Posts tagged ‘chicago’

May 5, 2011

Wall, a monumental work by Tony Smith

Tony Smith (1912–1980) is best known for his large modular sculpture in black painted steel of the 1960s and ‘70s. Frequently described in the context of Minimalism, Smith’s elegant and powerful contribution to twentieth century sculpture is represented in the collection of every major US museum, including MoMA, the Met, the Smithsonian, the Whitney, the Detroit Institute
of Arts, and the Walker.

Valerie Carberry Gallery and Wright collaborate to present Wall, a monumental work by Tony Smith from 1964. This special exhibition is the first presentation of a major work by Smith in Chicago in over forty years.

A sleek mass in painted steel, Wall achieves harmony in concept and form. Smith frees Wall from its architectural function as divider or barrier and creates a stand-alone object that celebrates our relationship to pure form: a sublime viewing experience on a human scale.

On view at Wright, 1440 West Hubbard Street from May 6th – 20th, Monday – Friday 10am – 5pm, with an opening reception May 5th, 5 – 8pm.

Tony Smith, Wall, 1964, steel, painted black, 96 x 216 x 24 inches. Courtesy of Matthew Marks Gallery. © 2011 Tony Smith Estate/Artists Rights Society
(ARS), New York

Wright, the Chicago-based international auction house of art and design, has been a leader in the industry since its founding in 2000. Wright has pioneered whole fields of collecting and transformed the market for modern design.

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March 4, 2011

Twyla Tharp brings her creative rebellion to Hubbard Street Dance Company with world premiere

Hubbard Street Dance Chicago Artistic Director Glenn Edgerton has announced the return of choreographic legend Twyla Tharp to launch the company’s 2011-12 season.  Hubbard Street has commissioned Tharp to create a new work for the company, which will debut during the company’s Fall Series engagement at the Harris Theater in Millennium Park, October 13-16, 2011.

“I had the great pleasure of working with Twyla back in the eighties as a dancer,” recalls Edgerton.  “Recently I reunited with her in the capacity of director and choreographer and it has been a fascinating reunion – she is fascinating.  Twyla had such a significant history with Hubbard Street and I felt it was important that our current dancers experience her with the motivation of looking forward.

I approached her with the idea of a project that would represent her rebellious nature, which in the sixties and the onset of her career is what brought her choreography to prominence. Consequently, we are embarking on a new creation by Twyla that demonstrates her wonderful sense of creative rebellion.”

“When Glenn and I met we discussed many ideas,” notes Tharp. “When he asked me for a new work, I thought to myself, ‘Great, I’ve always enjoyed the vitality of Hubbard Street dancers and I have a long-term relationship with the company.’ I look forward to working with the new dancers and creating, what I believe, will be a very special dance – one that will challenge me as well as them.”

Hubbard Street’s audiences last saw Tharp’s work performed in 1995 with the World Premiere of I Remember Clifford.  Other works once produced by Hubbard Street Dance Chicago were Fait Accompli in 1995, Nine Sinatra Songs in 1992, The Golden Section and Baker’s Dozen in 1991 and 2007, The Fugue and Sue’s Leg.

Tharp will be honored with  a Spotlight Award, presented to her by Hubbard Street Founder Lou Conte, for her creative vision and unique role in American choreography and her history with the company.

The Spotlight Awards will be given at Hubbard Street’s annual Spotlight Ball on Thursday, June 2, 2011, at Hilton Chicago, 720 S. Michigan Avenue.

In the meantime you should check out the Spring Series which will feature two never-before-seen works from preeminent Israeli choreographers Ohad Naharin and Sharon Eyal from Tel Aviv’s Batsheva Dance Company.

For more information about HSDC’s 2011-12 season and subscriptions packages, call the Hubbard Street Ticket Office at 312-850-9744 or visit hubbardstreetdance.com

October 4, 2009

Being Anthony Luciano

tom_kolovos_wordpressnewAristotle famously declared that “man without a city is either beast or god,”  by which he meant that communal participation is the defining characteristic of being human.

So when Anthony Luciano, the New York based accessories designer whose newest collection of lux handbags is flying off the shelves at Neiman Marcus, responds aphoristically in an email that “I’m not participating in the recession,” you have to  wonder if he is some glib beast whose head is stuck in the economic sand or, quite possibly, the incarnate deity that  every retailer could use  at the moment.

Anthony Luciano

Anthony Luciano

“I can only expand,”  he wrote in another email exchange, ” by saying I believe that even in tough economic times people are still drawn to beautiful and unique things which is what I do best. I have, of course, put more price conscious items into the line to attract a more discerning client but I will always do special custom made lux accessories.”


Eureka. Who needs any more bedazler logo crazed “status” bags? Who ever needed those in the first place?  In his current collection, Mr Luciano’s uses soft waxed and hand painted python to remarkable effect, producing, for instance, weightless hobo carryalls with over exaggerated leather tassels and irresistibly soft clutches with feminine floral touches. The waxing and painting produces solid colored  surfaces that remind one of licorice or liquid, even. Colored python skins have a subtlety akin to watercolors.

Even in July of last year someone had the good sense to point  out to Women’s Wear Daily that “if you want people to part with their money, they have to feel like they are getting something for it.” One wishes more retailers and designers shared WWD’s and Mr. Luciano’s insight. People don’t want basics in a down economy. They already have plenty of those. And they’ve already had it with  items whose prices bear no relation to craftsmanship.

