Previous: copyrights (25)

Next: something only an art historian could get confused about (13)


Post #481 • February 25, 2005, 9:04 AM • 57 Comments

Poking around the Herald for arts stories has become as hard as finding them on the Sun-Sent site. Rather than shooting the Roundup in the head, which was my first impulse this morning, I plan to change the roundup to reflect only stories that matter which I have seen during the previous week. I will weigh print stories equally with online ones, because the difference is starting to not make a difference, and while I will favor local stories I'm not going to confine myself to them anymore.

Pardon my cynicism, but I'm going to assume that Shelley Acoca's promise of expanded arts coverage (comment #11) at the Herald is a load of hooey until I see otherwise.

See you there: Ambrosino has an opening tonight. I've seen one video work of Francie Bishop Good and liked it; she's showing there along with Manuel Losada and Carolyn Monastra. This weekend I'm going to try to get out to Figuratively Speaking at MAM.




February 25, 2005, 7:33 PM

Franklin, why don't you write Ms. Acoca a nice, civil letter asking her to elaborate on the Herald's proposed expansion of arts coverage for the benefit of the blog audience, which is surely more interested in the matter than most, and should be of concern to anybody at the Herald who takes the arts at all seriously.


mon ami miami

February 25, 2005, 9:59 PM

Tonight is also a solo exhibition for Francis Trombly at Thachmes gallery in north miami. I plan to see that.



February 26, 2005, 12:55 AM

Yeah, that'll be good too. There's also a Subtropics event at Dorsch at 7.

Times like this I miss Mary Sutter's calendars at Street.



February 26, 2005, 6:22 AM

i've been looking forward to frances trombly's show for some time, and it did not disappoint.



February 26, 2005, 7:09 AM

I think Jack's report of $17 for Norton was the most useful information. I can now save time and money by not going there. Jack should get paid for his self-sacrificing report.


Pet quiet

February 26, 2005, 9:17 AM

the francis show at leonard tachmes was really good!



February 26, 2005, 6:00 PM

Speaking of "expanded arts coverage", El Nuevo Herald has posted on Sunday, feb 20, the following long article, in the "Galeria" section:

Rutas del arte
Retrospectiva de Jules Olitski en The Goldman Warehouse

Isn't this the Spanish language version of the Miami Herald? Is their idea of "expanded arts coverage" to write up the Olitski show in the Spanish language paper and Gattorno in the English language newspaper? AArghh!



February 26, 2005, 8:00 PM

The Olitski piece in the Spanish Herald is just a capsule "review" akin to the ones in New Times. There is obviously no logic to it not appearing in the Herald in English, except that the people who run the Spanish version may care more about the arts (the Spanish Herald is a separate and different paper, not just a translation of the other one).



February 26, 2005, 8:13 PM

To whom it may concern: If you see a show and like it (or not), it would be useful to say what the show involved and why you thought it was good or not. Otherwise, to someone who hasn't seen it, the fact you did or did not like the show is meaningless.


la pucepuce

February 26, 2005, 8:16 PM

who thinks north miami is over ?



February 26, 2005, 9:20 PM

After our oritinal exchange, which I reported on the page Franklin links to above, I sent Ms. Acoca a (much more polite) e-mail suggesting she stop by here and engage Artblog in a dialogue. I also pointed out that art listings were a dire need the Herald could fill. No response. Oh, well.

Miami art exchange used to have good listings. Go see art was an attempt to do the same. The problem is that to be useful, listings have to be somewhat comprehensive. That takes man-hours. Boring, labor-intensive, consistent man hours, the sort nobody is willing to put in without being paid. If the organizations who have the resources are unwilling to step up (they probably would be, if they get enough requests), there are two other alternatives: a system where a bunch of people donate money for some sort of service like that (not promising), or a wiki-type system where anyone can post gallery (or other?) events, although that presents a million-odd problems of its own. Suggestions?



February 26, 2005, 9:41 PM

"Boring, labor-intensive, consistent man hours, the sort nobody is willing to put in without being paid." I can't even tell you what kind of grunt-work went into Go See Art. I was just concentrating on the better galleries and even then it was a damn chore keeping it updated. I finally gave up when Basel came around and there were too many wildcards - someone would announce an opening with no closing date on the show, someone else would have three openings for one show, other shows would last for six hours, on and on. I could probably solve those issues now but at the time it was more than my text files could bear.

If someone wants to find me a modest income stream for putting GSA back online I'll do it.



