Archive for the ‘art’Category

Hot Art + Design Festivals happenings in May


May is starting out with a big  bang this month is jumping with loads of of art and design fairs and festivals all over NYC. The second week in May 8-19th starts off with a bang—it’s  NYCX DESIGN loads of events taking place in Industrial City in Brooklyn and Manhattan. Next up is WantedDesignNY and ICFF both take place from May 15th-19th, and luckily you can walk between the two venues. Since WantedDesign is happening in two locations they visitors can take the shuttle bus running between both locations.


Did I mention Art Fairs happening this weekend too, for the time ART FLUX in Harlem opens at the newly renovated Corn exchange Building on 125th Street. And if you love eating make sure to check out HARLEM EATUP both are surely to attracts loads of hungry people all eager to experience art and chow down at the best restaurants in the neighborhood.

Inside Out. Polish Graphic Design in the Making: From a pencil sketch to the final click – graphic design and illustrations in the making organized will present a extraordinary exhibition of works by Polish designers and illustrators during WantedDesign festival from 15th to 18th May, 2015 in New York. The curators of this stand out exhibition focus not just on the final product: a poster, a book, a dress, a plate or a package, but also on the process of the product’s development.

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05 2015

Daniel Minter: Two Worlds & The Colorful Story Of Okra

Daniel Minter began working in 1980 as a painter, illustrator, and computer graphics artist. Minter has illustrated nine children’s books, including Seven Spools of Thread: A Kwanzaa Story, winner of a Best Book Award from the Oppenheim Toy Portfolio, and The Riches of Oseola McCarty, named an Honor Book by the Carter G. Woodson Awards. Minter’s paintings and sculptures have been exhibited both nationally and internationally at galleries and museums including the Seattle Art Museum, the Tacoma Art Museum, Bates College, Hammonds House Museum and the Meridian International Center. Minter is the founding director and vice-president of Maine Freedom Trails, Inc. He created the markers for the Portland Freedom Trail, which identifies significant sites related to the abolitionist movement and the Underground Railroad in Portland, Maine. He created the 2004 Kwanzaa stamp and the 2011 Kwanzaa stamp for the U.S. Postal Service. Minter lives in Portland, Maine with his wife, Marcia, and son, Azari Ayindé.


07 2012

Montserrat Daubon and Pedro Villalta Pod Sculpture Livens Up Lenox Avenue

Driving or walking north of 50th street on Park Avenue, you can’t help but notice the Park Avenue Malls Public Art installation. Now Harlemnites can rave about their own public arts project mounted by two local artists Montserrat Daubon and Pedro Villalta. The duo erected the first public art on Lenox Avenue and 124th Street median, sought help through the local community organization by submitting a proposal to the Mount Morris Park Community Improvement Association, who aided them in securing permits from DOT, that also awarded them $1000.00. Requiring more funding from completion of the project, the artists launched major Kickstarter campaign raising $8,520.00, surpassing their goal of $7,500.00 needed to complete this project.

“The Pod” organic shape—made of hollow steel, viewers get to feel the rough surface texture layered with dripped bronze over the surface skin. Looming above trees and pedestrians the foreboding sculpture stands 10 feet tall, and 3 feet at its widest point and it’s mounted on a tiered series of steel plates. Sadly, the pod sculpture slotted for only 11-month, but its still exciting seeing public art on Lenox Avenue liven up Harlem’s booming cultural scene. I’m enjoying seeing “The Pod” on Lenox Avenue, and hoping the duo or other artist creates more exploratory artistic projects. Better yet, let’s create a Harlem Public Art Fund.



06 2012

SPARE BEATS: Happenings Near You

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art> MARGARET ROSE VENDRYES’ new African Diva series 33 1/3: Pushing the Needle, a series of the hottest and sexiest divas from 70s and 80s (pictured above); offers up a radical commentary on and comparison of the gender in African Culture and contemporary society. The show opens this week May 29th  through June 16th, 2012, at the Gelabert Studios Gallery, 255 West 86th St NYC (212) 874-7188. Stop by for the opening reception on Saturday, June 2, 4‐7pm. For more information contact: Tucker Contemporary Art website at

11,541 red chairs set up in Sarajevo as a memorial to the victims of the Bosnian War.

