Keeping It Surreal: Melvin Van Peebles, DJ Spooky, More at Performa’s ‘Black Surrealism’ Conference

The after party. (The New York Observer)

“Surreal” is a slippery word. No longer used to refer exclusively to the art movement that began in the 1920s, the term is tossed around as a synonym for “dreamlike” or “bizarre.” It has been so stripped of its subversive content that reality television has even co-opted it (see The Surreal Life, which documented a bunch of has-been celebrities living together—there were meltdowns, but they were nothing like Dalí’s clocks). Read More


Bard Day’s Night: Partying in the Parliament of Reality

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Performance of Chelsea Knight and Elise Rasmussen's I Am Not a Man, Not Now, 2011–2012

Amtrak, you might say, summoning your best theory-speak, is known for its eternal deferrals. Arriving at Penn Station for a 7:15 a.m. departure, Gallerist found the Toronto-bound train indefinitely delayed. Mercifully, “indefinite” in this case meant “one hour,” and before we knew it we were shuttling north, glancing every once in a while across the aisle, where a 22nd Street gallery director was deeply absorbed in Chris Kraus’s I Love Dick: like us, she was headed to Bard College for a day of panels, openings and performances celebrating the 20th anniversary of the Center for Curatorial Studies. (“I should get a book jacket!” she exclaimed later.) Read More


Who’s in Sharjah Right Now? A Bounty of New Yorkers!

Photo courtesy Plamen Galabov

Some New Yorkers are in Sharjah, in the United Arab Emirates, for the March Meeting 2012 at the moment. What is the March Meeting, you ask? Though the title brings to mind March Madness, this yearly gathering of artists, curators and institutions has nothing to do with basketball.

In fact, it’s the fifth installment of a yearly event for artists, curators and institutions presented by the Sharjah Art Foundation to discuss the creation and presentation of art in the region and internationally. Peter Eleey, Eungie Joo, and Alanna Heiss are just some of the art-world luminaries assembled there right now. Read More