What's it like to start out at Carole A. Feuerman's studio?

A new intern started at my New York studio this week.  Craig is a graduate of Pratt in Brooklyn, where he studied product design, and he’s going to be gaining experience doing both writing and fabrication work for the studio.  I asked him to write a post about how his first week here has been:

I have worked a lot of different kinds of jobs.  I grew up in Scotland and Ohio, and ever since I moved to New York six years ago it’s been non-stop hustle.  Working for Carole so far has been validating because it feels like the different kinds of work and education I’ve landed in could all be useful in some way here.  Beyond that, her studio is a place where I’m going to have the chance to expand a lot of different skills that I’ve only been able to dip my toes into before.  Instead of spending all day yelling at tourists for the East River Ferry or getting paid under the table to package toffees Uptown, here I get to engage with the art world both as someone who can think and write about the work of a groundbreaking sculptor like Carole and who can work with my hands with the team that realizes her ideas.

Getting down to business with  Survival of Serena.

Getting down to business with Survival of Serena.

Last week I translated Carole’s bio into German, my family language, and Greek, which I learned while attending a university in Athens for a year.  Translating an artist’s biography is a more difficult linguistic task than I expected it to be!  In Greek, I immediately ran into the problem that a direct translation of hyperrealism, “υπερρεαλισμός,” is a word that’s used in Greek to refer to the Surrealist movement of the early 20th century.  It took research on Greek art blogs that talked about Carole and her contemporaries to find out that the movement that she helped pioneer is usually referred to by its English name in Greek to avoid confusion.

In German, there was a different set of obstacles.  German has a lot of what are known as false friends: words that sound the same in German and English but have subtly different uses between the languages.  When I sent my draft to my papa to proofread, he had to remind me that while English uses the word sculpture for both the field of making sculptures and the sculptures themselves, Skulptur in German only refers to the art object produced and the field is usually called Bildhauerkunst.  Luckily these obstacles are enjoyable to overcome; by comparing the way words and ideas are talked about in different languages, it becomes more possible to precisely grasp the ideas themselves and the meaning that underlies the communication mode you’re employing.

In the end, this is one of the exciting things about art as a communication method.  The art objects that Carole produces are ways of producing a dialogue that you would conduct very differently in English or Greek.  That’s been the other engaging thing about beginning work in this studio: the chance to interact intimately with Carole’s work.

This week I waxed a giant inflatable swan at Mana Contemporary in New Jersey, and buffed up giant women to get them ready to show.  In New York, I worked on chasing a cast of a new sculpture and taping up a Balance to be ready for painting.  Spending more time with these sculptures makes room for the strangeness of the studio to sink into me bit by bit: beautiful figures surrounded by disembodied limbs everywhere, crates full of people, scale shifts that leave you unsure if you’re a giant or an ant.  My coworkers switching back and forth unconsciously between calling the sculptures hers, hims, and its.  Watching a models face get consumed by casting goop.  Getting spooked by the bronze bust of a man that I see behind me in the mirror every time I open the bathroom door.

Heath works on  Midpoint.

Heath works on Midpoint.

I talked with the studio team a little about the surreality of the space, and according to them everyone adjusts to it eventually.  The works are their profession, they have to be rationalized and understood practically so that they can be produced to the highest quality.  I understand the necessary trade off, but for now I’m in love with the contrasts in this space, the fantastic interior reality of this artist’s studio invisible to the satellites passing overhead.  I’m thrilled to have the next three weeks of this internship in this space.

—Craig Hartl

Miami Highilight: 'Golden Mean' at MANA MONUMENTAL

by Kelsey Zalimeni

Carole Feuerman is everywhere in Miami this week- in person and with her artworks showing at various fairs. Among her many works on display, the towering bronze 'Golden Mean' is a fair standout and crowd favorite.  

The Golden Mean   greets visitors as they enter  Mana's Wynwood  campus.

The Golden Mean greets visitors as they enter Mana's Wynwood campus.

This past weekend, the bronze Golden Mean located in snowy Peekskill, NY received a special visit from its model, Richard Nuzzolese.  This photo was taken on-site: 

Richard Nuzzolese with his likeness   The Golden Mean   in Peekskill, where the work permanently resides.

Richard Nuzzolese with his likeness The Golden Mean in Peekskill, where the work permanently resides.

Located at Mana Monumental in their Wynwood campus, the twelve-foot Golden Mean stands proud as the crowds flow around it. If you're in Miami and happen by the work, snap a pic and tag @CaroleFeuerman on Twitter or Instagram.  Enjoy the fairs! 

'Kendall Island' To Be Featured At SCOPE MIAMI

by Kelsey Zalimeni

Carole Feuerman's 'Kendall Island' will exhibit at the Gallery Biba booth in Scope Miami this year, alongside works by Mel Bochner and Barbara Segal.  The eye-catching piece is in fact a portrait of Mana Contemporary's marketing director Kendall Tichner, who donned an edgy Chromat suit for the casting.  

Scope Miami opens December 2 and will run all week until closing on the 7th.  Be sure to drop by the Scope Miami Beach Pavilion to witness 'Kendall Island' in person at Gallery Biba, BOOTH G13.

Keeping up with Carole

by Kelsey Zalimeni

Last weekend I had the privilege to spend a busy afternoon with Carole, starting at her busy NYC studio and finishing in New Jersey at the immense Mana Contemporary Art Center.  On this particular Friday, Carole was wrapping up some business in NY when I came to call. I jumped at her invitation to join John Richey and herself on a trip to Mana, where a sculpture was to be transported to her second studio on site, and new prints of Carole's were being developed.

 First order of business- moving 'Monumental City Slicker' from storage to studio. Proper recognition must go out to John on this job... that sculpture is   heavy  .

 First order of business- moving 'Monumental City Slicker' from storage to studio. Proper recognition must go out to John on this job... that sculpture is heavy.

Since we were pressed for time at Mana, Carole and I split off from John at the studio so he could handle the sculpture project. We went down to the second floor to view proofs at Gary Lichtenstein Editions.

Gary and his crew were hard at work when we arrived

Gary and his crew were hard at work when we arrived

These floral swim cap proofs were the prints being considered

These floral swim cap proofs were the prints being considered

After a brief and productive meeting at GLE, we headed back to check on John's progress. To Carole's great relief, he and a Mana employee had managed to get 'City Slicker' in a perfect position for the impending client viewing. 

We left Mana needing Advil and dinner. I thought to myself how hard Carole, John, and the entire Feuerman staff work incredibly hard day in and day out.  Saying our goodbyes on the PATH back to the City, I wished Carole well.  Another reunion has passed, and I'm already looking forward to the next one!