I was not at the taping of this episode, so I thought it best not to blog this week. However, if you would like for me to respond to the episode, please post your questions, and I will reassess. Thank you for all of your comments on the public art episode. It has certainly divided viewers, many of whom root for the everyman. I stand by our choice, given the preconditions and criteria of the challenge.
When are you people going to see what we the audience sees ... that Miles Mendelhal is an actor and just a plain flake as a tortured artist just as Eric said.
I have been a professional graphic designer, product packaging, illustration, photography and I see the same thing ... Oh! excuse me ... I have to go take a nap so I can think about what else I should write.
I completely agree with Zermeno. Miles' pieces just upset me, because they've made it on the show. From what I've seen from Miles are these simplistic pieces that he explaines with these complex descriptions that don't fit. He is just using his words to backup work he hasn't put any heart into. In the most recent episode he didn't even go with the challege and yet he is still safe. The piece that he did where he just fell asleep really aggravated me. I don't understand how you guys took that as being vunerable; I took that as laziness. He hasn't really shown vunerablity or himself in his work.
I believe that he is wasting the opprotunity that he has been given. It's upsetting. There are other people, other artists out there who are more deserving.
I think this episode was a good follow-up to last week's controversial downfall of Eric. No matter how upset we were last week or who we sided with, this weeks "child" challenge located and cornered the humanity of the artists in a universal way none of us can really isolate ourselves from as we all had a child hood.
I didn't think any of the art stole the show. What did it for me and refreshed me were the seemingly unforced emotions played out on film. Even the usual actors didn't attempt to fake us out with counterfeit heart tugging due to either a lack of acting talent to do so or a lack of balls to try. In particular: Ryan, Nicole, Abdi, and Jaclyn touched me with their varying accounts of their own childhood and their emotional responses during the challenge as they created their art pieces.
Jaclyn's recount of a lonely introverted childhood provided insight into if not redeemed her icy behavior throughout much the challenge.
Abdi's usual everyman smile or his portrayal of himself as a super-hero couldn't camouflage that he felt like much more a sidekick than the dashing hero in his youth. His completed piece screamed that, not sure why the judges didn't pick up on that or appreciate it.
Nicole, I think, is the Jaclyn that will be once she grows butterfly wings and springs from that tree of ice. Nicole, as usual, put great care and thoughtfulness into her piece: a spectacle that comforted any angst the challenge conjured up in me as I also had to face some of my own childhood guytrash. Mostly, my childhood mirrors Jaclyn's.
Ryan, now here is the one that almost caused me to show emotion in the form of crying because I too was very close to my mother before religion and reality went to war in my head and religion got handled. I too saw the devastation of war below and the effulgence of remembering happier times before we got smarter than our parent(s) above, in Ryan's piece. Again, I'm not sure what the judges were looking for. They must have been mesmerized by that masterpiece that Miles made, which for some strange reason made me crave a cup of coffee and made me think of cats. The piece gave zero insight into Mile's childhood.
For the many who think the judges can’t see that Miles is playing everyone on the show: Selling art is about sophisticated acting during the selling of the art/ artist to the client. Why is it so hard to understand art dealers recognizing a natural salesperson in the making and then responding to him in kind? Mile’s very good on every deception needed to be a success in the art world. I aspire to his game level.
Since I've long since given up on this show actually choosing a deserving artist to go on to win the competition, the last reason I have for watching any more episodes is..I would love to see Miles win so he gets a show in the Brooklyn Museum. He'll make a complete fool out of himself, and every "judge" connected to the show. What started out as a good premise for an inspiring show that could really have been used as a tool to help other aspiring artists understand the inner workings of the field, quickly descended into a flaming train wreck..thanks to phony, pretentious attitudes and flat, mean spirited commentary from the people put there to make informed critiques on the validity of these same people's projects. I call them projects, because given wacky assignments, and so little time to execute them, all you're going to get is a bunch of hacky crafts thrown together at the last minute. Ryan, a pure realist,got eliminated before he was even able to utilize his true talents due to the fact that none of the challenges thus far would have been an appropriate subject for him to effectively display that talent. The very real fact that even I might have been able to win the last challenge is a perfect example of my point. That guy can paint rings around me, and he could have come up with a great body of work for a museum display. I'd have put on a show as bad as the one Miles will put on. Or worse.
