From the category archives:

Podcast

Institutional failure, Trump’s Agenda, and Meme-Driven Conservative Movements: A Talk with Nayland Blake

by Paddy Johnson and William Powhida on June 29, 2020
Boogaloo Boys

Boogaloo Boys show off posters supporting Trump at a demonstration

Artist Nayland Blake joins the podcast to discuss the murder of George Floyd at the hands of a white police officer, mass protests, and the resurgence of COVID as the backdrop for public art and how museums are addressing diversity.  Spearheaded in large part by Blake, we discuss all of these issues  through the lens of what people need and how art makers, art workers and arts institutions answer that need.

We started the conversation with Blake’s recent twitter thread on art criticism.

“Art criticism is the activity of thinking with and through art objects,” they wrote. “If you constantly reach for the same few objects to think with, you stagnate as a critic and simply reinforce your own bias.”

Other relevant links mentioned in the show:

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Revolution for the Family: Heather Bhandari and Nikki Columbus on Pandemic Parenting, Art, and Activism

by Paddy Johnson and William Powhida on May 19, 2020
The Abrons Art Center has paid all their staff and performers during the shutdown.

The Abrons Art Center has paid all their staff and performers during the shutdown.

This week on Explain Me, co-hosts William Powhida and Paddy Johnson talk to arts organizers and activists Heather Bhandari and Nikki Columbus about the challenges for mothers during the pandemic, and the challenges for arts workers seeking to make changes to a system that no longer works for them. 

Of the family-focused topics discussed we take on pandemic screen time for kids (Bhandari describes DinoTrux as terrible for kids, but a necessary evil), what to do if your toddler licks a bodega door, and disrupted schedules that make it impossible to find or look for work and require long and often unusual hours. 

On the subject of organizing we discuss several projects spearheaded by Bhandari and Columbus respectively designed to pave actionable paths for artists. 

Finally we discuss Frieze New York, and contrast their dubious charity efforts during the fair to the more collective NADA art fair model that works towards a sustainable model for everyone. Show links below. 

The Art World Conference 

Forward Union 

Art/Work, Heather Bhandari and Jonathan Melber 

N+1, Free Your Mind, by Claire Bishop and Nikki Columbus

Art+Work+Place, Emergency Session I, Veralist Center

Art+Work+Place, Emergency Session II, Veralist Center

Museum transparency Newsletter (Read about all the layoffs and other bad news that’s happening in the museum world right now—of which there is a ton.)

The Model Model: Ethical Actions by Arts Organizations in the time of COVID-19 (Read about the good news and exemplary work by arts organizations.) 

Obama Commencement Speech

#graduatetogether2020 (twitter hashtag) 

Frieze Art Fair (May 8-15th) 

NADA Fair (May 20-June 21)

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Museum Board Members Fail Moral Challenges, Museum Exhibitions Exceed Expectations

by Paddy Johnson on December 4, 2018
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Donna DeSalvo assembles some of Andy Warhol’s greatest work for his retrospective at the Whitney Museum, while revelations that Whitney Vice Chair Warren B. Kanders owns a company that sells tear gas used at the border shake museum staff. Soul of a Nation at the Brooklyn Museum looks at the history of political activism, while Jack Waters offers a mix of bag of awe inspiring abject art paired with groan inspiring sculptures and paintings. Jack Whitten at the Metropolitan Museum dazzles, Art and Conspiracy flops, and Amazon is going to drive Queens residents out of their homes.

Listen ——>

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Explain Me: The Case for Taxing The Hell Out of Peter Brant

by Paddy Johnson on July 16, 2018
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In this episode of Explain Me William Powhida and Paddy Johnson discuss the horrific business practices of Peter Brant and Interview Magazine, a fundraising campaign at University of North Carolina so misguided that firing is in order, and the latest headscratching Creative Time project. To help us discuss all of this, and how the new tax code will affect artists accountant and painter Hannah Cole joins us.

