Concrete to Culture

A project for new public space among Sofia's post-socialist tower blocks that I helped conceive, initiate and manage won a New European Bauhaus Prize. We transformed the disused rooftop of a parking building with tons of art and built an outdoor stage, seating, food pavilions, sports facilities and a playground. Local communities were an integral part of the design process. This is the 3rd year in a row that my organization, The Collective, has been shortlisted for these prestigious EU prizes, and the 2nd year that we receive the prize. We can hardly believe it ourselves. The organization itself is only 4 years old! We keep dreaming up and building better shared spaces.
Susanne Mull

At Home in This Place

Describing her studio, Mull says, “It’s a little bit similar to Adolph Menzel’s Balcony Room.” The 1845 German painting readily evokes the artist’s serene, sun-filled space with tall ceilings and French doors opening to a balcony. Mull’s home—a top-heavy 19th-century building with a Mansard roof—keeps her connected to the past. So, too, does the region of Rheinhessen in which she lives. This area was a stomping ground for the German Romantics...
Michael Rosenfeld Gallery LLC, New York, NY

Take Me to the Moon: Alma Thomas

Alma Thomas was the first African-American woman to be featured in the White House art collection, the first African-American woman to have a solo show at the Whitney Museum of American Art, and the first person to graduate from Howard University with a degree in Fine Art. During her life, she never fit into a certain artistic category, and the problem still stands of whether she belongs on the ‘outside’ or ‘inside’ of twentieth century art.
Christian Berst Art Brut / Ampersand Gallery

Joyful Voyeur: John Kayser's Playfully Intimate Photography

After John Kayser’s death in 2007, stacks of home-developed black and white photographs and cheap drugstore prints surfaced among his personal effects. Kayser’s oeuvre could easily have ended up as pornographic curios in a California garage sale. Yet something differentiates his work from clichéd amateur erotica or mere smut. In part, it is his vision of femininity. It is also the fact that Kayser works with an awareness of his medium. His compositions include inside jokes about the nature of representation or the entanglement of high and low genres.

Hardboiled: Gil Batle’s Debut in New York

West 20th Street has one of the highest concentrations of art galleries in Manhattan. On a cool, misty November evening, most windows were brightly lit. The only dark spot was the former Bayview Correctional Facility on the corner of 11th Avenue, whose solid brick walls guard its hidden past. That evening, Gil Batle’s debut show, "Hatched in Prison," opened at the Ricco Maresca Gallery across the street from Bayview.
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