Noah Becker, Invitation to the Whitehot Magazine curated magazine Launch Festival, 2007, photograph
(Article that appeared in the newspaper Chelsea Now, NYC Sept 2007)
BY ABBY LUBY
If you were checking out the lively art scene last weekend between Delancey and E. 6th Street, you couldn’t miss the large vinyl banners draping three trucks: the Whitehot Office Truck, Whitehot Cinema Truck, and Whitehot Concert Truck.
The vehicles were parked for The Whitehot Magazine of Contemporary Art’s coming out party, the first physical celebration of the online publication. Occupying real space in the burgeoning art mecca of the Lower East Side was Whitehot publisher Noah Becker. Becker said the festival was a conceptual piece based on a specific proposal from the curator.
The festival was curated by Jan Van Woensel, who situated the Whitehot Trucks near two art galleries: Envoy at 131 Chrystie Street and Smith-Stewart at 54 Stanton Street.
The group Forest Fire between performance, Whitehot Festival, New York 2007 (performance truck)
Whitehot (www.whitehotmagazine.com) launched in March 2007, and was embraced by a growing international community of artists who sought its immediacy for art news, reviews and informal dialogue. The monthly online publication includes reviews authored by writers, artists, curators and college professors from New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Montreal, Toronto, Vancouver, London, Berlin, Paris, Amsterdam, Dublin, Zurich, and Tokyo.
Belgian Curator Jan Van Woensel (far right) in front of the Whitehot Magazine film truck parked
at Envoy gallery NYC. The Trucks were parked in three locations with three thematic functions:
1. Film truck featuring the Bushwick Film Festival
2. Interview Truck
3. Performance Truck
For Becker, the support to hold the New York launch Festival was overwhelming, especially with some surprise appearances from oversees contributors.
“We had people like Tamsin Clark of the Serpentine Gallery and Victoria & Albert Museum in London show up with Diane Smyth, who is deputy editor of the British Journal of Photography,” Becker recounted. “Also Shana Nys Dambrot, the California art critic and author was here along with photographer/writer Leigh Harris from Japan. These folks just wanted to be here because something interesting was happening.”
Interviews inside the Whitehot Office truck were staged in a cozy ‘mise-en-scene’ replete with couch, chair, area rug, cocktail table and lamp. Among those being chatted up were Paul Laster, editor at Art Asia Pacific, Artkrush.com and Boldtype.com, popular New York culture critic and curator Carlo McCormick and artist Jim Powers.
Becker marveled at how local artists and writers volunteered their time to the festival.
“A lot of people came together to make this festival happen,” he said. “People at the festival had the opportunity to know about what we were doing in a more direct way, as opposed to just over the Internet — this was a direct connection.”
Local bands performing on Thursday and Friday nights in the Whitehot Concert Truck across from the Envoy Gallery were The Quavers, Brent Green, Huff This!, Forest Fire, Noah Becker Jazz Ensemble & Guests, Cassanova Brown. Although Whitehot had a sound permit, not a noise permit, amplified sound was not allowed except for microphones. Some bands had to improvise.
Greggory Bradford, Sticker Design, 2007 Whitehot Magazine Festival
Films ran both Thursday and Friday nights at the cinema truck on Chrystie Street and were mostly shorts curated by Kweighbaye Kotee of the Bushwick Film Festival, a collective of emerging and underground filmmakers. A handy map pointed out both truck sites and the participating east side galleries including Smith-Stewart, Envoy, Thierry Goldberg Projects, Little Cakes, Sunday, Rivington Arms, and 31 Grand.
Unlike the competitive edge of printed art magazines, Whitehot garnered support from other online cultural publications like ArtKrush and Flavorpill, each advertising the festival on their site. Whitehot also partnered with Club Midway and The Cascade High School - Center for Multimedia Communications.
Jan Van Woensel, curator Whitehot Magazine Festival, New York, 2007
WM's Gregg Bradford placing the final touches on the banners.
Festival assistants Cynthia Hisieh and Nickolaus Typaldos
Live interview by Afrika Brown with Hanna Fushihara director of Little Cakes Gallery
Festival Visitors at Envoy Gallery, Sept. 2007 NYC
Whitehot Magazine writers Afrika Brown and Greggory Bradford
SELECTED ARTICLES CONDUCTED IN CONJUNCTION WITH THE CURATED MAGAZINE FESTIVAL AS PUBLISHED IN WHITEHOT MAGAZINE OF CONTEMPORARY ART:
Brent Green interview by Kate Strassman
Robert C. Morgan by Jan Van Woensel
Carter Mull @ Rivington Arms by Brendan Wilcox
Ylva Ogland @ Smith Stewart by Mark Bloch
Timothy Greenfield Sanders interview by Thomas Butter
Ahmed Alsoudani @ Thierry Goldberg Projects by Patty Harris
Paul Laster and Carlo McCormick interview by Shana Nys Dambrot
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Whitehot Magazine collaborates with high level artists and curators internationally.