I was intrigued by the news that Bravo was holding open casting calls for their untitled art star reality show. "Who will show up," I wondered, "and what will their art look like? I bet it will be a 'colorful' day." (art pun!)
As if in answer to my inner monologue, the New York Times had a reporter on the front "lines" (I am on fire today) of Saturday's NYC casting call. More than 150 hopefuls were in line by 8:30 am, toting work that included "a ghoulish portrait of a face that appeared to be Michael Jackson’s melded with Elvis’s; a crazily beaded mannequin torso with the sparkly word “GIRL” attached like a tiara to the top of its head; a Caravaggio-esque painting of St. Sebastian, skewered and suffering; a photo-realistic canvas so large it arrived on a truck. At the corner of Horatio and Hudson Streets one artist was slowing traffic considerably as he applied bright blue swirly paint to the body of a topless woman who was wearing only a flesh-colored thong."
Remember, in art, there is no such thing as TMI.
The article addressed some interesting questions and challenges that the show will face. Those who watch Project Runway and Top Chef are familiar with "timed" challenges in which, say, designers are let loose in a hardware store and told they must construct a ballgown in 15 minutes out of Spackle and insulation. How will these tests and tasks translate to art practice? Sketch a caricature with a carrot? Paint a landscape with your toes, blindfolded? I also wonder how multimedia artist will be challenged equally. Regardless of their influences or style, all cooks basically work with the same ingredients. How will a photographer, an oil painter, and a digital artist meet on the same playing field?
Regardless, I think it's an interesting concept, and one that could showcase a wide range of talents and personalities. If this show ever actually makes it into production, I would totally watch it.
Hundred Try Out for Art-World Reality Show (NY Times)
(photos by Todd Heisler/NY Times)