103 Participants Selected for 2014 Whitney Biennial, To Take Place March 7–May 25, 2014

The 2014 edition of the Whitney Biennial—the country’s best known survey of the latest developments in American art—will take place March 7–May 25, 2014 and will be the last Biennial in the Whitney Museum of American Art’s building at 945 Madison Avenue at 75th Street before the Museum moves downtown to its new building in the spring of 2015. This is the 77th in the Museum’s ongoing series of Annuals and Biennials begun in 1932 by Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney.

2014 Whitney Biennial curators Anthony Elms, Stuart Comer, and Michelle Grabner. Photograph by Filip Wolak

2014 Whitney Biennial curators Anthony Elms, Stuart Comer, and Michelle Grabner. Photograph by Filip Wolak

The 2014 Biennial will take a bold new form with three curators from outside the Museum offering their unique perspectives on the state of contemporary art in the United States. The curators have selected 103 participants. While past Biennials have been organized collectively by multiple curators, for this edition each curator will oversee one floor of the exhibition. To curate the Biennial, the Museum selected Stuart Comer, Anthony Elms, and Michelle Grabner to represent a range of geographic vantages and curatorial methodologies. Whitney curators Elisabeth Sussman and Jay Sanders, who were responsible for the widely praised 2012 Biennial, are serving as advisors on the project.

Donna De Salvo, Chief Curator and Deputy Director for Programs at the Whitney, noted: “The 2014 Biennial brings together the findings of three curators with very distinct points of view. There is little overlap in the artists they have selected and yet there is common ground. This can be seen in their choice of artists working in interdisciplinary ways, artists working collectively, and artists from a variety of generations. Together, the 103 participants offer one of the broadest and most diverse takes on art in the United States that the Whitney has offered in many years.”

Stuart Comer (formerly Curator: Film at Tate Modern, London, now Chief Curator of Media and Performance Art at MoMA) commented that his section of the Biennial “acknowledges the complexity of contemporary art practice by including many types of cultural producers: editorial collectives, artist curators, activists, musicians, poets, dancers, filmmakers, painters, sculptors and photographers. These artists often work at the intersection of political movements and personal statements, addressing global shifts in vibrant and variable ways. A keen sense of history pervades their work, even as they are involved in forging new ways to consider identity, nationality, technology, community and genre. Many of them produce artworks that deviate and morph between forms and categories—they champion an art of multiplicity and flux.”

Anthony Elms (Associate Curator at the Institute of Contemporary Art in Philadelphia) began his curatorial process by trying to answer the question architect Marcel Breuer posed in his notes for the plans for the Whitney Museum on Madison Avenue: “What should a museum look like, a museum in Manhattan?” Elms’s answer for the 2014 Biennial is that “a museum in Manhattan should be filled with a multiplicity of voices and a sense of poetry. It should exhibit works of art from all creative disciplines and challenge the relationship between the past, the present, and histories yet to be written. Ultimately, each singular artistic statement should contain a palpable sense of the plural.”

Michelle Grabner (Professor in the Painting and Drawing Department at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, who also teaches at Yale, is an artist herself, and oversees two alternative art spaces in the Midwest) noted that her section of the 2014 Whitney Biennialfeatures artists who have come to the fore as figures of influence, both inside and outside the geographic and commercial centers of the art world. Some are independent-minded creators who feel their work is best served by maintaining a distance from these centers; some are teachers; others are ‘artist’s artists;’ some challenge art institutions. Many of these artists are object makers, embracing the traditional disciplines of craft, painting, and sculpture.” Continue reading

Jacob Zarbailov Launches JacobZ NYC Collection by Jacob Zarbailov in New York City

Images Photographed by Lev Radin

NEW YORK - NOVEMBER 19: Jacob Zarbailov (L) shows off collection JacobZNYC of jewelry by Jacob Zarbailov during presentation at Todd Home in West Village on November 19, 2013 in New York City (Photo Credit: Lev radin)

NEW YORK – NOVEMBER 19: Jacob Zarbailov (L) shows off collection JacobZNYC of jewelry by Jacob Zarbailov during presentation at Todd Home in West Village on November 19, 2013 in New York City (Photo Credit: Lev Radin)

Yesterday, Accessories and jewelry designer Jacob Zarbailov presented his new JacobZ NYC collection by Jacob Zarbailov at Todd Home in the West Village on November 19, 2013 in New York City. The brand was founded in Moscow 3 years ago by the artist and designer and has grown since then.

