Photography & Art

No Longer Empty – From Courthouse to Art Gallery and Beyond

Sandra Bertrand

Thanks to No Longer Empty, a New York-based nonprofit involved in pumping new life into community spaces abandoned or left behind, the Old Bronx Borough Courthouse is opening its doors once again.  Only this time, after being shuttered for 37 years, its walls no longer resound with the smack of a judge’s gavel.  Instead, artists, performers, and the community-at-large can enter its cavernous space and call it home.

Meet Annika Connor, the Art World’s ‘Socialite Realist’

Kristin Sancken

A studio visit with Connor is an experience in itself. In lieu of a stuffy warehouse studio in Bushwick, the artist chose to work from her bright and cheery Dumbo loft. The walls are covered salon style with her whimsical portraits of ballet dancers, ruminating women, kissing couples, decadent interiors and stylized landscapes. Upon entering, you are greeted with a warm hug, cup of spiced coffee and invited to relax as you take in the sheer complexity of Connor’s diverse body of work. 

Chinese Artist Ai Weiwei Is Scheduled for Major Retrospective in London

Michael Roddy

The Chinese dissident artist Ai Weiwei will have what is being billed as the biggest retrospective of his work ever staged in Britain at an exhibition opening at the Royal Academy of Art in September, the academy said on Monday. The show is being mounted in Ai's absence, since he cannot travel outside China. For decades a critic of the Chinese government's record on free speech and human rights, Ai has been banned from travel since his 81-day detention in China in 2011.

The Brash New World of Trenton Doyle Hancock

Sandra Bertrand

If you think paying a visit to your local museum exhibit is a relatively safe endeavor, then beware.  It’s likely you have not visited the The Studio Museum of Harlem’s current exhibit,  Trenton Doyle Hancock: Skin and Bones, 20 Years of Drawing.  Chronicling the evolution of his comical, often nightmarish universe, it’s a show that may alternately delight and repel but guaranteed, one you will not soon forget.   

The Flux Art Fair –Harlem’s Second Renaissance

Sandra Bertrand

Fair founder Leanne Stella sees the Fair’s mission as “a way to showcase artists that underscore the cultural zeitgeist that is Harlem.”  Launched in May to coincide with the internationally recognized Frieze art fair, it embraces a unique criteria—the 21st century artist as a nomad, a creator whose nationality, ethnicity, gender or religion is combined with a global consciousness.

‘How We See’: Photographer Laurie Simmons’ Mainstream Embrace

Sabeena Khosla

Simmons made a name for herself in the ‘70s and ‘80s by constructing dollhouse rooms and photographing them. They were a subversive reflection on the Marxist notion of the fetishizing commodity and were done through a feminist lens. She was not interested so much with creating a narrative in her photographs, though her subject matter may have reflected otherwise. Rather, she refers to the early works as “doll still life work” and they became as such after she stared at the created spaces until they became void of meaning and abstract to her. 

Richard Gabriele and the Rise of Reverse Impressionism

Kristin Sancken

Philadelphia-based painter Richard Gabriele has emerged in the New York City art scene as a symbolic figurehead, reminding us that Romance does exist, even in our generation. Art has always been a part of Gabriele's life. He began drawing at an early age and kept sketchbooks throughout childhood and high school, traveling extensively to gain the experiences and stylistic influences depicted later in his paintings. By the time Gabriele realized his dream of becoming an artist in college, his techniques were nearly perfected.

$179.4 Million Picasso Painting Smashes Art Auction Record

Chris Michaud

A Picasso oil painting from 1955 smashed the record for the most expensive artwork ever sold at auction when it soared to $179.4 million at Christie's on Monday. The auction house had estimated "Les femmes d'Alger (Version 'O')" would sell for about $140 million, but several bidders competing via telephone drove the winning bid to $160 million, for a final price of $179,365,000 including Christie's commission of just over 12 percent.

Exploring the Art of Bahar Behbahani

Bahar Behbahani

Through her lyrical videos Behbahani stages a contemporary cultural critique by layering and juxtaposing allusions to past and present sociopolitical circumstances with a language that she draws from her experience as a painter. Her work has been featured in the 18th Biennale of Sydney, Australia; Sharjah Biennial 10, UAE; Queens Museum, New York; The Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum, Michigan; MACRO, Museum of Contemporary Art, Italy; Mimara Museum, Croatia; The Tribeca Film Festival, New York; as well as the Asia Art Biennial, Bangladesh, among others.

Documenting a Changing Vietnam Through Photographs

Andrew Lam

Though the country remained under a one-party rule, Vietnam has since the late 1980s eased its once-iron grip on the economy and cultural life, moving from a socialist to a free market economy. Gone are the days when citizens were required to discuss Marxist-Leninist doctrines at weekly neighborhood sessions. Gone too are the permits needed to buy rice from state-run stores, or to move from one city to another. The drab, impoverished and immobile nation that Catherine saw when she first visited in 1990 quickly shifted under her lens. And fascinated, she kept coming back. 

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