Marina Abramović has big ambitions to transform the sleepy town of Hudson in upstate New York into an international mecca for performance art and other time-based work. On Aug. 12, the global art star hosted an open house in the future site of the Marina Abramović Institute (MAI), a 20,000-square-foot downtown Hudson building that she purchased in 2007. The local community, along with some vacationing New York art world denizens, was invited in for a first look at the space. A disused theater built in 1929, the structure subsequently served as an indoor tennis court and most recently as a market for antique architectural fixtures.
There wasn't much to see in the gutted space last Sunday, except for a new roof that Abramović said was the only construction completed so far. Also on view were models of the Institute designed by the architectural firm OMA, led by Rem Koolhaas and Shohei Shigematsu.
"When Pablo informed me that nobody would leave a man like him, I said ‘Ha! That we will see!' Pablo should not have provoked my aggressiveness," Françoise Gilot told John Richardson in a frank interview published in the catalogue for "Picasso and Françoise Gilot: Paris-Vallauris, 1943–1953." The exhibition, currently on view at Gagosian in New York [through June 30], centers on an emotional partnership and artistic dialogue between two painters that spanned over a decade.
When the pair met in Paris, near the end of World War II, Gilot was 21 and Picasso 62. He was already famous, but she wasn't a fan. She preferred the work of his former collaborator and rival, Braque, which caused Picasso considerable consternation. The couple did, however, share a deep admiration for Matisse, whom they frequently visited in the South of France after the war. The wide range of works in the show—some 250 paintings, works on paper, sculptures and ceramics by Picasso, plus a gallery filled with 30 representative examples of Gilot's paintings and drawings—proves that despite their often rocky relationship, the period was mostly buoyant and exceptionally fruitful for both artists.
As the art-world spotlight shines on Philadelphia this weekend in anticipation of the Barnes Foundation debut in center city, several other local art institutions are hoping to divert some of the visitor influx with events and exhibitions. Not far from the Barnes, the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts (PAFA), housed in the famous 1876 Frank Furness-George W. Hewitt Victorian Gothic extravaganza, hosts "PAFA and Dr. Barnes." This focused exhibition examines the intimate and complex relationship between the Academy and the eccentric—and prescient—Philadelphia-born collector Albert C. Barnes.
Following on the heels of the recently released documentary Gerhard Richter Painting, another cinematic study of a painter in action (though not exactly an action painter), Painter: Caio Fonseca directed by Michael Gregory, premiered at the Museum of Modern Art on April 18. Both films take a remarkably similar approach to exploring the working methods of their artist subjects. The films shows how, with considerable aplomb, Fonseca—using sponges and pizza cutters—and Richter—with knives and squeegees—paint colorful abstractions made of copious amounts of pigment. But when it comes to offering some insight into the artists' works, each film is stingy in different but similarly frustrating ways.
The Art Show, the annual event on view this weekend, Mar. 7–11, at the Park Avenue Armory at 67 Street in New York, put on by the Art Dealers Association of America, is nothing more and nothing less than an unapologetic, self-congratulatory celebration of this exclusive club. Some of the nation's top dealers are here, and they aim to impress the public with quality offerings as well as try to prove that there really is such a thing as art-world camaraderie in the cut-throat business of blue-chip art sales. And it's all for a worthy cause. The event's opening night festivities raise millions of dollars to support the many charitable endeavors of the Henry Street Settlement.
Collage and acrylic on paper, thread, string, plastic lid
48 x 30 ¼ in.