Some random links curated for being related to the Western desert as a muse to visual culture, unless selected for just being interesting.
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Newsman Stan Chambers passed away at the age of 91. He retired in 2010 after 63 years with KTLA Los Angeles and credited for being the talking head for the first on-air live broadcast, an long vigil for three-year-old Kathy Fiscus falling in a well. Another early assignments was reporting on A-bomb testing in Nevada. Via an interview posted on YouTube Chambers described how station manager Klaus Landsberg managed an unauthorized broadcast. “We couldn’t get near the field, because it was all top secret. Klaus sent a crew to Las Vegas and put them on top of one of the hotels." Chambers said. "They kept the camera open for the flash of light that would come on when the blast went off.” When high ratings proved how popular the testing was (even casinos used it as a tourist draw) broadcasts were allowed. KTLA handled the first live, national feed of a Nevada a-bomb explosion in 1952.
Chambers on-air news persona may have also started the trend of television broadcasters adding authenticity to Sci-Fi films. He portrayed "TV Announcer" in "War of the Colossal Beast."
Nine Aboriginal elders referred to ancestral spirits to convert visual traditions into contemporary artworks. "No Boundaries Aboriginal Australian Contemporary Abstract Painting" runs through May 3, 2015. Nevada Art Museum I Art Newspaper + Art Net + Reno Gazette
Also at NAM, a site-specific installation inspired by geologic formations of Black Rock Desert including "painted form with a jagged line dividing it into two, alluding to the fence under construction which separates the United States and Mexico." Consuelo Jimenez Underwood Mothers -- The Art of Seeing
Drawings Sumi ink on paper I rair.org
Painter Sarah Gamble came out of The Roswell Residency in Roswell, New Mexico, with "on to depictions of human-like entities which seemed encased in bondage or magical glitter. These eventually turned into portrait like weirdos. A new painting just posted on Instagram by the artist seems to take another turn for the bizarre. It encapsulates a very realistic style with a nod to nature’s primal instinct." Some of her works from her residency are in “Your Life Is Happening Now,” at Moore College Of Art and Design in Philadelphia until March 14, 2015. The works on paper "documents her day to day existence at Roswell." I Beautiful Decay
Artist Ed Ruscha left a fake rock somewhere in the Mojave desert. After a ten years French artist Pierre Bismuth is still looking for it. I The Guardian
“Artists should avoid uses of existing copyrighted material that do not generate new artistic meaning, being aware that a change of medium, without more, may not meet this standard" is the bottom line, according to the College Art Association release of “Code of Best Practices in Fair Use.” The guidelines also apply to scholars, instructors, curators, and editors whose work may involve using others’ artworks I Hyperallergic.
Lakwena Maciver's "Paradise" series on paper. Acrylic, 24kt gold leaf on museum archival acid free paper, 2014, 22in x 30in
After a global search, London-based text-based muralist Lakwena Maciver was awarded a wall for Life is Beautiful. She returns to the west for a solo show in Los Angeles, “I Remember Paradise,” on view at Papillion Art through March 15. The show had a solid review by Christopher Knight at LAT.
The aesthetic of portraiture is the point of departure to explores the representational power of photography from its origins in the nineteenth century to its digital forms in the present, so says the Palm Springs Museum. Personalties: Fantasy and Identity in Photography and New Media runs through May 3. Ai Weiwei's Circle of Animals/Zodiac Heads: Gold is a work about "freedom of imagination and the persistence of ideas." Through May 15. PLUS: It's Modernism Week in Palm Springs.
Ward 7D by Morag Myerscough via Design Boom
Clark County had a call for artists to paint a odd hallway in a building offering children's services. If an artist found this there may have been some inspiration in a proposal. The Royal London Children’s Hospital officially opened in March 2012, and since then worked with Vital Arts to liven up the walls, like the work by Designer Morag Myerscough using hand-painted words and patterns.this commission, a design inspired by 2008 visit to Delhi. I Design Boom
AzCentral on the "7 priciest of Tempe public art."
Violence has made the Tijuana tourist trade a dying industry and subject of one piece in Rosario Martínez and Roberto Vega exhibition of works from their Lapiztola exhibition, "Democracia Real Ya!," at Rich Mix in east London.
Tijuana developed on the back of such trade and, when the visitors noticed that some of the donkeys they’d posed with for photos were too pale to show up well on film, enterprising locals obliged them by painting their animals to resemble crisply photogenic zebras.
Chapter #7: "Daniel R. Small, Pending Cipher for the Open Present" in Las Cruces, NM
Billboard across the US, and desert, are getting notice. It's the Los Angeles Nomadic Division's "Manifest Destiny Billboard Project." Southern New Mexico are "stumbling upon a series of puzzling billboards along highways and fear they be warnings in hieroglyphics." writes the Las Cruces Sun-News. The artist-produced billboards are along Interstate 10 from Jacksonville, Fla. to Los Angeles I LAND and The Manifest Destiny Billboard Project
“…[M]y 50 years of art writing have often been motivated by a desire to escape the art world. I’m … pleased that the award is for art writing and not art criticism, a term I’ve always kind of disliked, since most of what I know about art I learned from artists, and artists from pretty diverse backgrounds, and ‘critic’ sounds awfully antagonistic. Art writing is an odd profession. I suspect many of us thought we were on our way somewhere else–journalism, poetry, or fiction in my case.” - Lucy Lippard, upon receiving The College Art Association’s Distinguished Lifetime Achievement Award for Writing on Art I ArtNews
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