Provocative Art

Provocative Art

Saw an AMAZING show at c/o The Maidstone last night. Josefin Hardinger’s photographs were so interesting and unusual. I’ve never seen anything like them.
The body of work on view, manipulated portraits of the artist (an absolute doll by the way!) and a friend back home in Sweden, really made me stop and think–an extraordinary thing for this “been there, done that” art enthusiast.
Josefin’s statement on the selected image here, “Gender,” reads: “It is about questioning gender stereotypes … Is it a feminine man or is it a masculine woman? It does not matter. It is a person. The photo is an inspiration for people to be and act the way they want to …”
I think the ever-stylish and always amazing Dianne B. summed up the work best, “This is truly unique,” she said as we studied a number of prints in the series. She noted that other photographers, such as Cindy Sherman and Diane Arbus, had touched on similar territory but that Josefin’s fresh take was anything but derivative. Agreed.
Also got to spend some quality time last night with Maidstone owner Jenny Ljundberg (Andrew Reice, are your ears burning? Can’t wait for the return of the Swedish chefs!); GM Sophie Boner and Design Manager Malin Hedblom (excellent curating); plus Lys Marigold, who reminded me of the classic charm of Coco Chanel; Faith Popcorn, who arrived for dinner as my “date” Elizabeth George and I enjoyed a prandial beverage in the bar; artist Blair Seagram, who looked as fetching as the beautiful flowers outside; fellow scribe and jet-setter Heather Buchanan; caterer extraordinaire Janet O’Brien, who told me that I absolutely must quote her as saying “Buy your rosĂ© before Memorial Day before it sells out.”; and artist, gallerist and wit Karyn Mannix and her friend Laura, whose last name I didn’t catch but who I think is terrific. I also got a chance to visit with Mark Segal and Christa Maiwald–great to catch up–plus Laura Perotti, who was resplendent in the perfect spring outfit and whose baby blue bag I must have; artist Sue Heatley, who I just interviewed last week for a magazine piece; dapper and always gracious Michael Braverman; former coworker and gal-about-town Eva Saleh and her husband Drew; and even my old neighbor, Yvonne, who I first met at the Maidstone back when I was doing the Art & Dine interviews a couple of years ago. I hope I didn’t miss anyone here or there–it was a good crowd.
Learn more about the artist at http://www.josefinhardinger.se

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