Our weekly focus on the moving image and art in the streets. And other oddities.
Now screening: Dylan on Deitch: Reinventing the Experience of Art, and SANER MXDF .
BSA Special Feature: Dylan on Deitch:
Reinventing the Experience of Art
“The best art re-invents art for the next generation, but in addition, it references the long tradition that goes before.”
Jeffrey Deitch for President! In this new video interview with the departing director of Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (MOCA), film maker Jesse Dylan (yes) creates a warm and human six minute re-iteration of Deitch’s core appreciation for the magnificence of art and its power to transform. The video, popping somewhat out of nowhere a week after his announced cordial departure, is not quite “A Town Called Hope”, but you can imagine this running over a bed of thoughtfully plinking piano keys just before soaring with the eagles and the candidate emerging onto a starkly lit stage to the swelling of applause.
A polarizing figure in the art world for people who questioned his appointment there from the beginning and the appropriateness of a commercially successful gallery owner/showman taking over the helm of such an institution, from this perspective it looks like Deitch has stayed true to one of his core interests – exposing new work to new audiences and challenging conventional wisdom on how to engage, and who with. Much of our own abiding love for Street Art and graffiti is based on the concept that traditional purveyors of wisdom or art criticism have no place in its curation whatsoever.
“Art in the Streets”, although obviously a programmed exhibition, succeeded in mowing down the protests of many who steadfastly resisted giving such formal recognition to the impact and backstory of graffiti and Street Art on the culture and accepted canons of art. Everyone knew it would be a messy endeavor, and given the entrenched classism, racism, and gatekeeping that tripped wires for months, it succeeded on many levels nonetheless. So, this marriage didn’t work out, and in this country more than half of them end. No one will deny his unique vision and given his comfort with discomfort and curiosity for how people can engage with art, only a fool would think Deitch won’t be breaking new ground for exploration in the future.
“Art creates community experience, spiritual experience. The best art absolutely affects the way people see, understand the world and builds a sense of tolerance, openness, appreciation for different points of view.”
– Jeffrey Deitch
Top image: Screenshot of Jeffrey Deitch combined with a partial derivation of a piece by Fernand Léger (image © Jesse Dylan)
SANER MXDF – Mexico City
And in that same vein, prepare to be blown away by Mexican artist Saner, who embodies the true sense of inquisitive engagement and reverence for history while exploring new ways to connect. Through his own observations and study and romance with the Mexican mural art tradition, graffiti, Street Art, and his sense of magic realism, Saner shows us how to be fully engaged and question our own motivations.
In the translation here he says, “If you do not know what you are doing, or don’t have something to tell or say; a piece of yourself, a gift to the people, then what you are doing is cold, lifeless.”