Ruiz-Healy Art presents a solo exhibition by Johanna Calle – San Antonio, TX -11.05.2017-24.06.2017 – 11556

Johanna Calle, Sin título (rejillas) – Antiquus Editores, Bogotá, Colombia – 2/20, serigraph, 2/20 12.25 x 12.25″ Framed.

Ruiz-Healy Art presents a solo exhibition highlighting work by internationally renowned artist Johanna Calle.

Born in Bogotá, Colombia, Calle gracefully investigates lines with a preference for a black and white palette. Her exploration of drawing and pushing the medium into a wide variety of techniques are at the heart of her formal practice. Her method of line making is that of a physical approach–one that includes wire, stitching, text, along with the more traditional use of ink and pencil. The artist is contently expanding and reconfiguring the very idea of a line and mark making.
Continue reading “Ruiz-Healy Art presents a solo exhibition by Johanna Calle – San Antonio, TX -11.05.2017-24.06.2017 – 11556”

Joan B. Mirviss Ltd. presents works by Takegoshi Jun and Nakamura Takuo – New York – 02.05.2017-07.06.2017 – 11555

Takegoshi Jun, Square vessel with sloped shoulders depicting scenes of Japanese crested ibises, 2017. Porcelain with polychrome kutani enamel glazes, 10 1/4 x 9 1/4 x 9 in

The first-ever joint exhibition of the two celebrated and innovative ceramic masters, Takegoshi Jun and Nakamura Takuo, both inspired by traditional kutani ware, opened at Joan B Mirviss LTD. Titled Beyond Kutani: Innovation in Color and Form, the much anticipated show will feature both functional and sculptural forms, all boldly decorated with polychrome under-glazing and overglaze enamels. Drawing from the traditional ko-kutani palette of emerald green, mustard yellow, peacock blue, brick red and eggplant purple (go-sai) that is further heightened with a vast array of colorful and metallic glazes derived from classical rinpa decorative traditions, these artists cover their white porcelain or white and red stoneware surfaces with designs based on ancient literature and painting with a strong to nod towards nature. Featuring over 40 new works created expressly for the occasion, this exhibition highlights these two ceramists’ unique and divergent aesthetics, both developed in response to time-honored kutani artistic traditions but cast in very contemporary modes.
Continue reading “Joan B. Mirviss Ltd. presents works by Takegoshi Jun and Nakamura Takuo – New York – 02.05.2017-07.06.2017 – 11555”

Exhibition of works by Stefan Kürten on view at NextLevel Galerie – Paris – 20.04.2017-03.06.2017 – 11554

Installation View Stefan Kuerten at NextLevel Galerie, 2017.

Stefan Kürten (born in 1963) deals precisely with this longing for a private refuge1 . Almost always, his works feature isolated buildings surrounded by strictly designed gardens or a wild, natural setting, guiding our gaze towards the only piece of architecture. By constantly avoiding the representation of people living in or near the house, he gives his subjects a feeling of neutrality, a subtle way of attracting our attention into his pictorial spaces, as it were. He does not try to tell a story that leaves viewers free to create their own stories by proceeding through associations of ideas. Thus, the intention is not to depict reality, but to evoke an idea of reality that offers each viewer the opportunity to imagine him- or herself in the picture, to get lost inside of it2.

Whether starting with his own photos or in his immediate environment, in books and magazines, Kürten’s paintings are artificially constructed, carefully composed, even if the places evoke a feeling of ‘déjà vu’, these architectures and places do not exist as such in reality.

Kürten depict environments which are not evoking those that one aspires or tries to create – a perfect place to live – a house as a symbol of our dreams and hopes, to modernist architecture close to the Bauhaus style or “Prairie houses“ by Frank Lloyd Wright, whose German and American culture Kürten is familiar with.

However to look better, a break point made itself felt. The indeterminacy of the sources of light casting improbable shadows or unrelated reflections provokes strangeness in these idyllic scenes. The parts are becoming dark and enlightened and vice versa; Paintings look like a negative-photo in colour damaged by time (even here the colours are not affected).

Technically, Stefan Kürten always begins his paintings – on canvas or on paper – with a layer of gold-coloured paint and proceeds by successive overlays: On this preliminary layer, he draws his subject in a very detailed way with sepia ink and then returns to acrylic by fine and successive touches. Thus, it springs from his compositions on a gold background, giving the colours that cover them a discoloured aspect, an indefinable and eerie light.

