Filmed over nearly three years, WASTE LAND follows renowned artist Vik Muniz as he journeys from his home base in Brooklyn to his native Brazil and the world’s largest garbage dump, Jardim Gramacho, located on the outskirts of Rio de Janeiro. There he photographs an eclectic band of “catadores” — self-designated pickers of recyclable materials. Muniz’s initial objective was to “paint” the catadores with garbage. However, his collaboration with these inspiring characters as they recreate photographic images of themselves out of garbage reveals both the dignity and despair of the catadores as they begin to re-imagine their lives. Director Lucy Walker (DEVIL’S PLAYGROUND, BLINDSIGHT, COUNTDOWN TO ZERO) has great access to the entire process and, in the end, offers stirring evidence of the transformative power of art and the alchemy of the human spirit.
Posts Tagged ‘New York Artists’
“Shades of Samurai” by Debra La Lomia
Surface: Paper – Other availability upon request.
Please contact us for information regarding original artwork purchases.
- The 16 x 20 pieces are printed on archival paper, signed, numbered, matted and ready to frame. Actual art is about 11 x 14.
- Currantgirl – Original piece: Acrylic paint and collage over retro paper.
- S*Pellbinders series.
- SHOP SHARON PELL MIXED MEDIA ARTWORK
New York Artist Sharon Pell never tires of expressing the sinuous lines of the female form. A love of color, collage, and abstract art infuses her pieces, and her creative inspirations range from French vintage poster art and retro imagery to female superheroes and pop culture icons – many of them
idols from her childhood.
In Pell’s series of S*Pellbinders, a mixed-media collection of captivating women, she unearths the complex relationships between her figures and the mass-media images on paper over which she works. This process of integration is the
focus of her art.
A self-described pack rat, Pell is a collector of postcards, art cards, match-books, stamps, printed papers, and maps – an ever-growing selection of
ephemera that influences her work.
Pell’s paintings have been shown in galleries and boutiques in New York among other places, and commissioned by the likes of Tommy Hilfiger and Paramount Pictures. As a teenager she was awarded a scholarship to Pratt Institute in New York City, where she studied fashion, illustration, and photography – a combination which contributes greatly to her style; a blend of illustration, pop culture, modern art and childhood memories.
The 16 x 20 pieces are printed on archival paper,
signed, numbered, matted and ready to frame.
Actual art is about 11 x 14.
“Frapanesegirl” – Original piece: Acrylic paint and collage over Japanese art.
This NY artist says be yourself and find your bliss. Debra La Lomia has found hers…
Being surrounded by vibrant colors combined with the tactile process of painting, it is both quietly mindful and an excitement of expression all at the same time”.
Using acrylics and mixed media, she prefers to create abstracts to circumvent linguistic interpretations and shift toward a more visceral appreciation of her work.
Charles Ray’s minimalist installations are as mind-blowing as any hallucinogen…
The New York Times art critic Ken Johnson is writing a book saying that “psychedelic drugs and psychedelic culture have had a deeper, less obvious influence on the art of the past 60 years than has generally been acknowledged.” Johnson doesn’t mean that the intermingling of art and drugs is new; they’ve probably been canoodling as long as both have been around. And his idea isn’t about artists who actually use drugs. Sober-looking work is made by stoners and addled-looking art is made by teetotalers. Van Eyck’s hyperreal paintings are among the most hallucinogenic works ever made. In some ways, all art is a hallucination. Johnson’s idea has to do with the widespread availability and use of psychedelic drugs and the increasingly common understanding of their effects.