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Explain Me, Part II: Doug Aitken’s New Era, Worst Show of 2018

by Paddy Johnson on June 7, 2018
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In Part II of Explain Me, William Powhida and I discuss the difference between relational aesthetics and social practice, the whims of the auction market and the perilous affect it can have on artist careers, and Doug Aitken’s train wreck of a show at 303 Gallery along with a handful of truly remarkable shows. Those shows listed after the jump.

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Explain Me: Bags of Cash Help New Galleries

by Paddy Johnson on June 6, 2018
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In this episode we discuss how the Frieze Art Fair’s failing air conditioning units won’t help global warming, sales strategies for emerging artists, and galleries that have come and gone. Look to Part II where we discuss the difference between social practice and relational aesthetics and discuss the Doug Aitken show at 303.

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Explain Me: The New Museum Triennial—Two Critics Perform Their Own Acts of Sabotage

by Paddy Johnson on April 18, 2018
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In this episode of Explain Me, Paddy Johnson and William Powhida discuss the New Museum Triennial. Both Johnson and Powhida agree this show has more of its fair share of bad art but only Powhida sees this as a dealbreaker. Debate ensues. The ad in which Pepsi and model Kendall Jenner create world peace gets a mention.

Thanks to Explain Me sponsor, Superfine

Laura Ouramonde

Lydia Ourahmane, “Finitude, 2018, Courtesy of the Artist

Chemu Ng’ok Image via: Hyperallergic

Chemu Ng’ok Image via: Hyperallergic

 

Anupam Roy installation view

Anupam Roy installation view

Gresham Tapiwa Nyaude, The New Zimbabwe (2018) at "2018 Triennial: Songs

Gresham Tapiwa Nyaude, The New Zimbabwe (2018) at “2018 Triennial: Songs

 

Manolis D. Lemos, dusk and dawn look just the same (riot tourism), 2017 (still). Courtesy of the artist and CAN Christina Androulidaki Gallery, Athens

Manolis D. Lemos, dusk and dawn look just the same (riot tourism), 2017 (still). Courtesy of the artist and CAN Christina Androulidaki Gallery, Athens

Haroon Gunn-Salie “Senzenina” (2018), an installation by the South African artist Haroon Gunn- Salie, memorializes the 2012 police massacre of striking miners in his homeland.

Haroon Gunn-Salie “Senzenina” (2018), an installation by the South African artist Haroon Gunn- Salie, memorializes the 2012 police massacre of striking miners in his homeland.

 

Hardeep Pandhal, Pool Party Pilot Episode, 2018, 4K animation, color, sound; 8:10 min. Hardeep Pandhal.

Hardeep Pandhal, Pool Party Pilot Episode, 2018, 4K animation, color, sound; 8:10 min. Hardeep Pandhal.

 

Tomm El-Saieh

Tomm El-Saieh

 

Tiril Hasselknippe

Tiril Hasselknippe, installation view

PRONOUNCIATION GUIDE

Gary Carrion-Murayari

** Carry-on Mur-uh-yar-ee

Tomm El-Saieh

** El-say

Lydia Ourahmane

** Oura-ha-mane

Chemu Ng’ok

** Chem-oo Nuh-gok

Gresham Tapiwa Nyaude

** Tap-ee-wa Naw-u-deh

Manolis D. Lemos

** Man-o-lis Lem-os

Tiril Hasselknippe

** Tir-ill Has-ul-nip

Hardeep Pandhal

** Pand-al

Haroon Gunn-Salie ** Sal-ley

Anupam Roy

** A-new-pam

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Explain Me: The Stink of Met Admission Hikes Endures

by Paddy Johnson on February 21, 2018
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Back in January, William Powhida and I recorded an episode of Explain Me on the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s new admission policy. Earlier that month, the museum known for housing some of the world’s greatest treasures announced its admission price would no longer remain “pay-as-you-wish”. As of March 1st, their suggested admission, $25 will become mandatory for anyone living outside of New York State. Children under 12 get in for free.

Given that there’s less than two weeks until this policy change goes into affect, we thought it might be a good time to release our discussion and revisit the debate.

