeed, she killed Bambi.
And Rudolph.
Given the opportunity, she'd add Simba too.
Winnie The Pooh's hide is sprawled on Palin's official Alaskan couch, while a dead King crab looks on. Message: the Alaskan governor is carnivorous, and has aristocratic (that is, anti-American) aspirations. Yes, you've read it right, I said "aristocratic".
You see, only kings and aristocrats (that is, non-elected members of an obsolete, anti-democratic order) used to pose with the spoils of their hunting slaughters. Louis XIV, who waged countless wars and lost most of them, used to multiply the representations of his likeness absorbed in hunting massacres, to symbolize the victories he couldn't obtain at home and abroad. This absolute autocrat needed to pretend to be victorious over dead animals to legitimize his political, diplomatic and economic failures. Versailles (and nowadays the Louvre, which houses most of Louis XIV's collection) was full of gigantic paintings with Louis XIV towering over dead boars and deers.
Now, Sarah Palin, who doesn't know what a Vice-President does and whose candor in that regard should suffice to dismiss her from the Republican ticket at once, Sarah Palin triumphantly poses over dead hapless animals, acting as the new Republican smokescreen over the inability of the Party to rule the country. Indeed, the last 8 years had thoroughly demonstrated it, lest people forget the Bush administration comes from the same Party as the McCain-Palin ticket .They waged a costly war we cannot win, they depleted the country coffers at the expense of the populace's health and access to education, but hey, they deserve to win the election because they nominated a former war prisoner and a mother who has the guts to kill Bambi!

But however we want to ridicule Sarah Palin, her vulgar outfits, her bloodthirsty antics and lack of education and culture, we have to take her seriously. This woman is dangerous. She already outshines McCain, "the war hero" (in passing, being a prisoner of war makes you automatically a hero? According to that logic, the prisoners in Guantanamo are...what?). What the McCain-Palin ticket has understood from the long fratricide struggle between Clinton and Obama was that elections are no longer decided on issues, experience, knowledge, programs and serious thinking about how to get the country out of the nightmarish quagmire America has been plunged into by the Bush presidency and the Republican Party .
No, elections are now won and Presidents are made only on the strength of symbols and good PR management.
We've spent several months watching whether the race symbol was going to win over the gender symbol. Now we have to see how the Obama campaign can use different symbols to benefit the Democratic Party, but first and foremost the American people, and defeat the geriatric "war hero" and his gun-totting Barbie doll.

I suggest simple slogans, effective examples and an aggressive stance against the Republican Party and what it has done to America over the last few years.
Meanwhile, let's forget about race symbols (Robert Mugabe is black, and see what he's done to his country) and gender symbols (Margaret Thatcher is a woman, and looked how she ransacked Britain) and if we have to use some let's focus on the symbols that make America so great at home: free speech, equality, access to healthcare, education, homes and jobs for all. And let's make America welcome abroad again: a foreign policy that is humane and not forceful, the manufacturing of cultural values that could become America's coolest export again. Let's not perpetuate the crime of the century, let's not kill Bambi all over again.

The various pictures of Palin above have been sent to me via email without any credit line. I believe the one with the caribou and the one with the bear and the crab may come from Associated Press, but I really don't know. I'd be happy to indicate credit if someone can point me in the right direction.
Meanwhile, apologies to the Sex Pistol for linking their song to Sarah Palin.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

And Don't Forget Tonight...

Because I did forget to add the following to yesterday's Your Social Life post:
Tonight there's the One Night Stand Hotel Art Show at the Beverly Laurel Motel, starting at 7PM until 11PM. I'm linking to Metromix because the Myspace page maintained by the hosts sucks, unfortunately. It should be fun, probably far less conceptual than the show curated by Hans-Ulrich Obrist at the Carlton Palace Hotel on Boulevard Raspail in Paris in 1994 (I was there, it was before he was famous when he was still a nice guy). It was in a small room, and a very good show. Anyway, have fun there tonight.

Also I mentioned it last week this Sunday is the benefit for LAXart. Tickest range from $150 to $500 and get you one swell photograph donated by some of Los Angeles best artists (including the mayor???), all for a good cause!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Your Social Life At Home: Meet The Debutarts!

