New York – Dan Colen: “Mailorder Mother Purgatory” at Lévy Grovy Through June 13th, 2018

Sunday, June 3rd, 2018

Dan Colen, Merope (2018), via Levy Gorvy
Dan Colen, Merope (2018), via Levy Gorvy

It’s been some time since there was a full show of works by Dan Colen on view in New York.  Having decamped upstate to explore a more deliberate, meditative practice in conjunction with running his own farm, the artist’s modes of practice, and now even his representation, has undergone a slow but deliberate shift.  Now, with a body of new works in tow, the artist has opened his first exhibition with his new gallery, Lévy Gorvy.  Grouping together a body of sculptures and paintings, the artist returns to familiar ground, exploring and manipulating previous modes of working to create a striking, and mature, selection of pieces.

Dan Colen, Mother (2017-2018), via Levy Gorvy
Dan Colen, Mother (2017-2018), via Levy Gorvy


Dan Colen’s Philanthropic Farming Venture Profiled in WSJ

Tuesday, May 3rd, 2016

Dan Colen, via WSJThe WSJ profiles Dan Colen’s upstate farm project, where the artist’s full crop output is donated to the New York City Food Bank.  “Art turned out to be way more of a business than I ever intended,” Colen says of his venture.  “The last thing I need is more business.” (more…)

AO On Site (Final Summary Part 2 of 2): The Art – Art Basel Miami Beach Art Fair 2012 Photoset and Recap

Monday, December 10th, 2012

Sean Kelly, Los Carpinteros, Kosmaj Toy (2012)
Sean Kelly Gallery, Los Carpinteros, Kosmaj Toy (2012).

All images by A.M. Ekstrand for ArtObserved, on location at Art Basel Miami Beach Fair.

Art Basel returned once again in Miami Beach this past week for the 11th annual Art Basel Miami Beach Fair. Featuring over 300 galleries representing 36 countries around the world, the show has exhibited marked growth from last year’s event, with well over 2,000 artists flocking to exhibit at what has become the internationally-renowned closing party for the world art market each year.  It is of course always an irony that tens of thousands will fly down for the events and parties, with many of them never visiting the vast aggregation of what it said to be roughly $1.5 billion worth of art in one (large) room, a collection that few museums in the world could compete with.   Below is a selection of some of the works we thought to be notable from the fair.

Helly Nahmad Gallery, Mark Rothko No. 1 (1957) and Alexander Calder, installation view
Helly Nahmad Gallery, Mark Rothko No. 1 (1957) and Alexander Calder, installation view


AO On Site Miami Beach – OHWOW: “It Ain’t Fair”, Friday, December 7th, 2012

Sunday, December 9th, 2012

Terry Richardson OHWOW It Aint Fair 2012
Terry Richardson and Pharrell Williams at OHWOW It Ain’t Fair 2012 photo by Aviva for Art Observed

On December 7th, 2012, at 743 Washington Avenue (on the Miami Beach side and not across the bay in the design district) OHWOW inaugurated the fifth and last edition of It Ain’t Fair (IAF), a venue for avant-garde art across all media. It began in 2008 in Miami, concurrent with the main fair, as another way to view work by emerging artists such as Tauba Auerbach, Ashley Bickerton, Cyprien Gaillard, Clayton Patterson and others.

OHWOW It Aint Fair Miami 2012
Atmosphere at OHWOW It Aint Fair Miami 2012, all photos by E. Schwartzberg for ArtObserved unless otherwise noted


Art Observed’s Art Basel Miami Beach 2012 Guide to Fairs and Events with Newslink Summary

Monday, December 3rd, 2012

Art Basel Miami Beach 2011 photo by ArtObserved
Art Basel Miami Beach 2011 photo by ArtObserved

Despite the large number of exhibitors from New York who are in recovery from Hurricane Sandy, almost  every Chelsea gallery scheduled to exhibit will be at this year’s 11th edition of Art Basel Miami Beach week. Events begin as early as today, Monday, December 3rd and run through Sunday, December 9th. Exhibitors and artists are preparing for a flurry of activity, with a multitude of fairs, some old, some new; public installations, exhibitions, collaborations and of course, parties centering around the Delano, The W, Soho Beach House, The Deauville, The Raleigh, The Standard and others. Check out the detailed schedule of events below.

