Saturday, March 29, 2008


Today I traversed to Pier 40 with a dear friend to witness the 2008 PULSE contemporary Art Fair. It was this incredible display on a pier of international art work. The place was enormous, there was so much work I know that I did not get to encounter everything though we saw the bulk. I was a little disappointed because it was comprised of mostly conventional 2d work, though this being a 'fair' it makes sense that the 'type' of art was catering to collectors/buyers/profits/commodity etc. All the fun things about the art world in which i abhor. Not too many placards discussing the concept or meaning (that is if there was really any?) it seemed to be alot of eyecandy succumbing to the conventions of 'beauty'. To sum up my good friend dave hickey, once a viewer's eye is met with something "beautiful"/"pretty"/"conventionally nice and pleasing" the work stops there, further inspection and probing ceases. Which is why beautiful images become so problematic- which may be why i could not delve deeper to find such a compelling message. 

Awesome things include:
Sameness, Difference and Desire
Curated by Bill Arning

In making sense of the visual world the human eye scans constantly, and then when objects of interest are identified the mind is engaged and starts making distinctions with other previously identified objects,; Are they the same or different? If different, how are they different? If the same, are they the same, similar or two iterations of the same phenomenon? This is true if the objects under consideration are fellow humans or products on the supermarket shelf. Somehow in this visual perusal the close examination leads to inchoate feelings of desire, some for sameness, some for difference. In this selection of international video artists this process of comparison provoking desire is replayed in each video in ways that are also both exactly the same and completely different

Mary Coble
Blood Script, 2008

In Marker New York (2006), DC (2007) and Madrid (2008) Mary Coble stood silently while passersby wrote in marker on her body derogatory words they had been called or had used against others. In Blood Script, these documented hateful insults will be tattooed onto Coble’s skin without ink. Ornate script will create a dichotomy between beautiful visual forms of the words and the horrible meanings they convey.

Words will appear in blood as needles penetrate Coble’s skin. Contact prints will be made of each word by pressing paper against the incisions. As they are created, blood impressions will be displayed on the wall.

In a related performance, Note to Self (2005), Coble had names of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans-gendered hate-crime murder victims tattooed on herself in inkless block letters. The blood prints and documentation are in the collection of the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, D.C.

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