NEW YORK - NOVEMBER 19: Women bags JacobZNYC collection by Jacob Zarbailov on display during presentation at Todd Home in West Village on November 19, 2013 in New York City (Photo Credit: Lev Radin)

NEW YORK – NOVEMBER 19: Women bags JacobZNYC collection by Jacob Zarbailov on display during presentation at Todd Home in West Village on November 19, 2013 in New York City (Photo Credit: Lev Radin)

JacobZ NYC is inspired by ZEN gemstones and minerals from the Earth, also known as healing crystals. Ever since discovering them, Zarbailov has tuned into their energy and saw just how precious they are. They are used as a form of healing and as a tool to bring out certain spiritual qualities within ourselves, such as wisdom, luck, health, creativity and many more. Clearly these are gifts to be shared.

Stringing together enchanted pieces, he chooses only the highest quality of gemstones. Then, using Reiki and the Native American tradition of smudging, he cleans and charges the energy of each stone. Every finished piece offers a specific energy to support the wearer in their personal journeys.

Through his company, Zarbailov is supporting organizations which help people with Multiple Sclerosis. One of his closest friends and a great example of a person who has Multiple Sclerosis while giving motivation to others is the well known artist Katia Kull, who was invited to present some of her art during the event. There is little information about the prevention and symptoms of MS. We may never know who has it or how it occurs, but as zarbailov added, “we have to support people with Mulitple Sclerosis and show that artists care about people with Multiple Sclerosis and are able to support their well-being through art.”  20% of revenue will go to the Skladej Foundation.

2013 Snap-On Holiday Gift Guide: The Toy Catalog For Techies And DIY Homeowners

From innovative power tools and hand tools to the latest in tool storage, lighting solutions and shop and tech equipment, the 2013 SNAP-ON HOLIDAY GIFT GUIDE is this season’s toy catalog for techs. This 16-page gift guide also offers popular non-tool items like the world famous SNAP-ON® SOCKS and KNIT HATS to help keep Snap-on Nation warm during winter.

The Snap-on Holiday Gift Guide offers the ultimate collection of Snap-on tools and equipment just right for holidaySnap-on 12 LED Red Pocket Light giving,” said Rick Secor, director, PR and communications for Snap-on. “Featuring over a hundred great gift ideas, the guide includes special pricing on many items through Dec. 31. Order now, as holiday gift guide items will go fast.”

Some of the exciting gift ideas available in the 2013 Snap-on Holiday Gift Guide include:

This 12 LED high-output light (right) with front-facing surface mount diodes (SMD) produces 100 lumens on high and 65 lumens on medium. Using three AAA alkaline batteries, it provides seven hours runtime on high or 12 hours on medium. Featuring a robust rubber boot that protects the light from drop hazards, this Snap-on light is compact enough to take anywhere and the strong, rare earth magnet on the back of the clip attaches to ferrous surfaces. Also available in green (ECFONELITEG) and orange (ECFONELITEO).

Featuring the Flank Drive® Plus wrenching system, these top quality wrenches provide up to 62 percent more turning power, allowing more torque while reducing fastener wear. A durable finish provides corrosion resistance, while the high strength alloy steel offers greater wrench strength and longer tool life. The 7.5 degree offset broaching allows work in restricted areas and the 15-degree offset orientation helps fight clearance problems.

With the most advanced features of any professional infrared gun, the Snap-on CTG761 has the widest temperature range on the market from -58 to 1,832 degrees Fahrenheit. The ergonomic design of the CTG761 grip is equally comfortable for right and left-handed users and a single-button trigger makes it effortless to control. Powered by a 14.4V MicroLithium battery and charger, it is also interchangeable with the new Snap-on 7.2 Volt cordless tools, eliminating the need for extra chargers and back-up batteries.

With 70 ft. lbs. of torque output, this cordless impact has variable speed with a digital toggle style trigger for precise control. A built-in brake stops the anvil from throwing sockets and fasteners and twin beam headlights illuminate work areas. It also has a quick 30-minute battery charge for less down time.

