For ten years contemporary art filmmakers Wet Heat Project captured the roller-coaster journey of ambitious young conceptual artist Bert Rodriguez, pushing beyond his hometown borders to penetrate an international art market. The result is an adventurous feature film about a uniquely focused personality, the transformative world of conceptual art in which he made his mark, and his carefully planned journey's end.
Appearing in this film with commentary on Rodriguez and the conceptual art experience include artist Marina Abramovic, artist Vito Acconci, artist Maria José Arjona, Deputy Chairman of Christie's Americas Amy Cappellazzo, C-Monster.net, Wall Street Journal art reporter Kelly Crow, New York Times reporter Susan Dominus, Whitney Biennial Curatorial Coordinator Stacey Goergen, artist Aramis Gutierrez, ARTnews Contributing Editor and Yale School of Art Senior Critic Steven Henry Madoff, clinical psychiatrist Dr. Scot McAfee, artist Manny Prieres, collector Andrew Reed, Art Production Fund Co-Founders Doreen Remen and Yvonne Force Villareal, New York Magazine Senior Art Critic Jerry Saltz, collectors Michael & Lisa Schweitzer, gallerist Fred Snitzer, and a selection of "therapy cube patients" from Rodriguez' Whitney Biennial installation / performance In the Beginning...
Operating a seamless white therapy cube at the Whitney Biennial, cooking a traditional Cuban meal with his mother in Seattle or Paris, or staging a futures-market scheme to pre-sell non-existent artwork every day for a month, Rodriguez' practice surprised himself as much as his viewers.
Left: Miami International Film Festival Director Jaie LaPlante, film director Bill Bilowit, artist Bert Rodriguez
Bottom Right: Miami International Film Festival premiere night at Miami's iconic Tower Theatre on Calle Ocho
Top Right: Film producer Grela Orihuela with artist Marina Abramovic, Core Club screening in New York
In-progress screenings of making sh*t up began with a hometown preview screening at the 2011 Miami International Film Festival to a sold-out Tower Theater. Later that year the preview was shown in at a members-only screening in New York's Core Club followed by the Miami Beach Cinematheque. The first west coast preview was screened November 16, 2011 at the West Hollywood Public Library, presented by the Los Angeles Art Association and its Director Peter Mays, followed that same week with a members-only screening at the Soho House West Hollywood.
The film is in new post-production and now includes the artist's resettlement and establishment in Los Angeles, leading up to a heartfelt demise several years later. His 1980-2016 legacy will be re-contextualized by the artist's creator, Norberto Rodriguez.
In 2019 making sh*t up will be completed and premiere with a genuine Hollywood ending an epic tale deserves.
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