Chelsea Galleries & The Whitney / by Cornelius

On Friday, September 25th, we visited various galleries in Chelsea and also got to see the new Whitney Museum of American Art. I have to admit, I was a little nervous commuting into the city this week in light of the terror attacks that occurred in both New York and New Jersey but my fear subsided as the day went on. It helped that I was distracted by seeing amazing art. 

We went to a bunch of galleries in Chelsea so it is hard to recall all of them--some artists didn't stand out at all to me but that is to be expected on a daily basis. Not every person's works resonates with everyone. One of the first shows we saw was called Dark Matter by an artist named Sarah Cain. This show stood out to me for two reasons. The first reason was her use of colors. Walking into the gallery, you were bombarded with color, the floors were covered with vibrant works that consuming the art much more enjoyable due to its interactive attribute. This use of color didn't stop on the floor...her hung canvases were just the right kind of colorful for me. It was also pretty cool how she incorporated jewelry in her painting, giving it a unique draping effect across the painted pieces. The second reason why this show stood out to me was because it was in the same gallery where I saw Yoko Ono's show. Sarah's work, reminded me of how interactive Ono's show was. I think it is a very useful tool to express an idea to a viewer if you can involve them in the work of art within a space.

Later on, we went to another showing of Richard Serra's work at the Gagosian. In my opinion, he never disappoints. I'm typically all about a very graphic and colorful--almost cartoony--style of art, but I am just always in awe at the immensity of his work. It just makes me feel so small within the space. It is interesting because I don't typically think about my size in relation to a work of art. I do have to say that the work we saw at Dia:Beacon was much more captivating to me because we were able to walking inside of it but hey, I never before thought I would enjoy looking at large steel rectangles, until Serra put them in front of me.

At the Whitney, It was really cool to see a collection of work produced strictly by Americans. I started on the 8th floor and worked my way down. I only recognized a handful of pieces/artists along the way, which made me realize I really need to be more involved in the art world so I can truly appreciate all the amazing and historic pieces I was looking at. Oh well, that comes with time--so it's a good thing I'm taking this course. Out of all the work I saw in the Whitney, there was one piece that stands out the most. When I saw it, I couldn't stop thinking about how much of a genius the artist was for conceiving such an idea. The piece I'm talking about is the 8-foot candle sculpture of Julian Schnabe by Urs Fischer. This giant man is LITERALLY a candle. It is lit every day and put out every night, so it is designed to melt away. I think that is so cool  because who said art is to be permanent and archival? When I saw this sculpture his head had already melted and his face was lying on the floor. I just with I was there to watch his face fall off...that would have been incredible!