Aesthetica's December - January Issue Out Now

Exploring the creative zeitgeist, Aesthetica editorial is engaging and offers new perspectives on contemporary arts, looking at the art in relation to the social, political and economic.

Issue 32 of Aesthetica explores many of these topics; from the V&A’s major exhibition Decode: Digital Design Sensations looking at how raw code can be used to create art. Also a follow-up on the Lyon Biennale looking at Hou Hanru’s has curated The Spectacle of the Everyday. Barbara Kruger’s retrospective, Paste Up opens in London, which provides a timely reappraisal of her early works and wry social commentary of vast consumerism and the making of identities. Finally, a look the imagination of Tim Burton, a show at MoMA showing over 700 images of the filmmaker’s work, exploring the cross-pollination of art forms.

In film a chat with, Yojiro Takita on his Oscar-winning film Departures, a tender look at the universality of the human condition. The Brothers McLeod share their hints and tips in a practical two-part series providing a step-by-step guide to becoming an animator. As well as a Q&A session with film programmer, Philip Ilson about this year’s London Short Film Festival. In theatre an exclusive preview of I am Yusuf and This Is My Brother, opening at the Young Vic this winter, looks at the personal vs. the political.

While in music, an examination into the creative strategies that bands employ to get ahead today, and a catch up with A.A. Bondy on his new album. And to conclude, a chat with Simon Robson and an extract from the fantastic new book Diamond Star Halo by Tiffany Murray. With all the best exhibitions, productions, music and new releases of the coming months, Aesthetica considers the creative exploration of today’s most exciting artists.

Christmas Gift Subscriptions Are Now Available

Also available, the Aesthetica Creative Works Annual

Championing new talent in the genres of visual arts, photography, poetry and fiction, the Aesthetica Annual is a publication, which will stir your imagination.

Whether you’re a budding poet, superb sculptor, storyteller or an arts enthusiast, the Aesthetica Annual provides a platform to gather inspiration and to get those creative juices flowing.

The Aesthetica Annual reflects art’s greatest power: to comment, debate and analyse the times in which we live. Inside this collection there are 96 artists and writers that span nationality and age, offering a true insight into the creative zeitgeist of our times.


First permanent artwork for London Underground since 1984

Full Circle by Knut Henrik Henriksen (b 1970, Oslo) was unveiled today in King’s Cross St. Pancras Underground Station. This is the first permanent artwork to be installed on the network since Paolozzi’s mosaics at Tottenham Court Road in 1984. Let’s face it with the amount of time that we spend underground, these type of aesthetic pleasures do more than enhance the surroundings, but transform spaces.


Mohsen Makhmalbaf Wins the Freedom to Create Prize 2009

Mohsen Makhmalbaf, the celebrated Iranian filmmaker and official overseas spokesman for 2009 Iranian presidential candidate Mir-Hossein Mousavi, has won the 2009 Freedom to Create Prize. The only prize of its kind, the Freedom to Create Prize celebrates the use of the arts to drive change and build the foundations of creativity in broken societies. Mr Makhmalbaf was awarded the prize by Bianca Jagger, Founder and Chair of the Bianca Jagger Human Rights Foundation, at a high profile London ceremony at the Victoria & Albert Museum on 25 November 2009.

Cuba & Italy I

Cuba Italy China

Cuba Italy China – a fascinating exhibition, has just wrapped up in Somerset earlier this week. The focus of Cuba Italy was centred on capturing the pastels of decay and faded grandeur of the urban playground. The photographs were shot in Havana, Cuba, and Napoli, Italy. Although, very different places in the world, with diverse histories, language and culture, the images explore back streets and derelict palazzos, of these two vibrant cities; inviting you to complete the narrative of these isolated places.

throwing the house out the window sm

Mike Ballard – The All of Everything – Art will eat itself

The final exhibition to take place at the Arts Gallery, before the building is demolished for Crossrail, is set to be fittingly epic. This is the largest and most ambitious work yet by acclaimed artist Mike Ballard; from 10 December the Arts Gallery will become The All of Everything, a specially commissioned work which will to turn the entire gallery space into an all-encompassing installation covering floors, walls and ceilings featuring the artist’s flamboyant vision of art history.

