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July 26 2014

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27 posts tagged "Cynthia Rowley"

A Bright Spot In January

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Bold strokes of black acrylic paint and built-up fluorescent polymer gel isn’t what you would expect from a painter based in the French countryside, but Hermann Amann isn’t one for conventionality. “He’s such an interesting man; you can’t even have a conversation with him without him suddenly talking about colors or going over his work out loud,” curator Alexis Dahan said at last night’s opening for the 76-year-old artist. Up for the next three weeks at Half Gallery, Fluorescence is the first U.S. show for Amann, but Dahan, a photographer whose own work has been featured in Purple and W magazines, was attracted to Hermann’s oeuvre early on. “I was his secretary when I was 17,” Dahan explained. “I realized then that I couldn’t be a painter myself. I saw what it took; you can’t just make painting your hobby.”

With wintry conditions on both sides of the Atlantic, the German-born painter couldn’t make his own show, but had he made the hop, he would have been greeted by admirers such as Justin Giunta, Cynthia Rowley, and model Coco Young. “Those bold colors are what caught my eye first,” Half Gallery owner Bill Powers began. “I was walking past Alexis’ office and he had one of Hermann’s paintings up. That’s how the show idea came about.” Young, who’s served as painter John Currin’s muse, offered a like-minded observation: “It’s nice to see a bright pop of color in the middle of winter.”

Fluorescence runs until January 22 at Half Gallery, 208 Forsyth St., NYC, www.halfgallery.com.

Canvassing The Web

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Soon you, too, can own a Richard Phillips—even if you can’t afford his usual six-figure prices. The new Exhibition A (members’ only, technically, but with open registration) offers editions, printed on canvas, of works by artists like Phillips (whose Spectrum painting famously reached a new audience recently after appearing on Gossip Girl), Hanna Liden, and Terence Koh—for between $100 and $500. Gallerist Bill Powers (left, with wife Cynthia Rowley), who co-founded the site, explained that his goal was to help turn young art appreciators into bona fide collectors. “Really the idea sprung up because of my niece who goes to Cal Arts,” he explained. “It’s affordable enough that she can buy something. And it can be a point of entry for new collectors. Sometimes people don’t know how to get started.”

Powers, who currently runs Half Gallery in the city, teamed with Rowley, Laura Martin, and Gabby Munoz on the project. The key to the low prices isn’t the membership (signing up is gratis), but rather the unique open-edition format: Works are available for sale for a limited time rather than by numbered edition, which also keeps the artists’ galleries happy. For the opening, participants like Liden, Phillips, Rene Ricard, and photographer Mark Borthwick (designer Maria Cornejo’s other half) all made the rounds. “Bill chose the canvases, which worked out perfectly for me,” Borthwick said of his pieces, available now on the site. “I’m a typical Libra. I don’t ever wish to choose.” Those willing to wait it out until the new year will have even more options, including pieces by Jim Drain, Olivier Zahm, and Terence Koh. Koh, in typical enfant terrible form, riffed off his notorious Big White Cock (a white neon light in the shape of a rooster) by screening the outline onto black canvas.

If it wasn’t your usual fashion crowd, designer Cynthia Rowley felt right at home with the industry crossover. “Before I was ever in fashion, I was in art schoolᾹI was a painter,” she said. “Now I draw mostly. But doing things like this…it’s like getting to hang out with all my friends.”

Photo: Joe Schildhorn/BFAnyc.com

Let’s Dance

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En pointe is on trend. We saw the germ of balletomania in the Spring collections in New York and Paris, where Hannah MacGibbon at Chloé showed bodysuits and wispy, tutulike skirts, Gilles Mendel tapped Christian Louboutin to customize shoes with ballerina ankle laces, and Cynthia Rowley borrowed her set pieces from NYCB ballet master Peter Martins. And what began on the runway is starting to take shape in the street, too. Opening Ceremony has just opened its dance-inspired Repetto shop-in-shop at its 35 Howard Street store, where pirouetting mannequins offer every variety of the classic dancers’ flat (pictured). MacGibbon’s version will hit stores, too, come spring—her brilliant vermilion model is one of the many you’ll find in our new Accessories Index when it launches next week. Don’t expect the trend to let up any time soon. The much anticipated, Rodarte-costumed ballet drama Black Swan, which has been making the festival rounds for what feels like years, finally comes to U.S. theaters in December.

Photo: Courtesy of Openign Ceremony

Art School Is In Session

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From teacher’s pet to art-world enfant terrible? “I was a good student,” Terence Koh (left) insisted at Friday night’s Re:Form School kickoff. Playing host for the Bing- and Shepard Fairey-led pop-up art exhibition and education awareness initiative, Koh even decided to dress the part—well, at least within his usual aesthetic. He wore his trademark all-white getup, this time with an exaggeratedly oversize collegiate blazer. “See, I’m sort of dressed for school, aren’t I?” he said. “It’s nice to be back in school.”

That sentiment was felt quite literally. The exhibit was held at St. Patrick’s Old Cathedral School in Nolita (recently shuttered for financial reasons), and it drew a crowd of those you’d imagine as the cool kids in school: Cynthia Rowley, Chiara Clemente, and Tatiana von Furstenberg among them. Not everyone was as “good” as Koh—”Oh, I was quite naughty,” Lady Alice St. Clair-Erskine mused, while checking out the artwork—but they were all there for a good cause. The exhibition raises awareness about the need for public education reform, and artists like Fairey, Swoon, Chris Johanson, and Faile all contributed to the show. Rosie Perez, a native New Yorker, felt the whole experience quite personally. “I was one of those kids, one those kids who went to school with hunger pains. I was one of those kids that was ignored,” the actress told the audience. “No one noticed that I was extremely intelligent—don’t mind my accent. The only thing that separates a privileged child and underprivileged child is opportunity.”

Photo: Neil Rasmus/Billy Farrell Agency

David LaChapelle Celebrates His Own Personal Jesus

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David LaChapelle has his own way of doing an art opening. Last night at Paul Kasmin Gallery, for the vernissage of his American Jesus show, he had cameos from Julian Schnabel and Lenny Kravitz (pictured above, with LaChapelle) and a crowd of people photographing him as he danced—in a white caftan, no less. As it happened, there was a Jersey Shore party going on at the same time next door at Marquee—”probably a metaphor for my life,” LaChapelle shrugged.

That life is a busy one at the moment, with Chelsea the latest stop on the attention-getting show’s world tour. The abridged American Jesus exhibition at Paul Kasmin puts extra focus on three photos depicting the late Michael Jackson (well, a lookalike) as Christ and features a striking image of Naomi Campbell as Cleopatra. A broadly expanded version of the show opens at the Tel Aviv Museum of Art later this month. “It’s going to go on until people don’t want to see it any more, I guess,” LaChapelle said at the Standard’s High Line Room, where he was joined by the likes of Cynthia Rowley and Rory Tahari for the post-opening dinner. Speaking of going on, so did the party—the LaChapelle crew adjourned upstairs to the Boom Boom Room for some postprandial dancing, where they mixed with the likes of Yigal Azrouël and J.Crew’s Jenna Lyons. It was the last Boom, so to speak—the final late night of BBR revelry before the space is reborn as a private club after the summer. LaChapelle’s own take on resurrection? “I believe that there’s more to me than what’s contained between my hat and my shoes,” he said.

Photo: Shaun Mader/Patrick McMullan