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New York

Sara Tecchia Roma New York

Exhibition Detail
"And Who Are You?"
529 W 20th Street, 2nd Floor
New York, NY 10011


December 18th, 2007 - January 26th, 2008
Opening: 
December 18th, 2007 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM
 
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Sara Tecchia Roma New York and Saatchi Online are pleased to present "And Who Are You? Work from Saatchi Online"--a group exhibition of artists whose work is on view at the Saatchi Online website. The exhibition is curated by critic Ana Finel Honigman.

Since its debut a year ago, Saatchi Online has made its mark as an ever-expanding, democratic network of artists who can boast an art-school education and a roster of credentials, as well as outsiders whose age, location, style or preoccupations have kept them away from the recognition they crave and often deserve. The website now averages over 50 million hits a day and is ranked in the top 500 websites in the US.

In a September interview with England's Guardian newspaper, Charles Saatchi expressed his desire that Saatchi Online should function as "an artists' community, where artists can load up their own work, visitors can browse. You don't have to pay a dealer 50% commission." Saatchi's motivation for establishing the site was not only to enable artists to avoid tying themselves financially to brick-and-mortar galleries, but also to circumvent what he decried as a high level of art-world inbreeding and snobbery. As he put it, "Dealers tend to buy artists that other artists they already show recommend. If you're not in the loop, if you didn't go to the right art school, if you don't know the right people who have the right dealers, it's very hard to break in."

To showcase the site's wide-ranging cache of talent, Saatchi Online's London Correspondent, Ana Finel Honigman, has gathered known and neophyte New York-based artists registered on Saatchi Online for the first exhibition of Saatchi Online artists in the U.S., entitled "And Who Are You? Work from Saatchi Online."

Whether thought to oneself or spoken to another, the question "and who are you?" can be the start of a cocktail party confrontation, an opening gambit for flaunting one's own CV or the catalyst for a profound crisis of existentialist and creative purpose. Working in various mediums, each of the artists in "And Who Are You? Work from Saatchi Online" uses Saatchi Online as a platform to address questions about how the established art world parcels out or responds to value, fame, favoritism, integrity and pretension.

The artists selected for the show include Boston-born and Brooklyn-based Eric Doeringer, who grants gallery goers' wishes for affordable small canvases of images made by their favorite art stars by selling his 'Bootlegs' series outside hot Chelsea galleries, inside international art fairs, at the Whitney Biennial and now on Saatchi Online. Here, he will present an array of his souvenir-scale versions of well-known paintings, sculptures, collages, drawings and works in other media by more than a hundred contemporary artists.

Jay Batlle, who has shown extensively abroad as well as at the Whitney Museum, New York's Thomas Erben Gallery, L.A's The Happy Lion and Blum & Poe Gallery will present an ongoing body of work entitled "The Minimalist Series," paintings that combine fragments of teaser lines and recipes from Mark Bittman's New York Times culinary column, "The Minimalist."

New York- and Paris-based photographer Sara White Wilson, who has not previously shown in New York, will present an installation of images shot on the streets of Paris and Berlin in which unintended juxtapositions between peeling posters and graffiti markings illuminate larger cultural dichotomies.

The artist team Fame Theory will present a performance lampooning artist pretension. Loki-like social commentators, Fame Theory members mix Ivy League academic backgrounds in economics and sociology with sophisticated satire to emerge as agent provocateurs channeling Andy Warhol, Andy Kaufman and everyone who eagerly wished that JT Leroy was intended to be an actual hoax, not the wan brainchild of another hopeless wannabe. Examining a similar theme is recent MFA graduate Airyka Rockefeller, whose series of photographs test how much of herself an artist ought to show, when youth and cool are prioritized so highly in the contemporary art community.

Photographer Bill Durgin, whose surrealist fashion imagery could be seen in Paper Magazine's recent fashion issue, will show self portraits from his series figurations, that use physical distortion to question limitations of artistic identity and signal to the way artists' ideas can be oversimplified and pushed out of context.

For his debut art exhibition contribution, video and sketch comedy director Joshua Powell, of Dilettante Films, will show work deriding discrepancies between hipsters' hedonistic urges and aspirations for the moral high ground.

Questioning the legitimacy of moving art in an on-line marketplace, German-born and New York-based video artist Nora Klumpp will present a video game demonstrating the disquieting possibilities of flexible on-line identities. In the same vein, Amsterdam-based artist Eva Roovers will offer samples of her "How to become a famous artist" kit. Finally, Brooklyn-based Miranda Maher will stage a three-part installation entitled "The Anxiety of Influence", inspired by Harold Bloom's theories on creative influence, and artist/ fashion designer/ musician William Lemon III will contribute pieces from his multi-media art-opera to highlight the importance of timeless creative inspiration and the significance of pushing past a desire for immediate artistic validation.

To supplement the exhibition, Ana Finel Honigman will spotlight each of the artists selected for the show on Saatchi Online's daily magazine.

Ana Finel Honigman is a New York- and London-based critic. She writes about contemporary art for fashion and art magazines including British Vogue, style.com, Art in America, Artnet.com, Art Journal, Dazed & Confused, UK Harpers Bazaar and the Guardian Art & Architecture blog. She is also Arts Editor for Alef, a new fashion magazine focused on Middle Eastern culture and style. A Sarah Lawrence graduate, Ana has completed a Masters degree and is currently a PhD candidate in the History of Art at Oxford University.

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