Saturday, November 01, 2008

If you don't have a note from your doctor, you are no longer allowed to be an artist.

Peter Saul. Laylah Ali. Sue Coe. Enrique Chagoya. Jane Irish. Daniel Heyman. Art Spiegelman.

They were all at PAFA today. And about 30 people showed up.

Philly, I hate you.

Lynda Barry got a crappy audience here too. WHAT THE HECK IS WRONG WITH US?!?!? I know there are many smart, funny, interesting artists in Philly! And Peter freaking SAUL is in town! WITH Spiegleman! And Laylah ALI! And although it may be permissible not to know who Enrique Chagoya is, since he's really huge on the west coast, he's a freaking genius, and DANG! Sue Coe! Everything she does is great! It was like international art genius day in Philly and nobody freaking showed! They all talked about their work and took questions and then hung around and chatted afterwards. Yup. HUNG AROUND AND CHATTED.

I got Peter Saul to autograph a catalog for friend and he drew a little self portrait in it! I lent Spiegleman and Sue Coe a pen! Laylah Ali admired my baby, who is also close personal friends with Spiegleman! This was all very cool, but it should not have been possible! These people should have been mobbed by fans! Where were the 1026 people? Don't they know Peter Saul is their god? Where were the 10 million grubby art students in the city? Where were the suckups? Where were the faculty from our three local art schools? Where was everyone under 50? ARGH!

WHY, when freaking Larry Gagosian was in town at Penn last year, did they have to open another room with a video silmulcast to accommodate all the people? If people know enough to go see Gagosian, who was depressing as HELL by the way, why aren't they smart enough to come see Peter Saul? And even if they're too prissy to like Peter Saul, they should be able to get behind Chagoya or Laylah Ali, who both make totally elegant work. NOBODY from my esteemed art school showed up, and that is lame. You know who was there? Charles Burns. And the artblog ladies. And Sarah McEneaney.

Why? Why? Why? Did someone poison the candy corns? Did the Pabst run dry in Pennsylvania, so everyone went to Maryland?

(If you're reading this and you're not in the art world, these people are about as good as we get. Peter Saul is like our Robert DiNiro or somebody. Maybe Redford. The rest of them are Hellen Mirren, Judy Densch, Paul Giamati, Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie. Gagosian is like, oh, Michael Eisner.)

/rant



Enrique Chagoya (Sorry, I don't have a title.)

13 comments:

Wes said...

Maybe no one could get a sitter. That's my excuse for not doing anything cool.

Anonymous said...

I was there, actually I was on the panel. Anyway, thanks for the blog notice. ANd you are right, myself not included, this was the best and most approachable art panel in Philly in years. What a fund day it was. Congrats to the Academy and keep it coming.
Daniel

Anonymous said...

sorry for the misspelled word, it was a fun day, and more than that. an inspiring one!

Sam Simpson said...

It was a really great time. I'm totally thrilled that the academy put it together. You're right: go them! Thanks for the talk- and for showing those images again. That project is devastatingly sad, but I'm glad you are doing it. I hope it will be showing around here again soon.

Sam Simpson said...

And yeah, Wes, maybe the sitters all ran out of Pabst and left the state. I'm trying to imagine that everyone was busy working for the Obama campaign so that I can avoid hitting people with my purse when I see them on the street.

Anonymous said...

Hey Sam, since you asked... I am showing a group of the Abu Ghraib pictures at the Lawrenceville School opening next Saturday, 2-4pm, as well as a group of portraits of African American Philadelphian Fathers who sat for me last spring and told me their (very different from my own) life stories... makes for a very interesting and oddly uplifting combo I hope...
daniel

Anonymous said...

I was there too... And you re right, it was one of the most exciting things happening in the Philly art scene in ages...Mingling with Sue Coe, Layla Ali, Enrique Chagoya, JanE Irish, Peter Saul, Daniel Heyman and Art Spiegelman all at once? It was like being in a room full of geniuses and you could not believe you were lucky enough to be there.. The Phillies drew millions of people on Friday. Hmmm....
PS: i hope Sarah McEneaney's opening at Locks gallery on Friday will draw the crowd she deserves.
Vincent.

Sam Simpson said...

Yeah, wasn't it great? I feel like I got really thoroughly fed, as an artist, and will have stuff to think about for weeks because of this symposium.

But you know, I think people will show up for Sarah's opening. My theory is that people in Philly show up for Philly stuff. The Lynda Barry talk was up against a talk at Jenny Jaskey, and there were openings at Gallery Joe and Pentimenti last night, so maybe that was it. Still....

Rob Matthews said...

I was at Gallery Joe. That is my excuse.

Sam Simpson said...

Oh geez, Rob! I don't REALLY need the doctor's notes from individual artists. I want a big note from Philly in general saying, "Sorry, Philadelphia artists had a head cold that day, please excuse our absence!" Individual artists do not suck. We just suck in aggregate. I regret missing that talk at Gallery Joe too..

And Daniel- I'm looking forward to seeing that work! Provided my stinking head cold (real, I swear, thus the bile in my post) lets up by then.

Dano MacNamarrah said...

Sam~I've been unwell for a couple of weeks, and had no clue about this fabulous event.

That said, my beloved cat Hello Newman was dying. I wouldn't have left his side, even if Baby Jesus showed up. I still can't talk to anyone. His death shattered me.

Sam Simpson said...

Oh honey, I know that! You don't need a note! Even if you'd skipped the lecture to wash your hair, you are an artist for life by virtue of your fabulous hats alone! I'm just mad at all the faculty at my school. They need notes. Nobody else.

Ash said...

DAMN ALIVE

Dude that is definitely depressing to hear. I love in Atlanta and the best thing we've gotten recently has been a lecture from Jeff Koons and another from Kehinde Wiley. I'd much rather talk to Peter Sauls, Art Spiegelman or Enrique Chagoya(who is amazing!) any day.

But at least you were there, right? If people are going to be sorry and not take advantage that's on them, right? I would have loved to be there.