Newsletter – The Promise

There is a firm promise of equilibrium within the immeasurable spectrum of noise. In light of upset, and in view of change, it is important to keep in mind the inevitable righting of the scales, in whatever scope. The two interviews showcased this week mimic one valuable balance of many: contemplation in the harshness of sunlight and rest under the gravity of shade.

Filmmaker, photographer, and political analyst Michael Blum deconstructs ubiquitous systems of thought with an eerie grace and a dash of satire. Sporting a prolific and exhaustive repertoire, Blum dances from fragile subjects like elderly men at toy conventions to the thick skins of big business, taking stock of the far-reaching conditions wrought by a materialistic present. Blum’s body of work crystallizes the relevant and accusatory dialectic that no political answer is without its vulnerability and no commercial gesture occurs in a vacuum. Despite their ambitious and unflagging political program, Blum’s films betray a profound sympathy for the confused wanderings of the human family, rendered in the stillness of a discarded object or the meaningless gesture of an imperceptive stranger.

To meditative sculptor Elizabeth Gregory Gruen, a question with no answer far outweighs an answer with no question. In a glance, the roaming organicism of Gruen’s geometry seems a calculated endeavor, yet it is a curious and exploratory impetus that unites one rippling paper staircase with the next. Fancying the limitless merits of discovery over the insular reward of fulfillment, the Chicago-born sculptor probes the extreme recesses of expression, from peaceful ritual to spontaneous destruction. Down to the font size of the explanatory gallery plaque, Gruen’s work is an exercise in (defying) expectation. As a successful touch of comedy can enrich a solemn composition, a drop of human error can add a much deeper perfection than any mathematical precision.

Additional interviews include: Takehito Etani and Jonathan Guyer.

Any new books on your reading list? Crosby Doe is captivated by Cultural Amnesia, an impressive assortment of cutting biographies that holds accountable the greatest minds of the 20th century for their steps and missteps, in accordance with the often lucid, often tangential, humanistic standard of Australian critic Clive James. Emily Apter, another one of our users, is engrossed in the bleak and revelatory Boredom from famed Italian postwar writer Alberto Moravia, an alienating novel of emotional desolation spoken with frigid, necessary clarity.

International art platform Forecast is predicting the weather of tomorrow. Stationed at the Haus der Kulturen der Welt in Berlin, Forecast welcomes those intrepid thinkers whose lofty ideas on the future of art, technology, and interaction are struggling to leave the ground. Six seasoned representatives of six disciplines – curation, design, video, dance, music, and architecture – will bring to fruition the proposals of a lucky and enduring few. No travel costs, application fees, or degree of experience is demanded. Applicants have until November 30 to find their “meteorologist” and begin enacting a new, positive form of climate change.

Summoned by the interrupting strike and the reverberating whisper is the robust and steady hum of the gong.

As always, here are the links to the interview archive and free resources page.

Sincerely,

Brainard


Sponsor of the Week

Marian Goodman Gallery is pleased to present a new series of works by John Baldessari, Pollock/Benton. The exhibition opened on Friday, November 11th and will remain on view through December 23rd, 2016.

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