Category: Bravo’s Work of Art

Work of Art, Jerry Saltz’s Recap of Episode 5

Every week Jerry Saltz writes a recap of Work of Art for NYMagazine.  In case you forgot, Mr. Saltz is one of the judges on Work of Art and he is also the senior art critic for NYMagazine.  I enjoy the recaps almost more than I enjoy (or hate-enjoy) the show.  They help explain the reasoning and critiques of the judges and also de-mystify the reality show process.  For instance, the judging committee is told nothing about the contestants.  Everything they learn they learn via the critiques or by watching the television show.

I also love the recaps because of the comments section.  Mr. Saltz (okay, I’ll call him Jerry, because that’s how I talk to him in the comments), takes the time to read all of these comments and often responds to them.  He encourages his readers to talk about and write about and think about art; I love how he wants to make art and art criticism less scary and more popular.  I hope that he succeeds.

Each week I’ll be posting the link to Mr. Jerry’s recaps and I’ll also be quoting a selection from the article.  This week we had kids, and kid art that was better than most of the art that was made, and Tewz was eliminated (bye Tewz!  I didn’t like your name either).   You can read my thoughts on all of that in my liveblog.

So, here is the link to Jerry’s recap and here is some good stuff from it.  Not art-related this week, but still hilarious and awesome:

“Since artist vulnerabilities are coming out, I’ll share one of my own. An hour before taping, I’m standing in my underpants in front of the show’s gorgeous twentysomething stylist, Zoe, thinking to myself, Drink in the macho, baby! Zoe quietly looks me over and says, “Um, Jerry. Do you like spanks?” Wow! The old male magic is still sizzling! I heard this generation is kinky! She wants to spank me! Here. In a reality TV dressing room! With the door partly open! Then she holds up a teeny-weenie doll-sized elastic undershirt thingy. “This is a Spanx,” she says. A girdle. My ego retracts, turtlehead-like. Ditto my genitals. Reality TV isn’t just making me look fat. The free food I’ve been grazing on for weeks is showing! I ask Zoe if this garment is “a fat repressor.” Carefully not using terms like “muffin top” or “s’more,” she says, “Spanx are trimming.” I wedge myself into it. I had no idea what kind of constricting strangulation goes on under some women’s clothes.”

I told Jerry in the comments section that I wear some form of Spanx almost every day, and he said to me, and I quote: “WOW! You are God-like and string [sic]. I found it unbearable, like putting a tee-shirt on a cat…  ”

Aw, Jerry called me God-like and string.  I mean strong!  Thanks Jerry!

Work of Art Liveblog, Episode 5: Ripped from the Headlines

Once again it is Wednesday, and once again it is time for another amazing Work of Art episode and a hopefully amazing Work of Art liveblog.  Just a refresher: last week we our contestants had been reduced to ten, and the contestants had their fourth challenge.   This challenge required the contestants to team up with kids and to make works of art inspired by works by their kid-partners.  Sarah Jessica Parker was the judge.  We discovered much about our contestants: Sucklord has a soft spot for kids, Sara J. had a post traumatic stress disorder experience, and Dusty and Kymia proved to be awesome.  Kymia won with her lovely, grotesque drawing, and Tewz’s weird, conceptual growth piece got him eliminated.    Michelle also did a piece with EYES y’all, EYES.  Jerry Saltz thinks she is going to win.  Anyways, you can read my thoughts on last week’s episode here.

Bye Tewz, your name was also stupid.

This week the artists will be headng to the New York Times headquarters  to search for inspiration-providing headlines.  This will be fun!

9:00:  Everyone’s in a huddle, waiting to see who comes back.  Kymia and Dusty and Sara J. wander back in, and Sucklord’s trailing behind makes everyone freak out but oh, Sucklord is there!  And Sucklord also declares that he is tough like a cockroach.  Yep, that sounds about right.

9:01:  Kymia is thrilled that she won and that Simon is auctioning off her piece.  Lola, for some reason, really has it out for Kymia?  I mean, why?  Lola, you’re terrible, you aren’t on her level at all.  Anyways, title sequence time, complete with China’s terrible holy underboob-showing dress lord who let her wear that disaster?

