Tuesday, March 08, 2011

Pulse 2011 NYC

      What happened, Pulse? Was I rushed? Hungry? Or were you just small? You were definitely smaller than last year. You were in the Metropolitan Pavilion on 18th, right in the middle of the city, nearly. Last year, you were where Scope is now, which encourages even more qualitative description in the form of contrasts between you and Scope, and only serves to confuse the two more.
Here's a contrast: 20x200 and Jen Bekman projects gave out free swag bags including useful art tools, canned coffee, chips, and way too much breath-freshening (mints, tongue brush) to avoid insult.  A little art fair humor, aimed more at art proles than VIPs.  Scope, my last stop, was all about the free beer, and wine, and condoms.
      It appears that what caught my eye was mostly based on personal affect, here.  Or maybe Pulse really does lean towards more work by women, more focused on craft, and often concerned with technology.  In fact, the frequency of animals and machines I've seen at it everywhere gives it a perpetually cybernetic theme. Galleries from Canada and the West coast make a good showing.  I often wonder how much local galleries debate whether they can just lure collectors in town for the fair directly to them without renting a booth.  I also skipped last year's repeats, of which I saw plenty.

Cindy Wright, "Web of Tears" at Mark Moore gallery
She makes big juicy paintings from closeups. Non-human subjects fare better - "bacon cube" was another highlight, but I like starry rhizomes, even with maudlin titles.

Laura Ball
These were exquisitely detailed, delicate watercolors, primarily of animals made of animals, were just spread out on a table. I suppose there were too many and they wanted to sell as many as possible.

Tim Etchells
Oh. More neon. Can we stop? With the neon? We get it.  Then again, it always does get my attention.

Carla Camino
Ironically, I cannot find a web presence for her.  Maybe I mis-transcribed her name.  She had some less impressive work up amongst this assortment of small drawings, but I dug this one.

Kevin Bourgeouis - "Inventions of Love (Natural Discourse)"
Syncronicity!  Nina at Causey in Williamsburg got back to me super fast after we chatted.  She is clearly a networker to emulate.

I don't think I liked anything in the artist project spaces upstairs ("Impulse").
Still, so:
Pulse: hip but friendly.

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