Eva & Franco Mattes: Emily’s Video, London

Collating the random reactions of volunteers, Eva and Franco Mattes film Emily’s Video is the result of an online call to watch “the worst video ever”. Running at Carroll/Fletcher, London from 23 April until 11 May, the film is a demonstration of audiences’ reflecting on another film. The original video – sourced from the “Dark Net”, the internet’s disturbing alter ego – has been destroyed, with these second hand experiences the only proof of its existence. In line with You Tube’s “reaction videos” Emily’s Video provokes disbelief, fear, anger, disgust, and nervous laughter. Some participants hide their eyes or simply walk away, while the external audience eagerly await the next response. 


Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam, Re-opens Tomorrow

After 10 years of extensive renovation, Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam, is due to open tomorrow, 13 April. Fittingly, there will be a weekend of festivities led by Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands, who will perform the official opening ceremony in front of the building. The transformation of the Rijksmuseum is one of the most significant ever undertaken by a museum. The historic 19th-century space has been transformed and new public facilities have been created including a spectacular new entrance hall, a new Asian pavilion and renovated gardens. The museum will feature over 8,000 works of art and artefacts telling the story of 800 years of Dutch art and history, from the Middle Ages to the present day. The world-famous collection, including masterpieces by artists such as Frans Hals, Jan Steen, Johannes Vermeer and Rembrandt van Rijn, will be presented in chronological sequence for the first time, creating an awareness of time and a sense of beauty. 


Rudolf Stingler at Palazzo Grassi, Venice

The programming of Palazzo Grassi – François Pinault Foundation follows the principle of an alternation between thematic group exhibitions devoted to the works of the Pinault Collection and solo exhibitions by major contemporary artists. As part of the solo exhibitions, Rudolf Stingler has unveiled his first exhibition encompassing the entire space at Palazzo Grassi on 7 April. Conceived by the artist with the valuable and meticulous collaboration of Elena Geuna, the exhibition Rudolf Stingel presents over thirty paintings from international collections, including those of the artist and of François Pinault, forming a corpus that itself becomes a masterly work.

Pick Me Up: Graphic Arts Festival, London

The Graphic Arts festival Pick Me Up, opens 18 April at Somerset House, London. An annual celebration of the wonderfully diverse sphere of graphic arts, the UK’s original contemporary graphic arts festival brings together a plethora of works and experts in the field. As well as showcasing and selling affordable artworks in live action studio spaces from the world’s most inventive and ingenious graphic artists, Pick Me Up presents an exciting and eclectic programme of events and workshops, hosted by some very special guests. The event includes highlights such as Children’s Choice Weekend with Aardman and the illustrator of the Gruffalo, Axel Scheffler,  Modern Toss’ World Record Attempt, Zoom Rockman’s Live Comic Book Scene and industry insider talks from the Guardian’s digital agency and royal mail.


Winners Announced For The Designs Of The Year 2013

The Design Museum has announced the seven category winners for the annual Designs of the Year Awards. The awards celebrate the best of international design from the last 12 months. The overall winner for the Design of The Year 2013 will be announced on Wednesday 16 April.


Review of The Magic of the State, Lisson Gallery, London

The Magic of the State is the name given to a new group exhibition, which has recently opened at Lisson Gallery in London. The Lisson exhibition opens just as a show of the same name opens in Cairo’s Beirut gallery. The collaboration between Lisson and Beirut heralds the beginning of a new collaborative project between two galleries occupying vastly different political, social and economic spaces and, in doing so, explores an innovating model for future curatorial practices. In future ventures between both galleries, the same artists invited to participate on this occasion will be expected to produce a new selection of works.


Cityscapes, Flowers Gallery, New York

Cityscapes at Flowers Gallery, New York, collates modern artists who respond to elements of urban life in their various practices. Included in this exhibition will be, David Hepher, Peter Howson, Patrick Hughes, Lucy Jones, Nadav Kander, John Keane, Jiro Osuga, Tai-Shan Schierenberg and Renny Tait.  Each of those involved respond to the city in a unique way, presenting a show that examines the urban landscape and the inhabitants within it.

