Friday, October 13, 2017

Odd Beauty and the Steampunk Abbess

I was fortunate to meet artist Paige Gardner, steampunk costume designer, at the Southampton Arts Center show. 
Paige was modeling a creation entitled Abbey.
Paige creates wearable works of art by repurposing found and salvaged material. In this costume, elements were salvaged from the ruins of the Birmingham, Alabama hurricane. The "stained glass" in her head gear, mask and shoulder epaulets are composed of pages from a coloring book. She creates freehand, assembling each costume sans machine, with scissors, glue, safety pins and tape. 

You are drawn in by the costume's drama and beauty. Closer examination reveals a subtext of menace and power. "Odd Beauty" indeed, Paige is the perfect Mistress of Ceremonies for this show.

Curated by Art Donovan
Presented by Amy Kerwin
Photo by Amy Kerwin
"Beginning with the re-imagined, visual language of the 19th Century Victorian Era, Steampunk now counts its inspirations as far back as the mechanical drawings of Leonardo da Vinci to the bold, streamlined locomotives of Raymond  Lowey. But what gives this art form its singular identity is the artists' visual and cultural fascination with mechanical, gear-driven technologies of the past. This exhibition presents works from the most notable Steampunk artist and designers in the field and features visual art, technologies, and contraptions extraordinaire, all of which richly illustrate the need for a messy vitality which allows the imagination to soar." Art Donovan, Curator Odd Beauty: The Techo-Eccentric World of Steampunk
The gallery is filled with intricate curiosities, beautiful and unique. The works are so interesting, I especially loved the Steampunk Cicada. More photos of the show are HERE
Hellhound by Stephen J. Smith
Steampunk Butterfly by Daniel Proulx
Steampunk Cicada by Daniel Proulx
Sculpture by Todd Sloane

Southampton Arts Center
Through November 12,  2017

Artists include Tom Banwell, David Barnett, Mike Cochran, Ian Crichton, Art Donovan, Dave Duros, Steve Erenberg, Cameron Forrest, Paige Gardner, Eric Freitas, Vianney Halter, Steve La Riccia, Vincent Mattina, Clayton Orehek, Daniel Proulx, Saxon Reynolds, Filip Sawczuk, Todd Sloane, Stephan J. Smith, and Sam van Olffen.
Costume: “Abbey” by Paige Gardner 

The headpiece lights up! 

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Surreal Life

Katy Perry, Witness
I bought tickets to a Katy Perry concert as an anniversary present for Hugh months ago. Tickets to the Witness Tour at The Garden. Woot! The day of the concert, I told a business friend that we were going and he started laughing. He wanted to know whose idea it was. Well, um, actually Hugh is the bigger KP fan between the two of us, but I wanted to see her perform too. Why was he laughing? He wouldn't say. My friend has two young daughters; the reason for his mirth. Hugh and I must be the only ones who didn't know that hordes of pre-teen girls adore Katy Perry. The girls are on to something here. The concert was arguably the best that I have ever seen. Katy Perry is not only a gifted composer with an incredible voice, she is also a performance artist extraordinaire. 
Please allow me to digress. I have been reading An Exquisite Corpse by Helen A. Harrison. The premise is a murder mystery which includes famous Surrealist artists as the book's central characters. Harrison is the Director of the Pollock-Krasner House in East Hampton, so she knows her way around art history. The murder is fiction, but characterizations are based on real people. I found myself looking up the artist's works, as I was drawn into the plot. The Exquisite Corpse in the title refers to a Surrealist drawing game called Cadaver Exquis where a folded piece of paper is passed from player to player, each one adding the part of a body with only the leading edge of the previous body part as a guide. The resulting bizarre compilation delighted the artist participants.
Exquisite Corpse (Cadavre exquis) 1928
Man Ray, Max Morise, André Breton, Yves Tanguy

 The concert stage lit up and I gasped.
Are you feeling the Surrealist vibe?
Le Faux Miroir (The False Mirror)
 by Rene Magritte, 1928 via
I think Man Ray would have appreciated the set for I Kissed A Girl..
Observatory Time - The Lovers, Man Ray 1934
Gala Éluard by Max Ernst 1924
oil on canvas, 32 x 25 3/4in
We're all just looking for connection
Yeah, we all want to be seen
I'm looking for someone who speaks my language
Someone to ride this ride with me
Can I get a witness? (Witness)
Will you be my witness" (Witness)
I'm just looking for a witness in all of this
Looking for a witness to get through this (through this, through this, through this)

