Gonzalez-Torres Free Tibet Sweater

“Untitled”, 1991, handloomed wool rug, 2.4 x 1.8m, ed. 25? via Equator Production

So on my journey from WTF to “Yes, please!” on the Felix Gonzalez-Torres “Free Tibet” rug edition that was later declared to be non-work, I passed the following:

It’s not just that Equator Production was using weavers and non-profits associated with the Tibetan diaspora in India to make their carpets. 1991 was also officially, The Year of Tibet.

And 1988 was the year of Tiger Rugs of Tibet having a breakout show at the Hayward Gallery in London, so the specific Tibetan Buddhist tradition of tiger-motif prayer rugs and monastery rugs had been launched in the West. Even if Felix didn’t see the Hayward show, there was a lush catalogue. In 1991 ABC Carpet in New York had a Year of Tibetan Tiger Rug collection. So it was around.

Kapital Wool Nepal Crewneck Sweater $611, NOT AVAILABLE, via Stag Provisions

What is not around is the Nepal Tiger Crewneck Sweater which Japanese heritage denim brand Kapital dropped in F/W 2019. But it still replaced every idea I had about repeating Felix’s Free Tibet carpet with a vision of these:

study for Gonzalez-Torres Free Tibet Sweater, 2024, ed. 25? Maybe available in Fall, if not in China

Whatever the edition, one will be set aside for the reincarnation of Sturtevant.

Previously: That Felix Gonzalez-Torres Carpet

NYABF Drop: Untitled (Grave Matters), 2024

In 2014 art historian Anna C. Chave presented an absolute banger of a talk at a symposium organized by Dia as part of the Carl Andre retrospective. Chave laid out how art world figures and institutions, including the curators and catalogue contributors of Dia’s show, stayed silent on Andre’s involvement in the death of his wife Ana Mendieta, but still could not manage to ignore it completely. It is truly a damning reading, and all the more extraordinary for taking place at Andre’s show, at Dia’s invitation.

In the revised version published in the Winter 2014 edition of CAA’s Art Journal, titled, “Grave Matters: Positioning Carl Andre at Career’s End,” she even called out the organizers of the symposium for changes to the format that appeared intended to head off any possibility that the artist and the curators might face any questioning from—or even any engagement with—Chave.

a spread from Untitled (Grave Matters), 2024, an artist publication by greg.org

One thing Chave discussed was an anomalous and macabre sculpture Andre included in his first New York exhibitions after his acquittal for Mendieta’s murder. Titled Large Door (1988)—a pun, Chave argues on, l’Age d’Or—it was actually a window, with a gash in it. Robert Katz mentioned it at the end of his 1990 book on Andre’s trial, Naked At The Window, but it was only published for the first time in Dia’s catalogue.

Andre refused to give Chave permission to reproduce Large Door and another work she discussed, a photo of a vase of roses on Andre’s apartment balcony, in her essay.

So to celebrate New York Art Book Fair Weekend, I am releasing Untitled (Grave Matters), 2024, a new artist book, which comprises JSTOR screenshots of Chave’s essay, with the missing images added. I will mail a signed and stamped edition to anyone who requests one this weekend, just email me to tell me where to send it. After that, we’ll see.

[We have seen, and they are done, thank you to all who engaged!]

[note: your information will only be used to send you an art zine.]

Read “Grave Matters: Positioning Carl Andre at Career’s End” and other of Chave’s publications on her site [annachave.com]
Read “Grave Matters” in Art Journal, W2014 [jstor]

Virtual Mural With Girl With A Pearl

Mural With Girl With A Pearl, 2023, paint on plaster, Vermeer painting, as installed at Rijksmuseum

It was the exhibition of the year, and it was truly an unexpected honor to be a part of it. The Rijksmuseum’s Vermeer exhibition lives online in a 360-degree panoramic version, and I’m thrilled to confirm that Mural With Girl With A Pearl (2023) can also still be experienced and studied virtually.

Like the Vermeer it incorporates, Mural With Girl With A Pearl deploys paint to hint at a spatial complexity that extends beyond the field of vision. And it also relies on subtle shifts of light to activate its painterly gestures. That these nuances can be communicated in the mediated experience of the virtual pseudo-space is truly a testament to the enduring magic of painting.

Vermeer 360 [rikjsmuseum.nl thanks Alain Servais]
Previously: Mural With Girl With A Pearl (2023)

Happy Joan Mitchell Season

Happy Joan Mitchell Season, 2023, screenprint on cotton and inkjet, pen, and offset on paper

Glad to hear the Joan Mitchell Season shirts are arriving. They took a little longer than expected, and the COA did, too, so apologies if you didn’t get yours in time to wear in Miami. Anyway, I thought we were boycotting Florida atm.

