Neu Black

No Street Art for Brooklyn

06.22.11   |   Posted in: Art & Design   |   By: Toshi Jones
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While there will be no shortage of graffiti in Brooklyn next Spring. However, it will not be housed in the Brooklyn Museum. Art in the Streets, which is currently on exhibit here in Los Angeles at MOCA was slated to travel to New York in February 2012. Brooklyn Museum Director Arnold L. Lehman noted in a statement yesterday “It is with regret … that the cancellation became necessary due to the current financial climate…” Many speculate fear of an increase in street graffiti as a more pressing concern. Museum officials are not denying these claims and news media have linked up a supposed increase in graffiti here in LA to the opening of the show at MOCA.

LAPD and LA County Sheriff’s department have made statements indicating that the immediate area surrounding MOCA has seen an increase in graffiti since the opening of Art in the Streets. Neu Black did a brief survey of the area and Little Tokyo is pretty graffiti free. That is aside from the work directly on the MOCA building, a set of JR eyes and before it was censored by MOCA, a full wall of coffins by Italian street artist Blu (below.)

It is possible LAPD might be referring to the surge in privately commissioned street art murals popping up around downtown. Which they can do nothing about. If there is anything the MOCA show can take credit for, it is bringing street art to greater prominence and providing an increased understanding of this emerging genre.

Australian Artist Kid Zoom

Dabs & Myla with Craola

Tobias Wong Death Ruled Suicide

06.3.10   |   Posted in: Art & Design   |   By: Toshi Jones
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News spread quickly Monday of the death of design provocateur Tobias Wong. Yesterday, the Manhattan medical examiner’s office released a statement ruling the death a suicide.

Tobias Wong is known for his many conceptual pieces, but is perhaps best know for his “Coke Spoon” series featuring gold plated items which he referred to as “indulgences.” The gold plated McDonald’s and Playboy stir sticks along with the gold plated pen cap were added to the permanent collection at SFMOMA. He challenged our perceptions of rights and ownership when he sniped up Issey Miyake dresses to make computer screen covers or smashed Alvar Aalto Savoy glass vases to release cement cast doorstops.

Tobias Wong reminded us that our hunger for more was at times ridiculous yet he played to our desires. He teased and taunted us with pieces just out of our reach…keeping us wanting more.

Wong is survived by his partner Tim Dubitsky, his mother, his stepfather and his brother.

C. G. Jung’s The Red Book: Sold Out

11.13.09   |   Posted in: Art & Design   |   By: Toshi Jones
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The highly anticipated release of The Red Book of C. G. Jung has propelled the publication to #71 on the Amazon best seller’s list. Not too shabby for a book with a $195 MSRP. The 199 numbered copies of the deluxe edition, hand tooled in red leather like the original, were made available only to members of the Philemon Foundation for a donation of $2,450. Had we known the book would virtually sell out in less than a month, we would have capitalized on the pre-order or October 19th initial offering. Captivated by Red Book fever we combed the net to no avail and were finally relegated to calling individual book stores all over the country in an attempt to snag a first edition copy. We are happy to report it’s in the mail and we just can’t wait.

It’s worth mentioning that the original Red Book may be seen in its first public exhibition at New York’s Rubin Museum of Art until 25 January 2010. Next year it will be on display at the Library of Congress from 17 June to 31 July. To compliment the book release and public viewing the RMA is hosting a choice group of cultural icons for The Red Book Dialogues. Speakers include musicians David Byrne and Billy Corgan, designer Stefan Sagmeister, and novelist Gloria Vanderbilt among others. Guest speakers will be paired on stage with a psychoanalyst and invited to respond to and interpret a folio from Jung’s Red Book as a starting point for a wide ranging conversation.

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Sendak in Soho

10.5.09   |   Posted in: Art & Design, Events   |   By: Toshi Jones
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Each of us has a special place in our hearts for the illustrations of Maurice Sendak. This month is filled with exhibitions of his work in anticipation of the “Where the Wild Things Are” feature film debut on October 16th. The largest and most in depth at The Animazing Gallery in Soho displays over 200 sketches, etchings, and a limited edition bronze sculpture based on his most popular characters. “Sendak in Soho” will be on display until November 8th at The Animazing Gallery 54 Greene St NY, NY 10013.

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Mural by Os Gêmeos – Otavio and Gustavo Pandolfo

08.5.09   |   Posted in: Uncategorized   |   By: A. Salem Jones
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Visitors to Houston Street and the Bowery in Manhattan will be rewarded with a wonderful mural. The piece, painted by brothers Otavio and Gustavo Pandolfo reflects their Brazilian roots. Street illustration is combined with characteristically Brazilian vibrant colors. The two brothers work under the name Os Gêmeos which in Portuguese translates to “the twins.’ Measuring about 15 feet by 50 feet, the mural will be up through next April.


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New Feature – RETNA’s American Revolutionaries

07.6.09   |   Posted in: Art & Design, Events   |   By: Toshi Jones
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Check out our latest feature. Featured Project – RETNA’s American Revolutionaries looks at the latest project by Los Angeles icon RETNA.

The Beautiful Mind of Souther Salazar

05.21.09   |   Posted in: Art & Design, Events   |   By: Toshi Jones
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This weekend Souther Salazar opened his much anticipated solo show at Jonathan Levine Gallery in New York. Entitled “Last Year’s Man,” the exhibition exploded with a menagerie of paintings, sculptures, and mixed media installations in Souther’s signature style. From intricate line drawn empires to utopian cityscapes, Souther has unleashed the inner workings of his imagination and sprinkled in hints of social commentary. Personally I’m constantly enthralled by the detail in each piece finding it difficult to tear myself from the diverging narratives and charming characters. On view until June 16th, “Last Year’s Man” is a must see if in the NY area.

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Playing the Building: An Installation by David Byrne

07.11.08   |   Posted in: Art & Design, Events   |   By: A. Salem Jones
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Creative Time presents Playing the Building, a sound installation in which the infrastructure, the physical plant of the building, is converted into a giant musical instrument. Devices are attached to the building structure — to the metal beams and pillars, the heating pipes, the water pipes — and are used to make these things produce sound. The activations are of three types: wind, vibration, striking. The devices do not produce sound themselves, but they cause the building elements to vibrate, resonate and oscillate so that the building itself becomes a very large musical instrument.

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Takashi Murakami

04.16.08   |   Posted in: Art & Design, Events   |   By: Andrea Tumino
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The insanely inspiring Takashi Murakami continues to keep us in absolute awe and apparently we aren’t the only ones. Murakami’s retrospective at the LA MOCA has been so successful its moving to New York at the Brooklyn Museum, April 5th through July 13th. If you’re in New York and want to catch a glimpse of what’s coming check out our feature on the LA MOCA show. No word yet on whether or not Kanye West will make an appearance at the New York opening but get your venetian blind sunglasses ready.

Frozen Grand Central

03.13.08   |   Posted in: Art & Design, Events   |   By: A. Salem Jones
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-Via Dustbowl