Victorians of the Desert
13/03/2013 § 5 Comments
Photographer Jim Naughten‘s amazing portraits of the Herero people of Namibia are currently on display at Margaret Street Gallery in London, as part of an exhibit called “Conflict and Costume,” which you definitely should not miss, should you be in the area. It looks to be an exceptionally thought-provoking examination of the intersection of colonialism, culture, tradition, fashion and identity. The beautiful portraits, starkly posed against the barren Namibian desert, closely focus on the tribe’s unique costume — Victorian era dresses for the women, German paramilitary uniforms for the men. Adopted from their colonizers, and slowly personalized with ethnic textiles and the “cow horn” headdresses you see on the women (the Herero people are pastoralists and place high value on their livestock), the Herero tribe honors their warrior ancestors by continuing this sartorial tradition to present day.
Luckily, for those of us unable to make it to London,
you can purchase Naughten’s book here.
Jim Naughten: Conflict and Costume
Runs through April 13, 2013
Margaret Street Gallery
63 Margaret Street
**UPDATE** I’ve just been alerted that there is a simultaneous NYC Naughten exhibit at the Klompching Gallery in Brooklyn, running through May 4, 2013! In fact, the opening reception is tomorrow night (Thursday, March 14, 6 to 8pm)! Considering that the price for me to view these portraits just dropped from a transatlantic flight to subway fare, there’s no chance I’ll be missing them!
Jim Naughten: Conflict and Costume
111 Front Street, Suite 206
On The Docket: Ezra Stoller at the Yossi Milo Gallery
30/01/2013 § Leave a comment
TWA Terminal at Idlewild (now JFK) Airport, Eero Saarinen, New York, NY, 1962
Recently opened and simultaneously placed on the docket, the Yossi Milo Gallery in Chelsea is currently showing a collection of photographs taken by Ezra Stoller (American, 1915 – 2004), one of the most influential photographers of modern architecture. Entitled “Beyond Architecture,” the exhibit highlights the photographer’s range by juxtaposing Stoller’s rarely-seen images of industry and transportation alongside his well-known architectural photography. Initially I most looked forward to Stoller’s photos of iconic modern New York buildings like the UN and the TWA Terminal, but I find that I am increasingly drawn to the narrative quality of his photos of working class Americans, their places of work or business, and their homes. The exhibit is a fascinating look at a mid-century America through Stoller’s inestimably talented eye, and I won’t be missing it.
Ezra Stoller: Beyond Architecture
January 24–March 2, 2013
Yossi Milo Gallery
245 Tenth Avenue
United Nations, International Team of Architects Led by Wallace K. Harrison,
New York, NY, 1954 Guggenheim Museum, Frank Lloyd Wright, New York, NY, 1959 Seagram Building, Mies van der Rohe with Philip Johnson, New York, NY, 1958 Pepsi Cola Building, Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, New York, NY, 1960 CBS Columbia, Long Island City, NY, 1954Olivetti Underwood Factory, Louis Kahn, Harrisburg, PA, 1969 Duplan Silk Mills, 1943 John Hancock Chicago construction, Skidmore, Owings & Merrill,
Chicago, IL, 1967 John Hancock Building, Skidmore, Owings and Merrill, Chicago, IL, 1970
All images by Ezra Stoller, via Yossi Milo Gallery.
On the Docket: George Bellows at The Metropolitan Museum
15/11/2012 § 2 Comments
Very excited that the retrospective George Bellows, the first comprehensive examination of the great American realist painter’s career in nearly fifty years, opened today at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Perhaps best known for his depictions of boxers and early 20th century New York, Bellows has long been a favorite of mine. I’ve included here some of the iconic works on display (which you can click through to appreciate in greater detail), but I am most looking forward to making new discoveries in his oeuvre, particularly in the area of lithography.
Of the nearly 120 works on display at the exhibition, approximately a third are devoted to scenes of New York. Some, like the Cliff Dwellers (1913) below, offer insight into tenement life in Lower Manhattan with rich detail — did you notice the street car on its way to Vesey Street? Bellows was a member of the Ashcan School, a realistic artistic movement in direct response to American Impressionism and its celebration of light. Darker in tone and unafraid of dealing with the harsh realities of poverty and the unsavory characters of urban life, Ashcan School art challenges the viewer with its journalistic pursuit of truth. Fittingly, Bellows’ canvas Up the Hudson (1908) holds the distinction of being the first Ashcan painting acquired by the Metropolitan, in 1911. The artist was only 29 at the time, making him one of the youngest artists represented in the museum’s collection.
George Bellows is on display at The Metropolitan until February 18, 2013, after which it will travel to the Royal Academy of Arts, London (March 16 – June 2013).
November 15, 2012 — February 18, 2013
The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Words || Richard Avedon
13/08/2012 § 2 Comments
Too good to not share.
Let’s promise to not wait for our Mondays anymore.
“I believe in maniacs. I believe in type As. I believe that you’ve got to love your work so much that it is all you want to do. I believe you must betray your mistress for your work, you betray your wife for your work; I believe that she must betray you for her work. I believe that work is the one thing in the world that never betrays you, that lasts. If I were going to be a politician, if I were going to be a scientist, I would do it every day. I wouldn’t wait for Monday. I don’t believe in weekends.
If you’re headed for a life that’s only involved with making money and that you hope for satisfaction somewhere else, you’re headed for a lot of trouble. And whatever replaces vodka when you’re 45 is what you’re going to be doing.”
