Oh, sleepy Chelsea summer…what better time for a massively overstuffed group show in which all the work is about sex? “The Double Dirty Dozen (& Friends),” which manages to simultaneously sound like both an animated children’s show and a gonzo porn film, opens this evening at New York’s Freight + Volume. We’ll be there, drinking ice cold canned beer and getting accidentally groped by what’s sure to be a very dense, artistically aroused crowd.Above is Paul Brainard’s work for the show, The Birth of Tim Tebow. Other participants includeJules de Balincourt, Ryan Schneider, Russell Tyler, Nicole Wittenberg, Daniel Heidkamp, Jennifer Sullivan, Tom Sanford, Jazz-minh Moore, and a whole bunch more. If you can’t come tonight–insert immature chuckle here–these highbrow perversions are on view through September 22.
What happens when you invite 50 artists, described as "rabble-rousers" in the press release, to make art about sex — whether dirty, funny or just plain bizarre? Well, in a playful exhibition entitled, "The Double Dirty Dozen (& Friends)," you get a large sign on the door that states, "No One Under 18 Admitted."The show's title references the 1967 take-no-prisoners war film "The Dirty Dozen" by Robert Aldrich, in which a gang of ex-cons join forces for the impossible mission of assassinating German war criminals. Freight + Volume Gallery ditches the weapons for wit as the group of artists embarks on the debatably comparable mission of representing sex in a manner that will shock and titillate the most jaded libidos.The challenge at hand requires a lot more than NSFW body parts to make us blush... and we have to say, mission accomplished. For example Paul Brainard's horrifying work, "The Birth of Tim Tebow" features the pretty and pure football player emerging from a porn star's family jewels. Also, the Doritos logo is pictured, which makes the scene even worse. But more off-putting (in a good way) than the pop-political jabs are the scenarios which amp up the silly. Johnston Foster's "El Natural" makes literal the dirty old man who appears like R. Crumb's Mr. Natural was hanging out withTom Hanks in Cast Away.Is sex in art still shocking? Maybe so, maybe not, but we certainly find it funny, strange and worth exploring. We are happy to visit any exhibition where outcasts are glorified and artists are invited to push the envelope a bit, letting freak flags everywhere fly freely."The Double Dirty Dozen (& Friends)" will show at Freight + Volume in New York until September 22, 2012.
"MIE: A Portrait by 35 Artists," on view through Feb. 25 at Freight + Volume gallery in Chelsea, is one of the more unusual group surveys of the new season, and casts a fresh light on the venerable theme of artist and model. The show includes a few star artists (Alex Katz, Robert Frank), many who have stirred recent critical interest (Ryan Schneider, Kurt Kauper, Andrew Guenther, David Humphrey), one pop-cult figure (Paul D. Miller, aka DJ Spooky) and several participants who, well-known abroad, are emerging in the West (Lin Yilin, Noritoshi Hirakawa, Qi Zhilong). Even more striking is the curatorial approach. The exhibition was co-organized by gallery owner Nick Lawrence with the portrait subject herself—Mie Iwatsuki, a Japanese-born model and independent curator who has lived in New York since 1999.
Interview conducted with the artist on the occasion of the opening of "Living Dead" at Dvorak Sec Contemporary in Prague Czech Republic.