“Rotten Romance” and “Eat My Memoir” are moving to Substack, a newsletter platform that will allow me to reach a larger audience. If you are interested in seeing the archive and subscribing,
click HERE.

UNDER THE RADAR

A spotlight for members.

Chandrika Marla

Recent Feature

Fantasy Curating: Beyond the Book

Fantasy Curating: Beyond the Book

By Iain Machell Think of a book and you usually have a specific image in mind, probably a codex form (pages bound in the center) with some combination of text and images, meant to be read from left to right. But when you list the components of a book, pick apart that...

read more

Photography Portfolio

James Cowlin: Consider the Cactus

James Cowlin: Consider the Cactus

James Cowlin’s career as a landscape photographer began in 1978, when he was awarded the first fellowship for artists from the Arizona Commission on the Arts. The grant was for $5,000, and as he notes, “That was a lot of money in those days.” Since the funds could be...

read more

From the Vasari21 Archives

Jeff Baker: Urban Abstractions

When I first saw Jeff Baker’s photos, at his home and studio in Taos, NM, about five years ago, I immediately thought of Aaron Siskind, the photographer most closely associated with mid-century American abstraction. In many of his black-and-white images, Siskind...

Girl, Unexpectedly Interrupted

In which I try to have a romance with an older man, a real artist. But Mother knows better. During my last semester in college, I worked part time at the university store (fondly known as the “screw store” for its inflated prices on stuff like toothpaste and shampoo)....

Retail Therapy from Artists

Need an affordable but impressive gift? Got empty shelves and wall space? Artists come to the rescue.... These are tough times for everyone, but especially for artists who have lost teaching gigs, commissions, and gallery shows. Small wonder some are turning to online...

They Cried. They Gasped. But No One Fainted.

How Critics and Curators Respond to Memorable Works of Art In a recent issue of The New Yorker, actress Allison Janney reported of her first encounter with Wassily Kandinsky’s Black Lines (1913) in the Guggenheim Museum: “I felt an energy go through my chest." I could...

Ripe for Rediscovery: Thomas Child

Rare photos from the 1870s give a glimpse into an ancient civilization on the brink of change Her face framed by an ornate tasseled headdress, the bride looks eager and expectant and maybe a little scared. Her groom seems more confident, certainly more relaxed. You...

It’s Not What I Expected I Would Do

An Artist Opens her New Home and Studio for ArtWalk Kingston By Millicent Young I had just landed in Kingston, NY, in early July with Niko, the dog of Perpetual Joy, and the four cats, a long chapter of life in rural Virginia completed. I was moving into my new...

Writing into the Gap

How to get a grip when a work of art leaves you almost speechless By Millicent Young It happened again. Within seconds: scalp tingling, forearms in goose bumps, the held breath released and then tears. I am in a gallery seeing Ursula von Rydingsvard’s work on a...

The Fate of the Art at the Four Seasons

Photo credits: bottom of pageOver the holidays, I learned from a friend that the venerable Four Seasons  Restaurant in the landmark Seagram Building on Park Avenue would be closing this summer. I was a little late to that news, and it is not technically about to be...

Still More Residencies….

Located in the Chiang Mai province of northern Thailand, ComPeung offers residencies from two weeks to three months on spectacular grounds comprising 2.8 acres of fishing lakes, forests, and mountains as part of what the website calls the country’s “first...

How are you? No, I mean, really, how are you?

Artists talk about altered states during the pandemic We are now about seven months into a worldwide catastrophe that has affected nearly every fiber and facet of our being. Many of us have been sheltering in place, limiting our contacts with the outside world,...

Archived Feature

Going Postal

Going Postal

400-plus American Artists Collaborate to Protest Trump’s Threat to Privatize the U.S. Post Service By Melissa Stern This past January, Donald Trump began muttering about privatizing the U.S. Postal Service. By April, as the necessity for mail-in voting took hold...

read more

Archived Feature

We Can Get There from Here

We Can Get There from Here

An Artist Reflects on Drawing During Tumultuous Times By Christine Taylor Patten When Pennsylvania’s votes were counted and the welcome winner of the 2020 presidential election was called early the next morning, I missed the excitement at first, having finally slept a...

read more

Archived Feature

The Monuments Contest: And the Winners Are (Part One)

The Monuments Contest: And the Winners Are (Part One)

Everyone is a winner in the competition to replace those tired, toppled memorials In the wake of the murder of George Floyd in May, protesters around the globe tore down monuments to the Confederacy, to slave traders, and to racist baddies of all stripes. I could not...

read more

Archived Under the Radar

Robert Parker

Robert Parker

By the time he was twelve, Robert Parker had discovered his twin passions in life. Having read about Frank Lloyd Wright, Mies van der Rohe, and other master builders as a kid, he determined on architecture as a career. But he was drawn to the visual arts as well and...

read more

Archived Under the Radar

Peri Schwartz

Peri Schwartz

Peri Schwartz’s affinity for the subjects that have preoccupied her for decades started when she was growing up in Far Rockaway, a seaside neighborhood in Queens, NY. She would set up objects to draw when her parents went out on a Saturday night so they could see...

read more

 Archived Podcast

Alice Robb: Why We Dream

Alice Robb: Why We Dream

In the summer of 2011, science writer Alice Robb discovered a book called Exploring the World of Lucid Dreaming, which promised readers that they could control the plots of their dreams.

read more