I know I'm a lil late on this one, but here it is. I was hesitant to post this as I hate laughing at someone else's expense, but then it dawned on me that SHE posted it herself so she is; a) doing ok after the fall and b) she has a sense of humor about it.
Make sure you're ready...LOL.
copyright 2006 www.rickyday.net
I have fond memories of getting the permission slip signed, my Mom packing a lunch and my teacher whisking us away on field trips. Those cool ass excursions where you are taken to places you probably would never have visited otherwise were usually sooooooo much fun. They were an important part of the education process and since we never stop learning until we die, then it stands to reason they are still important.
With that in mind I am planning a series of Urban Pop "Field Trips" where I will organize some simple, inexpensive and interesting trips to see local art and artists, music events and more. Think about it...you wil experience new things, meet new people and probably discover something new about the city we call home. For those of you outside of New York, I'll be traveling a lot in the coming months and plan to do "field trips" in DC, Chicago, Miami and LA as well.
Visit the blog daily for up to date news on upcoming events. Sign up to get the posts delivered to your email box or PDA's so you don't miss a beat. If you're interested in going on one of these trips reply to this post. I will soon create an email addy for use in coordinating the trips.
Thanks for "Popping" today.
On this past Friday as I ran errands (n the extreme cold), I decided to make one of my many impromtu visits to the Studio Museum in Harlem on 125th Street. I really can't stress enough what a great venue it is and it's sitting their right under our collective Harlem noses. Anyway, inside was a show I have been waiting for featuring the art of an African-American visual art legend BARKLEY L. HENDRICKS.
The show was full of super-sized portraits of beautiful black people from the 70's and 80's, a few landscapes and a whole lotta soul. This is art every person of color can fully appreciate. Paintings of people so real and so cool you will feel like you know them. This makes complete sense, because you DO KNOW THEM. They're your Uncle, cousin, brother and sister. They will remind you of your Aunt, Uncle and parents as you've seen them in snap shots. These paintings are a beautiful and passionately photo-realistic representation of us.
The show runs through March 15, 2009, but don't wait to see it. Catch it soon and then see it again and again. It's like a black family reunion in a museum. I'm going back and you should holla and join for a visit.
BARKLEY L. HENDRICKS: BIRTH OF THE COOL
November 12, 2008–March 15, 2009
Barkley L. Hendricks, Sweet Thang (Lynn Jenkins), 1975, Courtesy Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University, Courtesy the artist
This fall, The Studio Museum in Harlem will be the second stop for the first career retrospective of renowned African-American painter Barkley L. Hendricks (b. 1945). Hendricks was born in Philadelphia, trained at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts and Yale University and now lives and works in New London, Connecticut. He is best known for his life-size portraits of people of color living in urban areas in the 1960s and 70s.
This unparalleled exhibition of Hendricks’s paintings will include work from 1964 to the present. Alongside his iconic portraits, Barkley L. Hendricks: Birth of the Cool will feature many of Hendricks’s lesser known, older works and his newest pieces, small plein air studies of the Jamaican landscape. This exhibition was organized by the Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University and is curated by Trevor Schoonmaker, and will travel to the Santa Monica Museum of Art, the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in Philadelphia and the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston after it leaves the Studio Museum.
This exhibition is sponsored in part by the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc., the National Endowment for the Arts, which believes that a great nation deserves great art, the Mary Duke Biddle Foundation, and the North Carolina Arts Council with funding from the state of North Carolina.
And don't for get about...
TARGET FREE SUNDAYS
Sunday is the day that Harlem truly comes alive, and the day that many make time to visit The Studio Museum in Harlem. To make sure that the Museum is accessible to all, we would like to introduce Target Free Sundays at the Studio Museum, thanks to generous support from Target. The program, which will offer free Museum admission every Sunday between 12 and 6 PM, reflects a shared commitment to engage the community and offer a vital cultural experience to all.
In addition to free Museum admission on Sundays, the Education and Public Programs Department has organized free programs and events geared to all our different audiences. From hands-on family workshops to theater performances, whatever their age or interest, visitors will find something to love at Target Free Sundays at the Studio Museum. Join us, as we explore how art and visual communication can ignite the imagination, engage the mind and reflect our human experience-past, present and future.
I LOVE LOVE LOVE THIS CATS WORK. He is incredible!!!!!!
Check out more information on Mr. Hendricks. I have also included the lik below to a great story in the New York Times.
Barkley L. Hendricks (born 1945, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania) is a contemporary American painter who has made pioneering contributions to black portraiture and conceptualism. While he has worked in a variety of media and genres throughout his career (from photography to landscape painting), Hendricks' best known work takes the form of life-sized painted oil portraits. In these portraits, he attempts to imbue a proud, dignified presence upon his subjects, most frequently urban people of color. Hendricks’ work has been noted as unique for its matrimony of both American realism and post-modernism.
Hendricks earned his certificate at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, and received both his Bachelor's and Master's degrees from Yale University. Currently, he serves as a professor of art at Connecticut College.
Hendricks' work can be viewed in many public institutions, including the National Gallery of Art, the Chrysler Museum of Art, and the Philadelphia Museum of Art, among others. Hendricks' first career painting retrospective, with works dating from 1964 to present, was organized by the Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University in spring 2008, and is traveling on to the Studio Museum in Harlem, the Santa Monica Museum of Art, the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, and the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston.
