Gallery Girls Episode 2: “I Feel Like We’re Being Raped Right Now”

by Ben Macaulay on August 22, 2012 · 8 comments Gallery Girls

Gallery Girls’s most promising new character.

As a new day dawns on our six art world hopefuls and Maggie, it’s made abundantly clear that each of their morning routines involves its own variety of middlebrow coffee. Chantal explains her multi-hour tardiness (due to French pressed coffee and some yoga) to a frustrated Claudia, who is trying to wipe crimson stains from the walls of End of Century. Either their last episode’s gallery opening involved a wine fight, or The Ritual failed; the state of their finances suggests the latter.

After watching Maggie operate her single-serve coffee maker, we cut to Kerri at Nespresso and gain a sneaking suspicion that there’s a corporate sponsor behind this hamfisted editing [Click the link for savings on great Nespresso products! -Ed.]. Kerri is meeting with her boss Tony Abrams, the next tier up on the pyramid of subcontracting out the lives of the rich and famous. The two discuss her new internship with art advisor Sharon Hurowitz and whether it will get in the way of her paid trip with Tony to curate a space in Miami during Art Basel. Because, as Kerri explained when she asked for the internship, her day job just doesn’t get her close enough to the art world.

Later, we follow Kerri to her family’s house on Long Island, where she spends quality time with her father eating chili, watching football, and complaining about “just getting by.” Her father is astonishingly normal. As he keeps one eye on the Giants game, Kerri explains how no one will take her seriously unless she is decked out in a matryoshka doll of furs. We attribute this to the homunculus theory of fashion: assuming your average outfit is at least “fab”, any outfit which potentially hides another, smaller, also fab outfit becomes at least “so fab.” [It should be noted that this theory has been widely discredited in the academic literature. -Ed.]

Meanwhile at Eli Klein’s Home for Wayward Interns, Maggie is upset that Liz has so quickly taken on her old responsibilities, because she doesn’t understand the term ‘replacement.’  Eli sends Maggie on a quick trip to trendy North Williamsburg, where she fears that broken glass will cut her feet through six-inch platform heels and that the zero people on the street will kill her and her camera crew. (note to Maggie: this is called daytime, and it’s when people who work are off working). We’re sure that this is just producer-driven fodder for the show’s false Brooklyn/Upper East Side partisanism. However, her attempts to hold a dog bowl under a water cooler without immediately thinking to relay the water with a plastic cup are proof of a deeper irrationality than reality television can fabricate.

We must give Maggie some credit, though. While trying to discourage Liz from being Eli’s personal assistant and grumbling some stories about picking up his dirty underwear, she manages to hit a nerve by pointing out that being a personal assistant is actually a job. “It was literally being someone’s personal assistant!” she says, as if ending a campfire ghost story with a flashlight pointed up at her face.

'The worst, most ghetto place.'

The girls (sans Liz) converge at an auction led by Simon de Pury, a familiar face for those who watched Work of Art. Art advisor and actual person Sharon Hurowitz is there to buy a Damien Hirst for a client, and to show the process to intern Kerri. The rest of the girls are there for no reason at all; Claudia says something about wanting to see art being sold [Perhaps a nice change from End of Century -Ed.], but the scene of aristocrats fighting over big names like Hirst doesn’t seem applicable to Chantal’s glorified jewelry stand. Really they’re just there so that the strawman on Maggie’s arm can tease Claudia for the symmetry of her dress.

After the auction it’s revealed that Amy is still slutty ol’ Amy because she happened to speak to Maggie’s man-friend at a comedy club. Whore. All but Maggie go out for drinks, and they can’t even get their order in before starting up their needless antagonism. Kerri hates the Upper East Side, forgetting that she was cast on this show entirely to evoke the Upper East Side. Chantal orders a Pinot Noir, and impresses her peers by making a fuss with the waitress about not liking wines from Oregon. Amy dares to order the lychee martini, which sends Angela into a rage of “that’s so five years ago.” [From this, a picture begins to emerge: five years ago, Angela was an 18-year-old NYU student slash model slash aspiring photographer drinking lychee martinis. Fuck everything about that. -Ed.]

If Angela paid more attention to her gays, she’d know better than to hate on lychee martinis.

Kerri leaves early without paying for her drinks, as she has better things to do with her time. Donning a coat with a hunchback, she heads to Teterboro Airport to curate some bagels.

