Review of Frieze New York

A larger-than-life balloon dog by Paul McCarthy, almost identical to Jeff Koons’, marks the north entrance to Frieze NY on Randall’s Island. Clearly an eye-catcher, the piece indicated the wealth of art to be seen once inside. For its sophomore year in New York, over 180 galleries from 40 nations representing over 1,000 artists exhibited, presenting only contemporary art and works made by living artists. The event ran 10 – 13 May.

Review of Francisco de Corcuera:The Impossible Existence of a Mathematician at Rosenfeld Porcini, London

Entitled The Impossible Existence of a Mathematician, Rosenfeld Porcini’s latest exhibition presents a selection of recent works by the Chilean artist Francisco de Corcuera. At just over life-size, the imposing works command the visitors’ attention and induce a contemplative mood. Throughout the works on display de Corcuera, who comes from a strong Catholic background, may be seen to explore the seemingly irreconcilable duality between the spiritual and dogmatic aspects of religious life.

Review of Oat Montien’s Ex-Libris at The Book Club, London

The enchanting nature of books is a childhood gift experienced long before we are able to understand the words on a page. This experience is something artist Oat Montien successfully evokes through his first solo show in London. The Book Club, based in London’s east end, plays host to the innovative Ex-Libris collection and sees the natural collaboration of books in The Book Club.  Each work reflects the comforting retreat books offered in our early years. 

Interview with Director of PULSE New York, Cornell DeWitt

Marking its eight edition, PULSE New York  took over the city last weekend 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 . PULSE Contemporary Art Fair Director Cornell DeWitt speaks to Aesthetica about why PULSE is an antidote to the institutionalized art fair and is at the heart of the New York art scene.

Hamlet’s Hybris (A Remix), Short Film from ASFF

Prince Hamlet is on a journey to England. While making plans for revenge on his father’s murder, he is caught between his hybris and insanity. The murderer, Hamlet’s uncle who has taken his father’s place on the throne of Denmark, now wants to kill him. Finally, Hamlet knows he has to escape death through transformation. The film has five episodes referring to the classical Hamlet’s five-act structure, with excerpts of original dialogue remixed with sounds and music. Scenes are shot in the UK, France, Germany, Finland and Norway. This production featured in Aesthetica Short Film Festival (ASFF) 2012 as part of the Experimental Films series. There is still chance to submit a short film for ASFF 2013, which runs 7 – 10 November across the city of York. The final deadline for submissions is 31 May.


LOOK/13, Liverpool

For the 2013 edition of Liverpool’s International Photography Festival, LOOK/13 has collated the outstanding works of photographers such as, August Sander, Rankin, Weegee, Martin Parr, Tom Wood, Charles Fréger, Eva Stenram, Kurt Tong and many others. As one of the UK’s leading photography events, the festival unites established photographers with international emerging talent. LOOK/13 will invite its dynamic line-up of artists to explore the idea of subjectivity and selfhood, summing up its central theme in the question, “who do you think you are?” Opening in Liverpool on 16 May for a packed weekend of festivities, the highlights include Redeye’s sixth National Photography Symposium (16-17 May) and PULSE (18 May), an afternoon of presentations by some of the UK’s most influential photographers.


Theaster Gates: 13th Ballad at MCA Chicago

13th Ballad, an installation by Chicago-based artist Theaster Gates, is an extension of the artist’s 12 Ballads for Huguenot House, which was co-produced by the Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA) Chicago for dOCUMENTA (13). For 13th Ballad, Gates creates a new large-scale installation in the MCA’s Kovler Atrium that comprises objects and materials from the Huguenot House, along with a monumental double cross sculpture and carved wooden pews which create an ecclesiastical ambience to suggest that art museums, like churches, are sites of pilgrimage and thoughtful contemplation. 13th Ballad is accompanied at the MCA by a series of collaborative performances and is on view from 18 May to 6 October. 

Hostage, Short Film from ASFF

Emotionally tense, Hostage is a gritty tale of a woman taken hostage by a man who does not speak English, and how they manage to connect beyond the limitations of language. The short directorial debut of emerging Canadian filmmaker Joanna Jang screened at over 10 festivals prior to its appearance in the Aesthetica Short Film Festival (ASFF) November 2012. Dark and dramatic, Hostage was a popular feature in the ASFF 2012 Thriller line up. There is still chance to submit a short film for ASFF 2013, which runs 7-10 November across the city of York. The final deadline for submissions is 31 May.

Linder Sterling: The Ultimate Form, Wakefield

This weekend Linder Sterling presented her UK premiere of The Ultimate Form, a physical collage that combined dance, costume, music and her provocative prints. Set in the gardens of The Hepworth Gallery, seven dancers from the Northern Ballet wound their way across the stage, demonstrating strength and poise in time to Stuart McCallum’s impressive score. Referred to as a “living collage”, Sterling’s works literally moved as they adorned Richard Nicoll’s carefully crafted costumes. Already presenting The Ultimate Form  at her retrospective in Paris at the Musee d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris earlier this year, the performance will next appear at the Tate St Ives early in 2014.