Will you be my witness?
Could you be the one that speaks for me?
Will you be my witness?

from Witness by Katy Perry/Ali Payami/Max Martin/Savan Harish Kotecha

Saturday, September 30, 2017

Under the Montauk Moon

I recently had the opportunity to attend the Sag Harbor American Music Festival. It was a beautiful weekend to walk around town and sample the musical bounty of the East End. The festival stages performers throughout the town. Artists perform at venues from the unusual to the sublime, the dock of Schiavoni's Grocery to the Bay Street Theater. Musicians are everywhere. I had never visited the Breakwater Yacht club, so a stop at the stage there was my chance to have a look. A band was rocking' on the balcony. People were dancing along the waterfront. The band, Joe Delia and the Thieves were definite crowd pleasers. 
My video here
Joe Delia and Thieves at the Breakwater Yacht Club
photograph by Lori Hawkins 
In the traditions of Bob Dylan and Bruce Springsteen, Delia's "Under the Montauk Moon" is the ultimate local anthem. Totally love this song.
Under the Montauk Moon
Joe Delia and Thieves
2013
Under the Montauk Moon 
(Aimless and Immortal by the Sea)

A chilly wind comes roarin'
Down a mid-October night
They boarded up the sidewalks
And turned out all the lights
So I Drove right past old Shagwong
Last call at Liars Saloon
Three guys outside lookin' for a fight
Tonight, Under the Montauk Moon
Surfers down at East Deck
Still waiting for a swell
Harleys revvin' East on 27
Like they're headed straight to hell
And the locals hate all the citiots
Who come out in droves by June
The hand that feeds them really feels the bite
Tonight, Under the Montauk Moon
Baby, you're all that I need
Our Love is holding the key
Baby You're all that I want
Aimless and Immortal by the Sea
The Winter's gonna be a cold one
They say the worst is yet to come
People stockin up their pantries, and loadin' up their guns
But Darkness will break and the sun will shine
and not a minute soon
Brother Daniel will be drumming with all this might
Tonight, Under the Montauk Moon 
Baby, you're all that I need
Our Love is holding the key
Baby,You're all that I want
Aimless and Immortal by the Sea
Hawaiian Ed sits on a bench looking vacant
He plays his ukulele well
then some wealthy socialite comes by
but it's very hard to tell
If she's really from old money
or if her pedigree
Is just a game she plays for kicks
To get her drinks and dinner free
Main street's cold and empty now
Not a soul around
Just the ghost of Andy Warhol
Acting like he owns the town
And there ain't no twenty-somethings listenin' to
no Memory Motel tune
not a living soul in sight
Tonight, Under the Montauk Moon
Under the Montauk Moon
Under the Montauk Moon 
Aimless and Immortal by the Sea

Joe Delia © 2010
Dedicated to the people of Montauk.
Inspired by Winters in Montauk and a line written by PJ--
“Aimless and Immortal by the Sea”
2011
Smoke and Mirrors
Moonlit surf by James Katsipis
A selection of local artists including Joe Delia's "Over the Montauk Moon"

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Annie Cooper Boyd Still Inspires

ACROSS TIME: Contemporary Reflections on the Life and Art of Annie Cooper Boyd and the Sag Harbor Experience is on currently on view at the Sag Harbor Historical Society.
Sag Harbor resident, Annie Cooper Boyd (1864-1944) was an artist, diarist and entrepreneur. I've written about Annie before. To those who seek her, Annie Cooper Boyd inspires endless inspiration.  
Annie Cooper Boyd watercolor
Annie Cooper Boyd collection photo and art by Carolyn Hallock

"Across Time" represents a collaboration between the Pierson High School Visual Arts Program, the John Jermain Memorial Library and the Historical Society. Annie Cooper Boyd source material is on display along with student art inspired by Annie's story and commonality of experience. Students were able to examine Annie's diaries, photographs and paintings. During their research they would have discovered Annie's painting of the North Haven Bridge, now the LCpl. Jordan C. Haerter Veteran's Memorial Bridge.
North Haven Bridge by Annie Cooper Boyd
Annie would have ridden her horse over this bridge to Long Beach. The bridge is more substantial today, but the view towards North Haven and the harbor feels much the same as it did in Annie's day. Below, artist, Leigh Hatfield, imagines Annie and her horse at Long Beach. 
Annie often rode out to area beaches on her horse, "Jenny"
by Leigh Hatfield
 