The everything bagel—or, following Adorno, the 'gesamtkunstbagel'—evokes an oneiric, emphatically liminal state of post-human awareness.

Halfway through the episode, Chantal gets a new-and-improved flapper-esque haircut to go with her given name and brutalist makeup regimen. This completely ruins the chronology of the episode, with a different hair length in each scene. At one point, while the End of Century trio discuss their budget post-haircut, what seems to be a long-haired Ghost of Chantal Past gives confessional commentary.

Then again, we didn’t need a psychic to tell us that this gallery was in trouble either.

Claudia remedies the situation by ordering some Frenchmen from gallery owner Stephen Stoyanov. She describes her sales approach as “just, like, know your shit basically” which falls apart when she sells represented artist Lauren Luloff’s work as “literally creat[ing] texture” with a “canvas-fabric hybrid.” This is why there is no art on this show.

Towards the end of the episode we’re treated to some Eli/Maggie filler. Eli, in possibly his best alpha-dick power move yet, asks Maggie to bring her boyfriend a pizza for him. Maggie reveals that her boyfriend Ryan is a New York-hating country boy whose simplistic palate can’t handle delicacies like pizza. Eli acts surprised, and thinks better of his follow-up line about needing extra sausage. He then buys her another drink.

The rest of the show revolves around Angela’s “I missed middle school health class but my biological clock is ticking” sexuality. The topic is first brought up while sitting with the End of Century girls eating mac and cheese at a bar with exactly three seats open. While lamenting the lack of boys for her to not date, Magical Elves sends over a set of three handsome chaps. This stops sounding like a Hans Christian Andersen teen drama when one of the boys proclaims “it’s Asian month” and starts a food fight with Angela. Of course Chantal (who was out of view to the boys before they sat down) and Lara (who doesn’t think being on TV merits washing your hair) think the boys are hitting on them.  Angela, afraid of losing her status as least tactful in the room, shouts “I feel like we’re being raped right now.”

Later on, Angela summons her gays for an evening of self-indulgence at a Union Square bar. While discussing her “plight as a single woman” to a group of people who could not at the time legally marry, she talks about how she just wants a hot, rich Australian or maybe Brit to immediately settle down with her (without dating of course) and complains that not enough hot, rich Australians and Brits have penetrated her wall of gays and cocoon of chiffon. She finds herself spiritually adrift without anyone to send mixed signals of apathy and entitlement to. At least she doesn’t deal with Brooklyn boys anymore; they’re all poor and have STDs. Then again, they don’t call mac and cheese ‘Bechamel’, either.

The gays stop coddling her for two seconds when she tells them that she’s never had an orgasm, and she fears that the security blanket she’s woven from them might fall apart. After all, Angela tells us, “homosexual men are a very important part of a woman’s self-esteem.” That sounds like something someone would say on Sex and the City, right? Right. Better say it. Her bullshit is cut short when the producers feel bad for her and send her table a round of shots.

Angela: “Am I going to get laid in this?” Gay: “No.”

Next time on Gallery Girls: We’re not really sure; it’s getting harder to tell where Gallery Girls stops and Real Housewives of New Jersey begins.

  • http://www.facebook.com/michael.greathouse.315 Michael Greathouse

    This is why most of America thinks that the “art world” is full of spoiled, shallow narcissists. And they are right.

  • http://twitter.com/_brendancarroll Brendan Carroll

    Genius: “where Gallery Girls stops and Real Housewives of New Jersey begins.”

  • http://www.facebook.com/Stevegetchell Knuckle Head

    I read the first paragraph hoping for satire, but found none, so I stopped reading. This show deserves no extra publicity.

  • Nancie Mills Pipgras

    Boring. Not you, Art Fag.

  • http://twitter.com/upierrenoel Uri Pierre Noel

    I just read Paddy’s reviews. No point in actually watching it.

    • http://www.artfagcity.com Paddy Johnson

      Actually, these are written by Ben McCauley, not me.

  • AveryLeider

    I love Gallery Girls ! I love even better Ben Macaulay’s review of it! I taped the show and had to go back and play it again to laugh at Chantel’s hair length! This is better than the History Channel !

  • Rachel Wallace

    Just an FYI, LBGT couples can marry in NYC.

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