Category Archives: Art

ToDo in San Francisco

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If you saw my piece at the MINT show Here to Go, you will know I have spent a lot of time thinking about paper, motors, gears, and getting them to play well together.  So when I walked into the Museum of Craft and Design in San Francisco, I may have gasped.  Chris Eckert’s mechanical devises make the industrial poetic by drawing on religious themes for their content.  One machine transcribes the Gospel of Mark with a calligraphy pen while subtly responding to the presence of a viewer with slight modifications to the text.  Another uses a motion sensor to ring alter bells that would typically ring during a Catholic mass.  Combing my love for text and elegant machines, ToDo got the highest marks for me. I don’t know how many machines continuously transcribe Eckert’s to do lists, randomizing the oder so that no list is repeated. The spent paper grows into a undulating sculptural mass beneath the machines.  Read Eckert’s blog to learn more about how he made the machines. I’m so glad I stumbled upon this exhibit during my short, but inspiring, trip to San Francisco!!


This has recently become a bit of an internet meme but the story behind it is worth some gasps. Check out this New York Times article about good intentions gone very, very wrong. Opps!




UPDATE: Cecilia Giménez is demanding royalties.

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Rider Spoke – Games for Grownups

I may be too busy for a whole lot of Night School blogging this semester, but it’s only because I’m doing such cool stuff!  (Not to worry too much, blogging is one my favorite means of procrastination.)  I’m taking class on Interactive Art, with a focus on Sound Installation.  We learned about this project and I thought it was blog worthy.  From the description on the project’s website, “Rider Spoke is a work for cyclists combining theatre with game play and state of the art technology. The project continues Blast Theory’s enquiry into performance in the age of personal communication. Developing from works such as Uncle Roy All Around You (2003) the piece invites the audience to cycle through the streets of the city, equipped with a handheld computer. They search for a hiding place and record a short message there. And then they search for the hiding places of others.”  It made me think of our discussion around play.  I like that there is a slight element of danger in this game, however.  What would a Night School game look like?

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james turrell at rice university

Skyspace by James Turrell is a place to sit and watch the sky through an aperture in a canopy above your head.”

The Formidable Aura

The New York Times just published an article titled ” An Artist’s Formidable Aura” about Marina Abramovic and the upcoming documentary about her on HBO.

I am very excited to see it because I wasn’t able to experience her retrospective at the MoMa personally. I haven’t figured out  exactly why her performances resonate with viewers so strongly, and I hope this documentary investigates that along with her methods, history, and provides insight to her theory of art making.

new do ho suh!

I’ve always loved the work of do ho suh.  I first heard of him when I watched his segment on art 21 and saw the beautiful rooms he recreated with painful detail in transluscent fabric. There are ghostly and nostalgic of other places in the best way. “Fallen Star” his new work in UC San Diego, has a different approach to the concept of the home.

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William Kentridge

I’m doing some lesson planning today and since I’m teaching in South Africa I’m hoping to incorporate William Kentridge.  I came across this video of him interviewing himself and I loved it.

Honey Hunters


Honey Hunters in Nepal risk their lives to capture the nests of the largest honey bee in the world.



Two members of night school, Aria and Virginia, were awarded funds to create art on the beltline! We are so proud and excited!

(I’ll try to convince them to post their proposal so we get an exclusive preview.)

We can’t wait to see it!

NOTE: You can see a version of the proposal here. We will post updates and probably make pleas for assistance as the installation date nears. Thanks again Ellen!- VA

performance art meets architecture?

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This recent posting of OMA designing the Marina Abramovic Institute brings to light the age old question of how can architects make innovative space – without detracting from the art? and here, this building  serves as more of an active role than simply a gallery, perhaps due to her body of work, being very physical and performative.  It’s less about perfectly lighting a painting and providing ample room to view it.  Instead, she charges spaces and interactions and it’ll be interesting to see if the architecture can live up to it, rather than distract from it!

Sarah Sze, For the birds

I’ve been thinking more about the purpose of public art and I came across this piece by Sarah Sze on the Highline in NYC.  Sarah Sze piece is both functional and beautiful.  It educates the public on the birds that share their urban habitat and provides a home for the birds.

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Do you have any regrets?  Any projects you look back on and wish you had executed them?  Right after I finished my senior show as an undergrad I wanted to make one more head out of sugar (in pink of course) and leave it outside to be eaten by ants.  Its was an idea I talked about forever but never completed.  I wish I had, but since I didn’t do it when the idea was fresh it seems like going back to do makeup work now.  I’ve moved onto other things, but I wonder if I had executed the candy version of myself (or a myriad of other projects) where would I have ended up?  I’ve been thinking about this project because of our upcoming prompt, Social Insects.  It would have been perfect!  But it remains locked away in the gallery of my mind’s eye.  There’s all kinds of stuff up there!!  Do you have projects that nag at you, hoping to take form?

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Bee Poetic – Aganetha Dyck

I love thinking about Night School as a platform for collaboration.  Aganetha Dyck shines a new light on the possibilities of collaborative partners in her work with bees.  She works in tandem with the fuzzy structural engineers to create sculptural works in forms that are outside of their traditional scope.

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Joke’s on???

Is it all a big joke?  I like to think I became an artist with genuine intentions to  make creative, authentic work that is interesting and illuminates important issues in an unexpected way.  But it is easy to look around at contemporary art these days and wonder if it’s all a big joke.  My friend and former art teacher Stephen D’Andrea sent me this Ted Talk by Shea Hembry who seems to be asking a similar question.  60 Minutes visited Art Basal where the market for contemporary art is rooted in the desire for a financial return disproportionate to the cost or value of the piece.  Looking at contemporary art through the lens of a public that has little to no interaction with it, one can easily see how people quickly tire at the shear absurdity of it.  But where does that leave us?  If our intentions are genuine and authentic how do we separate ourselves from an art world that seems all together other worldly?

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Appropriating Images for Art: When Is It Okay?

Appropriating Images for Art: When Is It Okay? – Studio 360.

Left) Photograph by Patrick Cariou from his 2000 book Yes Rasta, (right) painting from Richard Prince’s 2008 “Canal Zone” series (powerHouse Books, Gagosian Gallery)


Head on over to Studio 360 and check out the debate.

TRAILER: Season 6 of “Art in the Twenty-First Century” 2012 | Art21 | PBS

Art 21 Season 6 Trailer

Some people watch porn… I watch Art 21 and I can’t wait for Season 6!!!!!!!!