urbanism>Did you know that pirates were once hanged from the gallows on the island where the Statue of Liberty now stands? Want to unearth more  unusual or wacky facts about NYC then you’ll love learning about Angela Riechers countless stories on her new website Sites of Memory, a map-based website accompanied by smartphone tours that reattach the stories of New York City’s forgotten dead to the urban landscape. Best of all are the audio narration by Kurt Andersen, Lewis H. Lapham, and Luc Sante. Did I mention that Angela Riechers a designer and writer, and D-Crittert buddy from School of Visual Arts.  

food> More D-Critters on the up and up, Hala Abdulmalak launches Kettle Falafel, at the Hester Street Fair on the lower eastside in Manhattan this coming Saturday June 2, stop by to try out the best Falafel sandwiches in the city. I love my falafel topped off with hot sauce. Kettle Falafel is stuffed in thinly rolled whole-wheat pita dripping with tangy mint sauce, homemade made from scratch with the freshest of organic ingredients.


05 2012

Xenobia Bailey: The Aesthetic of Funk

Fiber artist Xenobia Bailey makes crocheted hats that are anything but typical. Her hats are objects with odd shapes and forms, embellished with feathers and beads and luscious color combinations intricately woven into patterns that are outrageously beautiful one-of-kind hats. Her hats are eye grabbing. Each hat is a showstopper, and each wearer a performer turning passerbyers heads. On the streets people stop in awe of Xenobia’s hats curiously questioning. Where did you get that cool hat?

She’s embodies a modernist flair decked in stylish Mies Van der Rohe black round eyeglasses, her clothes crocheted in brilliant colors and patterns, and textures emotes what this prolific fiber artists calls, “funk.” As a fiber artist her hats are a blending of tactile textures, rich patterns and anthropomorphic shapes, seeing her hats I can’t help but think of the ebullient spices in New Orleans flavorful gumbo stew. She likens her aesthetic to the syncopated beats of funk music informed by African patterns found in textiles and architecture, and the rhythms of global music practices of call and response. She has BA in Industrial Design from Pratt Institute. Xenobia’s work links the symbiotic relationship between her design background and being a fiber-artist.

If you missed her exquisitely crocheted hats at the Global Africa Project held at Museum of Art and Design in 2010, then visit for more information on her work. She’s represented by STUX gallery in NYC and listing on upcoming shows and more of her work can be found on Thinking of wearing an original Neo-Funky crocheted hat make sure to visit Xenobia Bailey’s Etsy shop. 


04 2012

Paradise Returns In The Bronx

The No Longer Empty crew strikes again with their latest major project, This Side of Paradise opened on April 4, 2012—what’s behind the gates of the Andrew Freedman Home will clearly make the Bronx’s a hotbed of artistic endeavors and much needed cultural destination. The NLE curators transformed the interior space with the works of  select visual artists addresses site specific work that respond to such issues as memory, immigration, storytelling, aging and the creation of fantasy informed by the original concept of the Home “being poor in style” suggests. This Side of Paradise celebrates human ingenuity, the strength of the human spirit and the resilience needed to fashion beauty, hope and rejoicing. This show features over 35 artists of which include Linda Cummingham, Justen Ladda Sofia Maldonado, and Federico Uribe, you still have time to hang out at the Andrew Freedman Home work the show runs through 05 June, 2012. For more fun happenings in the Bronx check out No Longer Empty website.

This installation takes place at The Andrew Freeman Home once  a haven, paradise, for the rich elderly who had lost their fortunes. Bequeathed by millionaire Andrew Freedman, the Home provided not only food and shelter but all the accoutrements of a rich and civilized life style – white glove dinner service, a grand ball room, a wood-paneled library, billiard room and a social committee who organized concerts, opera performances and the like.

Referencing this quixotic history, This Side of Paradise references the past and reconnect the vision of Andrew Freedman to today’s Bronx and its realities. The exhibition and its extensive public programming onsite and offsite draws together the economic and social history of the Home with the present day realities of the Bronx and its residents.




03 2012

FiberPhilly2012: Get Your Fiber On!


