New Art Exhibition Features ‘Banned Booty’ Confiscated From Airport Security Checkpoints

http://www.bannedbooty.com/Ever wonder what happens to the tweezers, sewing scissors and Swiss Army Knives abandoned by hapless travelers at airport security? While most probably ended up in the landfill, some contraband nail clippers have received a second life through a new contemporary art exhibit from California artist Steve Maloney.

The exhibit, called “Banned Booty – Palm Springs Checkpoint,” opens October 18 at the Palm Springs Air Museum in Palm Springs, California. It will feature mixed-media installation pieces created from items, mostly sharp-ended, that were confiscated from carry-on luggage by the Travel Security Administration at the Palm Springs International Airport. The exhibit’s intention is “to ‘continue the conversation’ about present-day air travel,” particularly its relation to everyday lives and the city of Palm Springs, says a press release. According to Maloney:

American travel changed radically after September 11, 2001. The Banned Booty series captures a small aspect of this change. What used to be routine – checking into a flight and passing through the final security check point with no concern for the nail files or scissors stuffed in your bag – was transformed into a drawn-out endeavor.

The exhibit’s opening day will feature guests like Mayor Steve Pougnet, Palm Springs City Councilman Paul Lewin and Shannon Garcia-Hamilton, Federal Security Director for the TSA in Palm Springs, who will gather to participate in that conversation first-hand. For more information, visit BannedBooty.com.

Alighiero Boetti At NYC’s MoMA: Art Inspired By Travel And Geography




Have a look at the map above. In this globalized world, where countries are essentially brands, this map, which uses each country’s respective flag design to delineate its borders, probably doesn’t seem so unusual, save for that large red swath in Asia marked with a hammer and sickle. Created between 1971 and 1972, this “Mappa” is one of the signature works of art created by Alighiero Boetti, the Italian artist whose paintings, kilims, sculptures and mixed media pieces form an exciting exhibition at New York City‘s Museum of Modern Art (MoMA).

Alighiero Boetti: Game Plan,” which runs at the MoMA through October 1, 2012, is the first major exhibition in the United States of the works of Turin-born Boetti, who made art from the early 1960s until his death in 1994. Associated with the Arte Povera (Poor Art) movement in Italy, Boetti found a lot of his inspiration by exploring travel, maps, geography, stamps and postcards.

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[Photo above courtesy MoMA]In the 1970s, Boetti traveled extensively, particularly to Afghanistan, where he collaborated with local craftswomen to create embroidered tapestries such as the “Mappa,” above. Without a doubt, Boetti’s Mappa series is his most famous, and these iconic, large-scale kilims are displayed in MoMA’s expansive, second floor space along with other tapestries that play with time, numbers, patterns and colors. Another innovative work on display here is “Tapestry of the Thousand Longest Rivers of the World,” which lists the world’s 1,000 longest rivers from largest to smallest. There is poetry in seeing the names of these rivers side-by-side and in a medium beyond the computer screen.

Boetti’s abstract look at geography inspired other works on display on MoMA’s sixth floor, which is where the majority of “Game Plan” is located. One outstanding series is “Territori Occupati (Occupied Territories),” works from the late 1960s in which Boetti collaborates with his wife Annemarie Sauzeau to create outlines of conflict zones and occupied lands ripped from newspaper headlines. Boetti and Sauzeau outlined conflict maps from daily editions of La Stampa newspaper. Then, they embroidered the zones’ shapes along with the newspaper dates, on cloth, creating “stateless” representations of conflict areas, such as the Basque region of Spain, Northern Ireland, and the West Bank, Gaza, and Sinai.

Perhaps the most whimsical of Boetti’s experiments with travel- and geography-related themes is his “Viaggi Postale,” a project that had the artist send 25 friends and colleagues in the art world on personalized travel itineraries through the mail. According to MoMA:

Because the addressee did not live at the destination or because, in some cases, the address was fabricated, most of the envelopes were returned to Boetti on each leg of their journeys. He photocopied the front and back of the returned envelopes as a record, then put each one inside a larger envelope and sent it off to the next destination; once more, many were returned, to be photocopied and sent out again until the itineraries were complete.

Imaginary journeys, maps and approximately 100 other works constituting “Alighiero Boetti: Game Plan” will be on display at MoMA through October 1. Admission is $25 but Fridays from 4-8 p.m. are free.

NYC Film Exhibit Celebrates Iconic Moments In Movie History

film exhibitBehind every iconic movie moment lies months, sometimes years, of painstaking research, planning and execution. This month, a new film exhibit at New York‘s Museum of the Moving Image seeks to explore the sometimes-obsessive craftsmanship behind 30 of the most pivotal scenes in film history.