This notion has been around for a while. Five years ago, I wrote about a wily show called “Drunk vs. Stoned,” which postulated that “stoned art” is introspective, hypersensitive, detail-oriented, and prone to surprise, spirals, and repetition, while drunk art is outward-looking, impulsive, romantic, and unafraid of messiness and sloppy emotions. Under these criteria, Expressionism is drunk; Pop is stoned. Pollock, Rauschenberg, and Nan Goldin are drunk; Warhol, Johns, and Cindy Sherman are stoned. Johnson’s lens provides an interesting alternative to teleological-stylistic versions of art history. It is experiential rather than detached. Look at John Chamberlain’s crushed-car-part sculptures this way, and you don’t see commentary on consumerism and waste, or formal arrangements of color and line; you see exoskeletal creatures of folded space. Pipilotti Rist’s burning color becomes the morphing of alternative universes, and Matthew Barney’s crawling through Vaseline makes the malleability of space palpable.
The three Charles Ray installations at Matthew Marks right now, all brilliant examples of post-minimalist/conceptual sculpture, each created in the late eighties and new to New York, rattled my perceptions, jangled my faculties, and made me go “Wow!” They exemplify a drug-addled view of the world. Ray’s sculptures, part of a long tradition of minimal installations, are also forerunners to much of the theatrical Festivalism of recent times (e.g., Maurizio Cattelan and Olafur Eliasson). Each piece is nearly invisible and formally economical. Yet each is outrageously labor-intensive. Ink Line, the best and showiest of the three works, is a sculpture/drawing/fountain consisting of a stream of jet-black ink pouring from a dime-size hole in the ceiling into a dime-size hole in the floor. Initially Ink Line looks like a strand of yarn strung the height of the gallery, a pulsating Fred Sandback sculpture, a free-floating Barnett Newman zip, or a disembodied Sol LeWitt. Get close and you’ll realize the line is liquid, glimmering, the consistency of syrup, moving fairly fast, fluctuating slightly, and thinner at the bottom than at the top. The ink forms a weird climatological aura around itself, slightly changing the humidity of the room. I was blown away when I was allowed to see the elaborate apparatus that makes this simple effect possible. There was a large, noisy electric motor in the showroom beneath this gallery, all sorts of wiring, and plastic tubes that go under the floor, behind the wall, and above the ceiling. A gallery assistant arrives two hours early each day to drain the ink, “de-gas” it (!?), heat it with lamps to between 90 and 95 degrees, and put it back into the system. Anyone who looks at Ink Line can figure out how it works—yet the piece is as much a phenomenological event and a mystery as it is a work of formalist sculpture.
Spinning Spot is a circular section of floor, 24 inches in diameter, spinning at 33 ¼ revolutions per minute. Never mind that the section weighs more than a quarter-ton, is more than a foot thick, and is supported from beneath by a huge motor strapped to the basement ceiling. The effect is mesmerizing. Sometimes the spot seems to be standing still and the room to be moving, other times the room disappears and all you can see is the spot. Meanwhile, the third piece, Moving Wire, is a thin gleaming steel wire whose ends poke out through a wall into space. Get close and you see the two halves slowly changing length, one wire shortening as the other gets longer, then appearing to reverse.
Since the birth of the avant-garde in the mid-nineteenth century, art history has been considered mainly in formal ways: What led to what, who begat whom. That approach has a way of shutting out a basic idea—namely, the visionary, shamanic inexplicability of most of what we see. Johnson’s idea brings such an escape from reason back into the discussion, and could relegate some major art to the margins and move marginal (and questionable) things to the center. Keeping psychedelia in mind as you look at art stops it from being just a building block or part of a stylistic family; it allows recent work to regain some of the value that art has had over its 50,000-year history.
All three of Ray’s pieces, especially Ink Line (which some New York museum should buy and install, pronto) and Spinning Spot, are more than Merry Prankster sight gags. Each makes you ultra-aware of spaces outside the one you’re in, of rooms above and below you, the things that make these rooms and effects possible, and how your own body relates to all of this. They put you back in the realm of the unknown, of double vision and oddity. In addition to making me imagine the gallery was moving, blurring around the edges, turning liquid, spinning, being sucked into itself, and sprouting shiny metal tentacles, each is a total trip.
Dude, You’ve Gotta See This