A person who appears to be ambling aimlessly, but is secretly in search of adventure.


More roller derby party pics

Brightest Young Things sent Sexy Fitsum to cover the Barrelhouse roller derby issue launch party at Hillyer last Friday. See his pictures here and here.

My skates. It is a wonder I made it through the evening without hurting myself or anyone else for that matter.

Policy Trunk Party - TONIGHT!

Policy Trunk Show
6 - 9 pm
@ Union Row
2125 14th Street, NW


Mark Jenkins in Barcelona

Trunk Show Thursday night!

Policy Brand
Trunk Show and Launch Party

Thursday July 31
6 - 9 pm
@ Union Row
2125 14th Street, NW



Buy an art collector at auction

UnBeige reports that big time art collectors auctioned themselves off to newbie art collectors last week at the Scope Hampton art fair. It's a fun way to raise money for charity, but I also think that more experienced art collectors ought to be more proactive in general about mentoring less experienced collectors beyond donating their time to a charitable auction.

Art Collectors to Auction Themselves

Concerned about the fate of the art market? What about the art collectors market? We'll be better able to assess the latter after tomorrow evening, when the SCOPE Hamptons art fair kicks off with an auction not of paintings or prints but of art collectors themselves. The first ever "Collector Mentorship Auction" will put up for bid an hour of art mentorship from seasoned collectors, including Beth Rudin DeWoody, Melva Bucksbaum, Adam Lindemann, and Bob Colacello. All of the collectors are donating their time to mentor less experienced art enthusiasts, and the proceeds will benefit the two projects currently backed by the SCOPE Foundation: The Girl Project and The Arctic Circle Project.

Pink surfboard

I finally found the perfect surfboard for me...

Arty stuff this week . . .

Policy Brand Trunk Show
Urban Pop wear for men and women
Created by Billy Colbert
Thursday, July 31
6 - 8 pm
@ Union Row
2125 14th Street, NW

Randall Scott Gallery presents an informal discussion on photojournalism

in association with the Corcoran College of Art + Design

with Peter Van Agtmael and Jessica Dimmock
two time Pulitzer Prize winning Photojournlaist Lucian Perkins

Thursday, July 31
7:30 pm
@ Corcoran College/Museum of Art + Design
Armand Hammer Auditorium

Lecture is free to the public

Interpretive Realms
July 30 - August 31

Opening reception:
Friday, August 1
6 - 8 pm
@ Foundry Gallery
1314 18th Street, NW

Rachel Grad
Friday, August 1
6 - 9 pm
@ Caramel
1603 U Street, NW

August 2 - September 6

Opening Reception:
Saturday, August 2
6 - 8 PM
@ Irvine Contemporary
1412 14th Street, NW

Inked Souls

"Art Whino joins forces with Tagür Footwear to present Inked Souls, an exhibition featuring customized sneakers and fine art by 35 local, national and international leaders in the Pop Surrealism/Urban Contemporary art movement."

Saturday August 2
6 pm – Midnight
@ Art Whino
National Harbor


First photos from Barrelhouse roller derby party

Dramatic reading of roller derby inspired poems and stories at last Friday's Barrelhouse roller derby issue launch party at the Hillyer. See more pictures of the event from Vincent Gallegos here.


"The impact zone can be a wonderful place to find yourself. Surf realization moment, wedge heaven, Brazil." (Photo by Ben DeCamp)

I had an epiphany this weekend while sitting on my surfboard: I need to be sitting on my surfboard a lot more. Expect frequent interruptions in postings here through the hurricane season.


Arm wrestling tonight!

Come by Hillyer tonight for your chance to arm wrestle a roller derby girl! Heck, maybe you'll even get a chance to arm wrestle me! Don't get too excited about the prospect of taking me down because I've been working out extra hard and I'm ready to take you on. Take a look at those guns!

Aspiring artist rejected by art school twice

Sotheby's-AP (left); Bettman-Corbis

A short piece by Jerry Adler in Newsweek:
In their idle moments, historians occasionally speculate on how the world would be different if Adolf Hitler had passed the entrance exam to the Art Academy of Vienna, where he applied (twice) in the early years of the 20th century. Presumably, if he'd been allowed to pursue his dream, he would have inflicted on the world only a large number of mediocre watercolors, rather than World War II and the Holocaust. Contrariwise, the world is better off that a certain British statesman with a gift for inspiring rhetoric never allowed his love of painting to interfere with his career in politics. Otherwise Britain might have gained a trove of derivative post-impressionist landscapes to clutter the antiques shops of Portobello Road, and lost the war to Nazi Germany. One can't help wishing that Hitler had been a better artist—and being grateful that Winston Churchill wasn't.