Together No.2

Letter from the Curator – Amelie Art Gallery, Beijing

I received this yesterday from Amelie Art Gallery in Beijing. I really liked the images, and the letter to the curator as well, so I thought that I would share this with you. Especially, as the opening line two lines are so poignant for anyone working in the creative industries –we all have moments of genius and then sometimes…nothing at all! How the imagination works. Anyway, I thought this was a lovely way to discuss this exhibition. I hope you enjoy reading the letter.

Lorenzo Quinn Exhibition

Lorenzo Quinn’s Give & Take III unveiled in Berkeley Square, London

Lorenzo Quinn’s monumental bronze sculpture Give & Take III, measuring almost four metres high, was unveiled on Wednesday in Berkeley Square, London. The piece, which will be resident in the square for the next six months, forms part of Lorenzo’s major new solo exhibition, Equilibrium, which opened at Mayfair’s Halcyon Gallery, 24 Bruton Street, on Wednesday. Give and Take III will spend six months on public display in Berkeley Square until May 2010.

Fujii, Atsuko_Asparagus with red string

See New Works of Art For Free

The ING Discerning Eye Exhibition 2009 showcases some of the best new talent to hit the gallery walls this year. The artists were selected independently by six prominent figures from the art world: two artists,two collectors, two critics.

Among the selectors this year were collectors Peter Bowles and Lawrence Llewelyn
Bowen; Financial Times Art Critic Jackie Wullschlager; Keeper of the Word and
Image Department at the V&A, Julius Bryant; Royal Academician, Gus Cummins and
artist Lincoln Seligman.

Each selector has curated one section of the exhibition, drawing their own selection from works submitted by the public and the works of artists they have personally invited to exhibit.

The uniqueness of having each work chosen by an eminent individual, unlike in a group selected show, has earned the exhibition an excellent reputation among art lovers and collectors alike. The works of lesser-known artists are given the opportunity to hang alongside the work of more established artists helping to connect hundreds of new artists with new audiences.

ING Discerning Eye Exhibition 2009 at the Mall Galleries, London SW1
Until 22nd November 2009. Admission Free.

Image credits: (c) the artists
Fujii, Atsuko – Asparagus with red string

Malcolm Middleton pomotional photographs

Malcolm Middleton’s New Tour

Sorry, I know that I’ve been silent for the past few days. I’ve been busy with our deadline, and in fact, I am busy now, but I wanted to take a few minutes to write this. I am a HUGE Malcolm Middleton fan. It reminds me of our very first office, I listened to him over and over again, finding new things with each turn.

We’ll Mr Middleton is back this winter with a series of intimate evenings. Malcolm will perform a collection of comforting wintry acoustic songs about love, hate, death, and other stuff.

Credit - David Parry, PA 4

National Portrait Gallery to host McQueen’s Stamp tribute to Iraq fallen

On the day that the nation observes a two minute silence to remember those who have given their life in service to their country, The Art Fund, the UK’s leading art charity, announces that Queen and Country, the work of Official War Artist for Iraq, Steve McQueen, will go on display at the National Portrait Gallery in the Spring. This will mark the culmination of a UK wide tour of the artwork which is part of a campaign for images of those who died as a result of the Iraq conflict to be issued as official postage stamps by Royal Mail.

Winners of The Young Masters Art Prize

Contemporary art is really my passion, but I have considerable admiration for the Old Masters, the contemplative nature of this work is incredibly inspiring, so I was pleased to see that the Cynthia Corbett Gallery have launched a new Prize, The Young Masters Art Prize. Great concept – the fusion of the old and the new. This is something that I love to do.


Immersive installation – Anthea Hamilton at IBID

Anthea Hamilton’s new show at IBID includes sculptures and wall-based work following on from her recent exhibitions at Chisenhale Gallery and La Salle de Bains, Lyon. Hamilton produces carefully arranged environments in which each sculptural element is autonomous and yet come together in a way that has been described as “three-dimensional collage.”


Wunderbar Festival 2009

A new concept is afoot – performance art in people’s homes? What’s this all about?

Wunderbar Festival 2009 is hosting 12 incredible experiences in 12 homes across the North East this November. This outstanding new commission invites audiences into the homes of members of the public to see incredible new art performances – offering once-in-a-life-time insight into the astonishing diversity of people’s homes.

Tours of People’s Homes is a new commission for the internationally acclaimed artist Joshua Sofaer, who will lead a number of workshops culminating in a series of public performances inside the homes of selected participants. Members of the public have been working with the artist and director over the last few months to develop a tour or encounter in their own home.