Interview with Kate Lindsey of Ariadne auf Naxos

The 2013 edition of Britain’s best-loved opera festival, Glyndebourne, opens in style on 18 May with a new production of Richard Strauss’ Ariadne auf Naxos. Directed by Katharina Thoma, and under the baton of Vladimir Jurowski in his final season as Glyndebourne’s Music Director, the production also sees many operatic talents making their Glyndebourne debuts. Mezzo soprano Kate Lindsey, who takes on the role of the Composer, is one such artist, and Aesthetica speaks to her about this exciting new experience and what audiences can expect.


Christopher Williams: For Example: Dix-Huit Leçons Sur La Société Industrielle (Revision 18)

Christopher Williams opens For Example: Dix-Huit Leçons Sur La Société Industrielle (Revision 18) at David Zwirner, London, this Friday. Running 17 May until 15 June, the exhibition is a critical investigation into the medium of photography and the nature of industrial culture. Williams studied at the California Institute of the Arts under the first wave of West Coast conceptual artists, including John Baldessari and Douglas Huebler, only to become one of his generation’s leading conceptualists.

Cockatoo, Short Film from ASFF

The award-winning short film Cockatoo tells the story of a man attempting to heal his broken heart by hiring a young girl to play the role of his ex-girlfriend. An 11 minute comedy, Cockatoo was produced by Ninja Milk and directed by Matthew Jenkin. Shortlisted in the final selection of the Aesthetica Short Film Festival 2012 (ASFF), Cockatoo has received widespread success not only at ASFF but at other events such as Flickerfest 2012 and won Best Foreign Director at Lebanon International Film Festival. Cockatoo is a leading example of how to champion comedy in short film. There is still chance to submit a short film for ASFF 2013, which runs 7-10 November across the city of York. The final deadline for submissions is 31 May.

Three Blind Mice, Short Film from ASFF

A master at his craft, Geoff Souster’s classic tailoring in Chris Whitehead’s short film, shows that success is not always born out of academia. A three minute documentary, Three Blind Mice reflects on how Souster launched his career as a bespoke tailor and perfected his craft over 40 years. Produced by Film Infinity Video Production, the film was shortlisted for the Aesthetica Short Film Festival (ASFF) 2012 as part of the documentary category, and went on to gain further success in the Reed Film Festival and Rushes Soho Shorts Festival, which screened the film at The Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA) in London last year. There is still chance to submit a short film for ASFF 2013, which runs 7-10 November across the city of York. The final deadline for submissions is 31 May.


Daniel Gordon: The Green Line, Los Angeles

The Green Line is Daniel Gordon’s first solo exhibition in Los Angeles, and from 18 May until 29 June his colourful and striking works will adorn the walls of M+B. The exhibition title is a nod to Matisse’s well-known 1905 portrait of the artist’s wife and is visually referenced in several of Gordon’s works including large scale still lifes and portraits, along with a selection of smaller works operating as isolated studies. Available at the gallery will also be Gordon’s fourth monograph titled Still Lifes, Portraits & Parts, published by Mörel in conjunction with the exhibition. 

Daddy, Short Film from ASFF

Featured at the Aesthetica Short Film Festival (ASFF) 2012, short film, Daddy, is a visceral expression of director Sydney Southam’s knowledge of her father’s suicide. The artist film depicts Southam’s privileged, yet tragic background, blessed with success and wealth, but unfortunately affected by an inordinate amount of premature death, many cases of substance addictions, and bitter relationships and abusive behaviour. Consisting of idyllic and picturesque archival film and the artist’s own footage, the short explores the dichotomy between what is preserved in the family memory and what is remembered about the actual events. There is still chance to submit a short film for ASFF 2013, which runs 7 – 10 November across the city of York. The final deadline for submissions is 31 May.


Interview with Emilie Pugh

Natural Perception was an art show recently curated by Aretha Campbell at 68 Dean Street, a Georgian House in Soho. The apt and stunning venue showcased the work of eight artists including Henry Hudson, Mat Chivers, Emilie Pugh, Nancy Fouts, Dr. Victor Schroeder, Guy Archard, Phoebe Dickinson, Adeline de Monseignat, Sam Pelly, Yun-Kyung Jeongs and Camilla Emson amidst the wooden beams and cobwebs. The show was a take on Darwin’s theory of Natural Selection. Emilie Pugh, whose work consists of a gentle union between the permanence of ink and the volatility of burning incense-marks into paper, was one of the artists. Emilie has recently secured an artist residency in Berlin to begin this year, and Aesthetica speaks to Emilie about her work.


