Art Buzz: Hugo Boss Prize finalists & a musical shantytown in New Orleans

Hugo Boss Prize Finalists Announced: Six finalists including Danh Vo, Qiu Zhijie and Monika Sosnowska have been announced for this year’s Huge Boss prize, which awards a $100,000 grant as well as a dedicated exhibit at the Guggeinheim to innovators in the contemporary art scene. A winner won’t be announced until next fall, but the nomination alone is sure to launch the young artists into the spotlight, at least for the next twelve months.

Danny Lyon on Occupy Wall Street: Political photographer Danny Lyon is best known for his portraits of rebel culture (think burly bikers, tattooed prisoners and graffiti artists). Now, Lyon is lending his support to what he calls the “Occupy Rebellion.” In an interview with Phaidon, the photographer says that “Occupy unites us and makes us Americans…it is the nature of Occupy that to suffer in public in a tent city, to stand by and wave a sign, to make a button, write a blog, to join it, is a victory.”

Ellsworth Kelly’s Softer Side: Ellsworth Kelly became famous for razor-sharp renderings of geometric slashes and shapes during the messy, paint-splattered heyday of Jackson Pollock and Willem de Kooning. A new retrospective of his work, which includes a comparatively “soft” series of wood sculptures, is now on view at Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts.

Disney, Before Mickey: It’s hard to imagine Walt Disney without Mickey, but this year, a series of old sketches predating the big-eared mouse have come onto the market, all of which are expected to fetch between 35 – 50k at auction. Also available is an early short featuring Oswald the Lucky Rabbit, a Mickey-like prototype that Disney originally designed for Universal Pictures.

A “Shantytown Sound Labratory”: A new installation in New Orleans called “The Music Box” invites visitors to wander through a ramshackle building and play the various instruments that are built into the walls, floors and ceilings. The installation is meant to be a small-scale test for an even larger project called Dithyrambalina.