Monday, April 23, 2018

What A Weekend! Crits! Art! Reptiles!

Snakes at Reptile Expo!

Do you ever have a weekend and it is so packed and full of fun you think you might explode? I just had one of those weekends. Here it is in a blitz of a post.


Went to work and then went to Columbia to do a group crit with first year MFAs. A friend of mine is in the program so it was super fun and relaxed but it was also a nice format to talk about art and meet new people. Going uptown on the 1 was sort of a manic panic but after an hour ride, ta-da, I arrive in one piece. They set up in a large room with works by three artists on display. There were casual beers and bags of chips and popcorn. We focused on each artist’s work for 45 minutes. I love doing studio visits and talking about art so I talked a lot. The work was interesting, the conversations got looser and louder as the evening went on.

It’s funny when you talk with artists that are currently in a program because they are in this strange in-between state of their practice and in a school setting they are on over drive experimentation and exploration mode. It’s great to see and allows for quick ideas and things to not be over thought out, thus sometimes fresher and more enlivened but also it can be a bit too much too fast. It’s all okay though. Safe spaces to make art and to go left or right field, or even in the weeds, is so good for artists to experience. I felt really lucky to be able to glimpse and to talk about their work that was in such a vulnerable stage.

We then went to after drinks/food at a nearby restaurant. The Upper West Side is a weird place. Feels like it’s a whole different part of NYC that I just don’t know/get but that’s interesting to feel sometimes. We talked more and it was really nice to see how people in a program become microcosm families. It’s like summer camp, or those magic times where time/place/circumstance smooshes people together and you open up more because you have to and then you realize you want and needed to.


Vegged out and took it easy in the morning and early afternoon to regenerate from the week before. Went gallery hopping in Lower East Side and Chinatown! Went to my fave places and shows I wanted to see and it was good to get an injection of art. Gallery hopped with someone who never gallery hopped before! That seemed so novel to me, I guess I have been doing it so much for so long it’s like a thing I think everyone did/should do but yeah, I guess not. Went to about 10 shows. The best were Em Rooney at Bodega (full disclosure, I’m super partial to her work) and Cici Wu at 47 Canal. Cici’s show was a true delight because I didn’t know anything about her or her work and it was quiet, subtle and poetic in just the ways I like/didn’t know I like.

Walking around LES is also fun because you can pop in and out of shops and just kind of meander around which makes the slog feel less sloggy sometimes.

Post galleries one needs refreshments! Went to Little Italy because irony is sometimes the only cure for serious art-ing. Ordered calamari and house red wine. Picked up the largest apple I have seen in my life as a gag gift. Walked to a restaurant where someone we knew worked. Gave him gag apple and had some yummy vino and more food. It was cool. There was someone famous there that I didn’t know (she was in Arrested Development).

Went to Brooklyn and met friends at a bar. It’s funny how people overlap. I knew one person for a long time and someone else knew them and another person that was there a long time but we all didn’t know we knew each other. It was cute. Lots of vodka sodas and talking about art since they were all artists. Some conversations heated but in a good way. People left to pursue the possibilities of love. Felt like the night was sexy and it was.


Hung-over but excited and determined to go to the Reptile Expo in White Plains New York! Met with gal pals and took Metro North up. Someone made the most amazing train snax in the world. Talked about health issues and felt warmth of camaraderie with womankind. Arrive at Reptile Expo and everyone incredibly excited.

So many reptiles! So much to see! Was really intense and crowded but was not too much and not too big. After a while snakes and things get repetitious but still cool. Get reptile overload after a few hours. It reminded me of going to an art fair. Sometimes the eyes/brain can handle only so much stimulation.

Meet up with other friends there and take pictures on the steps. It’s funny to be on an outing. Walk to a diner and eat suburban food and talk about matters of the heart and it feels like we are all in a coven of warmth and support. Feels nice to feel a part of something.

Take train back to city and go to a showroom of young hip designers’ clothing collection. Friends, so chill and relaxed vibes. Try on clothes. Contemplate purchases.

Exhausted. Home. Roommate having party and playing the Smiths on repeat so need to escape! Eat lo mein. Eat ice cream. Fall asleep at 10pm. What a perfect thing life can be sometimes.