Tuesday, December 21, 2004

Sanford vs. Wiley

Reading Monday's NYTimes article on Kehinde Wiley I was again reminded of the very similar but lesser known work of Tom Sanford.

I think they are about the same age, and got their MFA's a year apart. Kehinde from Yale and Tom from Hunter. Kehinde Wiley here, Tom Sanford here.

(UPDATE 2008 - i think Tom didn't get his degree... a few credits short or something)

Wiley seems to be better at marketing himself and making money, here he offers a digital print of one of his paintings in a faux-gold frame, edition of 30, price on request. I put in a price request and will let you know later how much.

I was aware of Sanford before Wiley, we were both included in a January 2002 group show (put on by EYESAW) in Tokyo, although Sanford was the featured artist and star of the show. That was a horrible night. I got trashed out of my mind on cheap wine and then attacked by chinpira from a tattoo exhibition upstairs. I was in a chokehold on the floor and can remember girls shouting "stop it, you're killing him" in both English and Japanese. If you know anything about Japan you know that tattoo exhibitions there attract gangstas. The real ones. Not sure I didn't deserve it, can't really remember very much.

I was so drunk I started to try to take down my piece and leave, but the organizers talked me out of it, and can remember being comforted by Johnny Walker and Tom's Japanese dealer Saito Tomoya. I ended up waiting for the chikatetsu (subway) gates to open and made my way to a bathroom stall where I passed out until noon, awakened by an obasan banging on the door wanting to clean the place. Nothing unusual about a drunk man passed out in a Shibuya bathroom stall but she was pretty surprised when a gaijin opened the door!

That's the last time I got blitzed.

Merry Christmas! (no more posting until after the 26th)

Next Kehinde Wiley posting: HERE


Zeke's, the Montreal Art Gallery said...


Great story. Once you're back on the wagon, I gotta show you Montreal. No real gangsters per se, so it might be considered "safer," but a fun time can still be had by all.

Zeke's, the Montreal Art Gallery said...


And, now after looking at some of the paintings - you might want to suggest to Tom Sanford that he try his hand at selling the 50 Cent Icon to the Musee d'Art Contemporain here. The new director is a BIG fan.

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