Wednesday, March 13, 2013

The first American Pope!

Annuntio vobis gaudium magnum; habemus Papam:
Eminentissimum ac Reverendissimum Dominum,
Dominum Georgium Marium
Sanctae Romanae Ecclesiae Cardinalem Bergoglio
qui sibi nomen imposuit Franciscum.
American in the true meaning of the word (which means "from The Americas") as Argentina's Jorge Mario Bergoglio becomes the first Pope from the New World!

This is a win-win situation for the Church... an Italian from Argentina, which is essentially the New World's version of Italy anyway... brilliant! An Italian Pope from the New World!

The son of an Italian immigrant to Argentina, the new Pope seems like a really good guy for both of those who endorse the Church's dogma as well as those who appreciate a socially active Pope.

An a Jesuit! WOW! That even harder to believe than a Pope who wasn't born in Europe! If my memory serves me right, the only other Jesuit ever offered the Papacy declined it.

And the last Spanish speaking Pope was the Borgia Pope... cough, cough...

And by the way... his name is Pope Francis (and not Ignatius as a good Jesuit would have chosen... which is of itself an interesting sign) and NOT Francis The First as nincompoop talking heads on TV keep saying... he's the first Pope named Francis - not the first King named Francis.... otherwise the announcement would have been:  qui sibi nomen imposuit Franciscum Primum.

This is what happens when Latin gets dropped from being taught in schools.

My best to the 266th Pope!

Vaya Pana!

Bring your ideas

Artomatic Happy Hour - Focus on Music

On Thursday March 28, 2013 from 6:00 to 8:00 PM join new Board Member Jerry Hergenreder to discuss strategies for the presentation of music within the next Artomatic

Bring your ideas and suggestions. 

Old Dominion Brewhouse
1219 9th Street, NW
Washington, DC, 20001

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

International artists residencies in the US and abroad.

On Wednesday March 13, 2013, from 5:00-7.30 PM, join members of the Washington Glass School, Flux Studios and invited guests for a roundtable discussion at the Pepco Edison Place Gallery about international artists residencies in the US and abroad. 
Register now!

702 8th St NW
Washington, DC, DC 20068
(202) 872-3396

35 Years of Zenith

Zenith Gallery is celebrating its 35th anniversary this year - in gallery years that's like 350 years! Join them at the celebration of their anniversary!
Join Us for a Celebration of Our 35th Anniversary 
Zenith Gallery at the
Sculpture Space at Eleven Eleven Pennsylvania Avenue 

"The Best of All Worlds ... Modern and Traditional Art" 
The Sculpture of Paul Martin Wolff and Oil Paintings by Bradley Stevens  
MEET THE ARTISTS RECEPTION: Wednesday, March 13, 5:30 - 8:00 PM 
SHOW DATES: Now through April 27, 2013  

Monday, March 11, 2013

Country & Western Ahmadinejad

A snowy wet Washington, DC area drive finds a Country & Western marriage between Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and Jerry Jeff Walker.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

ESB at night

Empire State Building at night

Saturday, March 09, 2013

Walk around Scope

I came in early today to re-hang the booth, as I had taken everything down last night just in case new leaks sprung. In any event, I then had time to walk around the fair a bit... here are some images:

One of my favorite pieces - seen at Parlor Gallery from Ashbury Park, NJ
A rare sighting of glass, from Sophia Collier Gallery, Sausalito, CA
Seen at Aicon Gallery, NYC and London
Seen at Allegra LaViola Gallery, NYC... cough, cough
Seen at La Lanta Gallery, Bangkok
Artomaticky wall from Fred Torres Collaborations, NYC
Seen at Weldon Arts, Brooklyn
What looked like colored felt wrapped around foam core to reproduce Van Gogh's works... just sayin'
Spectacular self-contained video sculpture by Marck, showing at Lich Feld Gallery, Basel
The usual gorgeous light work at Baltimore's C. Grimaldis Gallery
Self contained video sculptures by Gabriel Barcia-Colombo at Muriel Guepin Gallery, Brooklyn

Friday, March 08, 2013

Rain, slush, snow and leaks

The snow storm arrived in New York overnight and this city responded beautifully... I walked several blocks from my hotel to the Scope Art Fair and the most dangerous event proved to be the New Yorkers with huge umbrellas and looking down to avoid the fierce cold wind as a slushly snow fell... as a result of the Venturi effect caused by the tall buildings, there were very fierce winds at every corner as well.

