Archives for category: art

An exhibition called “The Sum of Their Parts” is running at the Shore Institute of the Contemporary Arts, in Asbury Park, through February 24, 2012.

Art History is full of composite creatures – the Chimera, the Sphinx, the Griffins, Pan, the Minotaur, the Mermaid, Pegasus, Medusa, the Satyr, the Centaur, — the list goes on and on. The idea of these creatures from mythology and fantasy has rapidly become more plausible with advancements in genetic engineering. This show investigates how artists today interpret and address the idea of creatures that are the sum of some quite different parts.

Artists included in this show are Jean Pierre Arboleda, Kate Clark, Katie Hoffman, Angie Mason, Inna Rasumova, Jack Thompson, and Kelly Vetter.

A recent article about SICA in The New York Times:

SICA’s website:


These days, even the National Endowment for the Arts is getting into the job-creation business. Last month it started a $23.5 million effort to revitalize blighted urban neighborhoods, including money for public arts projects in St. Paul, museum renovations in Detroit and artists’ housing in Harlem.

The idea that art can be an economic engine is hardly new, and a walk through SoHo, Venice Beach or Chicago’s Pilsen neighborhood shows it can work. The N.E.A.’s promotional material makes clear that its goal is to create new SoHo’s in hard-hit cities across the country. But contrary to the N.E.A.’s good intentions, it takes more than grants and tax breaks to make the arts thrive. Too often, art-driven revitalization efforts overlook the mercurial nature of art itself.

Take the now-canonical revitalizations of New York’s SoHo and Chelsea districts. By the 1960s, both areas had an abundance of abandoned light-manufacturing buildings — perfect breeding grounds, in retrospect, for artists.

But it took something else, too. Paula Cooper, who opened her first SoHo gallery in 1968, could have opened anywhere; deindustrialization had emptied large parts of the city. And when the dealers Larry Gagosian and Barbara Gladstone, as well as Ms. Cooper, opened in Chelsea in the mid-’80s and ’90s, it was not because SoHo’s rents were too high, as the conventional wisdom said.

What drove them was the need for even bigger spaces to fit the even bigger aesthetics of artists of the moment like Richard Serra and Jasper Johns. Mr. Serra is known for his freestanding steel sculptures, some 14 feet tall; Mr. Johns’s enormous canvases require high walls. “If you want to show big work, you need big open doors … and concrete floors,” Ms. Gladstone told me.

SoHo and Chelsea were full of such large, lofty spaces; the East Village, among other, similarly cheap neighborhoods, was not. SoHo and Chelsea offered another advantage. Studying historical zoning codes, my colleague Richard Green and I found that unlike heavy manufacturing, which was mostly pushed to the city’s fringes, the light-manufacturing buildings that dominated these neighborhoods were adjacent to conventional residential neighborhoods, with coffee shops, restaurants and other amenities.

By 1971, when the city rezoned SoHo buildings for artists’ work-live spaces, it was merely catching up to a phenomenon well under way. The rezoning also allowed commercial activity on the buildings’ first floors, opening the way for more galleries and restaurants, adding momentum to the neighborhood’s already robust revitalization.

But art’s physical characteristics are just one factor in shaping where it takes root; the social, political and economic context matters, too.

Take the emergence of the arts district in London’s East End in the late 1980s. In many ways, the area fit the SoHo model: cheap, flexible spaces that were close to urban amenities. But it didn’t really take off until 1988, at the height of anti-Thatcherism, when the artist Damien Hirst opened an exhibition featuring a slate of politically charged artists. Soon labeled the Young British Artists, or Y.B.A.’s, they yanked British art into the center of the contemporary art world.

The radical anti-establishment character of Y.B.A.’s art seemed to grow with the rise of Tony Blair and his New Labor in the 1990s, culminating in the 1997 exhibition “Sensation.” Such works as Mr. Hirst’s infamous stuffed shark floating in formaldehyde and Tracey Emin’s tent “Everyone I Have Ever Slept With” replaced stodgy historical pastoral landscapes as representative of British art.

An explosion of interest in their work had a transformative effect on the East End, with galleries and performance spaces paving the way for trendy apartments, restaurants and shops. None of this was planned, nor could it have been.

The evolution of these districts shows that using art as a development tool is like working with quicksilver: it’s hard to know which path it might take, and a tough proposition when dealing with taxpayers’ money and foundation grants.

Which is not to say that there’s no place for programs like the N.E.A.’s. But it does counsel circumspection. These examples demonstrate that specific cultural circumstances dictate art’s role as a change agent. Instead of a shotgun approach that assumes every post-industrial zone or blighted district can, with a few million dollars in subsidies, become the next SoHo, we should follow the lead of the metaphorical college that puts down sidewalks only after the students have hewn their own paths.

