Thursday, September 20, 2007

Earthworks for your ring finger

Christine J. Brandt ring

A year or so ago, I was reading one of Village Voice writer Lynn Yeager's articles. In it, she talked about the role that that art plays in fashion, and fashion plays in art. She also made the observation that often; she will prefer a couture gown, or a design from an "outsider designer" to contemporary art. Now, while I don't necessarily agree wholeheartedly, I do think that there is veracity in the idea that sometimes the craftsmanship of fashion trumps that of its artistic counterparts.

So when I saw the jewelry from Christine J. Brandt, in addition to taking my breath away, it struck me as really authentic (authentic meaning thoughtful, articulate and true to a vision) work that balances on the line between fashion and art. The raw material contrasting with the highly realized wood base is (to my mind) reminiscent of earthworks and other installation pieces that can normally only be enjoyed in situ or in a photograph, while this, one can wear. That being said, with prices in the low thousands, it might be the photographs that get enjoyed yet.

And in a delightful coincidence, Lynn Yeager just wrote a piece about a photography show of rockers cum photographers, curated by Lou Reed. I tend to be suspicious of these shows, as its hard to celebrate the artistic vision of someone whose technical skill might be good, but whose vision, is, for lack of a better description: as trite as freshmen college students'.

However, what these shows might lack in artistic merit, they more than make up for in prurience. Unlike the paparazzi shots, or TMZ videos, these shots are composed and intimate, the subjects in a relaxed and informal setting. In this respect they are reminiscent of a suite of images that Warhol shot in the late 70s. They were shown at J. Johnson, and the fact that they were celebrity snapshots, by a celebrity artist made them of passing interest, but not necessarily art...more like artifacts.,yaeger,77843,15.html

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