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kottke.org posts about exhibitions

Edward Burtynsky at the Brooklyn Museum of Art

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 09, 2006

I can’t remember where I first ran across Edward Burtynsky’s photography, but I’ve been developing into a full-fledged fan of work over the past few months. From a Washington Post article on Burtynsky:

Burtynsky calls his images “a second look at the scale of what we call progress,” and hopes that at minimum, the images acquaint viewers with the ramifications — he avoids the word price — of our lifestyle. But what if viewers just see, you know, some dudes and a ship?

“Another photographer might focus on the loss of life or pollution,” acknowledges Kennel of the National Gallery. “He uses beauty as a way to draw attention to something. It’s a very particular strategy.”

The Brooklyn Museum of Art is displaying an exhibition of Burtynsky’s photos until January 15. Well worth the effort to try and check it out. The scale of modernity, particularly in his recent photos of China, is astounding. In Three Gorges Dam Project, Dam #4, this huge dam seems to stretch on forever and you don’t know whether to goggle in wonder or shrink in horror from looking at it.

John Lasseter at MoMA

posted by Jason Kottke   Dec 21, 2005

MoMA just opened their show about Pixar last week and on Friday, we went to a presentation by John Lasseter, head creative guy at the company. Interesting talk, although I’d heard some of it in various places before, most notably in this interview with him on WNYC. Two quick highlights:

At 15 minutes long, the Q&A session at the end of his talk was too short. The MoMA audience is sufficiently interesting and Lasseter was so quick on his feet and willing to share his views that 30 to 40 minutes of Q&A would have been great.

[1] For you Pixar completists and AICN folks out there, the clip showed Lightning McQueen leaving a race track on the back of a flat-bed truck, bound for a big race in California. As the truck drives across the US, you see the criss-crossing expressways of the city stretch out into the long straight freeways of the American west, the roads literally cutting into the beautiful scenery. A cover of Tom Cochran’s Life is a Highway plays as the truck drives. The world of the movie features only cars, no humans…the cars are driving themselves.

Just Van Gogh!

posted by Jason Kottke   Dec 20, 2005

A quick note about the Van Gogh show at the Met that’s closing at the end of the month: if you’re in NYC, go see it. Admittedly, I’m a fan of Van Gogh, but I thought this was one of the best museum exhibitions I’ve ever seen. The exhibition features drawings (as well as a few paintings) from his short 10-year career as an artist, and you can really see how much he progressed during that time and how much his drawings and paintings were related. I can’t wait to go back over to the MoMA and look at Starry Night and The Postman and view them not as paintings, but more as drawings done with paint.

Audio interview with John Lasseter (basically creative

posted by Jason Kottke   Dec 15, 2005

Audio interview with John Lasseter (basically creative director at Pixar) and Ron Magliozzi, who helped curate the just-opened show at MoMA on 20 years of Pixar.

Safe: Design Takes On Risk

posted by Jason Kottke   Dec 13, 2005

At the risk (ha!) of missing it, I waited until this late in the game to check out Safe: Design Takes On Risk at the MoMA. Great show. Two of my favorite items:

For you armchair museum goers, what looks to be the entire exhibition is available online.

Also, the MoMA around holiday time, not so crowded. (Well, relatively so. There were still a fair number of people there, just not so many as in the Build-A-Bear store on 5th Avenue.)

The Burtynsky exhibition at the Brooklyn Museum

posted by Jason Kottke   Dec 12, 2005

The Burtynsky exhibition at the Brooklyn Museum of Art sounds good. I hope to get over there before it closes on January 15. Here’s his site with lots of photographs. “He often will shoot an image on three or four different brands of film, then print each image on three or four different brands of paper…then chooses the combination that produces the richest and most vivid look.”

There’s a Charles Darwin exhibition at the

posted by Jason Kottke   Dec 01, 2005

There’s a Charles Darwin exhibition at the Natural History Museum in NYC through May 2006. A tidbit not reported in the US press: the exhibition failed to attract corporate sponsorship because “American companies are anxious not to take sides in the heated debate between scientists and fundamentalist Christians over the theory of evolution”. Pussies.

Update: This letter sent into TMN throws some doubt on the whole lack of corporate sponsorship angle. (thx, chris)

Works by Chip Kidd (from Chip Kidd:

posted by Jason Kottke   Nov 28, 2005

Works by Chip Kidd (from Chip Kidd: Book One) will be on exhibition at Cooper Union through Feb 4, 2006.

Chanel and Karl Lagerfeld

posted by Jason Kottke   Aug 02, 2005

The Chanel exhibition at the Met showcases the fashion designs of Coco Chanel as well as the more recent fashions of Karl Lagerfeld’s design. The exhibition attempts to draw parallels between the older Chanel fashions and Lagerfeld’s newer work (words like “interpretation” and “reinvention” sprinkled the exhibition walls), but I had a hard time seeing Coco’s influence in much of his work. Seems more like Lagerfeld is out on his own, which is in keeping with his thoughts in this 2001 interview with Paper magazine. Initially he says he hates “nothing more than people who only look in one direction, which means only in their direction” but then that he finds it hard to collaborate with others (except with himself). Then:

When I do my own things, I’m not really too interested in other people telling me what to do.

Lagerfeld is a fascinating figure and may have captured the cultural zeitgeist of the 80s and 90s in Chanel’s fashions, but I don’t know if I buy any of this reinvention business. If you’d like the check out the exhibit for yourself, you’d better hurry…it’s only on for a few more days.