PERFORMA is the world’s preëminent festival of performance art, held in multiple New York City venues each year. This year’s program at WhiteBoxHarlem is one of the diverse and compelling of the whole lot.
Today marks the 200th anniversary of the birth of Herman Melville.
“Since their launch in 2006, BerkShares have become a point of pride for our region. These beautiful bills designed by John Isaacs also feature artwork by local artists on the reverse. As they pass from hand to hand, we are reminded that BerkShares act as a tool for community education and empowerment in the Berkshires, while celebrating our landscape, heroes and artists. Here's to Herman Melville and all our local heroes!” —Rachel Moriarty, Executive Director, BerkShares
Curator Lara Pan writes: Olga Titus draws from her Malaysian and Swiss background, combining it with clever references to social media and pop culture. In an idiosyncratic and thoroughly personal way, the artist romanticizes her cultural heritage through symbolical imagery. Her approach to video art promises to transport the viewer into her world and experience that “magic”moment, one that will be imprinted indelibly in the memory. (Promotional materials by JID.)
The 20th Anniversary FilmColumbia (October 18–27) promises to be a big one. For the fifth year in succession, John Isaacs Design has created the Festival branding, and all related promotional materials, including the wickedly sensuous Program Guide to be whipped out in a ten-day window by a one-man team. We’ll do it … we always do.
WhiteBox moved to Harlem at the beginning of 2019. JID created an entirely new logo to define this transition (as we did when WBX moved from Chelsea to the Lower East Side). Its new location with more space, a wider audience, and an expanded focus, still both locally and globally oriented, is represented in this new graphic iteration, and all the countless promotional materials to follow.
A major exhibition, curated by Kyoko Sato at WhiteBox, explores the intersection of art and fashion in the astonishingly innovative work of Hiroko Koshino. JID was responsible for branding the project and for all associated publicity, including a double-page spread in ArtForum (above). Until December 1.
The 2018 FilmColumbia festival presented some sixty films (plus live events) over eight days, meticulously assembled by Peter Biskind and Laurence Kardish, Senior Curator of film at the Museum of Modern Art. Last year’s festival studiously identified upcoming awards winners, and this year’s selection will undoubtedly do so too. In a small town (Chatham, New York), that’s no small miracle. And for the fourth year, JID prepared the annual branding and all related materials, including the 64-page program.
JID designed and built a custom WordPress-based website for this unique restored cinema in Chatham NY and its associated annual film festival, offering live trailers and a vast amount of easily accessible information. Highly automated posting and ticketing functions make it a cinch to update. crandelltheatre.org
White Anxieties is a mixed media, international group exhibition that takes the pulse of what haunts the conservative, American psyche. Branding by JID.
Peter Biskind’s latest, The Sky is Falling, is a highly provocative tour de force of cultural analysis. The New Press commissioned JID to create the jacket design, in which we featured a nightmarish LA landscape with the requisite apocalyptic typography.
Last seen on Broadway with Nicole Kidman in 1998, The Blue Room is David Hare’s loose adaptation of La Ronde – a series of vignettes that show how chance sexual encounters travel throughout class and power in society. JID created the publicity campaign for its presentation at WhiteBox.
Best-selling cultural critic and film historian, Peter Biskind, was editor-in-chief of American Film magazine from 1981 to 1986, and executive editor of Premiere magazine from 1986 to 1996. His writing has appeared in scores of national publications, including the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, Rolling Stone, The Nation, Newsweek, French Vanity Fair, the Washington Post, as well as film journals such as Sight and Sound and Film Quarterly. He is currently a contributing editor for American Vanity Fair and a staff writer for Esquire. He has published eight books, most of which have been translated into several languages. peterbiskind.com
Atsuki Settangeli was encouraged in his “Samurai Series” by Yoko Ono. Conspicuously, for Settangeli’s exhibition at WhiteBox and at the insistence of curator Kyoko Sato, in the ‘Me Too” moment, the artist has created his first paintings of female Samurai based on true legends.
Karen Halverson is a Columbia County-based landscape photographer whose work, focused on the American West though spanning continents, has been widely exhibited and is archived at the Beinecke Library at Yale University. JID employed a Squarespace template, substantially modified, to create this site, saving the client what would otherwise have been significant development and coding costs, and allowing her to update it herself.
This show looks like it will be intriguing. Zinaïda is a Ukrainian artist/videographer focused on feminist issues within a spiritual context. Her handsome website, zinaida.studio, is rich and evocative. We whipped out this publicity in ten minutes (it’s always last minute at WhiteBox).
As the world of print is increasingly digitized, the music business already fully so, and the movie business almost entirely (where that leaves the other performing arts, we’ll have to see), it’s Biliana K’s expectation—perhaps vision—that the visual arts will in due course, or are even soon to be subject to the same total dematerialization process. The work of Geneva-based, Bulgarian-born artist Biliana K Voden Aboutaam resides on the cusp of this revolution. Long an astute riffer on cultural transformation, her upcoming show at WhiteBox promises to address the trend provocatively (and fully in line with the gallery’s consistently off-kilter approach to curation).
Paul Harbutt is a Claverack-based British painter with remarkable virtuosity and an international reputation. His most recent project, executed over some three years, is a series of 50+ paintings that document the family history of a pioneer settler in Papua New Guinea, who went on to make a fortune. The entire work, embracing a vast range of styles and references, is collected in a soon-to-be-published large-format catalogue to which John Isaacs contributed two extended essays – one on the family, and one on Harbutt – as well as the book design.
FilmColumbia is an extraordinary annual weeklong event, in Chatham, New York in October, that magically succeeds in combining an astute sense of which soon-to-be-released films are likely to be award-winning and a selection of superb films from off the beaten track that are unlikely to get an airing anywhere else. Plus, it all happens in an exquisitely restored 600-seat village theatre, right out of the thirties. JID has developed a unique branding for the event each of the last three years, and now a fourth is in the works: programs, posters, publicity, badges, T-shirts … the whole works. This year, a modern riff on Russian Constructivist posters.
As WhiteBox marks its 20th anniversary, the Lower East Side alternative art space has scheduled a series of four exhibitions celebrating the spirit of international collaboration that has guided its programming for the past two decades. “EXODUS: Émigré Artists and the New York Vanguard” will showcase the contributions of artists from four countries/regions — Japan, China, Latin America, and the former Yugoslavia — who have immigrated to New York City in search of new artistic communities, freedom of expression, exchange of ideas, and greater visibility. The series will explore the role of these artists in changing the city’s cultural landscape and course of artistic expression. The first exhibition of the series, “A Colossal World: Japanese Artists and New York 1950s—Present”, curated by Kyoko Sato, opens on March 6. JID is responsible for graphics for the entire EXODUS series.
In his almost half-century-long career, the esteemed ink-wash artist Jizi (1942–2015) created a vast body of work during a dynamic period of Chinese history. Opening next week at WhiteBox on the Lower East Side, “Jizi: Journey of the Spirit,” a memorial retrospective curated in association with the artist’s son, includes a selection of large-scale paintings (and a monumentally-sized, rarely exhibited, scroll) that reveal Jizi’s decades-long search for a synthesis of styles, cultures, and ideas that honor tradition, reinforce the ideal of the universal oneness of all things, and embrace personal expression. In its abstraction, its expressiveness, and its spiritual dimension — packed with painterly instincts that recall Kline, Motherwell, and Dzubas — Jizi’s luminous work can claim particular resonance for New York audiences. JID designed the promotional materials, including a movie-size poster.