1999-2010

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Artist: LA's all-night GLOW fest was "Blow-fest"


“I will return with an equally lame but even more over-hyped extravanganza of so-called ‘art‘! One hundred electric fans blowing at hanging chimes, creating a symphony of ‘clung clung clung’! I will invite noisemakers from across the Southland One thousand inner city schoolchildren puffing on Coke bottles! Pan flute players from every open-air mall in the city! I will call it BLOW!”
--Joaquin Blanco


Right about now, the city of Santa Monica officials are coming off their Esctasy highs and cleaning up the beach after their twelve–hour, all-night, art and sound show that ended a half-hour ago on and around the world-famous Santa Monica Pier. GLOW was the first of its kind in this country, but a copy of Paris’ Nuit Blanche, with lots of glow sticks, flashing lights and trance music from artists of all stripes. The website Defamer put everything into perspective when in its item in the show, it urged readers to “Bring your one-hitter for maximum amplification” (a “one-hitter” being a type of marijuana smoking device or "bong," or any powerful strain of marijuana in which the onset of the high is accomplished in one hit (one dose).

GLOW is just the type of event that LA hipsters cream over. It gives the part-time beret-wearers validation, painting their town as, well, Paris, instead of the place where commerce is king as as the pretty lights blinked on the sand, a few blocks away at the Mann's Criterion, Hollywood was whipping the corpse of Heath Ledger to the biggest box office in history.

But not every prominent local artist is impressed by the extravaganza.

We wound up with ten messages on the office answering machine and a slew of emails from Joaquin Blanco, the émigré Portuguese performance, conceptual and installation artist who first shot to international controversy and acclaim with his 2004 Garbage Cane installation in nearby Westchester (“a giant candy came made up of 30 garbage cans and adorned by faux-crystal lamps…”). Señor Blanco was offended by what he saw!

“It is an overhyped, under-delivered, waste of $7 parking,” he texted us from the scene. “What an amazing disappointment. I cannot describe how lame this is. And what is worse, I will wager that nobody calls them on it! This self-important crap wouldn’t qualify as a neighborhood festival in Lisbon!

“I will return with an equally lame but even more over-hyped extravanganza of so-called ‘art‘! One hundred electric fans blowing at hanging chimes, creating a symphony of ‘clung clung clung’! I will invite noisemakers from across the Southland! One thousand inner city schoolchildren puffing on Coke bottles! Pan flute players from every open-air mall in the city!

"I will call it BLOW!

“Next year, it will be Blow! BLOW! Start learning the pan flute! And whistlers! I will invite people to whistle! Blow! Blow!

1 comment:

Slippy said...

Totally, totally, totally agree with everything you said. Wrote a similar (but much more sucky) review on my blog.

I just can't believe what a total Suck that event was.

The whole city of Santa Monica needs to be fired.