Art – the New York way

Last week whilst over the pond we visited New York’s latest Art Gallery – The New Art Museum at 235 Bowery. It’s an interesting building from the outside – industrial looking – punctuated with a giant red rose!

But unlike the Nottingham Contemporary entry isn’t free. It was $16 each (around £10) – to see effectivley one exhibition -The Carsten Holler Experience.

I will confess that sometimes Contemporary Art puzzles me. This was pretty puzzling – a giant slide, a submersion tank (an hour queue to undress and get wet), some bird cages and giant mushrooms. There was a room with some plastic figures and headache inducing flashing lights. There was a tame carousel with mirrors all over it – a 2 year old wouldn’t have been ‘thrilled’ at the speed. You could have worn upside-down glasses all the way round if you signed a disclaimer.

This was a show I struggled with. I think they call it “installation art”. But it wasn’t partuclarly clever. I didn’t fancy queing to take part in some of it.

I suppose you always take a risk in paying an entry fee to see something you have never heard about -or an artist you haven’t hear of. I’m not sure if it was the lack of exhibits that disappointed or that this was at the edge of my understanding of ‘art’.

But the following night we were walking through SOHO on the way back to our Hotel – and happened upon a Gallery selling art. The front part of the gallery was a little too ‘fantasy’ world for my liking. But at the back were original cartoons – The Simpsons (signed by Matt Groening), Tin Tin (Herge), Shultz’s Snoopy, Tim Burton’s Corpse Bride sketches and a brilliant sketch of Kermit the Frog by Jim Henson. Prices varied from around $800 up to $30,000. I didn’t buy any – although had the Herge’s Tin Tin not been sold I would have been very tempted.

For all of the prices though – viewing was free! And I appreciated it much more than Carsten Holler…

By Tim GARRATT Posted in Grumpy Old Man! Tagged Carsten Holler, Corpse Bride, Dr Seus, Herge, Jim Henson, Kermit the frog, Matt Groening, Muppets, New Museum, , Schultz, Snoopy, The Bowery, The Simpsons, Tim Burston, Tin Tin

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