February 26, 2005, 10:45 PM

If anybody should be keenly aware of and concerned about the current lack of information regarding art events, it should be the galleries and art institutions themselves. I do not understand why they haven't mobilized en masse and done something about this bush-league situation. Of course, maybe they figure that the "right" people are already on their mailing lists, and all others can just fend for themselves.



February 26, 2005, 10:50 PM

Uh, Franklin, go to the MAM show if you must, but definitely go to the Goldman Warehouse so you can post some pictures from that show. It appears the Herald will not step up to the plate on this, not that they'd do a very good job if they did.


that guy in the second to last row

February 27, 2005, 1:03 AM

yes, get over to the Goldman Warehouse immediately. (11-4 on sunday) Its a heart stopper. Olitski sets the standard for this century. I've never seen anything like it.



February 27, 2005, 2:54 AM

The latest New Times has a nominally art-related story that's depressing but of some interest (at least sociological). It concerns plans for yet more huge Britto eyesores in a public outdoor setting (as if the hideous one at Dadeland Station wasn't enough). The link is:



February 27, 2005, 3:29 AM

At least they are just palm trees, jack. That thing at the metro station is enough to make dogs turn and run.



February 27, 2005, 3:35 AM

the Frances Trombly solo was excellent. The confetti on the floor to the party streamers, it as all hand knitted and well crafted. I'm going to look forward to more of her artwork.

Tonite Liquid Blue gallery is open for Josefina Prosch solo and cristina Lei Rodriguez at Rocket projects is on my list.


Your Mama

February 27, 2005, 5:14 AM

all this art makes me want to kill myself. Smoke Gallery? do they sell Malboros?



February 27, 2005, 7:58 AM

frances swings!!!!



February 27, 2005, 8:09 AM

Just curious:

Is there no law to protect the public from being imposed upon by some huge ugly outdoor "sculpture" if it's on private land, even though the object is clearly meant for public notice? If the erection of the eyesore cannot be prohibited (which ought to be possible given sufficient public objection), can't the perpetrator(s) at least be fined heavily enough to be discouraged or dissuaded?



February 27, 2005, 8:52 AM

jack, i:m going to assume your joking. don be a dumbazz



February 27, 2005, 3:41 PM

Potato Whatever: guidelines. Assume community.

Jack: you'd figure that if public hostility could cause the removal of Richard Serra's Tilted Arc, it could take out a Britto. Alas, if bad taste were against the law, half of Miami would be unbuilt.

Additional item from the New Times: if anyone wants to take a shot at Carlos Suarez de Jesus, they're gonna have to come through me first, ya'heard?


david emley

February 27, 2005, 5:46 PM has a messegeboard which is trying to collect all the arts messegeboards in one place- a onestop place for arts information and news. Please try it out. The link is Use it or lose it.


yellow suit

February 27, 2005, 6:25 PM

perhaps carlos s's attacker was a jilted artist?
well, i am very glad he is safe because i happen to live in the area and was once assaulted as well by a crazy man on biscayne in braod daylight at the omni station.



February 27, 2005, 6:29 PM

Here's the money quote, from the "sculptor" himself:

"There's a very small group of people who don't understand and maybe don't appreciate pop art, [like] if I do a project with a designer like Nicole Miller, or if I've done a project with Absolut Vodka, or if I've done something for Pepsi-Cola, or if I design a watch for Swatch, or if I did a Movado watch," Britto continues. "It's like a small number of people [so] it doesn't mean so much. They say whatever they want to say, but the bottom line, I have millions of people out there who support my work, not only in South Florida but everywhere."

The denial or cluelessness is sad, of course, and the crass look-at-my-product-endorsements tack is tacky, but the bottom line IS that tolerance for, if not support of, po(o)p art outweighs opposition to it. Sigh.

By the way, who or what the hell is Nicole Miller?



February 27, 2005, 7:00 PM

"use it or lose it" David?

Looks like the usual junk site. My choice would be lose it.



February 27, 2005, 7:11 PM

Some info for you Jack. I know you are dying to find out.