When I was a kid in Brooklyn, my high school was in Long Island City in Queens, and I used to spend over an hour in the subway going to High School... I am sure that we had school "snow days" back then. but frankly, I don't remember ever been off from school because of snow.

When I got to Scope I discovered that the the old post office's roof had been leaking above my neighbor's space (Fitzroy Knox from New York) and the two pretty gallerists were bravely securing work as the Scope crew attacked the problem.

And I must give kudos to the Scope crew.

As I stood watching them tarp over the leaks and then build a roof under the leaking area, I was thinking to myself "These union guys are really on the ball here... they might just give some of these New York unions a good name if they are not careful..."

Later I found out that these were not the union guys responding to the barely avoided disaster, but in fact the Scope crew, and they deserve a superbly earned "Well Done!"

The Scope director (Sonja Hofstetter) was on the spot and working the issue, and the tall good looking guy (who looks a little like a young Jim Carey) in charge of the work crew, was so nit picky about making sure that it was a perfect job, that even after the space had been re-roofed, he actually had a guy come over and tape  the edges and re-paint the whole thing.

In cases like this, the response of an art fair's crew to unplanned close calls like this is the key to avoiding disaster and these guys had half a dozen people on the job right away and it showed in the manner and professionalism with which they responded and the final solution to the problem.

Later on I found out that the skinny guy directing the response to the leak is in fact the owner of Scope (Alexis Hubshman), which makes this an even cooler response, as there's nothing like a hands-on boss who gets his hands dirty to make things happen.

Check out the picture to the left - these guys essentially re-roofed the leaky area and made it look good.

Great job Scopers!

Thursday, March 07, 2013

Seen in a hoity toity art fair in New York...

You know how art critics are always slamming Artomatic for this and for that?

Just sayin'

Only a few days left before deadline!

One thing that nearly every artist on the planet (including myself) shares is rejection letters/emails from galleries, juried competitions, curators and your aunt Elvira... in fact, since I have been a juror, gallerist and curator for a ton of art shows, I hate to say that I've written a fuckload of rejection letters myself.

And now Worn Magazine wants them! Read the below note from them:
Dear Readers,  
I'm excited to announce that the Spring/Summer issue of Worn Magazine is well under way and will be released at the end of April. The theme of this upcoming issue is "Dreams." One way to interpret this theme is to consider the personal journey we're all on to accomplish our dreams.
One important part of this journey is enduring rejection and then going on to kick butt anyway. Because I want all aspects of dreaming to be represented in this issue (not just the typical ones) I'd like you brave souls to send us your rejection letters so that we can print them in the upcoming issue or on our website. In addition to your letter, please include a short paragraph that explains how you've gone on to kick butt since that once unfortunate correspondence.
This is your opportunity to stick it to the man! [My note: highly sexist... artists get rejection letters/emails from all sexual varieties... not just the man... that's me trying to be semantically hip as a Virgo... I know what they mean]
Personally, I have two rejection letters I'd be willing to share, one from the FBI and another from the L.A. Times. 
Please address your letters as follows:
Subject- Rejection Is the Best Protection
Send to:
Please include a scanned copy of your letter OR forward us the initial rejection email.

Deadline to submit letters is Monday, March 11. 
Be brave! 
Nicole Aguirre, Editor-in-Chief

Wednesday, March 06, 2013

Art Underground is coming to Crystal City!

I can tell that this is gonna be big!

Art Underground will celebrate its launch on Saturday, March 16 with an open house and free mega paint-off hosted by ArtJamz from 6pm – 10pm at 2100 Crystal Drive. This event will be an energetic opportunity for the public to get a taste of the newest arts and cultural destination in the area with tours of brand new artist studios (Studios Underground) the Gallery Underground curated by the Arlington Artists Alliance, music, beverages, and snacks. Stop by and you can also catch Synetic’s latest installment of its famous silent Shakespeare series, The Tempest, at 8 PM (visit for tickets).