(Courtesy of Wikipedia)
As you know I was a presenter at the First Annual Velocity Magazine Awards in Washington DC last weekend. The award I presented was for best Female R&B artist and the winner was a talented, gracious and emotional Mother of two named Tia Dae.
As part of a series of posts I plan to do in the run up to a feature post on the show check out this profile of Tia Dae. I have dropped some promo images of Tia, a link to her site where you can hear some music and of course her bio. Those who know me well may be a bit surprised that I am profiling an artist with such a smooth sound as I am not currently a big fan of Neo-Soul and the smoother types of R&B and jazz.However, it was easy to profile Ms Tia, because she is talented, her songs are well written and well sung and she has a sound I wanted to share with lovers of this great genre of music. Enjoy this independent artist doing her thing. I'd love to hear a duet between her and B. Michael L. who I will be profiling next week.
Tia Dae was born and raised in the Northeast section of Washington,
DC. Since the age of 5, Tia has been singing anywhere she could find an
From her humble beginnings in her grandmother’s living room, and
eventually to local music festivals and talent shows, Tia Dae has always
had the passion to perform. Like most children growing up in the inner
city during the late 80’s and early 90’s, Tia’s life was filled with the harsh
realities of her environment.
Poverty, drugs, violence and abuse would be a daily theme in the life of
Ms. Dae, and she would use music as a vehicle to help her try and escape
the bleak existence in which she lived.
By the mid to late 90's, Tia began building a local buzz around the DC
Metro area which afforded her the opportunity to perform at many of
the District’s most established venues of the time such as Unifest,
Georgia Avenue Day, and the Black Family Reunion to name a few.
Blessed with a soulful and jazzy voice, Tia credits Anita Baker, Mary J.
Blige, Billie Holiday, and Erykah Badu as the major influences on her
life and vocal style. Tia feels a connection to these ladies through life &
song, and sees their personal struggles, challenges, and triumphs as a
great lesson in faith and perseverance.
In 2006, Tia Dae was a finalist in Lil’ Wayne’s Cash Money Records
Talent Search which was sponsored by WKYS 93.9FM. In May 2007, Tia
Dae signed with independent record label Bright Vision Entertainment,
and released her first CD single "I’m Tryin" b/w "Natural High"
accompanied by a video for the lead single. In 2008, Tia released her
debut CD entitled "Its A Nu Dae", a mix of Neo Soul, Nu-Jazz, and
R&B. She has also performed as an actress in local plays and
independent films in the DC area, most notably, Let Go & Let God, In
One Day, and Jazz in The Diamond District.
Tia has been nominated for 3 awards at the 2008 Velocity Awards hosted
by Velocity Magazine & April Watts, and won for Best R&B female. She recently won first place at the
Bank of America/Artscape 2008 Billie Holiday Vocal Competition in
Baltimore, MD. Tia Dae has performed at many notable and established
venues such as Blues Alley, Bohemian Caverns, Six Flags (Jackson, NJ),
Black Family Reunion, Nationals Park Stadium, The Gaylord National
Harbor, and many other venues throughout the United States. Tia Dae’s
music has been played on WHUR 96.3FM, XM Satellite Radio’s Suite 62,
WPFW 89.3FM, Voices of America Radio, Last FM, Radio IO, Solar
Radio, Yahoo Music, Sirius Satellite Radio, and AOL Radio. Her music
is available on iTunes, Amazon, CDBaby, Rhapsody, Verizon Wireless,
and Kemp Mill Records.
It's a Nu sound, a Nu soul & feel...It's A Nu Dae! Say hello to your, Nu
Soul, Jazz/RB artist with a twist of funk...Ms Tia Dae!
Yesterday one of my long, long, long term homies gave me a call and said he had an extra ticket to see a musical and asked if I wanted to go. Before I rolled my eyes to the back of my head and politely said no he informed me it was for Shrek The Musical. Due mostly to the fact he is a tried and true friend who I NEVER spend time with anymore and as an artist it is critical that I expose myself to all kinds of culture and experiences as often as possible I said yes. Plus we used to go on auditions together back when I thought I wanted to be an actor, so this was like a mini-trip down nerdy actor memory lane.
Don't get me wrong, I like movie musicals alright Moulin Rouge, Sound of Music, Wizard of Oz and Grease are among my favorite movies of all time along with Star Wars and other geek classics. For whatever reason I am not a big fan of Broadway. I saw Taboo (whew...what waz dat smell?...lol), Rent (I think I missed what everyone else loved so much), Hot Feet (no comment) and Mary Poppins (which I liked...almost as much as the movie). As I look back I think the shows I've seen may have something to do with my lack of love for Broadway. In any event, last night I saw Shrek.
The staging was great, the sets were beautiful and the lighting was of course professional. The story is closely based on the storyline of the now classic original film and features a great cast. Musicals go through a very long development process ( I know cause I worked on Harlem Song at the Apollo Theatre a few years ago), so I found it odd how timely certain themes in Shrek The Musical seemed to be. Finding love, finding friendship and going on a journey to find ones self are all classic themes that anchor the shows musical score and book.
However, there is another theme in the show that was very blatant, quite timely and ultimately true. It was the theme of standing up for your rights and being proud of who and what you are. Talk about an anthem for gay rights! There is such a song in the show and it's called Freak Flag. It was quite interesting to watch parents with their children as a noticeably fey Pinocchio, an under cover transvestite Big Bad Wolf and supporting cast of...well outcasts proudly sung the refrain of let your freak flag fly! It was...well...FREAKY...liberating and fun! Much to their credit, the families seated near us enjoyed every note of the show including the obvious references to living your own life and letting others live theirs with respect and dignity.
