We have a wonderfully vibrant art scene here – equal to any overseas – and I will feature more of our artists soon. But I couldn’t miss this opportunity to honour one of our own, South African-born artist Robin Rhode, who opened a new show in New York on Jan 10th. And it is a two-part exhibition – spread across both of Lehmann Maupin’s New York galleries on the Lower West Side of Manhattan.
The Gallery at West 26th Street will carry a series of Rhode’s street-performance photographs. Whilst the other will house a unique education intervention Robin is conducting with “Time IN” – a local outreach program specializing in arts education for underprivileged school children.
I really love Bird on Wires, where Robin traces a bird’s flight pattern as it arcs from one perch to the next along a barbed wire fence. The pieces are truly unique: Rhode uses everyday materials like soap, charcoal, chalk or paint to create interesting narratives. And his art is a fascinating blend of disciplines – everything from photography through performance to drawing and sculpture.
At 201 Chrystie Street, a group of 40 to 50 students will use over-sized crayons to color in geometric vinyl graphics applied directly to the walls by Rhode. This piece is called Paries Pictus.The students are all between six and eight years old, and attend PS 63: a primary school in the South Bronx,
If you are in New York – go see this show –Take Your Mind Off the Street is Robin Rhode’s first show in NYC for five years. And will run till February 23. Paries Pictus will be on view until March 9.