Drop-off day for Chain Letter here
Update from Samson Gallery here
BOSTON--The Chain Letter show at Samson Gallery is a big, messy, vibrant, crazy-salad of an installation with some surprise-guest artwork and some is-it-art vignettes. Well, here, let gallery owner Camilo Alvarez, describe it: "It's awesome, yes?" Yes, indeed. The intrepid dealer installed for two days straight, ultimately placing some 1100 paintings, sculptures and works on paper in two spaces--ground floor and basement. The ground floor contained Todd Pavlisko's solo show, which was just about camouflaged by the art around it.
I arrived at 5:00 p.m.expecting an around-the-block line, like at the Sideshow art-a-palooza in Brooklyn this past winter. But no. People came and went freely. While the gallery was always full, there was no queue to get in, and it was never so crowded you couldn't move. Let's take a look.
This wrapped package and the mail on the floor provide the perfect visual metaphor for the Chain Letter show. But wait. Is it an installation or actually, you know, mail? I don't know
The view from the Thayer Street walkway. The weather was sunny and a balmy 78 degrees. Lots of people were out
The doorway in is just to my left. We're going to start here and work our way down the long wall in a space that is about twice as long as it is wide
Larger paintings were just propped against the wall. The big drawback for me is that there were no names. I don't know many Boston artists, so I can't identify the work. But I suspect that even the artists who know one another couldn't identify the makers of most of these works
More . . .
And more. The big installation in the center is Todd Pavlisko's solo show--or at least the show that was a solo until a few days ago
Working our way down the long wall . . .
And taking a quick pivot to look at the opposite wall
In the back room
More back room. Several artists mentioned that the piece on the weight bench, detail below, was sent in by Richard Serra--could be; it looks like a Serra--and that Kiki Smith had a piece downstairs. I never did identify which might have been hers
The Serra, on the bench. Maybe
Best look in the show: Erica Aubin, emerging artist
Heading down the stairs. I walked these same stairs on Wednesday when the walls were almost empty
Overheard as I was standing by this wall: "All of these artists are looking for gallery representation. Think about it."
More . . .
. . .With the installation spillling onto the floor, below
I like that one artist put up a Post-It with his name: Corey Artis (I think that's what it said). Corey: Next time, print it
One more look downstairs . . .
. . . before we climb back up. The light at the far end of the gallery is where we came in
Another view of the crowd, with a closeup of a small sculpture--about a handspan wide--below
Visitors spilling back out onto the walkway . . .
and from there onto pedestrian Thayer Street
If you visit Boston, the South End galleries are concentrated at 450 and 460 Harrison Avenue--right and left here--which actually open onto Thayer Street, with Harrison Avenue in the distance. There's free parking for visitors in several adjacent lots as well as on the street, though there's a two-hour limit for street parking.
Since I'm in Massachusetts for the summer, I'll take you to a few more galleries over the next few weeks.