Customers can request a copy of the 2013 Snap-on Holiday Gift Guide by contacting their participating Snap-on franchisee or representative or by viewing it online at www.snapon.com.

World Premiere For The Compact SUV From Porsche: The Macan

Porsche is expanding its range to include a whole new class of vehicle. The Macan is the first Porsche model to break into the compact SUV segment and is poised to set new standards in the field of driving dynamics and enjoyment – on both paved streets uneven terrain. The Macan combines the typical handling characteristics that Porsche has represented right from the outset: maximum acceleration and braking values, vast engine power, extreme agility and optimum steering precision. What’s more, all of these features are teamed with a high level of comfort and everyday suitability. The sporty DNA of the Macan, as with all Porsche vehicles, is also immediately recognizable in the design.

The Sports Utility Vehicle is unrivalled in its flat and broad profile on the road. The wraparound bonnet and gently sloping roof line accentuate the overall impression of sporty elegance and powerful dynamics. Many of the design elements have been taken from other Porsche sportscars and enhanced for the Macan, making it clear to see from the very first glance that the Porsche Macan heralds the first sportscar in the compact SUV segment. The Macan is “Made in Germany”, produced at the Leipzig plant. Porsche has invested 500 million euro in the plant and has established an entire production line there. The line is set up to produce around 50,000 vehicles per year – all manufactured with the utmost precision and to the highest level of quality. Just what you would expect from Porsche.

Porsche Macan Turbo

Porsche Macan Turbo

Three models comprise the Macan product range at market launch. The Macan S is equipped with a 3.0-litre V6 biturbo engine delivering 340 bhp (250 kW) and also features an active all-wheel drive with an electronically controlled, map-controlled multi-plate clutch. This all-wheel drive is fitted on all Macan models. A seven-speed double-clutch transmission transfers power as required and almost without any interruption in tractive force, enabling the vehicle to accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h in 5.4 seconds (or 5.2 seconds with the optional Sport Chrono package fitted). The vehicle reaches a top speed of 254 km/h, and its NEDC*) fuel consumption figures are between 9.0 and 8.7 litres/100 km, which corresponds to a CO2 emissions level of between 212 and 204 g/km.

The Macan S Diesel is the economical long-distance runner of the three Macan models. Its 3.0-litre V6 turbo diesel engine achieves NEDC*) fuel consumption figures of between just 6.3 and 6.1 litres/100 km, which corresponds to a CO2 value of between 164 and 159 g/km. Nevertheless, the Macan S Diesel accelerates from 0 to 100 km in just 6.3 seconds (or 6.1 seconds with the Sport Chrono package fitted) thanks to its 258-bhp (190-kW) engine, and achieves a top speed of 230 km/h.

As the top model in the Macan model line, the Macan Turbo is set to be the most powerful vehicle in the compact SUV segment. The 3.6-litre V6 biturbo engine, which is being used in a Porsche model for the very first time, achieves an unrivalled 400 bhp (294 kW) and catapults the vehicle from 0 to 100 km/h in 4.8 seconds. With the Sport Chrono package fitted, it is even possible to achieve such a speed in 4.6 seconds. Although the top speed is 266 km/h, the Macan Turbo delivers NEDC*) fuel consumption figures of between just 9.2 and 8.9 litres/100 km, which equates to a CO2 value of between 216 and 208 g/km.

Its name comes from the Indonesian word for tiger. And the Macan really does live up to its name: powerful and ready to pounce at any time, yet light-footed and tenacious on off-road terrain. The latest stage of evolution of the all-wheel drive – known as Porsche Traction Management (PTM) – has produced one of the world’s most powerful drive systems. In launching the Macan, Porsche now offers sporty all-wheel-drive vehicles across an unprecedented range.

A glance at the performance specifications reveals that the Macan has been designed with agility in mind. Further unmistakable hallmarks of the vehicle include its proportions, de sign and the mixed tires on large wheels. The

Porsche Cars North America, Inc. Logo.  (PRNewsFoto/Porsche Cars North America, Inc.)