The cast was great. Brian d'Arcy James is great as Shrek, Sutton Foster rocks as Princess Fiona, Christopher Sieber steals the show as Lord Farquaad, and Daniel Breaker is charming and hysterical as Donkey.
Daniel Breaker who plays Donkey
The only weakness in the show for me were the songs. They were decent, but not incredible and I cannot remember one melody or lyric right now and after all isn't the songs what a musical is supposed to be about? Strange thing is though I didn't quite love the songs, I still highly recommend letting your freak flag fly and checking out Shrek The Musical for yourself.
Big Bright Beautiful World
Story of My Life
The Goodbye Song
Don't Let Me Go
I Know It's Today
What's Up, Duloc?
Donkey Pot Pie
This Is How a Dream Comes True
Who I'd Be
I Think I Got You Beat
The Ballad of Farquaad
Make a Move
When Words Fail
Morning Person (Reprise)
Build Me a Wall
Big Bright Beautiful World (Reprise)
William Eggleston - Democratic Camera
On view November 7, 2008 - January 25, 2009
One of the most influential photographers of the last half-century, William Eggleston has defined the history of color photography. This exhibition is the artist's first retrospective in the United States and includes both his color and black-and-white photographs as well as Stranded in Canton, the artist’s video work from the early 1970s. The exhibition will travel throughout the United States as well as to the Haus der Kunst in Munich following its New York presentation. I'm gonna check this show out this week and suggest you do too. This guy practically invented color photography as an expression in Modern Art.
I went to see the show yesterday AND I LOVE IT!!!!!!!!!!!! His eye is exact, insightful and raw. The spontaneity in his images has the ironic effect of making you stop and stare and examine the moment in time captured via his lens. The use of color is incredible, the incidental sense of narrative is compelling and above all you can tell the man simply loves doing what he does. I was also surprised to see how similar my work is to his (not having discovered him until recently). The show provided more proof for a theory Adam Irby and I share that "we are all much more alike than we are different."
Hours and Information
Whitney Museum of American Art
945 Madison Avenue at 75th Street
New York, NY 10021
General Information: (212) 570-3600
Wednesday–Thursday: 11 am–6 pm
Friday: 1–9 pm (6–9 pm pay-what-you-wish admission)
Saturday–Sunday: 11 am–6 pm
Monday & Tuesday: Closed
The Museum is open Tuesdays for prearranged school programs. For more information, please contact the Education Department at firstname.lastname@example.org, (212) 570-7721 or fax (212) 570-7711.
Senior citizens (62 and over): $10
Students with valid ID: $10
Members, NYC public school students with valid student ID, and children under 12: Free
One-day pass to the Kaufman Astoria Studios Film & Video Gallery only: $6
The Great Redeemer - Robert Rauschenburg
One of the artists who I love the most and has had a profound, yet subtle influence on my art practice is the man I profile today, Robert Rauschenburg. He broke with the dominant art movement of his time (abstract expressionism) and along with his friend and lover Jasper Johns (who I also dig, profile coming soon) set art to create art that was honest, irreverent and new. He and Jasper paved the way for Pop art and a new way of seeing the world. It's this desire to see the wrld in new, exciting and honest ways that has influenced me the most. I'm not interested in reverence or imitation, but I am interested in seeing the world through a child"s eye. Seeing the world honestly and passionately with a healthy dose of detachment and joy...while being very democratic about it all. At the end of the day, art is in the eye of the beholder, so it's all art...is it not?
Robert Rauschenberg (born Milton Ernst Rauschenberg; October 22, 1925 – May 12, 2008) was an American artist who came to prominence in the 1950s transition from Abstract Expressionism to Pop Art.
Rauschenberg is perhaps most famous for his "Combines" of the 1950s, in which non-traditional materials and objects were employed in innovative combinations. While the Combines are both painting and sculpture, Rauschenberg also worked with photography, printmaking, papermaking, and performance. Rauschenberg picked up trash and found objects that interested him on the streets of New York City and brought these back to his studio where they could become integrated into his work. He claimed he "wanted something other than what I could make myself and I wanted to use the surprise and the collectiveness and the generosity of finding surprises. And if it wasn't a surprise at first, by the time I got through with it, it was. So the object itself was changed by its context and therefore it became a new thing."
In a famously cited incident of 1953, Rauschenberg erased a drawing by de Kooning, which he obtained from his colleague for the express purpose of erasing it as an artistic statement. The result is titled Erased de Kooning. In 1964 Rauschenberg was the first American artist to win the Grand Prize at the Venice Biennale (Mark Tobey and James Whistler had previously won the Painting Prize). After that time, he enjoyed a rare degree of institutional support. Rauschenberg lived and worked in New York City and on Captiva Island, Florida until his death on May 12, 2008, from heart failure.
This is a simple note to confess the following thought in front of the world: Thank you God. I am soooooooooooooooo blessed.
Blessed to have an incredible Mother
Blessed to have incredible friends who love me for who I am and expect nothing more.
Blessed that young people can relate to me and I to them, withot weirdness between us.
Blessed to be creative and healthy enough to execute my creative impulses.
Blessed to have a family that loves me and I them.
