No Rules No Shame

August 10, 2010

Work of Art: Does an Artist Make Shit In The Woods?

Filed under: Uncategorized — corona @ 21:30

Yes. The answer is Yes.

Milana is off in the woods learning how to square dance and watching Jim Jarmusch films…pretty standard stuff for an artist residency. So, although she never officially handed over the 2nd to last episode review, it’s nearly a week later and either she’s been eaten by a bear, or she’s busy making REAL artwork and can’t be bothered to review the terrible work featured this past week.

Milana wasn’t the only person forced to confront nature and draw inspiration from it last week. No sir, the art-testants were ripped from the Beaver House (hehe…beaver) and driven into the forest to gather supplies for the next challenge: Nature Influenced Art. P.S. by the way, Jaclyn thinks photographs are found in nature, especially when they’re taken from her bathroom (hey, it’s where Nature Calls! Am I right? Huh? Whaaat? Gross.)

So yeah, there they were, walking around the woods picking up leaves and sniffing them. Pebbles were gathered, Miles found a sweet glory hole in a Nutty Pine, Peregrine danced around in a wacky outfit – just like all the gays she grew up with and won’t stop talking about – and Jaclyn was feeling under the weather, which meant it was too risky to get naked in the cold.

Bravo missed another excellent opportunity to educate the portion of the audience who might not know too much about earthwork artists, or other influential pieces inspired by nature. The least they could have done was flash a couple shots of anything Andy Goldsworthy, or a quick little peek of good ol’ Spiral Jetty, but instead we got to see Miles’ ass as he dried off post-shower. Not that I’m complaining, don’t get me wrong. Ironically, it looks a lot less tired and more alert than his face.

Do butts have OCD? Overly Complicated Diarrhea? Sorry.

Watching this episode helped me consider a couple of things. I’ve decided what bothers me most about this show, aside from the terrible work, awful personalities, lack of entertaining conversations, Peregrine’s stache, and 99% of the aired content – is that the producers (I’m talking to you, SJP) seem to have not paid any attention to brilliant shows like Top Chef and Project Runway. Those shows are so great about including conversations regarding concepts, famous chefs & designers, and how the work produced by the contestants fits into the context of the work that has come before it. I feel like every episode of Work of Art either assumes the audience is dominated by experts (giving the producers the benefit of the doubt) or doesn’t care at all about art history and contemporary practices. Instead, they rely entirely on a fan base solely concerned with pouty lips, heroes and villains, and personality disorders/conflicts. I highly doubt any viewer has seen a piece that they would love to have in their home, or personal collection…which is exactly why I figured this show would surely fail – few people believe they NEED art or even WANT art. People NEED to be clothed and they want to look great. People NEED to eat and want to savor something delicious. So far there hasn’t been anything to keep us interested, except for China Chow’s outfits and trying to figure out who Bill Powers looks like and why he’s even there in the first place.

Sorry for the rant, now back to the episode…

Abdi decided to take “charcoal drawing to the next level” – whatever that means. Again, perfect opportunity to show work by Robert Longo or Philadelphia fave, Phillip Adams. Abdi did a large self-portrait (surprise!) in his underwear using some pebbles he gathered in the woods; pebbles that looked mysteriously like pieces of charcoal purchased at Utrecht. Overall, the piece was boring and derivative, but Abdi is so positive and sweet that no one can fathom breaking his little heart.

Adams taking it to the next level. It's a whole room, dammit!

I actually kind of loved Peregrine’s piece because it was ridiculous and stupid. IF ONLY all trees wore boots! Maybe they do, in Nancy Sinatra’s headspace.

The shocker of the night for me, besides how easily Jaclyn takes disappointment (a good thing, considering her vapid work), was the decision to keep Peregrine over Nicole. I think we all knew it would be between Miles and Abdi – classic hero vs. villain – but I really thought they’d keep Nicole around for the sexual tension. Oh well.

The final episode seems to have gotten it right, based on the preview. It appears that the three finalists will be creating an entire body of work to display in the final gallery opening. That means, they’ve actually had time to work through their ideas and manipulate materials to best execute their concept…hopefully. Just another reason why an art competition series can’t really work. Lame challenges plus limited time = the worst undergrad pieces of crap you can imagine…except this time, the winner gets $100,000 and a show they absolutely don’t deserve.

Here are Brian’s best tweets of the evening (my favorite part of the whole show):

  • Two penises and one mustache totally makes sense for me (re: the final 3)
  • Should I watch Work Of Art, or stab lead hot pokers in my eyes??? #legendarydilemmas
  • I think it’s time the courts overturned #workofart #prop8

Can’t wait for next week! Who wants to cosplay for the finale! I call fake mustaches!!! (or the real thing…shame.)

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1 Comment »

  1. Yay for the Phillip Adams shoutout!!!

    Chatted it up with an artist who attends the infamous Judith Braun viewing parties (aren’t I connected now that I live in Brooklyn?) and he was saying that, as awful a person as MIles is, even Judith has to admit he should win, being the only person left with an iota of artmaking ability.

    I will miss Nicole’s hot-hobbit face. Also: her piece should have won and Peregrine (who looks like Ben Linus from Lost, incidentally) should have gone home.

    Looking forward to more snide tweets.

    Comment by snickerdoodles — August 11, 2010 @ 11:09


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