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Photo by: Marshall Astor

Prada Marfa, the undisputed most interesting Prada store in the world, has a uncertain future thanks to anti-advertising legislature passed four decades ago by Lyndon B. Johnson and Lady Bird Johnson. The law, the 1965 Highway Beautification Act, prohibits advertising on certain stretches of Texas highways, including U.S. 90, the highway Prada Marfa has been installed beside for about eight years by artists Michael Elmgreen and Ingar Dragset.

Local authorities have ruled that the installation is actually a Prada ad, and not a piece of art using the Prada logo. The New York Times points out that the store has Prada's blessing, and its inventory of modified Prada bags and shoes were chosen and donated by the company. The installation however, doesn't receive any financial support from the fashion brand, and was instead funded by two nonprofits, the Art Production Fund in New York and the local Ballroom Marfa.

Apparently, Prada Marfa's legal problems started earlier this summer when Playboy Magazine paid for an advertisement featuring a neon version of their bunny logo a few miles away, clearing violating the same Highway Beautification Act.

Many of the collaborations taking place during the time on board the train for Doug Aitken's "Station to Station" are of a musical type, Ariel Pink and Thurston Moore jamming on a tune for instance. But Danish-Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson is using the lanscape itself in his art. He's installed a kinetic drawing machine on the train, which consists of a suspended tray lined with paper and an inked ball, documenting the topography the travelers pass over from New York to California. According to designboom, Eliasson hopes to end the trip with approximately 20 drawings, which he'll complete when he returns home to Berlin.

Check out a video of the machine installed on a train in Germany, and a few images of the work below.








When the Spanish light artists at Luz Interruptus installed and illuminated 800 condoms filled with blue water, they chose a politically charged location. A square in Madrid that previously housed a public swimming pool had been closed two years earlier by local politicians. Even worse, new plans to develop the square into a tourist market would take the space from locals completely. To reference the need for community recreation, and the history of the square, the artists designed and installed an interactive sculpture called "Prophylactic rain that doesn’t wet anything" with the help of a few local kids.











Using a massive mirror and some creative angles, Argentine artist Leandro Erlich has recreated the facade of a Victorian terraced house destroyed during World War II as a piece of interactive art on a stretch of Ashwin Street in Dalston. The installation, which places the building's facade on the ground, and reflects that image to a near perfect perspective, allows visitors to hang from windows and climb the walls of the house without actually stepping off the ground. According to an artist's statement in the New York Times, a team that specializes in huge mirrors was brought in from Belgium to collaborate on the project.

Dalston House is presented by the Barbican Gallery as part of the London Festival of Architecture, and will be open through August 4. Find info on readings, screenings, and various events at online at the Barbican. Early arrival is suggested. 




 

Among many others things, the latest installation from Tomás Saraceno depicts gravity. After observing the different levels and planes created by orbiting planets, the artist designed a system of climbable nets and plastic spheres to allow visitors to Düsseldorf's K21 Ständehaus museum to observe their surroundings from a different perspective. The three-leveled steel wire construction is suspended 25 meters above the museum's piazza and features half-a-dozen inflated PVC "spheres."

Non thrill-seeking museum-goers, or those unable to climb through the nets, are an equal part of the installation. A similar sensation of falling and suspension is possible looking up at the climbers, and visitors on the ground provide a necessary context.

"In Orbit" opens this week at K21 Ständehaus. 







Miranda July's upcoming "We Think Alone" project will exist only in the intimate space of the personal inbox. Over the course of 20 weeks, July will send subscribers 20 emails containing excepts from actual email correspondence from Lena Dunham, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Kirsten Dunst, Sheila Heti, and more. The idea of sharing emails not meant for publication came about after July noticed the surprising amount of intimacy in mundane email composition. She writes, "How they comport themselves in email is so intimate, almost obscene — a glimpse of them from their own point of view."

We Think Alone is part of a show called "On The Tip of My Tongue" commissioned by Magasin 3. Read more and sign up.

It takes approximately 200 trucks worth of dirt to build a two-acre field of wheat in lower Manhattan. And if farmed correctly, those two acres can grow about 1,000 pounds of healthy, edible wheat.

Those figures are not an estimate. In 1982, directly adjacent to the World Trade Center, artist Agnes Denes planted and farmed two acres of golden wheat as part of an installation called "Wheatfield - A Confrontation: Battery Park Landfill, Downtown Manhattan." The confrontation she describes isn't limited to the visual strangeness of seeing a farmer ride a tractor in front of a city skyline. Instead, the project also speaks to the confrontation of farming wheat on land valued at $4.5 billion, and bigger issues of mismanagement leading to world hunger and food waste. 

After the harvest, Denes took the grain to 28 cities and distributed the seeds for planting in a number of countries.

Photos from Confrontation are on exhibit at MoMa's Ps1 in Queens as part of their #Expo1 series.








Back in March, the National revealed the cover art for its new LP, Trouble Will Find Me, a black and white image showing the top of a woman's head inside some kind of mirror system. That image is actually a scene from an installation staged at RISD in 2003 by the artist Bohyun Yoon. The installation, called Fragmentationfeatured a man and woman lying nude with four mirror panels spread evenly from their ankles to head. By presenting "depersonalized" human bodies Yoon intended to draw a parallel between modern science and the consequences of plastic surgery on the human form. 

The National's sixth album, Trouble Will Find Me, will be released by 4AD on May 20, and is currently streaming on iTunes




This Sunday March 24, Doug Aitken will stage "MIRROR", his latest Happening, at the Seattle Art Museum. Like his "SONG 1" Happening at the Hirshhorn in DC last year, Aitken's latest project was conceived with the building's architecture in mind. His goal is to transform the facade of the museum into a living entity of LEDs that reacts to the changing environment, like weather data and pedestrian traffic, of the surrounding city.

In addition to the facade installation, musicians from the Seattle Symphony Orchestra will play compositions from Terry Riley and Steve Reich, and a series of conversations will be held within the museum. 

The Happening will be unveiled on March 24 at 6:30pm. More info is available from the Seattle Art Museum