Visionaire Magazine party at Delano Hotel 2011 photo by ArtObserved


New York – AO Auction Results: Phillips de Pury & Co. Contemporary Evening Sale, Thursday, November 15th, 2012

Friday, November 16th, 2012

Phillips de Pury saleroom photo by ArtObserved
Phillips de Pury saleroom photo by ArtObserved

On Thursday night, boutique auction house Phillips de Pury & Co. hosted the final Contemporary Art Evening Sale in a blockbuster week for the art market. Tallying $79.9 million against its projected estimate of $73 to $110 million, Phillips de Pury’s Chief Executive Officer, Michael McGinnis, stated “we’re happy with the competition and prices,” especially after the third consecutive night of Contemporary Art sales. McGinnis reflected on the evening saying ” it was a small and deliberate sale, with works specifically chosen to compliment the week.”

Andy Warhol Mao courtesy Phillips de Pury & Co.
Andy Warhol Mao courtesy Phillips de Pury & Co.

Despite achieving just over its low estimates for the sale, Phillips de Pury had a sell by value of 98% and a sell by lot of 83%. With a very carefully selected 35 lots offered, only six artworks failed to find a buyer. However, all of the lots had third party guarantees, of which there were five guarantors.


East Hampton, NY – Nate Lowman, Dan Colen, Rob Pruitt and Piotr Urlanksi: “Holy Crap” at The Fireplace Project through September 17th, 2012

Tuesday, August 21st, 2012

Rob Pruitt – Holy Crap (2012), The Fireplace Project

Continuing in their six year mission to bring noteworthy contemporary art to the Hamptons, The Fireplace Project has opened its doors to New York gallerist and curator Michele Maccarone.   Focusing on a crop of New Yorkers, Maccarone has included works by Nate Lowman, Piotr Urlanski, Rob Pruitt and Dan Colen.  Titled “Holy Crap,” the show examines each artist’s practice of using scrap, detritus and trash in their work.

Dan Colen – Hard Day’s Night (2012), The Fireplace Project


Art Observed Interview with Dan Colen on ‘Out of the Blue, Into the Black’ at Gagosian Paris through July 28, 2012

Monday, July 9th, 2012

In his most recent show at Gagosian Gallery in ParisOut of the Blue, Into the Black, New York based artist Dan Colen  is the second part of a show in memory of his close friend Dash Snow. Out of the Blue, Into the Black continues where Come Out Come Out Wherever You Are (2009) left off, and is comprised of  paintings, installation, and a sculpture. Art Observed’s Jonathan Beer was able to catch up with the artist bef0re the show’s  opening on June 10.


Paris: Dan Colen ‘Out of the Blue, Into the Black’ at Gagosian Gallery through July 28, 2012

Monday, July 9th, 2012

Dan Colen, Out of the Blue, Into the Black (2012), Installation View. All photos courtesy of Gagosian, Paris.

For his inaugural solo show at the Paris Gallery, Gagosian presents the exhibit, “Out of the Blue, Into the Black” featuring new works by Dan Colen. The New York artist, known for his participation in the Downtown art scene of the early 2000s, here memorializes his late friend and fellow artist Dash Snow in a tripartite installation of paintings and sculpture. The exhibition title, as well as those of the objects within it, references the opening and closing songs from Neil Young’s seminal 1979 album, Rust Never Sleeps: “Hey Hey, My My (Into the Black)” and “My My, Hey Hey (Into the Blue)”—confronting the fear of obsolescence and death in an elegiac tribute that is both celebratory and somber, hopeful and despondent.


AO On Site (with video and photoset) – Greenwich, CT: Karen Kilimnick at The Brant Foundation Sunday May 6th, show runs through September 2012

Monday, May 7th, 2012

All photos on site for Art Observed by Samuel Sveen.

