Art August 31, 2009 By Jennifer Pappas
zanecover2 Zane Lewis
Paradise Regained, Zane Lewis. 2009.

zane title Zane Lewis

Leave it to the Wall Street Journal to really put the heat on a guy. Zane Lewis, an emerging artist based out of Brooklyn and San Antonio, experienced it firsthand several years ago following the publication of a little article. Named one of ten “23-Year-Old-Masters” in the 2006 story, Lewis garnered some serious artistic accolades, and a hearty buzz of expectations.
     Yet three years later, working under pressure and status, Lewis still appears keen to the challenge. A new solo exhibit, Watch Me Slowly Death, is scheduled to open this month at New York’s Mixed Greens Gallery, right in time to kick off the fall art season in Chelsea.
     The exhibit will feature a series of mixed media paintings on Plexiglas, each piece a not-so playful juxtaposition aimed at the consumer excesses and youth-obsessed idolatry of our culture. Each untitled piece depicts luxe and glossy advertisements torn from the pages of a fashion magazine, overlain with neon, graffiti-like drippings of paint. The images are instantly recognizable (for who hasn’t seen those ads for Chanel No. 5?) yet slightly distorted, like contemporary idols warped by the sun. Religious iconography, mirrors, and collage are also used to further the themes of death, power, and decay. The show is a mature, subtle investigation of what it means to live and consume in the face of global economic crisis, inevitably raising many questions. Is it still possible to live humbly? Does recession ultimately lead to rebirth?

1 2 3 4 5


Music August 28, 2009 By Timothy Gunatilaka

filler Murder Mystery

murder cover Murder Mystery
Photography by Alex Marvar

filler Murder Mysterymmystery title Murder Mystery

Last Friday, we went to the sweltering, bricked confines of New York’s Mercury Lounge to check out the Antlers perform their recently released album Hospice. And while we cannot emphasize enough how magnetic and magnificent the trio’s headlining set sounded, we’ve already amply pronounced our affections here. On that account, we also wanted to pay our respects to the band playing right before the Antlers: Murder Mystery. The Brooklyn quartet infuses a bit of Americana into their catchy and carefree songs, which call to mind the old indie guard of Luna and Pavement. On tracks like “Lost” (streamed below), Jeremy Coleman’s baritone, the intricate interplay of keyboard and guitar, and the buoyant bass and drums rise and converge in a beguiling tension whose sunny disposition nevertheless serves the spirit of summer romance well in these waning days of the season.

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Murder Mystery – Lost

Fashion August 28, 2009 By Editors
tomorrowland cover Tomorrowland
Black mini dress Rock and Republic Cuff Jessica Kagen Cushman Boots Alexander WangGloves Lauren Urstadt

1 2 3 4 5

Books August 27, 2009 By Valerie Palmer

cover2 Berlin   Lou Reed + Julian Shnabel
berlin title Berlin   Lou Reed + Julian Shnabel

West Berlin was ripe with glam rock, urban blight, and Baader-Meinhof terrorists in the 1970s. A walled city cut off from the West, its inhabitants simmered in a pressure cooker of art, drugs, and leftist politics, so it’s no surprise the place captured Lou Reed’s imagination. Back then, he had never set foot in Berlin, but the city became his muse for a while; its dilapidated post-war rubble, drug-fueled dysfunction, and the massive concrete wall that ran through its heart inspired a story. Except for Reed, the story was about the walls that come between people or, more specifically, couples.
     The Berlin in Reed’s mind took on operatic proportions, as did the album he named for the city, which chronicles the rise and fall of a love affair, and the requisite drugs, domestic abuse, sex, and suicide you can expect from the patron saint of the underground. Over the course of Berlin’s ten songs, things go from bad to worse for the narrator as his love, Caroline, does too many drugs, goes a little nuts, and tries to kill herself.
     When Berlin was released in 1973, it achieved zero critical success, but thirty-three years later its moment arrived. Reed’s homage to dysfunctional love and self-destruction finally got its due in 2006 when he performed the album in its entirety with a thirty-five-piece ensemble at a warehouse in Brooklyn. Artist/filmmaker Julian Schnabel captured it all on film, and now Rizzoli has captured the film in a book.

Next


Design, Greenspace August 26, 2009 By Hannah Bergqvist
campersbike coverside Campers Bike
Image courtesy of Kevin Cyr

campersbike title Campers Bike

These days, it seems there’s a new eco-invention every week. Maybe you’ve already heard of the solar-powered eco-camper, the vegetable oil-fueled bio-Trekker , or even the Emergency Response Studio. If you have, then there’s no need telling you that the RV no longer has to be that gas guzzler antipode of sustainable travel that it used to. If not – well, now you know. And there’s even more….
     Boston-based artist Kevin Cyr has created another type of green RV: the Camper Bike. Secured on a steady three-wheeler the camper is a human-driven sustainable RV that can be taken for a ride by a single pedaler. The inside is still under construction but once finished the Camper Bike will be equipped with the most necessary amenities for a few days on the road, making it a neat alternative holiday house — that is, if you don’t mind traveling solo. On his website Cyr describes the camper as a sculptural art piece, even if it is fully functioning. As such there might be little luck in wishing for one of your own anytime soon. But who knows, if Cyr gets a good response maybe he’ll put the camper into production.

