A cheeseburger deluxe by Maira Kalman, from The Principles of Uncertainty
Intrepid assistant Mike and I took a few hours off from our 20x200 toil this evening and went to Maira Kalman's opening at Julie Saul and God, I wish that all openings could be so nice. The heavy rain that came earlier in the evening washed away the throngs of hipsters (or maybe kept them indoors) so 22nd St. was nearly deserted. As we walked into the building, I wondered whether I had the wrong night, it wouldn't be the first time. But stopping at the sixth floor, the elevator opened to a din of voices and the air was warm with the presence of people.
The gallery itself was crowded enough to feel that buzz of being somewhere, but not overwhelmingly itchy and get me out of here even if I have to fall through the floor hot. The attendees were a perfect mix of people who loved Maira, people who worship her (I saw eyes shining with excitement upon meeting her, and really who could blame the owner of those eyes?) and people who work with her and I imagine inspire her and everyone there to wish her well.
A painting of Louise Bourgeois' sink by Maira Kalman, from Principles of Uncertainty
Principles of Uncertainty is a wonderful show, based on the yearlong series of the same name that Maira did for Times Select, now free to be viewed online by a select many, including you. (Go look.) And it's also a delightful book that you should buy.
I have the book, but oh I would so like to buy myself one of those gouache paintings hanging on Ms. Saul's walls. They are fantastic - sweet and playful and full of joy and humor and entirely authentic. And that is so very much the thing for me, the authenticity. No posture or pose, just an energy for living and for seeing everything around you and imagining those things you can't.
I'll be talking about the gallery, Hey, Hot Shot! and 20x200. I will have some nifty 20x200 stickers to hand out as well. (They really are swell... I cannot stop singing the praises of Little Jacket for the awesome logo and branding.)
So, yea... See you later? Hope so.
(There's drinks after too, around the corner at Merc Bar.)
I am late in announcing this, and you've likely seen it on other photography blogs, but it bears repeating.
Photojournalist Stephanie Sinclair has organized a project called Operation Azra, a benefit to help a young Pakistani woman named Azra, and other women like her who have been victims of acid attacks. Here's some info from the site:
World-renowned photojournalists are donating their favorite images, signed and printed, to raise money for female victims of acid burning and to raise awareness about a fate inflicted on many women in Pakistan. Marked with dishonor, their harsh disfigurement often forces them to live in the shadows of every-day life--excluded by family and society.
I admit it, I'm tired. I'm living on coffee and not much else, staying up late and getting up early. In part it's because I'm keyed up, and in part it's because there's just so much to do.
I'm sitting in my gallery watching NYC walk by, Patrick is in the room with me, hanging the show. People keep stopping and starting. It's just that good. (Can I say that without being a braggart? I'm not sure, but I feel it must be said.)
It's been a long day. There are a few places I want to be but cannot - Martin Parr's Colour Before Color festivities at Hasted Hunt, Blindspot's shindig for Jason Fulford, celebrating thier new, co-edited issue. It's cool though, since most of the people I'd see there will be here on Friday (fortunately that evening's weather is forecasted to be perfectly suited for a block party.)
It's been a very Magnirific week so far - parties, and cocktails and books and slideshows and there's still more to come.
So yea, I'm tired, but it's all good. I can't seem to string together words in an interesting manner at the moment, so instead, I refer you to Great Portraits, wherein our American Portraitists weigh in on their own favorites, as told to Mr. Colberg over on the jen bekman blog.
The experience made me feel normal, like what I was doing was the way to do it. That everything you do to create something is the right way to create it. You can make it better, you can “bust it open”, you can constantly revise and revisit but your process is your process and it’s how it should be. That part of this is about just being honest, simple, curious, and sincere - and that creates not just good work, but a better self.