9:02:  5:30am and Simon barges in all “WAKE UP YOU SLEEPY HEADS TIME TO BE INVIGORATED CHALLENGES.”  Young Sun gets all uppity about it because his gay gene makes him feel sad that Simon looks better than he does at 5:30 in the morning.

9:03:  Simon piles them all into a van.  To make matters worse it is RAINING at 5:30 in the morning, terrible.  They’re driving through New York and Dusty is freaked out because he doesn’t know New York at all because, in case you forgot, he’s from Arkansas!  Anyways, their destination is the building where The New York Times gets printed and it looks like a magical awesome place.

9:04:  No really it is magical.  There are self-propeling robots and crazy like, roller coasters conveying papers, and it is awesome.  And oh also China is there, in front of a pile of newspapers, and she is wearing a red dress that doesn’t have a hole in it and it is a lot better than the travesty they have her in for the title sequence.  China provides the challenge (find a headline that inspires your work of art!) and also tells a nervous Sucklord to “Use the Force!”  Sigh.

9:05:  Kymia reveals that she is one of those annoying people who doesn’t read the paper or keep abreast of current events at all.  That’s just lazy guys.  A few more things:  the artists have to use the newspaper in their work, the winner gets $20,000 (Dusty really wants it because he is from ARKANSAS and also he is poor, he tells us), and the winner also gets his or her work exhibited in the NYTimes building near Times Square.  Oh but after this challenge there is no immunity ever again ever.

9:06:  Anyways, now we get a ten minute montage of people tearing through the pile of newspapers looking for their headlines.  People choose articles on serial killers, the B.P. oil spill, and Ai WeiWei’s imprisonment (that’s Young Sun of course).

9:07:  Times up!  Off to Utrecht, with Simon in the lead!  For some reason the artists are wheeling out barrels of newspaper but, whatever.  At Utrecht Lola, as usual, is all “I do not have a clear idea of what i am going to make.”  Lola, you never know what you are going to make.  Your “suffering artist” persona, as Sara J. calls it, is totally old.  And stupid.  I hope you get eliminated, even if you do look like Eliza Dushku.

9:08:  And off to the studio they go!  Sarah K. is doing an article on Alexander Styron, about depression and madness.  Bayete has chosen an article that reviews the musical Sister Act which is AWESOME, he’s going to be some piece about religion and how he doesn’t like it which is only mildly cliche.   Dusty’s article is on the failing economy (because he is from Arkansas and according to him people in Arkansas are poor).

9:09:  Young Sun’s Ai WeiWei article is about censorship, so he’s trying to bleach the ink from his paper but he’s only succeeding in ruining the paper.  He’s afraid he’s going home.  And last week’s photograph of Young Sun hopping about like a big gaysian bird takes us into the commercial break.

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Work of Art, Jerry Saltz’s Recap of Episode 4

Every week Jerry Saltz writes a recap of Work of Art for NYMagazine.  In case you forgot, Mr. Saltz is one of the judges on Work of Art and he is also the senior art critic for NYMagazine.  I enjoy the recaps almost more than I enjoy (or hate-enjoy) the show.  They help explain the reasoning and critiques of the judges and also de-mystify the reality show process.  For instance, the judging committee is told nothing about the contestants.  Everything they learn they learn via the critiques or by watching the television show.

I also love the recaps because of the comments section.  Mr. Saltz (okay, I’ll call him Jerry, because that’s how I talk to him in the comments), takes the time to read all of these comments and often responds to them.  He encourages his readers to talk about and write about and think about art; I love how he wants to make art and art criticism less scary and more popular.  I hope that he succeeds.

Each week I’ll be posting the link to Mr. Jerry’s recaps and I’ll also be quoting a selection from the article.  This week we had kids, and kid art that was better than most of the art that was made, and Tewz was eliminated (bye Tewz!  I didn’t like your name either).   You can read my thoughts on all of that in my liveblog.

