On our third day in New York, Tom Bob took us out on a non-fashion-, non-blogging-related excursion. There is nothing like galivanting with a true New Yorker in New York! Someone who knows all the best bars, restaurants, landmarks, art shows, and–in T.B.’s case–has a photographic memory for New York trivia.
“This is where Madonna gets the paper in Desperately Seeking Susan,” he says. “She picks up three papers, throws two down, goes in the store and sells her jacket.”
I mean, how many times has he seen that movie???
Anyway, on Wednesday, went went site-seeing and gallery-hopping. Tom Bob is an accomplished painter and connoisseur of art, in general. I really love his small works on paper:
We made a quick jaunt from T.B.’s apartment on the upper west side, across a snowy Central Park, to The Met. I hadn’t been in years, and it was great to see the Sargents, Pollocks–everything!
The next stop was the Damien Hirst exhibit at Gagosian. You’re not supposed to take pictures, but I snuck this one with my Blackberry:
I wish I would’ve snapped one of the butterfly mandalas and “stained glass” instead–those are my favorites, after the creepy dead things, of course! This particular exhibition featured a real, severed bull’s head preserved in formaldehyde. Kinda terrible, kinda peaceful, kinda funny (its tongue was sticking out slightly, mockingly.) Classic Hirst.
Next, we headed to the meat-packing district, to check out an art show by LA-based “street artist,” Mr. Brainwash.
Installed in a phenomenal and gigantic warehouse space with two floors, the Warhol-esk paintings, sculptures, and prints were flanked with posh Design Within Reach-style modern furniture. (Particularly awesome, when you’ve been trolling Manhattan, trying to keep up with Tom “The Fastest Walker” Bob all day!)
The work is controversial due to its contrived style and subject matter. Tom Bob maintains that this is an intentional joke, and I’d tend to agree. Whether literal art or not, the show, entitled Icons, is captivating because of it’s pop-y familiarity and inclusion of all your favorites: silkscreened and paint-splattered prints of Madonna, Tom Ford, Galliano, Basquiat, and Kate Moss hang in a grid-like pattern on brightly-primed walls.
We had a fun time picking our our faves and identifying the more obscure icons of the pack.
“Who’s that, Teeb? William Burroughs?”
“No, that’s Norman Rockwell!”
I knew nothing about the artist, beforehand, and he was impressively friendly and delightfully French (being a mono-lingual American, I love anything with an accent!)
After scoring some signed posters, which the artist assured us we could sell on eBay with his blessing (“I don’t mind: You get what you need,” he told us. “You need art, you get art. You need a car, you get money.”) we ventured back out into the streets, where this fab window sucked me into the Moschino store:
Our final destination in the meat-packing district was the Alexander McQueen store. We just wanted to, like, pay our respects, or whatever. When we walked in the door, the over-powering scent of several sprays of slightly-wilted lilies made me instantly tear up.
When I posted about McQueen’s death a couple weeks ago, I titled the entry “RIP McQueen,” but I’ve noticed Betsey Johnson and others declaring “Long Live Mcqueen” and I like that sentiment better.