Blessed to live in the greatest city in the world and have grown up in one of the others.
Blessed to have these cool ass people who come to read my random thoughts and share their thoughts with me.
Blessed to be alive at such an exciting point in human history ( and I am not talking about the election though that's nice too).
Blessed to be aware that I am blessed.
Just because she is singing her @$$ off!!!!!!
This past Friday I was a presenter at the Velocity Magazine Awards celebrating the best in independent entertainment, art and fashion. The show had a glitch or two as one would expect, but all in all it was a well produced and entertaining show. It was inspiring to see so many people doing such great work independent of the major record labels, fashion houses and studios.
Some other New Yorkers were in the house including Baron who won an award for best male artist, DJ Baker of the Doo Dirty radio show who was nominated for best radio program, Deepa Soul and Jessie O.
Keep your eyes open for my Velocity Magazine Awards feature coming soon which will include video clips from the locally televised show, photos and interviews with some of the nominated artists.
Check out a few photos from the show. The official images and some video clips are coming soon.
Hostess April Watts makes a grand entrance
J Rome put on a hot performance
Kevin Ross stole the show
my co-presenter Washington Redskins cheerleader and model April Tyler
Jesse O, DJ Baker and Baron
Anthony Anderson (publisher - Velocity Magazine and show producer), Baron, DJ, Dhario Wonder (recording artist), Ricky Day, Jesse O
Ricky Day (visual artist/photographer), Jesse O(recording artist)
DJ Baker (Da Doo Dirt Radio Show), (Best Male artist) Baron The Artist, Ricky Day (co-presenter best female artist)
This past Friday was the opening reception for White Lies-Black Noise the group exhibition I am a participating artist in. The show opening reception at Rush Arts in Chelsea was a great event with wine, art, great people and even a handful of art world stars dropping in to lend their support and celerate the next generation of great artists.
I am very happy to have been selected as an artist in the show and after seeing everyone's else's work and I am even more humble and grateful. There are some great artists in the show and their work is amazing. I am proud of my own work as well which has been very well received.
White Lies-Black Noise is on display until January 24, 2009 at Rush Arts Gallery located in Chelesea on 26th Street between 10th and 11th Avenues. They are open Tuesday thru Saturday 11am until 6pm. I will be organizing a couple of field trips to the arts district in Chelsea to see our show as well as a couple of other exhibits going on now.
Check out some of the photos from the reception.
you know who on his big night
Curator Derrick Adams, Latoya Ruby Frazier, Ricky Day, Curator Nico Wheadon, Amin Rehman, Philp A. Robinson
My rep Jarvis DuBois
Participating artists, left to right - Amin Rehman, Shani Peters, Ricky Day, Latoya Ruby Frazier, Anthony Fuller and Philip A. Robinson
Fine art photographer Hank Willis Thomas and yours truly
Exhibit curators Derrick Adams and Nico Wheadon
My long time friend and "sister" model Lisa Butler
Blogger, my web designer and close friend Adam Benjamin Irby
Left to right, writer (and best homie) Akim Bryant, Jarvis DuBois, participating artist Latoya Ruby Frazier
Close friend and Eternal Bachelor clothing line founder Fohat Aird
Fashion stylist and photo retoucher David De La Cruz
The talented and beautiful photographer and artist Latoya Ruby Frazier
copyright 2008 rickyday.net
In a new feature on the blog called Urban Pop Conversations, now and then I plan to get beneath the surface with artists, designers, icons, writers and even regular folks like you to get a sense of what's PoPping" just below the surface of so-called pop culture. They'll be conversations with people you don't normally hear from or at the very least about things people don't normally speak about. Basically, Urban Pop Life is a celebration of American pop culture, sub-culture and all the spaces in between. Like my art I want to shed light on the soul within while celebrating the beauty we can all see.
Recently I had a little facebook chat with Lamar Ariel author of the soon to be best seller Ready To Male.
Lamar and I talked about his debut novel Ready To Male and a few other subjects as well.
So where are you from?__How long have you been writing?_
all my life but for different reasons during those times
over the past few years i became obsessed with letters
or perhaps intrigued is a better word...so they became a vessel for therapy, for reflection and self understding...I'm from Chicago
what part of the city?
I have some family roots there
an area called west chatham and hyde park for a bit while i was a child
So what drives you to write?
short answer..life..long answer the inability to process things by just letting them be. I have to write to make sense of things
and to clarify my experiences and thoughts and memories in my head
i hear the latter explanation a lot from writers, have you determined what about writing seems to help?
writing within itself is an act of organization
you have to figure out which words relay the proper emotions
how long a sentence should be before it runs away from the intended meaning
so i believe that writing forces you to organize an experience, especially the retelling or the complication of an experience in a way that you normally just don't do
What inspired you to write the Ready to Male?
for the most part Ready to Male is a collection of letters that i had previously written and simply decided to curate in a book...I wanted to share some of my experiences and some of my thoughts with others who might have had similar experiences or shared similar response to set of events
what has the response been thus far?
response has been amazing!
most people find at least 4 or 5 letters that they can relate to
that was the case for me man, there were a handful of letters that I had to chuckle bout and recognize myself in them...particularly the ones that relate to the subway and the adjustment one makes to live in the city when moving here from somewhere else
When was your first sexual experience?__Who was it with?_
many moons ago, a really cute alien
was it in college, high school?
