April 13, 2012 by Will Bundy
I think even the most avid Instagram users were a little shocked when they saw the billion dollar price tag put on the photo-sharing network by internet juggernaut Mark Zuckerberg’s Facebook empire. But looking at it from their perspective, the decision doesn’t seem all that strange. Instagram was becoming ubiquitous, essential, indispensable, and to their credit, they had found a way to intertwine what they did with Facebook and the iPhone–two similarly indispensable products– seamlessly.
Former entertainment lawyer Bob Lefsetz tends to stick to talking about the music biz in his now-famous newsletter. But please believe there are parallels between what Kevin Systrom and your favorite artists do. At the end of the day, it’s about putting the work in on your craft and creating something people love. Read on for some wisdom from Lefsetz on everything Instagram did right. For those pursuing big things, this one’s pretty essential.
April 13, 2012 BY Will Bundy
April 9, 2012 by Max Gibson
In one of the more progressive initiatives to directly reach the people in recent memory, Argentinian artist Raul Lemesoff has created a tank vehicle simply aimed to educate the masses. Equipping a 1979 Ford Falcon with a number of book shelves attached to the car’s exterior, Lemesoff has created the Arma De Instruccion Masiva, better known as the Weapon of Mass Instruction. Frequenting various destinations throughout Buenos Aires, Lemesoff’s vehicle offers passersby the ability to take a book for free, for keeps, adding to the general knowledge of Buenos Aires’ book reading public.
April 9, 2012 BY Max Gibson
April 4, 2012 by Max Gibson
Broadway Boogie Woogie (1943)
Describing his artistic pursuits as as “a search for beauty in its most simple (honest) form: line, shape and color,” the work of Piet Mondrian remains influential to the development of abstract art in the 20th century. Most recognized for his bold, grid-based paintings, much of Mondrian’s work dealt with theories of life, spirituality and the celestial. Distilling his work down to the primary colors of red, blue, and yellow along with black and white, Piet’s paintings sought to visualize the world through the use of vertical and horizontal lines. Relating the dualities of life through the perpendicular lines, much of Mondrian’s work represents spiritual energy through his own artistic lens.
A major point of reference in commercial design as well as popular culture, the influence of Mondrian’s paintings can also be seen in the work of fashion designer Yves Saint Laurent, who used Mondrian’s designs to formulate a variety of iconic dresses in 1965. Although it may appear hard to decipher the messages that lie within the work of the artist, it appears as though Mondrian maintained a continuous curiosity about the world throughout his career, once famously stating, “I don’t want pictures, I want to find things out.”
April 4, 2012 BY Max Gibson
April 3, 2012 by Max Gibson
Photography by Rebekkah Castellanos
The vibe, the music, the atmosphere- it’s all important. But at the end of the day, a great party begins and ends with great people. Friday night marked our eleventh celebration, and in our mind, provided us with an opportunity to break from the norm. This one was a little different, a little weirder, and a little looser, so for those of you that made it out, thank you for being a part of it. Thank you for being so cool, so open-minded, so diverse and yet so united.
And while After Hours was, in a sense, the first function we pulled off on our own, the night would not have been possible without the help of a few special people. To our bartenders Claudia and her team, thank you for your insight and professionalism. To Sydni and Whitney, thank you for holding down the door. To As Is, thank you for once again providing the soundtrack to another special night, and to Oscar, for always coming through in the clutch. Much love to Rebekkah too for capturing the moments as she does so well, and to Gino for providing us with a space to make it happen. Thank you again for supporting Wine & Bowties. Let’s keep this good thing going.
April 3, 2012 BY Max Gibson
March 27, 2012 by Will Bundy
At first glance, the works from Chinese artist Lu Xinjian‘s City DNA series could just as easily be arbitrary patterns, intricate, colorful graphics along the lines of Keith Haring’s. But the titles of each work offers a bit more insight into the process behind its creation. Beginning with Google Earth, Xinjian turns the aerial plots of some of the world’s most famous cities into stencils in Photoshop, before painting each by hand with colors based on national or local flags. As the title suggests, each work in City DNA carries with it the distinct imprint of the metropolis it’s abstracted from, allowing the work to double as a fascinating study in urban planning and the strange, often haphazard ways in which cities tend to develop. A pretty dope concept, if you ask me.
