Contemporary Art

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Artist Lorna Simpson Brings Her Arresting Collages to the Bowery

'Soundlessness,' 2016 (Courtesy of Lorna Simpson and Salon 94

‘Soundlessness,’ 2016 (Courtesy of Lorna Simpson and Salon 94

Lorna Simpson is returning to Salon 94 for her third exhibition at the Bowery gallery. The Brooklyn-born artist became well-known in the mid-’80s for her large-scale works combining photography and textual elements with watercolor, ink, or acrylic paint, and creating nuanced statements on contemporary society’s perception of race, gender, and identity. Her show at Salon 94, opening September 8, will feature a number of paintings that premiered in the 55th Venice Biennale.

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A Guide to the Most Affordable Art at the ‘Affordable Art Fair’

Eric Guo, $400

Eric Guo, $400

There could be no better statement on the status-driven nature of collecting art than use of the term “affordable’ in describing the art for sale at the 20th annual Affordable Art Fair, running this weekend at The Metropolitan Pavilion. Affordable is defined as something “reasonably priced.” In this particular instance, that means art with a price tag ranging between $100 and $10,000, which begs the question (as it pertains to contemporary art), what the fuck even is “reasonable”?

Is it the price tag in relation to the cost of the materials (srsly, there ain’t enough gold leaf in the world)? Perhaps, it relates to the creative originality of the work, which is a whole different kettle of fish. More likely, it’s something closer to the economic value attached to an artist’s name. This is nothing new. The intersection of art and commerce has long been a topic of heated debate. Yet still, adding insult to injury, this word – affordable.

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At Independent, There Are Newspapers in Jars and Pickled Veggies in Tables

Andra Ursuta, “Even More Love Hours (2014), at Ramiken Crucible. (photo: Allyson Shiffman)

Andra Ursuta, “Even More Love Hours” at Ramiken Crucible. (photo: Allyson Shiffman)

The Independent art fair (the art fair that prefers not to be described as an art fair) opened its doors yesterday evening. To its credit, it does avoid many of the typical art fair evils. There are no square booths, exhibitors are typically friendly – even if you don’t look like you’re wielding a checkbook, and natural light streams through the windows. Located in Chelsea at what was once the Dia Art Foundation’s exhibition space, the whole Independent experience is rather palatable and pleasant.
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We Went Uptown For the First Time in Two Years, to Preview the Whitney Biennial

The Whitney Biennial, which opens to the public this Friday, attempts for the 77th time to offer a snapshot of contemporary art in America while simultaneously acknowledging that this is just not humanly possible – particularly in the confines of one brutal uptown structure. The Whitney brought in three external curators to take on this impossible task, giving each their own floor to fill with sculpture, paintings, video, performance, printed matter and big, plush penises (note: only one floor actually includes big plush penises).
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Joseph Latimore (Passerby, Panda) Has Opened Sensei, ‘For Artists and People Who Love Art’

Athena LaTocha's New Works, Installation View at Sensei Gallery. (Photo: Allyson Shiffman)

Athena LaTocha’s new works at Gallery Sensei. (Photo: Allyson Shiffman)

For every couple of dozen unpleasant openings and closings in LES, there’s one that manages to restore our faith in the neighborhood, if only for a glorious moment. Gallery Sensei, a 2,000 sq. ft. gallery and arts event space at 278 Grand Street, is one such opening. The permanent outpost of the art project of the same name, Sensei promises exhibitions, art events and even booze! Yes, there’s a charming bar in the back of the space ideal for discussing the works on view or how much your rent has gone up this month.
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Starving Artist? NewPatron Will Find You a Medici

Michael Ellis working on a photorealistic painting. It takes 3-6 months for Ellis to complete a piece

Michael Ellis working on a photorealistic painting. It takes 3-6 months for Ellis to complete a piece. (Photo: Courtesy of NewPatron)

Unless you can survive without sleep or food or your parents have lots and lots of money, it’s tough being an emerging artist in New York these days. Studio spaces are expensive, the fancy gallerists and dealers don’t give a shit about you and neither do their patrons. On the flip side, unless you’re a gazillionare and/or have a formal art education, buying art in New York can be a rather daunting endeavor (the fancy gallerists and dealers don’t give a shit about you either).
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Now That Hanksy’s the Shit, Buy One of His $1,500 James Franco Toilet Seats

Hanksy toilet seats. Photo: courtesy of Krause Gallery

“Gatspee” and not “Leonard DiCraprio”? (Photo courtesy of Krause Gallery)

If you hate Bansky, you probably abhor Hanksy – his cheap viral, pun-enthused knockoff. But say what you will, the Bushwick-based parody artist knows how to make a quick buck with minimal effort, and there’s only one way we feel about that — jealous.
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