Constable: The Making of a Master at the Victoria and Albert Museum

London’s Victoria and Albert Museum‘s major autumn exhibition will re-examine the work of John Constable (1776-1837),Britain’s best-loved artist. It will explore his sources, techniques and legacy and reveal the hidden stories behind the creation of some of his most well-known paintings. The exhibition will also include a previously unrecorded oil sketch discovered in the V&A’s permanent collection, concealed beneath a lining canvas on the reverse of Branch Hill Pond: Hampstead (c.1821-22) and a documentary produced by Tern TV and presented by Alastair Sooke will be broadcast on BBC4 to coincide with the opening of the V&A exhibition.

Self-portrait by John Constable, Pencil and black chalk heightened with white and red chalk,   Artist: John Constable  Date: c.1799-1804   Credit line: © National Portrait Gallery, London  Special terms: Constable: The Making of a Master

Self-portrait by John Constable, Pencil and black chalk heightened with white and red chalk,
Artist: John Constable
Date: c.1799-1804
Credit line: © National Portrait Gallery, London
Special terms: Constable: The Making of a Master

Constable: The Making of a Master (curated by Mark Evans, Senior Paintings Curator at the V&A and view 20 September 2014 to 11 January 2015will juxtapose Constable’s work for the first time with the art of 17th-century masters of classical landscape such as Ruisdael, Rubens and Claude, whose compositional ideas and formal values Constable revered. On display will be such celebrated works as The Hay Wain (1821), The Cornfield (1826) and Salisbury Cathedral from the Meadows(1831), together with oil sketches Constable painted outdoors directly from nature, which are unequalled at capturing transient effects of light and atmosphere. The exhibition will bring together over 150 works of art including oil sketches, drawings, watercolours and engravings.

The Hay Wain,  Oil on canvas,  John Constable, 1821, © The National Gallery, London 2014

The Hay Wain, Oil on canvas, John Constable, 1821, © The National Gallery, London 2014

Martin Roth, V&A Director, said: “The V&A has been one of the leading centres for Constable research since the 19th century, following a significant gift of paintings, oil sketches and drawings from Constable’s daughter Isabel in 1888. This exhibition refreshes our understanding of his work and creative influence. It shows that Constable’s art, so well-lovedand familiar to many of us, still delivers surprises.

The Three Trees, by Rembrandt, Etching, Rembrandt, 1643, Victoria and Albert Museum, London

The Three Trees, by Rembrandt, Etching, Rembrandt, 1643, Victoria and Albert Museum, London

Born in East Bergholt, Suffolk on 11 June 1776, John Constable was the second son of a gentleman farmer and mill owner. Whilst working in the family business he became intimately familiar with the countryside around the River Stour and sketched observations of nature and the scenery and motifs of the Suffolk countryside. Given permission by his father to pursue art, he travelled to London in 1799 where he studied at the Royal Academy of Arts. He was schooled in the old masters, meticulously copying their work and reflecting on their compositions in his individual style. On display will be paintings including Moonlight Landscape (1635-1640) by Rubens and Landscape with a Pool (1746-7) by Gainsborough, which inspired Constable’s early practice.

Salisbury Cathedral from the Bishop's Ground, Oil on canvas, John Constable, 1823, Victoria and Albert Museum, London

Salisbury Cathedral from the Bishop’s Ground, Oil on canvas, John Constable, 1823, Victoria and Albert Museum, London

Constable made a number of close copies of the old masters which he referred to as a “facsimile…a more lasting remembrance.” Paintings including Claude’s Landscape with a Goatherd and Goats (c.1636-7) and Ruisdael’s Windmills near Haarlem (c.1650-52), as well as etchings and drawings by Herman van Swanevelt and Alexander Cozens, will be displayed alongside Constable’s own direct copies, many of which will be brought together for the first time since they were produced almost 200 years ago. Constable also owned an extensive art collection that included 5000 etchings principally by 17th-century Dutch, Flemish and French landscape painters, which became a vital resource for his own image making. Continue reading


Forty-one students from 23 U.S. colleges and universities as well as 10 students from foreign universities have been selected as finalists in the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ 41st Student Academy Awards competition.

The Academy established the Student Academy Awards in 1972 to support and encourage excellence in filmmaking at the collegiate level.  Past Student Academy Award® winners have gone on to receive 46 Oscar® nominations and have won or shared eight awards.  They include John Lasseter, Pete Docter, Robert Zemeckis, Trey Parker and Spike Lee.

