Thursday, December 20, 2012

Artist Marcus Jansen wins 5th Semiannual Dave Bown Projects competition -- posted by Florida Fine Art Blog

Founded in 2005, the Dave Bown Projects focuses on advancing the field of visual arts by conducting research, buying works of art for the Collection of Dave Bown Projects, and providing unrestricted monetary awards to visual artists. Past competitions have featured Andy Warhol, Frank Stella and other artists of historical significance whose works converge thematically because of their diverse use of color and geometry. Many of the artists who compete in the online project have exhibited at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Whitney Museum of American Art, Tate Britain (Turner Prize recipients), the Venice Biennale and other prestigious museums and art institutes worldwide.

The 5th Semiannual Competition was curated by Karl Hecksher (owner of K5 Editions, New York), Andrea Karnes (Curator at the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth), and Mary Kate O’Hare (Curator of American Art at the Newark Museum) from submissions received from artists from over 30 countries. The work of 25 visual artists was juried by the panel into the online exhibition. A cash prize of $10,000 was awarded to winner Marcus Jansen, with Jesse Morgan Barnett, James Clar, Nichole Maury, Flavia Ribeiro, and Zimoun each receiving $1,000.

Marcus Jansen website
Dave Bown Projects website
My Interview with Marcus here
Marcus is one of my favorite artists and its great to see his work getting the recognition it deserves. Marcus also had a love for Purvis Young and you can even see Purvis' influence in Marcus' work.  If you are looking for contemporary work by an up and coming artist I would strongly suggest purchasing Marcus work now.  His prices are still low and he has smaller pieces that are every bit as good as the larger work.  GL

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Frederic Remington And Florida’s Cracker Cowboys -- posted by Florida Fine Art Blog

 Image: Remington, Frederic, "A Cracker Cowboy." 
Publication by Harper & Brothers, 1895

Frederic Remington And Florida’s Cracker Cowboys
Cowboys & Indians Magazine
By Dana Joseph

When Frederic Remington first encountered Florida’s “cracker” cowboys while on assignment for Harper’s magazine in 1895, he couldn’t have imagined them as future guardians of some of the state’s most important resources. In fact, he didn’t quite know what to make of them at all.

With his artist’s eye, Remington immediately observed that unlike Western cowboys — with their horned saddles, ropes, and lariats used to work longhorns in a landscape of grassy plains and brush — these Florida “cow hunters” rode “[hornless] McClellan saddles, with saddle-bags, and guns tied on before. The only things they did which were conventional were to tie their ponies up by the head in brutal disregard, and then get drunk in about fifteen minutes.” From what Remington could see, “while some of the tail feathers were the same, [the Florida cowboys] would easily classify as new birds.”

“Visiting the lawless gunslinging town of Arcadia in 1895 didn’t exactly present Remington with a complete picture of ‘cracker’ culture. For each drunken ranger he met, there were dozens of noble and sober pioneers quietly persevering with their families throughout the frontier.”

“When Remington arrived in Florida, his romanticized view of the Old West must have been jostled by the rawness he confronted in the Old South. Even though ranching reached Florida years before it reached the West, visiting Arcadia in 1895 would have been like visiting Lincoln County, Nevada, two decades before, predating the civility Remington himself had experienced.”

Read the full article here 

This article confirms a few stories I had heard about Remington’s visit.  The way I heard it, and tell it often, the artist came looking for cowboys, like the ones he knew in the west, only to be disappointed in the “quality” of men he encountered here in Florida.   Remington cut his trip short and wrote his sister that; "there are no cowboys here, only criminals and scoundrels."   

I tell that story along with others with the same theme whenever someone new to Florida is shocked by the level of corruption and depravity found here.  Yes Florida has always attracted the lost and desperate, those looking for a second chance or an easy buck.  From the Spanish looking for the fountain of youth to the blue hair retirees looking for a warm paradise to live out their last years, most come to start over.  And with them come the con-artists and criminals ready to feed off the naive and unaccustomed.  "And its always been this way", I always exclaim with pride.  GL

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Dallas Museum of Art drops admission fee -- posted by Florida Fine Art Blog

The Dallas Museum of Art will begin free general admission in January 2013. (Dallas Museum of Art)

Dallas Museum of Art drops admission fee

Studies Show Economic Impact of Art Funding - by Florida Fine Art Blog

Studies Show Economic Impact of Art Funding

Today I have three great articles about the positive impact art funding has on South Florida.