So, here is the link to Jerry’s recap and here is some good stuff from it:

“The scenes of artists at work in their studios are revealing. Not knowing what to do, Sara J. asks her kid, “Have you ever heard of exquisite corpse?” (I can only imagine what the kid was thinking.) I totally love it when Michelle asks whether she’s allowed to touch them—meaning the kids, not the art. When her inner ghoul talks to her child about “swans pecking people’s eyes out,” I really perk up. I dig Lola and Young’s discomfort with their children. Young jumps the conceptual-art shark, asking his child, “Would you mind if I abstracted your idea?” Lola stares at her kid like it’s an alien (generally my mode of behavior in these situations). Some artists go gaga. Schoolteacher Dusty is a natural. Kimia somehow gets her reticent kid to spin an elaborate backstory for her drawing, and ends up rocking the house with a wonderful Grimm’s fairy tale foray into fantasy, horror, overeating, and innocence.”

Oh, Jerry.  Kids bring out the inner sap in everyone.

Work of Art Liveblog, Episode 4: Back to School

Once again it is Wednesday, and once again it is time for another amazing Work of Art episode and a hopefully amazing Work of Art liveblog.  Just a refresher: last week we our thirteen contestants were now twelve, and they still had names like Sucklord and Jazz-Minh (ungh), and the contestants weathered their third challenge.   This challenge required the contestants to make a pop art piece inspired by Andy Warhol, and the guest judge was pop artist and Andy Warhol lover Rob Pruitt.  Oh, also, it was a double elimination.  DOOM.  Young Sun won with his pink and interactive anti-Proposition 8 piece, and he also got a big spread in Entertainment Weekly.  Kymia should have won with her boobs and water bottle piece but boobs are not allowed in Entertainment Weekly, so I think she sabotaged herself.  Dusty, Jazz-Minh (ungh), Leon and Michelle were in the bottom four, and Leon and Jazz-Minh were eliminated.  See ya Jazz-Minh, you GDB.  Oh and also China was all “Bayete you are lucky you had elimination this week” which was bitchy and hilarious!

I'd sign language goodbye, Leon, but I just don't know how.
I hated this bitch. And the way she spelled her name was stupid. Hippie.

This week the artists are paired up with a kid(!!!) and have to make art based by the kid(!!!) and this should be hilarious.  I cannot wait to see what Sucklord does.  And how many times he curses in front of his poor kid.   Oh lord, these poor kids.

9:00:  Yay everyone is sitting around at the loft and waiting and being nervous yay…and in comes Young Sun and Kymia and Dusty and Michelle.  Dusty is all “my family, I need to get back on track for my family” and Young is all “yay I won but I don’t have immunity so, balls.”

9:01:  Oh man they have a little chalk board list with everyone’s birthdays and zodiac signs and ages and people are being CROSSED OFF as they get eliminated.  That is awesome.  You know what isn’t awesome?  CHINA’S STUPID RED DRESS THAT HAS A HOLE IN IT.

9:02:  The sun rises over New York City, and our intrepid artists head out for the day, and discover a studio filled with CHILDREN.  WHAAAAT.  Sucklord is perplexed because there is a little girl sitting at his desk.  He immediately says “I AM THE SUCKLORD” and that poor kid looks so confused.

9:03:  Michelle is paired with a boy who is drawing a scorpion tail and he regards her kid with a bit of fear.  Dusty is all over this challenge because he teaches 5th graders.  Bayete is pretty much worried that the kids will draw better than he can which, valid.  Oh hey China has bangs now, when did that happen.  They look good!

9:04:  Look!  Sarah Jessica Parker!  Kymia calls her a “fairy art-mother” which is awesome.  SJP introduces the kids who are from Studio in a School, and they are from the NYC public school system.  Dusty is super thrilled about this whole thing.  Each kid has brought a work of art they have done, and the challenge is to create a work of art that is inspired by and compliments the kids’ works of art.

