Tag Archives: pop art

Kenny Scharf at Paul Kasmin

I attended the opening of Kenny Scharf’s Naturafutura and Three Dozen! at the Paul Kasmin Gallery. I’ve gotten to know Kenny over the past two years from his Cosmic Cavern parties to his show at The Hole. His work is vibrant and fun and expertly executed. Naturafutura is a new series of large-scale paintings inspired by his time spent in Brazil. And with donuts being my favorite food, I obviously love Three Dozen! I also enjoyed the donuts that we could eat – I chose the pink one. Delicious.

Naturafutura and Three Dozen! will be on view January 27th through February 26, 2011 at Paul Kasmin 293 Tenth Avenue and 511 W. 27th Street respectively. Here are some photos from the night (though I unfortunately didn’t get any of the man of the night):


Joe and Laura
Joe Grillo and Laura Grant in front of Swamp Style, 2010
Sam and Erin
Sam Gutman and Erin Kennedy in front of Oil Painting, 2010
Donuts in Space (and in my eventually in my belly)
DJ Lino playing the hot jamz at the afterparty
The dance party begins

All in all, it was a great night to celebrate the work of a very talented man, Kenny Scharf.


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Exit Through the Gift Shop

Banksy Exit Through the Gift Shop

As anyone knows, Style Wars is the ultimate film about graffiti. It gives an inside scoop to the art that came from the streets and lived on the streets. 20 years later, in a very different world, Exit Through the Gift Shop illuminates the world of street art’s most famous players. At first, I felt excitement about the underground art world but that feeling quickly dissipated as I realized that this film was just about notoriety, manipulation and commercialization.

With such huge names as Invader, Shepard Fairey, Ron English, and, of course, the famed Banksy, I did not expect the film to take such a drastic turn as to highlight the birth of Mr. Brainwash – an overnight sensation. Looking back, it seemed like a normal evolution and – not knowing anything about it before watching – maybe I was duped into thinking that it was a real documentary.

I must say that my jaw dropped halfway through the film when – SPOILER ALERT – it is revealed that the crazy, French, “street-art documentarian,” Thierry Guetta is Mr. Brainwash. How could it be that this man is Mr. Brainwash?

While in Miami for Art Basel this year, I saw Mr. Brainwash’s work Under Construction – from a distance – in a cab. My friends groaned that Mr. Brainwash was a poser and that his art was bad and fake. I had never seen his work before and based on the size and scale and audacity of this work, I assumed – regardless of the caliber of the work – it had to be someone who like street artist Banksy said had spent “years perfecting their craft” and “finding their style.”

It comes to be known – or maybe not known – that Mr. Brainwash is an art piece masterminded by Banksy. How else would someone draw 4,000 people to their first show and produce $1 million dollars in sales? But the real question to ask yourself is – Does Thierry Guetta know that he is just Banksy’s pawn? Further, do you think that Thierry Guetta really cares if he’s being used as along as he is cashing in? Like he said at the end, “Life is like chess and I don’t know how to play chess.”

All in all, I found Exit Through the Gift Shop to be a thrilling, jaw-dropping, and thoroughly entertaining film. I wonder when/where we’ll see Mr. Brainwash next…

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My week with Dearraindrop

In October 2010, my friends Joe Grillo, Laura Grant, and Owen Osborn of the artist collective Dearraindrop along with Pop Art legend, Kenny Scharf had a show at The Hole Gallery in New York City. The Hole is a new gallery in Soho run by Kathy Grayson and Meghan Coleman – gallerinas extraordinaire, who previously worked with Jeffrey Deitch at Deitch Projects – and wanted to fill the “hole” in the downtown art scene in NYC.

I had the wonderful opportunity to spend the week at The Hole as they got ready for the show aptly titled, Hot Glue Hullabaloo (for the amount of hot glue used to create Cosmic Cavern by Kenny Scharf and the “junk sculptures” by Joe Grillo).

Here is my week in photos:

Joe Grillo Painting

My week starts with Joe Grillo painting.

Laura Grant and Owen Osborn

Laura Grant and Owen Osborn get ready to install the trigger synthesizers with gourd speakers and the guitars.

Tea Party LL Cool J Contest Next Door

Tea Party LL Cool J Contest Next Door

Found this note from Owen in the morning: Went to Philadelphia. Back for lunch.

Synthesizers and Gourds

When Owen returned, we installed the synthesizers and gourds.


Then we installed the guitars.


The next day, we put everything in place for the opening.

Kenny Scharf spray-painting

Kenny Scharf spray paints.

Laura Grant

Laura Grant wearing her own hand-made dress, standing in front of her painting.

Joe Grillo in Cosmic Cavern

Joe in the Cosmic Cavern.

Owen Osborn with Kaleidoloops

Owen toting around his Kaleidoloops.

Meghan Coleman and Kathy Grayson

The Hole Gallery owners, Meghan Coleman and Kathy Grayson.

Lady Miss Kier

Lady Miss Kier plays the guitar.

Scott Brewster

Hole gallerist, Scott Brewster, wearing a Dearraindrop hoodie.

Maria Kucinski, Joe Grillo, Laura Grant at Hot Glue Hullabaloo opening

All in all, I had an amazing time working with these talented artists on an awesome and fun show.

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