The finalists are (listed alphabetically by film title):

“Dreamers,” Joseph Dwyer, Boston University
“Entropic Apogee,” Bill Manolios, Art Institute of California – San Francisco
“Jaspa’ Jenkins,” Robert Carnilius, Columbia College Chicago
“Oscillate,” Daniel Sierra, School of Visual Arts, New York
“Passer Passer,” Louis Morton, University of Southern California
“Person,” Drew Brown and Ramona Ramdeen, The Art Institute of Jacksonville, Florida
“The Private Life of Fenfen,” Leslie Tai, Stanford University
“Staircases,” Steinar Bergoy Nedrebo, School of Visual Arts, New York

“Baxter,” Ty Coyle, Savannah College of Art and Design, Georgia
“Goodnight Boon,” Jeremy Jensen, New York University
“Higher Sky,” Teng Cheng, University of Southern California
“Marcel,” Eric Cunha and Seung Sung, School of Visual Arts, New York
“Owned,” Daniel Clark and Wesley Tippetts, Brigham Young University, Utah

“Roadkill Redemption,” Karl Hadrika, Ringling College of Art and Design, Florida
“Two Ghosts,” Amy Lee Ketchum, University of Southern California
“Umbra,” Pedro Jesus Atienzar Godoy, Pratt Institute, New York
“Yamashita,” Hayley Foster, Loyola Marymount University, California

“The Apothecary,” Helen Hood Scheer, Stanford University
“Eth“no”representation,” Ryan Metzler and Scott Kulicke, Occidental College, California
“Heel’d,” Thomas Smith and McKenna Hinkle, Villanova University, Pennsylvania
“Light Mind,” Jie Yi, School of Visual Arts, New York
“My Sister Sarah,” Elizabeth Chatelain, University of Texas at Austin
“One Child,” Zijian Mu, New York University
“Punches & Pedicures,” Ashley Brandon and Dennis Höhne, Wright State University, Ohio
“Scattered,” Lindsay Lindenbaum, School of Visual Arts, New York
“White Earth,” J. Christian Jensen, Stanford University

“AM800,” James Roe, University of New Orleans
“Above the Sea,” Keola Racela, Columbia University, New York
“Door God,” Yulin Liu, New York University
“Interstate,” Camille Stochitch, American Film Institute, California
“Istifa (Resignation),” Rahat Mahajan, Art Center College of Design, California
“So You’ve Grown Attached,” Kate Tsang, New York University
“Sweepstakes,” Mark Tumas, Temple University, Pennsylvania
“Way in Rye,” Goran Stankovic, American Film Institute, California
“What Remains,” Julie Koegl, University of North Carolina School of the Arts

Foreign Film
“Border Patrol,” Peter Baumann, The Northern Film School, United Kingdom
“Intruder,” Geun Buem Park, Korean Academy of Film Arts, South Korea
“Kam,” Katarina Morano, University of Ljubljana – Academy of Theatre, Radio, Film and Television, Slovenia
“Nocebo,” Lennart Ruff, University of Television and Film Munich, Germany
“North,” Philip Sheerin, National Film and Television School, United Kingdom
“Paris on the Water,” Hadas Ayalon, Tel Aviv University, Israel
“Sacred Defense,” Nima Mohaghegh, Netherlands Film Academy
“Souffle Court,” Johann Dulat, ENS Louis-Lumière – The National Film, Photography & Sound Engineering School, France
“The Oasis,” Carl Marott, The National Film School of Denmark
“Wo Wir Sind,” Ilker Çatak, Hamburg Media School, Germany

To reach this stage, U.S. students competed in one of three regional competitions.  Each region is permitted to send to the Academy up to three finalists in each of the four categories.  The Student Academy Awards Nominating Committee screened and voted on the finalists in the Foreign Film category.

Academy members will now vote to determine up to three winning films in each category. The winners, but not their medal placements, will be announced later this month.  The winning students will be brought to Los Angeles for a week of industry activities and social events that will culminate in the awards ceremony on Saturday, June 7, at 6 p.m., at the DGA Theater in Hollywood, at which time the gold, silver and bronze medalists will be revealed.

The 41st Student Academy Awards ceremony on June 7 is free and open to the public, but advance tickets are required.  Tickets may be obtained online at or by mail.  Any remaining tickets will be made available at the door on the evening of the event. The DGA Theater is located at 7920 Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood.  For more information, call (310) 247-2677.