Kürten clearly refers in his work to the concept that is both artistic and, above all, literary, which developed by Freud3 of the ‘Unheimlich’, and we can translate in English by the “uncanny“4 (Which suddenly disturbs the most ordinary and innocent situations). Here, the house as the bearer of the ‘Unheimlich’, but whose the connection appears to be strictly speaking in our imagination by mentally linking its pictorial spaces with the possible events they induce5. Continue reading “Exhibition of works by Stefan Kürten on view at NextLevel Galerie – Paris – 20.04.2017-03.06.2017 – 11554”

Lisson Gallery presents exhibition of new paintings on paper by Carmen Herrera – New York – 03.05.2017-10.06.2017 – 11553

Carmen Herrera, Untitled, 2015. Acrylic and pencil on paper, 24 3/4 x 36 1/2 inches, 63 x 92.7 cm © Carmen Herrera; Courtesy Lisson Gallery.

Lisson Gallery presents new paintings on paper by Carmen Herrera as the second exhibition in the newest location at 138 Tenth Avenue in New York. The exhibition features eleven works, all painted within the past six years.

Drawing lies at the core of Herrera’s practice, wherein she uses arithmetic guidelines and careful calculations on tracing paper to create a meticulous framework. Expressed through basic geometric shapes, Herrera seeks to create a balanced relationship between compositional variables. Realized in a striking opposition of symmetrical or asymmetrical form, these preparatory structures are then translated on to larger paper and the chosen colors applied within the determined planes.

In recent works, Herrera continues to introduce novel juxtapositions of forms and line, while further exploring the role of color in her work. Over the past few years, Herrera has focused on primary colors, along with green, orange, and especially black. Often Herrera has made use of a single color against the raw white paper to create special tension, but in many of the works on view, Herrera fills each of the dimensions with acrylic paint to create bold geometrical structures.

To coincide with the exhibition of new works on paper, Lisson Gallery will present early paintings by the artist from her time in Paris in the late 1940s at TEFAF New York (May 4 – 8, 2017). Herrera’s paintings were recently the subject of a large-scale survey, Lines of Sight at The Whitney Museum of American Art (September 2016 – January 2017), which traveled to The Wexner Center for the Arts in Columbus, Ohio (February – April 2017). Continue reading “Lisson Gallery presents exhibition of new paintings on paper by Carmen Herrera – New York – 03.05.2017-10.06.2017 – 11553”

Exhibition of new paintings by Canadian artist Dil Hildebrand at C24 Gallery – New York – 02.05.2017-30.06.2017 – 11552

The Wind Bloweth, 2017, Acrylic, nylon fibre and sand on acrylic panel in wood frame. 71 x 50in. (180.3 x 127cm).

C24 Gallery presents Lorem Ipsum, an exhibition of new paintings by Canadian artist Dil Hildebrand. This is Dil Hildebrand’s first solo exhibition in New York. Lorem Ipsum showcases paintings and collage that highlight the artist’s distinctive working process in which he examines space and surface. The exhibition is on view May 2 – June 30, 2017.

Dil Hildebrand’s new body of work focuses on spatial concepts of design, the construction of image, and the mechanics of representation in art. His work is informed and influenced by a diversity of references and methods, including modernist strategies of fragmentation and re-composition, pictorial tropes of Western art and theatre, and post – modernist architecture. Layered panels follow a consistent color palette throughout the work, playing with distortion, and depth of field. In Lorem Ipsum, Hildebrand’s paintings deliberately move away from the austerity of the Cartesian aesthetic to create broader, stylistic movement in space, transcending two-dimensionality and blurring the lines between spatial representation and abstraction.

Drawing from experience in scenic painting for theatre, Hildebrand employs the techniques of illusion used in set design. In Lorem Ipsum, his highly stylized brush strokes mixed with collage and layering of acrylic panels, produce the experience of post-modern architectural form. Through the use of materials such as nylon flocking, which is a material commonly found in wallpaper, sand, resin and acrylic paint, the highly physical surfaces create a sense of deep pictorial space. The resulting images frame the body of the viewer in life-sized patterns that imitate the grandeur of structural design.

Frameworks and passageways are important motifs to Hildebrand’s work. Windows are leitmotifs of architectural patterning, ordering the way we think and move through the world; they represent the intersections of movement between states of being. Charged with neurosis and rich with history, the architectural image acts as both a map and a record of physical and psychological experience. In this way, the actual frame of Hildebrand’s paintings act as a window or portal. As if looking through a doorway, the eye rises and falls traveling through the bold shapes and colors of the panels. The result is a transcendent experience that both architectonic spaces and Hildebrand’s paintings share: a compulsory recognition of the present. Continue reading “Exhibition of new paintings by Canadian artist Dil Hildebrand at C24 Gallery – New York – 02.05.2017-30.06.2017 – 11552”

Galerie Max Hetzler exhibits ceremonial masks and wooden sculpture – Berlin – 28.04.2017- 03.06.2017 – 11551

Spirits and Ancestors, Ethnographic art curated by Jonathan Hope, Installation view, Galerie Max Hetzler Berlin, 2017. Photo: Courtesy Jonathan Hope and Galerie Max Hetzler Berlin I Paris.