Martin Boyce: Eyes, A Study at David Roberts Art Foundation

Martin Boyce’s Eyes (2012) is the fourth work in the David Roberts Art Foundation’s (DRAF) study series; a selection of case studies intended to provide a fuller understanding of works from the DRAF collection. The work in question is at the far end of a long room, and takes the form of a large-scale wall-panel. At a distance its surface appears to be a dull, mottled, grey concrete. A blue pyramidal object juts from its centre, and is surrounded by a cluster of dark, angular symbols. Moving closer to the work, the concrete texture is revealed as wooden boards, arranged flush in a diagonal pattern; like a parquet-floor that has been raised up onto the wall. The surface of the wood has been roughly stripped, leaving it dreary and undefined.

Environmental Photographer of the Year

Combining thought provoking imagery and stunning aesthetics, the Royal Geographical Society exhibit CIWEM’s Environmental Photographer of the Year 2013. Running 10 April until 3 May, the images are  outstanding environmental, social and natural photographs by international photographers and filmmakers. CIWEM’s Environmental Photographer of the Year 2013 is an international showcase for the very best in environmental photography and video, celebrating both emerging and established talent. 


SPILL Festival of Performance, London

The SPILL Festival of Performance brings together some of the finest and most radical experimental theatre, live art and performances of today’s prominent artists from around the world. The lineup for the 2013 edition is a true delight thanks to the most eclectic performances of our days, all brought together under the theme of ‘contact’, exploring issues of connection, exchange and advocacy.


Rebecca Ward, Ronchini Gallery, London

The New York based artist Rebecca Ward comes to the Ronchini Gallery, London, for her first major solo exhibition. Running 12 April until 18 May, the showcase represents Ward’s broad practice and includes brand new installations and paintings, exploring colour and space. Relating to Arte Povera the artist rarely uses a brush when painting, instead she prefers to use traditional and found materials. Combining an eclectic range of media including bleach, acrylic, spray paint, gouache and fabric dye, she begins an investigation into the relationship between the painted surface and its base.

Review of Jochen Lempert: Seeing is Believing at Norma Mangione Gallery,Turin

Seeing is Believing is an exhibition of selected works by the German photographer Jochen Lempert. Lempert’s photographs address the relationship between the world of nature and our man-made world. Having first studied as a biologist Lempert is well acquainted with the natural world and indeed his works often embody a scientific approach to the subject matter seeming to present them as cases studies as well as artistic subject matter.


Rena Effendi: Liquid Land: Legacies of Oil and Power at Impressions Gallery, Bradford

Opening on the anniversary of the Chernobyl disaster, Liquid Land: Legacies of Oil and Power reveals the struggles and resilience of people living in some of the world’s most polluted areas in the former Soviet Union. This is the first UK showing of this new exhibition by award-winning Azerbaijani photographer Rena Effendi.

Mario Nanni: luce all’opera, Varese

Until 2 June, audiences are able to take a look at Mario Nanni’s Luce all’ Opera (light at work), at the Villa Panza collection in Varese. Considered as a master of light and dark, the presentation compares and contrasts Nanni’s significant works with the permanent collection at Villa Panza, introducing a dialogue between classic pieces and the innovative use of light.

ASFF 2013 Now Open For Submissions

The Aesthetica Short Film Festival (ASFF) is now open for entries. ASFF allows for both budding and established filmmakers to connect with new, worldwide audiences and interact with some of the biggest personalities in the film industry today. Over 200 short films will be screened at this unique event, in 15 iconic locations across the historic city of York, 7 – 10 November 2013. It’s a fantastic opportunity for filmmakers in to showcase their work in an impressive setting to an international audience.

Interview With Alberto Biagetti On Crane.tv

Every April hundreds of designers make the annual pilgrimage to Milan for Salone del Mobile, the largest design trade fair in the world. All next week, Crane.tv are taking up residence on the Milan frontline, bringing you the latest design news, interviews and debates. In keeping with this year’s theme, interiors of tomorrow, they have conducted their very own open house special including a supper club with a twist and a private tour of designer Alberto Biagetti‘s home.

In this video the Italian designer shows Crane.tv around his home, a space that has become the ultimate private gallery.


Patternity: Pattern Power/Superstripe, London

In a cultural festival of pattern exploration, Patternity present Pattern Power/Superstripe at the London Newcastle Project Space from 6 April. The exhibition opens a series of events that explore the powerful presence of pattern and it’s impressive ability to positively inspire and connect humanity. Living in a world of patterns, the shapes and colours surrounding us can often be overlooked, this collection draws audiences to look at these familiar angles with a new perspective. 


