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Archives: June 2012

Museum Moves: Paul Schimmel Out at LA MOCA; New Hires at Japan Society, UT’s Ransom Center


Footage of Cai Guo-Qiang’s “Mystery Circle: Explosion Event for The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles.” An exhibition of Cai’s work is on view through July 30 at MOCA.

• The divorce of Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes is not the only L.A. break-up making headlines and raising eyebrows this summer Friday. Paul Schimmel, chief curator at the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art, has left the institution after 22 years. It’s not clear whether he resigned or was ousted, but according to a statement issued this evening by MOCA announcing Schimmel’s departure, the exhibition space at the Geffen Contemporary will be named in his honor.

• Back in New York, Miwako Tezuka will take over directorship of Japan Society’s gallery from Joe Earle, whose retirement is effective September 30. Formerly an associate curator at Asia Society, Tezuka will be the first Japanese director of Japan Society Gallery. She begins her new position on Monday.

• The University of Texas at Austin’s Harry Ransom Center has named Jessica S. McDonald, a curator of photography at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, as its new chief curator of photography. She starts in September.
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Mediabistro Job Fair

Mediabistro Job FairLand your next big gig! Join us on Janaury 27  at the Altman Building in New York City for an incredible opportunity to meet with hiring managers from the top New York media compaies, network with other professionals and industry leaders, and land your next job. Register now!

Shepard Fairey Updates John Pasche’s Rolling Stones Logo for Band’s 50th Anniversary

Sandwiched between Queen Elizabeth’s Diamond Jubilee and the Olympics comes yet another reason to run amok in the streets of London: Mick and the gang are fifty. July 12 will mark five decades since a group of youngsters who called themselves The Rollin’ Stones played their first gig (at London’s Marquee), and the band tapped Shepard Fairey to create a logo to celebrate the big 5-0. The designer, a die-hard Stones fan who previously worked with Mick Jagger and Dave Stewart on SuperHeavy, says that he felt “overwhelmed” by the commission. “One of the first things I asked Mick was ‘don’t you think the tongue has to be included?.’ He responded ‘Yeah, I guess it ought to be.’ Case closed,” explains Fairey in a statement posted yesterday to his website. “I was very humbled and honored to be asked to work on the 50th anniversary logo, so my objective was to service and showcase the Stones’ legacy rather than try to make my contribution dominant.” Starting with John Pasche’s 1971 lips-and-tongue logo—”the most iconic, potent, and enduring logo in rock ‘n’ roll history,” according to Fairey—he played with ways to creatively and memorably integrate the number 50. Noted Fairey, “I think the solution speaks for itself in celebrating the Stones’ trademark icon and historical anniversary.”

Quote of Note | Rineke Dijkstra

“I feel an affinity with the tradition of documentary photography, but my photographs nevertheless have aspects that make them different. I’m attracted to portraiture because of the personal relationships I develop with people I meet and am interested in. These are encounters where, each time, something happens and a certain emotional interaction takes place. I’m looking for something that’s real. To me photography means that you can point to something and show other people the unexpected, the unusual. Precisely by bringing life to a standstill, you can capture things that often go unnoticed day to day–it has to do with the extraordinary quality of the ordinary. I’ve chosen photography as a medium for making art because I want to show something that cannot be expressd in any other.”

-Artist Rineke Dijkstra, in an interview with Jan van Adrichem that appears in the catalogue accompanying “Rineke Dijkstra: A Retrospective,” which opens today at the Guggenheim

Above: “Vondelpark, Amsterdam, Netherlands, June 19, 2005.” © Rineke Dijkstra (Courtesy the artist and Jan Mot)

Cindy Sherman, Bill Viola, Michael Graves, Steven Holl Among New Members of National Academy


Cindy Sherman’s Untitled #119 (1983)