Galerie Max Hetzler presents the exhibition Spirits and Ancestors, curated by Jonathan Hope in Bleibtreustrasse 45.

Jonathan Hope’s exhibition demonstrates an eclectic vision. On show are animist artefacts in the form of ceremonial masks and wooden sculpture made by the traditional communities of many different geographical regions, from the Himalayas to South America and Africa. The exhibits inform us of a surprising universality amongst these cultures. There is always a reverence for nature and the ever-present ancestors.

The two large and striking figures from Borneo (Kalimantan) were made by distinctly different ethnic groups, as their contrasting styles demonstrate. One male figure holds a sword and bears the form of a crocodile on his back. The other stands with out-stretched arms gazing into the far distance, imbued with a timeless serenity. Elsewhere, a diverse group of masks includes a ghostly, bearded example from the Lega of DRC and several astonishing works from rural Nepal. The example from the Mapuche Indians of Chile would have been worn by a young man engaged in a game similar to hockey. The three limbed simian figure from Tanzania is unusually kinetic and appears to be leaping from its stand. Each artefact has been chosen both for its aesthetic qualities and for the story it tells.

Jonathan Hope has spent a lifetime travelling, collecting and researching. He recently curated an exhibition of Indian and Indonesian textiles, “Heirlooms”, at the Edinburgh International Festival, which was critically acclaimed. As a dealer, he works privately from London, by appointment, and includes several major museums among his regular clients. Over the past two decades he has exhibited at Parcours des Mondes in Paris and several other international art events. Jonathan also lectures, most recently at the School of Oriental and African Studies in London and has published a number of articles, mostly for Hali magazine of which he is a contributing editor.

Website : Galerie Max Hetzler
Source : Artdaily

Hamiltons presents an exhibition of the most recent work by Australian photographer Murray Fredericks – London – 28.04.2017-14.06.2017 – 11550

Mirror 13, 2017 © Murray Fredericks.

Hamiltons presents Salt: Vanity, an exhibition of the most recent work by Australian photographer Murray Fredericks. The Vanity series is a continuation of Fredericks’ renowned Salt series, previously exhibited at Hamiltons in Salt, 2007, Salt II, 2009 and Recent Work, 2014 – 2015. In this next cycle of the project, Fredericks introduces a mirror into the previously undisturbed landscape.

Australian photographer Murray Fredericks’ long relationship with Lake Eyre, where his most recent series Vanity has been produced, commenced in 2003, and to date consists of twenty journeys to the centre of the lake where he photographs for weeks at a time in the vast and infinite landscape. Fredericks is not interested in documenting the literal forms of the landscape. He views the landscape as medium in itself which, when represented in a photograph, has the potential to convey the emotional quality of his experience and relationship to the lake.

Fredericks’ relationship to this project stems from his initial visit to a salt lake in 2001 where late one night he wandered away from his campsite and stopped for some time. Standing alone in the darkness he became aware that the boundary between his physical body and the environment he stood within seemed to soften and become less defined. Fredericks experienced an unfamiliar, powerful sensation of calm and eventually a release from the ever-present anxieties that seem to be inherent to the human condition. In that moment, Fredericks felt a connection to something that seemed to exist beyond his conscious mind. The memory of that experience stayed with Fredericks and defined his pursuit of landscape imagery. Continue reading “Hamiltons presents an exhibition of the most recent work by Australian photographer Murray Fredericks – London – 28.04.2017-14.06.2017 – 11550”

Rosenberg & Co. presents group exhibition of twentieth-century British artists – New York – 29.04.2017-21.07.2017 – 11549

Frank Dobson, Two Women, 1943. Mixed media on paper, 12.25 x 16 in.

Rosenberg & Co. is presenting British Modern Masters, a historical group exhibition offering a selective survey of twentieth-century British art.

The cost of war measured in human pain and loss as well as economic devastation, and a waning British Empire combined with new questions of European security set the stage for a complex and significant shift in British artistic movements. The post-war generation of British artists found a unique voice anchored in the Neo-Romantic movement, fed by new purity of form, and reaching for abstract thought. This development was never independent of its historical context and antecedents or free from other artists and adjacent creative movements. It was, however, a unique confluence of events and circumstances, melding brutal events to everlasting optimism and intellectual aspirations. From studies of the human figure in urban or industrial life to honoring form as a pure subject, British Modern art was a vibrant and rich universe of staggering creativity.

British Modern Masters is an intrinsically flawed label. It is usually used to describe a diverse group of artists working in Great Britain from and after World War II through the Sixties. One could easily argue with the designation, or the dates, or that there was any commonality among the artists, or as to who should or should not be included under that umbrella. One cannot argue, however, with the indisputable flourishing of creativity, the significant influence, the continuing legacy, and the unique objects of beauty that emerged during that time.