The first one come from the Sun Sentinel and is an interview with Randy Cohen, vice president of research and policy for Americans for the Arts, a Washington, DC-based nonprofit.  Mr. Cohen was here to speak to over 150 business and community leaders about his organizations new report, "The Arts and Economic Prosperity IV report".  

The Arts and Economic Prosperity IV report is considered to be the most comprehensive economic impact study of the nonprofit arts and culture industry ever conducted in the U.S. It was created by Americans for the Arts, the nation’s leading nonprofit organization for advancing the arts and arts education.

From the interview; "If you care about community and economic development, you can feel good about investing the arts. The arts are an industry, and not simply a luxury worth supporting in prosperous times but hard to justify when the economy is struggling. Right here in Broward County, the arts are a $230 million-per-year industry that supports 6,402 jobs and generates $22 million in local and state government revenue, our latest research shows. Nonprofit arts organizations in Broward spend $103 million per year on people, production and suppliers"

Sun Sentinel Article; "More arts, stronger economy, new research finds"
can be found here

The second one comes from the South Florida Business Journal.  This article talks about the same study but emphasizes the studies finding that arts and culture play an important role in attracting new businesses and workers to our community.  

From the article;  "Having a strong arts and culture community plays a very important role in our efforts to attract and grow companies in Broward County," said Bob Swindell, president and CEO of the Greater Fort Lauderdale Alliance. "Companies want to know that their employees will have a number of quality choices of cultural activities. Arts and culture in our community stands out as a real strength in our recruitment and retention efforts."

South Florida Business Journal;  "Broward arts groups contribute millions to economy" can be found here

The third article is about the positive impact Art Basel has on the surrounding counties and comes from  This story talks about the small but noticeable spill over into Broward Art Basel has caused.  And the need to further capitalize on the deluge of art lovers Art Basel brings into the area every December.

From the Article;  “Tourists definitely take advantage of Broward’s arts and culture when they fly in for Art Basel,” said Nikki Grossman, president of the Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention and Visitors Bureau. “There’s a small and even palpable bump -- about 1 percent increase -- in hotel bookings. But that’s a welcome bump for us. The Museum of Art Fort Lauderdale sees a foot-traffic spike and so do our restaurants and high-end hotels. Travelers want a broader experience out of Basel, and we give it.”;  "Art Basel casts its glow on Broward County" can be found here

The arts in Broward County, by the numbers

$230 million: economic impact in 2010
50 percent: growth in economic impact from 2005
$127 million: audience spending outside admission prices on meals, hotels, parking and more in 2010.
Source: Americans for the Arts, Broward County study released in 2012

Friday, December 7, 2012

Great Map for Art Week 2012 - posted by Florida Fine Art Blog

View Miami Art Map in a larger map

This is a great map I've been using to get around this week, Enjoy!  
Hint - I sent the map to my phone so I have it with me at all times.  GL

Monday, December 3, 2012

Glenn's Guide to Art Basel 2012 -- by Florida Fine Art Blog


Art Basel 2012  December 6th – 9th

The US economy may be recovering slowly yet this week the art world will once again descend on South Florida and spend/party like its 1999.  Economy be damned, its Art Basel Week!  Three cheers for the artwork, the parties, the music, the jetsetters, the weather, the food, the shopping and the enormous economic impact to South Florida. 

If ever there was a place and time to show the naysayers that public funding for the arts creates jobs and prosperity along with cultural richness for the whole community Art Basel - Miami is it.  Every restaurant and hotel is full, every venue booked. From the valets and waiters to the cabbies and shop owners no one who witnesses this week could deny the positive impact of art on South Florida.

