Editor’s Note

Life Drawing via Zoom

Life Drawing via Zoom

Drawing from the live, nude model has been the mainstay of artists at least since the Renaissance, and the tradition has been kept alive in academies that still value the kind of eye-hand coordination that can only come from careful study of the complicated apparatus...

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The Last of Marty (a Christmas Memory)

The Last of Marty (a Christmas Memory)

It’s a question people habitually ask in a place like Taos: How did you wind up (or, alternatively, end up) here? The connotations of that inquiry always feel to me somewhat negative, as though you’ve hit rock bottom and are staying at the YWCA in downtown Newark. But...

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How to Talk to a Reporter

How to Talk to a Reporter

How to Talk to a Reporter Yes, believe it or not, it can happen to you—or maybe it already has. A writer from a local newspaper, an arts magazine, or perhaps, one day, even The New York Times will give a call or send an email, saying she wants to talk to you for a...

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Savage Studio Visits

Savage Studio Visits

Be careful whom you invite As readers know from my adventures with a material called Dura-Lar and “Confessions of a Closet Painter,” I spend about ten hours a week in a corner of my friend TJ Mabrey’s studio, messing around with paint and affixing bits of the...

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Where Is the Me in #MeToo?

Where Is the Me in #MeToo?

Searching for a younger self When all the evidence of men misbehaving (Weinstein, Rose, Lauer, Close, and countless others) began spilling into the press last year, sexual harassment and sexual assault became a prime topic of discussion among women friends. I listened...

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A Progress Report

A Progress Report

Where are we, what are we doing, where are we going? I can remember when and where I first conceived the idea for Vasari21. I was staying in my friend Barbara Rachko’s apartment over the holidays in December 2015, while she was traveling in South America, and though...

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How to Be an Art Star

How to Be an Art Star

Some cynical, perplexed, and possibly spot-on observations “Art star.” It’s a deplorable term, I know, but it’s out there as a label to describe those who have achieved a shining spot in the galaxy, commanding huge sums at auction, getting the nod from major critics,...

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Further Thoughts on Collecting

Further Thoughts on Collecting

Some unsolicited advice from a rank amateur I recently read online an excerpt from The Orange Balloon Dog: Bubbles, Turmoil and Avarice in the Contemporary Art Market, the latest book from economist and art market commentator Don Thompson, which will be available in...

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The Biennial Brouhaha

The Biennial Brouhaha

Protests at the Whitney raise questions about race, politics, and bad painting In case you missed it, the big art-world kerfuffle of the week, possibly of the season, happened following the launch of the 2017 Whitney Biennial last week when several artists took...

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How NOT To Collect

How NOT To Collect

A few cautionary tales In the years between acquiring a master’s degree in art history—and burning out on the prospect of becoming an art historian—I did a number of reasonably adult things. I got married. I held down a series of editorial jobs with magazines that...

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The Limits of Protest Art

The Limits of Protest Art

What can it really do? While driving home from Albuquerque on Thursday, terrified and disgusted by the news on the radio, I popped in a CD from an audiobook that had been languishing in my back seat for weeks. Picasso’s War, by Oliver Wyman, tells the story of the...

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Confessions of a Cranky Critic

Confessions of a Cranky Critic

Yes, I have been living under a rock. And I'm proud of it. When I read, a few days ago, that Helen Marten had been named the 2016 winner of the Turner Prize, Britain’s biggest accolade in contemporary art, I drew a big fat blank. “Helen who?” was my response. And...

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