Friday Links: What’ll Happen to the Girl in the Red Dress?

by Whitney Kimball on April 26, 2013 · 2 comments Massive Links

Aimmi Phillips' "Girl in Red Dress With Cat and Dog" (1830-1835) (Screen shot courtesy of the American Folk Art Museum)

  • Are selfies narcissistic? Brian Droitcour thinks not, reasoning that a selfie means sharing oneself; not taking selfies denotes a preciousness about your autonomy. He’d also make a good case for swinging. [culturetwo]
  • It was only a matter of time before someone called out BiennialeOnline’s lofty claim to being “the first exclusively online biennale exhibition of contemporary art.” Today, that falls to artist Oliver Laric. His “An Incomplete Timeline of Online Exhibitions and Biennales,” covers everything from THE THING to, and should be a primer for those who’d like to learn. The work was intended for BiennaleOnline, but has since been withdrawn for limiting format requirements, like, absurdly, not being allowed to include any outgoing URLS.  Rhizome’s artbase (also on the list), now hosts the piece. Get with the times, people! [; Artbase]
  • After a tragic shooting in Illinois on Wednesday, Rita Luark needs money to bury her daughter, her daughter’s grandmother, her two grandchildren, and their father. You can send money to Rita and her surviving six-year-old granddaughter here:

102 South Main, PO Box 258, White Hall, IL 62092
Online: [Facebook]

  • Columbia MFA Thesis Show opens this Sunday at The Fischer Landau Center between 2-5. The show is curated by Fionn Meade. Recommended. [Fischer Landau Center for Art]
  • Jason Foumberg has been busting his butt over at Newcity Art, with sweeping coverage of Chicago’s scene. This week’s installment: Breakout Artists 2013. [Newcity]
  • A seven-foot-tall Greco Roman head made of styrofoam was found by the Marist College crew team in the Hudson River. Officials are dumbfounded. [Newsday]
  • If you’ve been following the latest chapter of Folk Art Museum’s ongoing punishment, this video should make you sad. Collector Ralph Esmerian gives Martha Stewart a tour of the Folk Art Museum, back when the 53rd street building was new, in the mid-2000s. “How does it feel to see all your things here?” Martha asks, to which Ralph replies “Fantastic…they have a fantastic home in which to shine.” MoMA now plans to demolish that building, and Esmerian’s currently serving a 6-year prison sentence for bankruptcy and wire fraud. In order to cover his debts, Sotheby’s will be auctioning off all but 53 of 263 of the works which Esmerian promised to the museum. We hope this doesn’t include “Girl in Red Dress With Cat and Dog” (1830-1835) by folk art icon Aimmi Phillips, of which Esmerian says: “This girl is just terribly, terribly special. I was able to get it after several institutions had passed her up. I thought she was vital in terms of her charm and beauty and innocence.” [Martha Stewart]
  • Hrag Vartanian also interviewed Esmerian back in 2002. Of “Girl in Red Dress,” Esmerian told him:

“When I was told there was an American Folk Art classic coming onto the art market, I couldn’t believe what it could be. AFAM was the third museum in line to be offered the work, but the first two turned it down because of the price. I felt we had no choice and we had to have it because it would give us an institutional sense that we’re here. We paid an enormous price but got something that is truly sensational,” Esmerian says about the painting he purchased in 1984 and immediately transferred to the custody of the Museum. []


Julia Halperin April 26, 2013 at 12:38 pm

Good news! The Esmerian auction won’t include “Girl in the Red Dress,” because it was among the gifts he donated to the museum outright in the early 2000s, rather than offering as a promised gift. (I love that painting too.)

WhitneyKimball April 26, 2013 at 12:52 pm

Oh yay! Thanks Julia!

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