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donald trump

The 10 Weirdest AFC Stories of 2016

by Michael Anthony Farley on December 30, 2016
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Equal parts surreal and horrifying, 2016 was basically an Hieronymus Bosch painting come to life. Given how apocalyptic and strange every headline from the mainstream news media has been this past year, it’s easy to overlook all the weird shit that went down in the art world.

But this year was chock-full of crazy art world stories, often that intersected with politics. (Remember a few weeks ago, when Madonna charged Art Basel visitors thousands of dollars to watch her grind on a chair while dressed as a clown, covering Britney Spears’ “Toxic” in front of a giant projection of Donald Trump?) It’s hard to even pick a “top 10”, but here’s our best effort to round-up the weirdest art stories we reported on in 2016:

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Is Our Best Hope for the NEA Gone Now That Sylvester Stallone Says He Would Decline an Arts Role?

by Paddy Johnson on December 19, 2016
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Last Thursday rumors began to fly that professional actor Sylvester Stallone would be asked to head the National Endowment for the Arts. He has no experience in government, but in 2009 he made a splash at Art Basel Miami when his amateurish paintings were made available for sale. As of last night, he declined any position that might be offered at the NEA, saying he’d much rather play a role in helping military veterans “find gainful employment, suitable housing and financial assistance these heroes respectfully deserve.”

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This Week’s Must-See Art Events: Nightmares Before Christmas

by Michael Anthony Farley on December 12, 2016
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This week there’s not a lot of art stuff happening beyond holiday parties and craft fairs. One could say NYC’s taken an unexpectedly Middle-American turn in that regard, were it not for how morbid so much of the week’s happenings are. Tuesday night, scholars Sam Tanenhaus and Richard Wolin perform a post-election autopsy on the American Republic and speculate about its afterlife (hint: It’s not looking good) at CUNY. For a slightly less depressing evening, head to Ubu Gallery where German artist Heide Hatry is opening a new series of drawings made with the ashes of human remains. If that’s not enough mortuary holiday cheer for you, Con Artist Collective is throwing a fake memorial art show for the comedian Bill Murray (one of the few national treasures that hasn’t died in 2016). Thursday night we’re looking forward to a subversive holiday group show at Kate Werble Gallery, and a six-hour night of discussions about Art After Trump at Housing Works.

Friday night, things get a little less bleak city-wide. P! and Beverly’s are hosting events for a Bard CSS project that sprawls across Chinatown and continues with satellite events all weekend. At Brooklyn’s Orgy Park, a group show invites painters to make something collaborative, and in Queens, MoMA PS1 is throwing a holiday party for artists that looks totally bonkers. Have some spiked hot chocolate. After a week of thinking about Trump and death, you’re going to need it.

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Reading Félix González-Torres in Times of Fascism

by Michael Anthony Farley on November 18, 2016
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Félix González-Torres’ nuanced, thoughtful observations on sociopolitical conflict, the Right Wing agenda, and the Left’s dysfunctions are so singularly true and poignant that it’s physically painful to know he’s no longer with us.

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