Category: San Suzie

The Digest. 02.01.10.

Elastic Time, 2010, by Alexandre Arrechea at the L.A. Municipal Art Gallery, through April 18. (Photo by San Suzie.)

The Bitch-tastic Music Mix.

For When You Want to Bitch-Slap Someone With a Chancla.

My partner-in-crime San Suzie and I went in to mind-meld mode to produce a music mix that pays tribute to all the Latin ladies of old. There’s heartache. There’s trash talking. There’s dancing. There’s lots and lots of wigs. Download it for free over at The World’s Best Ever.

C-Mon + San Suzie

Ask the Art Nurse: Maintaining fragile works on paper.

First of all, are you a bad or a good nurse? My main question, however, is from a collector/art lover’s angle. I love — absolutely LOVE — works on paper (I admit, it’s a fetish), but I have a dilemma: I’m terrified of placing any of the works near windows lest they are exposed to light and deteriorate.

I’ve heard that sun damage is so gradual that sometimes you don’t even notice the work is damaged until you put it beside another work (like another print from the same series). I properly frame all the work I purchase and use UV Plexiglas. But I hear that those don’t work very well after 5-10 years, since supposedly their effectiveness dwindles. I recently purchased an acrylic work on paper. I love it and have the perfect space for it but it has LOTS of light. Am I safe with acrylic? Also, I have photographs (C-prints). I want to love my art in the open but I fear that my love of art will never step out of the shadows where, at least, I know the art is safe. Am I being paranoid? Is there anything artists should be doing to guarantee their works don’t fade?

– Art lover desperately seeking to bring his art out of the closet

I am a good nurse, here to help you feed your fetishes. In the case of paper conservation — which I studied in graduate school under the phenomenal Antoinette King of MoMA, but abandoned when archeology came a-calling — I believe that a ton, not an ounce, of prevention is warranted. Fortunately, I live a stone’s throw from the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and have known its chief paper conservator, Janice Schopfer, since she was at the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco. In other words, relax. No more fears or paranoia are warranted. Read on — and let your love step out of the shadows.

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Obligatory Year-End Round-Up: The 420 List.

Stonerrific: Chrysler Wallpaper by Thomas Bayrle at the Venice Biennale 2009. See it large. (Photo by San Suzie.)

Because everyone and their mother has a year-end list wrapping up all the newsy, important stuff in the known universe, the staff here at decided to stay away from topical affairs and dedicate its list to the people from 2009 we most want to eat pink cake with.

Happy 2010, everyone! See you in the New Year…

xox, C-Mon + San Suzie

The C-Mon Q&A: Photographer and activist Dona Ann McAdams.

Cheerleader by Dona Ann McAdams. (Image courtesy of Opalka Gallery.)

Last year when we spent the year slacking around Rome, we were fortunate to spend many of those hours wandering the streets with photographer and activitst Dona Ann McAdams — the artist best known for Caught in the Act, a book of photographs chronicling the work of performance artists such as Karen Finley, Eric Bogosian, Blue Man Group, Meredith Monk, Ethyl Eichelberger, Ann Magnuson, Bill T. Jones, and Allen Ginsburg, among others. McAdams, a street photographer in the tradition of Henri Cartier Bresson, was a pretty funny companion, riffing on everything she saw. But what we didn’t always notice is that even while she gabbed, she was skillfully zeroing in on her surroundings without breaking pace or even stopping the conversation, snapping away with a three-decade old Leica. “Ninety percent of what I shoot is crap,” McAdams once remarked when we happened to see the hundreds of rolls of black and white film in her refrigerator. Despite what she may say, her filter nonetheless manages to catch startlingly beautiful, humorous, unguarded moments that are intended as much to be chronicles of McAdams interest in social activism as pure beauty.

The work is now the subject of a Some Women, a comprehensive mid-career survey (a sampling, McAdams calls it) at the Opalka Gallery in Albany. The show centers on McAdams longstanding interest in women as subject matter and it’s is well worth the drive, especially this coming Wednesday, December 9, when Paul H-O’s film Guest of Cindy Sherman in which McAdams appears, will be shown in conjunction with the show’s final week. To promote the exhibit and the film, McAdams has agreed to submit to our interrogation.

San Suzie: What’s the biggest stereotype about photography?
Dona Ann McAdams:
That it can illustrate an objective truth, and bear witness to an event. You can’t look at a photograph and know what’s going on. It’s just one person’s point of view.

If you could change one thing about the art world what would it be?
The way it’s looked at. Art should be in grocery stores. I’d like an exhibit at Sam’s Club.

What artist, living or dead, would you most like to party with?
I’d like to be at a jazz club in Harlem with Roy DeCarava and Tina Modotti. We’d be listening to Miles.

If you could have any work of art to hang in your bathroom, what would it be?
An original panel of Windsor McCay’s Little Nemo in Slumberland.

What two artists would you like to watch duke it out in a celebrity death match?
How about Caravaggio and William Burroughs dueling with pistols? But I’d rather see Walter Benjamin and Susan Sontag play chess.

If an alien from another galaxy landed on Earth and wanted to take back a single work of art to represent all of humanity, what would you give them?
Duchamp’s ready-made urinal. It says it all.

What imagery do you think is overused in art?
The self-portrait.

If you were to die and come back as a piece of art, what would it be?
I’d be Louise Bourgeois’ giant spider Maman and live in the Cortile at the Capodimonte Museum in Naples.

If you could vandalize any work of art, what would it be?
It would have to be Damien Hirst. But then he’d get even more press he doesn’t need. If you’re not going to eat the animals, put them in the ground or leave them in the ocean.

If art could kill, how would you like to die?
Listening to Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis. That kills me every time.