Aaron, my happy-go-lucky NYU side kick and sweet friend met me for breakfast at Veselka. We ate scrambled egg and sausage. I had the Chinese brew to fortify me.
We walked to The Bowery, stopping in at the Bowery Hotel for a nose before heading to the New Museum where I bought an ‘artists membership’. We made our way to the 5th floor by elevator to the education suite then walked down the elegant stairs from gallery to gallery.
George Condo:Mental States. George, never a great favorite of mine. Too prolific. Too gimmicky. Unfocused.
I was wrong.
I actually really loved the great wall of work on the 4th Floor. A huge salon type hanging, magnificent, bold and confronting.
I adored the Queen paintings, loved the monochrome line paintings, loved the magnificence.
Perhaps he deserves the great wall of work? Few artists do.
Salon hanging? What’s that? You may well ask…
Between 1748–1890 The Salon de Paris was the greatest annual or biannual art event in the Western world.
Called `Salon hanging´or `Petersburger hanging´ pictures of all sizes are hung closely side by side and above each other, sometimes in several rows from the ground to the ceiling with no obvious curatorial rational.
This exhibition style was fashionable until the first decade of the 20th century when curators and academics like Julius Meier-Graefe suggested a more reduced and conceptual hanging method – leading to the gospel of the`white cube´.
Salon hanging never disappeared completely.
Nowadays curators choose it from time to time for specific presentations like the upper gallery of the George Condo show.
The lower gallery showed the work of Lynda Benglis. I enjoyed this unusual, eclectic show presenting mostly work from the 1970’s. I will go back and look at it more closely next week.
My great friend Maury Rubin has one of his very popular Bird Bath bakery/coffee shops at the New Museum. We drank his coffee and ate his pretzel croissant.
I was moved by the video installation in the basement, by far the most interesting work in the gallery.
The woman who plays Marilyn Monroe lived near me in Hollywood and I would see her daily, pulling on her tatty wig, wearing her sad, soiled, Seven Year Itch dress, pan handling outside Grauman’s Chinese Theatre.
If the picture of her as you enter the gallery wasn’t so absurdly priced I would have bought it. The best thing about this show is just how much dignity art has bestowed upon these little more than fancy dressed vagrants.
The gallery boy…Jacob. So sweet. Worth going back for.
Later, Dan and I headed up town to see a preview of The Motherfucker With The Hat. A very poorly staged, almost televisual play about Alcoholics Anonymous starring Chris Rock and that guy from Station Agent. There were some good lines…when you could hear them.
The problem with these ‘actors’ from TV is that none of them can project. All of them perform from their throats and I predict none of them will have a voice by the end of the week.
Live performance in a theatre (without a microphone inches from the mouth) needs technical training and rehearsal. None of their voices were warmed up. Consequently, many of the adequately written lines were lost.
Odd listening to a play about sobriety. Odd.
Dinner at Italian restaurant.
Met up with Aaron and Woody and ended up at Bedlam on Ave C where Bravo’s Andy Cohen (of all people) was ‘spinning’. Met Dana and her hot friend Matt who has a web site called www.fridaypuppy.com. Had a great time. Many intriguing men to chat with.
In bed by 3am. I drank 4 (not very good for me) Red Bull.
I love New York!