This show is a perfect little microcosm of the art world: bad art being justified by convoluted explanations. The art world loves to shoot down talent like Ryan because many could never do what he does and he makes them look bad. So to survive, they redefine what it means to be a good artist.
Peregrine mentioned a few magic words in relation to her awful piece, among them...AIDS! Her piece was instantly "heavy". Please! These judges are as vapid and lacking as the art they venerate. If you could have put any great realist painter from the past on this show, they'd be sure to be voted off with a weak and ludicrous justification. BUT REALITY T.V. LOVES CONTROVERSY; IT THRIVES ON IT. So rest assured of more ridiculous decisions.
Right now, am rooting for either Abdi or Mark to win...Ryan had some good (unnoticed) moments...but he was playing too much to the judges this week & got kicked out too early.
Nicole's work - Two pencils in a wax covered tray representing her & her sister??? Dreary.
Is the old 1960's Anti Realist Dogma still in place? Also...Abdi & Mark (ath their sometimes ignored best) can truly comminicate...and they can meld some quality technical skills in also.
Guess I'm just an art troglodyte who likes to see a bit of style, balance, line quality, & other technical virtuosity - married to a fresh, creative pic. Blame my many craftsman and carpenter ancestral genes!!!
Not much dif between Nicole's piece & Ryan's unusually poorly crafted piece...(Here Simon was the big saboteur of Abdi also...WANTED to see Mom as Superhero!!!)
I love the show. You are creating conversations around conceptual art. I work for an art organization devoted to contemporary art in a town devoted to landscapes and water colors.
We are considering getting satellite tv so we can offer a public viewing of the show as a program.
I hope the producers and editors focus on the process and the critiques--not the personality conflicts.
I felt Jaclyn should have gone home. Her work was bad. Her primary colors are: 1) I despise myself. 2) you despise me 3)I despise you. And she uses her hotness to highlight those colors.
One thing though--her affinity for nude bathroom posing was in retrospect very poignant after the - 'eating lunch alone in a bathroom stall.' story
Jaclyn in a tree is much less interesting to us (and evidently less inspiring to her)- than Jaclyn in a stall.
There's a lot of artists I know in Seattle who have been watching this show and unfortunately there are a lot who think it's pretty lame. The challenges have been ridiculous, you might as well make it a show where they eat bugs and jump out of airplanes for all the good the challenges have done to show who the best artist is.
But the worst of it is the judges (in my opinion), who spout out stuff as if they were FACTS instead of voicing their opinions on the matters at hand. If you really want this show to be about art and artists you need to jettison your judges and put actual artists on the panel. If you don't want it to be about art and artists, you're doing pretty well with it.
Why aren't there more artists on the judge's panel? Shouldn't there be at least 1 permanent fixture? Critics and gallery owners have their place, but previous shows in this format have all included a judge who was actively working in the field.
Also, I don't have the same kind of access to the producers that you do, so can you let them know that some of us out here want to see more critique? Not only would it serve to educate fans with no formal art education, but it would also clear up some questions about why certain contestants are eliminated. Even extended cuts of the crits that we could watch on the website would be preferable to walking away from an episode thinking that the judges are playing favorites based on personality and the stereotype of the oddball artist.
Who would be your choice to win this challenge? who do you think should be cut this episode? Do you agree with the judges Decision? Last week your initial comment seem to prefer the "Scales" sculpture, then you seemed to do a 180 turn when you felt the other judges were not in consensus with you. Who made the most successful work and why? I do feel sculpture does not translate well to a flat medium like tv or photography, although there are exceptions. All of the work this episode for me failed well! As far as Peregrine's piece wining, I think she could have made it stronger just by taking the chalk and turning it into cigarette's, speaks volumes, "keep it simple stupid!"
I would've enjoyed your commentary on this particular episode where frankly, I found Nicole's purple pipe cleaner glasses to be the most pleasurable visual in the gallery exhibit.
I can't help but wonder who came up with these challenges, matched them to guest judges (or the other way around), and sequenced them. We realize this is Season 1, and that means the format will be adjusted to make improvements - or at least one might hope - assuming there's a Season 2.
Not only did I see little (no?) connection between Will Cotton and the challenge, but I am astounded that these artists didn't take more latitude. I realize they were hampered by limited time and materials (as usual), but childhood as inspiration offers a breadth of personal experience to mine. With few exceptions, what we got was work that looked like it was made by children, rather than work inspired by childhood.