It's back to school heavy duty openings weekend! Basically, you guys are going to maddeningly increase your carbon footprint and scramble all over LA for the new season's round of openings. I hereby declare we should officially call the Fall in LA "The Season". Sounds very London circa 1895, except that we're more likely to see celebutards around than Society ladies (we don't have those in Los Angeles).
In fact from now on we should also call the freshly-churned-out-of-Grad-school new faces roaming the streets (I mean the unique street) of the swanky Culver City art district the Debutarts! New on the market, hopeful, hustling and peddling their modest wares to their distracted former art school instructors, in the vain hope those are going to connect them to powerful art dealers. Eager to get free drinks and start spewing theoretically critical utterances to impress uppity gallerinas and maybe pick up a bed partner or two. Ahhhhhhh ... Youth!*

So if you want to avoid the great unwashed, I'd say stay home with a good movie, a bottle of wine, some good food and a cat to warm your feet. Otherwise, it's pretty dumb to go and hope you will see shows: you're going to waddle in a mass of loud bodies, many of them who will address you every 5 seconds or so to express their happiness at seeing you there, and have you been at Blum and Poe yet? Oh gosh, we have to rush, we have to meet [Here, drop 7 names in a row, at least 4 of them being semi-locally known/3 years out of Grad school youngsters, 2 others nationally known middle-aged ones and the last one a well-liked Cal Arts instructor] in Chinatown/West Hollywood/at Father's Office for burgers/in the bathroom of [redacted to fill your imagination] to do some blow/blow a famous gay art star.

But you won't see any art, there will be too many people in front of it blocking your view and busy schmoozing and trying to figure out where and when to go get dinner. If by that time (way past dinner time) you're in Chinatown, chances are you may wait in line at [insert name of whichever of the 2 bars you're thinking about here] for some cokehead art dealers to get out of the restroom so you can at last take that leak. The 7 free beers you drank between China Arts Object and Sister are starting to have an effect.

Anyway, you won't listen to Auntie Frenchy, so if you feel you absolutely have to go out this weekend, avoid the Debutarts. Instead you should:

- Absolutely check Christie Frields show at Dave Patton's who's relocating his gallery to Chinatown. Christie is a very interesting sculptor whose work deserves a much wider recognition than she currently enjoys. Go support Christie!
- Lisa Lapinski has a new show opening at Richard Telles
- The 2 shows at Steve Turner Gallery (I adore their programming and their recent director, Carol Ann Klonarides, but their website sucks).
- And Julian Hoeber at Blum and Poe.
- While you are in Culver City you can check the new Roberts and Tilton space with a group show.

That's all for this weekend. I know there's no way you can go to all those places and see the art and schmooze during the 6 to 9 PM window of opportunity, so please drive safely, OK?

* this is a subtle reference to a very famous work by a no less famous Los Angeles artist, and this artwork served as a design for a "mainstream" alternative band. If you find the reference, I buy you coffee when I get out my writing reclusion.

Monday, September 1, 2008

CNN, Thou Shalt Learn Your Greek Columns

FBC! had a Labor Day battling migraine and is off to an early bedtime, but I had a quick look at the CNN website (wanted to check on hurricane Gustav) and saw this. I'm sure only a nerdy art historian would notice it while in the midst of a triptan-induced high, with a stiff neck to boot, but hey, you ignorant CNN reporter going by the byline Anthee Carassava: the Parthenon columns are not "Corinthians", no. The Parthenon is a DORIC temple, hence the columns are topped with Doric capitals. The Parthenon was built during the Archaic era, hence its Doric-ness, it's a couple of century too early to have any Corinthian stuff in it.
If you have to put details in about the columns, check your art historical stuff. Though Ms. Carassava writes for the NYT where they used to get people to fabricate stuff altogether, so I guess one Corinthian column here and there on CNN doesn't resonate as an egregious mistake. Cool, then maybe the Elgin Marbles are just kiddie toys the British Museum can keep, as tourists could trip on them while looking up the Parthenon's Corinthian capitals.

Images courtesy of this flickr user.