Upstairs bedroom with dormer wall painted by Annie
Nearly two dozen Pierson student artists contributed to "Across Time", I've only included a small sample of their wonderful work here. The exhibit is up until October 15th.  Make sure to visit the second floor bedroom while you're there.
Long Beach by Annie Cooper Boyd
Annie isn't the only one who loves to visit Long Beach. It inspires Hugh and I as well. I love picturing my feet walking where her feet have trod.
Beach Walk by Hugh Gallagher
Sailing School off Short Beach by Gail Gallagher

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Cinema Summer

I was recalling my last walk down Main Street before the Cinema fire. I had been admiring the neon sign, as always. Thinking of taking a photo, I reach into my bag for the phone. I stop. How many times will I photograph the same thing? Just look. Observe. Admire. The landmark sign gave me a sense of belonging. My town. My Cinema. My community where I walk to shopping, dinner, church or the movie theater. It is still that community, but we miss our sign, our beacon of home. 
Express-News and Corrector, Thursday May 28, 1936
Annette Hinkle's new book, Sag Harbor, 100 Years of Film in the Village tells the story of Sag Harbor's theater and cinema community. Our Sag Harbor Cinema had its Gala open Wednesday, June 3, 1936 at 8:30 pm. Isn't it funny? I don't think of people in 1936 going to a theater Gala at 8:30 at night on a Wednesday night. I think of them going to bed when the sun goes down because they are up at dawn baking bread or something like that. No, they were out for the evening viewing Shirley Temple as an adorable orphan (of course!) being rescued by a bachelor lighthouse keeper who fights to keep custody of the little angel. They tap dance their way to a happy ending. Hinkle interviews local residents for anecdotes, ransacks photo collections and includes theatrical asides. The book is a gem. I can't wait for Book Two.
Author, Annette Hinkle
Book Signing at Sylvester and Co.
Since the spring we've been in fund raising mode. We have a plan for a new Cinema Arts Center, keeping the classic design and restoring and recreating a better interior. We only need to raise the funds to complete the purchase of the property from the Cinema's owner of 38 years by year's end.
The site is ready. 
Shops are reopening on Main Street.
Matta was the first to reopen followed by Sagtown coffee. Matta hosted a show by artist, Erica Lynn-Huberty of works repurposing salvaged smoke and water "seasoned" fabric from Matta.  Huberty has one of these works in the upcoming Paddle8 Art Auction for the Cinema. It is currently on display at Estia's with 37 other works that have been donated to raise funds for the Cinema.
Since its celebrity appearance at the Big Tent Party, the SIGN has made a few cameo appearances. In the instance below, at a private screening benefit at a private residence. 
photo by April Gornik
During this fundraising process so many people have volunteered their time and given their treasure. This week the Cinema's eBay for Charity auction went live. I am amazed at the VIPs who have donated the gift of their time to raise funds for the Cinema.
Concert tickets with meet and greet with Billy Joel
A tour of the Today Show studios with Matt Lauer 
An hour hitting tennis balls with John McEnroe
Lunch with Morgan Spurlock
Tea for 6 with Julie Andrews
Tickets to Conan in L.A.
A walk-on role in Martin Scorcese's next film
Menu planning with Katie Lee
Lunch and Tour with eBay CEO Devin Wenig 

If this is not enough fabulousness there is a South African Safari and stay in Provence and much MORE to bid on. Do check out the list. So many of the experiences are really priceless. I have my items picked out if I win Powerball tonight ;)
The summer's end will culminate in a Block Party on Sunday, September 10th at Estia's Little Kitchen and live auction of art currently previewing on Paddle8. I'm hoping The Sign will attend.
Block Party Information HERE
All of the drum beating, begging and cajoling for money will end as soon as $8 million is raised or 12/31/17 occurs. Then... I hope.... if the efforts succeeds, we can get the rebuilding started and our Sag Harbor Cinema sign back where it belongs.

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