The exhibition continues the tradition of Paul Rosenberg & Co. who represented several of the artists, including: Kenneth Armitage, Donald Hamilton Fraser, Peter Kinley, Bernard Meadows, and Graham Sutherland. British Modern Masters does not pretend to be an all-encompassing survey of works from the period, but brings renewed attention to many British artists, some now legends of the art historical canon. This exhibition could not have happened without the guidance and collaboration of our friends at Osborne Samuel in London.

Website : Rosenberg & Co.
Source : Artdaily

Exhibition at White Cube brings together works from Larry Bell’s extensive career – 28.04.2017-18.06.2017 – 11548

Larry Bell, ‘6 x 6 An Improvisation’, Chinati, Marfa, Texas, October 2014 – July 2015. Mixed media, 112 5/8 x 55 11/16 x 4 in. (286.1 x 141.5 x 10.1 cm) © Larry Bell. Photo © Alex Marks, 2014 Courtesy Chinati Foundation.

White Cube is presenting an exhibition by Larry Bell in the South Galleries at Bermondsey. This exhibition brings together works from Bell’s extensive career, from early paintings and works on paper to recent collages, centring on the large-scale installation 6 x 6 An Improvisation (1989-2014), Bell’s largest standing wall work to date.

Since 1968, Bell has been developing his series of freestanding glass wall sculptures in varying scales and configurations. 6 x 6 An Improvisation is the culmination of this series. First shown at the Chinati Foundation in Marfa, Texas in 2014, it consists of 40 panels, each measuring 72 x 72 inches or approximately 6ft square, a measurement relational to the artist’s own height. Bell has reconfigured the panels for White Cube Bermondsey, creating what he terms an ‘Improvisation’, combining clear glass, grey glass and glass coated with Inconel (a nickel/chrome alloy) which results in it becoming, to variable degrees, reflective. Arranged in right angle pairs, some that are inverted or doubled up, the sculpture forms a labyrinthine series of spaces that reflect and refract the interior architecture of the gallery. Highly dramatic and visually complex, 6 x 6 An Improvisation subverts the viewer’s spatial comprehension through a layered convergence of hues and densities, while maintaining an illusion of volume.

Commenting on the series of freestanding wall works as a whole, Bell has said: ‘In some cases, it’s highly reflective where the glass parts come together; in others it is highly reflective where the glass touches the floor, and so on. And I like the idea of being able to just combine these things so they’d stand up, since the parts were all the same size. They balance in the weight of their own vertical thrust, and are anchored to the floor with glue, and equally bound together by glue. So they hold each other up, and I could change it any way I want. So there was a lot of versatility. That gives a certain kind of symmetry to the relationship of the reflective coatings to each other. I’m trying to say that symmetry comes from the relationship of the distance between the parts being half the width of the part.’ Continue reading “Exhibition at White Cube brings together works from Larry Bell’s extensive career – 28.04.2017-18.06.2017 – 11548”

First ever US installation of Nancy Spero’s sculpture “Maypole: Take No Prisoners” on view in New York – 28.04.2017-17.06.2017 – 11547

Nancy Spero, Maypole: Take No Prisoners, 2007. Handprinting on aluminum, ribbon, steel chain, and aluminum pole with steel base Variable dimensions.

Galerie Lelong is presenting the first ever US installation of Nancy Spero’s large-scale, three-dimensional sculpture Maypole: Take No Prisoners. Initially created for the grand entryway of the 52nd Biennale di Venezia in 2007, Maypole: Take No Prisoners provokes critical discussion about the cyclical nature of history, war, and its victims. Lelong’s smaller gallery room features an early inspiration for the Maypole sculpture, Kill Commies / Maypole (1967), alongside additional works on paper from The War Series, many of which have never been shown in New York.

Maypole: Take No Prisoners was Spero’s final major work before her death in 2009. It synthesizes several themes that Spero explored throughout her influential, 50-year career and embraces the productive coexistence of anger and celebration. As a familiar centerpiece of traditional folk festivals, the maypole is presented as a continuation of Spero’s interest in “victimage,” a term she coined to describe the transition from victim to protagonist. Over 200 decapitated heads, printed on cut aluminum and hanging from ribbons and metal chains, carry expressions of emotional anguish. Many are derived from elements of drawings from Spero’s The War Series (1966-70), a body of work that confronts the dehumanizing horrors of the Vietnam War. The imagery of the sculpture directly references the war because, as Spero wrote: “In the 60’s in Vietnam they would cut off heads from corpses and put them on poles.” Created during the Iraq War, Maypole draws a direct line between the two wars that unfolded during her lifetime while calling for a broader examination of the universality of war as a tool for oppression. While considering the violent atrocities taking place decades after Vietnam, she angrily stated: “It’s absolutely the same, damn it.” Continue reading “First ever US installation of Nancy Spero’s sculpture “Maypole: Take No Prisoners” on view in New York – 28.04.2017-17.06.2017 – 11547″