Porsche Cars North America, Inc. Logo. (PRNewsFoto/Porsche Cars North America, Inc.)

engines, drive systems and seven-speed Porsche Doppelkupplung (PDK) bring the vehicle’s characteristics to bear in dynamic and efficient fashion both on and off road, making for a true Porsche driving experience. The driver and passenger seats feature the low position typical of sportscars.

The range of equipment fitted on the Macan as standard is extensive, and includes the all-wheel drive, PDK, multi-function sport steering wheel with shift paddles, large wheels, high-performance audio system and an electrically operated tailgate. The list of optional special equipment offers further highlights, such as the air suspension system, which the Macan features as the only vehicle in its segment. There is also the Porsche Torque Vectoring Plus (PTV Plus) system, which has been specially tailored to the Macan. This system distributes varying levels of drive torque to the rear wheels and works in conjunction with an electronically controlled rear-axle differential lock. The list of Porsche options includes the much sought-after dynamic high beam forming part of the Porsche Dynamic Light System Plus (PDLS Plus), which continuously adjusts the headlight level in keeping with the traffic ahead and any oncoming traffic. Continue reading

Flexjet and Abercrombie & Kent Present “Passport to the World” as This Year’s Ultimate Holiday Gift

For those who want to give their loved ones the world, this year’s ultimate holiday offering from Flexjet (www.flexjet.com) operated by U.S. air carrier Jet Solutions and handcrafted by Abercrombie & Kent (www.abercrombiekent.com) is unmatched.

Passport to the World is a completely private jet experience circling the globe. From the Forbidden City to the Taj Majal, travelers will have exclusive access to hidden wonders for an once-in-a-lifetime journey of global discovery. This 14-day Passport to the World experience begins at $1.5 million. This includes $750,000 for land arrangements from Abercrombie & Kent for up to eight people, and a Flexjet 25 jet card for a Challenger 605 business jet, which starts from $750,000 for this itinerary.

This five-star Passport to the World experience for up to eight people includes a 14-day Abercrombie & Kent Card_Comp2journey, traveling in world-class comfort and style with one’s own private party aboard a Challenger 605 aircraft. The spacious business jet features larger, higher windows, along with cutting-edge avionics, state-of-the-art studio and video systems, global Wi-Fi and leather seats that transform into beds – allowing more space to comfortably unwind and relax.

An expert flight crew provided by Jet Solutions will remain with the group throughout the journey, learning each traveler’s on-board preferences and anticipating their needs.

Abercrombie & Kent will assist with expedited clearance through immigration and customs wherever possible; to maximize time spent enjoying each destination. Orchestrating each stop of the journey is an Abercrombie & Kent guide chosen from the ranks of its international coterie of professionals, who oversees everything from start to finish, relying on a lifetime’s worth of knowledge to reveal sights only locals know.

This journey also includes accommodations at the best landmark hotels reflecting the history and heritage of each extraordinary location, paired with incredible dining experiences at some of the world’s best restaurants, as detailed in the program highlights below.

Osaka/Kyoto, Japan (two nights) – Following a quick stop in Anchorage to refuel, the group lands in Osaka and continues to Kyoto, home of the famed Toji Temple, which was built in the year 826 and at 187 feet stands as the tallest pagoda in Japan. Travelers enjoy exclusive access to Toji’s Five Storied Pagoda as well as the emperor’s private retreat, both of which are closed to the public. No trip to Kyoto would be complete without a visit to Arashiyama Kitcho, often described as one of the best Japanese restaurants in the world with food “almost too beautiful to eat,” as distinguished by its three Michelin stars. Travelers savor this feast accompanied by geisha dancing, music and games. Following an afternoon Japanese Tea Ceremony, travelers return to the Ritz-Carlton Osaka, located in the prestigious business and shopping district of Nishi-Umeda.

Beijing, China (three nights) – From hutongs, narrow alleyways that date back to the Ming period and earlier, to the “Birds Nest” and “Water Cube,” the two stunning architectural highlights from the 2008 Olympics, travelers encounter 3,000 years of history firsthand in Beijing. Travelers also visit the Temple of Heaven, one of the great monuments built during the reign of the Ming emperors, where a resident master gives a special lesson in Tai Chi beneath the grandeur of the magnificent temple. Visit the Joyongguan section of the Great Wall, one of the vast structure’s most scenic stretches, for a Champagne toast and white-cloth picnic lunch atop the wall itself. Travelers spend their nights at The Peninsula Beijing – a graceful melding of the grandeur of the past and the luxury of the present ideally situated near the city’s historic heart, the Forbidden City and Tiananmen Square.