Next

Architecture, Events August 25, 2009 By Ryan Grim
expo cover Shanghai Expo
Detail of Korean Pavilion by Mass Studies

shanghai title Shanghai Expo

Decades ago, long before an architect could tweet his latest design to bloggers and PR people, world’s fairs were a big deal. The World’s Columbian Exposition, held in Chicago for six months in 1893, attracted 27 million people, about half the U.S. population at the time. Any kid living in or around New York City in 1939 or 1964 no doubt begged his parents for a ticket to the two world’s fairs in Queens. But ask someone today how psyched they are for Expo 2010 in Shanghai, and you’re bound to get a blank stare. While world’s fairs have long since lost their cachet, countries are still sponsoring praiseworthy pavilions. Here are the ones we think will make the biggest splash in Shanghai.

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8

Art August 24, 2009 By Jennifer Pappas
aida cover Aїda Ruilova
Still from Meet the Eye, 2009. Courtesy of Aїda Ruilova and Salon 94, New York.

aida title Aїda Ruilova

Aїda Ruilova is no stranger to the voyeuristic, often macabre storytelling devices made famous by experimental film icons Sergei Eisenstein and Maya Deren. Influenced equally by structural cinema of the 1960s and vampire movies of the 1970s, the New York-based filmmaker-artist appears at home working with contrasting styles. Ruilova’s short films employ a series of B-movie horror tactics, avant-garde editing, and abstract montages of gesture and sound. The repetitive use of fragmented dialogue (“Which one is me?”) and symbolic imagery (peepholes and basements) add complicated layers of self-awareness to people caught in nightmarish situations. Despite the filmmaker’s mysterious characters and affinity for disorientation, the work is not without pathos. Viewers find themselves slyly twisted into the role of witness and accomplice, furthering the eerie spectrum of the camera’s gaze. Meet the Eye is Ruilova’s latest work, created as part of the Hammer Museum’s Artist Residency Program and appropriately shot in Los Angeles with two of the city’s cult figures. Artist Raymond Pettibon and fringe-actress Karen Black play a couple trapped in a hotel room. The film treads a thin line between mental confusion and sheer illusion. Pettibon monotones the same lines over and over, Black anguishes theatrically about the room, attempting to recall a fatal memory just beyond her grasp.

1 2 3 4


Art, Greenspace August 21, 2009 By Santiago Vanegas
santiago cover Antarctica
Photography courtesy of Santiago Vanegas

antarctica title Antarctica

It’s been seven months since I returned from Antarctica and I still can’t fathom that I was there. It’s like going to another planet. Not that I’ve been to another planet, but I can imagine that this is the closest I’ll ever get to one. Ironically, being in Antarctica has probably been the closest I’ve felt to Earth. The experience of being there has generated a series of extreme opposing images. First, there’s the scale: massive landscape, tiny human. And then there’s the sobering inverse: towering human threat to nature, delicate and vulnerable, polar (global) ecology. There was also the unforgiving Drake Passage crossing, our 240-foot ship at the mercy of thirty- to fifty-foot waves. Life, death. The list goes on. It’s humbling. People ask me, “Why go to Antarctica?” There are many reasons. Some of which I have yet to discover. I wanted to go to Antarctica because soon it will be a different place. Just in the last few years, ice shelves the size of entire countries have broken off the continent and are melting into the ocean. Antarctica is dying. I had to go, absorb, and tell a story. And then, of course, there’s the magnificence of Antarctica. Such an unlikely and complex place. I guess you could say that my reasons for going are Death and Beauty.

1 2 3 4 5 6 7

Art August 19, 2009 By Nikola Vasakova

page1 Maurizio Anzerimaurizio title Maurizio Anzeri

Embroidery never seemed as dark and suggestive as in the art of London-based Italian artist Maurizio Anzeri. In his meticulous work, he transforms old discarded family photographs into three-dimensional objects with intense psychological evocations. “The intimate human action of embroidery is a ritual of making and reshaping stories and the history of these people,” he says. Anzeri uses synthetic hair as his thread of choice, which he stitches and sews to create a material and metaphorical medium representing bodily boundaries and biographies. The portraits he creates are both beautiful and unnerving. Masked faces of someone’s long-forgotten relatives radiate new expression, which reinvents old stories through an unexpected and new visual language. Last year, Anzeri was selected as one of thirty emerging artists to be considered for the 2008 Sovereign European Art Prize, and recently his work was added to the renowned Saatchi Online Collection, a digital platform for upcoming young talents. This fall, he‘ll be showing alongside six other artists who explore the bounderies of conventional photography, titled Starting With a Photograph, at the Michael Hoppen Contemporary in London from September 10 – October 12.

1 2 3 4 5

Music August 18, 2009 By Lily Moayeri
penate cover Jack Peñate
XL Recordings

penate title Jack Peñate

Jack Peñate is desperate for you to forget his first album, Matinee, and focus on his new one. In case the message wasn’t clear enough, it is right there in the title, Everything Is New. Peñate has reinvented himself as a brand new entity. Gone is the self-indulgent, snobbish, and superior attitude of the debut. In its place is carefully crafted modern-day soul — not in the conventional sense, however, but the British interpretation of it. This means emotive vocals that aren’t overwrought with vibrato. Rather, Peñate showcases his vocal abilities with empathy and genuineness of emotion that have no choice but to ring true. Afrobeats, handclaps, and scatterings of a gospel choir charge these tastefully melodic songs. Driving world rhythms are the identifiers of “Let’s All Die” and “Give Yourself Away”. But it is the heralding horns and tough dance pace of “Be The One” and the bold statements of “Tonight’s Today”, balanced against island-tinged percussion, that give the album its bite. With Everything Is New, Peñate has redeemed himself enough to inspire us to hit “reset” where he’s concerned.

Next