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Tag Archives: Zarah Ackerman

I was asked to participate in a painting competition being organized by Paul Butler as his first project as Artist in Residence at the AGO in Toronto. Although I do not identify myself as a painter, I liked the idea that the competition would be in front of a live audience for Nuit Blanche. In effect, the live competition would be forcing the painters to become performers and for me the opposite would be true – a performance artist turned painter. With this in mind, I created a character so that I could focus on the performance aspect of the competition with more intensity.

The Painting Shaman - energy focusing mandala in process - duration 3.5 hours

The Painting Shaman implores a non-traditional hybrid of ecstatic techniques of shamanic journeying and other aspects of contemporary psychological, religious and spirituality. Rather than attempting to continue a pre-existing tradition, the Painting Shaman focuses on utilizing the ancient techniques of the shaman in ways appropriate to a modern audience. During the Other Painting Competition the Shaman will be focusing on painters of the past and contacting them directly through the spiritus mundi, calling on them to paint through her.

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 This is a great video produced for the Detroit News by Donna Terek.

1st collector for Fly by Night Artists decide to stay in Detroit
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photo by Donna Terek

Detroit is the kind of city that you really need to sink your teeth into. You can’t just figure it out in a drive by or weekend get-away you need some time to get to know the local haunts and the best scavenge piles. Me and my peeps have got a bunch of press lately… we made the cover of the Detroit Metro Times with a huge story by Michael Jackman and Donna Terek has featured us in her column Donna’s Detroit for the Detroit News.

photo by Donna Terek

Juxtapose magazine also did a little follow-up about the “Treasure Nest” on the blog which you can check out here and all of the photos were taken by Faythe Levine: gallerist, blogger, filmmaker, photographer, author of Hand Made Nation, and expert on all things DIY. Also check out Fecal Face Dot COM To see more of Faythe’s photos and Monica Canilao’s solo show at the SkyHigh gallery in Milwaukee and our Detroit Treasure Nest!!

photo by Faythe Levine
So like I have said before if you are interested in visiting and or helping out on this big project please send me a comment – Detroit will love you too

Where there is death there must be life….. maybe a rebirth.

I had heard a lot of talk recently about the dirt cheep properties located in and around Detroit and started seriously entertaining the idea of what life would be like living there. When I found out that friends Monica Canilao, Harrison, Ben Wolf, and Swoon  had been invited to do a project with Power House Productions and Juxtapose magazine, it was the perfect opportunity to get down there and check it out for myself. $100 House ABC News

The photos of the remnants of abandoned buildings of Detroit city remind me of the desolate scapes of Chernobyl, beautiful decay and silence. Detroit seen here through the eyes of french photographers Yves Marchand and Romain Meffre who will be publishing this and other images in their upcoming book entitled “The Ruins of Detroit” (December 2010)


Pictured above is the blue house which has now been named “The Treasure Nest” in a certain stage of progress. So free and magical, an almost utopic idea come to fruition, creating a living breathing artwork, social sculpture. I’m so excited to be a part of building this project, this house, this neighborhood, this city….. when I saw it my mind started racing and hasn’t stopped. Above photo taken by Todd Seelie. I’m sure you will be hearing more about this project as it develops and if you are interested in visiting Detroit and or joining this project please leave a comment!

Jeffery Dietch closes up shop in New York in preparation for his new career choice as Director of LA MOCA. Apparently, Dietch must close down his projects and desist his own private funding of artists projects. Such a move from the private to the public art sector has not been made by such a powerhouse mogul. What will happen to the artists he has been faithfully supporting? Will they be collected by the MOCA? Is that a conflict of interest for the institution? – well, only if Dietch would be making money off of the purchase and the MOCA has made it clear that this is unacceptable practice for the Director of a public institution. Time will only tell how this public/private relationship will turn out – this is for sure a fire that needs to be fanned and watched closely.


some opinions on the subject:

Los Angeles TIMES
Lee Rosenbaum’s Culture Grrl Blog
Vandalog – a street art and graff blog with lots of great photos of some of Dietch’s artists projects in motion.

Slivers Shivers and Snake Skin – a happening – Submissions!!!!

this is an event that I am putting together that will be taking place on April 16/17th 2010. Im chillin in Ontario right now but I thought it would be fun to plan a huge event while I am stuck here in the snow.

The theme of the show is suggested in the title which is better explained by ‘getting under your skin’ – something that makes you feel – affects – irks you. The title explains the theme in three different ways…
slivers – something that intrudes upon you physically that is not easy to remove.
shivers – a bodily reaction to your environment.
snake skin – a physical presence, visual, texture, relating to death, slithers, fear

As I have also suggested in the title its going to be a wild happening. These type of events involve the participation of the audience which could be as simple as making them dance or requiring them to move something physical, engaging in verbal confrontation, making them throw up, ears bleed, whatever.

At the moment I am looking at Chapel Arts in Vancouver Canada, as a venue since it has multiple rooms and levels and could easily have many different performances going on at the same time. Sensory overload!
Since this venue is so large I am also looking to fill some of the space with art that is more static – drawing, painting, sculpture – as long as it fits within the theme. There is also a stage and sound system so I want lots of noise!!!

Please email your submissions to:
zarahackerman@gmail.com

collaborations are welcomed and encouraged – suggest this to friends if you think they would fit. Sorry for any out of towners (not in Vancouver) but I cannot provide transportation or shipping costs since I’m working with a very slim budget.

Soooo……email me with a brief idea of what you would like to submit to the show – could be new or old work….and we will start up a conversation. Look fwd to hearing from you.

Deadline Extended to March 22!!! – but sooner is better 😉
zarahackerman@gmail.com

Exposition of the Ukrainian Pavilion at 53rd Venice Biennial
The Ukrainian pavilion was the one I kept talking about this summer when I was in Venice. Anyone who asked me which pavilion they shouldn’t miss Ukraine was my answer. It really was able to pull you into an environment of whimsy and magic – I was describing it as a surrealist house of horrors.
Ukraine is also home to my favorite billionaire! Victor Pinchuk #246 on Forbes list of Billionaires

Victor Pinchuk (left) pictured here with wife Elena and artist Damien Hirst


This is the man behind the biggest and soon to be most important art prize of this century. With a winning purse of $100,000 and secondary prizes of $20,000 shortlisted artists will be asked to participate in an exhibition at the PinchukArtCentre in Kiev. As if that wasn’t good enough the most interesting and possibly most important part of the prize is that the winner will be mentored by some of Pinchuk’s favorite artists Damien Hirst, Jeff Koons, Andreas Gursky, and Takashi Murakami.
You can watch a short video of the mentoring artists talking about their involvement with the prize on the new website www.futuregenerationartprize.org
You can also check out the other great things he is doing through his foundation pinchukfund.org

Applications will be accepted from artists under 35 starting Jan 18 – April 18 2010 through the art prize website www.futuregenerationartprize.org so get it together and apply!

I was on tour with some Black Labels in Miami. The Cast: Doyle – artist and builder extraordinaire and the hugest member of Black Label bc. Mike Jirish – the meanest mf piece of trailer trash i ever met and member of Black Label Reno. Ian – an artist and curator who certainly knows how to handle it! We got some good hollas – a few “Brooklyn!”‘s and just as many “Zarah!”s


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more about "Tall bikes tour South Beach", posted with vodpod

Miami is full of New Yorkers in Art Fair season. Yay it’s December and I’m sitting on the beach networking! This is just one of the New York characters that I met while chillin on the beach – Gary Cullen is a painter and performance artist. You can check out his work at www.djmayonnaisehands.com or at www.garycullen.org – I Heart Gary!

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