Philadelphia, the city of brotherly love was crowned Fiber Month by Mayor Michael Nutter. This March and April Fiber Philadelphia 2012 will hosting a series of lectures, exhibitions planned for 40 locations at such major institutions as Moore College of Art and Design, Crane Arts building and numerous independent art galleries. Elissa Auther, kicked off the opening weekend with a lecture at Moore College of Art and Design on, Fiber in the 21st Century Art World,  on the explosion of fiber and fiber-base practices in contemporary art and everyday life. Elissa is Associate Professor of Contemporary Art at the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs and Adjunct Curator at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Denver and her book String, Felt, Thread and the Hierarchy of Art and Craft, published by University of Minnesota Press in 2010. For more information click the calendar of events: Fiber Philly events.

Below: Materiality Exhibition held at Moore College of Art and Design.



03 2012

Social Media Is Changing the Way We Decorate

Lots of amazing presentations jumping off throughout  Social Media Week, however I started my Valentine day off with Digital Voyeurism panel held at the Hearst Magazines Urban Theater.  Much like the early onset of food bloggers revolutionized blogging—now design/lifestyle bloggers are making huge strides blogging about what’s chic and using social media— all has changed the way people decorate there spaces. Speaking on the what’s chic Bryan Batt,  Jeanine Hays, and Christiane Lemieux, each shared stories of about their blogs, shops and products. Now design bloggers are taking the lead with decorating magazines following suit and featuring eclectic colorful home decor photography from a more humanistic perspective rather then sterile sparse decor of the past.

Bryan Batt

It’s Time For Good Ole Food Fight!


Food Fight: If you’re riled up over food why not join the conversation surrounding food questions of sustainability, obesity, sovereignty, ethics, culture, science, innovation, diversity and the future. Design Indaba is gathering some designers, artists, chefs, thinkers and food experts and posing some provocative questions. You’ve got food in your face! Join the food fight and have your say too. For more information click Design Indaba Food Fight. 

Above: Photo featuring Martin Hablesreiter one half of Austrian design duo Honey and Bunny, with Sonja Stummerer. Although they work in architecture, product and exhibition design, their primary focus and interest is in food design. Recently they published the book Food Design XL. Below: Clip from the Food Design film  highlighting design themes of  Honey and Bunny’s work. 


02 2012

A Glimpse into The African and African Caribbean Design Diaspora Festival

This is an excerpt featured on the Studio Museum in Harlem blog, it’s my first in a series of design articles.

London is one of the hottest and most creative cities, bristling with a multicultural community. Yet its Black artists and designers have remained largely untapped. That is until now. Just this past September, London was booming with design festivals showcasing innovative furniture, objects and fabulous fashions. Among them was the latest installment of the African and African Caribbean Design Diaspora Festival, a hotbed of new ideas, inspiration and creativity. This year’s theme, “?Choices!,” attracted some 22,000 visitors (2,000 more than in 2010). The AACDD festival took place from September 9 to 25, coinciding with the London Design Festival and constituted AACDD’s second successful year. It was the latest project launched by the British European Design Group’s (BEDG) three-year initiative, which is playing an increasingly important role in diversifying London’s creative community.

The festival director, Karin Phillips, Design Director Clemens Hackl, and Nigerian-born designer and curator, Emamoke Ukeleghe, orchestrated this production. The artists represented included roughly 100 graphic designers, multimedia artists, illustrators, industrial and product designers, and visual artists of African and African-Caribbean descent working in the U.K., Africa, the Caribbean, Japan and the United States. Hackl explained, “These artists and designers made a huge impact on visitors with their innovative works.” And thanks to funding from the London Arts Council, this year the AACDD Festival reached more people through a well-designed festival guide, website and social media platforms.

AACDD’s festival took place in three main locations: BargeHouse in OXO Towers in SouthBack, Hospital Club, and the Re-Loved Lounge at 100% Design. With 1,333 square feet of raw warehouse space, the BargeHouse served as the perfect blank canvas setting for browsing art lovers. It featured four floors of curated work by fine artists, illustrators, graphic designers, fashion designers, multimedia artists, and photographers. On one floor, Below the Surface, a photographic project by young black teenagers from London’s African and African-Caribbean communities, was a whopping success. The teenagers documented the colorful facets of everyday life, and produced an eye grabbing collection shot with disposable cameras given away through AACDD’s tweets and Facebook postings. For more click here>>




01 2012