Richard Avedon (1923 – 2004)
Photographed by Alfred Eisenstaedt in New York, 1963.
Image via the Life Archives.
Desired Destination: Las Calles de Borges
08/08/2012 § 1 Comment
True, I’ve already been to Buenos Aires. But there is something about the land of polo and Peron that keeps calling my name, not least of which was finding Ian Ruschel‘s gorgeous short film in which he follows a fictitious Jorge Luis Borges through the city. If you haven’t yet been, you must. go. immediately.
In the meantime: see my trip here,
find a few of my favorite places to antique in BA here,
and see my trip to the Argentine Polo Open here.
Quite Continental Desired Destinations
Rabbit Hole || Aviatrix Club
11/07/2012 § 3 Comments
With the 75th anniversary of Amelia Earhart’s disappearance this month, my discovery of these cigarette cards detailing famous airwomen seemed positively apropos. Dating from sometime between 1923 and 1939 and part of an large collection of cigarette cards maintained by the New York Public Library. I was impressed to see the inclusion of these high-flying ladies in this set of 50, as the majority of the women included in the other sets were chosen because of how beautiful they were — “beauties of the world,” “beauties of the stage,” etc. — not because they were the first to fly a plane across the Atlantic, like badass Beryl Markham, above.
Pictured with their favorite planes, these ladies are the perfect mascots for my summer wanderlust — I also included images of the flip side of the cards, complete with their exploits and fancy titles. I hope you enjoy them as much as I did.
To see the whole set, hop down the rabbit hole here.
All images via the New York Public Library Digital Gallery.
Rabbit Hole || Summer in the Vogue Archives
26/06/2012 § 4 Comments
July 1919, illustration by Helen Dryden.
Similar to the recent release of vintage beach fashion images from Vogue Spain that I highlighted a few weeks back, US Vogue has also decided to open up their vast archive to give us a look at summer fashions dating back to 1899. Containing some very famous and iconic images, you know I couldn’t resist. I selected a few of my favorites, but be sure to head over to Vogue to see them all.
These images have me looking forward to my planned
trip to Ft. Tilden this weekend, definitely…
July 1928, photograph by George Hoyningen-Huene.
July 1930, photograph by George Hoyningen-Huene.
May 1933, photograph by Edward Steichen.
July 1940, photograph by Toni Frissell.
May 1941, photograph by Horst P. Horst.
June 1949, photograph by Clifford Coffin.
December 1952, photograph by Richard Rutledge.
July 1954, photograph by Karen Radkai.
January 1956, photograph by Richard Rutledge.
January 1958, photograph by Richard Rutledge.
January 1959, photograph by Jerry Schatzberg.
January 1959, photograph by Tom Palumbo.
January 1966, photograph by John Cowan.
June 1976, photograph by Arthur Elgort.
June 1991, photograph by Patrick Demarchelier.
Hop futher down the rabbit hole here.
All images via Vogue.
15/06/2012 § 7 Comments
In honor of Father’s Day, a little something I found in the Life Archives…
One morning in 1949, the Kindergarten class of Ms. Doris Morcom at Sedgwick Elementary School in West Hartford, Connecticut, all drew portraits of their dads from memory for an upcoming Fathers’ Night at the school…and here we can compare the portraits with the subjects themselves, in photos taken by Al Fenn. Aside from some startling accuracies, I love how these photos also give us a look at men’s style as the 1940s were giving way to the 1950s.
If you’d like to read the original article, which appeared in the December 26, 1949 issue of Life Magazine, you can find it here.
For fun, the fathers drew Ms. Morcom for their children.
Happy Father’s Day!
All images via the Life Archives.
Field Notes || Herb Ritts: L.A. Style at the Getty Center
30/04/2012 § 1 Comment
New York is a vertical city, and its skyscrapers are climbing ever higher (case in point, just today my next-door neighbor One World Trade claimed the title of tallest building in New York). All that height, especially in the canyons of the Financial District or parts of Midtown, can feel a bit oppressive at times to someone like me, who grew up in one of the most horizontal cities in the world. For comparison’s sake I could give you some facts and figures about square mileage and population — essentially: LA is larger, while NYC is more populous — but nowhere is this “horizontal-ness” illustrated better than from the observation pavilions of the Getty Center.
Known for its impressive views from the Pacific to Downtown, the Getty Center is one of the best places to take in the urban sprawl that is Los Angeles (if it happens to be a clear day). Designed by Richard Meier, the Center also houses a large portion of the Getty art collection and has been the setting for a marriage proposal or two…thousand.
Familiar vistas aside, I also made the trip to the Center to catch the Herb Ritts retrospective, L.A. Style. Best known for his black and white portraits of celebrities and fashion editorials, equally impressive are Ritts’ nudes and his exploration of the concept of gender. A compact exhibition, complete with large-scale prints, vintage magazines and a screening of his music videos (e.g., Janet Jackson’s Love Will Never Do (Without You), Chris Isaak’s Wicked Game), L.A. Style is an excellent collection of some Ritts’ most iconic images, taken in the 1980s and 90s.
Herb Ritts: L.A. Style at the Getty Center
April 3 – August 26, 2012
The Getty Center
1200 Getty Center Drive
Los Angeles, CA 90049
Open Tuesday – Sunday
Sitting In A Tree
14/02/2012 § Leave a comment