Filed under: New York, Review | Tags: Basquiat, Gagosian, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Nadiah Fellah
Basquiat’s career encapsulated the kind of intensity and drama that art legends are made of. Within a period of five years he went from being a high school drop-out living on the streets of New York, to an established painter whose work was in high demand. Shortly thereafter, he died of a drug overdose at the age of twenty-seven, ending his short, but prolific career. - Nadiah Fellah, NYC Contributor
Installation view of Jean-Michel Basquiat at Gagosian Gallery. Photo by Rob McKeever. Courtesy Gagosian Gallery.
Filed under: New York, Review | Tags: Monya Rowe, Nadiah Fellah, Vera Iliatova
On view though April 13th, at Monya Rowe’s second-floor gallery in Chelsea, are eight exquisite paintings by the Russian-born artist Vera Iliatova (NAP #86). The artist’s paintings are best described as wooded landscapes, but the buildings and bridges of cities can often be seen through tree’s branches, giving the impression that figures have wandered just beyond an urban environment. Introductory text written by the Ohio painter George Rush best captures this notion. He writes: “Strange things start to happen this far out. They are beyond the limits of the city now, the women…Gone are the signifiers of stability.”
The enigmatic quality of the paintings is heightened by Iliatova’s technical mastery of the medium. I recently had the opportunity to ask the artist more about her painting practice, artistic influences, and the sources for her imagery. – Nadiah Fellah, NYC Contributor
Vera Iliatova | Days Of Never, 2013, oil on canvas, 78 by 60 inches, Courtesy of the artist and Monya Rowe Gallery, New York
Filed under: New York, Review | Tags: Dana Miller, Jay DeFeo, Nadiah Fellah, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Whitney Museum
On view at the Whitney Museum in New York are works by the late San Francisco artist Jay DeFeo. The show premiered at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art in the fall, but its installation at the Whitney is slightly larger, bringing together over 150 paintings, sculptures, photographs, and drawings by the artist. The sprawling show unites many rarely seen works by DeFeo, who was little-known beyond the Bay Area art scene from the 50s until her death in 1989. However, her lack of a national reputation was not for lack of skill or production, as the retrospective demonstrates. Throughout her life DeFeo worked prolifically in a range of mediums, building a transformative artistic practice that was both visionary and inspiring. - Nadiah Fellah, NYC Contributor
Filed under: New York, Q&A, Review | Tags: Bold as Love, James Cohan Gallery, Nadiah Fellah, SHINIQUE SMITH
On display at the James Cohan Gallery in New York are over twenty large-scale paintings and sculptures by Shinique Smith. The show, Bold as Love, combines the artist’s disparate inspirations drawn from calligraphy, literature, music, dance, fashion, and spiritual elements, which are literally and symbolically “tied together” in her sculptural pieces. - Nadiah Fellah, NYC Contributor
Shinique Smith | No Key, No Question, 2013, Ink, acrylic, fabric and collage on canvas over panel, 60 x 60 x 2 inches, Courtesy James Cohan Gallery
Filed under: Review | Tags: Badlands Unlimited, Nadiah Fellah, NYC, Paul Chan
The idea of destroying books—literally and figuratively—never occurred to artist Paul Chan, until a couple of years ago. His ebook publishing company, Badlands Unlimited, was participating in the New York Art Book Fair, when an argument broke out in front of their booth. Two women were having a heated discussion about whether or not publishers like Chan’s were destroying books. One of the women argued that the shift to electronic books was inevitable, while the other vehemently disagreed, declaring, “They are burning books!” Although not present at the fair himself, when Chan heard this story, he says a light bulb went off. He had never considered that he was destroying books—in fact, he thought he was creating them. But if he were going to be accused of such an atrocity, why not do it right? - Nadiah Fellah, NYC Contributor
Filed under: Review | Tags: Anj Smith, Hauser & Wirth, Nadiah Fellah, NYC
Portraits by the British artist Anj Smith appear at first glance to be those of young women. But careful viewing reveals elements that throw their portrayal of femininity into question—a few strands of facial hair, an Adam’s apple. Smith says the ambiguity is intentional, and that she was inspired to investigate issues of gender in her work by a close friend who recently underwent gender reassignment surgery. Her paintings are at once radical explorations of identity and sexuality, fused with a painting practice that has its roots in a fifteenth-century aesthetic and technique, a striking contrast that invigorates her work.