The cultural triple threat that is the National Academy (the New York-based museum, art school, and honorary association of artists and architects founded in 1825) today announced its newest members, who will gain the fancy title of “Academician” and join a group that ranges from Albert Bierstadt and Frederic Church to Robert Rauschenberg and Rafael Viñoly. This year marks the first time that artists working in video, photography, and installation were elgible for nomination—Academicians voted last year to revise the traditional categories of membership that included “Painting, Sculpture, Printmaking, and Architecture” to “Visual Arts and Architecture”—a change reflected in this mixed-media-loving group of newly elected visual artists: Siah Armajani, Richard Artschwager, David Diao, Robert Gober, Robert Irwin, Shirley Jaffe, Joan Jonas, Bruce Nauman, Peter Saul, Joel Shapiro, Cindy Sherman, Richard Tuttle, Bill Viola, and Ursula von Rydingsvard. From the world of architecture, the Academy will welcome Stan Allen, Wendy Evans Joseph, M. Paul Friedberg, Jeanne Gang, Michael Graves, Steven Holl, Gregg Pasquarelli, Annabelle Selldorf, and Bernard Tschumi. “This new group includes great artists and architects who should long ago have been Academicians, plus a whole new generation,” said architect Tod Williams, a member since 2010, in a statement issued today by the organization. The 23 new members will be inducted this fall in a ceremony led by Robert Hobbs of Virginia Commonwealth University.

In Brief: Daphne Guinness Fashion Sale, Dalí Drama, Remembering Maurice Sendak, Jambox Goes Big

• Here’s your chance to acquire an epic Christian Lacroix confection or capture an elusive pair of “Angel Wing” platform ankle boots (pictured) by Alexander McQueen. This evening in London, Christie’s will sell 100 pieces from the personal wardrobe of Daphne Guinness. She’ll use proceeds from the sale—which includes haute couture and accessories from designers such as Balenciaga, Chanel, Christopher Kane, and Gareth Pugh—to launch a charity in the name of Isabella Blow, whose sartorial estate she purchased in 2011 (to save it from being dispersed among high bidders). The new Isabella Blow Foundation will seek to continue Blow’s support of “new and emerging talent in the sphere where art and fashion meet,” a cause also dear to Guinness’s heart.

• A watercolor-and-gouache drawing by Salvador Dalí was stolen from its spotlit perch on the wall of Venus over Manhattan, art collector Adam Lindemann‘s newly opened gallery on New York’s Upper East Side. The thief grabbed “Cartel de Don Juan Tenorio,” valued at $150,000 and owned by Lindemann, and stuffed it into a black shopping bag before walking out. Security camera footage shows him wearing a determined expression and a gingham shirt. “There was a security guard standing right there, so how you don’t see a young, sweaty guy with a shopping bag I don’t understand,” Lindemann told The New York Times. “I don’t really understand what’s the point. What do you do with a stolen drawing by Dalí?”
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Demand for Design Services Down Nationwide, According to AIA’s Architecture Billings Index

Despite its widely beloved status, all is not well in the field of architecture. Our old friend the Architecture Billings Index dropped significantly last month. The American Institute of Architects reported the May ABI score was 45.8, following the previous month’s 48.4. This score reflects a sharp decrease in demand for design services (any score above 50 indicates an increase in billings, and April marked the first negative reading in five months). “Given the ongoing uncertainly in the economic outlook, particularly the weak job growth numbers in recent months, this should be an alarm bell going off for the design and construction industry,” said AIA Chief Economist Kermit Baker in a statement announcing the dip. “The commercial/industrial sector is the only one recording gains in design activity at present, and even this sector has slowed significantly.”

Design Jobs: Coldwater Creek, Nielsen, TRIBEZA Magazine

This week, Coldwater Creek is hiring a senior web designer, while Nielsen needs a senior graphic designer. TRIBEZA magazine is on the hunt for a designer or art director, and Brenau University is looking for a director of multimedia. Get the scoop on these openings and more below, and find additional just-posted gigs on Mediabistro.

Find more great design jobs on the UnBeige job board. Looking to hire? Tap into our network of talented UnBeige pros and post a risk-free job listing. For real-time openings and employment news, follow @MBJobPost.

