30 May

Love in the time of Polarization

“Love” in a few different scripts on a shape shifting element – water.  Love and fear are two motivating emotions, the only two emotions that drive mankind, the only two advertisers and media gurus need to keep in mind.  In a free country one would assume that Love would be the only currency.  However, with the deep polarization worldwide, It may be particularly timely to revisit love in the eve of artist Robert Indiana’s passing, who was known for his Love series.  He died at 89 in his secluded island home off the coast of Maine, all by himself.  NY Times reports that “In a federal lawsuit filed Friday, a day before, he passed, a company that says it has long held the rights to several of Mr. Indiana’s best-known works proposed an answer, arguing in court papers that the caretaker and a New York art publisher had tucked the artist away while they churned out unauthorized or adulterated versions of his work.”

“Love” in a few different scripts on a shape shifting element – water.

Love urges allegiance and incites riots coup and wars.  With a deep ideological divide worldwide, one is prone to ask if indeed the flavor of love is changing.  Illusory as it may be in nature, there are expectations one develops from love, or in one’s allegiance towards the object of love.  These works address the  shift that we are be all going through in the understanding of love.  The Orlando mass shoot out and the many consequent shootings in clubs, schools, places of worship and other public places ever since, reflecting the shadow side of love, also makes one wonder about the shifting shape of love if only for the frequency at which it has been happening.

 

28 May

The Artist, the Marketer and the People @ SF Moma

Popular songs may have a catchy tune, but they’re only popular from being played over and over and over again on the radio till the listeners internalize the sound and lyrics.  Visual art, despite its need to stand the test of time is circulated over and over again, written about, spoken about in elevated diction, spent stupid money on, until they become ensconced into the minds of its audience.

Where does the artist play a part in all of this? Historically, he or she does not. His work evolves until it reaches the place where it permeates the psyche of the art lover/ collector, leading to his popularity and spiking price of artworks! Hence we view with bewilderment  Picasso’s early works of forlorn realistic faces, Gerard Richter’s early portraits as if in motion with blurry borders, perhaps suggesting the temporality of a situation, and Warhol’s early portraits such as the one of Elvis capturing the movements of a rock star and sold for chump change of $30M and wonder what carved the journey of these artists?! Until such time that the artist himself smartens up to the machinations of marketing and blasts his audience with mass-produced dots,  I’m not naming names here!

The tall spider holds its ground for all future women artists to find a place in a prestigious museum collection.    Twombly’s black board scribble rings in class room nostalgia at a ticket sale of $70 million at Southeby’s recently!  The children enjoyed running through the maze of Richard Serra’s large sculpture one of whose unsung merits might well be its indestructible quality!  I was not important enough to view the René Magritte’s special exhibit which only donors and patrons were privy to at the time of my visit.  A day later is when I could view it with the rest of the Joe Schmo!

The newly renovated San Francisco MOMA smaller than the one in NYC exhibited all of the iconic artists cleverly establishing at a glance the journey of the artist.  Worth it!

08 May

Mothers and Daughters

Mothers and daughters can have the most intimate and selfless bond or the most toxic one full of power play, however it is – it strengthens us in its wholesomeness as much as in its void.  The collection of works that came along organically over a period of time, all have to do with motherhood in some form, real or metaphorical.