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Let’s Rock and Roll at the Met

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Lovers of Rock and Roll time to Play It Loud: Instruments of Rock & Roll, at the Metropolitan Museum of Art . Over 130 instruments, played by a cross-section of iconic musicians, are all tucked into one space.

Play It Loud Metropolitan Museum of Art Chuck Berry

All images courtesy Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Chuck Berry guitar that was used to record “Johnny B. Goode.” Berry (1926-2017) is considered to be rock & roll’s prime innovator. Guitars by Muddy Waters, the Beatles’ George Harrison, Heart’s Nancy Wilson, and dozens of others, are also on display. Guitars primarily make up the exhibit. Jimi Hendrix white guitar he played at Woodstock, Prince’s 1993 “Love Symbol” guitar, Pete Townshend’s smashed guitars encased in lucite, Joan Jett’s guitar and Jack White’s red Airline guitar that he played with The White Stripes.

Eddie Van Halen’s guitar played on “Eruption,” is in the exhibit’s Guitar Gods section. His 1975 “Frankenstein” red, black, and white guitar is in a glass display, and you can see both the front and back of the Fender that he took to with a chisel and a hammer to cut holes to make room for a Gibson pickup, and later twice re-painted.

Play It Loud Instruments of Rock and Roll Guitar Gods Eddie Van Halen Frankenstein Guitar

Eddie Van Halen’s 1975 “Frankenstein” guitar can be seen from both sides in the exhibit’s Guitar Gods section.

In an interview clip Van Halen states, “Ninety percent of the things that I do on guitar, if I had taken lessons and learned to play by the book, I would not play at all the way I do…Crossing a Gibson with a Fender was out of necessity, because there was no guitar on the market that did what I wanted.”

Eddie’s 1978 rig is also on display, along with rigs of Jimmy Page of Led Zeppelin, Keith Richards of The Rolling Stones, and Tom Morello of Rage Against the Machine, each accompanied by video clips.

Eddie Van Halen 1978 rig Play It Loud Metropolitan Museum of Art

Eddie Van Halen’s 1978 rig.

Jimmy Page initially worked as a studio musician, his custom double neck guitar is on display—a combined acoustic and electric guitar that he created to play “Stairway to Heaven.”

Jimmy Page Double neck Acoustic Electric Guitar Play It Loud Metropolitan Museum of Art

Jimmy Page’s double neck guitar. 

Then there are the piano’s and drums. Jerry Lee Lewis’s gold baby grand piano, Lady Gaga’s custom Artpop piano, The Who’s drum kit, Steve Miller’s analog synthesizer and EP-3 Tape Echo, and Emerson, Lake & Palmer’s towering Moog synthesizer. Music festival posters from Woodstock, Monterey, and other concert events are highlighted as well.

Play It Loud Moog Synthesizer keyboard instruments Metropolitan Museum of Art

In the background, Emerson, Lake & Palmer’s Moog synthesizer. In the front, Steve Miller’s analog synthesizer (right), with the Echoplex EP-3 Tape Echo, left.

The exhibit’s will be special events and runs through Oct. 1st,

For more information, visit metmuseum.org.

Suzanna, co-owns and publishes the newspaper Times Square Chronicles or T2C. At one point a working actress, she has performed in numerous productions in film, TV, cabaret, opera and theatre. She has performed at The New Orleans Jazz festival, The United Nations and Carnegie Hall. She has a screenplay and a TV show in the works, which she developed with her mentor and friend the late Arthur Herzog. She is a proud member of the Drama Desk and the Outer Critics Circle and was a nominator. Email: suzanna@t2conline.com

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16 Year Old Artist Henri Reed’s Debut Exhibition at Lux Contemporary

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Lux Contemporary, the newest Chelsea gallery adjacent to Rolls Royce New York, will launch “Henri’s World,” a new solo exhibition by 16-year-old LA-based emerging artist, Henri Reed, on view from Friday, April 19th –  Sunday, May 19th at 270 11th Avenue in New York.

The gallery’s owner and renowned celebrity art dealer, Emanuel Friedman, will host an Invite-only artist reception on Thursday, April 18th from 5pm – 8pm. Expected attendees will include a selection of celebrities and pro athletes, who are collectors of Henri’s works.

Henri, who has already created buzz across the country with collectors in L.A., N.Y., Chicago and Miami, including Babyface, will also make his New York City debut as the featured artist at the New York International Auto Show at the Javits Center, where he has created “Year of the Draggin.” More than a painting, the work serves as a tribute to the thrill of drag racing and the spirited culture surrounding it, set in the Year of the Dragon.

Named to honor the enduring appeal of drag racing, this piece captures the essence of a timeless passion. While it fits into a show centered around cars, its significance goes beyond any specific moment in time. Instead, it invites viewers to experience the exhilaration of speed and competition, regardless of when they encounter it. As one admires “Year of the Draggin,” they’re not just looking at a painting—they’re feeling the pulse of a culture that spans generations. And while its creation may be rooted in a particular year, its impact promises to resonate far into the future, leaving viewers to wonder which era of drag racing it truly represents. The work will be spotlighted at the Manhattan Motor Cars booth, spotlighting all the biggest exotic brands like Rimac, Koenigsegg, Bugatti, Bentley, Porsche, Lamborghini and more.

