Thursday, May 04, 2006

Chelsea gallery crawl - spring edition

First of all - woof! - its getting hot out there. When its too hot to wear the knee height doc martens, its just plain too hot. Don't know if my little SF wimpy character can survive another NYC summer. Ugh.

Okay, that's too much complaining already. Actually, in the shade it was pleasant, and really the summer weather is nice to walk from gallery to gallery, and even stop and enjoy a coffee in a cafe along the way. Wasn't that long ago that I was complaining about the cold and Chelsea heaters!

So we saw quite a bit, but only a few on which I want to remark.

The impressive show for the day was the Davor Vrankic show at The Proposition Gallery. First let me say that there is no way the images online or in the press or any reproduction whatsoever will do any justice at all to the work*. These were truly strange and disturbing imagery which had they been slick or glossy would have been really hard to take in. The thing that catches and holds the eye is the unbelievable and masterful hand which is evident in the creation of these works. They are finely crafted graphite on paper drawings. The distortion and lighting are fantastic and incredibly alluring. All made with distinct pencil marks on paper. If you haven't already, really you should go see this show. Let me know what you think.

On a lighter note and a pleasant escape was the Olafur Eliasson show at Tanya Bonakdar Gallery. Always one to play with light and spatial information, this show was a stylish showing by Eliasson. There are four pieces being shown - two worth seeing are the water/light refraction/reflection piece in the lower gallery and the mirror/light refraction/reflection piece in the upstairs gallery. Both pieces create patterns with light and shadow and let the viewer drift away in a kaleidoscope of shapes and shadows. The water piece is nicely affected by people moving about the gallery, causing shudders and waves to be cast along the curving walls of the piece.

We also stopped in to see the wonderful curiosities that are the sculptures of Joe Fig at Plus Ultra. It was a fascinating look inside artist's studios (I particularly liked the Julie Mehretu studio piece) and provided the wonderment of miniature. The concept of owning a Joe Fig reproduction of the studio of an artist I like is an interesting conceptual consideration.

Also took a moment to read over the funny and provocative "joint mission statement" outside Plus Ultra and Schroeder Romero. If you want to know more about it, let Edward_ tell you. (It's by William Powhida).

*Which is why I won't even bother to post an image here because it will pre-influence you. If you really want you can click on the links to the gallery, but don't. Just go see the show.

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