Skarstedt Gallery (New York – Upper East Side and London) announces the opening on Thursday, May 8, 2014, of a new space in New York in the heart of Chelsea, in addition to its two existing locations on New York’s Upper East Side and in London. The new gallery at 550 West 21st Street comprises over 6,000 square feet, occupying an entire freestanding building, designed by Selldorf Architects, a renowned New York-based firm with particular expertise in cultural and art-related projects. The additional gallery space enables Skarstedt to expand on its core program of museum-quality, historically researched exhibitions from modern and contemporary masters. The inaugural exhibition at the Chelsea gallery will present the pairing of Fire Paintings by Yves Klein and Oxidation Paintings by Andy Warhol, two major bodies of work by canonical 20th Century artists and fundamental to the history of abstraction, never before exhibited together. The exhibition will be on view from May 8 through June 21, 2014.

In the spring of 1961, access to a destructive testing laboratory in France, led Klein to one of his most innovative and, quite literally, explosive, bodies of work, the Fire Paintings. Using the bodies of young women as a mask (he had them covered in flame retardant) and transferring their nubile forms, Klein used a blowtorch to “burn” abstracted forms onto receiving paper. Klein’s technique bears striking similarity to the photographic technique of a heliograph, but Klein used flame, rather than light, to create shapes and forms. Intensely haunting and ethereal, the Fire Paintings exemplify what Klein referred to as “dangerous paintings,” that which jeopardized him in the process of his art making.

According to art historians, “the action of ‘burning’ a figure onto the paper receiver is innately photographic – not only is there strong similarities in the sense that an energy(light in the case of photography) used to darken or create a figure in the substrate – but the masking technique (like ‘dodging’ in the darkroom) functions in an identical fashion. The net result isn’t at all unlike a ‘heliograph’, or ‘light painting’.”

A decade later, Warhol did his own creative experiments with scientific process, but instead chose urine and metallic paints as the catalysts. For the Oxidations (1977-78), Warhol created brilliant, lavishly textured surfaces of gold and green, fashioning the “physical presence” he desired while satirizing the physical act of painting privileged by his forefathers, the Abstract Expressionists. This series marks an important point of departure for Warhol, being his first foray into abstraction, and disclosing his intrigue with the Abstract Expressionist painters who had dominated the New York art scene in the 1950s, during his early career.

We have an on-going commitment to mounting key historical exhibitions,” says Per Skarstedt, “and I’m delighted to open this new gallery space in Chelsea with an exhibition of incredible works by these quintessential modern masters.” Skarstedt continues, “This approach suits the collaborative way we have always worked with artists and their estates.”

The exhibition will be accompanied by a fully illustrated catalogue, with an essay by Cary Levine.


Four part monthly series features films selected by legendary New York drag artists, curated by filmmakers Ira Sachs and Adam Baran 

Queer/Art/Film and the IFC Center announced the launch of a special season of the long-running film series, with the programming of a drag-themed “SUMMER OF DRAG,” with Lypsinka, Barbara Herr, BUSHWIG, and Murray Hill.

Inspired by New York City’s rich history of drag artistry in all forms – as well as the popularity of another Monday night institution, “RuPaul’s Drag Race” — curators Ira Sachs and Adam Baran have invited four of the city’s most notable drag performers to be a part of this special season. Each guest will screen a film that has inspired them in their lives and work, followed by a Q&A with the audience, and an after party at Julius, New York’s oldest gay bar, a site which has its own important place in New York history.

The four presenters are: the legendary Lypsinka, famed for her innovative lip synch performances to classic Hollywood film quotes; Latina drag artist Barbara Herr, a veteran of drag clubs like Sally’s Hideaway, Escuelita, and The Monster, where she hosts the popular Monday night party Sabor Latino; the queens of Brooklyn’s BUSHWIG festival, including founders Simon Leahy (Babes Trust) and Matty Beats (Horrorchata) along with a gaggle of performers from the inspiring and exciting new Brooklyn drag scene; and finally, the hardest working man in show business, Mr. Murray Hill, downtown’s favorite drag king borscht belt comedian.

From the queens who used to populate Bowery bars, to the queens who led the clashes with police during the Stonewall riots, to the drag and trans performers so vital to New York’s underground culture today, drag has been one of the most important pieces of our collective LGBT history and struggle,” says Baran. “We hope that this series shines a light on how drag has been represented in films throughout the years,” Sachs adds, “and we are excited to honor our guests’ important position in the cultural and political landscape of New York City.