March 27, 2012 BY Will Bundy
March 15, 2012 by Will Bundy
It seems only logical that cars would be a recurring theme in Andy Warhol’s work. With pop art honing in on, and poking fun at the implications of mass-produced consumer culture, the automobile represented one of American industry’s biggest triumphs and most impactful contributions on a global scale. Alongside the soup cans and coke bottles, then, came numerous paintings, drawings and installations featuring Cadillacs, Fords or Beamers, a motif as emblematic of the 20th century’s growing consumer society as any.
The Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh, naturally enough, is celebrating Andy’s fascination with cars with Warhol and Cars: American Icons, showcasing a career-spanning collection of works touching on vehicles of all shapes, sizes and colors. From early fashion drawings from his pre-pop days in the late ’40s and ’50s to the iconic and haunting car crash prints of his Five Deaths series, the exhibition uses cars as a means to explore not only Andy’s meditations on the theme at hand, but also to delve into his development as an artist over the course of a career. The most notable item in the collection though, might be the 1977 BMW M1 art car, commissioned by BMW and hand-painted by Warhol in all of 23 minutes. For those of us who can’t make it to Pittsburgh anytime soon, peep the gallery below.
March 15, 2012 BY Will Bundy
March 9, 2012 by Max Gibson
From the mind of Duane Hanson, a Minnesota-born artist whose poignant life-like sculptures brought him fame in the 1960′s. Known for depicting gritty scenes of life’s not-so-glamorous incidents, large scale pieces such as Accident (1967) depicting a violent motorcycle crash, and Race Riot (1969-1971) showcased Hanson’s ability to create astoundingly realistic environments using a variety of artistic materials.
Combining fiberglass with polyester resin and bronze, alongside other materials, Hanson constructed his sculptures with meticulous precision. Choosing to create softer, less jarring scenes in the ’70s, Hanson turned his attention to middle America, situating realistic people in real environments rather than constructing traditional installations. Pieces entitled Supermarket Shopper, Hardhat and Woman Eating typified Hanson’s departure from the graphic scenes he once created in the sixties. Passing away at the age of 70, Hanson and his work remain a significant touchstone for the tradition of hyperrealism in art.
March 9, 2012 BY Max Gibson
March 6, 2012 by Will Bundy
To call Annie Leibovitz‘s portrait work iconic is almost redundant. Aside from the stature of her subjects– they tend to be among the most famous and celebrated icons on the planet– her best work is effecting and poignant to the point that it’s become inescapable. So when Annie announced last year that her next book would feature no formal portraits, it came as a shock to more than a few. A period of personal turmoil and financial crisis found Leibovitz in need of a departure– literally, stylistically, perhaps even spiritually. A chance encounter on a trip with her daughters to Niagara Falls and a few shots snapped at the home of Emily Dickinson would soon inspire an open-ended photographic journey spanning the country, as well as the next few years.
Pilgrimage gave Leibovitz the chance to funnel her inspirations, and her reverence for American mythology into a truly distinctive collection. There are breathtaking shots of the American sublime, from the edge of Niagara Falls to Yosemite, but probably most striking are the images from inside the homes and lives of Leibovitz’ heroes. Inspired by a list she once made with Susan Sontag, Leibovitz set out to photograph objects and places that held special significance in those lives: the blood-stained gloves Lincoln wore the night he was assassinated, a box of pastels used by Georgia O’Keeffe, or the couch in Sigmund Freud’s office.
Though not a single image features a person, it’s hard not to feel that some of these homages constitute portraits all the same. These tiny fragments from the lives of people so ingrained in the American psyche seem to emanate something profound, about where we’ve come from collectively, and where Leibovitz comes from as an individual. Pilgrimage is available in hardcover now, and the works from the book will be on display at the Smithsonian in D.C. until May 20th.
March 6, 2012 BY Will Bundy
March 3, 2012 by Max Gibson
Sharing his disdain for the exploits of the advertising industry, world famous street artist Banksy recently offered this public service announcement through his website. Highlighting the intrusive efforts of advertisers, Banksy’s insight comes at a time where the ubiquity of advertising is unprecedented. Data from a New York Times article found that a person living in a city sees up to 5,000 advertising messages a day, compared to 2,000 messages thirty years ago.
