There was no polling of art aficionados, no pouring over magazines or newspaper reviews, and there’s definitely no big ballin’ art plays for likability listed below. These shows made the list because I visited them more than once (that rarely ever happens) or my sensibilities were totally confounded by the creativity. Shows that make that kind of impression can provide a year’s worth of conversational tidbits and a measure to which you might hold all others. Aw, enough with that…these shows rocked my 2014.
It’s fun, fresh, and daring like newly graduated art school minds before they get crushed and compromised. This curator driven show, gets set up in an old schoolhouse during Armory Arts Week in New York. Yes, we know it’s technically an art fair. But the 2014 show, PublicPrivate won us over with installations that we talked up all-year-long.
Kara Walker’s Installation at the Domino Sugar Factory in Brooklyn was a “homage to the unpaid and overworked Artisans who have refined our sweet tastes from the cane fields to the Kitchens of the New World on the Occasion of the demolition of the Domino Sugar Refining Plant.” The exhibit was mind-blowing – from the overwhelmingly beautiful conceptual execution of the sugar-coated sphinx-like woman, to the very unexpected nauseating smell of burnt sugar permeating the hot factory.
Swoon’s intricate wheat-paste portraits normally grace New York buildings, but for Motherlands she went large-scale, telling landscaped stories against a backdrop of dramatically blue washed walls in the Brooklyn Museum rotunda. The star of the show was the massive sculptural tree that nearly kissed the rotunda’s 72 foot high glass domed ceiling.
Finally made it to the Swoon: Submerged Motherlands show. #swoonstreetart #bkm #bkmuseum #paperart A photo posted by @hahamag on
Lynch’s grime aesthetics found solace at Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in Philadelphia (PAFA), where he studied as an advanced painting student in 1967. The exhibit explored Lynch’s hybrid collection of works, displaying a delicate balance from disturbing narratives to richly descriptive lithographs. Unified Field is his world of opposites that he wanders in and out of at will.
Absolutely blown away by seeing such truth in Lynch’s description of the intense depth of richness he achieved in his lithographs. “David Lynch: “Hervé Chandès from the Fondation Cartier brought me over to Idem…I see this incredible place, and I get the opportunity to work there. And this was like a dream! It just opened up this brand-new world of the lithography and the magic of lithography, the magic of the stones.” #pafadavidlynch #davidlynch #theunifiedfield #lithographs #stones #phillyart #whyilovephilly #pafacademy #idem @pafacademy A photo posted by @hahamag on
Interhaven: The Works of Caitlin McCormack
McCormack’s sorted things in shadowboxes lay posed and gracefully still as if they once knew air – their layers of articulated overlapping crocheted beige string bones resembled the things they never were. The show’s curio layout carried a pleasantly haunting tone, but it was the lingering of McCormack’s stored memories seen through these tangible manifestations of contained dreams and nightmares that left me feeling domed under her bell jars.
*thank you to paperclips215 & Paradigm Gallery for the use of their Instagram Photos