emilie halpern              

Dec 15, 2008

emilie halpern – solar kiss (2001)

i first came across the work of emilie halpern when this image, solar kiss, appeared on an issue of showpaper a few months ago.  i was really, really struck by it so i sent out some emails and, thanks to two very kind  people, i now have one to hang on my wall.
emilie halpern – touching rainbow (2007)
i became even more interested in her work when i saw this image, touching rainbow, in the absolutely brilliant asdf exhibition, for a brief time only at a location near you.
lots of great stuff to look through at her website.
i encourage you to enjoy, please.

posted by matt olson

nic the intern presents white out – oy house              

Dec 11, 2008

white out is an ongoing series of posts drawn from a presentation that our intern nicolas allinder gave about his research into recent modern japanese architecture.

oy house is a blank canvas which allows its surroundings and circumstances to paint its presence. 
light interacts with the structure almost like it’s a material, creating it’s own constantly evolving logic and momentum.
despite the stark modern poetry of the oy house, there are subtle elements that call to mind the origins of asian architecture. it’s really interesting how well the traditional paper covered, sliding lattice walls fit into the fairly severe minimalist surroundings. 
the seamless marriage of timeless japanese architectural elements with contemporary minimal design is most definitely one of the most impressive parts.

fk – ao, the architects behind the oy house, managed to create a place full of life without forcing it, they allowed the natural elements decorate.


very present and yet, almost silent.  whatever it is, i’m enthralled with it all. 

more here at katsuyuki fujimoto and arcprospect pics by Akiyoshi Fukuzawa.

please, enjoy.

posted by nicolas allinder (the intern!)

untitled (from the lizards point) – david horvitz              

Dec 9, 2008

yesterdays post about a warhol polaroid* reminded me i still hadn’t written about a polaroid i just acquired. it’s part of a piece called untitled (from the lizards point) by one of my favorite artists david horvitz.  the picture was taken from the shore looking out to sea at the southern most point in england.  here’s a description of what he did written on the back of the envelope.
* on a vaguely related note, the show line up, strip down, fade out: polaroid photographs by andy warhol, grant worth and david horvitz just came down recently.
besides the polaroid, there was a text piece along with two other images.  one is an old picture of a women found in a box in berlin and the other, taken from an old book, is of the ocean off the southern most point in africa.  the envelope feels like an important part too as, with a lot of david’s work, he explores traveling, connections, beginnings, endings and different kinds of distances (in both time and miles) and what they mean.
i absolutely love it. 
i’ve been trying for awhile now to buy everything i can by david horvitz…                       and i can’t imagine i’ll stop.
please, enjoy.

posted by matt olson

andy warhol + polaroids + amie valentine              

Dec 8, 2008

andy warhol – bananas (1978)
once before, i wrote of my friend amie valentine here and her email dispatches that arrive several times a month from all over the world.  they’re always titled lesson ### and read a bit like short stories even though they’re all true. her writing is often brilliant and outrageous (follow the link up there) and my wife and i look forward to the epic ones like this:
Lesson No. 321
It is difficult, in a mentally annotated, self-observed life, to pinpoint when, exactly, you decided you had to have (house downpayment fund be damned) a Warhol.

When did it REALLY happen?

When it happened, or when you got the mailer for the exhibit, two weeks prior, and carefully took the kitchen scissors to it, cutting out your favorite pieces from the show and taping them to a separate piece of paper you’ve been carrying in your purse ever since. 

There’s nothing wrong with flirting, right? And what if you really fell in love with one? But you’d have to meet them in person first before your feelings got carried away. 

Yesterday. Brisk winter day with dry pavement. Perfect day for a walk in New York, with a few free hours after a photo shoot and before a meeting back at the office.

You go to the gallery. It’s your favorite: Paul Kasmin Gallery. It represents James Nares and Elliott Puckette, among others. (Long time fan of Puckette, you gasped audibly in a theatre once when you saw one of her paintings as set dressing in a scene of The Royal Tenenbaums. It wasn’t a particularly dramatic part in the movie and a few heads turned in your direction, like “What’s YOUR problem?”) But the Warhols aren’t up. “They’re in our annex location, around the corner.” So you go. A tiny space. With 70 framed polaroids on the wall. 