Interestingly enough, Jack Lowe of Huh Magazine, relates the irony of Banksy’s statement, in that Banksy advertises his messages to people in a similar fashion to the advertisers he condemns. Do you agree with Banksy’s opinions? Are advertisements too intrusive, and if so, in what way? Also, I wonder what makes “good” or at least non-invasive advertising work? As always, all thoughts are welcome.
March 3, 2012 BY Max Gibson
March 2, 2012 by Max Gibson
Celebrated as the pioneer of the Creative Revolution in advertising throughout the 1960s and early ’70s, George Lois has remained a seminal figure to the evolution of the advertising industry. Best known for his iconic Esquire covers, Lois’ rebellious yet deliberate approach to advertising catapulted him to the pinnacle of his field, while making more than a few of his clients quite wealthy. In many ways, Lois is the inspiration for Donald Draper, Mad Men’s stoic protagonist, although Lois would beg to differ.
In this five minute short, Lois lends his insight to young people in regards to the creative process. Damn Good Advice (For People With Talent) is Lois’ latest book and reveals many of the lessons Lois’ learned through his experiences as an art director and ad man. Highlighting the importance of always being outrageous, while also detailing his thoughts on the sources of creativity, Lois’ wisdom shines through in this video, and even more so in his book.
March 2, 2012 BY Max Gibson
February 28, 2012 by Max Gibson
Photography By James Reynolds
What would your last meal be on your last day on Death Row? Would you eat like a king, or would you keep it simple? Would you eat something healthy, or would you go all out? I suppose whatever you did wouldn’t matter too much considering the circumstances. Nonetheless, these thoughts crossed my mind when considering the photography of James Reynolds, a London based photographer who was equally fascinated with the dining choices of prison inmates’ last meal.
“At first I just wanted to see what these meals looked like on the iconic prison tray. I wanted to get the viewer to think, or have an opinion,” stated Reynolds. Capturing images of inmates’ last meals on what appears to be prison trays from around 1974, Reynolds’ photos bring up a variety of questions. Personally, I wonder what the inmates looked like, what crimes they committed and how it must have felt eating their last meal ever? A thought-provoking collection in itself, Reynolds’ work is a sobering reminder of the finality of life at the end of Death Row.
February 28, 2012 BY Max Gibson
February 27, 2012 by Will Bundy
It seems only fitting that Terry Richardson‘s work would finally make its way back to his native Hollywood. There’s something so definitively Hollywoodish running through everything he does. The whole fascination with celebrity, the spontaneous portraits, the ubiquitous thumbs up– a lot of his work toes a funny line between vapid and genuine. The general tone of unpretentiousness is what makes Terry endearing, and the simplicity of his work makes it kind of undeniable. At the very least, it keeps him jet-setting around the world, snapping iconic portraits of just about everybody relevant.
Terrywood, Richardson’s recently opened solo show at OHWOW Gallery, is something of a love letter to the strange culture that is Hollywood. The images themselves feature neon signs, bright red lipstick, or crowds of paparazzi– fixtures of Hollywood life that help to convey the hype, the hollowness and the humor of it all. Like any good pop art, it’s subversive and clever, finding a balance between sarcasm and actual reverence for the particular slice of Americana it takes on. Even without the more blatant giveaways, say the custom-designed Oscar statue with Terry’s face on it or the hipper-than-thou list of attendees at Friday’s opening (Sasha Grey, Odd Future, James Franco, Tom Ford, Ariel Pink), Terry’s fingerprints would still be recognizable all over this one.
February 27, 2012 BY Will Bundy
February 27, 2012 by Max Gibson
The other day a friend of mine shared a realization he recently had. He told me, “100 years from now no one will remember me, the things I’ve done or the decisions I make”. My response was that the things we do with our time on earth will dictate who remembers us and for how long. The thought is something I’ve pondered for a while, but is also worth thinking about when considering the type of art we create. Is what we’re making timeless, or for the moment? I didn’t quite mean to take such a long winded route to get to the work of Bob Marley, but in essence, to me it seems like Bob is one of those seminal figures who people will remember 100 years from now. Uncovering archival footage alongside interviews with the people who knew him best, director Kevin Macdonald has created a documentary celebrating the life and career of one of the world’s greatest artists. Set to be released worldwide on April* 20th, I’d recommend some good tree and some snacks to accompany your viewing session.
February 27, 2012 BY Max Gibson