The exhibit, titled “Persol Magnificent Obsessions: 30 Stories of Craftsmanship in Film,” is sponsored by eyewear manufacturer Persol and curated by Michael Connor, who was named one of Time Out New York’s “Young Curators to Watch” in 2010. Presented in three installments, the exhibit attempts to draw parallels between the craft and dedication required to create epic films as well as high-quality eyewear. See, for instance, how director Todd Haynes used color charts to evoke emotion in “Far From Heaven,” or how actor-director Ed Harris drew from years of character immersion for his role in “Pollock.”

The first installment of the exhibit was unveiled last summer, and the second opened to the public on June 14. This year’s installment showcases artifacts, research notes, sketches, clips and stills from ten iconic films, including “W.E.,” “The Last Emperor,” “Amelie” and “Million Dollar Baby.” The exhibit runs through August 19 at the Museum of the Moving Image in Astoria, Queens, New York.

Top 3 Places In The US To Experience LEGO-Mania This Summer

LEGOs – show me a man, woman or child who doesn’t love these little plastic building bricks and I’ll show you three exhibitions that will impress them to pieces this summer.

National Building Museum's Towering Ambition LEGO exhibitLEGO® Architecture: Towering Ambition
National Building Museum, Washington, DC

Through September 3, 2012
The LEGO exhibit “Towering Ambition” has been wowing visitors to Washington, DC’s National Building Museum since 2010. On display is the LEGO artistry of Adam Reed Tucker, one of only 11 LEGO® certified professionals in the world, who re-created 15 of the world’s most famous buildings and monuments out of toy bricks. See scale models of the Empire State Building, Gateway Arch and Dubai’s Burj Khalifa, also known (for the time being) as the tallest building in the world. For the final months of this exhibition, three DC-area design companies have contributed equally intriguing LEGO builds of other iconic landmarks which collectively total more than 75,000 bricks.Sculptures Built with LEGO® Bricks
Reiman Gardens, Ames, Iowa
Through October 28, 2012

Beautiful Reiman Gardens, the largest public gardens in Iowa located at Iowa State University in Ames, invited Sean Kenney, another LEGO-certified artist, to create 27 nature-inspired sculptures arranged in 14 displays. A hummingbird sipping nectar from a flower, a bumblebee, a monarch butterfly, fox, a moth orchid, and a bison with a calf are just a few of the incredible LEGO builds throughout the grounds. The sculptures range from six inches tall to eight feet tall and approximately 500,000 bricks were used in the exhibition.


LEGO Hummingbird at Reiman Gardens

Nathan Sawaya: The Art of the Brick
Art and Culture Center of Hollywood, Florida
Through August 19, 2012

Sculptures ranging from lovers embraced in a kiss to Mount Rushmore make up this eclectic exhibition in Hollywood, Florida, featuring the works of master LEGO builder Nathan Sawaya. Many of Sawaya’s past works, such as his LEGO replica of the flag raising at Iwo Jima, have earned him permanent exhibition space at museums around the world. So this show of mostly new works will be worth checking out.


Of course, in addition to these three exhibits, LEGO enthusiasts can visit several official LEGO venues throughout the United States. There are now LEGOLAND theme parks in Florida and California as well as four LEGOLAND Discovery Centers in the U.S. (and four more worldwide).

[Photos: National Building Museum; Flickr user McLeod; Art and Culture Center of Hollywood]

Nelson-Atkins Museum unveils interactive website

Nelson-Atkins MuseumThe Nelson-Atkins Museum in Kansas City has unveiled an amazing interactive website.

Called Studio 33, it’s part of an outreach effort by one of America’s leading art museums to bring in a new generation of web-savvy visitors.

Many museums are ramping up their websites. A common feature is to have images of some of the pieces in the collection with information and related links. Studio 33 does this, and also has lots of audio files and videos, including artist interviews, time-lapse films of setting up installation pieces, and behind-the-scenes talks with curators. Experts cover each section of the museum. For example, the museum’s archaeologist takes you through the ancient art collection.

One thing that makes Studio 33 stand out among museum websites, beyond the sheer scale of it all, is that you can explore the museum following three different avatars: a high school student, a docent, and a social media junkie. Each gives a different perspective tailored to a different type of visitor.

[Photo of Caravaggio’s painting of John the Baptist, which is in the Nelson-Atkins collection, courtesy Wikimedia Commons]