9-117 Purple Python
Even  if you’ve only recently started pinching your pennies, giving you something for your money is not a new concept for Mr. Luciano. Inside each of his handbags you’ll find he has sewn in a penny, his trademark since he started his company in 2000. “It’s an Italian tradition. When you give a handbag or wallet as a gift you should put money in it first for good luck.”

WHERE: Neiman Marcus Michigan Ave on Thursday October 8th and Friday October 9th
WHAT:  Meet Anthony Luciano and  watch him construct pieces by hand on the selling floor. Take the opportunity to collaborate with the designer and choose from a variety of hand picked frames from his vast collection to create a custom bag.  Anthony will help you choose the perfect leather and sketch a design and make your unique piece.

November 11, 2008

Azuca’ pa’ tu amargura

Live long enough–or hear the theme song of “The Facts of Life” often enough– and you eventually learn “you take the the good/you take the bad/and there you have the facts of life.” Yes, more than 70% of the gay vote went to Barack Obama–more than went to Clinton or Kerry–and yes, 70% of our black brothers and sisters in California voted to deny gay men and women the fundamental civil right to marry.

Quite honestly, it’s been a bittersweet week for me.  While I fully share the abundant joy of the historical moment with my black brothers and sisters as we finally bore witness in Grant Park to Martin Luther King’s dream, 70% of the black voters in California embraced the nightmare logic of this country’s miscegenation laws that would have made the marriage of Barack Obama’s mother and father illegal in America and just applied it to gay people.

Thanks. Does Hallmark make a card for that?

Early in June of 2002, I found out that the Cuban singer Albita was going to play at Ravinia so I called a good friend of mine, who happens to be Nigerian, and told hershe simply had to go to the concert with me. I had seen Albita  perform two years earlier at RFK Stadium at the concert for gay rights which coincided with the March on Washington. Though much bigger names played that night–Melissa Etheridge, Chaka Khan, Garth Brooks, George Michael among them–Albita who came on early in the night simply blew me away with an amazing voice and an infectious Afro-Cuban sound. I came back to Chicago and immediately bought her CD “Son.” If it were vinyl, I would have surely worn it out in the first week.

Please, I implored my friend, come with me to hear this woman. “Ok, I’ll make you a deal,” she said. “I’ll go if you come with me to the Miriam Makeba concert later this month.”

Um. Sure. And who is Miriam Makeba? When is the concert? Wait a minute, the tickets I have for June 19 have some woman named Miriam as the opening act? It’s this Makeba person!

Amazed at the coincidence, I listened as she explained about “Mama Africa,” and why I had better get my skinny white behind to Ravinia even if Albita weren’t on the bill.

So we went to Ravinia together, curious about what we would each discover and just to make matters even more interesting we dragged along a mutual friend who had heard of neither woman.

Needless to say, it was a magical night of music. We went to see a concert but Albita and Miriam put on a celebration of life. Despite the fact that most of the songs were in languages we surely didn’t fully understand,  there was no mistaking the universal language of joy, heartache and exile in their music and in their voices. We all walked away that night not as people of different races, genders and sexual orientations but as celebrants of a common, and yes, a sometimes deeply flawed, humanity. I was deeply saddened to hear that the truly amazing “Mama Africa” died this week. But despite the sadness, I was able to find solace in the hope, fearlessness and tenacity of a life lived by example and against injustice.

Her struggle makes mine a little more bearable today. As Albita sang on that magical night, “Azuca’ pa’ tu amargura,” Tom.

Sugar for your bitterness, Tom. 

tomkolovos.com

April 20, 2007

Intermix and the City

This past year we have seen major changes in the retail
landscape of the city. Macy’s ended the reign of Marshall Field’s,
Lord and Taylor closed at Water Tower and Carson’s closed on State Street.

With skyrocketing rents, too much interchangeable
merchandise and erratic customer service, the one
stop shopping department store as we knew it may be an
endangered species.

But just as some mid-market and upscale department
stores face hard times, specialty boutiques that
focus on a younger, savier, more affluent customers have
prospered. Intermix, which opened Wednesday at 40 E.Delaware,
and Scoop NYC, which opened a few months back
in Bucktown, are two examples of a new retail model
which provides eclectic merchandise alongide
established designers, hip knowlegeable staff and
personalized customer service verging on styling.

At Intermix, which unlike Scoop NYC features only
women’s clothing and accesories, they really do
intermix: the designers, the prices, the formal and
the casual. Instead of displaying merchandise in
clusters by designer, they display the merchandise by
“lifestyle,” essentially dividing the 4000 square
foot store into a dressier, event/nite on the town
section and a section for “everyday” clothing.

But there are no hard and fast rules here so you may
easily find the “must have” Lacey Parker black lace
mini dress for $258 on the more casual side
perfectly appropriate for a more formal event, just as you
might find the same designer’s white chiffon tunic with
metalic polka dots($248) on the dressier side will
look great with a pair of the ubiquitous skinny
jeans. The Mathew Williamson floral chiffon dress for $1,895 is
both a must have for late nights and an indicator of the upper
range of the price mix here.

Labels like Valentino, Missoni, Chloe and Stella McCartney are
displayed alongside secondary lines from those same designers
along with a bevy of younger, less recognizeable designers (Lacey Parker,
Thread Social are standouts).

The look here is very much about layering — invariably something
white — with vintage inspired jackets over colorful tunics and
tunic style dresses over leggings or skinny jeans.( Instead of a sea of
black, the basic color of the season in the store is, refreshingly, white.)

Think of the 2007 version of “Sex and the City” and you’ve got
the idea.

A second location is slated to open by late May on Armitage.

Happy shopping!

www.TheBestDressedList.com