Lisson Gallery presents the work of Susan Hiller for the first time at its main gallery space in New York – 28.04.2017-10.06.2017 – 11546

Susan Hiller, First Aid: Homage to Joseph Beuys, 1969-2017. 13 vintage wooden first aid boxes, felt-lined, with 86 vintage bottles containing water from holy wells, sacred streams, etc., collected by the artist from around the world; some boxes contain vintage medical supplies. 61 3/8 x 74 inches (156 x 188 cm) © Susan Hiller; Courtesy Lisson Gallery

Lisson Gallery is presenting the work of Susan Hiller for the first time at its main gallery space in New York. The exhibition includes a selection of work from over four decades of her career focusing on themes to which she has often returned, encapsulated in the title ‘Paraconceptual,’ which sites her work “just sideways of conceptualism and neighboring the paranormal.”

Hiller has committed her practice to examining the cultural undercurrrents of society and its belief systems. Using a method she describes as “a kind of archaeological investigation, uncovering something to make a different kind of sense of it,” Hiller probes the unseen, unheard, unspoken and unexplained, and in the process has explored subjects such as lost languages, telepathy, dreams and automatic writing. The exhibition in New York includes the multi-channel video installation Psi Girls (1999), two rare and rarely seen paintings from the 1980s, new aura photo-portraits, a recent installation of holy water medicine cabinets from her ongoing Homage to Joseph Beuys series and a sculptural work on automatic writing, Homage to Gertrude Stein: Lucidity and Intuition (2011).

In Psi Girls, clips from five movies show adolescent girls performing telekinetic feats. Over five large screens the girls exercise their fierce and concentrated gaze to move objects by thought alone. Each part is tinted a different color and is at first silent, then joined halfway through by the pulsating, seductive rhythm of a gospel choir. The effect is unsettling; the soundtrack draws us into a dream-like daze, a suspension of disbelief, only to suddenly shock us into distanced scrutiny by the loud ‘white noise’ of a blank television screen. Then the sequence repeats itself, each scene now on a different part of the wall and in a different fluorescent hue. Continue reading “Lisson Gallery presents the work of Susan Hiller for the first time at its main gallery space in New York – 28.04.2017-10.06.2017 – 11546”

Ben Brown Fine Arts presents first solo exhibition by LA-based artist Awol Erizku in Europe – London – 20.04.2017-02.06.2017 – 11545

Awol Erizku, When You See Too Much, You See Nothing, 2016. Photo by Joshua White. © the Artist, Courtesy Ben Brown Fine Arts, London.

Ben Brown Fine Arts is presenting Make America Great Again, the first solo exhibition by LA-based artist Awol Erizku in Europe. Make America Great Again marks a departure from Erizku’s photographic work, bringing together new sculptures and paintings as well as a ‘conceptual mix-tape’ produced specifically for the exhibition.

Taking key political symbols and historical iconography whilst sampling from the urban fabric of his surroundings, Erizku combines ‘high-art’ references, such as the notion of the ‘ready-made’, with popular culture.

Central to the exhibition is HOW THAT MAKE YOU FEEL? (2017), a silkscreened American flag with a black panther printed heavily across the stars and stripes. Requiring no translation, the work stems directly from what the artist describes as the current ‘political turmoil’ and the atmosphere of ‘racism and bigotry’ that he feels has aggressively resurfaced in the US.

Through a combination of assemblage and sound, Erizku re-appropriates what can at first appear as mundane. Writing or symbols painted illicitly on a wall in the street become emblems of a political struggle in works such as Wave Brake (2017) and Wish the Worst (2017). Street slang is translated directly onto plywood or corrugated metal in order to preserve the immediacy of such a form of expression. Spray-painted ’12’ numbers, slang for the police, become frighteningly potent when repeated over and over, themselves forming an inescapable part of the environment.

Throughout Make America Great Again, Erizku plays with the sense of creation and destruction and assimilates a diverse range of forms and colours. Blocks of heavy colour on corrugated metal evoke the endless cycle of street artists layering paint over myriad images hidden underneath, in the piece Their Eyes Were Watching God (2017), Nefertiti’s plaster bust recalls a lost ancient civilisation repurposed for the current era, in the work Tunnel Vision (2017), a once pristine white picket fence – now a charged political symbol – becomes a metaphor for brutal division as red paint appears to bleed across it.

Adopting the political slogan that originated with the Ronald Reagan presidential campaign of 1980 but is more recently associated with the current US president’s 2016 campaign, the exhibition ‘Make America Great Again’, offers a commentary on ideas of politics and power as well as identity and belonging.

Website : Ben Brown Fine Arts
Source : Artdaily

Comprehensive solo-show presenting new works by Leiko Ikemura at Galerie Karsten Greve – Cologne – 21.04.2017-17.06.2017 – 11544

Leiko Ikemura, Haruko. © Leiko Ikemura und Galerie Karsten GreveCourtesy Galerie Karsten Greve. Photo: Jörg von Bruchhausen.