the moon was full so probably in the summer
What kind of effect do you think that first experience has had on your development as a mature gay man?
you are gay right?
the first experience had no effect and yes im gay
Writers are not known to be the most humble creatures, do you ever feel like you’re being too much of a smart ass in your writing?
in ready to male not at all
there are high brow moments, low brow moments and wonderful thoughts that exist neatly in between, its a very human book
You mention porn a lot in the book are you a big porn fan?
its not mentioned alot
Felt like it to me...lol
maybe that's my issue
LOL might be your lens
what you pay attention to
i've definitely seen, paid for, and invested in my fair share
So is your best friend the same person it was in college?
i actually have five people who make up my best friend as to not burden one poor gay soul with too much
but 1/5 is a guy that i've known since college, yes
Do you have any close female friends with who you share your thoughts and fears and solicit for advice?
yes, read "dear grace"
I did and that's why I asked
im joking with you
lol...i got the joke
lol a few very close, extremely intelligent, beautiful female friends
Let's step back
are these letters completely auto-biographical?
ok...the letters are autobiographical fiction
Do you think all gay men should have a close female friend?
its important to keep the fiction in the phrase
no, i don't think there are any absolutes in life
but it doesn't hurt to have a friend or two who really loves the person you are sometimes ashamed of
How do you feel about the need for female energy in a man’s world? Do you think that it is very important, somewhat important or not important at all and why?
You can include your Mother in that answer...lol
i have so many strong beautiful women in my life
from my mother, grandmother, and friends
I just avoid absolutes
i hear ya
waz da deal with you and absolutes? what did absolute ever do to you?
well she did get me drunk once
she'll do that
she got me too
now i know better
not u too
lol...dude you're crazy...are you currently in a relationship?
(absolute) that ole hussy
lol...yeah she got me
das alright...i taught her a#@ a lesson tho
u seeing anyone?
well u know the readers wanna know da details...
who is he? how long u been dating or together
wait...it is a he right?
it will all be in the next book
and yes it is a he
I already told you i was gay
you know folks like to change up on ya sometimes
well baby i got a book out aint much changing without divine intervention at this point
seriously tho...i ask because i am curious about the effects of a relationship on your art and career
its great to have someone who is supportive of your work and who can be patient with some of the emotional ups and downs that come along the "sharing" of yourself
come along with
yes yes, it's a rare but very nice thing to have
or so i hear anyway
one last question and then gotta run mister
and thanks so much for taking the time to do this
it was fun!
my pleasure sir
i enjoyed it as well
and it is truly time to go
just make sure you spell check
here' the last 2 questions
cuz i wasnt really paying attention
here's the last 2 questions
What are your plans with regards to promoting Ready to Male?__Are you working on a 2nd book yet?_
I am, Ready to Male part Deux
great...any plans for a book tour to promote ready to male?
yes in 2009 i will be in various cities hoping to do a ten city tour which should be solidified by mid december or so
and will also be at various pride events
I've got somethin potentially set up for you in Harlem at Hue-Man Bookstore by the way...we'll talk about that privately. Thanks for your time Lamar and have a great day bro.
THANKS SO MUCH!
I dunno if you actually read my blog...
but it's called Urban Pop Life
and my last question as usual is...Did you Pop today?
make sure you do
Yes the world seems a little scary right now with economy and all, but there is a ton of beauty around us. Beauty brightens even the most stressful day.
This scene was shot 6 blocks from my crib.
I love New York.
In 3 days (counting today) my NYC major gallery debut takes place as I join 5 other incredibly talented artists in White Lies-Black Noise at Rush Arts Gallery and Resource Center in Chelsea. Take a look below at their newsletter for more information.
The show is on view from November 18 until January 24 with an opening reception on Friday November 14.
The group show will be on display at Rush Arts Gallery and Resource Center 526 West 26th street studio 311 (3rd floor). Phone number 212-651-9552. Gallery hours Tuesday - Saturday 11am until 6pm. Free of admission.
Also, for those of you who live in DC Saturday Nov. 15th is the 1st Annual Velocity Magazine Awards and I will be on hand as a presenter. I will post details on how to get tickets and where the show will be broadcast as soon as I have them.
Anyone who knows me knows that I respect and care about young people of all colors and ages. There are thousands of Gay, Lesbian and Transgender teens thrown out of the their Chistian homes by parents who don't understand or appreciate who they are. These kids need a place to go and pop star Cyndi Lauper is out to provide a loving and safe place for them. Check out the information below.
In New York City, a very disproportionate number (up to 40%), of homeless youth identify as LGBT. Even more disturbing are reports that these young people often face discrimination and at times physical assault in some of the very places they have to for help. This is shocking an inexcusable!
That's why my manager, Lisa Barbaris and Cyndi Lauper are collaborating with Colleen Jackson and West End Intergenerational Residence to create the True Colors Residence, (TCR), a permanent supportive housing program for homeless LGBT youth 18-24 years old.
For more information see the links below.
Ladies (and some gentlemen...) Introducing Miguel. He's an up and coming young model here in NYC. He's brand new on the scene and in need of representation. These images are from his first shoot EVER which we did about 5 weeks ago. Casting agents, modeling agencies and other with work for him contact me for more details.
Peep some basics about Miguel:
My name is Miguel vasquez.
My mother's from puerto rico and my father is from new york.
My family supports my decision to try and become a model they just want the best for me and want me 2 be careful.