Groups like the N.E.A. should first identify where artists are doing promising work, and determine whether public resources might help catalyze an artistic community. There’s nothing wrong with looking to art as a way to raise a city’s economic development. But before we go tossing money at anyone with a paintbrush or an art space, we have to understand the complex ways artistic communities shape our cities’ fortunes.

– By Elizabeth Currid-Halkett; an assistant professor of urban planning at the University of Southern California and the author of “The Warhol Economy: How Fashion, Art and Music Drive New York City.”

(this article originally appeared in the New York Times, October 15, 2011)

Dahlia Elsayed’s solo show Possibles, Probables will have a run at Monmouth University’s Icehouse Gallery, October 24- November 23, 2011. She will give an Artist Talk on Thursday, November 3rd at 4:30pm, followed by an opening reception.

Check out more of her wonderful work at:

Dahlia Elsayed (b. 1969) combines text and imagery to create visually narrative paintings that document internal and external geographies. Her work, influenced by conceptual art, comics, and landscape painting, is informed by autobiography and environment, to create illustrated documents of place and experience.

Her paintings, prints and artist books have been shown at galleries and art institutions throughout the United States and internationally, including exhibitions at the 12th Cairo Biennale, BravinLee Programs, Clementine Gallery and the Jersey City Museum. Her work is in the public collections of the US Department of State, Johnson & Johnson Corporation, The Jersey City Museum, Zimmerli Art Museum, Hunterdon Museum of Art, Noyes Museum of Art, Montclair Art Museum, Newark Public Library, New Jersey State Museum, and Morris Museum. A large number of her works were commissioned for the permanent collection of the Ritz Carlton Hotel in New York. Dahlia has received awards from the Edward Albee Foundation, Visual Studies Workshop, The Newark Museum, ArtsLink, The Dodge Foundation, Women’s Studio Workshop, Headlands Center for the Arts,The NJ State Council on the Arts and most recently a grant from The Joan Mitchell Foundation.
She received her MFA from Columbia University, and lives and works in New Jersey.

Ralph Gibson: Artist’s Lecture and Image Presentation

Date: Tuesday, October 4, 2011, at 8pm
Venue: Cafe Volan, 510 Bangs Avenue, Asbury Park, NJ 07712
Admission: $10 All admissions at the door, cash only. No advance sales or reservations.


Ralph Gibson studied photography while in the U.S. Navy and then at the San Francisco Art Institute. He began his professional career as an assistant to Dorothea Lange and went on to work with Robert Frank on two films. Gibson has maintained a lifelong fascination with books and book-making. Since the appearance of “The Somnambulist” in 1970, his work has been steadily impelled towards the printed page. To date, he has produced over 40 monographs, his most current projects being “State of the Axe” which was published by Yale University Press in Fall of 2008 and “Nude” by Taschen, 2009. His photographs are included in over 150 museum collections around the world, including the The Whitney Museum of American Art and the Museum of Modern Art, New York, and have appeared in hundreds of exhibitions.



Ralph Gibson: “I didn’t choose photography. Photography chose me.” Gibson is member of LM100 and photographed the portraits of his fellow members. Le Méridien’s experiences are defined and enriched by a group of cultural innovators and artists called Le Méridien 100. The group comprises a global array of visionaries, from painters to photographers, musicians to designers, chefs to architects. In this short film Gibson discusses his personal history and his approach to making photographs.


Ralph Gibson has worked exclusively with the Leica for almost 50 years and here is an exclusive interview for Leica Camera.

A mesmerizing performance by guitarist Nels Cline and painter Norton Wisdom, both masters of their medium. Armed with his guitar and effects, Cline creates lush soundscapes brought about by Wisdom’s brush-stroke spontaneity. Wisdom in turn follows Cline’s auditory twists creating and recreating the same canvas.

A Windows Have Eyes/Michael Lucio Sternbach production.

A beautiful piece of psychedelic video art by our friend Puddin Aylward, featuring a score by the Asbury Park-based ensemble American Cloud Songs.
More of Pud’s work can be found on his blog.
And check out American Could Song’s MySpace page.

A short by our friend Douglas Parent. . . an official selection at last year’s New York Surf Film Festival.



** The New York Surf Film Festival strives every year to curate an exhibition of the highest quality surf films from around the world.  We create an annual pilgrimage that gives the surfing community and general public a spotlight in the city to celebrate the filmmaking craft,  honor the heritage, and learn about the new movements within and surrounding the surf lifestyle.  We connect  filmmakers, athletes, friends and family together to enjoy the beauty and stories that are captured on camera.