Living In Glass Houses

meier2Some people write personal blogs, some link a web cam to their apartments and still others move into glass houses. Each, in their own way, puts their lives on display.
 
I’ve overheard more than one comment by a pedestrian noting that they “wouldn’t want to live in a fishbowl.”
 
What they are referring to is the Richard Meier apartment house at One Grand Army Plaza in Brooklyn. It’s not the building itself I want to comment on here. I’ve come to like it in some respects, most notably that the color resembles the bronze on the eagles atop columns at the entrance to Prospect Park.  
 meier
Yet as residents move into the building, what I am finding interesting is their furnishings. Who would think someone attracted to this no-wall modernity would have Chippendale-style dining chairs? I’ve been irritated more than once seeing modern interiors in Victorian homes, but this is just perplexing!
 
You might think they’d take a cue from the decor in the lobby, modern bright-colored plastic chairs, black sofas and large Jackson-Pollock-esque paintings in the lobby. That’s not what seems to be filling the apartments, however. There’s overstuffed fabric furniture you’d expect in a Pioria ranch home, lamps straight out of any suburban furniture retailer, and most curiously, Mahogany. I guess brown furniture is out for Brownstones, but in for ultra-modern glass fishbowls. More, it’s placed right against the glass, creating a “wall” where none exists.
 
Like the web-cam or the personal blog, lives and posessions here are on display. And in all cases, you might find some sensibilities are just out of whack.
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About Art After X

With the death of President Kennedy in 1963, America changed. As hard as it is to minimize that sentiment, the effect of Dallas was even greater. The same year saw the merging of the Dallas Museum for Contemporary Arts, which had been central to the art scene, and the Dallas Museum of Fine Arts. Douglas MacAgy, then the director of DMCA, not only opposed the merger, but also declined to directorship of the combined museum. The regionalist movement which had been strong for decades, was giving way to more of an interest in what was going on nationally, and internationally. Like it or not, Dallas was on the national stage.

When the Kennedy’s arrived in Fort Worth, local collectors had decorated a hotel room with internationally-renowned works. While the president and his wife learned a great deal about the ability of Texans to collect major art, there was little they could glean about the local scene in this era-defining city.

With this in mind, we have begun a project to look not back at the art scene in Dallas, but foreword from 1963. We are interviewing gallery owners, curators and others involved in the art scene then, but this will be a story told mostly through interviews with artists active in the city from that point into the 1980s.

The result will be a book with a video component.

We hope you will join us in our journey. The hashtag for the project is #artafterx and the url artafterx.com will point to the latest updates on this weblog.

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