The Audience and the Eavesdropper

At the Phillips de Pury & Company Gallery on 450 W15th St, a friend and I saw the show which shares the title of this post.  Its subtitle was New Art from India and Pakistan.  Ten artists were featured in the show.  There was a sculpture that looked like a huge pre-historic lizard comprised of pink plastic bottles in the central space connecting the different works.  It was shocking to say the least.  But, it was not interesting after the shock wore off.  All that was left for us to experience was an appreciation for the amount of time and patience it must have taken to create something so . . . pink.  That sculpture is going for $200,000 by Thukral and Tagra.  Have at it friends.  Their website (  features much more visually challenging work.

Probir Gupta and Samaraenda Raj Singh were my favorite of the show.  Gupta’s work shown below had three paintings in the show. This one reminded me a bit of Basquiat and in hindsight,

of another show I saw later that day.  But, the compressed space and the multitudinous bodies produce a vitality that none of the other artists had in the show.  It is perfect for us city folk.

Probir Gupta

Acrylic and Iron Oxides on Canvas. 90 x 156 in.

Samaraenda Raj Singh had a painting ( the others were not up yet?) that took my breath away.  It was at the end of this long hall.  Not only was the natural light bright and perfect for reflecting the foil which is not visible here, the sheer scale of the work took you in to its bosom.

Holy Spangle, 2008

Oil, Acrylic and Foil on Canvas. 72 x 144 in.

I definitely recommend seeing the show because it is not often we get to see top artists of other regions in the world without traveling there.  Seriously, I had to go to London to see Latin America’s best photographers?  Really?!?!

As a result of my education as a fine arts major, I am a little traditional and I only liked the paintings.   I didn’t like the installations, or the video with the haunting soundtrack from Requiem for a Dream.   Well, that’s not true because I loved Nick Cave.  And it doesn’t get any more unconventional than this:


At the Jack Shainman Gallery (513 West 20th St)  where I saw Carrie Mae Weems’ show nearly a year ago, I happened across this place again in my jaunt through Chelsea on Saturday.  Look at this sculpture!  They are human size, there are a ton of them, and they are bursting with colorful bits of everything.  This is definitely a must-see show.  I kept roaming through there thinking these stockings and blankets are like something one would find in an old lady’s house thrown about.  But, at the same time, they are covering people up.  They are being domesticated with these homely decorations.  This sculpture installation show really freaked me out at first, as it should, but then I was fascinated by its pure exoticism.  And I think there’s a reason the mannequins are Black.

Yup, I got your number, Nick Cave.

Go! See these shows.


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