The Second Deposition of Richard Prince (2023)

It feels like worlds ago, and world ago all the way down. And also just yesterday.

For a few hours in the Summer of 2023, an Instagram account that tracks the work of artist Richard Prince posted a picture of a rusty shoe tree, standing in front of an abstract painting. It echoed the original image of Marcel Duchamp’s Fountain, which Alfred Stieglitz photographed in front of a Marsden Hartley painting in 1917.

Marcel Duchamp’s Fountain, photographed in front of Marsden Hartley’s The Warriors on April 19, 1917 by Alfred Stieglitz

The Instagram image included text elements: DEPOSITION above and RICHARD PRINCE below, with a url and password to an unlisted video file. The video, more than six hours long, appeared to be a recording of Richard Prince’s deposition in a pair of conjoined lawsuits filed by photographers Donald Graham and Eric McNatt, in 2015 and 2016, respectively. Both men objected to photos they took, posted to Instagram by others, which appeared in Prince’s 2014 New Portraits series.

Continue reading “The Second Deposition of Richard Prince (2023)”

Cady Noland More Relevant Than I’d Like

The New Yorker cover illustration, 2 Oct 2023, by Bruce Blitt

Shoutout to Cady Noland for making the cover of The New Yorker this week. We have been overdue for a discussion of the walker as a symbol of American boomer hegemony.

Cady Noland, Untitled (Walker), 1986, metal walker, metal police badge, leather gloves and case, denim strap, leather strap with metal clip, nylon strap with metal clip, copyright Cady Noland, photo: Owen Conway via Gagosian

cf.

Untitled (Harvey After Untitled (Walker)), 2019, walker, tennis balls, retractable stanchions, galvanized barrier, stepstool, hi-viz coat (image:AFP via Getty Images via PageSix)

Untitled (AUS), 2023 [UPDATED]

Untitled (AUS) and USM(ono)C(hrome), 2023, installation view, via CNN Pentagon correspondent Oren Liebermann

The second in what I guess will be an ongoing series. Any Republican senator could end this installation at any time.

MONDAY MONOCHROME UPDATE: Now the Navy makes it a triptych.

Untitled (AUS), Untitled (USN), and USM(ono)C(hrome), installation view,
14 Aug 2023, via Lara Seligman

Previously, related: USM(ono)C(hrome), 2023

Underground Projection Room (For Rattlesnakes)

Robert Smithson, Underground Projection Room (Utah Museum Plan), 1971, graphite on paper, 9×11.75 inches, lot 145 @ LA Modern, 21 June 2023

According to the friend of my mom’s whose family used to own the ranch land on and around Rozel Point, the basalt-strewn hill above the Spiral Jetty is full of rattlesnake dens. I don’t know if Robert Smithson knew this when he picked the site, but I doubt it. He was more focused on the scenic qualities: the pink salt water of the Great Salt Lake, and the collapsed oil derrick a little further along the shore.

I’ve thought about it a lot, though, especially when I think about Smithson’s original plan to show the Spiral Jetty film on a continuous loop in an underground screening room on the site. A sketch for that idea (above) will be sold next week at LA Modern auction house.

Which is as good an occasion as any to propose that Smithson’s idea be realized. For the snakes.

greg.org, Study for Underground Projection Room For Snakes, 2023

As half the human population on earth knows, tiny flatscreens are a thing. And so is solar power. Smithson’s film, Spiral Jetty, is 36 minutes long and can easily fit on a micro SD card that plugs into an Arduino-compatible 60×94 pixel TinyScreen+, which can be lowered into the snake den.

The TinyScreen+ next to a US quarter, $39.95 at TinyCircuits.com

A small solar panel on the surface, connected to a battery connected to the Tinyscreen down below will keep the movie streaming endlessly, or until the heat death of the planet, whichever comes first. Before installing them for the snakes, I think I need to make a small edition of prototypes first. And to start by extracting out my copy of the film from the not-solid-state external drive. Fingers crossed that this project isn’t over before it starts

A Little Bit of Roy Lichtenstein for Mark

Richard Hamilton, A Little Bit of Roy Lichtenstein, 1964, 23×26 in, screenprint, given to Mark Lancaster and sold at Sotheby’s for $4,064.

During his 1963 visit to the US to see Duchamp’s Pasadena retrospective, Richard Hamilton also picked up a Roy Lichtenstein poster/lithograph from Castelli. When he got back to the UK, he enlarged a tiny section to make his own two-color print edition, A Little Bit of Roy Lichtenstein for…, which he liked to give away to friends.

