Headlines: Paris, Jack Whitten, Pastry
1) Artists and Art Workers Speak Out Against Proposed Koons Sculpture
French artists and museum workers are panning Jeff Koons’ gift of his Bouquet of Tulips sculpture to the city of Paris as a memorial for the terror attacks of November 2015. The sculpture, a giant hand clutching a bouquet of half-inflated balloons designed to look like a bouquet of flowers, is very much in keeping with Koons’ pop-art influenced, appropriative style. Twenty-four people, including artists, gallery workers, and even a handful of collectors, have signed a letter urging city Officials to reconsider plans to install the sculpture, and raising questions of why the opportunity for a Paris memorial was not put forth to French citizens.
2) Architectural Backgrounds Inform Innovations in Pastry
Enjoy architecture? What about dessert? Check out this profile of a new group of pastry chefs who are drawing their inspiration from backgrounds in architecture. Among those discussed are Jennifer Yee, an Atlanta-based patissier who was originally trained as an architect and worked for an architectural firm before making the switch to sweets. You’ve likely heard of or seen photos of the work of Dinara Kasko, a Polish architect-turned-pastry chef who’s become an internet sensation for her incredibly exacting geometric cakes.
3) Ursula K. Leguin Dies at 88
Fantasy and science-fiction author Ursula K. LeGuin passed away on Monday afternoon. According to the family, Le Guin died peacefully in her home in Portland, Oregon, after a period of illness. She was 88.
4) Jack Whitten Dies at 78
Pioneering abstract painter Jack Whitten also passed away this week. Sean J. Patrick Carney recalls, in a poignant and humorous piece on Humor and the Abject, a meeting with Whitten wherein the artist regaled the author and a number of art graduate students with the story of his life and career during a class studio visit.
5) Yue Minjun Features in Recent X-Files Episode
Finally, a recent episode of the updated X-Files was the talk of the art world this week, as the episode prominently featured an artwork by Yue Minjun. The sculpture, titled “A-maze-ing Laughter” is currently installed in Vancouver, BC, where much of the new X-Files was shot. (Incidentally, also the home base of Artist Run Website!) The show’s government-conspiracy brand of intrigue seems to pair well with the work of the Chinese artist, whose wide-grinning figures tend to satirize the imagery of Soviet and Chinese political propaganda.