ArtPrize V was as lame and limp as the plump West Michigan gypsies that jammed our streets like the asses that pack their husky Wranglers. The most impressive part of it all was my amazement when one of the 49,000 "art experts" managed to walk more than a block without their heart exploding or eating their fists. I would guess the only contests these masses are qualified to vote on is a barbecue sauce flavor-off, or the Duck Dynasty "Camo Cameo" contest™. Nevertheless, an underwhelming build up didn't sway the west side, Sparta and everyone who lives on Division from giving us their tired, poor and huddled meth heads; making this the year "they" would incontestably win!
I wanted to change the title of this year's article to "Everything is Terrible," but felt it would be unfair to the five people who tried. So until our friends, who wear cigarette brand T-shirts exclusively, completely take control, I give you this year's best.
"Kicking Out the World's Most Annoying Artist Part 2"
The second-annual booting of Artist SinGh — the self-proclaimed "world's best stunt painter" — went down before ArtPrize even started. It was reported that he was kicked out for "expanding the scope of his project beyond the original, signed agreement, without permission." The real reason? World records aren't art and everyone hates him (allegedly).
"IN THE NAME OF JESUS!"
More like IN THE NAME OF AWESOME! Really good for taking pictures with and super-creepy looking — two things I look for in a Jesus. The son of God may not have won any cash, but he clearly won the hearts of people whose pictures show up on my Facebook feed.
This wasn't Containment's first rodeo. It was, however, the first time I bothered checking it out. It's nothing I would cast a vote for*, but it serves a crucial purpose; to numb me with alcohol so I could survive The B.O.B parking lot. The 45-minute walk to it from the other side of the lot is excruciating, but the sweet ambrosia they plied me with allowed me to walk amongst the ArtPeople without breaking down.
All kidding aside, this was at the top of the list of pieces that blew me away. The depth, detail and style were spectacular. It's this and art like it, that make me love ArtPrize. It's the reason I look forward to it every year, and can't wait to see what it will bring in the future.
I write this without the slightest bit of hyperbole: I could have spent the rest of my life authoring a tome dedicated to the worst of ArtPrize. What you see below, is deduction on the most monumental of scales.
"Silkwaves in the Grand"
"Boost Mobile: River Location" is a wacky-arm-guy away from selling burner phones to drug dealers and poor people. If the most impressive facet of your work is that you tossed a few wind flags in a river, you've failed.
"People with Children"
Not the entry, if there was one, but the actual real-life things. If you're trying to squeeze a stroller, a kid on a leash, or a fifth grade class through crowds as big as the fupa you sport, you're not having a good time, and the people around you hate you.
"The Calder Debacle"
Few cared about the sculpture three weeks ago, few care now. I'm not saying "Fleurs et rivière" was a great piece, because it wasn't. I'm saying anyone who cared enough to have an opinion over artistic license should have remembered they don't care. Also, screw the foundation. What are they going to do, take it away from us? Grow balls, Heartwell!
It's hard to enjoy the art (or verbally hate it) while being hard sold like you just drove onto used car lot. Please, don't hand me your fliers garbage, and please don't give me your boring back story — I can read. Why can't you just create something, then die of poverty or a heroin overdose like a respectable artist?
"Sleeping Bear Dune Lakeshore"
This year's winner was our Red Wedding. The ultimate blow was struck when a legion of gumps voted to give a woman who made a blanket 200k. That's right, a blanket. Someone's "Precious Moments" collection just got a lot bigger.
"The Loading Dock"
I had to borrow this spot from the best — admittedly not a hard choice to make — because I couldn't let this go. The only way to describe the feeling you get when seeing it in person, is to imagine what would happen if two girls ate the entire holiday section of a Hobby Lobby and filled one cup... And then poured it in your eyes.
*To be fair, I don't cast a vote for anything.