"Joe Zucker: Armada" in The Brooklyn Rail

Joe Zucker: Portrait of the artist. Pencil on paper by Phong Bui.

"Joe Zucker: Armada," the exhibition I organized at The National Arts Club, is reviewed by Harrison Tenzer in The Brooklyn Rail

Joe Zucker has avoided the limitations of working in a cohesive style, instead embracing logic to produce diverse bodies of work that seek to unite subject, technique, material, and support. From his cotton-ball paintings depicting the ills of slavery with the very commodity that fueled the trade in human flesh to his lake paintings, the result of paint being poured and hardening in a shallow container to create monochrome works about their own creation, Zucker constantly intertwines art history with practical craft, logic, and wit. Much has been written about this formal and conceptual balancing act, but relatively little attention has been paid to Zucker’s subject matter in itself. Armada, the recent retrospective of his works on paper and studies from the 1970s to the present that feature nautical themes curated by James Panero offers an opportunity to consider a specific topic that has proven particularly fruitful to Zucker over the decades: piracy. 

Read the full review here. 

What can the tech bubble learn from the art bubble?


James writes:

What can the tech bubble learn from the art bubble? I offer some thoughts in this piece by Gary Sernovitz in The New Yorker.

The art world knows about prices floating ever higher on abstraction and hope. The resonances aren’t completely coincidental. Both venture capitalists and art buyers are in the business of valuing the invaluable. Both stake their reputations on exquisite selection. Both nurture talent before it can support itself. Both have a soft spot for youth, for unbowed ego, for the myth of solitary genius, for the next new thing. Both operate in a world of frustratingly limited information and maddeningly unpredictable success. Both depend on consumer culture while holding themselves superior to it. And both the art market and venture investing have become increasingly winner-take-all games, with more clout to the companies and artists backed by the most powerful dealers or venture capitalists.

Complete article here.


A Great Day in Bushwick


James writes: It was a great day in Bushwick on Saturday as over seventy five artists, gallerists, journalists, and organizers joined photographer Meryl Meisler and me at Stout Projects to take part in the Bushwick Documentation Project. A big thank you to Hyperallergic, Bushwick Daily, and Bedford & Bowery for helping to spread the word of this all-inclusive open call. Meryl's photographs and my writing of this great day will appear in our exhibition at Stout Projects over Bushwick Open Studios in October 2016. In the meantime, here is some documentation of the documentation including a great video by James Kalm



Outtake: Bushwick Documentation Project. @merylmeisler @paulbehnke @robinlstout

A photo posted by James Panero (@jamespanero) on


Outtake: Bushwick Documentation Project. @merylmeisler @paulbehnke @robinlstout

A photo posted by James Panero (@jamespanero) on


We all know that Bushwick Open Studios is slated for October this year rather its customary first-weekend-in-June dateline, but that doesn't mean that the organization that puts it all together, Arts in Bushwick, is idle this weekend. Today, for instance, was a huge photo session helmed by the champion photographer and storied documentarian of Bushwick, Meryl Meisler, and her critical counterpart in Bushwick-art-ography, the writer James Panero. They were the patient ringleaders of a shoot involving scores of BOS veterans and local gallerists for AiB's ambitious book project, now nearly wrapped up. Lots of familiar faces, lots more who surely should've been there. A few kids and twice as many dogs. All in front of and upstairs at host gallery Stout Projects. And all very fun. Meryl, center here, is a photographic—and photogenic—ringleader par excellence. Also of note: Tomorrow is Bushwick Community Day in Irving Park. With a bit of transposition, AiB could stand for 'Anything But Inactive.' An active weekend for AiB, for sure. And a big hats off to James and Meryl for pulling off today's shoot with such apparent ease. @artsinbushwick @merylmeisler @jamespanero @bibibrazil @stoutprojects #nycart #brooklynart #bushwickart #bushwickopenstudios #artsinbushwick #bushwickdocumentationproject #photoshoot #jamespanero #merylmeisler #bushwickartgalleries #bushwickartists

A photo posted by Paul D'Agostino (@postuccio) on