I tried to see art at New York's PS1 this past weekend when we were passing through town but....more than half of the museum was closed and there was a band sound checking in the courtyard the whole 15 minutes I could stand! I only bring it up because, in a conscious effort to support the arts, I paid the entire suggested donation price (a whooping $15 and, yes, o yes, they ARE one of the many clandestine suggested donation spots in NY!) only to be met with closed corridors and blockades of security guards. PS1 is sort of the kid sister of MoMA (MoMA which is not only a paid admission price but a recently raised $25 paid admission price!) perched out in Long Island City Queens housed inside of an old school in sort of a strange spot for a museum. I really don't get how drawing a huge crowd with their Warm Up Series (the cause of the soundchecking mentioned above/summer Saturday live events in their large, art & architecture ravaged courtyard) and then not having much art to see is a smart move? I know things need to be installed and openings need to be had but this is some seriously poor planning! Displacing a party for art, making art an inaccessible thing during a time when people who wouldn't normally go to this museum are there, it just seems really....jerky! I normally love PS1, it being the place I have been introduced to so many great contemporary artists (like the intensely brilliant paintings of John Lurie and the music making machines of David Ellis and the funeral ship of Matthew Day Jackson) but this experience really bummed me out. Also as a side note, I know that public funding is a necessary part of museums operating costs but $15-25 is a lot of money for a lot of people, especially for families. What normal family can pay $100 to see art? There has to be some kind of sliding scale solution? Or maybe, at the very least, less (seemingly unnecessary) expansion?
Kate Gilmore the great! Brian Dewan! Patrick Jacobs! Ati Maier!) is the Pierogi Gallery just over the bridge from PS1 in Williamsburg Brooklyn. Friday night we went to the opening of the artist Tony Fitzpatrick's new show in this Brooklyn institution. His lithographs (one pictured at right) are small, intricate, collages of imagery pulling from old comic strips, vintage iconography and an almost art nouveau geometric style- they all had a very Chicago feel to me (a kind of yellowed, jazzy throwback to the towns heydays that a lot of art coming out of there tends to have) so learning Fitzpatrick is from Chicago was no surprise! Turns out he also does theater work, performing a one man show in conjunction with the exhibit at Pierogi's newer, larger space called The Boiler (which Brent and I saw during it's construction and whose high ceilings we lusted after being that we were embarking on Gravity at the time). The other exhibit opening at Pierogi was by Michael Schall and was composed of a bunch of silky, well executed graphite drawings of rocks & nature and their collision with manmade & industrial looking forms all made with perfect chiariscuro that soothingly drew you into their sense of space...I think I need to see them at a less harried time than an opening to really enjoy their meditative beauty! At least some of New York let me see some art this weekend! And some city geese near the art! Look at those geese! And beautiful New York! (Geese picture by Brent Green)