I model because I want to have a new opportunity and to just try something different and hopefully be successful at it.
I see myself as a successful young family man doing something I love.
No it wasn't my first ambition I always wanted to do something in the field of sports whether it was playing or coaching etc.
My girlfriend is very excited about me becoming a model she thinks its a great opprotunity.
My favorite food is spanish food
My favorite magazine is sportscenter
My advice is to stay strong and to fight the good fight
If you have a career that spans over 30 years, influence countless musicians, visual artists and fashionistas AND marry one of the most beautiful women in the world while managing to age gracefully and still make good music then I'd say you can inspire me. My Urban Pop profile today is really more of a statement about one of the musical artists and human beings who inspires me to be creative without bounds, fearless to express myself and determined to stay this way until the day I die. His name is David Bowie.
David Bowie (IPA: [ˈboʊiː]; born David Robert Jones on 8 January 1947) is an English musician, actor, producer, and arranger. Active in five decades of rock music and frequently reinventing his music and image, Bowie is widely regarded as an innovator, particularly for his work in the 1970s. He has been cited as an influence by many musicians. Bowie is also known for his distinctive baritone voice.
Although he released an album and numerous singles earlier, David Bowie first caught the eye and ear of the public in the autumn of 1969, when his space-age mini-melodrama "Space Oddity" reached the top five of the UK singles chart. After a three-year period of experimentation he re-emerged in 1972 during the glam rock era as the flamboyant, androgynous alter ego Ziggy Stardust, spearheaded by the hit single "Starman" and the album The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars. The relatively short-lived Ziggy persona epitomised a career often marked by musical innovation, reinvention and striking visual presentation.
In 1975, Bowie achieved his first major American crossover success with the number-one single "Fame" and the hit album Young Americans, which the singer identified as "plastic soul". The sound constituted a radical shift in style that initially alienated many of his UK devotees. He then confounded the expectations of both his record label and his American audiences by recording the minimalist album Low – the first of three collaborations with Brian Eno over the next two years. Arguably his most experimental works to date, the so-called "Berlin Trilogy" albums all reached the UK Top Five.
After uneven commercial success in the late 1970s, Bowie had UK number ones with the 1980 single "Ashes to Ashes" and its parent album, Scary Monsters (and Super Creeps). He paired with Queen for the 1981 UK chart-topper "Under Pressure", but consolidated his commercial – and, until then, most profitable – sound in 1983 with the album Let's Dance, which yielded the hit singles "Let's Dance", "China Girl", and "Modern Love".
In the BBC's 2002 poll of the 100 Greatest Britons, Bowie ranked 29. Throughout his career he has sold an estimated 136 million albums, and ranks among the ten best-selling acts in UK pop history. In 2004, Rolling Stone magazine ranked him 39th on their list of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time.
ASHES TO ASHES
One week from today my NYC major gallery debut takes place as I join 5 other incredibly talented artists in White Lies-Black Noise at Rush Arts Gallery and Resource Center in Chelsea. Take a look below at their newsletter for more information.
The show is on view from November 18 until January 24 with an opening reception on Friday November 14.
Also, for those of you who live in DC Saturday Nov. 15th is the 1st Annual Velocity Magazine Awards and I will be on hand as a presenter. I will post details on how to get tickets and where the show will be broadcast as soon as I have them.
One of my favorite artists is back with a new show November 01, 2008 — December 20, 2008
at Deitch Projetcs 18 Wooster Street, New York.
Deitch Projects presents Down, an exhibition of new paintings by Kehinde Wiley, opens at Deitch Projects on November 1, 2008. This exhibition consists of four new large-scale paintings inspired by images of fallen warriors, saints, and classical mythology.
This blogging thing is taking on a life of it's own. I'm starting to get lots of new readers, lots of feedback via email (though I'd really like it if you posted comments instead please...lol) and now I get requests to attend events as a journalist. I'm not sure how anyone could confuse me with a real writer, but it's a nice compliment.
Recently I was invited to a private brunch to celebrate the launch of the very first novel by a talented new writer named Lamar Arariel. The book is called Ready to Male and is available now. I can't review it yet as I have not read it. However, I will be reading in the coming days and will follow with my thoughts and a mini chat with Lamar. Until then discover the book and him for yourself.
I received an from an associate of my named Dee aka Deepa Soul. She's a talented sista who's a singer-songwriter and who was introduced to me by Lee Soulja who is another beautiful soul (more about him at a lata date). Deepa generously told me how much she loves the blog and offered her support. Then she told me about a project she is working on and in a subsequent email sent me a link so that I could hear the song, watch the video, read the press relase and decide whether or not to support it. WELL I AM SUPPORTING THE EFFORT 100%!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Below you will find the press release for the project, a link to the website and the world premiere video. Everyone is understandbly excited about the election as am I, but
In this current climate of political uncertainty, economic instability,and global unrest, an over boding sense of hopelessness and pain pervades the atmosphere. Pundits, preachers, and people alike all look desperately for answers, a revelation or the second coming. As we sit divided, pondering our precarious fate Deepa Soul offers a simple solution, - "STAND TOGETHER"!
Boasting an impressive cast of Independent Recording Artist representing various ethnicities, religious beliefs, sexual orientation, age and political affiliations, "STAND TOGETHER" is a riveting recording and a propitious anthem of hope!
