Words, words, noise and a melon on First Friday

First Friday was full of goodies. We started at the Fab. Here’s some pictures and a short video and some gossip at the bottom so be sure to scroll down.

Ed Ruscha
Ed Ruscha at the Fabric Workshop last Friday night

Ed Ruscha was looking like a little leprachaun in front of a packed audience at the Fabric Workshop’s new space last Friday.  The 2nd floor gallery space — which makes a great lecture hall — was certified for only 200 people with a live feed downstairs for the big spillover crowd.
Ed Ruscha and Barnyard Rembrandt.jpg
Ruscha and his slide of the Barnyard Rembrandt
According to Ruscha, who was showing slides of his influences and a few of his own work, Barnyard Rembrandt Chuck Byers (sic–it’s really Clark Byers, see obit) said, “‘I never passed up a good roof.'”
Ruscha went on to say of Byers’ work, “It reminds me of those wraparound videos on buildings today”  (referring to moving billboards and the moving news ticker around Times Square).
We had a great time laughing at Ruscha’s wry humor.  He was full of notable quips including:
Jasper John‘s Flag was my atomic bomb.
Muhammed Ali. My hero, he was outrageous in almost every way.  He’s worth getting choked up about.
Harold Edgerton‘s photos are frozen still lives.
Renato Bertelli‘s endless [Head of] Mussolini.  That’s my Mona Lisa.  It says everything about our time.
I like the ambiguity of monosyllabic words.
Maybe I’ll live in a Standard [gas] station.  Park the car and just go in.
accidental Ed Ruscha.jpg
Accidental Ed Ruscha. Outside the FWM on Arch Street.

This light box on Arch St. caught our friend Susan‘s eye.  She immediately dubbed it an “Ed Ruscha.”


Jamie Dillon’s Monomelon at Copy

We heard it moaning like a beached whale before we saw it–Jamie Dillon‘s Monomelon at Copy Gallery.  It’s a sound installation following up his sound installation last month at Vox.   People loved this melon.  They were hanging out trying to hear what the oracle had to say next.
Trevor Reese, installation at Space 1026, has audio and video and plants!
Trevor Reese, installation at Space 1026, has audio and video and plants!

Space 1026 has a terrific show by two artists, Trevor Reese of Brooklyn and Sighn (aka Matthew) of Chicago.  Words, wood, plants and video.  It’s one of the best shows we’ve seen there in a while — unexpected and provocative.  Fun, too.

IMG_7940 Sighn
Sighn at Space 1026.


IMG_7931 Sighn
Sighn’s “ITSOK” wall.  Hand-cut bass wood.  1,000 pieces, cut with a jigsaw, which explains Sighn’s aching back.  Individual units of ITSOK in bamboo or bass wood available for $20!

Marisa Olson
Marisa Olson’s video at Vox Populi

We made a video of Marisa Olson’s video at Vox to try to give you a sense of the action in the subtle piece.  Well, YouTube rejected our video as “content inappropriate.”  So here’s a photo. The action is:  this woman is tied with pink strings.  She’s wiggling to get out of her predicament.  Over time you see she’s got a razor in her hands.


Xiang Yang
Xiang Yang’s installation at Vox Populi.

Xiang Yang was at the opening, showing a new body of work — deconstructed chairs.  He scavenged the chairs from the streets of New York where he lives and lovingly sanded them to new abstract beauty.  Zhang also has an installation opening Oct. 17 at the Liao Collection piece –a room filled with Chinese furniture.  It reminds us of Mari Shaw‘s encounter with some Chinese art in Germany.


William Pym, former gallery director at Fleisher-Ollman Gallery,  is now living at Jersey City with his girlfriend and writing for Village Voice and Artforum. We got this from John Ollman, who told us while juggling a glass of wine and a copy of the PMA’s hot-off-the-presses James Castle catalog. Fleisher-Ollman’s upcoming Castle show is running in conjunction with the upcoming PMA exhibit. Ollman, by the way, is featured in the Castle documentary movie that’s part of the PMA’s exhibit.

Anthony Campuzano is having a solo show at ICA’s project space, opening Jan. 16. We heard this from Ollman and then ran into Anthony at Vox and he confirmed. He seemed calmer than us. We’re very excited about this. He’s working with ICA’s new curatorial assistant Kate Kraczon. Anthony told us another Philly art star, video and clay animation virtuoso Josh Mosley, will be in the large upstairs gallery at the same time.

Pepon Osorio told us he’s in a great-sounding group show opening October 19 at PS I in New York. NeoHooDoo: Art for a Forgotten Faith is co-organized by The Menil Collection Many of the artists in the show we’ve followed for years and love — including Philadelphia artist Terry Adkins. Here’s who else is in the exhibit:

Janine Antoni, Radcliffe Bailey, José Bedia, Rebecca Belmore, Sanford Biggers, Tania Bruguera, James Lee Byars, María Magdalena Campos-Pons, William Cordova, Jimmie Durham, Regina José Galindo, Felix Gonzalez-Torres, David Hammons, Michael Joo, Brian Jungen, Kcho, Marepe, Ana Mendieta, Amalia Mesa-Bains, Adrian Piper, Ernesto Pujol, Dario Robleto, Betye Saar, Gary Simmons, George Smith, Michael Tracy, Nari Ward