Monthly Archives: September 2010

Guggenheim announces shortlist for YouTube Play Biennial

The Guggenheim received over 23,000 submissions for their forthcoming YouTube Play Biennial.  100 of these entries have now been short-listed and you can view them on the Play Biennial channel on YouTube here.  From what Leg of Lamb has seen, the pickings are slim.  Unless of course you’re partial to musings on humanity that closely resemble ads for health insurance (above).  A  final 20 works selected by the jury will be exhibited at the Guggenheim, New York from October 22.

On the road with Lee Friedlander

Lee Friedlander – America By Car

Lee Friedlander, 'Plate 151, Denali Park', 2007, from the series 'America by Car'

American photographer Lee Friedlander loves a good road trip and has for many years photographed scenes in the rear view mirrors of various hire cars. The mirrors are clever framing devices that Freidlander uses to create oblique perspectives on the American landscape. 192 of these square format images taken during the past decade are currently on display at the Whitney Museum of Art.

Lee Friedlander: America By Car, Whitney Museum of Art, 945 Madison Avenue at 75th Street New York, until November 28, 2010

Looking Forward – Yvonne Todd at Ivan Anthony

Chartwell Online

New Zealand’s Chartwell Collection has launched a new-look website featuring easy access to images and information regarding recent acquisitions.  Visit them online here.

Hot Photo Friday – Danny Lyon

Danny Lyon, 'Crossing the Ohio River' from the series 'The Bikeriders', 1966


Polly Borland, 'Untitled III', 2010

Photographer Polly Borland made a name for herself  in the ’90s contributing to publications like The New Yorker, Dazed and Confused and The New York Times.   Best-known for her portraits, she has worked with the likes of Kingsley Amis, Nick Cave and the Queen.  However the sitters that appear in Smudge (her recent exhibition at Murray White Room, Melbourne) are virtually anonymous, their features obscured by an array of unusual DIY appendages.

Polly Borland, 'Untitled XV', 2010

The show contains over 30 photographs of modestly posed individuals.  Their humble, sometimes dunce-like posturing makes their get-ups all the more perverse.  Most sitters are stuffed into body stockings – often flesh coloured – that inhibit easy identification of gender.  Borland jams costumes full of balls that strain wart-like against the skin.   She crowns heads with cheap wigs through which sickly protusions (phallic pinocchio noses, tufts of hair, ruddy pink nostrils) emerge.  Contorted faces are disfigured by obscene smears of make-up.  The photographs are delightfully, sickeningly, wrong.

Polly Borland, 'Clown', tapestry, 2010

While the handiwork of the prison inmates who made them is admirable, the 5 tapestries that accompany the photographs don’t pack the same punch.  Leached of the rich colour found in her prints, they fall flat installed next to their glossy counterparts.  Had they been allowed their own space, one might have been more inclined to reflect on their peculiar relationship with the digital image, the ordered repetition of stitches echoing the pixellation of a digital print.

Smudge closed on Saturday, but these works will be included in a publication produced by Actar, Madrid, due for release in late 2010.