Hong Kong, China (two nights) – Guests bid farewell to Beijing as they travel to Hong Kong, the dazzling jewel of the Far East. Travelers board a privately chartered Peak Tram car – Hong Kong’s oldest means of public transport – for a trip to the top of Victoria Peak, where cooling breezes, picturesque vistas and verdant foliage greet them, followed by a sunset cruise around Hong Kong’s famed Victoria Harbor. At Man Mo Temple, the most revered Daoist temple in the territory, guests have the opportunity to draw a joss stick and have their fortune told by the temple priest. An authentic dim sum lunch at Lung King Heen, Hong Kong’s only three-star Michelin restaurant is followed by a restorative session in Zu Di An Muo, traditional Chinese reflexology used to treat any body ailment. Travelers stay at The Peninsula Hong Kong, one of the world’s legendary grand hotels born in the glamorous 1920s.

Agra, India (two nights) – Travelers arrive in Agra to the palatial Oberoi Amarvilas hotel, where they are welcomed with showers of rose petals and given a red-powdered bindi on their forehead as a mark of respect. Travelers visit the Taj Mahal in both the morning and the evening, seeing for themselves the unforgettable way in which the monument seems to change hues with the colors of the day. A private Mughal-themed dinner with Kathak dancers caps an incredible visit to India.

Istanbul, Turkey (two nights) – Istanbul embodies the meeting of the East and West, and is the only city that was an imperial capital for 1,700 years. Visitors enjoy private openings of the Hagia Sophia, one of the most extraordinary creations in the history of architecture; the Topkapi Palace Complex, the center of Ottoman government from which the Turks ruled most of Europe and the Middle East; and the Chora Church, known to be the richest repository of Byzantine interior wall decorations. Travelers dine with the owner of a stunning 18th-century wooden mansion of an Ottoman royal, and witness a demonstration of Whirling Dervishes. Accommodations are at the Ciragan Palace Hotel Kempinski Istanbul, which combines the architectural grandeur of a palace on the Bosphorus with the comforts of a modern, deluxe hotel. Continue reading

2013 Holiday Gift Guide: Glow Pets Light Up The Toy Aisle This Holiday Season

New from the maker of Pillow Pets and Dream Lites, Glow Pets are the amazing light-up pets that also transform into an extra comfortable and soft pillow. Poised to be a stand-out toy this holiday season, these cuddly critters are the perfect gift for little ones, but parents will love them, too. Whether kids have difficulty settling down or they just need a familiar companion to ensure a good night’s sleep, Glow Pets make bedtime a breeze and will help little ones drift off to dreamland long after the excitement of the holidays is gone.

Aside from being a plush, Glow Pets are ideal for bedtime, especially around the holidays when schedules are disrupted and wreak havoc on nighttime routines,” said Jason Biziak, Vice President, Ontel Products Corporation. “And, Glow Pets also make great travel companions, not only during the season but throughout the entire year.”

Children will find Glow Pets hard to part with as these super-soft cuddly companions are perfect for playtime, story time or anytime. When the button on a pet’s paw is pressed, the pet emits a soft light to help ease children to sleep. Each pet contains a special LED light that creates a glow without producing heat, and a built-in timer that automatically shuts off after 20 minutes. Children can simply secure the pet’s tummy with the attached strap to create a plush animal, and pull the strap to release the pet into pillow form.

Every child has a favorite bedtime toy, but what’s wonderful about Glow Pets is they are so much more than just another stuffed animal,” said Laurie Schacht, Toy Insider Mom. “Glow Pets serve multiple functions – as a nightlight, pillow and friend making them the perfect addition to a child’s bedroom, particularly for those kids who have trouble sleeping.”