Karen Kilimnick is showing at the Brant Foundation in Greenwich, Connecticut. The opening event occurred this Sunday with a preview by founder Peter Brant and a list of other art world notables such as Jeffrey Deitch, Gavin Brown, Julian Schnabel and May Anderson, John McEnroe, Dan Colen, Nate Lowman, Hanna Liden, Elias Hanson, Rikrit Tiravanija, and Elizabeth Peyton amongst other collectors and members of the press. Backing up to the expansive Greenwich Polo Grounds, the event mostly took place outdoors, under and around a tented table area where visitors snacked on steak frites and lamb roasted within view.

Cell phone video of the festivities


AO on site New York – Opening of Bruce High Quality Foundation’s ‘Brucennial 2012′ at 159 Bleecker Street through April 20, 2012

Thursday, March 1st, 2012

All photos by Art Observed by Aubrey Roemer

The “Third and a half” Brucennial opened last night in New York City, the 2012 edition titled, “Harderer. Betterer. Fasterer. Strongerer.” At 159 Bleecker Street, the high-ceilinged art-filled space reached its capacity of 15,000—with a line around the block—shortly after opening its doors at 6 PM. Organized by the anonymous Bruce High Quality Foundation and Vito Schnabel, a large main room, balcony, and basement, were covered with paintings, sculptures, video-works, and other installations by artists both established and less so. Running the gamut from friends of the Bruces to a Damien Hirst spot painting, exhibiting artists of note include Mike Kelley, Cindy ShermanDamien HirstSigmar PolkeJulian Schnabel, Anselm ReyleFrancesco Clemente, Aurel Schmidt, Dan ColenDavid Salle, George Condo, Rashid Johnson, Dash Snow,  Terence Koh,  Richard Prince, Joseph Beuys, Scott Campbell, Keith Haring, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Tom SachsAndy Warhol (collaboration), and Dustin Yellin.

Francesco Clemente


AO On Site Photoset – Art Basel Miami Beach 2011: OHWOW’s ‘It Ain’t Fair’ Satellite Fair, December 1-4, 2011

Tuesday, December 6th, 2011

Agathe Snow, Hear No Evil, See No Evil (2008-2011). All photos on site for Art Observed by Alexandra Bregman.

OHWOW’s It Ain’t Fair lived up to its name as a successful destination apart from the Art Basel main fair last week. Located in Miami’s Design District, the show featured 20 artists in the fourth consecutive curated group show by OHWOW, this year’s theme: Materialism. As explored in Marxist philosophy, materialism at its most literal, tangible entity, focuses on the tactile rather than the abstractly metaphorical. Experimental materials served to manifest the ideology, with David Benjamin Sherry’s sand-filled photograph frame, Justin Beal’s use of plexiglass and plastic wrap, and the unique approach of Angel Otera, peeling and reapplying paint. “There’s not a bad piece in here,” said Operations Director Lydia Ruby. By Saturday evening, the gallery had sold most works on view, and had noted the remarkable curiosity and intellectualism overheard in the showroom.


Go See – Rome: ‘Three Amigos’ with Nate Lowman, Dan Colen, and Dash Snow, through December 11, 2011

Monday, December 5th, 2011

Renowned Italian art dealer Mossimo De Carlo is hosting a series of solo shows from three prolific American artists known collectively as Three Amigos. Centered in Rome, the project features exhibits from Nate Lowman, Dan Colen, and the late Dash Snow, who passed away in 2009. United by their artistic ideas as well as nationality, the ‘Three Amigos’ first made waves as part of the so-called Bowery Collective in New York City.


AO On Site (with Photoset) – Paris: FIAC 2011 Opening Day Review, October 21, 2011

Saturday, October 22nd, 2011

Crowds outside the Grand Palais on the public opening of FIAC, October 21, 2011. All photographs for Art Observed on site by Caroline Claisse.