Penned in 2004 in collaboration with Dean Bohana, singer/songwriter Deepa Soul was inspired to record and release this track recognizing it's relevance in this time of crisis. "I called on 30 of my friends and fellow indie recording artist to sing on the song and the response was instantaneous! The most amazing part of this whole experience, was walking in that room to literally see the American Melting Pot right in front of my face! Everybody was talking, laughing and singing together. That in and of itself was an inspiration to me" Deepa recalls. The result is a compelling, uplifting and moving song that engenders a sense of unity and encourages action for change. "Put your hands together....It's time to move on", this recurring line serves as a simple reminder that 'the sum of a whole is greater than it's individual parts.'
This inspirational song is a nostalgic walk down memory's lane to the "We Are The World" collaboration of 1985. Quoting musical icons of the past, the lyrics recite Curtis Mayfield's prediction "If There's A Hell Below We're All Gonna Go,"poses Marvin Gaye's question "What's Going On" and implores us to "live as one" as John Lennon surmises "it's easy if we try."
"Stand Together" is the theme song for SOLUTIONEVOLUTION, a movement to end poverty in America www.solutionevolution.org created by Deepa and her partners husband and wife team Reza Khan and Pamela Schwilk. 50% of the digital download of the song will be donated to two non-profit organizations, New Orleans Labor of Love www.nolaboroflove.org and the 9/11 Freedom Flight FAB Club For Kids www.freedomflight911.com/kids.html
The immediate goal is to send this message to each and every American, and the world over so that we can raise awareness and mobilize. "We recognize that our newly elected President of the United States will need us 'THE PEOPLE' to get our country balanced again." says Deepa.
As mentioned before, I've been a bit more pragmatic about this election cycle than one wold probably imagine an emotional creative type like myself to be. However, yesterday when Barack Obama lost his grandmother who was the rock of his family it really hit home. 3 weeks ago I lost my 100 year old mixed race grandmother who helped raise me. She left this earth just as my greatest accomplishments are at hand. Seeing him go through a very similar thing stirred that special place in my heart.
When I got to the voting booth today I went on a journey. I remembered every story my grandmother ever told me about being raised in Mississippi. Her memories of the hatred, sadness and oppression she witnessed in her childhood and early years and the love, strength and pride that helped her and so many millions more to survive and often thrive despite it all. I remembered the words she shared with me about doing my best, being honorable and living with integrity. About how everything thing she ever did was so that we could have a better life than she did and how giving back is the key to a wonderful and fulfilling life. I remember how strong her faith was that someday it would all be worth it.
Today when I cast my vote, my pragmatic...spiritually mature...thinking I was not gonna be caught up in the hoopla ass...shed a beautiful, sincere and bittersweet tear.
The sacrifices were worth it grandma.
The world is a better place.
I have a different thought about this election than is common in the streets. Of course I think Barack Obama is talented, eloquent, charismatic and supremely qualified to be President of The United States. Of course I am happy as an African-American male to see a man of color on the verge of being elected to the highest office in the land.
What truly moves me...what brings tears to my eyes and gives me a warm feeling inside is this...the American people are as intelligent, open, evolved and ultimately accepting as I hoped, prayed and deep down inside knew us to be.
Clearly we have come a long way. Clearly this man named Obama has stirred something deep inside the soul of the country. However, the bottom line is if we as a nation were as closed minded, hateful and simple as our past could lead one to believe then no speech, no charisma, no media manipulation could move us. My theory is that as a country we tend to play it safe, be complacent and wallow in the old ways until our collective backs are against the proverbial wall. Pearl Harbor, the Great Depression, the Cold War and the Space race are examples of us stepping up when the times called for it.
Now i'm sure that George W. Bush is a nice Christian man from a nice family, but the fact of the matter is he has turned out to be one of the worst Presidents in history. The combination of two wars (one wholly unnecessary) and an economic crisis of historic proportions set the table. Add to this mix the coming of age of a generation that has benefited from decades of sacrifice by their parents and grand-parents and who have been united by the hip hop movement, it's the perfect recipe for real change. This is a special moment in time.
We have an opportunity to be more, do more, achieve more and live up to our full potential. Love quite truly is all there ultimately is and eventually society at large will come to understand this universal truth. I am excited and spiritually moved by the possibility that humankind just may be stirring from a long winters night slumber. If I'm wrong and we're just getting up to take a leak, well let's make it the best leak ever!!!!
No matter what happens today, take a look in the mirror...take a look at a fellow human being on a train and know this...we are one. We're all in this together like it or not. There is no they or them, me or she...there is really only us and we. This election, this moment in time is a new beginning, but we must work everyday in each and every one of our own lives to make this change a reality and a constant.
We have come a long way and we should collectively and individually be proud. We are starting to accept the truth of what we can do when we truly work together.
We're nowhere...without somewhere to go.
We're nothing...without something else to be.
We're...no one without taking the opportunities presented to share our love.
Today is a new day.
Live it ...fearlessly...lovingly and selflessly and watch our every dream come true.
I love u.
After 19 long years Grace Jones, the Queen of live performance, alternative soul, and the effortless melding of music, art and performance is back with her great studio release Hurricane.
When I profiled her last week I had no idea a CD was even in the works, but here it is. It's caller Hurricane and it's a Grace Jones tour de force. Complete with clever lyrics, carribean inspired tracks, top notch production and a healthy dose of the theartical and the sublime it works in ways I forgot music can. She manages to touch the soul, tickle the intelligence and of course make ya wanna hit da floor. Oh yeah, for those of you who engage it's def a 420 affair...feel me?