Manet: Portraying Life, Picture House

For the first time in the UK, the Royal Academy of Arts present Edouard Manet’s stunning portraiture. The show has been a huge success and those outside of London are now offered the opportunity to view Manet’s works in HD on the big screen at a variety of cinemas across the UK. One of these events will be at City Screen, York, 11 April. 


Review Of Ettore Spalletti And Sol Lewitt At Galleria Massimo Minini, Brescia

In the small northern industrial town of Brescia one of Europe’s most prominent gallery owners, Massimo Minini, is situated. The current show at Galleria Massimo Minini is a double solo show with Italian sculptor and painter Ettore Spalletti and conceptual artist Sol Lewitt. The show sees a symposium built both between the artists and the curator.

New Order: British Art Today at Saatchi Gallery, London

Towards the end of this month, the Saatchi Gallery will launch a new programme of exhibitions which will continue the Gallery’s 25-year-long support of emerging artists and its drive to make contemporary art as widely available as possible to a British and international audience. An entire floor of the Gallery will be devoted to exhibiting artists in the early stages of their careers. Throughout the year the exhibitions will reflect the Gallery’s unique ability to respond quickly to some of the most exciting work being made by artists working in the UK.

Yang Fudong: Estranged Paradise. Works 1993 – 2013 at Kunsthalle Zürich

Yang Fudong is one of the most important figures of China’s contemporary art scene and independent cinema movement. His films and photographic work, often rooted in traditional Chinese painting, examine tensions between urban and rural, history and the present, worldliness and intellectualism. Their a-temporal and dreamlike quality, long and suspended sequences, dividing narratives, as well as multiple relationships and story lines reflect the conundrums of idealism and ideology of a new generation. At the same time, the works address the ideals and anxieties of young people who are struggling to find their place in the fast-paced changes of present-day China. Estranged Paradise. Works 1993 – 2013, curated by Beatrix Ruf and Philippe Pirotte, is Yang Fudong’s first major institutional survey exhibition in Europe, presenting film, installation as well as photography from the late 1990s until today, highlighting the formal aspects of the construction of cinema in the artist’s oeuvre and its resonance in Film Noir aesthetics. Following the exhibition in Zurich, the show will travel to the UC Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive (21 August – 1 December).


PULSE New York

Marking its eight edition, PULSE New York returns to present 60 national and international galleries, exhibiting a mix of emerging and established artists. Covering a variety of media, photography, painting, sculpture, performance, installation and video art, the fair celebrates artistic practice and a range of talent from 9 May until 12 May.

Anguish and Enthusiasm: What Do You Do With Your Revolution Once You’ve Got It at Cornerhouse, Manchester

Cornerhouse opens Anguish and Enthusiasm on 13 April, an extraordinary group show of new and recent contemporary art investigating post-revolutionary periods and events. Exploring contrasting perspectives and observations from Latin America, Eastern Europe, Asia and beyond, the exhibition considers politics, change and those who were lost along the way. Featuring new commissions by Sarah Pierce, Andreas Bunte, Mathieu Kleyebe Abonnec and Trust Your Struggle alongside existing work by an array of acclaimed artists including Eoghan McTigue, Pocas Pascoal and Jun Yang, Anguish and Enthusiasm will be accompanied by two Artist Film Forums showcasing shorts contributing to the exhibition’s themes, and events further investigating the outcome of a revolution.

POP! Design Culture Fashion, The Civic, Barnsley

Pop! Design Culture Fashion opens 4 April at The Civic, Barnsely, celebrating poodle skirts, rockers, Mods, kitsch glamour and 1970s retro. A reminder of when British popular culture first captivated the world, the exhibition uncovers a time when popular images, music, art and fashion blurred the boundaries of commerce, culture and style. Between the optimism of 1955 and the disillusion of Punk, the “Pop” generation created a lifestyle, which reached its apogee in 1966 in “Swinging London”, and values which constantly challenged those of wider society.

Interview with Artist Salvatore Arancio

London-based artist Salvatore Arancio talks with Aesthetica about science, sampling and psychedelia in his solo show at Rowing Projects. Titled Alternating Layers of Contrasting Resistance, the exhibition has been put into dialogue with Samara Scott’s cabinet room project Cd0xdsspi.