After two days of previews, FIAC opened its doors to the Paris public on Friday, October 21st. Jill Silverman, Director of Paris/Salzburg-based gallery Thaddaeus Ropac, tells Art Observed that the fair presents “a very good cross section of European collectors.” FIAC is one of the most nationally-focused art fairs, boasting a solid 32% of French exhibitors, whereas last week’s Frieze in London had only 25% British galleries. American presence increased this year with several New York galleries making their debut at the fair: Matthew Marks, Eleven Rivington, Andrew Kreps, Michele Maccarone and Friedrich Petzel. After a 30+year absence, Pace Gallery made a comeback to the fair. Works by seasoned veteran Damien Hirst are exhibited at both White Cube and Gagosian. Anish Kapoor also has work spread across the fair, whose gargantuan installation Leviathan filled the entire interior of the Grand Palais earlier this year. Lisson is showing one of his signature colored concave mirrors in fire-engine red; Kamel Mennour has wine-red, Galeria Continua has green, and Kukje/Tina Kim has purple; all have different price tags. Sales have been strong thusfar; Pace Gallery’s Arne Glimcher told Artinfo, “We had sales right off the bat, it was really fascinating. I hadn’t anticipated this kind of rush, especially in this economy, where Europe is not in as good of shape as America. But I think we have the right artists.” He added, “FIAC is certainly an enormous cut above Frieze.”

Michelangelo Pistoletto, Two Less One (2011) at Galleria Continua

More on site coverage and images after the jump… (more…)

Don’t Miss – New York: Dan Colen and Nate Lowman ‘Love Roses’ at The National Exemplar Gallery through October 21, 2011

Tuesday, October 18th, 2011

Photos via Opening Ceremony

“The possibilities, aesthetic and philosophical alike, are endless,” reads the last sentence of the press release for Love Roses, a show by Dan Colen and Nate Lowman currently on at The National Exemplar Gallery in Manhattan. The sculpture, a beaded curtain fashioned out of small glass tubes containing cloth flowers—that also have been known to double as pipes for smoking crack cocaine—challenges notions of the physicality and temporality of an interactive viewing process, while also calling to mind ideas of reappropriation and originality. After passing through the curtain, visitors encounter a rack of free postcards, featuring photographs of past work by both Colen and Lowman.

More text and images after the jump…


Don’t Miss – Los Angeles: “Post 9-11″ at OHWOW Gallery through August 27th, 2011

Sunday, August 21st, 2011

Ryan McGinley, Tom (Golden Tunnel) (2010), via OHWOW Gallery

On view now through August 27th is “Post 9-11” at Los Angeles’s OHWOW Gallery. The group show features works by  New York-based artists who have in common both their rise to fame in the years since 9/11, and outspoken work that addresses sex, drugs, and the general decadence of the New York art scene at the time. Dan ColenTerence Koh, Hanna Liden, Nate Lowman, Adam McEwen, Ryan McGinley, Agathe Snow, Dash Snow, and Aaron Young  all have work represented in this show that aims to chronicle their relationships, collaborations, and responses to external circumstances of the past decade.

More text and images after the jump…


Go See – London: Dan Colen ‘Come Out Come Out Wherever you Are!’ (featuring work by Hanna Liden) at Carlson Gallery through July 31st, 2011

Tuesday, July 19th, 2011

Dan Colen, Disappearing Act (2011) via Carlson Gallery

New York based artists Dan Colen is currently showing a small but wide-ranging collection of work at the intimate Carlson Gallery. ‘Come Out Come Out Wherever you Are!’  is a multifaceted selection of the artists’ sculptural and photographic work and dedicated to Dash Snow, who died from a heroin overdose in 2009. Exhibited in two conjoining rooms inside a tower block right at the heart of the city, the show’s designation as remembrance of a friend lost injects the work with a poignant endurance. The show also features work by Hanna Liden, a friend and collaborator who is also known as part of the definable group of New York based artists that have been active in the city for the past few years. The show is listed as focusing on the following themes: Religion, Kids Stuff (Death Stuff), Idols and Assholes, Bullshit Magic, Death Stuff (Kids Stuff), Heroin, Erstwhile Boners and/or a Nostalgic Fisting and Re-intarnation.

