Table, Shadow

Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

from the Museum web site:


Costa Achillopoulo

Little is known about the designer of this table, which is both a functional piece of furniture and a fantastical Surrealist sculpture. The glass tabletop rests improbably atop small balls balanced on the tips of three delicately tapering fingers, generating a sensation of tension and unease. Disembodied hands and gloves are recurrent motifs in Surrealist art, with the left hand, in particular, symbolizing the irrational. The cloudlike element from which the hand emerges also suggests a transition from the conscious to the subconscious world.

Perfect Pie

Hales Gallery, 20th St and Eleventh Avenue, New York

Last weekend we went down to the Zwirner Galleries to see Hilton Als’ exhibition on James Baldwin, long a hero of mine for The Fire Next Time and Go Tell It on The Mountain. Watching old YouTube videos of him in debates or on talk shows is another good way to see his rhetorical brilliance displayed and enjoy watching his white interlocutors squirm. Unfortunately we went down on the last afternoon and the place was packed (with old white people) making it almost impossible to appreciate the exhibit. In particular it was hard to get to the tiny explanatory placards here and there to understand the context, so we abandoned it and went into a number of other Chelsea galleries.

I confess to a certain Philistinism when it comes to this kind of work (Richard Slee’s Perfect Pie at Hales Gallery).

Chihuly IV (final)

And after the greenhouse you emerge into the gardens where further works of glass art are integrated into the gardens. It’s all quite remarkable. After the gardens, of course, you can’t exit without passing through the gift shop where you can buy an amazing array of Chihuly “merch” as it’s been abbreviated these days, ranging to thousands of dollars for actual glass.

Click any image to see them all enlarged.