Up on the roof

You probably know by now how much I like Jeff Koons' work. Jerry Saltz likes it too here in New York Magazine in which he writes about three humongous Koons pieces installed on the roof of New York's Metropolitan Museum. I think Saltz may be touching on why people would pay outrageous prices for "fine" art on cruise ships (see this):
When money and hype recede from the art world, one thing I won’t miss will be what curator Francesco Bonami calls the “Eventocracy.” All this flashy “art-fair art” and those highly produced space-eating spectacles and installations wow you for a minute until you move on to the next adrenaline event. Giant heads made of pots and pans; tigers flying through museums; muscle cars buffed by bikini-clad girls; bronze Hello Kitty sculptures in courtyards; enough plywood, plastic, aluminum, and steel constructions to wall off Mexico from the U.S.—big isn’t necessarily bad, but it isn’t automatically beautiful, either. Some of these projects have been great. Olafur Eliasson’s fluorescent sun-disk, displayed in the Tate Modern’s Turbine Hall in 2003 and 2004, actually got English audiences to momentarily stop reveling in realism in lieu of abstraction. Ditto Doris Salcedo’s work. But most of these “events” are only empty-headed ways of spending money, seducing rubes, saying nothing, and elbowing aside anything smaller, quieter, or riskier. It’s like an Elton John concert. Future generations will see that we passed through a super-mannered period where razzmatazz became an end in itself.
Contemporary art is cool and trendy and filled with exciting events, and lots of folks want a piece of the glitz and glamor. Maybe sailing around on a cruise ship and participating in an art auction on-board makes people feel like they're part of a "scene" if only for a few seafaring days. I love going to art fairs and art parties, but this kind of frenzied, thoughtless art-buying is not something I encourage.


"Do not buy art on cruise ships."

"Do not buy art on cruise ships." So says Mr. Modern Art Notes in response to this article in the New York Times last week about irate art buyers who were disappointed about art they bought at auction on cruise ships. It's hard not to giggle when I think about buying art this way. To say the least, I'm suspicious of buying art aboard any kind of sea craft and from what I can tell from this article, probably would not find the kind of contemporary art I am interested in anyway. But for crying out loud, if you're going to do it, at least do a tiny bit of research ... BEFORE you buy the art. Unlike this guy:

It was only after Mr. Maldonado landed back in California that he did some research on his purchases. Including the buyer’s premium, he had paid $24,265 for a 1964 “Clown” print by Picasso. He found that Sotheby’s had sold the exact same print (also numbered 132 of 200) in London for about $6,150 in 2004.

Jeez. Hard to have sympathy for this Mr. Maldonado. I bet he would buy this picture of George Hamilton made with SPF 30 sunscreen. See here for more giggle-inducing art made from "suspect (questionable) and fugitive (non archival) materials."


Arty stuff this week . . .

Muriel Hasbun
Barbara Liotta

Wednesday, July 23
7 - 9 pm
@ Katzen Center
4400 Massachusetts Avenue, NW

Thursday, July 24
Hip Hop Happy Hour
5 p.m.–6:45 pm
@ National Portrait Gallery
8th and F Streets, NW
Robert and Arlene Kogod Courtyard

Face-to-Face Portrait Talk with curator Jobyl Boone
6 p.m.–6:30 pm
Meet at F Street

Reel Portraits
Paul D. Miller (DJ Spooky) and New York Is Now
7 p.m.; doors open 6:30 p.m.
Nan Tucker McEvoy Auditorium.
A conversation with Paul Miller follows.

To Say the Least
Sarada Conaway, Adam Davies, Patrick McDonough, Ding Ren, Matt Seymour, Imin Yeh
Curated by Faye Gleisser
July 24 – August 4

Opening Reception:
Thursday, July 24
6:30 - 9:30 pm
@ Boiler Gallery
1829 California Street, NW, #33

Barrelhouse Roller Derby Issue Launch Party
Brought to you by The Pink Line Project and Scion

Friday, July 25
6 - 10 pm
@ Hillyer Art Space
Behind the Phillips Collection
21st Street, NW, between Q and R

AAC Closing Party and Panel Discussion
SHE'S SO ARTICULATE: Black Women Artists Reclaim the Narrative

6 - 7 pm
Panel Discussion with Renee Stout, Nekisha Durrett, Torkwase Dyson, Maya Asante, and Stephanie Dinkins, curators Henry Thaggert and Jeffry Cudlin, and moderated by professor of contemporary art at the University of Illinois, Champaign, Terri Weissman.

Party with DJ follows!

Friday, July 25
@ The Arlington Arts Center
3550 Wilson Boulevard

Modern Love
Friday, July 25
@ National Museum of Women in the Arts
1250 New York Avenue, NW

Friday, July 25
9 pm - 1 am

Presented by Civilian Art Projects and Planaria Recordings
@ 406 7th Street, NW, 3rd Floor

- ILYA MONOSOV (Planaria / Holy Mountain / Drag City / Language of Stone)
- DUANE PITRE (Important Records)
- PREE (May from Le Loup)
- SCOTT ALLISON (of Kohoutek)
and DJ sets from ED PORTER and SCOTT BAUER

Saturday, July 26th
@ Civilian Art Projects
406 7th Street, NW, 3rd Floor

Flik Movie Festival and Interactive Exhibit

Saturday, July 26
6 pm
@ Art Whino Gallery
173 Waterfront Street
National Harbor

Through August 20, 2008

Lobby James Hilleary, Paintings from the '60s
Gallery Washington Color School

@ Osuna gallery
7200 Wisconsin Avenue

Port Towns Music History Mural
Sunday, July 27
3 pm
@ Mango Cafe


Policy launch

The Pink Line Project is helping Billy Colbert launch his line of Urban Pop mens and womens wear under the brand name Policy. Please come to the launch party!