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Explain Me: What Curators Really Think—A Cringe Worthy Report

by Paddy Johnson on December 29, 2017
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On this episode of Explain Me we discuss a disastrous curator conference at SVA titled “Curatorial Activism and the Politics of Shock”, the Miami art fairs, and three shows— “Talon Rouge: Six Mexican Artists Revisit José Juan Tablada and His New York Circle” at PROXYCO, “Johnny Abrahams: Threnody” at The Hole and “Molly Zuckerman-Hartung: Learning Artist” and “Maryam Hoseini Of Strangers and Parrots” at Rachel Uffner.

Links and show images mentioned in the discussion below:

CAFKA
TJ Clark – Farewell to an idea
PROXYCO
“Johnny Abrahams: Threnody” at The Hole
“Molly Zuckerman-Hartung: Learning Artist” and “Maryam Hoseini Of Strangers and Parrots” at Rachel Uffner

Installation view, Johnny Abrahams “Threnody"

Installation view, Johnny Abrahams “Threnody”

Installation view, Maryam Hoseini, Of Strangers and Parrots, Rachel Uffner Gallery

Installation view, Maryam Hoseini, Of Strangers and Parrots, Rachel Uffner Gallery

 Installation view, Molly Zuckerman-Hartung, Learning Artist, Rachel Uffner Gallery


Installation view, Molly Zuckerman-Hartung, Learning Artist, Rachel Uffner Gallery

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Gentrification, Income Inequality and Donald Trump Baby Turds

by Paddy Johnson on November 24, 2017
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In this episode of Explain Me William Powhida and Paddy Johnson talk about the 450 million dollar Leonardo Da Vinci of disputed authenticity and the Boyle Heights activists who follow artist Laura Owen’s from L.A. to New York to protest her non-profit 365 Mission while she visited The Whitney. Activists believe the presence of her gallery will lead to displacement. Additionally, we discuss the exhibitions listed below.

Listen to us on iTunes and Stitcher

Didier Williams

Didier Williams

Tiger Strikes Asteroid: Didier William, “We Will Win“. Review: A Haitian Artist’s Mesmerizing Eyes

Paddy Johnson failing to hula hoop and draw at the same time.

Paddy Johnson failing to hula hoop and draw at the same time.

The Museum of Human Achievement (in Austin TX)

Nicholas Cueva at Five Miles

Nicholas Cueva at Five Miles

Five Miles: Nicholas Cueva, “The People Games Play

Tracing Trajectories at Trestle Gallery - Installation view.

Tracing Trajectories at Trestle Gallery – Installation view.

Trestle Projects: Tracing Trajectories/Selections from the Hoggard/Wagner Collection 

From “Anteroom”, by Anita Thacher, 1982, 35mm color slide projection, brass doorknob and plate, sound, 108 x 144 x 3 inches – Image courtesy of the artist and Microscope Gallery

From “Anteroom”, by Anita Thacher, 1982, 35mm color slide projection, brass doorknob and plate, sound, 108 x 144 x 3 inches – Image courtesy of the artist and Microscope Gallery

Microscope Gallery: Anita Thacher, “Anteroom”

Rachel Rossin, Installation view at Signal Gallery

Rachel Rossin, Installation view at Signal Gallery

Rachel Rossin Aquarium detail

Rachel Rossin Aquarium detail

Signal Gallery: Rachel Rossin, “Peak Performance”

Installation view at Present Company

Installation view at Present Company

Myeongsoo Kim at Present Company

Myeongsoo Kim at Present Company

Present Company: Myeongsoo Kim and Jessie Rose Vala, “Dusk to Dust” 

Future Retrieval at Denny Gallery, Installation view

Future Retrieval at Denny Gallery, Installation view

Denny Gallery: Future Retrieval, Permanent Spectacle

Derek Eller Gallery: Whiting Tennis

Whiting Tennis, The Vegetarian

Whiting Tennis, The Vegetarian, at Derek Eller

Whiting Tennis at Derek Eller, Installation view

Whiting Tennis at Derek Eller, Installation view

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