Lot Details & Additional Photographs
Watercolor, pencil, and charcoal on paper or cardboard, most signed, identified, and dated 2012/2013, unframed.
In 2013, Cortez curated an exhibition titled by RE:QUEST
at Clic Gallery, New York. The show was a collaboration with Re:Quest Model Management and featured artwork by studio artists + models. Included in the show were works by Eliza Douglas, Taras Sereda, David Agbodji, Cole Mohr, David Alexander Flinn, Mateus Lages, Rivers Plasketes, Ira Chernova, Stefani Pappas, Samuel Zakuto, Melissa Ling, and Marco Torres. The drawings offered here were exhibited in this show.
Taras Sereda studied at the State Academy of Arts and Design in Kharkov, Ukraine. He immigrated to the United States in 2011 and lives and paints in New York. Sereda counts Egon Schiele as his favorite artist and models his mostly figurative work on friends and fellow models.
Diego Cortez was one of the first curators to "discover" Sereda and include his work in the "by RE:QUEST" exhibition. Since then, Sereda has exhibited in numerous international venues from Paris to Berlin.
25 x 19 in. (the largest; varying sizes)From the Estate of the late Diego Cortez, New York and North Carolina
Diego Cortez (1946-2021), an art curator and filmmaker, was a cultural cornerstone in New York City who helped shape the art, music, and film scene from the 1970s forward. Among his incalculable list of accomplishments, Cortez is credited with launching the career of Jean-Michel Basquiat when he included him in his major 1981 exhibition New York/New Wave
Cortez (née James Curtis), was raised in Geneva, Illinois, and went on to attend Illinois State University and later the School of the Art Institute of Chicago for a Master's degree. He changed his name to Diego Cortez in 1973 when moving to New York in honor of his hometown of Geneva, a Hispanic neighborhood. Early on, Cortez developed and fostered numerous connections with major figures in New York and he established himself as a key player. He worked as a studio assistant for artists Dennis Oppenheim and Vito Acconci and later directed music videos for rock bands Blondie and Talking Heads. He also wrote Private Elvis
, a photographic book about Elvis Presley's time in the army in West Germany.
Cortez cofounded the Mudd Club in 1978, a hybrid nightclub/art space in Tribeca that was frequented by celebrities, artists, and musicians. It was on the dance floor of the Mudd Club that he first met Basquiat. In 1981, Cortez curated New York/New Wave
, a major avant-garde exhibition at MoMA PS1 in Queens. It featured a new generation of artists as well as art superstars, such as Basquiat, Andy Warhol, Nan Goldin, Keith Haring, Fab Five Freddy, Robert Maplethorpe, and others. New York/New Wave
was a turning point in the art world, as it ushered in anti-establishment art forms such as graffiti art and street art.
The transformative ideas Cortez put in motion throughout his life are threaded throughout New York City and beyond. In this collection you will see links between the Cortez as the collector, the artists and makers of these works, as well as the subjects. This selection of objects from Cortez's collection touches upon seminal connections he had throughout his monumental life and career.
Good estate condition; few edge nicks, creases, and one with skinning; some smudges.