"One of the first South Florida-based artists to combine artistic endeavors with commercial businesses was pop artist Romero Britto. The Brazilian-born artist got his commercial big break in the 1980s, when marketers of the Absolut vodka brand asked him to create an advertisement for its popular campaign featuring pop artists renditions of Absolut bottles. Since then, Britto has become somewhat of an art-making machine, creating between 40 and 60 pieces a year, he says. In addition to paintings and prints, Britto sells perfume, t-shirts and greeting cards, among other items, through his company Britto Central. The artist has also signed licensing agreements to lend his name and style to clothing by designer Nicole Miller, shoemaker Via Spiga and watchmakers Swatch and Movado. That segment of his business alone brings in revenues in the low millions according to Alina Shriver, Brittos vice president of licensing. In South Florida, Brittos work adorns billboards, the sides of buildings and even a restaurant Brittos in South Beachs Royal Palm Crowne Plaza. Dadeland malls owners commissioned a 45-foot tall sculpture that should be finished this fall."


that guy in the second to last row

February 27, 2005, 7:15 PM

yeah lets lose that site asap. It's making people hate art. You can't blame them after looking at that site. Jesus its bad. Who is this yellow suit chasing Carlos? Is that the same guy who sometimes wanders into openings dressed in the green lizard get up? Maybe they are related.



February 27, 2005, 7:51 PM

We seem to have accumulated a few quick shots from Frances Trombly fans.

Can anyone tell me why her stuff is any different from the great mass of vitiated post-minimal cutsiness we are plagued with already?



February 27, 2005, 8:52 PM

Normally I'd delete that artistregistry site with extreme prejudice, the commenters have taken him out so well that I think I'll leave it up. For additional hilarity check out David Emley's work. It's a style that "has collectively been referred to as 'Davism'." Like when comidienne Judy Tenuda founded a religion called "Judy-ism."



February 27, 2005, 8:54 PM

Thanks, Oldpro, but that's far more Britto data than I wanted. I once walked into his Lincoln Road store, which feels like an expensive car dealership, just to gawk at the prices. I felt very weird in there, though, and the unctuous staff person who immediately accosted me didn't help my squeamishness. The prices are unbelievably high, yet they evidently sell the stuff, which proves that P.T. Barnum was more or less right: There IS a sucker born every minute. I'm glad I'm not an artist, though. It's enough to make one suicidal.



February 27, 2005, 8:57 PM

Don't be such a snob, Franklin. This Emley guy has MOCA solo show written all over him. You just wait.



February 27, 2005, 8:59 PM

Sorry about the overload, Jack. I felt that you had to know.

You are right not to take off the Davism ref, Franklin. Take a look, everybody.



February 27, 2005, 9:01 PM

Damn, Jack. Why did you have to say that?

Next thing we know we will see a picture of him with "MOCA SOLO SHOW" written all over him.



February 27, 2005, 11:44 PM

Well, the Norton at WPB has had all week to respond to my e-mail of complaint for their hiked-up entry fee, and it hasn't happened. I'm not exactly surprised. They only really had two options: Either apologize and send me a free-entry pass for my next visit, or blow me off. Trying to justify their policy to me would have been wasted effort. As I told them, in future I will be much more wary and will not give them the benefit of the doubt. I don't imagine they're concerned, but I do wish art institutions would take better care of their image, if only out of self-respect.

And no, I'm not just talking about the Norton. The same applies to MAM, MOCA, the Bass and the Lowe, even if for different reasons and to different degrees. In some instances it may just be bad judgment, not to say stupidity, but in others it's rather worse than that.



February 28, 2005, 12:07 AM

#14 and #15: The Goldman's Warehouse is something I don' t mind going back to again, and I think I will go back there next weekend. I thank to those who mentioned it in this blog. I can write what's so good about the show and how so, but if I do, things I am supposed to be doing don't get done today, for my writing will be very long. So I would jokingly say that it was "really good." (That's how Frances Trombly fans would review a show, right?)

Jack's #26: I did not know it spells Poop art. I am learning something new everyday.

Oldpro's comment #28 is odd because I don't see his opinion in it. Knowing his writing skills, I know he can write things with his opinion ruled out, but it's a bore like that in this blog situation. Without his absolute conviction attitude, the writing is like a fart.

According to a friend of mine who had worked with Romero Britto closely, Britto is an exceptionally talented man. His work is not the type of thing I like, though. The stupidity is not intense enough for me to like it. Intense stupidity is hard to come by.



February 28, 2005, 12:29 AM

That's funny, Momoko.

I am a charter member of the old farts club, so I might as well write like one.

Anyway, the reason you didn't see any opinion in it was because I didn't write it. It was just something I copied from a web site to harass Jack with.

Therefore I can I can easily bear your fart comparison with equinamity.

Do write something about the Olitski show. I am very interested in everyone's opinions.



