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Assignments and research in Manhattan

16th Oct 2015

Painting workshop :Assignment :Research an artist at a Contemporary Art Gallery in Manhattan and write an essay. I chose Archibald Motley at Whitney Museum of Modern Art

ARCHIBALD MOTLEY: JAZZ AGE MODERNIST Motley’s paintings engage with energetic scenes life in Chicago, Paris and Mexico.The Jazz Age deals with the political and artistic background of the Harlem Renaissance . He began to work with a colour palette that was considered discordant at the time. His use of colour is remarkable, he uses a lot of ‘hot’ neon colours and choses mainly artificial light.

Motley plays with spatial distortion and jarring hues to produce striking settings for characters of diverse racial backgrounds and social classes.He was very involved with the Civil Rights Movement in the US.

17th Oct - A quick trip back to London for my son’s graduation and I got the chance to see Ai Wei Wei at the Royal Academy.

Outside Royal Academy and Chandelier made from Bicycles

22nd Oct - Unbelievably today the temp reached 71 degrees at 3pm. We have had some cool weather as well , but even the New Yorkers are amazed at how prolonged the summer has been. The sunshine draws me out of my room and away from the laptop , to Jefferson Park in

West Village -to sit and read with a coffee from Porto Rico Coffee Shop on Blecker Street…… heaven.

Peter Longo, in front of his store, the Porto Rico Importing Company. CreditPhilip Greenberg for The New York Times :Peter Longo, one of 66 contributors who wrote essays for “Greenwich Village Stories: A Collection of Memories,” was sharing some family history in celebration of the book. His family lived here, in the same house on Bleecker Street, for more than a century. In this transient big city, he sees small-town continuity.

The only reference book I have with me from UK is ‘The Poetics of Space’ and I’m so glad as it’s recommended reading for Sculpture 2 here and is now making a lot more sense to me!

Assignment: Sculpture 1 :Take an object or objects and transform them :

I gathered together all the plastic packaging from one weeks ‘consumption’ and using a heat gun,melted it and fused it - but forgot to photograph!

One becomes very resourceful when art materials need to be inexpensive and transportable in a rucksack!

Assignment Ceramics : Make 5 pieces based on a Morandi Still Life

The colours of Frida Khalo’s garden inspired me.

Assignment Ceramics: Gallery Visit ,write a short essay on 'A Part of, a Parting' EUN-HA PAEK

at Jane Hartsook Gallery. The artist is also an animator which is very evident in her work.

This work is purely sculptural and has a clear narrative .

When one first looks at the work it appears to be entirely humorous, playful , and fantasy based, then on closer observation you see the slightly horrific touches of a claw protruding from the angelic hand of a girl and the cloudy eyes of a snarling animal holding a creature aloft !

Assignment Sculpture 1 : Get a copy of the New York Times and read the Exhibition reviews written by the Critics. (This is always in the Friday edition). This week’s paper has an extensive review of Frank Stella’s retrospective which opened at the Whitney on Friday.

I must admit the group crits at Queens College are very enlightening under the guidance of Prof Leib. We have bi weekly crits - we are a very diverse group ethnically and creatively. Once again , I’m aware of opening my mind to new ideas , letting go, and always remaining teachable.

Assignment Sculpture 2 : Time and Timelessness :To use time based and /or time sensitive materials than can erode , evaporate, condense, leave residue, multiply. To invoke at least 2 senses. I have some ideas – not surprising after all the art I’ve seen here! This work below is inspired by Louise Wiltshire and

Sarah Lucas. This is an idea I’d like to develop when I get back to Chichester.

I have joined the nearest library to the Markle Residence ; It has a limited amount of books on Art. However they have a great stock of DVDs which is handy as I have no TV ! The library is part of the New York library system and you can order books to be delivered to your local branch ,so no problem. It does make me appreciate the wealth of reference books we have access to at Chichester – I have also been able to get into the e library system on the Chi Uni website successfully from here which is useful for research.

I went back to the New Museum of Art down on Bowery to see Jim Shaw’s work which filled three floors of the gallery- massive in scale and full of narrative.

I joined a health club on 6th Avenue when I got here in order to do pilates and prevent my back from playing up. It’s pretty hard core stuff here when I compare with the Westgate in Chichester, and there are some amazingly agile folk who attend the classes! Here they do a cross between Pilates and Yoga called Piyo !

25th Oct . I was invited to attend The Onassis Foundation Symposium at The Olympic Tower 5th Ave The question discussed was ‘What Does it Mean to Be a World Citizen?’ There was a panel of five people ,Pico Iyer , Novelist Elizabeth Diller , Architect of The Highline Orhan Pamuk , Writer (Nobel Prize Laureate ) Kwame Anthony Appiah ,Prof of Philosophy NYU Susan Meiselas, Photographer, Magnum Foundation- an interesting debate and recorded for TV.