Galerie Karsten Greve announces the exhibition Woman of Fire Dancing with Tree, a comprehensive solo-show presenting new works by Leiko Ikemura. The exhibition, is staged in celebration of the 30-year collaboration between Karsten Greve and the artist, which began with a solo-show in 1987 in the gallery’s former exhibition space located at Wallrafplatz in Cologne. A publication with texts by Dr. Katharina Winnekes and Dr. Barbara J. Scheuermann will accompany the exhibition.

The plethora of media in which Leiko Ikemura’s oeuvre expresses itself encompasses painting, sculpture and drawing as artistic genres. Its motifs, mainly centered on themes of embodiment and transformation, reflect both the artist’s formal autonomy as well as flexible dexterities and artistic skillset. In her fairytale scenarios, evocative of a dream-like sensibility and inhabited by hybrid creatures, cats, birds and girls merge while humanoid figures and landscape formations amalgamate, telling of metamorphosis and mutations.

Shapes are often merely alluded to and not fully fleshed out, only rendering themselves visible in their entirety upon intent study, then dissipating at a breath of wind. Hazy wafts of mist conciliate bodies of water with mountainous vistas, dissolve the horizon and then condense into faces appearing abruptly like a chimaera. Akin to a figure-ground illusion, the curvature of the river bend is also the outline of a graciously swung body. Figurines turn into ghostly entities, manifestations of nature in its most intrinsic form. Floating, disembodied heads with hair ablaze in flames, emblematic of the element fire – or perhaps the embodiment of a petulant force of nature – appear at times gentle and alternatingly tumultuous (Floating Storm, Haruko). In Ikemura’s Trees series, a typology of temperament in which the crowns of the trees are in either a hottempered, sanguine turmoil or a state of downtrodden melancholia, the trees reveal themselves as manifold variations of individual personalities. Occasionally the gold dust embellishment of the surface suggests a reference to alchemy, a tenet primarily concerned with the transfer of energy in the transmutation of base metals into gold and silver.

Ikemura’s cosmology of flux and transformation follows a pantheistic worldview, according to which god is inherent in all things. Plato had defined this omnipresent world-soul as “self-moving motion”. In the context of a cosmic framework but also within the individual, the soul is the origin of life, liaising between the mind and body, between being and becoming. As the ultimate impetus for creation, it transmutes inanimate matter into living creatures; a piercing creative energy that brings with it change, conforming to the cosmological law defined by Heraclitus in the Panta Rhei formula as eternal flow: “All entities move and nothing remains still”. Continue reading “Comprehensive solo-show presenting new works by Leiko Ikemura at Galerie Karsten Greve – Cologne – 21.04.2017-17.06.2017 – 11544”

Bernard Jacobson Gallery presents exhibition of master works by Sam Francis – London – 21.04.2017-27.05.2017 – 11543

Sam Francis, Evergreen Licks, 1987. Acrylic on canvas, 152 x 183 cm. Courtesy Bernard Jacobson Gallery.

Bernard Jacobson Gallery announced a new exhibition of master works by the renowned Californian artist, Sam Francis, widely considered one of the most important artists of the post-war era. The exhibition is an opportunity to see work from the beginning of his artistic career in the early 50s though to his death in the early 90s, including both large scale works on canvas and more intimate studies on paper.

The gallery has enjoyed a long working association with Francis, beginning with a friendship between Francis and Jacobson dating back to the 1980s. This close working relationship has resulted in significant exhibitions by Francis with the gallery over the subsequent years and Bernard is considered a leading expert on the artist’s work.

This exhibition features a wealth of early works, including a monochromatic work on paper; Untitled (1950), created with ink wash in a subtle, reduced palette of washed-out greys which was typical of Francis’ approach during this period. He had moved to Paris in 1950 to study art at Fernand Leger’s Academy and the influence of the wintry Paris light is clearly visible – so very different from his native California. Francis’ life-long interest in portraying the essential ‘matter’ of light had begun while in hospital in California, recovering from severe injuries sustained as a fighter pilot during World War II. Untitled (1950) is evocative both of his Paris experience but also of a memory of light from his war-time convalescence and long hours spent in the observation of the ‘dancing’ play of light on the ceiling above his hospital bed. Continue reading “Bernard Jacobson Gallery presents exhibition of master works by Sam Francis – London – 21.04.2017-27.05.2017 – 11543”

An-My Lê’s first exhibition in France on view at Marian Goodman Gallery – Paris – 20.04.2017-27.05.2017 – 11542

Installation view. Photo: © Rebecca Fanuele. Courtesy An-My Lê and Marian Goodman Gallery.

