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Richard Feigen

 Richard Feigen is always in the news a lot, but I recently saw him written up in a New York Times article about the state of the Old Masters auction at Sotheby's. 

Feigen's gallery is one of the most well respected
galleries in all of New York City. He has been dealing in art since 1957 after getting his start in Chicago and moving to New York shortly thereafter. He deals mostly in Old Masters but represents a few lucky contemporary artists. Feigen is not one of those hotshot "in-one-moment-out-the-next." He is a mainstay in the worldwide art scene and will continue to be for as long as he wishes. This is certainly one of the names you have to know if you're going to have a conversation about the movers and shakers in the art world.

Here is some information about his most recent show which closed just last month.

"RICHARD L. FEIGEN & CO. will open an exhibition entitled EROS on October 30th at 34 East 69th Street, New York. The exhibition closes on January 9, 2009.
EROS \noun 
    1: the ancient Greek god of love, son of Aphrodite; identified by the Romans as Cupid 
    2: physical love; sexual yearning or desire 
    3: sexual drive, libido; the sum of all instincts for self-preservation and sexual pleasure 

Love, passion, temptation, lust, desire, union, sexual dreams and fantasies—all these permutations of Eros have inspired artists from ancient times to the present. This exhibition brings together a select group of paintings, sculptures, drawings, prints, photographs, and video art from the 16th century to the present, which explore the theme of Eros in its infinite permutations of form and meaning—a dynamic principle responsible for life as it is inevitably associated with death.

The exhibition includes drawings by the 19th-century French artist Girodet-Trioson inspired by Ovid’s Metamorphoses, in which the Greek god Zeus, variously disguised, seduces the nubile and innocent objects of his desire; a monumental oil by the 16th-century Italian Mannerist Nosadella depicting the ancient tale of Aerope, wife of King Atreus, who helps her husband’s brother steal the golden fleece in return for becoming her lover; and a painting by the 17th-century Dutch artist, Willem van Mieris, Joseph and Potiphar’s Wife, based on the Old Testament story of the virtuous Joseph, who rejects the adulterous advances of his employer’s wife. Also showcased are erotic female nudes, presented for the male viewer’s delectation by Marquet, Matisse, Cezanne, Picasso, Schiele, Klimt, Wesselmann, and Mutu, and works with clear homoerotic meaning by Delvaux, Jess, and Ray Johnson. Sexual dreams and fantasies inspire works by Surrealists Ernst, Dali and Hugnet, while the disturbing connection between sex and death is explored in the photos of Hans Bellmer. The exhibition also features a confrontational late sculpture by Louise Bourgeois, an exquisite and powerful video entitled The Lovers by Bill Viola, and one of John Currin’s best-known and most provocative sexual encounters, Rotterdam of 2006.

It seems a timely moment to revisit Herbert Marcuse’s “positive thought” in his Eros and Civilization that “achievements of advanced industrial society would enable man to (shape his) world in accordance with his Life Instincts…to make the human body an instrument of pleasure rather than labor.”"

Pretty cool for a gallery show, no?



Kieran Shep


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