The covers of Dan’s papers are reimagined in a new art exhibition

The works presented on Dan’s papers Blankets hold a special place in the hearts of many East End residents and visitors. Whether it is a simple aesthetic appreciation or something more complex, entangled in feelings of nostalgia and longing for past summers, young days and memories, it is not uncommon for people save their favorites. One family even lined their basement walls with week after week of Dan’s blankets. And, of course, any local artist will tell you what a pleasure and what an honor it is to be chosen for a cover, to be part of this legacy.

Today East End Arts (EEA) in Riverhead is celebrating 35 years of Dan’s papers coverage with their 2022 member show, Dan’s reinventedopen from Friday 29 January to Friday 4 March.

For this innovative exhibition, the AEE asked its members to come back to the history of Dan’s papers covers, find one that inspired them and interpret it in their own style. The resulting works span a wide range of media and styles – some directly recreating past covers, while others take the image somewhere quite different from the original.

Wendy Weiss, East End Arts Membership + Gallery ManagerAnne Sherwood Pundyk

Dan’s reinvented is the brainchild of Wendy Weiss, EEA Membership and Gallery Manager, who came up with the idea on her own, independent of Dan’s papersalthough owner Vicki Schneps, founder Dan Rattiner and the team were happy to give Weiss their endorsement after she shared her idea.

“I wanted to do something really unique that hadn’t been done before, and I wanted it to be something that would be for artists of all mediums,” says Weiss. “I grew up in Bridgehampton, literally around the corner from the old Dan’s office on Montauk Highway,” she adds, describing her connection to the newspaper. “Dan’s has always been something that is part of my roots.

Eileen Novack (Pinned Heart, photograph on acrylic (16.25 x 30 inches) inspired by the cover of February 12, 2021 by Hulbert Waldroup for Dan's Reimagined
Eileen Novack (Pinned Heart, photograph on acrylic (16.25 x 30 inches) inspired by the cover of February 12, 2021 by Hulbert WaldroupCourtesy of East End Arts

More importantly, Weiss says she introduced the concept to some EEA member artists and they loved it. Among those she viewed was April 20, 2018 Dan’s papers cover artist Adam Straus, who told Weiss how much being selected for a cover meant to him. For the show, Straus chose to perform the recent July 16, 2021 cover of radio icon and talented painter Howard Stern, recreating the same Deerfield Road (Watermill) scene in a beautiful mixed media piece incorporating Dan’s papers pages and oil paint, and adding a big red balloon. He titled it “Balloon Over Howard Stern”.

“What’s super cool about this show is that it has a full range of different mediums – we have watercolors, we have oils, there’s pastel in there, we have 3D installations, we we’ll have neon, we’ve got fiber art, we’ve got literary art, where a writer took a cover and it inspired a short story,” Weiss says, also adding photography to the long list. also a few former cover artists participating – one of whom reinvented his own cover,” she continued, referring to Straus, January 7 cover artist Lisa Claisse and April 23, 1999 cover artist Glen Hansen, who used physical copies of his issue to make a pair of concept pieces.

Installation “Hanksy Original” (11 x 14 inches) by Glen Hansen from his own cover of Dan’s Papers, April 23, 1999Courtesy of East End Arts

One of Hansen’s renditions, “Hanksy Original,” follows British street artist Banksy’s lead, shredding half the cover and hanging it out of a frame, just like Banksy did with his 2018 piece “Girl with Balloon” moments after it sold for $1.4 million. at auction. When the hammer fell, a chipper built into the frame devoured half of the painting, causing a stir in the art world. The infamous piece, now titled ‘Love is in the Bin’, later fetched $25.4 million at auction in October 2021, making it the most expensive Banksy to date. day. For his second piece on the show, Hansen cut his art from his cover and titled it “Appropriate This, Prince”, in honor of controversial appropriation artist Richard Prince.

In a sample 3D cover, artist Sherry Davis created two balls of denim scraps, one 14-inch and one 20-inch, from Christopher Lucore from November 5, 2021 Dan’s papers blanket. Meanwhile, artist Neil B. Young created a 3.5-inch Parisian plaster sculpture of The Big Duck, which Mike Stanko painted for December 8, 2017. Dan’s blanket. Another artist, Eileen Kelly, painted “The Journey Within”, her acrylic and impasto interpretation of the very first Dan’s papers cover, painted by Elaine de Kooning for the September 11, 1987 issue. The list goes on and on.

Eileen Kelly (The Journey Within, mixed media, acrylic paint and impasto (22 x 56 inches) inspired by Dan's first cover art from 9/11/1987 by Elaine de Kooning for Dan's Reimagined
Eileen Kelly (The Journey Within, mixed media, acrylic paint and impasto (22 x 56 inches) inspired by Dan’s first cover art from 9/11/1987 by Elaine de KooningCourtesy of East End Arts

” It was really fun. Everyone has so much fun creating things. Some people really get a little dark, and some people just use new techniques and new colors,” says Weiss, clearly thrilled with the exciting show she put on.

“I had read an article about the covers and how (Dan Rattiner) came up with this idea, and a lot of people thought it was a terrible idea, but he was like, ‘No, I think you’re wrong, and I’m just gonna do it anyway! And I love it,” adds Weiss. “It’s such a great origin story for how the covers came to be. I thought that was super cool, and if he hadn’t had that guts, it never would have been what it is. It definitely supported the inspiration of the show.

As Weiss explains, Dan’s reinvented pays tribute to Dan and all the artists who have graced the cover of this publication over the past 35 wonderful years.

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