Our fascination with beginnings, with the nascent in art, music, literature, history, etc., is bound up with our obsession with what makes us “us”: if the ego is but a crude sculpture of our past experiences, then those lumps of clay which form its base should hold more than a passing interest. It’s precisely our preoccupation with origin stories that makes ‘The New Tide”, an exhibit of photographer Gordon Parks’ early work showing November 4 - February 18 at the National Ga
A typically pointed work by Oaxaca artist Yescka “Oh that’s pretty. What a nice combination of colors.” That is Yescka, a prominent Oaxaca City graffiti artist, dismissing with a mirthless chuckle street art he considers divorced from the political and/or social context in which it’s made. It’s a judgment that neatly sums up the aesthetic stance of this increasingly visible state capital’s cadre of sprayers and stencilers and splatters, one that can be traced back – at least
Work by artists Peque vrs and Pwoz Mac, calle Morelos and Roja Gonzalez In case you hadn’t heard, art imitates life, which is no less true for being a tired old cliche. Oaxaca City’s street art, for instance, so troublingly resembles reality that authorities regularly paint over political murals as part of “civic beautification.” Thus, a visitor to the colonial southern capital who knows something of her history of resistance and conflict might be surprised to see so much un
As artists, the sources of our inspiration are rarely chosen deliberately; they choose us, seizing our imagination and wringing from us works which offer a version of themselves filtered through our own particular psyches. Annamarie Pabst’s path from the porcine and balletic to the searing and bleak involves multiple continents and large temporal leaps. There will be no pat explanations, however; assigning fixed meaning to works of art is most often clumsy and destructive wor
Nothing fogs up the windscreen of the critical faculties like having within arm’s reach an eight-foot-tall tree (fake, but made of real wood) jutting up from the center of your table, decorated all over with small plastic bottles of Patron tequila. Even less conducive to forming a clear-eyed appraisal of a restaurant’s pluses and minuses is having a stream of un-aged agave spirit etch a path down your esophagus vis-à-vis a burnished steel luge wielded by a giggling waitress.