The Crystal City Business Improvement District (BID), in partnership with Vornado/Charles E. Smith and the Arlington Artists Alliance (AAA), is transforming five blocks of Crystal City’s interior retail space into a vibrant arts and cultural destination with galleries, studios, interactive exhibits and activities, performance and classroom spaces, and a host of special events. This effort will create a powerful new incubator for the arts that will further activate and support Crystal City businesses and retail by attracting additional exposure, visitation, business and opportunities.

Art Underground is a collection of arts programming that will initially include:
  • Studios Underground: an outlet for local artists to create, practice and showcase their talents while providing an engaging cultural experience for area residents, employees, visitors and guests.
  • Gallery Underground (formerly the Northern Virginia Art Center): a showcase of original artwork by regional artists with monthly rotating exhibits to excite the imagination, stimulate creativity, and encourage repeat visitation.
  • FotoWalk Underground: in partnership with FotoDC, FotoWalk is a yearlong, 1000-foot, 150-image gallery that changes every six months.
  • Synetic Theater: the premier American physical theater, fusing dynamic art forms – such as text, drama, movement, acrobatics, dance and music.
  • Special Events: Art Underground will host and present ongoing activities and events, including monthly ArtJamz sessions.

Details here.


Seems like every other woman in New York is wearing those tall hooker boots - you know, the kind that Julia Roberts' character wears in Pretty Woman?

I'm pretty sure that I've never seen anyone in the DMV wear boots like these...

Just sayin'

Scope about to start...

It's all up and running and the fair opens in half an hour for the VIPs and press... just made a quick round of the fair and Contemporary Wing from DC and Grimaldis from Baltimore are looking good. Here are some shots of the booth and also the wall in front of me, where all through the fair I'm gonna be looking at a skinny nude Swiss woman smoking a cigarette - I understand from the staff at Lausanne's Dubner Moderne that she's a banker.
View of Alida Anderson Art Projects at SCOPE NY

View of Alida Anderson Art Projects at SCOPE NY

Ivan Simeon "Are you Beautiful"

One of the great joint projects of painters and bankers—the modern art market—was also an invention of the Gilded Age. What made the art market as we know it possible, starting in the middle of the nineteenth century, was the availability of cash.
Banks and the art market.... naaah! Read it here.

Tuesday, March 05, 2013

Coolest "somewhat old" building on the planet

Empire State Building from Madison Square Garden, NYC

The Joker is in Gotham again...

"Self Portrait as The Joker"
Andrew Wodzianski
28 x 20
Oil on Canvas
Will be at Booth J09 at SCOPE NEW YORK starting tomorrow as part of the "Superheroes" curated exhibition...

Monday, March 04, 2013


To super hard working DMV area artist Judith Peck, who just won the Juror's choice award from the (Louisiana) Masur Museum's juried competition from George T.M. Shackelford.

Peck is an artists' artist - by that I mean that Judy (whose work I love and have taken to art fairs many times) is admired by nearly every artist who is familiar with it.... she has exhibited widely around the US and her work has been featured multiple times in art magazines and newspaper reviews.

Among these, most recently in 2012 alone her work has been featured in The Artists’ Magazine, Combustus 13, Poets and Artists, The Birmingham Arts Journal and the bookBourgeon, Fifty Artists Write About Their Work, published by Day 8 Publishers.

This hard working and widely exhibited artist participated in eight exhibitions in 2012 alone, including a solo show at the Hoyt Institute for the Arts in New Castle, PA and an invitational show at the Georgia Museum of Art. 

And she works in one of the most difficult art niches that exist - nearly always doing portraits. That is one hard science... the subtle ability to not only capture someone's likeness, but also deliver someone's psychological and non kinetic make-up -- that's what makes Peck tick and cross over from a super gifted technical artist into that super rare upper artmosphere of the great portraitists of our time.

She sells well too... and as any art dealer can tell you, selling someone else portrait's is one of the hardest things to do on planet Artdealer... but collectors just fall in love with Peck's ability to "deliver" someone; not just an image of that person.