You didn’t know this: Warhol took polaroids as studies, before he made his paintings. And these thoughts half formed are, for you, so much better. The process more interesting than the final product. Like the Richard Prince study you bought many years ago, a partial birth that gestated into his “joke painting” series. The Prince study is just a penciled one liner on a piece of paper maybe 7″ x 10.” But it became a 7′ x 10′ painting you saw at the Guggenheim last year, for the first time. And it felt, a little, like meeting your mother.

There’s a polaroid of soup cans and Brillo boxes.

Polaroids of Halston shoes. (You email Nicole Miller and tell her she should buy one. She, after all, is rich enough to have a private chef for her showroom.)

A cleaver. That one’s pretty cool. A gun. Poinsettias. Eggs.  

(You call Chris Craymer before he boards a flight to Paris. “You’ve got to see these when you get back.”)

And so the courtship begins. “Is this show from a private collection or are these for sale?”

“They’re from the foundation. Most are still available.” 

You shift the weight in your hips and sway a little. The woozy dance of someone soon to be separated from their bank balance. Your voice goes up an octave. “Really?”

“What about this one? Is that available? And this one? Hmmm?” The crosses are sold. 

But you suspect they’re out of your league anyway. They’d HAVE to be, they’re WARHOLS. It’s all just cock tease until you build up the courage to ask “What is, um, the price range?” 

“They’re all $$,$$$.”

Voice up another octave. “Reeeeeeally?”

Now you breathe again. You have visions of your hard won money market balance. And your buy-this-against-all-odds-logic begins. The internet has kept you up at night for months with stories about the devaluation of the dollar. And Warhol is the next best thing to gold bullion. Maybe better. $$,$$$ is doable. It will set you back on the house thing a bit, but a girl’s got to eat, and there’s a polaroid of bananas on the wall making you drool.

“And this one…has IT sold?”

“Let’s see…that one…is available.”

Then you retract. Maybe that’s not the one. You go back to each wall and look at your favorites again. Since each is the same price, you weigh other factors. Which would look best with your other art? (Bad train of thought…that’s decorating, not collecting.) Which is most iconically Warhol and thus a better investment? Which has the most personal resonance (the Brillo box, since you’re in advertising…the Halston shoes, since you work with fashion clients…the “human heart” – actually a sheep’s heart – since you are mortal…)?

It’s too hot in the gallery. You’re feeling faint and losing focus. A woman named Kara has been summoned from across the street in the main gallery to tell you more about the provenance of the final contenders. She says Warhol did polaroids for his celebrity portraits as well, and the gallery has some of those at Art Basel right now.

“I think I’ve made up my mind. It has to be THIS one. How could it NOT be?”

You ask if they can send it to Pennsylvania, where your brother lives. You’ll save $,$$$ in sales tax right there. You can pick it up when the show’s down in January – AND visit your brother. How perfect is that? This was clearly meant to be.

You look again at the inert objects frozen in their emulsion. That odd ‘roid coloration that comes off somewhat sickly. And droll.

Droll or not, the polaroid’s so cute for such a heavyweight in the art world. Four by three and a quarter inches. A pocket Warhol.

The one you’ve fallen in love with is food….a phallic symbol…and the Velvet Underground…all in one. 

It’s from 1978.

And it’s mine.

unbelievable huh?  congratulations ms. valentine. 

such perfect timing too as i’m currently reading andy’s autobiography popism: the warhol 60s,  and i can’t help but thinking my pal amie v. would’ve fit perfectly into the factory scene around 1965 had she been born to a different time.

more proof i think, that it’s going to be a great winter.

posted by matt olson

listen the snow is falling              

Dec 6, 2008

 front yard (2003) – tema stauffer

if you live or find yourself in milwaukee in the next few weeks, my friend tema stauffer has work in this show, big big bangs / small small bucks at the dean jenson gallery.  both the photographs she has in the show are gorgeous, quiet and still.  the above image was taken in a place i’ve stood and has particularily haunted content for me. 