Marian Goodman Gallery Paris is presenting the first exhibition of An-My Lê’s work in France. Born in Saigon in 1960, as a child, An-My Lê spent several years in Paris, a city where her parents had lived and were married in the late 1950s. In 1975, in the wake of the war, her family left Vietnam permanently and emigrated to the United States. In the mid-1980s, she worked in France as a photographer for the Compagnons du Devoir. Over the course of four years, she documented architectural restorations and inventoried historical monuments, just as Eugène Atget had done in his time. This seminal experience, along with the artist’s personal history, influenced her deeply humanist oeuvre. “I aspire to achieve a certain lyrical objectivity. It is more about patterns of behavior than the specificity of it, which perhaps allows for a larger understanding of history and culture.”

For her first solo exhibition in Paris, An-My Lê presents The Silent General, a collection of new color photographs, first unveiled a few weeks ago at the Whitney Biennale in New York (on view until June 11, 2017). She is also showing black-and-white images from earlier series, including Viêt Nam, Small Wars, and 29 Palms.

An-My Lê’s latest project, The Silent General, takes its title from a fragment of Walt Whitman’s Specimen Days which is devoted to the American general and statesman Ulysses S. Grant. In this poetic autobiographical narrative, written in 1882, which blends personal history and national events, the author sets down his memories of the Civil War era (1861–65). The seven photographs made over the past two years in various places near or in New Orleans, Louisiana, are evocative of Whitman’s essay. The images are the result of the observation of different aspects of contemporary life in the South. However, in contrast to the photojournalist aesthetic always in close proximity to the subject, Lê keeps a distance, following the tradition of nineteenth-century landscape photography. Allusions to the past are woven into the scenery: the film set whose action unfolds against the backdrop of a famous Civil War battle, or a statue commemorating a Confederate army general. Other pictures represent archetypal motifs from American Southern history and heritage, such as a sugar cane field, churchgoers leaving the service, or anonymous laborers at work. The Silent General reveals just how much history continues to mark the territory and the people who inhabit it, and neatly encapsulates An-My Lê’s ambition: “Instead of seeking the real, I began to ground the imaginary. The landscape genre or the description of people’s activity in the landscape lent itself well to this way of thinking.” Continue reading “An-My Lê’s first exhibition in France on view at Marian Goodman Gallery – Paris – 20.04.2017-27.05.2017 – 11542”

Almine Rech Gallery presents exhibition of works by Ha Chong-Hyun – Paris – 22.04.2017-03.06.2017 – 11541

Almine Rech Gallery opens exhibition of works by Ha Chong-Hyun

In 1972, Ha Chong-Hyun made a small sculpture, which appears on its own as if anticipating his subsequent work as a painter. It consists of a hemp rope stretched across a wooden box so tightly that a few unraveling strands threaten to break the entire cordage. Extremely effective, the composition is as simple as its material is banal. An image of great tension and resistance, it epitomizes the artist’s practice and further announces his Conjunctions, a lifelong series of paintings, which was initiated in 1974 and is still ongoing to this day.

Ha Chong-Hyun turned to abstraction in the early 1960s, belonging to the first generation of Korean artists who embraced this aesthetical direction. While he first approached it by applying heavy materials onto canvases, his way of structuring the pictorial space was also close to that of European Informel[1]. He then continued his investigation by painting geometrical and polychromatic forms, which completely differed from the works he made initially. His nation’s traditional colors dominated in these new abstractions.

In the early 1970s, the artist made sculptures for a brief period, using “poor” materials in the spirit of the time: for example, he installed a pile of newspapers next to a pile of blank sheets of paper, or he set a wooden beam upright on a rope, which he then strained between two walls. The 1972 sculpture we mentioned earlier takes us back to A.G. (Avant Garde), a group cofounded by Ha Chong-Hyun, within which he played a prominent role. All these works inevitably bring to mind Western artists of the same generation or active during the same years: to mention just a few, those gathered around Arte Povera, Post-minimalism, Supports/Surfaces, who used similar processes. A.G. also coincides with Japanese Mono-ha, which emerged around the same time and shared many striking similarities[2]. All these movements coexisted, more or less related to one another, or completely independent from one another, if not ignorant of the others’ existence. In Korea like anywhere else, the Zeitgeist alone may as well explain these similar tendencies (to some extent at least). Continue reading “Almine Rech Gallery presents exhibition of works by Ha Chong-Hyun – Paris – 22.04.2017-03.06.2017 – 11541”

Works from Keith Sonnier’s new “Portal Series” on view at Häusler Contemporary – Zürich – 12.04.2017-17.06.2017 – 11537

Keith Sonnier, Patio Portal, 2013.

Häusler Contemporary Zürich is presenting works from Keith Sonnier’s new «Portal Series» together with selected early works that have rarely been shown in Europe. Our exhibition focuses on Sonnier’s examination of the relationship between sculpture and architectural space, and provides evidence of his creative engagement with a variety of different materials. These are the same parameters that have distinguished the artist’s work throughout his career and contributed to his position as a major Post Minimalist sculptor.

