Mar 12

Cindy Sherman at MoMA

The Cindy Sherman retrospective, which opened at MoMA on February 26th, displays an astonishing oeuvre based around her variations on the representation of self.  Since her early works of “Untitled Film Stills,” she has managed to do a broad-scoped study of some highly successful and consistently artificial characters and themes.

Untitled Fill Still #14, 1978

After Sherman explored the traditional and typical roles women play in films, she turned her eye to the male gaze. Her less than typical “Centerfolds” show Sherman playing women who span the emotional spectrum from frightened to disinterested to forlorn and uncertain. While some works within this series do have slightly provocative undertones, these are far from the Playboy calendar girls shots one might expect.

Untitled #96, 1981

The history portraits, photographed between 1988 – 1990, are diverse and a powerful choice which demonstrate a complete (at first glance) divergence from previous work. However, when the viewer closely considers the recurring deeper themes in Sherman’s work, it becomes evident that society’s projected roles and views of femininity and concepts of mass media as a tool for cultural dissemination still apply in this series. Personally, I find this series, and particularly, its presentation at MoMA in this exhibition, to resonate with me deeply on a visual and conceptual level.

Untitled # 228, 1990


In the fashion industry, Sherman defines a new standard of beauty by  warping, mocking, and playing with the viewer and assumed standards in society… Check back soon for the rest of this report!

Feb 12

Advice to Embrace

Alex Pacheco-Garcia, a friend from Tisch Photo, posted something that I would love to have as a constant reminder.  It’s worth sharing with you.

Words of wisdom from Peter Fischilli and David Weiss. How to Work Better, 1991.

Feb 12

Overly Cute.

Tomorrow night will be my final Screen Printing class at Root Division.  So far, all my work has been translating photographs into prints, which has been surprisingly successful.  I have two ideas I am really excited about for tomorrow, and am hopeful they both work out.  Idea #1 is to print my own business cards.  I’ve spruced them up with a patterned background, which hopefully will not be overwhelming to the eye.  What I’m most excited about is the greeting cards I plan to make which will feature Mimsy, my aging and beautiful rabbit.  Here’s a glimpse of my Photoshop sketch.

Dainty Mimsy

Jan 12

Edudemic Shares Technology Tools

Here is a list of Edudemic posts (with links) that presented some valuable resources regarding technology and education.  Many are free, though some paid applications are mixed throughout.

35 Best Web 2.0 Classroom Tools: So many of these are amazing gems hidden in the mix of more common/familiar spots and resources.

iPad Apps for Elementary School: The majority of the options in the All Subjects/General section are related to the arts, largely activities that can be self-directed.

iPad Apps for Middle School: This collection includes a specific Arts section toward the bottom of the list, complete with a variety of

10 High-Tech Lesson Avenues: You’ll need to set up an Adobe Education Exchange account, but several of the ideas explored here are interesting and developed enough that they are worth playing with and tweaking.

Dec 11

Maurizio Cattelan: All

Until January 22, 2012, the Guggenheim is exhibiting Maurizio Cattelan’s first and last retrospective (not so sure I believe him), as the artist has marked this event as his “departure from the art world.”  I was hesitant about spending the money to attend the show because Time Out New York had a scathing review of the presentation of the work (as well as the artist) by Howard Halle, in which the exhibition was given a single star and much criticism.  Fortunately, today I have found a more promising analysis on Capital by David Balzer.

The work is particularly powerful for the layers in which it possesses – figuratively, conceptually and literally.  His rejection and criticism of authoritarianism and the social, political, and artistic power structures bombarding and “strangling” our society are revealed to varying degrees… perhaps I may go so far as to say leaving us suspended in a tension filled space where the meanings may be slowly peeled away to reveal new complexities and complications to our perceptions and understanding of the world in which we live.

Put succinctly, the show was charged with energy, the museum was packed full, and the work was, as Balzer wrote, “like  a postmodern-adult version of ‘It’s A Small World After All.’” Continue reading →

Dec 11

Creative Growth

Shortly before taking a break for the holiday, I attended a volunteer orientation session at Creative Growth, an art center for adults with disabilities in Oakland, CA, not far from our apartment. Amazingly, I learned of Judith Scott, an Outsider Artist, through one of my graduate classes, but did not make the connection between person and place until I decided to visit the art center. In addition to providing art materials and assistance to adults with disabilities, there is a gallery for the artists’ work to be displayed and sold, which I think can provide a feeling of self worth for many. I am looking forward to returning to Oakland and getting to know the artists at Creative Growth. I have a great feeling about this!

Find more at Creative Growth.

Judy Embraces Piece, by Leon Borensztein