This year I am going to spend most of this guide pointing out the new and alternative things to do during Art Basel.  While I still recommend going to the major fairs if you have never experienced Art Basel I feel my last two years guides (Found Here and Here) pretty well cover all the larger fairs.  Plus I have not spent enough time in the past covering all the music, parties and exciting public art projects that take place across the city.  Remember everything underlined is a link and each of these fairs has a wonderful website with tons of great information, more than I could ever include here.  As you chose which fairs you will attend I strongly recommend you study the fair websites to get the most out of the experience.

Much more after the fold

Knight Foundation to Donate $23 Million to Miami Arts Organizations - posted by Florida Fine Art Blog

 Miami is getting a historic influx of cash for the arts — and it’s not just coming from collectors in town for Art Basel Miami Beach. On Monday, the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation will officially announce plans to donate $23 million to arts and culture initiatives in South Florida. Grantees range from established institutions like the Wolfsonian Museum at Florida International University to grassroots organizations like the homegrown Borscht Film Festival.

Over the last six years, the Knight Foundation has donated $63 million to support the region’s cultural community. This latest gift will be divided into two parts: $14 million will go to established cultural venues while $9 million will go toward a continuing contest to fund small start-up-style arts projects called the Knight Arts Challenge.

Established organizations receiving a cut of the $14 million donation include the Miami City Ballet ($5 million), the Cleveland Orchestra ($2 million), and the Miami International Film Festival ($500,000). The Design and Architecture High School and the New World School of the Arts will also get $1 million to send students on cultural field trips to New York City and Europe.

The Knight Arts Challenge allows creative Floridians to submit an idea for enhancing the region’s arts offerings. The best ones receive funding as long as they pledge to match Knight’s contribution with their own fundraising. Previously selected initiatives are refreshingly quirky, and include Weird Miami Bus Tours led by artist Naomi Fischer and newly created art-book publishing house [NAME], which promotes the work of Miami artists nationally.

“Miami’s creativity is limitless, Knight Foundation’s arts initiative and its Knight Arts Challenge have acted as its conduit – pulling the best ideas out of the city’s most creative thinkers, and helping them flourish,” Dennis Scholl, the foundation’s vice president for the arts (and a prominent local collector), said in a statement. “In a truly creative town like Miami, everybody should be able to participate, to dream and to ultimately see their passions through to reality.”
Curious if your community could benefit from Knight’s largesse? The foundation concentrates its grant-giving activities in communities that had Knight-Ridder newspapers in 1991, the year founder James L. Knight died. Other major recipients include Detroit, which won a $19.25 million gift in October, and Philadelphia, which received $9 million in 2010. The foundation has been headquartered in Miami since 1990.
Julia Halperin

Knight Foundation to Donate $23 Million to Miami Arts Organizations | In the Air: Art News & Gossip |

Saturday, December 1, 2012

"Video of the Week" - Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry Documentary - by Florida Fine Art Blog

Trailer - Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry, a film by Alison Klayman

From the Official Film Website; 

Ai Weiwei is China's most famous international artist, and its most outspoken domestic critic. Against a backdrop of strict censorship and an unresponsive legal system, Ai expresses himself and organizes people through art and social media. In response, Chinese authorities have shut down his blog, beat him up, bulldozed his newly built studio, and held him in secret detention.

AI WEIWEI: NEVER SORRY is the inside story of a dissident for the digital age who inspires global audiences and blurs the boundaries of art and politics. First-time director Alison Klayman gained unprecedented access to Ai while working as a journalist in China. Her detailed portrait provides a nuanced exploration of contemporary China and one of its most compelling public figures.

Official Film Website found here

I highly recommend this film about a provocative and brave artist who is using art and media to prompt others to action.  GL

Ai Weiwei Book Features The Controversial Quotes Of China's Famous Dissident Artist - posted by Florida Fine Art Blog

Ai Weiwei Book Features The Controversial Quotes of China's Famous Dissident Artist

Article found on The Huffington Post
by Katherine Brooks

In "Weiwei-isms," we see Ai Weiwei at his best; the upcoming pocket-sized account on Princeton University Press features nearly 150 pages of the Chinese artist's infamously short quips, collected from tweets, articles and interviews. "Twitter is my city," the dissident artist famously declared in an interview with Foreign Policy earlier this year. "I can talk to anybody I want to. And anybody who wants to talk to me will get my response."

