Our international round-up of shows and events this week begins with a retrospective on the work of world-famous dancer, choreographer and collaborator Merce Cunningham – shown across two sites, at the Walker Art Center and MCA Chicago. Heading to New York, we highlight The Armory Show’s must-see sections, and back in Europe, we spend time with Mazzeloni as the gallery celebrates its 30th anniversary of showcasing and supporting 20th century Italian artists. Meanwhile, Sophia Al Maria reminds us of the pressing concerns of consumerism in Everything Must Go in Dubai.
1. Merce Cunningham, Common Time, Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, and MCA Chicago
Organised by the Walker Art Center, Common Time is major retrospective exhibition shown simultaneously at the Walker and MCA Chicago. As a seminal figure in modern dance, Merce Cunningham (1919-2009) revolutionised performance through his choreography, dance company and artistic collaborations with John Cage, Jasper Johns and Robert Rauschenberg. The show presents the choreographer’s multidisciplinary projects, exploring, as Cunningham described, the “underlying principle that music and dance and art could be separate entities independent and interdependent, sharing a common time.”
2. Sophia Al Maria, Everything Must Go, The Third Line, Dubai
A new presentation at The Third Line marks the first solo-exhibition by Sophia Al Maria in the United Arab Emirates. Everything Must Go is an iteration of Black Friday – the artist’s solo exhibition at The Whitney Museum of American Art in 2016 – and takes its name from a new series of work. For the show, Al Maria creates an immersive experience, capturing the chaotic, almost apocalyptic act of consuming, and the viewer is invited to experience illusions of order in underlying states of confusion and pandemonium.
3. The Armory Show 2017, New York
A highly anticipated art fair, The Armory Show returns to New York City this weekend. In 2017, the fair brings together over 200 influential galleries from 30 countries around the world. Five exhibitor sections guide visitors through two centuries of art history, from established masters to the next generation of emerging artists. Three notable platforms include Presents, a stage for young galleries no more than 10 years old; Focus, a programme that realises the vision of an annually appointed curator; and newcomer Platform, a place for large-scale artworks, installations and site-specific commissions.
4. Ai Weiwei, Tyre, Galerie Forsblom, Stockholm
Renowned Chinese artist and activist Ai Weiwei brings a selection of works to Stockholm. In Tyre, visitors will encounter multi-media pieces that oscillate between the rich iconography of Chinese history, contemporary expressions, and artistic predecessors and collaborators. The exhibition, curated by the artist, seeks to mirror injustice as well as hope in contemporary society – key works revolve around the problems that emerged in the fracture between ancient Chinese history and the Maoist Cultural Revolution, while also addressing contemporary issues such as refugee journeys across the Mediterranean.
5. Mazzoleni 1986-2016: 30 years of art 30 Italian artists, Mazzoleni, London
This spring, Mazzoleni celebrates its 30th anniversary with the exhibition Mazzoleni 1986-2016: 30 years of art 30 Italian artists. Coming straight from the gallery’s Turin space, the show features 30 pieces from its collection by 30 major Italian artists. Grouped together, the works trace a path through the history of 20th century Italian art, highlighting the early 20th century through Post-War movements and subsequent research. This commemorative display reflects the gallery’s role in promoting these artists on the international scene.
1. Merce Cunningham Dance Company performing Canfield, 1970. Brooklyn Academy of Music, Brooklyn, New York Image © James Klosty, courtesy of James Klosty.