Check out the two videos below. One is the highly experimental video for the fist single Corporate Cannibal and the first is a live performance of the CD's 2nd single William's Blood, an autobiographical joint about her relationship with her family.
The CD is NOT scheduled to be released in the US and for good reason. It's a really nice piece of work, but well off the American radar of radio ready cloned hits made by the same 3 producers. Fans of Jones earlier work will enjoy the CD immensely as will kids who are looking for something different, but that's likely where the love will end in the U.S.
I for one am happy to see Grace back and doing her singularly inventive thing. I do hope she 'graces' us with a live show or two. I've never had the pleasure of seeing her live show, but I am told it is magical to say the least. hey who knows..maybe I will try to do something personally about getting her here to perform live in NYC.
Welcome back Grace...we missed ya.
"I'm not a woman, I'm not a man, I am something that you'll never understand"
Prince - I Would Die 4 U
I believe in the power of choice and I certainly believe in the concept of personal responsibility. However, I essentially came of age in the late 70's and early 80's and though I feel like I am a fairly well balanced man you'll have to forgive me if I'm a lil "different." When I was figuring out what sexuality was, what it meant to be a man, deciding what I wanted to do with my life and what my place was in the world, Ronald Reagan was President, Wall Street was running amok and Madonna, Michael Jackson and Prince ruled the airwaves. I'm sure the times had an impact on who I became.
These 3 entertainment icons affected my life in very direct ways. Madonna had the least direct impact on me because she was a woman and a white woman at that so what could I possibly have in common with her being a young black teenager? Of course oddly enough years later I realize that she and I are the most alike...more on that at a later date.
Michael Jackson is simply the biggest African-American musical icon in history not to mention the biggest music artist of all time. I was forced to dance to Jackson 5 songs as a boy, grew up loving every song he and his brothers ever recorded and even worked as his stand in on the Thriller video. As a result his impact on me was huge. However, the artist with the biggest impact by far was Prince.
Prince walked to the beat of his own special drummer and deep inside so did I. As I came of age I struggled to reconcile my awakening sexual urges as a young man with my upbringing and belief in God. When my heart was broken or some girl I liked ignored me a Prince song was there to express what I felt. As I grew into a man it was Prince and my admiration of him that lead me to learn to play several instruments, form a band and make music. Lastly, it was my respect for Prince, Michael and Madonna that cemented my understanding of the power of believing in ones self, the value of hard work and the fulfillment of my promise as a creative soul.
If you took a snap shot of my life in prince songs it'd be a real colorful photo. The 25 songs that stand out for me and probably paint a fairly decent image of who I am and have been are:
We Can Fuck
4ever In My Life
When Doves Cry
When 2 R in Love
The Question of U
The Beautiful Ones
Condition of The Heart
If I Were Your Girlfriend
Under The Cherry Moon
Another Lonely Christmas
Sometimes It Snows in April
How Come U Don't Call Me?
The Ballad of Dorothy Parker
All The Critics Love U in New York
Below I have included a bio on Prince from Wikipedia and some images I found online. I can't include any videos because his stubborn a$$ had all content removed from the internet. (He can't help it, he's older now and hasn't yet yielded to the reality of the world wide web 2.0 - he will in time).
The Trinity of Michael, Madonna and Prince may have screwed my generation up in the head a bit, but if we were really paying attention they also taught us alot about love, life and God.
peace and be funky.
Prince Rogers Nelson (born June 7, 1958 in Minneapolis, Minnesota) is an American musician. He performs simply as Prince, but has also been known by various other names, among them an unpronounceable symbol, leading fans and critics to dub him The Artist Formerly Known As Prince or simply The Artist.
Prince is a prolific artist, having released several hundred songs both under his own name and with other artists. He has won six Grammy Awards and an Academy Award, and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2004. In 2004, he was named as the top male pop artist of the past 25 years by ARC Rock on the Net, and Rolling Stone Magazine ranked Prince #28 on their list of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time.
From his early material, rooted in R&B, soul and funk, Prince has expanded his musical palette throughout his career, absorbing many other genres including pop, rock, jazz, new wave, psychedelia and hip hop. Some of his primary influences include Sly Stone, Curtis Mayfield, Jimi Hendrix, Joni Mitchell, James Brown and Carlos Santana. The distinctive characteristics of his early-to-mid 1980s work, such as sparse and industrial-sounding drum machine arrangements and the use of synthesizer riffs to serve the role traditionally occupied by horn riffs in earlier R&B, funk and soul music, were called the "Minneapolis sound" and have proved very influential.
The last time I actually wrote about what's going on with me I was a little sad. My grandmother had passed on and a few other things were just so so at best. The skies are a little bluer now. I am swamped in work getting ready for the opening of the group exhibition I'm in called White Lies-Black Noise, just finished a very successful private salon event, I'm setting up multiple shoots for my new portrait series This is The Life and I even found time to squeeze in some social events.
I went to a brunch for a new author yesterday, had diner with my friends Akim and Marcus on Saturday (and of course immediately returned to the studio to work), and I even got to catch a couple of football games yesterday...well art of two games anyway.
How was your weekend? Did you POP?
Oh yeah, I did that too (wink).
It's been awhile since I was into a pop or hip hop star, but T.I. is cool as hell! Check out this hilarious interview on Chelsea Lately.