Ai has become quite accustomed to broadcasting his thoughts on democracy, human rights and artistic freedom on social media under the humble handle, @aiww. Tweeting on average about seven or eight times a day, as well as keeping his blog active with videos and posts, Ai saturates the net with his succinct yet eloquent views. With over 180,000 followers, he might as well be mayor of his boundless city.

"Weiwei-isms" is modeled after "The Little Red Book," a collection of pithy quotes by Mao Tse-Tung. The little black book tips its hat to the former Chinese leader's laconic prose when Weiwei jokes, "Chairman Mao was the first in the world to use Twitter. All his quotations are within 140 words."
Weiwei's appreciation of virtual communication makes sense, given that he was jailed for 81 days after actively voicing his opposition to the Chinese government in 2011. Though he was officially detained for "economic crimes," Weiwei maintains that authorities were against his openly provocative protests of Communist leadership, which took the form of art exhibits, demonstrations and "citizen's investigations." The Internet community is simply a safer place for the defiant artist to continue his activism, as thorny and guarded as the Chinese web might be. But it's also a platform on which he thrives, a fact that "Weiwei-isms" isn't shy to point out.

Article found here

The more I learn about this brave artist the more I like.  I recently watched a great documentary about Ai Weiwei and I strongly recommend it; 'Ai Weiwei, Never Sorry'.  GL

George Bellows at the Metropolitan Museum of Art - posted by Florida Fine Art Blog

George Bellows at the Metropolitan Museum of Art
New York, 28 November 2012, Art Media Agency (AMA).

From 15 November 2012 to 18 February 2013 will be held the first comprehensive retrospective, in nearly half a century, of American artist George Bellows (1882-1925) at the MET. His famous and powerful depictions of boxing matches and scenes of New York City as well as painted city landscapes, seascapes, war scenes and portraits will be exhibited. The total of the works exhibited is 120 and the exhibition is the first retrospective of the artist’s career since 1966.

The exhibition was made possible thanks to the Peter Sharp Foundation. It was organised by the National Gallery of Art, Washington, in association with the Metropolitan Museum of Art , New York, and the Royal Academy of Arts, London.
Even though he died young (42 years old) he was one of the most acclaimed artists of his generation. Paintings and prints by Bellows are part of the collections of major American art museums such as the National Gallery of Art in Washington, the Memorial Art Gallery of the University of Rochester, in Rochester New York, the Whitney and the Museum of Modern Art in New York, and the Hyde Collection, in Glens Falls, New York.

Link to Article here

One of my Favorite artists, George Bellows is also part of a group show currently at the Museum of Art - Fort Lauderdale.  'Return to the Ashcan' is a group show of the famous Ashcan artists that will be on view on the Musem's Glackens Galleries. George Luks, William Glackens, John Sloan, Everett Shinn, Guy Pène du Bois and of course George Bellows were leaders of the group and their works are included in this stunning exhibition of paintings and works on paper.  The show runs from October 20, 2012 until February 24, 2013.  GL

More on 'Return to the Ashcan' here

MOCA Cleveland Debuts 'Hexagon,' A Multimillion Dollar Art Hub - posted by Florida Fine Art Blog

MOCA Cleveland Debuts "Hexagon", A Multimillion Dollar Art Hub, To The Public

Article from The Huffington Post
The Museum of Contemporary Art Cleveland has opened its new and very expensive doors to the public today. The 27.3 million dollar "Hexagon," as its referred to officially became the shiniest and most recent addition to one of the highest concentrated districts of museums and cultural organizations in the United States.
The 34,000-square-foot glass structure, designed by Iranian-born and London-based architect Farshid Moussavi, celebrated its opening with an inaugural exhibition titled "Inside Out and from the Ground Up." The show, which opened free to the public this afternoon, features the work of 16 international artists versed in sculpture, painting and sound installations. Louise Bourgeois, Gordon Matta-Clark, David Altmejd, and Walead Beshty are a few of the artists on the docket.

Pictures and more here