Glow Pets are recommended for ages 3 and up. MSRP: $29.99. Choose from 10 pets including Beaming Bear, Glow Snail, Dazzling Zebra, Glow Turtle, Sparkling Unicorn, Glow Lightning Bug, Glow Monkey, Brilliant Pup, Flashy Penguin and Shimmering Seal. Available now at www.glowpets.com and major retailers nationwide.

The Christmas Countdown is on: Lands‘ End Unveils the Official Gift Collection of Christmas

Lands’ End for When . . . There Are Only 26 Days Between Thanksgiving and Christmas

With only a few weeks to get ready, time-crunched families will be extra busy celebrating the season, preparing their homes and finding the perfect gifts. To make it easier, Lands’ End announced it has unveiled the “Official Gift Collection of Christmas” via its catalogs, at www.landsend.com/gifts and at Lands’ End Shops at Sears®. Holiday shoppers can give with confidence — the collection features gifts carefully curated by price for her, him, boys, girls, baby, home and even the dog, making Lands’ End a one-stop holiday shopping destination.

With more than 275 choices for gifts under $25 and 300 choices for gifts between $25-$50 and more, www.landsend.com/gifts lets holiday shoppers easily find something special to fit their budget. In addition, seven featured shops offer gifts organized by themes – from stocking stuffers to gifts that sparkle and shine.

We know it’s going to be an extra busy shopping season,” said Michele Donnan Martin, chief merchandising and design officer, Lands’ End. “We also know that nobody wants to give the gift that gets re-gifted.  Whether shoppers call, visit us online or in store, we’re prepared to help husbands and wives, aunts and uncles, parents and grandparents – everyone – find the perfect gift.

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“We’ve scrutinized our gift list, making sure we recommend gifts we’d love to give our friends and family,” Donnan Martin said. “Look for everything from down vests and chic reversible down jackets to family sleepwear, cozy throws and luxurious yet affordable cashmere sweaters for the ultimate luxe gift.”

There’s something special about a gift with the recipient’s name on it. Whether monogrammed, embroidered, heat stamped or engraved, Lands’ End can make just about any item it sells personal.  The “Personalized Gifts” shop features items that can easily be monogrammed, for just $6 an item, in about two or three days. Select from 12 monogram styles and nearly 30 thread colors available to make every gift one of a kind and special. From fine Cashmere Sweaters to gloves and wallets, it’s quite impressive to discover what can take a stitch, stamp or engraving.

Lands’ End has always been a brand founded in beautiful color and special details and this season – whether for gift giving, dressing or decorating – their designers have gone all out.  “We have the perfect pairings for the holiday party and under the tree,” added Martin, “including beautifully embellished occasion cardigans and dresses, classic and colorful cashmere-lined sheepskin gloves with EZ Touch(TM) smartphone technology, and whimsical novelty sweaters packed with personality.”

Where the Holidays Come #Together

From Thanksgiving dinner to office parties and Christmas brunch, it’s the time of the year when everyone comes #Together. In recognition of these special relationships, Lands’ End is celebrating with the hashtag, “#Together.” Not only is it a play on social media but also how familial relationships are woven into the fabric of who we are as individuals, as well as a nod to the Lands’ End holiday family plaid used throughout all collections this year.

Just in time for the holidays, Lands’ End is offering free shipping to all customers on purchases over $50 as part of its standard customer offerings. Customers in the United States will also have the option to upgrade to 2-day UPS shipping for only $5, a competitive offering in the marketplace.

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Lands’ End customer care specialists are available 24 hours a day, 364 days a year and are all based in Wisconsin.  Lands’ End also makes in-person returns easy by allowing customers to return online purchases and gifts free of charge at any Sears store nationwide, or by simply using the Easy Return shipping label on the packaging for a low, flat fee.

This holiday season especially, Lands’ End customers are able to check off their shopping list with ease. Customers in the continental U.S. can order by Thursday, December 19, for delivery of in-stock items at standard shipping and handling for delivery by Christmas.  Procrastinators can order in-stock items by Sunday, December 22, and have them delivered in time for Christmas for a $15 upgrade charge. Additionally, monogrammed items only add an additional 2-3 days to the delivery time and start at just $6; and all pants are hemmed free of charge to a customer’s desired length. In-stock monogrammed or hemmed items will make tree time when ordered by Wednesday, December 18, with standard shipping.