February 28, 2005, 2:22 AM

In regards to Oldpro's question in comment #30, Frances' exhibition is as good as it is for a number of reasons. The pieces she chose to include in her show are the throw away kind of paper products one might see at the end of a birthday party (balloons, wrapping paper, etc.). Because she has decided to hand weave all these items puts a sort of a bizarre spin on the objects, a grand motherly, abject love. It's almost like someone gave all the love in the world into something that will only be used for an afternoon then be discarded, which is ironic because these objects seem to be such goofy festive things. The installation of the works is also well done as the pieces are not arranged as art pieces would generally be at an exhibition. They are arranged to look discarded as in an aftermath kind of way. The craftsmanship of the pieces is excellent, and it is overwhelming to think of the thousands of hours she must have spent making these pieces. Go see it for yourself, if you like. I recommend it.



February 28, 2005, 2:40 AM

Thank you, Ajax, for the good explanation for Frances' exhibition.


kenneth cohen

February 28, 2005, 3:01 AM

Trombly work is good not because its labor intensive,,, but because its intelligent work. There may have been more risks she could have taken, but I feel her work will go where it needs to in the future. Moreover the work isnt under the tragically hip spell that most post basel local art is under.



February 28, 2005, 4:17 AM

Momoko, when you have time, do write your thoughts on the Goldman show. It should be interesting to have your opinion.

As for Britto, I didn't mean he has no talent; the question is what kind or for what. He has a talent for commercial graphics of a very particular sort--trite, simplistic, colorful, relentlessly "positive" and completely safe. It's all rather crude and infantile, but there's clearly a market for it, which is fine. He's not immensely stupid; he's rich and famous, and if nothing else he knows marketing, or employs people who do. What IS immensely stupid is paying anything resembling serious money for his work, even originals, let alone the "limited edition" stuff.



February 28, 2005, 4:26 AM

Yeah jack, I think Momoko ought to reconsider. I think it is intensly stupid enough to qualify for her consideration.

Ajax & Kenneth. Thanks for the review. I didn't realize they were handwoven. That certainly is a point for the anit-jpeg folks (are you there, Potato?).

However I'm not at all sure i would quite equate "It's almost like someone gave all the love in the world into something that will only be used for an afternoon then be discarded", heart-rending though that may be, with art as such. But to each his own.



February 28, 2005, 5:22 AM

yeah, i 'm here., but not for much longer; i'm starting to get on my own nerves. my comment towards jack above was particularly useless. actually i had a point, but it was poorly expressed, even by my standards........... i was trying to get jack to talk a little more about the topic of "public art" in that specific context.

If i read the new times article correctly, the developer dude is going to build the parking garage, shopping mall, etc. he then wants to basically donate the garage to the city. it's his private land, and he can do whateve the hell he wants , including put an ass-ugly Britto sculpture on it. OK. SO.... if he donates the parking lot to the city, the Art in Public Places (AIPP?) kicks in, and now the art has to be something the AIPP committee approves. SO.... the AIPP law could effectively make it impossible for him to donate the lot (Actually it's a garage, not a lot), so the city looses out. is that basically correct?

I've come to dislike Britto's work as much as the next art snob, but let's recognize that that's what we are. Britto appeals to art-ignorant people. I'd bet his work gets lots of people to look at other art, and eventually lets' them realize that it, itself, is lame. But most people will remain art-ignorant, and will enjoy the Britto. Kids love britto. Contrary to oldpro (who, in like five years of posting, has yet still to be right about a single solitary thing!!), dogs, do, in fact, LIKE BRITTO.

Look, if that sculpture goes up, i'm going to be driving by it twice a day. nobody has more of a right to comlain about it then me. there are a million things that would be better in that spot. but if people like it, what are we to say? Would we really want to put a Richard Serra sculpture there? Oh shit, that's right, you guys hate contempory art. OK, so what big-assed sculpture would you guys like to see at 5th and Alton?

(oldpro~ yes, you can't tell they're hand-woven on the internet, and -geez- that's important to the meaning! how about that. but think about painting - painting is about the brushstrokes; in 99% of jpegs you can't see the brushstrokes, so you have no idea, in effect, how the painter made the painting. doesn't that make a difference??!?!?)



February 28, 2005, 5:27 AM

Alesh and Franklin, I changed web hosts almost two years ago now. This host uses a Windows server. My previous host used a Unix server. When I was using the Unix server I had working calendar software. That software doesn't work on a Windows server, unfortunately. I've tried to find something else economical that works but, I haven't.

If you recall that calendar, it was designed so that galleries could post their own listings with a login. Replacement software would cost about $60 or more. That's just too much to pay for me. It would be nice for something to work since my inbox is always overflowing! :-)



February 28, 2005, 8:03 AM

Yes, Potato, come to think of it, I imagine dogs do like Britto sculptures.

