November 2009 archives

Last week while walking to the Bill Viola exhibit, I stumbled upon the Ippudo gallery and its exhibit of Shinya Yamamura's lacquerware tea utensils. The pieces are exquisitely crafted miniatures and are elegantly presented. I felt as if I could have been transported to Tokyo for the exhibit, save for the New York street scenes just outside the window.

Yamamura is currently a professor at the College of art in Kanazawa. Two years ago, while visiting Japan, I passed through Kanazawa and was surprised to discover its 21st Century Musem of Contemporary Art. I had gone to Kanazawa to see the Kenrokuen Gardens (via a roundabout route from Kyoto to Tokyo) and was unaware that the museum existed. I had only an afternoon to spare, but decided to quickly make my way through its galleries. I was glad I did, and wished I had had more time to spend in the city. (I also had the best sushi dinner of any on that trip in that fair city.)

While researching the last post I noticed Kapoor's Origin du Monde on his site. It looked familiar and I could have sworn I had seen it in person. It turns out I have. It is installed at the 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, in Kanazawa.

November 25, 2009

Anish Kapoor: Memory

Photograph by David Heald.

Yesterday I went to the Guggenheim to see the Kandinsky exhibit. As I was leaving I stopped to visit Anish Kapoor's massive site-specific installation, Memory. The piece left a lasting impression that overshadowed the show I had gone to see.

Wedged into a corner of the museum, the piece is visible only piecemeal. There are three entry points into the work, and it proves to be at once alien and deeply personal. When peering into the piece it envelops you, encouraging you to enter into its warm, dark interior. A guard is stationed to keep one from doing just that accidentally. Stepping away from the opening, the piece takes on a two-dimensional aspect, appearing as a painting of deep richness hanging upon the wall.

Walking around the galleries to explore the exterior of the work, the inability to see it all at once gives the impression of an even greater size as the mind works to encompass the piece so as to understand its scale. The mind must work even harder to understand both the finite steel exterior of the work and the seemingly limitless volume of its interior.

The Guggenheim has a website with more information on the construction and installation fo the work, as well as an introductory video in which both Kapoor and Sandhini Poddar, Assistant Curator of Asian Art, talk about the work. More of Kapoor's work can be found on his website.

By eugene at 9:16 AM | 1 comment | Tags: ,

November 24, 2009

The Lighthouse Keeper

The Lighthouse Keeper is an animated film created by David François, Rony Hotin, Jérémie Moreau, Baptiste Rogron, Gaëlle Thierry, and Maïlys Vallade, students in their third year of study at Gobelins L'Ecole de L'Image. It's a fantastic piece of work; I love the way in which light is rendered and used as much for visual effect as for storytelling purposes. Their individual blogspot pages have samples of their other work, as well as production sketches for The Lighthouse Keeper. I eagerly await their next project(s).

By eugene at 12:44 AM | 2 comments | Tags: ,

November 23, 2009

Bill Viola’s Bodies of Light

The James Cohan Gallery is currently hosting an exhibit of Bill Viola's work entitled Bodies of Light. Viola himself explains some of the work (both conceptually and technically) in this video made on the premiere of some of the work at the Venice Biennale, 2007.

The work is intensely spiritual and incredibly beautiful. Thinking about it now, my mind is drawn also to Wim Wenders' Wings of Desire.

By eugene at 8:42 AM | 1 comment | Tags: ,

November 22, 2009

226 redesigned

It's been a long-time coming, but I've finally redesigned 226. I'll move the old site somewhere on the server and link to it so people who are curious can see what it used to look like, but that will take a little doing. I've streamlined the new site somewhat and edited down the content. Things might be a little wonky for a few days (especially on these blog pages) as I try to clean up the css and move things around, so please bear with me.

Some may notice that I've removed the photography area of this site. I've decided to separate out my photography, which can now be found at Fotokuo. However, I'll link back out to some of the old projects as far as they reflect the design I've done on them. I'll also set up link forwarding so that former links won't break after I reorganize my directories.

As far as this blog, I'm planning to have it be a place where I can write about my projects and the things that interest me, including links to work I admire or enjoy. In a way, it'll be the continuation of shall we dansu, which I'll probably retire. I didn't want to just import all the content from that blog, however; I wanted to see what voice this blog might develop going forward. We'll see how things evolve. In the meantime, thanks for visiting during this soft launch period. And if you have any thoughts on the redesign, please leave a comment.

By eugene at 10:05 AM | Leave a comment | Tags: ,