Monday, January 20, 2020

How Gay Art Survives in Beijing, as Censors Tighten Grip

By Marjorie Perry
For an exhibition called "Love is Blue," ART.Des displayed a sculpture, The Innocence, in the foreground by the artist Yang Yang and an oil painting by an artist who prefers to remain unnamed. Credit: Marjorie Perry
From the outside, the facade of Destination (a prominent Beijing venue that expressly welcomes gay people) is downright drab. But inside this four-story cultural center on the east side of the city, the works in the nonprofit art gallery can push boundaries. Since the center’s opening, its clientele has remained mostly gay men, but it’s more than just a place to find a date. The center provides anonymous H.I.V. testing, practice rooms for a men’s choir, yoga and dance classes. And on the third floor, the art gallery, ART. Des, provides a window into the current state of gay art in Beijing. [More]

Sunday, January 19, 2020


By Gregory & Ernest Disney-Britton
Malcolm X from '48 Portraits (underexposed)', 2012 Ink jet print on pulped encyclopedic paper 22 × 24 1/2 in 55.9 × 62.2 cm Edition 2/2
We met Samuel Levi Jones, a major star in contemporary art on Thursday at an Indianapolis public school where he installed his striking "48 Portraits (Underexposed)." The work is a direct response to Gerhard Richter's "48 Portraits" (1971) that depicts only white males. Trained as a photographer, Jones is best known for reconstructing  historical texts into patchwork paintings of equality. Samuel Levi Jones talked with kids at Edison School of the Arts, and that makes him, our artist of the week.

Saturday, January 18, 2020

Pamela J. Joyner, Art Collector: Shaping Art in the New Decade

By Sarah Douglas
Pamela J. Joyner with William T. Williams’s Eastern Star, 1971. ©NATHANAEL TURNER
Pamela Joyner has some advice for collectors who are just starting out: “Figure out where the vacuum is, where the void is, where the need is. So whatever the void is, find the need and fill the gap.” That’s what she told an audience last year in San Francisco, where she and her husband, Alfred J. Giuffrida, are based, and that is exactly what she did 20 years ago, when she began a collection of abstract art by African-American artists that now encompasses more than 300 works by artists like Alma Thomas, Sam Gilliam, and Mark Bradford. There is no trifling objective behind the couple’s acquisitions. [More]