Each film in the series relates to themes of drag, performance, creativity, persecution, success, hardship and triumph. Lypsinka’s choice, the drag cult classic Outrageous! (1977 – dir. Richard Benner), is a pseudo biopic of the legendary Canadian drag performer Craig Russell, who wowed crowds all over the world with his impersonations of Mae West, Bette Davis, and Judy Garland, before battling his own demons during the early years of HIV/AIDS.

Barbara Herr’s selection is the classic Tennessee Williams adaptation Suddenly, Last Summer (1959 – dir. Joseph L. Mankiewicz), starring Elizabeth Taylor in a lurid tale which features violence against a homosexual character which, Barbara notes, “still alive and well in our society today in this country and all over the world.”

The BUSHWIG queens selected Hedwig and the Angry Inch (2001 – dir. John Cameron Mitchell, and newly revived on Broadway with Neil Patrick Harris in the title role) for its brilliant and groundbreaking exploration of both “performative gender expressions” and “the idea of multiple genders in one being.”

Murray Hill closes out the series with a look back at the pioneering drag ball documentary The Queen (1968 – dir. Frank Simon) which stars legendary drag queen Flawless Sabrina (still going strong today!), and features appearances by Andy Warhol, his early favorite drag queen Mario Montez, and Edie Segdwick. The film gave many, including Hill, the first glimpse of gay/drag life they’d ever seen.

Dir. Richard Brenner, USA, 1977, 96 min, digital projection.

“Summer of Drag” gets kicked off with this cult classic about a hairdresser whose schizophrenic roommate convinces him to turn his passion for imitating Hollywood starlets into a full-fledged career. Before long Robin (played by the brilliant Canadian drag superstar Craig Russell) is wowing crowds with his impressions of Judy Garland, Bette Davis, Mae West and more. Our guest host is the legendary drag superstar Lypsinka (aka John Epperson), who calls OUTRAGEOUS! “the best feature film about drag performance and what it means to have chosen such a weighted, fraught profession.” Come out and celebrate the beginning of a very glamorous summer!

Monday, May 12th, 8:00PM


Dir. Joseph L. Mankiewicz, USA, 1959, 114 min, 35mm print.


Cannibalism. Homosexuality. Lobotomy. Only Tennessee Williams could pull together this Gothic mix and write a film as moving and beautiful as this. Elizabeth Taylor stars as a young woman who, at the insistence of her wealthy aunt (Katherine Hepburn) is being evaluated to receive a lobotomy after witnessing the death of her cousin. For the legendary Latina drag queen Barbara Herr – who started out in Times Square’s Sally’s Hideaway before owning the stages of Escualita, The Monster, and Friend’s Tavern — the film’s depiction of violence against homosexuals “is still alive and well in our society today in this country and all over the world.”

Monday, June 9th, 7:30PM


Dir. John Cameron Mitchell, USA, 2011, 95 min, 35mm print.

20 years after Hedwig and the Angry Inch first appeared as a revue at the legendary rock n’ roll drag party Squeezebox, the creators of Brooklyn’s BUSHWIG festival are carrying the torch with their annual dragstravaganza, featuring the most exciting young queens in NYC. We’ll be joined by some of the girls and BUSHWIG founder Simon Leahy, who writes, “We grew up with Hedwig, and love it because it deals not only with performative gender expressions but also the idea of multiple genders in one being. It was the first film to bring these ideas to a mainstream audience.” Join us for this groundbreaking film, plus a special surprise or two.

Monday, July 7th, 8PM

Dir. Frank Simon, Canada, 1968, 68 min, digital projection.

Before there was “Drag Race,” there was The Queen. This seminal documentary about a 1967 NYC drag contest goes behind the scenes, recording the rehearsals, the conversations, and the jealousies that emerge in the lead up to the big competition. For drag king Murray Hill — “the hardest working middle-aged man in show business” — it was also “the first glimpse of gay/drag life that I’d ever seen.” Starring the legendary Flawless Sabrina, and including cameos by Andy Warhol, Edie Sedgwick and Mario Montez, we can’t think of a better way to end our “Summer of Drag” than with this perfectly preserved time capsule of the pre-Stonewall New York drag scene.

Monday, August 11th, 8PM

Screenings will take place at the IFC Center, 323 Sixth Avenue at West 3rd St. Adult tickets are $14. Membership packages are available starting at $50. For more information on the complete series, visit Queer/Art/Film at: