good night, sleep tight, don’t let the bed bugs bite…

For the past month, my apartment has been invaded by bed bugs.  This is experience like none other and I would only wish it against my most deserving enemies.  We had to wash every piece of clothing we owned plus towels, bedding and dry cleaning all of our suits and dresses in the closet.  Please trust me when I say this was not an easy nor fun task; one evening I stayed at the laundromat until 4 AM driven by the enormous fear that one of our socks would harbor a new generation of bed bugs, just waiting to hatch.  (Wow did that gross you out to read as much as it grossed me out to write?) Now our clothes are living in ziploc and trash bags, couches have been dismantled, various tables dissected then placed upside down–the entire apartment is in a state of disarray.  Needless to say, I am afraid of coming home and getting bitten and for a while, I found it hard to fall asleep for fear of waking up with those nasty red welts dotting the pasty white canvas of my legs, feet, hands and arms (blame winter!) all over again.  Home does not feel like a home right now and so all I can do is fantasize about when we move into a brand-new, clean, bed bug-free apartment.  In this sick fantasy, the floors sparkle like the teeth of leading men in toothpaste commercials and I have access to a dishwasher, laundry machine and dryer all within the confines of my four walls.  (Damn Gina, I just re-read that sentence and realized how much the New York City real estate market screws your expectations.)  In this amazing new apartment, I no longer have to lug my grandma cart brimming with groceries up flights of stairs–why would I when I have a brand new elevator?  Also included in this ridiculously luxurious abode would be all the amazing art I’ve been salivating over for months.  Which brings me to my time waster for today: Jen Bekman’s 20 x 200.

Jen’s premise is so simple I can’t believe no one’s thought of it earlier: provide high quality art at prices normal people like you and I can afford.  Each week the project presents one new photo and one work on paper.  200 editions are available for $20 (hence the name), 500 for $50, 20 for $200 and so on.  I’ve found some of my favorite art there, including this Mike Monteiro print that I purchased last year:

You know, I was really hoping this wouldn’t apply to 2010, but I kind of think we’re already there.  Ok moving on.

Lush, sumptuous pieces by Rachel Sumpter have a kind of Biblical feel to them and if I had an extra $200 (the $20 version sold out quick), I’d break it out for this bad boy:

Tatsuro Kiuchi’s Photographer’s Dilemma would look so rad against a black wall.  It is just so hipster and I love it:

Last summer Kate Bingaman-Burt decided to document everything she bought over a few months.  But unlike most folks she turned it into art:

There’s something insanely nostalgic and sad about the following print, but I love everything Shaun Sundholm does.  Doesn’t this remind you of some lost Eden or forgotten time that you just can’t get back? Check it:

Through 20 x 200, I discovered Jorge Colombo and have become a huge fan of his work.  He uses the Brushes app on his iPhone to create stunning images of New York City and San Francisco.  I love his ability to bring out the Gotham City aspect of Manhattan, especially in the piece below.

Not sure I can stress enough how much I love the “three snaps in a z-formation” feeling that this photo conveys, but I’ll tell you what: artist Jessica Bruah has managed to capture an emotion every woman can identify with.

If you want to see more, check out 20 x 200 for yourself.  Sleep tight and don’t let those bed bugs bite.

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