Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Art That Takes My Breath Away

Such a cliche. But I'm feeling susceptible to other peoples' art and I can't stop blogging about it. Maybe I should follow the lead of (my non-relative) Stephen Elliott who took an internet fast for one month. He learned it helps lengthen the attention span. Might be worth the experiment. If I go on the wagon, I'll warn you. It convinced him to give up blogging entirely.

Anyhoo, in keeping with my "All For the Best" post, I found myself sighing over a picture in the newspaper today of a volunteer who got Adrian Piper's "EVERYTHING WILL BE TAKEN AWAY" hennaed onto his forehead, backwards, so he can read it in the mirror. My colleague at work found it depressing. I suppose it is. But it also, curiously, lightens the load. I pinned the photo up over my desk at work.

Walking through Madison Square Park yesterday evening, I stopped in my tracks to look at the new site-specific work by sculptor Roxy Paine. His stainless steel denuded trees, gleaming in the fading sunlight, interacting with the newly-budding real trees around them--I had to take time to take them in. You can get close to one of them, which already has dog pee making a patina near the base. I'm so jealous. And grateful I got to see it in person. This is what sculpture is supposed to do. I haven't been floored by formalism like this in awhile. If you are in the area, don't miss this stuff. I don't think it's a permanent exhibition. (And you carnivores can eat one of the city's best burgers at the Shack while you're there.)

If you're a Wagner fan (which I am, despite his politics), check out The Tristan Mysteries, Lincoln Center's latest. The video clips here are worth a look. Hold your breath. Sigh.

And if you need to take your breath away with a belly laugh, check out pics of a bear reading Tao Lin's work, courtesy of 3AM magazine. Thank you, Mr. Bear. I only wish I had been there to hear him read.

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