Starchitects’ Sketches on the Block in Architecture for Humanity Auction

On Valentine’s Day, Architecture for Humanity co-founder Cameron Sinclair kicked off the organization’s latest fundraising initiative with an appropriately amorous declaration: “My name is Cameron and I love architecture.” The campaign’s big finish is the “I Love Architecture” auction, an eBay-hosted bonanza of one-of-a kind sketches, renderings, prints, paintings, and more by fifty top architects and designers. Here’s your chance to be charitable and acquire a Frank Gehry sketch (an ink on napkin original). Among the 73 other works up for bid through Friday are a stunning photo of Biloxi, Mississippi by Robert Leslie, Richard Rogers’ no-nonsense diagram of the Pompidou Center, a whimsical self-portrait of an “emerging” Daniel Libeskind, and a Pac-Man-esque print by Kevin Roche. If you’re looking for something three-dimensional, we suggest putting your money on the “giant origami tiger” whipped up by Chris Bosse of LAVA. Or pop for the auction’s lone pigskin: an “I Love Architecture” football autographed by Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck, who graduated from Stanford last week with a degree in architectural design. Every last cent of proceeds from the auction will support Architecture for Humanity’s humanitarian projects in more than 20 countries, so bid your heart out.

Artnet Magazine, Digital Publishing Pioneer, Folds after 16 Years

Brace yourselves, art and design lovers: artnet Magazine is no more. The pioneering online art magazine is ceasing publication, effective immediately. Artnet’s French- and German-language publications are also being folded. The abrupt decision “is an economic one,” according to the brief announcement posted today to the magazine’s website, “and reflects the fact that during its 16 years of digital life, the magazine was never able to pay its own way.” Archived artnet content will remain available on artnet.com, at least for now. Longtime contributor Charlie Finch penned a brief farewell. “Nothing lasts forever,” he wrote earlier today. “But it is a shame that, at the point at which artnet Magazine’s content is more comprehensive and lucid than ever, that it will disappear.”

The fate of artnet Magazine was apparently sealed by a leadership change at the Berlin-based company, which reported 2011 revenues of €13.3 million (approximately $16.6 million at current exchange). Hans Neuendorf is retiring after 20 years at the helm of artnet AG. Stepping into the role of CEO and chairman is Jacob Pabst, who since January has served as president of Artnet Worldwide (the 120-employee operation based in New York). His appointment, announced today, is effective July 1. It may not surprise you to learn that Pabst, 39, has a degree in economics. In his previous role as artnet’s chief information officer, Pabst introduced online auctions and analytics reports to the site. Pabst plans to focus on expanding marketing and sales efforts for the artnet platform, now stripped of fresh editorial content. For the time being, archived artnet stories will remain available on artnet.com.

Quote of Note | Calvin Tomkins

“A month before Damien Hirst‘s retrospective opened at Tate Modern in early April, hundreds of his spot paintings filled all eleven Gagosian galleries worldwide, including the two in London. [Larry] Gagosian gave a party for Hirst at the Arts Club on Dover Street, and invited an eclectic mix of artists, dealers, and big-money types, along with the sort of upper-class socialites who now want to be associated with contemporary art—people like David Cholmondely, the current Great Chamberlain, who walks backward before the Queen when she opens Parliament. [Tate Gallery director Nicholas] Serota was there, after a full day that included speaking at a memorial for Lucian Freud, who died last July. Serota excels at this sort of thing. He went off by himself, on the morning of the event, and wrote a brief, evocative, highly personal tribute that compared Freud to a ‘a bantam prize fighter in training—nippy, sinewy, always somehow poised for action.’ At the Arts Club that evening, I sat down with Serota at a table in the back room where Gagosian was entertaining Simon and Joyce Reuben, wealthy British collectors. Gagosian jokingly told Simon Reuben that Serota needed fifty million pounds to complete the Tate Modern’s expansion project, and that Reuben should sell his boat and give it to him. ‘You can have your name on an oil tank,’ he added. Serota said, ‘You’ll be known long after Larry is forgotten.’”

-Calvin Tomkins in “The Modern Man,” a profile of Tate Gallery director Nicholas Serota that appears in the July 2 issue of The New Yorker

Pictured: A Damien Hirst “Spot Clock,” yours for £305 at Tate Modern’s gift shop

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