Peck’s work has also been exhibited widely in multiple art fairs, including the Aqua Art Fair in Miami Beach, and the Affordable Art Fair in New York and Red Dot in Miami.

Go Judith!

Senator Durbin... why?

For many years, large national retailers, big business and many hungry state tax collectors have hoped for new Internet sales tax collection policy. They want Congress to pass a federal law that would allow tax agents from one state to enforce their sales tax laws on retailers based in other states, even when a business is based thousands of miles away. Nearly everyone that I know opposes this misguided idea that goes against everything that the Internet stands for, and I (like millions of others worldwide) believe that small businesses selling via the Internet should only be subject to the tax laws of the states in which they operate.

The news from Capitol Hill is clear and just like the economy... it's grim.

Internet sales tax supporters are convinced that 2013 is their year, and they are determined to pass a new Internet sales tax bill when our out of control "tax everything" Congress (that refuses to face real financial austerity) tackles "corporate tax reform" in spite of the fact that "corporate" and the millions of small American businesses that operate on the Internet seldom share the same anything.

In December, Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), the misguided idiot who smells more and more sources to suck money out of the economy and is the sponsor of Internet sales tax legislation, publicly announced that he had a commitment from the Senate Finance Committee to "take it up early next year and move it to the floor."  Why Durbin wants to lead an effort to bleed more and more taxes is something between himself and his big money donors...

Your opinion matters. If you oppose giving state tax collectors new powers to impose and enforce out-of-state sales tax burdens on small businesses that sell via the Internet, now is the time to make your voice heard.

This is not a Republican or Democrat issue - but an issue that deals with the freedom of the worldwide web and the never-ending appetite for some in Congress to try to tax any and everything that moves.

Take the time to email, call or write to your two Senators and your Congress person... feel free to use, edit and adapt the letter below, but DO SOMETHING!

Dear Member of Congress,
As your constituent and one of the millions of Americans concerned with this issue, I'm asking you not to impose any new sales tax laws on small businesses operating on the Internet.
In the 1992 Quill Decision, the Supreme Court ruled that it was unconstitutional to allow state tax enforcement authorities to impose their sales tax laws on small businesses located in other states.  However, an effort backed by giant retailers and a group of state legislators is trying to push Congress to overturn the Quill Decision and establish an unfair tax regime that would force small online businesses to be subject to sales tax laws all across the country, regardless of where the small business is actually located.
Millions of American small business retailers, would be directly impacted by any new Internet sales tax system. It would increase the cost of doing business and shopping on-line, which would hurt sellers and buyers alike. I believe that small businesses selling via the Internet should only be subject to the tax laws of the states in which they operate. Instead of imposing new tax burdens on small businesses, I would encourage Congress to do EXACTLY the opposite and look at new policies that encourage small business growth and development on the Internet, which in turn will spur job growth and increase consumer choice.
As your constituent, I would ask that you please oppose any efforts to impose new tax burdens on small businesses operating on the Internet.
Thank you for your support.

Sunday, March 03, 2013

Mingering Mike in the museum!

Between 1968 and 1977, Mingering Mike released around 50 albums, each with its own hand-drawn album art, and played sold-out shows around the world. Yet if you haven’t heard of the prolific soul and funk singer, it’s because he was entirely fictional, but the art was real and has just been acquired by the Smithsonian American Art Museum.
Details in Hyperallergic here.

Saturday, March 02, 2013

Next week: SCOPE New York

Next week is Armory week in New York, which means that several art fairs will be going on the Big Apple, all anchored around the Armory fair.

Starting on Wednesday, we will be at the Scope Art Fair, booth J09... from the DMV Contemporary Wing will also be there, so if any of you are heading to visit the art fairs, please make sure to stop by and say hi to me and CW.

We're all hoping that the fiscal Omaggedon doesn't hurt the fair too much... feh!

  • VIP and Press First View, Wednesday, March 6: 3pm – 9pm (By Invitation)


  • Thursday, March 7: 11am - 8pm
  • Friday, March 8: 11am - 8pm
  • Saturday, March 9: 11am - 8pm
  • Sunday, March 10: 11am - 7pm
Skylight at Moynihan Station
New York City Main Post Office
312 West 33rd Street
New York, NY 10001