9:05:  SJP gets to be a judge i think?  Random observation: Lola looks like Eliza Dushku.  So, we meet the kids.  Sara P. has a little girl named Zelda who has made a word collage.  Dusty is paired with a boy named Kei, who has a piece with a lot of negative space.  Liora and Isabel, who are with Bayete I think, have this lovely line drawing piece, and their work has already been in a gallery lucky her.  Marlo, who is with Sarah K., did a silhouette piece.

9:06:  Reynie, who is with Sucklord, did a painting of a Harry Potter tree thing.  Sucklord is thrilled by Reynie because she was raised by parents who had Star Wars figures on top of their wedding cake, so she’s a big nerd too!  Victory!

9:07:  SJP and China leave.  Gabriel, who is with Sun, did a bird mobile.  Kyle, who is with Tewz, did some kind of a vegetable piece?  i have no idea.  Anyways everyone is brainstorming now.  Lola’s kid is all “oh no, doom,” which, yeah.

9:08:  Kymia is paired with a girl named Alana, whose piece is a carrot on a beach.  This really stumps Kymia because, I mean, a carrot on a beach?  But Alana appears to be full of like, stories, of this little girl who eats carrots and has dropped her carrot and likes carrots or something like that?  Anyways, the kids all go away now.

9:09:  And our contestants go to Utrecht.  We get Lola’s backstory.  Her mom dated Al Pacino for TEN YEARS which is INSANE LOLA WHY HAVE YOU NOT TOLD US THIS BEFORE?!?!  Wow.  Tewz, who had one of the vegetable pieces by a kid named Kyle, decides to make a piece about the idea of growth and growing, using the word “grow.”  I hope he makes it all grafftti and what not.  Oh also evidently his graffiti got him a scholarship to the Art Institute of Chicago, which is cool.  Yay Tewz.

9:10:  Sucklord is worried about letting his kid down.  He’s getting all choked up about the kid.  aw, Sucklord has a heart.  Sucklord is GROWING on me guys, I know he seems like such a douche but maybe he isn’t really a douche?   Sucklord loves being around kids, probably because he’s a big kid himself.  That’s sort of adorable.  And I was all worried about how he’d handle this, guess I was wrong!

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Work of Art, Jerry Saltz’s Recap of Episode 3

Every week Jerry Saltz writes a recap of Work of Art for NYMagazine.  In case you forgot, Mr. Saltz is one of the judges on Work of Art and he is also the senior art critic for NYMagazine.  I enjoy the recaps almost more than I enjoy (or hate-enjoy) the show.  They help explain the reasoning and critiques of the judges and also de-mystify the reality show process.  For instance, the judging committee is told nothing about the contestants.  Everything they learn they learn via the critiques or by watching the television show.

I also love the recaps because of the comments section.  Mr. Saltz (okay, I’ll call him Jerry, because that’s how I talk to him in the comments), takes the time to read all of these comments and often responds to them.  He encourages his readers to talk about and write about and think about art; I love how he wants to make art and art criticism less scary and more popular.  I hope that he succeeds.

Each week I’ll be posting the link to Mr. Jerry’s recaps and I’ll also be quoting a selection from the article.  This week we had a double elimination, and bid adieu to Jazz-Minh, who was a GDB, and deaf artist Leon, whose work of pop art really didn’t pop.   You can read my thoughts on all of that in my liveblog.

So, here is the link to Jerry’s recap and here is some good stuff from it:

“I’m on this show to explore how art can be brought to non-élite audiences. Yet the way this challenge is phrased reminds me of the bogus ways in which art is translated for popular media. Presenting art to lay audiences is tricky. Explaining why an all-white painting or a snow-shovel or a replica of a Brillo box is art involves a complex set of interweaving contexts, accumulated knowledge, and faith. To the uninitiated, Pop Art is basically bright colors, commercial products, cartoons, celebrity culture — a combination of Andy Warhol and Roy Lichtenstein. However, if an art student were given an assignment involving Pop Art, he/she would be told to “Create a work which address issues of mechanical reproduction, aura, advertising, and popular culture, making it visually accessible, replete with irony, sincerity, and politics, without being derivative or simplistic.”

PREACH JERRY PREACH.  You’re the best.