I don't think not liking Britto's public sculpture is a snob thing. They are hideous. Nothing to do with snobbism.

In the Trombly work the whole point (unfortunately) resides in the fact that they are excruciating to make. How well they are made, apart from simple craft precision, is unimportant, or beside the point.

The fact that paintings are painted, on the other hand, is trivial. How well they are painted is what counts.

So your analogy is just about 180 degrees off.

Of course seeing the brushstrokes is important in evaluating a painting. All I ever said (and I repeat it here for about the 10th time) was that you can tell a lot about a painting by looking at a decent reproduction of it.



February 28, 2005, 8:16 AM

It's late and I need to get to bed, but as far as I'm concerned, the issue is not when something was made, but how good it is. I have no problem with contemporary as such. Old or new, it's either worthwhile work or it isn't. Period.


h3ad of//potat3/oz

February 28, 2005, 8:21 AM


now you've arrived at a level of absurdity i usually reserve for myself. i'm an occasional painter, but a frequent consumer of painting... and the thing that makes painting enjoyable for me is looking at it from across the room and getting a sense of the composition, then coming close to examine the surface texture, brushstrokes, and trying to reconstruct how the artist created the work. withouth that duality, i may as well be looking at an image that was created in a computer; not just reproduced in one.

the fact that i have to expalin this to a PAINTER is baffling. perhaps this has something to do with why your paintings are unacceptable?


s3ven potatoez/

February 28, 2005, 8:27 AM

jack~~~but something can be "worthwile" if seen once, but not stand up to the test of time. something can be "worthwile" to your well-honed taste, but crap to the ignorant 99% of the rest of us. Criticizing sticker art at the MAM is one thing, but if 100% of the people have to look at something, isn't their aesthetic opinion worth something?

you always say everyone is free to make up their own mind. you are free to hate Britto. But would you really want to force something you thought was great on everyone if you knew they would dislike it? IF it were up to you, what would you put in place at 5th and Alton?



February 28, 2005, 9:12 AM

C'mon, Potato, you are either as dense as a bowling ball or you are trying to put me on again.

Either way, it's a bore.



February 28, 2005, 5:35 PM

I plan to go back to the Goldman show on Sunday to see and write about it. Since I did not find much of stupidity in the show, I must warn you that funniess you occatioally find in my writings may not be expected, though.

I am more ready to write about Gaijin Calligraphy of Franklin than the Goldman's, but for some reason he is not sharing it with us. He might be trying to be wise, or something.



February 28, 2005, 7:21 PM

My comment #21 was a rather idle and more or less rhetorical question. If some developer builds and owns a mall on his land, he can certainly decorate it as he likes, whether with Britto palm trees or some fountain or other. I was mainly thinking about my very negative reaction (as in, appalled) to the Dadeland Station Britto. The ridiculous ugliness of the thing, magnified by its huge scale, struck me as an imposition and an affront. It may be perfectly legal, but it reflects seriously arrested taste and bad judgment. No matter how much the developer loves it, that does not mean he should assume the public will also. It's the sort of artifact that would make sense on the grounds of Michael Jackson's Neverland estate, but I don't want it looming over me while I go shopping.

I don't really care to get into the issue of public art, because to me art is a personal matter between me and the work. The criteria for public art are different, because it should have mass appeal, and something like politics inevitably comes into play. Ideally there would be suitable people overseeing or supervising public art projects, but again, I don't care to delve into that arena. It certainly shouldn't be up to me what might go up at 5th and Alton, but it seems the City of Miami Beach (or suitable people consulted by the City) should have some say or input into the matter. It's not so much telling the developer what he has to erect, but being able to object to something inappropriate. Still, as Oldpro noted, palm trees are harmless enough, especially in that setting--though I'd prefer real ones.



February 28, 2005, 7:38 PM

Also, as Potato astutely observed, the dogs will like it. They will be tugging on the leash to get there.



March 1, 2005, 12:13 AM

actually, buttering me up will get you nowhere.

what if it turns out (as I'm sure it does) that most people like Britto?



March 1, 2005, 12:15 AM

Then that's how it turns out. So what?



March 1, 2005, 4:16 AM

Oldpro, you are not obligated to give psychotherapy to Potato especially when you are not licensed to do so.



March 1, 2005, 4:33 AM

You're right, Momoko. An exercise in futility.



Other Projects


Design and content ©2003-2022 Franklin Einspruch except where otherwise noted