More text and images after the jump…

AO On Site at the 54th Venice Biennale 2011: Dasha Zukhova and The Garage Center for Contemporary Culture presents “Commercial Break” curated by Neville Wakefield

Monday, June 6th, 2011

Move over vaporetti — there’s a new barge in town. Slated to gracing the banks of the Grand Canal in Venice over the past five days was a project by The Garage Center for Contemporary Culture, entitled “Commercial Break.” The exhibition is organized by Neville Wakefield, a contemporary art writer prolific curator globally. Powered by POST Magazine, “Commercial Break” considers itself to be a provocative architectural intervention in a city where no advertising is traditionally displayed. Unfortunately, as Artinfo reported, the city pulled permits a few days before and the videos were instead screened at the project’s Bauer Hotel party. The woman behind the “GCCC” is Dasha Zukhova, girlfriend of Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich; it is the institution’s second project in Venice.  All videos are now viewable on the exhibition’s website.

Among videos featured is one by  Richard Phillips, starring Lindsey Lohan.

More text and images after the jump…


Go See – New York: ‘Unpainted Paintings’ at Luxembourg & Dayan through May 27th 2011

Friday, May 13th, 2011

Anna Betbeze, Oasis 2011 (2011), via Kate Werble Gallery

Luxembourg & Dayan’s “Unpainted Paintings” is an international survey of Modern artworks from 1950 to today. Organized by Alison Gingeras, chief curator of the Palazzo Grassi in Venice, Italy, “Unpainted Paintings” runs through May 27th.  The show asks viewers to contemplate what makes a painting a painting, displaying works that confound conventional definitions of the medium.

More text and images after the jump… (more…)

Go See – Oslo: Dan Colen ‘Peanuts’ at Astrup Fearnley through April 24, 2011

Wednesday, February 9th, 2011

Dan Colen, Me, Jesus and the Children (2001-2003)

The aftereffects of Dan Colen’s highly publicized, and certainly polarizing breakout show at Gagosian Gallery last fall still resonate.  Though some saw Colen’s show as Icarian, it certainly put the artist on the map for a broader audience.  Astrap Fearnley gallery in Oslo now presents a show that, while displaying works that are certainly less grand and ambitious than the inverted life sized skateboard ramps and toppled motorcycles of the Gagosian show, still has a nicely broad scope of the artist’s works over time.  Chewing gum, oil paint imitating bird droppings, graffiti tags, stills from Disney movies: these are what Dan Colen uses to create his art. Part of the “Bowery School” from downtown New York, Colen creates art from everyday objects and experiences. His painstaking reproductions of recognizable scenes undermine perception, as in The Cloud and the Ghost (The Birds and the Bees), where an impossible ghost rises out of a glass on the bedside table towards a hand holding out pills from a cloud. At the same time, his purposeful randomness takes away the control most expect in art. Astrup Fearnley brings together a collection of a wide range of Colen’s work in his exhibition, Peanuts.

Dan Colen, Don’t Judge a Book by Its Cover (Another Country) (2010)

More text and images after the jump…


AO On Site (with photoset) – New York: Benefit for The Foundation for Contemporary Arts held at Lehmann Maupin Gallery, Lower East Side, Thursday, December 9th, 2010

Friday, December 10th, 2010

Anselm Kiefer, Winter Ade Scheiden Tut Weh Aberdein Scheiden Macht, Dass Mein Herz Lacht (Goodbye, Winter, Parting Hurts But Your Departure Makes My Heart Cheer), 2010
Listed at $100,000

Last night at the Lehmann Maupin Gallery on Chrystie street in the Lower East Side of New York, West-Village-based Foundation for Contemporary Arts held a benefit auction selling nearly 200 paintings and sculptures.  All proceeds went to programs of the FCA, “hoping to assist and encourage innovation, experimentation and potential in the arts,” this year providing 14 grants to artists, of $25k each.

A view from the balcony

The benefit was extremely well attended, with some of the artists joining as well. The large number of works represented a variety of globally well-known artists, including Damien Hirst, Andy WarholJasper JohnsEd RuschaBrice Marden, Francesco ClementeBruce High Quality FoundationJake and Dinos ChapmanJulie Mehretu, James Rosenquist, Roy Lichtenstein, David Salle, Frank StellaElizabeth NeelJulian OpieCecily Brown, Vija Celmins, Robert GoberNate Lowman, Dan ColenDana Schutz, Kara Walker, and T.J. Wilcox, to name a few.