All of the eleven paintings on view at Hauser & Wirth in New York are small, but painted in intricate detail. At times Smith’s brushstrokes are scarcely detectable as hairline traces across her canvases. In other instances her brushstrokes are not detectable at all, as she has seamlessly created porcelain complexions and diaphanous textiles using an oil technique only achieved by true painting masters. It takes the artist six to nine months to create each painting, but the complexity of each piece succeeds in creating scenes that are surreal and alluring, well worth her time-consuming efforts. - Nadiah Fellah, NYC Contributor
Filed under: Features | Tags: Brian Fee, Ellen C. Caldwell, Erin Langner, Matthew Smith, Nadiah Fellah
In case you haven’t noticed, we have the best art writers in the world. Seriously, it’s true. Our blog contributors are stationed all over the country, scoping out shows, visiting studios, and interviewing the best contemporary painters in the art world. Recently we asked our most prolific bloggers to answer a few questions about themselves and their thoughts on 2012. It’s your chance to get to know a handful of the talented individuals that bring you the New American Paintings/Blog! There are many more writers, and we hope to feature them soon.
Thanks to everyone that contributes to our blog, helping us bring our readers rich and exciting content on a daily basis!
When we asked Brian Fee which piece “moved him” in 2012, he responded: James Rosenquist | F-111 Reinstallation, 1964-65, Oil on canvas with aluminum, twenty-three sections, 10×86′
Filed under: Art Market, Art World | Tags: Alex Schuchard, Arielle Sandler, Artist Relief Project, Chelsea, Chris Cosnowski, Heidi Pollard, Hurricane Sandy, Jessica Snow, Lauren Purje, Nadiah Fellah, New York, NYFA, Rachel Beach, Space B Gallery
Like most New Yorkers, it was hard to look beyond our own basic necessities in the days leading up to Hurricane Sandy. Bottled water, flashlights, canned food. But as the winds died down and the storm’s damage was made known, the extent of its devastation proved bewildering. The homes, neighborhoods, and businesses in New York and New Jersey that took the worst of hits were highly visible news stories. But in the days and weeks following the storm there was another community whose irreparable damages came to light: those of the arts community. - Nadiah Fellah, NYC Contributor
Print featuring artwork from the first exhibition, available for purchase at http://www.ArtistReliefProject.com. 40% of the proceeds will be donated to NYFA’s Emergency Relief Fund for Hurricane Sandy.
Filed under: Review | Tags: David Nolan Gallery, Nadiah Fellah, Sandra Vásquez de la Horra
Chilean-born artist Sandra Vásquez de la Horra’s drawings are currently on view at the David Nolan Gallery in New York. In a show titled Entre el cielo y la tierra (Between heaven and earth), the figures and creatures that occupy her illustrations are amalgamations of biblical, mythological, and fantastical sources. Many of the drawings presented are new works, and a number are from her participation in the São Paulo Biennial last fall. - Nadiah Fellah, NYC Contributor
Sandra Vásquez de la Horra | El viaje de Olokum (Olokun’s Journey), 2012, graphite on paper, wax, 40 x 28 1/2 inches, Courtesy David Nolan Gallery.
Filed under: New York, Review | Tags: David Zwirner, Francis Alÿs, Nadiah Fellah, Reel/Unreel
On view at David Zwirner Gallery in New York is a body of work by Francis Alÿs, originally produced for Documenta 13. For this summer’s iteration of the contemporary art fair, Alÿs showed a group of small paintings in a former bakery in Kassel, Germany, and a film entitled REEL/UNREEL in one of the fair’s satellite venues in Kabul, Afghanistan, which was produced in collaboration with Ajmal Maiwandi and Julien Devaux. The installation at David Zwirner reunites these works in the same place for the first time since their debut last June. - Nadiah Fellah, NYC Contributor