Adrian Melis: The Value of Absence at Kunsthalle Basel

Kunsthalle Basel‘s current exhibition calender includes the first solo show by the Cuban artist Adrian MelisIn the centre of the work of the 1985 Havana-born artist who is now based in Barcelona, workers are out of work, in both the socialist and capitalist economic system.  Melis’s early projects were concerned with working conditions and with the disinterested attitude of employees towards their work in Cuba’s state-owned enterprises. The lack of motivation and an indifference to the activities to be performed are common symptoms that indicate a deficiency or a loss of identification with the existing political and economic system. Normally, such an identification depends on the personal commitment of the individual and includes a belief or acceptance of a supportive system ideology. The general lack of productivity, which is typical of many Cuban farms is the starting point for Melis observations that lead to the emergence and “co-production” of paradoxical situations and activities and an intrusion into the everyday routine of the workers. 


C’est Wouf ! by M/M (Paris) at Air de Paris

Air de Paris unveils their new exhibition C’est Wouf ! by M/M (Paris) on 12 April. Art as practised by M/M(Paris) is a cumulative affair, spreading from medium to medium in a process of endless expansion. M/M’s concern is signs: their absolute plasticity and their persistence. Making play with scale and context, the work of this duo founded by Michael Amzalag and Mathias Augustyniak in 1992 is fuelled by transpositions of media and form that trigger corresponding effects of meaning. Thus M/M (Paris) exhibitions function equally as updates of their archive and as a pause allowing signs already produced to assume new forms and continue their trajectory.

Lottie Davies: Memories and Nightmares, London

Lottie Davies focuses her work on stories and personal histories, embracing the tales and myths society uses to construct life, and LA Noble Gallery present her Memories and Nightmare 5 April until 4 May. Unpicking humanities memories, life-stories and beliefs, the photographer takes inspiration from both classical and modern painting, cinema, theatre and the imaginary worlds of literature. Through her colourful and striking images, she reworks visual language, playing with notions of nostalgia, visual conventions and subconscious “looking habits”, with the desire to evoke a sense of recognition, narrative and movement.  


Pae White: Too Much Night, Again, London

For her latest London show, Pae White has created a hypnotic maze of black, red, blue and purple threads which reach from and terminate into the walls of South London Gallery - as seemingly endless and bewildering as the sleepless nights which conceived it. White’s bout of insomnia began when she stopped running, and this blur of colour and text reflects upon the thoughts which possessed her addled mind during this period.

Open End: Goetz Collection at Haus der Kunst, Munich

Open End is the fourth exhibition in an ongoing series of presentations of film and video works from the Goetz Collection in Haus der Kunst. Featuring the work of 14 renowned international artists, the cinematic works in this exhibition explore the idea of the open narrative with regard to the visual aspect and the use of language. As in the modern and contemporary novel, which constitutes one of the most overt aspects of the literary narrative, freer, open, narrative forms take the place of conventional, linear action towards an end point. Likewise, all the films in this exhibition share the trait of being open ended, thus pointing to affinities between the narrative techniques of the novel and visual structuring of contemporary film installations.


Aesthetica April/May Out Now

Aesthetica Issue 52 is now out in the shops. Inside this issue, we start with Amalia Pica’s latest exhibition, which opens in April at MCA Chicago and is the artist’s first major solo museum show in the USA, including 15 of her most significant works. We also look at the Julio Le Parc retrospective on now at the Palais de Tokyo, Paris, presenting a vast survey of the artist’s work from the 1950s to the present day. European Chronicles opens this May as part of Diffusion in Cardiff, which is Wales’ first international photography festival. NYC 1993: Experimental Jet Set, Trash and No Star is the latest exhibition to open at the New Museum in New York City, capturing a specific moment at the intersection of art, pop culture and politics.


BiennaleOnline: Emerging Artists Of The Future Announced

The online platform ART+ announces 180 of the most promising emerging artists at a critical moment, when they are poised to become established artists, chosen by 30 world-leading curators. A streamed selection of the artist’s work, including rising stars from across the globe, will be shown on the BiennaleOnline exhibition that opens 26 April. BiennaleOnline is the first curated, exclusively online biennial exhibition of contemporary art. Facilitating links between organisations and practitioners operating within the global biennial community by providing resources and an open platform for exchange, collaboration and research.