Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Shaping the Qualitative Phase of Contemporary Chinese Art

Shaping the Qualitative Phase of Contemporary Chinese Art

The Zhuangzi is heady stuff: a text pre-dating the country of China that advocates a fluid, flexible, pragmatic approach to existence. The artistic results of a collaborative residency between the University of Minnesota and Beijing Artists' Village addresses the Zhuangzi from a contemporary point of view, examining the relationships between objects, space, and bodies, and the communicative qualities birthed within the physical states created by their juxtaposition.


Location Info:

The Soap Factory                        
514 2nd St. SE
Minneapolis, MN  55414

The Freedom of Young Photographers

June 17, 2015

The Freedom of Young Photographers


For a time I earned my living as a picture editor at a weekly newspaper, then at a magazine. I loved working with text and photo or, more precisely, with photographers. As a rule, they were interested in pictures and language, too—the ones I knew read a great deal, as a way of relaxing, no doubt, from the demands of producing visual work. The photographers with whom I became friends were, for the most part, fascinated by my writer’s way of looking at things, and how it differed from their own. But I never felt that the difference was immense; to me, they were writers in motion, finding stories with their cameras.

I don’t work with photographers as closely as I once did, and I miss the daily exchange. But sometimes I teach or critique up-and-comers, and that means a great deal to me: photography is still discovering its power and limitations as a medium. Last winter, I spent some time at Yale’s Graduate School of Art. The M.F.A. photography students were diverse, articulate, and excited about what they were doing, and their excitement had something to do with their freedom: they could make or remake photography any way they wanted. It’s been a long time since Henri Cartier-Bresson told us about the “decisive moment,” and since Robert Frank loosened that moment up even further. While interested, for sure, in the history of photography, the New Haven-based students I met leaned less to Frank’s documentary approach than to what is being called, just now, photo-poetics—picture-making that might include the “decisive moment” but eschews journalism. The moment that the students pursued was often real but did nothing to obscure photography’s surrealism or the history of conceptual and commercial art. (One student’s best work made a near still out of video.)

I spent several days, off and on, with those kids—who have now graduated from the program and are exhibiting their work this month in a group show curated by Jack Pierson at the Danziger Gallery—and I learned something exciting and new because of them. Just as literature is opening up to cross many genres in a single work, photography is opening up to incorporate many genres and ideas—portraiture, street photography, gender philosophy, advertising, and so on—the better to emphasize the falseness of anything as specious as a single truth. The students recognized that in the world, let alone in their pictures, there were many stories to be told, sometimes all at once. The point was to tell them as specifically as possible, and with something akin to love.

Lovely Dark: Yale MFA 2015 Photography” opens Thursday at the Danziger Gallery in New York, and will travel to the Regen Projects in Los Angeles in July. A limited-edition book of the same name, designed by Michela Povoleri and with an essay by Hilton Als, is out this month from the Yale School of Art Photography Department.


Plastic Bodies

Inez & Vinoodh for Vogue Paris

Inez & Vinoodh shoots Cameron Russell, Liya Kebede, Karlie Kloss, Edie Campbell, Anna Ewers, Rianne ten Haken & Mica Arganaraz for Vogue Paris May 2015. Styled by Emmanuelle Alt. Hair by Christiaan. Make-up by Wendy Rowe.



Bruce Weber & Juergen Teller captures Louis Vuitton Fall/Winter 2015/2016 Ad Campaign. Models: Liya Kebede, Freja Beha Erichsen, Jennifer Connelly, Rianne van Rompaey, Julia Merkelbach, Alicia Vikander, Fernanda Ly, Angel Rutledge. Styled by Marie-Amelie Sauve.




i-D Magazine Summer 2015 by Alasdair McLellan

Posted by Sasha.
Alasdair McLellan captured Edie Campbell, Jean Campbell, Stella Tennant, Tyler Littlejohns, Cieran Lloyd for i-D Magazine Summer 2015. Styled by Benjamin Bruno. Hair by Anthony Turner, Malcolm Edwards. Make-up by Lucia Pica, Lynsey Alexander.




W Magazine August 2015 by Mert & Marcus

Posted by Sasha.

Mert & Marcus shoots Emily Ratajkowski, Bella Hadid, Joan Smalls, Irina Shayk, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, Lily Aldridge, Barbara Palvin, Doutzen Kroes, Anna Ewers & Chrissy Teigen for W Magazine August 2015. Styled by Edward Enninful. Make-up by Yadim. Hair by Jimmy Paul.


