William Pym went to the X-Initiative’s No Soul for Sale art jamboree and wrote about it for ArtForum’s Diary, Scene and Herd:
Without the cues, rules, and stakes of explicit commerce—space was supplied to exhibitors free of charge—amateur blunders were there for the making. “This was not supposed to be a performance,” Stefano Cernuschi from Mousse happily confided as we watched Ian Tweedy finish a photorealistic self-portrait on the wall. No one from the Milanese magazine saw the point in being too fussed over it.
With the absence of an ante, unheard of in New York, the majority of locals in attendance took a deliciously “whatever” stance. X-Initiative advisory board member Gabrielle Giattino was
mentally miles away, markedly more concerned with Kai Althoff and Brandon Stosuy’s elaborate show opening at her minuscule DISPATCH space in Chinatown on Sunday than with her “No Soul” display. “The rest of these haven’t come back from Basel yet,” she said, waving vaguely at the incomplete print portfolio leaning against the wall. She scrunched her brow for further explanation but could only manage a going-nowhere “you know” to express exactly how interested she is in the rigmarole of international capitalism. This is not how you hustle a client.
Whatever Works (Artforum.com/Scene & Herd)