Policy Brand Trunk Show & Launch Party
Thursday, July 31
6 - 8 pm
2125 14th Street, NW

Music by DJ Anish!

Thanks to our sponsors!
The Velvet Lounge
Busboys & Poets

East Wing needs more space

Tyler Green wrote an interesting article about the National Gallery East Wing's space problems.

In the coming months, the NGA will undertake efforts to address its major issues: the inconsistent quality of the 20th- and 21st-century collections, the awkward way they’re installed, and the NGA’s need for more space.

The East Building’s weaknesses are legendary: The atrium dominates, making the building feel like an atrium with a couple of art-display spaces attached. The galleries are awkward and incoherently spread through the building. They’re too big or too small. There are too few of them. Every gallery but one is cut off from natural light.

“The display of modern or contemporary art doesn’t live up to the architecture even though the architecture is now 30 years old,” says Michael Brand, director of the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles.


Noche Crist liked pink

Noche Crist loved the color pink. She was a very wise woman. See review by Michael O'Sullivan of her show at the Katzen here.


Fish net stockings

I love this line from a post that C-Monster linked to about Jocelyn Foye’s Roller Derby Project:
They’re still both wearing fishnet, which really transfers well to clay, ...
More on the project here. I'm not really into these "sculptures," but slamming into a wall of clay at high speed on roller skates looks like a lot of fun.


High brow graf

(Thanks yet again to C-Monster!)

Barrelhouse launch party

First Ever Roller Derby Themed Barrelhouse Issue 6 Launch and Arm Wrestling Extravaganza!
Brought to you by Scion and The Pink Line Project

To celebrate Roller Derby, a protofeminist wave of bone crushing awesomeness, we bring you a night of amazing roller derby themed stories and poems and one gigantic Roller Derby mural by Cory Oberndorfer, food eating, beverage drinking, DJ dancing, and (damn well better!) Barrelhouse buying.

AND, you get to arm wrestle a Roller Derby Girl!! IF YOU DARE!

Friday, July 25
6 - 10 pm
@ Hillyer Art Space
Behind the Phillips Collection
(on 21st Street, between Q and R)

$10 at the door / Free food and drink!
Barrelhouse Issues available for $5!
And a chance to get your ass (or arm) personally kicked by a roller derby chick.


Communitarianism as art

MAN isn't impressed with the Fritz Haeg installation in the Cottage Industry show at the Baltimore Contemporary Museum. I haven't seen it, but I know and admire his work as an activist who uses art to convey ideas. And the concept of communitarianism-as-art sure does appeal to me. (Although it's hard for me to imagine myself as somewhere between hippie and hipster!) And so does the idea of providing a place to nurture ideas. Sorta like a Washington think tank but for art. A Kunsthalle is just what DC needs.
Haeg is a leading figure in an increasing trend toward communitarianism-as-art. If we feel good about what someone is doing and want to be a part of it, so the art world's approach seems to be, let's claim it as art and feel good about getting together. It's where hippie meets hipster.

All that said, even if the Haeg here is a 60-year old idea with origins in wartime Britain, he fits what Cottage Industry is: A show that works hard to avoid art objects, that's more interested in a post-Brooklyn/Silver Lake utopia. Sure, a lot of the work here isn't really art, but it isn't really anything else either. That's fine. It's refreshing to see a kunsthalle such as the Baltimore Contemporary used as an idea lab. But of all the 'presentations' here, Haeg's is the least original and the least exciting. I'll get to the 'exciting' tomorrow.


Arty stuff this week . . .

Screams and Screens Happy Hour
Wednesday, July 16
6 - 10 pm
@ Civilian Art Projects
406 7th Street, NW

DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities
FY 2009 Visual Arts Applicants' Showcase
July 17 - August 1

Opening Reception:
Wednesday, July 16
6:30 PM
@ Katzen Arts Center
American University
4400 Massachusetts Ave., NW

Artscape 2008
July 18 - 20

Thursday, July 17
6 - 8 pm
@ Charles Street Bridge, Baltimore, MD (North of Penn Station & South of
Lanvale Street)

Zenith in the Abstract
July 17 – August 30
Artists: John Blee, Chris Hayman, Anne Marchand, David Richardson, Bill Suworoff

Meet the artists:
Thursday, July 17
6 - 9 pm

Saturday, July 19
3 - 5 pm

@ Zenith Gallery
413 7th Street, NW

HOME: Spoken Word Poetry Series
Friday, July 18
6 - 9 pm
6 pm Sign up
7 - 9 pm Open mic
@ Hillyer Art Space
9 Hillyer Court

All Member Show
Friday, July 18
6 - 8 pm
@ Studio gallery
2108 R Street, NW