More photos after the jump…


AO On Site, New York – RxArt 2010 annual benefit/auction, Monday November 15th, 2010

Tuesday, November 16th, 2010

Simone de Pury gets down to close a bid from Jen Brill, Kaws and others fill the crowd.  All photos by Caroline Claisse for Art Observed.

Last night was the annual benefit for RxArt, held on 29th Street, just off 6th avenue in Chelsea, New York.  RxArt is a charity organization which fosters ” artistic expression and awareness through the challenging yet rewarding task of engaging patients through contemporary art in healthcare facilities.”  The non-profit organization curates and installs art work, from some of the most recognizable contemporary artists working today, in hospitals and other healthcare locations.   Last night was, again, a success with artist’s work for silent auction along the walls of the event space and with a live auction that took place at 9 o’clock which featured the master of ceremonies Simone de Pury in rare auctioneer form.  The event never fails in gathering many notable artists and art world professionals as attendees, this year bringing Kaws, Dan Colen, Will Cotton, Nate Lowman, Aaron Young, Terry Richardson, Ryan McGinley and others.


AO Guest Editorial/Review by Patrick Meagher of The Silvershed – New York: Dan Colen ‘Poetry’ at Gagosian Gallery, September 10 through October 16, 2010

Monday, September 27th, 2010

Poetry, Dan Colen (2010) via Gagosian

Dan Colen gets past his own (painterly graffiti) writer’s block of a sculptural brick wall (akin to his old urban-artifact based work) and progresses with new strides into the hallowed halls of Gagosian, replete with Gagosian scale, funding, and grandiosity. The gum and grit gestalt gestures are still there but the subject matter has taken a new turn. Namely, Abstraction, and abstraction as abstraction, or “Poetry,” if you will.

The abstract painting at the end of the gallery’s western wall, speaks of a new turn from the artist’s earlier more prosaic if suburbanistic urban-fetish ‘artifactualizations.’ The fashionable bad-boy has entered the brand-building (edifice on 24th street) and even brings with him a painterly painting from the wrong side of the tracks, river, and art history.

More text and images after the jump…


Go See – New York: ‘Skin Fruit: Selections from the Dakis Joannou Collection’ at The New Museum through June 6, 2010

Monday, May 3rd, 2010

Masters of the Universe, Tim Noble & Sue Webster (1998-2000). All photographs by Oskar Proctor for ArtObserved.

“Skin Fruit,” the much-anticipated, Jeff Koons­-curated exhibition featuring million-dollar works by the biggest names in contemporary art continues at the New Museum through June 6, 2010. The New Museum’s questionable decision to exhibit works from the collection of one of its trustees, Greek billionaire Dakis Joannou, resulted in an art world controversy that threatened to upstage the show itself from the very beginning. When a large mix of celebrities and art-world-insiders flooded the Museum for the opening reception – attendees included Cyndi Lauper, U2’s the Edge, and collectors Don and Mera Rubell – the irony of placing the ritzy collection in a museum that was once championed for its promotion of the underdog was only exaggerated. And the critics responded accordingly. Christian Viveros-Fauné lambasted that the show is totally wrong for our times “in just about every possible way.” According to the exhibition press release, the featured works by Franz West, Charles Ray, Matthew Barney, Richard Prince, Robert Gober, Mike Kelley, Paul McCarthy, Tim Noble and Sue Webster, Kiki Smith, Kara Walker, Maurizio Cattelan, Tauba Auerbach, Chris Ofili, Dan Colen and Terence Koh, amongst others, aim to “evoke the tensions between exterior and interior, between what we see and what we consume” – a curatorial spin critics say was invented in an effort to disguise a “rudderless display of art as trophy hunting” as an art exhibition. While this may be true, Skin Fruit essentially offers the common man an opportunity to view important works from one of the finest and most original collections of contemporary art in the world that have rarely, or never been seen in New York.

Revolution Counter-Revolution, Charles Ray (1990/2010)

Photo-essay and full round-up of links after the jump….