China’s Young Postmodern, Post-Mao Artists

China’s Young Postmodern, Post-Mao Artists

Liu Di, “Animal Regulation No. 8″ (2010), C-print, 23 5/8 x 31 1/2 in. (Collection of Andrew and Heather Rayburn)

Chi Peng, “Sprinting Forward 4″ (2004), C-print, 55 x 81 x 2 1/2 in. (framed) (Collection of Andrew and Heather Rayburn, all images courtesy the Orange County Museum of Art)



slaves of NY

Map: Exploring the World

View of the World from 9th Avenue, 1976, Saul Steinberg Ink, pencil, coloured pencil and watercolour on paper, 71 x 48 cm / 28 x 19 in., private collection. From Map

You can pre-order Map here; the title will be shipped on 28 September; check back soon for more news on this great title.


It’s Time for Greece to Leave the Euro

The Opinion Pages | Contributing Op-Ed Writer

It’s Time for Greece to Leave the Euro

HAMBURG, Germany — DOES democracy trump debt? Of course not, not even in Europe. No bank clerk here would be impressed if a family told her that they had voted to have the terms of their housing loan renegotiated — that’s not how loans, either personal or international, work. Yet leaders are gathering for a special summit meeting in Brussels on Tuesday because the Greeks have done exactly that: voted against the conditions the eurozone demands for a third bailout program for their country.
Of course, negotiations are a good in themselves, especially in Europe. But even in Brussels, there comes a time when losing your nerve is a rational choice. I don’t say it lightly, but I believe this point is here now. Europe has more to lose from a Greece that remains part of the eurozone than from a controlled exit, in which Greece softly steps out of the single currency.

Europe is a contract-based community of states that permanently agree on mutually beneficial rules, with the finest privilege (for those who do economically well enough) being membership in the euro club. What now is the greater threat to this project: a loss of a currency club member that, in the eyes of many, had been brought on board by mistake? Or, in scrambling to keep it in, the spread of an attitude whereby contracts count for little, and rules count for even less?

True, Mr. Tsipras sacked his controversial finance minister, Yanis Varoufakis. But one ideologue fewer doesn’t make this government less ideological. As childish as it sounds, Mr. Tsipras and his fellow fighters are still raging against the triviality that you can spend only what you earn. Leaving aside Syriza’s Nazi-Merkel comparisons and accusations of “terrorist” behavior by creditors, over the past five months Europe has heard way too much from his government about the impossibility of further cuts and way too little about possible sources of new income.
A big part of the blame for this mess rests on the shoulders of the chancellor of Germany, Angela Merkel herself. Her statement that “if the euro fails, Europe fails” was understood by Athens as a carte blanche: Greece’s euro membership is obviously priceless to Europe’s most powerful leader. From then on, all credit negotiations between Athens and the eurozone resembled a poker game with the German cards in the open. The fail-fail sentence was easily the most stupid public statement that the usually cautious Ms. Merkel had ever made.
Still, patience with Greece in her party, the conservative Christian Democrats, is waning rapidly, as it is in Germany’s staunchest economic allies, the Netherlands, Finland and the Baltic States. To many Northern Europeans, both the Greek government and the Greek people have finally demonstrated that, according to them, no given rule is ever fixed. This mentality is not just alien to the rather Protestant northerners. It also holds a danger for Europe’s political fabric.
Right now many observers are fixated on the risk of Greece’s exiting the euro. But the risk of keeping it in at all costs is even higher. Consider this scenario.
Unemployment in Italy, Portugal and Spain remains high, and anti-European Union populists are on the rise in all three. The conclusion that people there could draw from a third bailout program for Greece would almost certainly be that voting for radical parties and obstructive behavior are eventually rewarded. You just have to be cocky enough. And if that happened — if, say, a Syriza clone came to power in Spain, or if the leadership in those countries expressed a strong sympathy for Greece’s position — the counterreaction in the creditor countries could be harsh, even hostile. Europe could end up with a calamitous north-south divide along camps known from the Cold War: the “socialists” there, the “capitalists” here.
Neither the eurozone nor Europe is best served by holding on to Greece. Instead, the European Union needs to come up with a smooth way out of its dilemma, namely an orderly exit by Greece from the euro.
This solution will be expensive, too — among other things, the European Union will have to make sure that Greece’s post-euro currency isn’t so cheap that Greeks can’t afford vital imports, like oil and medicine. Yes, Greece still must be rescued. But no, it need not be rescued within the eurozone.