February 2023: News roundup

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9th Annual Black History Month Exhibition

The Gilroy Center for the Arts is announcing its 9th Annual Black History Month Art Exhibition titled, “Through Their Lens.” This exhibition celebrates African American Photographers who have documented and captured the African American Experience, featuring past and present events addressing important principles of liberty, democracy, and justice of black lives and their experiences. Agora Artist Louise Shields is the producer and curator of the exhibition.

An Odyssey of Fire: Mike Henderson’s Long-Lost Paintings About the Rage of the ’70s Reemerge

In 1985 Mike Henderson’s studio caught on fire and the paintings he had made during the 1960s and 70s were thought to be destroyed. These artworks were significant as they poured the fear and angst of the era. It was rumored around 2018 that these paintings may not have been destroyed, which intrigued Dan Nadel, a curator at the Jan Shrem and Maria Manetti Shrem Museum of Art. Nadel had arranged a studio visit with Henderson, where these early lost works were mentioned and upon discussion, Nadel was asked by the artist if he wanted to see them. All the artworks were heavily damaged by a mix of dirt, mold, and ash. They were subsequently cleaned up, and for the first time in decades, they are now on view to the public through June 25th, in a solo show at the Manetti Shrem Museum.

Love it or Leave it, I Will Love it if You Leave it by Mike Henderson
Mike Henderson, Love it or Leave it, I Will Love it if You Leave it, 1976 Photo: Robert Divers Herrick

Hangama Amiri’s Kaleidoscopic Textile Art Summons the Strength of Women in Afghanistan

Rendered in a kaleidoscopic palette of jewel-tone fabrics, thick muslins, sturdy cotton, delicate chiffons, rich velvets, and shimmering satins, Hangama Amiri’s large-scale tapestry Bazaar (2020) evokes her neighborhood market in Kabul, Afghanistan. Amiri pays particular attention to shops for women as a way to foreground the centrality of women’s lives in contemporary Afghan society, which is the heart of economic and cultural life, but it is also a public space shaped by the political environment and ever-shifting regulations leveraged against women and their autonomy.

Anish Kapoor’s Bean Sculpture in New York

Anish Kapoor’s sculpture, Mini-Bean, is a 19-foot-high, 40-ton “mini-Bean,” that sits at 56 Leonard Street in the Tribeca neighborhood of Manhattan. It is carefully wedged into the luxury tower’s exterior so that only residents can view all its sides evoking the Cloud Gate Sculpture in Chicago. The public is unsure who the sculpture is made for as viewers can only experience the sculpture partially. Furthermore, it lacks an official name, and rumors claim there will be a naming ceremony in the spring. There’s something far more insidious about the mini-Bean than initially meets the eye.

Anish Kapoor’s mini-Bean has finally arrived after years in the making
Anish Kapoor’s mini-Bean has finally arrived after years in the making.

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Banksy’s Startling Valentine’s Day Mural Exposes Domestic Violence as a Dark Reality

Banksy has unveiled a new mural titled Valentine’s Day mascara, highlighting the fight against domestic violence on the morning of Valentine’s Day. The work appeared overnight on a white brick wall in the British seaside town of Margate, one of the most economically deprived areas of Kent. The mural depicts a woman dressed as a 1950s housewife tossing a man into a real abandoned freezer, around which Banksy created the work. The woman in a blue checkered dress, apron, and yellow household rubber gloves has a broken tooth and a black eye probably caused by a punch. She appears to be enacting her revenge on her abuser, while only his legs are visible, sticking out from the end of the freezer.

Valentine’s Day mascara by Banksy
Banksy, Valentine’s Day mascara (2023). Credit @banksy.


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