The “Henri’s World” exhibit will take over Lux Contemporary’s gallery space, highlighting over a dozen impactful, large-scale canvases and wood works. The young artist’s highlighted works will include Completa, a work made of two weathered planks of wood that were lying around for weeks in Henri’s studio. He knew he wanted to use them and brought them together, aligning them side by side. With pencil in hand, he began to sketch, treating them not as separate entities but as a unified whole. This piece quickly became the artist’s favorite in the collection. Its significance extends beyond mere materiality, reflecting a profound truth about human connections. When we view others as individuals, we may see only their vulnerabilities. But when we come together, our collective strengths shine forth, overshadowing our weaknesses. “Completa” embodies this essence—the beauty of unity, the power of togetherness.

High on Heels, a depiction of the timeless bond between a loyal canine and its skeletal walker, going beyond life and death. The dog’s love and loyalty shine through, while the walker’s bones remind us of life’s fleeting nature. Yet, together, they show us that love can endure forever. One Million Dollar, a recreation of the dollar bill with a Henri spin pays homage to his brother with his favorite color being green and his birthday spotlighted within the piece. On April 17th, Henri will also be appearing as the featured artist at the New York Stock Exchange’s private gallery collection. He is the youngest artist to be shown in the gallery. The collection is curated by world-famous trader and extensive collector, the “Einstein of Wall Street”, Peter Tuchman. The NYSE’s gallery is seen by world leaders, business titans and foreign dignitaries.

“I paint with shadows and whispers, leaving clues for those who dare to decipher the riddles hidden in plain sight,” said Henri.

Henri’s artistic career began at the age of 14 when he found an old wooden crate in his family’s garage and asked his father if he could use it. Before his parents returned from their dinner that evening, Henri had dismantled the crate and finished an original piece using materials from around the house.  A local collector saw a photo of the piece on Henri’s Instagram and immediately commissioned Henri for a new piece for his own home.  Within the next week, Henri began selling artwork to collectors, including Hollywood celebrities, music stars, and business leaders.

In February 2024, Henri was signed by New York City’s Lux Contemporary Gallery, which has featured works by Banksy, KAWS, Daniel Arsham, Brendan Murphy, Mr. Brainwash, Enrique Cabrera, Keith Haring, Damien Hirst, Jonty Hurwitz, Robert Indiana, Jeff Koons, Robert Longo, Takashi Murakami, King Saladeen and Hunt Slonem. Henri is the first emerging artist that the gallery has represented.

Henri’s World will be on view from Friday, April 19th – Sunday, May 19th at Lux Contemporary at 270 11th Avenue in NY, adjacent to Rolls Royce New York.

Exhibition hours are Mondays -Saturday: 10 AM – 7 PM; Sunday: Closed and by appointment.

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Playwright Mario Fratti’s Art for Sale

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Paintings and illustrations from the art collection of the Broadway show “Nine’s” playwright and critic Mario Fratti is for sale at Jadite Gallery on 10th Avenue.

Fratti was not just a playwright, educator and theater critic with the OCC and Drama Desk, but an art collector.

Fratti was born in L’Aquila, Italy on July 5, 1927. In 1962, he presented his one-act play Suicido at the Festival dei Due Mondi in Spoleto and Lee Strasberg, a guest of the festival, was impressed by his work and invited him to stage it at the Actors Studio. He moved to New York in Hell’s Kitchen in 1963 and worked as a professor at Columbia University and Hunter College, where he was named Professor Emeritus of Italian Literature. Fratti is best known for writing the adaptation of Federico Fellini’s and further developing the musical NINE with Maury Yeston, that opened in 1982 and went on to win five Tony Awards.  Mario died last year at the age of 95.

The exhibit and sales at Jadite Gallery, follows the auction of some of Fratti’s collection. The most expensive piece is on diplay in the gallery’s window, Homage to Mario Fratti by Italian artist David Grazioso  $750. “Prices range from $75—the average is around $200. The sale of these pieces will fund the transposition and translation of newly discovered manuscripts.

Artwork from the Collection of Mario Fratti is on show at Jadite Gallery at 660 10th Avenue (between W46/47th St) until April 13. Opening hours are noon-6pm Tuesday to Saturday.

The art has been entrusted to trusted friend Roland Sainz and Jadite Gallery by renowned theater director and his daughter Valentina.

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Midnight Moment Presents Life Forms

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Each midnight this April, Times Square’s screens become a portal into New York-based artist Tricia McLaughlin’s Life Forms, a humorous fantasy world filled with hard working mutant creatures who toil around the clock constructing an endless city. As these glassy-eyed creatures called “Phantasmachina” mount buildings and scale sidewalks, a threatening figure starts to approach. Undeterred, the organisms continue their Sisyphean task.

Crafted through painting and  3D animations, these life forms are inspired by biotechnology, prosthetics and the exploration of mutation. Striving to anthropomorphize geometry, McLaughlin imbues her community with not only emotions but also a sense of social responsibility.

