Art, Intrigue and
a "Ho" Eat the Howl Festival
Written by Dennis
Photographed by Liberation Iannillo
August 17-24, the Lower East Side of Manhattan
was host to the Howl! Festival. This festival
is a collaboration of L.E.S. artists who have
endeavored to revitalize the art scene in this
part of town. Supposedly the L.E.S. used to have
a very cool art scene back in the 70's, although
from what I have heard a large part of it was
either drunks spilling their paint or punks with
a can of glue and a dream. Either way it was
art, I suppose.
This was not the
case however for the exhibitions which graced this
ever-so-slowly-gentrified part of town. I attended
a whole bunch of these shows, and to my surprise,
there was some awesome stuff (oh, by the by I have
a BFA in Art History, so I know my shit).
with host Brooks, editor of Talent
in Motion Magazine.
the ever so charming, Café Del Mar, there was a tiny art show
in the lower part of the café. When I say
lower part, I really mean the seventh level of
Hell! It was so hot that my mascara was threatening
to stream down my face! But I digress.
One artist in particular that caught my attention was Katherine (yup, that's
it no last name). She had three pieces exhibited and they all used a powerful
mixture of bright colors. They were images of stars, such as Annie Lenox and
Dolly Parton. I liked them and didn't like them at the same time. I really
appreciated the detail she appointed to the faces, yet the bodies were underdeveloped
this point of few to a fellow NewYorkCool'er, it
seems that the artist herself had overheard me
and when I turned to look at her she gave me the
Eye Of Death. Well, of course I didn't stop talking
about her art. And let me say just for the record
that I did make positive comments along with the
negative ones. So I finished my vodka tonic (I
bow to the bartender at the Café Del Mar,
who poured me a extra strong drink), and went upstairs.
I saw some friends and proceed to chitchat about
dis and dat, and as I turn to see who is about,
I see Katherine! Well, apparently Katherine was
vexed. At the time, I thought she had followed
me upstairs and was plotting my death, poised to
knife me there in the street! However that was
not the case, and we all went home alive that evening.
As I walked home,
ever so casually trying to pick up a trick, I though
about how insensitive I had been. It's easy to
rip somebody down, and that just isn't my style.
Samm Cohen, www.sammcohen.com
very next day I emailed Katherine and asked her
about what she was trying to convey with her images.
She emailed me back promptly and told me that for
her the bodies weren't as important as the face,
the most important part of a body are the eyes, in that they are the "Windows
of the Soul". Lesson learned: Katherine cool art girl, not evil village
.check out her stuff at Kateye.com.
So, after my near
death experience at the Café Del Mar, I
knew that the Howl Festival was going to be fun!
Now I don't want
to bore you all with a step by step of each gallery
that I visited, but the highlight of the whole
8-day exhibition was the show at The Outlaw Art
Gallery, on Essex and Houston. The artist Boris
Lurie, a Holocaust survivor, had some powerful
images mixing sexuality and Holocaust horrors.
Q. Sakamaki, a war photographer for a Japanese
newspaper exhibited five disturbing photos of the
devastation in Iraq. And finally but certainly
not least, art star Spider Webb showed a cartoon/tattoo
homage to 9/11.
On a lighter but similar note, the Cuchifrito Gallery hosted Cartoonisiada,
at which contemporary cartoon artist exhibited their work. The amazing curator,
Buxton Midyette, really put together a great show. Leslie Sternbergh's "Pubic
Hair" illustration was a personal favorite:)
Exhausted but enlightened
am I as I look back on this past uber-week and
reflect on all the lovely and intense art that
I have seen. The Howl Festival's art exhibitions
exceeded my expectations, and left me basking in
the glow of Light that is High Art.