Monday, October 27, 2008

The Vision of Steve Lazarides

The Vision of Steve Lazarides

Gallery owner Steve Lazarides delivered blunt force trauma to the foundation of the traditional art world with his Outsiders exhibit. The exhibit, which featured Polly Morgan, Jonathan Yeo, Antony Micallef, Mark Jenkins and others, proves that an art exhibit can be successful without direct advertising and media hype. Lazarides and his artists reveal what can be accomplished by taking an unorthodox approach to exhibiting and marketing. In that I see great vision-- it is the kind of positive change that we need in the dynamics of the art world. I admire Steve Lazarides for what he has accomplished.
“Jonathan Yeo might be termed an inside-Outsider. A talented self-taught portrait painter, he's nonetheless created some of the most controversial and amusing artworks of the past few years.” -- Steve Lazarides

The proof is in the numbers-- over 30,000 visitors found their way to the exhibit in New York even though no direct advertising was involved. Awareness for the exhibit was spread by word of mouth-- from one artist to another, from one teenager to fifty-- which then spread like wildfire on the internet. The power of this cycle of communication is important if compared to recent media hyped exhibits, such as the Gilbert & George retrospective, which received less foot traffic even though G & G are considered titans of the art world establishment.
“Antony Micallef is an accomplished painter and sculptor who has managed to achieve recognition within the art establishment, and yet continue to maintain an uneasy relationship with the mainstream.”-- Steve Lazarides

Many of the artists represented by Steve Lazarides have relied on the internet to some degree in order to establish public awareness of their work. Thus, the popularity of the exhibit reveals the influence that the internet can have on the art world as well as the art market. These artists have strayed from the traditional path of the art world-- they have carved out their own destiny by utilizing websites, blogs, and social networking. By creating their own path these artists have ended up exhibiting in major museums and galleries.
“Polly Morgan's 'To Every Seed His Own Body'. Her art fits in with the rest of the Outsiders in that it inventively jolts the viewer into re-evaluating their environment.”-- Steve Lazarides

Due to the internet the public finally has a say in what they desire to view. One could say that the Outsiders reveals the direction of art that the public is demanding. Of the exhibit Lazarides has stated, “the work is very accessible – you don't need an art history degree to understand it; the same way an idea isn't necessarily any less powerful if not communicated in a complex manner.” The question is… will other gallery owners take note of this accomplishment? Will they be more open to emerging artists who do not fit their traditional expectations? Will they acknowledge that utilizing social networks and blogs can be a positive direction to take?
Links of Interest:
The Outsiders
Myartspace Interview with Mark Jenkins
Take care, Stay true,

Brian Sherwin
Senior Editor

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Yeo is hopelessly dull, no life to his work at all, whats the fuss?
The next guy patently art school, whats the fuss?
Taxidermist works better in photos where a real life animal can be studied close up, and dead animals dry out adn are to far away protected in absurd scenarios, Whats the fuss?


no fuss at all outside of a different presentation during the beginning of hard times.

Imperial clothng once again.
Art collegia delenda est.