both are favorites

chk the deets on her blog palmaire. and while you’re there, check out the amazing portraits of boys she meets on the street in a small town upstate new york and the accomanying text pieces she writes.  they are fantastic.  they’ll be in a show later this winter at danial clooney fine art gallery in new york.  i hope to make it out to see them in person.  i’ll keep you posted.

tree (2003) – tema stauffer
these photographs of her’s could’ve been taken here in mpls this weekend…

the following photographs of mine were.

 when we returned home, we heard from a friend who walked into paul kasmin gallery and ended up buying a warhol polaroid that is in a show there.  totally unreal. 

more on that story later though.

something tells me it’s going to be a great winter.

posted by matt olson


Dec 2, 2008

i can hardly wait for the new issue of junkjet to arrive from the nl.  do not miss.
even if you don’t plan on buying an issue, go to their website, it feels like a bit like this… but now.

posted by matt olson

junya ishigami              

Dec 2, 2008

Junya Ishigami seems bent on contradicting your senses. His “Paper Chair” exhibit, on display last spring for Canon’s “NEOREAL” exhibition during Salone Del Mobile in Milan 2008, immediately evokes a fragile presence.

Slowly Junya Ishigami’s work challenges perception and counters intuition. They are functional despite their gaunt appearance.

The paper thin chairs are both quiet and yet filled with life; like being in a room full of whispering voices. And yet you wouldn’t believe it at first glance.

via: japanese design
please, enjoy

posted by nicolas allinder (the intern!)

how a balloon becomes a mixtape              

Dec 2, 2008

i was reminded of a beautiful series of balloon photos my business partner mike brady took recently by this post at one of my favorite new blogs i heart photograph.  i’ve been looking for a reason to post them so…
and i also discovered the video below which seems like a perfect visual representation of what blogging and my internet life is like for me.  i’ve had friends who aren’t living a web 2.0 kinda life struggle to understand why anyone would want to check hundreds of sites a week, spend hours curating things for ones own blog, push it out into the world… and then repeat that on and on and on…  i have used the “idea/thought as pinball” metaphor to describe what it feels like and why it’s such a perfect thing for a mind like mine but, that always seemed a little too erratic a description.  it’s more like this video, wandering from one reality on to the next and wondering what impact each little piece of culture i ingest might eventually have on …
william lamson – emerge

the video made me think of a couple other things too.

a. william lamson (above) currently has a show up at franklin art works here in mpls.  i’m definitely going to see it.
b. i started wondering what his video might be like with music, searched the rolu music collection for songs 2:07 long, turns out, the vid is better without music but… c’mon, what an amazing, odd and unlikely mixtape:
rolu mxtp 2 mnts 7 scnds long or songs not meant for emerge
  1. winner’s blues – sonic youth
  2. atmospheric conditions – beck w/ calvin johnson
  3. podina – mf doom
  4. after hours – velvet underground
  5. meaningless – the magnetic fields
  6. was i?  are you? – barr
  7. gallop – abe vigoda
  8. when we fall – grouper
  9. interlude – mountains
  10. two brown finches – the dirty projectors
  11. ich bin der stricherjunge – stereo total
  12. room 13 – black flag
  13. rettic ac – autechre
  14. oh deed i do – donovan
  15. yellow flowers – the owls
  16. i’ve just seen a face – the beatles
  17. come wind come rain – vashti bunyan
  18. swimming pools – thao ngyuen & the get down stay down
  19. they live by night – the make-up
  20. dactylo rock (pop tarts) – stereo total
  21. out – liquid liquid
  22. wizard’s sleeve – yo la tengo
  23. benzoin gum – mf doom
  24. eleusis – psychic tv
  25. headless horseman part 2 – mount eerie
  26. recorder grot – pavement
  27. the world according to nouns – minutemen
  28. yesterday – the beatles
  29. katrina and the k-hole – lifter puller
  30. leo are you still jumping out of windows in expensive clothes – my little airport
  31. new walk – liquid liquid
  32. do you know (transition) – madlib
download (or just listen to) the rolu mxtp: 2 mnts 7 scnds
so that’s how a balloon became a mixtape.
please, enjoy.

posted by matt olson