In Europe, Keith Sonnier is mainly known for his light works and installations. Thus it may come as a surprise that, in addition to recent and selected early light pieces, our exhibition includes sculptures made of wood and bamboo. in fact, these works seamlessly conform to Keith Sonnier’s very precise formal language, his examination of the sensual and emotional qualities of different material and his sculptural investigation of architectural space.

As the title implies, the theme of the «Portal Series» from 2013/2014 which we are presenting for the first time in Zurich is accessing architectural space. Wall pieces made with simple neon structures such as «Portal Wall» or «Patio Portal» suggest possible passages or openings, whereas «Portal Wall Extension» expands directly from the wall to the floor, becoming a freestanding portal. The works from the «Portal Series» that we present in our exhibition are remarkable in that they consist of a maximum of three to four neon tubes, always in the primary colors of red, yellow, and blue, and they all are characterized by clear horizontals, verticals, and 45 degree diagonals. A system of spatial coordinates with rounded protrusions sees to point in specific directions. These protrusions can also be read as elements that penetrate space, adding an erotic connotation to the pieces that is implicit in many of Sonnier’s works. Continue reading “Works from Keith Sonnier’s new “Portal Series” on view at Häusler Contemporary – Zürich – 12.04.2017-17.06.2017 – 11537″

Aurel Scheibler exhibits Öyvind Fahlström’s first variable sculpture Sitting…Blocks from 1965-66 – Berlin – 08.04.2017-24.06.2017 – 11535

Sitting…Blocks, 1965-1966. Tempera on vinyl and wood, 10 blocks, 38 x 38 x 38 cm (each).

Aurel Scheibler, in collaboration with The Öyvind Fahlström Foundation, presents the solo exhibition by Öyvind Fahlström (1928–1976) featuring his first variable sculpture, Sitting…Blocks from 1965-66. It is the first time this important work is presented in Germany since it was shown in 1968 at documenta IV in Kassel. A selection of his works from the 1960s and 1970s also are on view.

One of the most complex and extraordinary artists of his time, Öyvind Fahlström is regarded today as a pioneer of interactive multimedia art. Fahlström started his Sitting… series shortly after he moved to New York in 1961. It signifies a new period in Fahlström’s work in which he invented “variable painting” and began to express meanings and events solely with the use of abstract character-forms.

In the first work of the series, Sitting… (1962), Fahlström started using figurative elements and created a complex pictorial space in which many events happened at the same time, overlapping and influencing each other.

The subsequent work, Sitting…Six months later (1962) was Fahlström’s first variable painting. In these works, painted elements could be attached to a painted panel with magnets, string or inserted in slits in the panel. Theoretically, they could be arranged in any configuration. Continue reading “Aurel Scheibler exhibits Öyvind Fahlström’s first variable sculpture Sitting…Blocks from 1965-66 – Berlin – 08.04.2017-24.06.2017 – 11535”

Exhibition at South London Gallery brings together works by Erik van Lieshout – London – 07.04.2017-11.06.2017 – 11531

Erik van Lieshout, Untitled, 2012. Mixed media on paper, 29.7 x 42 cm. Part of Ministry of Subculture, 2012. Collection de Bruin-Heijn. Photo Jhoeko. © Erik van Lieshout.

Erik van Lieshout’s work explores themes often rooted in his experience of living and working in the Netherlands but nevertheless relevant to contemporary experience across Europe and beyond. For his solo show at the South London Gallery, Van Lieshout brings together works that draw on socio-political observations, marginalised identities and the role of the artist in society. An immersive architectural environment houses three video works characterised by an absurdist sense of humour and provocative questioning of the role of art and artists in society. All three works feature Van Lieshout, whose actions and statements blur performance with reality, dead-pan humour with utmost sincerity, and ambiguity of meaning with a sometimes disarming directness.

The Basement (2014), commissioned for the European biennial of contemporary art Manifesta 10 in St. Petersburg, documents Van Lieshout’s quest to improve the quality of life for the cats in the Hermitage Museum where there is a 200 year tradition of keeping cats in the basement to catch the mice. A short film documents his efforts as he cleans and paints their home, designs Modernist-inspired scratching posts, creates new climbing towers and installs artworks for their enjoyment. Interviews with the museum director, staff and the volunteers who look after the cats present a variety of perspectives on the situation, and the film is screened at the end of a make-shift tunnel daubed photocopies of cats, drawings and collages of political and other figures, and statements such as “What is a museum? A ‘shrine’ or a factory?” and “Free is boring. Problems we need”. Continue reading “Exhibition at South London Gallery brings together works by Erik van Lieshout – London – 07.04.2017-11.06.2017 – 11531”