As for Peregrine's sculpture, both images on this site and on television aren't easy to make out. I'd be interested to know if you saw it in person, and what you thought of it.
William Wray, your explanation of Miles has convinced me that if ever I am going to purchase an original work of art, I will definitely stay away from the artist. If the work doesn't speak to me without his bogus explanation, I will pass.
This weeks challenge was pretty difficult. It showed which artists focus too much on formalistic technique and not enough on their own personal viewpoint. Jaclyn's weaknesses were really shown in that perhaps this proud sexual being we see in her painting is all just armor? Even though she was in the bottom two something very raw was revealed that the viewers haven't seen before. Ryan really did fall short. I think he knew how to make it work, but the idea didn't come to fruition in enough time and so the piece fell apart. As for Peregine..wow. What an amazing piece. I like how different it was from her other sketchy paintings. Again something else was revealed and I love how she took something negative, but was able to balance it and keep it playful/questionable/mysterious. That's a very fine line, so kudos on that one. Abdi however, listened too hard to what Simon had to say and completely lost sight of his goal. One thing about his work-CONSISTENCY. Apart from this week's piece, there is no doubt of his hand on things even in his sculptural works. If I saw his work on the street, I'd know it was his, and I think that says a lot. Now, As for Miles....hmmm. Ok let me say this, there is a point when people become too self-confident about their work and think there is nothing to learn. What bothered me more than that was the fact that he acknowledged avoiding the challenge and "doing his own thing", meanwhile at judging/gallery show he made up some story that wasn't true. Now, I know there is no way for the judges to see this after the fact, but just think about your decisions. I've known Artists who had Miles style and were completely earnest. I'm trying to remain objective here, but I really think he's a fake. And it hurts to say that because, at the beginning he was the one I most enjoyed.
I think this show is fun. A creative break from all the nattering of the Houswives franchise. It is a competition and these artists chose to be in it. The artists get to try different things than they are used to and we get to watch them and try to learn from their processes. Then we watch them sell their art.
Will it be possible to see these works in person at some point? The TV screen just doesn't do much for the art.
Ryan my dear, you are an amzaing young man. Your art is incredible. You have a wonderful talent and I KNOW you will make your mark on this world. You have an awesome laugh that brings a smile to everyone who hears it. And you exposed to the camera and to the public some very deep emotions about your relationship with your Mother. I do pray that you and she will be able to accept one another for who you each are. You should not have been the loosing artist this week, and you gave us a project that showed honest and true emotion of being a child and making art for your Mommy. This TV show isn't reality. But your art and your family are. Embrace them. God bless you.
I love the show...but I've noticed two typos on the website in the last two minutes (one is above in Jeanne's blog "thanksk" and another is no China Chow finishing touches should be discusses, not "discuss." Sorry...it's a small thing, but it's Bravo TV for goodness sake. :)
Hope you do comment on this episode Jeanne! I'd like to see if it's true that you would have tried to save Ryan, as Jerry notes in his blog. LOL. Hope the show in Europe went well!
OR Miles is a damn fine performance artist. If you google him there's something somewhere on the web about him telling a friend prior ti filming the show that he intended to play a character on the show, somewhat based on a few of his traits.
Topchefer I just wanted to mention I think Miles is artistically talented on top of his good gamesmanship. Despite my own more traditionally grounded work, I can appreciate intellectually rationalized conceptual art. It challenges me to find a way to bring that element into my painting. What can be frustrating is that conceptual art has divisively dominated for so long it’s made the art world to one-dimensional. It's time for more diversity of skill sets and I think a hybrid of concept with good fundamentals is what's coming to naturally bring need balance the art world.
I learn so much from your blog. I like this show, but I like each episode more when I read your blog. I just don't get it all on my own, the people I know, or any of the strangers I bother. I google all your references, and I don't know much, so I'm googling it all. Thus, your blogs are inevitably too short for my deficit of art education. Not to be all needy, but like Bill Murray in What About Bob, "Gimmee, gimmee, gimmee, I need, I need!" Thanks for the education insofar, btw.
Here's what I'm getting from this show --
Judges: "Miles, it's cat poop on a paper plate." Miles: "Solitude, Pain, Need, Earth, Escapism, Peace, Innocence, Herpes." Judges: "Deep, we can see that."