Today A Little Bit of Roy Lichtenstein for Mark sold at Sotheby’s, part of the collection of the artist Mark Lancaster, who studied with Hamilton, and who shot the photos for Hamilton’s translation of The Green Box. [His copy of it sold today, too.] Lancaster worked in Warhol’s Factory in 1964 while working on his dissertation on Stieglitz, and from 1972 until 1985, worked as Jasper Johns’ assistant and business manager [a lot of nice Johns prints in the sale, btw.] and as artistic director for the Merce Cunningham Dance Company. He somehow survived all that and only died in 2021. Gary Comenas did an amazing interview with Mark Lancaster for warholstars.org in 2004.

Continue reading “A Little Bit of Roy Lichtenstein for Mark”

Untitled (Free As In America), 2016/2023

America by Budweiser, available from Memorial Day thru Election Day, 2016.

Beginning the Spring of 2016 and running through the Fall, I put out Untitled (Free As In America), a series of Cady Noland sculptures replicated with the America beer cans that Anheuser-Busch InBev replaced Budweiser with in the run-up to the US presidential election. The concept was to remake any sculpture for only the cost of the raw materials it required.

Exactly none of these sculptures were realized in the window in which Budweiser’s America cans were available.

You see it. I’m not mentioning it or linking to it.

Now the window has reopened. As the right wing is consumed by its own flames of hate and violence, it seeks to transform that hate into consumption. Recognizing the futility of icing out the giant, international beer conglomerate for paying a trans woman to promote one of their products on her own social media channel, some grifter created an alternative: right-wing beer.

Cady Noland, This Piece Has No Title Yet, 1989, Budweiser and scaffolding and stuff, the Rubells

As long as this beer is actually for sale, then, I will make Untitled (Free As In America) sculptures available again. I will replicate any Cady Noland sculpture, replacing the Budweiser cans with perfect replicas of—when I started this post, it was going to be replicas of the grift beer. But no, it will be replicas of the 2016 America cans, made by the finest trans metallurgists and artists in the world. All proceeds beyond the production costs will be used to fund trans legal defense, health care, and emergency support services. Prices run from $100 million for a basket to $1 billion for a room-sized installation.

ONE DAY LATER UNBELIEVABLE UPDATE: In a statement literally titled, Our Responsibility To America, Anheuser-Busch InBev caves to trolls attacking their product and threatening humans with baseball bats. To update Cady Noland, “Violence has always been around. The seeming [systematization] of it now actually indicates the [work] of political organization representing different interests. ‘Inalienable rights’ become something so inane that they break down into men believing that they have the right to be superior to women (there’s someone lower on the ladder than they) so if a woman won’t date them any more they have a right to murder them.”

A FEW DAYS LATER UPDATE: I joked about it, but now other people investigating the grifter’s sourcing are saying it is actually likely the case that the rightwing grifterbeer is made in an Anheuser-Busch plant. It’s America all the way down.

Previously, related: Free As In America

Untitled (Koch Block I), 2014/2023

On Tuesday, September 9, 2014, The Metropolitan Museum of Art enacted what historian Daniel J. Boorstin called a pseudo-event. It was intended to draw public attention to David Koch, a right-wing extremist whose inherited fossil fuel fortune funds a vast network of politicians, judges, lobbyists, and ideologues that has pursued power in its own service for decades.

A small fraction of his wealth, $65 million, was used to redo the plaza in front of the Met, where Koch was a trustee. The main feature is a pair of large, square, fountains of black granite, with circles of choreographed water jets. The fountains are ringed by a rough cut black granite seating ledge that bears the inscription, David H. Koch Plaza, in gilt letters.

Untitled (Koch Block), 2014 — ongoing, performance/condition, documented in 2018

In 2017 I made a work of an endless, collaborative performance of negation, where the Met’s millions of visitors and passersby, New Yorkers and outsiders alike, continuously sit in a way that blocks this aggrandizing, carved text from view. That piece is called Untitled (Koch Block), and it is still in process. Please join it whenever you’re nearby.

But there is another work, a predecessor, unearthed only recently, through a search for something else, I already forget what. On the 9th of September, the Metropolitan Museum invited the Kochs—David and his wife, Julia, whose first socialite outing in New York was co-chairing the Met Gala in 1997, a year after their marriage—to flip the switch on the fountain for the media assembled, and in the presence of local politicians and functionaries, museum leaders, neighborhood schoolchildren, and a youth chorus dressed in white and wearing red gloves, who sang a dissonant arrangement of “New York, New York.”

Here is the switch.

Untitled (Koch Block I), wood, steel, paint, old Met logo, est. 48 x 24 x 24 in., installed September 9, 2014. photo for Getty Images by Paul Zimmerman via WireImage
Continue reading “Untitled (Koch Block I), 2014/2023”