A recorded musical score by David B. Smith and Omar Zubair will accompany McLaughlin’s Midnight Moment presentation on April 5, 2024 on Duffy Square.

Life Forms is presented in conjunction with McLaughlin’s exhibition phantasmachina, showcasing drawings, paintings and animations sponsored by En Foco at WallWorks Gallery in the Bronx, NY, from April 6–30, 2024. In addition, TFLR Contemporary will present an online exhibition of McLaughlin’s work, Out of the Abyss, from April 1–30, 2024.

Tricia McLaughlin is a physical and digital media artist exploring the transformative effects of technology on nature with unexpected consequences. Mutant creations where function follows form stem from McLaughlin’s intuitive repurposing of robotics, biotechnology, and aeronautics. As McLaughlin explains her process, “each painting and drawing begins as a collection of random marks on a page, allowing my subconscious mind to guide the initial creation. As the artwork develops, I start to see patterns and shapes arranging the chaos. Then I refine and define these elements, gradually transforming the initial marks into living, mechanical beings and/or structures.” Paintings are inserted into animation, 3D-designed constructions inspire paintings.

TFLR CONTEMPORARY is a gallery dedicated to exhibiting emerging and mid-career artists, both in the US and abroad. Exhibitions and curatorial projects are planned throughout the year in various venues and online platforms.

En Foco, Inc. presents U.S.-based photographers and digital imaging artists, focusing on women and people of African, Asian, Latino, Native American, and Pacific Islander heritage. Through exhibitions, workshops, events, and publications, it provides professional recognition, honoraria, and assistance as they grow into different stages of their careers.

The phantasmachina exhibition is co-presented by En Foco, Inc. and WallWorks Gallery, South Bronx, NYC.

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Tony Bennett Auction Exhibition at the Fairmont Hotel in San Francisco

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Tony Bennett: A Life Well Lived,” exclusive exhibition opening at the Fairmont Hotel in San Francisco, California, celebrating the legendary life and career of the iconic pop jazz vocalist before its two-day auction event by Julien’s Auctions taking place April 18th and Friday, April 19th, 2024 at Ertegun Jazz Hall of Fame in Jazz at Lincoln Center. The free public exhibition opens April 8th and runs through April 10th (10am-6pm daily).The Fairmont San Francisco and Mr. Bennett have enjoyed a special relationship for decades. Mr. Bennett first performed his hit “I Left My Heart in San Francisco” in the Venetian Room at the hotel in 1961. The Fairmont San Francisco has had the honor and pleasure of welcoming Mr. Bennett and his family to the hotel for decades. The hotel also touts a special Tony Bennett suite that pays homage to his career and features several pieces of his artwork.Highlights of the exhibition include artifacts pertaining to the American songbook master’s life and career with his special link to San Francisco such as a San Francisco cable car bell award presented to Bennett for his instrumental role in saving the city’s iconic cable car system in the 1980s; a San Francisco Giants jacket worn by Bennett as the Texas Rangers faced the San Francisco Giants in Game 1 of the World Series in San Francisco, California, October 27, 2010 and his white personalized “Bennett” San Francisco Giants jersey; his original “Landscape San Francisco” watercolor painting; as well as record awards, a Grammy nomination plaque for his iconic hit, “I Left My Heart in San Francisco” and more.

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Rachel Rubenstein: Textures Tell a Tale Of Fascinating Distress

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Some things bright and charming are beaming through the early spring drizzle of the lower east side this month. Adjacent to the the damp daffodils of Allen Street’s center median please find Rachel Rubenstein’s sunny Californian canvases that therapeutically manage to make stress look quite appealing.

Beckoning from within FORMah Gallery, Rubenstein pressed then ripped, drizzled then dried. Scraped, then layered. Glazed and gelled and then layered again something sparkly here, then something gritty there. So many layers! Layers of benign linen in even strips, roughly pulled. Ripped canvas ribbons deliberately placed. Flying Irish pennants belying carelessness with concentrated effort.

But it is Rubenstein’s lilting use of color that, Siren like, calls the eye forth in gentle, soothing transitions only to become hopelessly ensnared in her seemingly endless textures. Happily, these are uplifting palettes, for the most part. The canvases are intermittently shimmering and evocative of a rosy dawn, a moody sea, a golden sunset, a turquoise lagoon, so smoothly massaged are the bridges of her hues.

As a whole, the show feels very Malibu. That is, an overarching breezy west coast ease that requires closer inspection to notice the relentless micro-efforts-over-time involved in its creation.

However, one particular canvas hits differently, this one strikingly evocative of a city scape. “Time And Love And You” is like graffiti and neon crayoned over brick with Fisher-Price abandon. Three isolated shapes in stark primary colors. Implying perhaps sun, water, earth in a chunky, urban visual haiku.

“Time And Love And You”

It was our least favorite of the delightful show, like tearing away from the Pacific Coast Highway onto the 405. Perhaps because of its deliberate visual break from the otherwise seamless collection, this canvas had an outsider feel all its own. And thus becomes the most impactful piece in the entire display.

FORMah Gallery

CONNECTED TO ALL THAT IS Rachel Rubenstein
FORMah Gallery
On view through April 13, 2024

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