Leslie Thornton: Luna, New York

For the second time, New York artist Leslie Thornton returns to the Winkleman Gallery, New York, to exhibit an inspiring new work. Luna is a detailed examination of nature and technology, utilisng the interplay of place, memory, and abstraction to produce a piece glittering with colour and character. Running, 11 May to 22 June, Thornton’s practice crosses the borders of cinema, video, digital media and installation.

Annegret Soltau: ZeitErfahrung L’esperienza del tempo, Brescia

German artist Annegret Soltau’s current solo show, ZeitErfahrung L’esperienza del tempo, at Maurer Zilioli Gallery Brescia, is described as somewhat of a “mini retrospective.” Upon entering the gallery, the viewer is immediately transfixed by the numerous photographs of body parts sewn together and reassembled on to other bodies. Large silver framed photographs display what are acknowledged as her family members, the images depict individuals and groups posed carefree and relaxed.

ABCDead, Short Film from ASFF

A dark and gothic film, ABCDead is a two minute tale of experimental genius. Shot in black and white, the short follows a story of sadness and untimely death. A visual poem, ABCDead was directed by Camilla Robinson and produced by Dapper Films. The film was part of the official selection for the Aesthetica Short Film Festival (ASFF) 2012 and was played in the Experimental series. There is still chance to submit a short film for ASFF 2013, which runs 7 – 10 November across the city of York. The final deadline for submissions is 31 May. 

Safwan Dahoul: Repetitive Dreams, London

For the first time Syrian painter Safwan Dahoul exhibits his work in the United Kingdom at Ayyam Gallery, London. Runing 9 May until 15 June, Repetitive Dreams includes the first series of paintings Dahoul has created since leaving Damascus for Dubai last year. The exhibition in London coincides with an exhibition of large-scale works by the artists as Edge of Arabia, London, from 8 May until 15 June. 


Essential Film Festivals this May

To celebrate the final month of the Aesthetica Short Film Festival (ASFF) call for entries, Aesthetica presents the essential film festivals to follow or attend this May. The deadline to submit a short film is the 31 May, and the final selection will be screened in York, 7 – 10 November. Covering the genres of drama, documentary, animation, comedy, music video, thriller, experimental and artists’ film, the festival showcases the films across 15 distinct and historic locations in the city of York. Here are our top film festivals this month.


Palace Art and Craft Fair, London

For the third year, the Palace Art and Craft Fair returns to London, 17 – 19 May. Organised by the team behind the highly successful and well established Brighton Art Fair, MADE LONDON and MADE BRIGHTON, this year the fair becomes an art, craft and design fair; a small scale more intimate event showcasing highest quality and original contemporary art and design across all media. Located in the beautiful grounds and main building of Fulham Palace, the historic Tudor/Georgian Palace, formerly the country home of the Bishops of London right by the river at Putney Bridge, is the perfect spot for perusing and purchasing art.

Interview with Previous ASFF Best of Fest Winner, Rich Williamson

The deadline for submissions for the Aesthetica Short Film Festival is fast approaching. There is just under a month left to submit short films to the festival that runs across the city of York in November, and the final deadline for submissions is 31 May. Aesthetica speaks to the director of The Sugar Bowl, Rich Williamson, (co-directed with Shasha Nakhai), about his enjoyment of ASFF and his advice for future applicants. 

Review of Saloua Raouda Choucair at Tate Modern

The world’s first major museum exhibition of the Lebanese artist Saloua Raouda Choucair is long over-due and can finally be seen at the Tate Modern. Choucair, now 96 years old, has dedicated her entire life to enriching art through her interest in a vast array of subjects such as architecture, painting, science, mathematics, Islamic art and poetry. When considering Choucair’s work one must look at it from a point of view that delivers the difficulties of the times she has experienced and endured as a female artist living in Beirut, the capital and largest city of Lebanon. It would be correct to assert that Beirut was and is the Paris of the Middle East. In this respect it is not shocking to see fascinating art emerging from the city and its environs. However, it would also be correct to say that, where there is political and social upheaval, art thrives; as seen in Choucair’s life-long work.


Aesthetica Offer at Hans Josephsohn, Yorkshire Sculpture Park

The first UK major indoor and outdoor Hans Josephsohn exhibition launches this week at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park, showcasing work from a career which spanned almost 60 years. To mark this celebration of the late Zurich-based artist, visitors can pick up a free copy of Aesthetica when they spend £10 or more in the YSP shop from Friday 10 May. The largest sculpture park of its kind in Europe, YSP is situated on the 500 acre, 18th century Bretton Hall estate in West Yorkshire and is open daily from 10.00 – 16.00.

Mariele Neudecker, HOUSE Festival of Visual Arts, Brighton

Running in parallel with Brighton’s festival season is HOUSE, a celebration of visual art and domestic space. The lead artist for the sixth edition is Mariele Neudecker, who presents, Heterotopias and Other Domestic Landscapes at the Regency Town House, Brunswick Square, Brighton. Running 4 until 26 May, the exhibition is the artist’s most ambitious installation to date and utilises the building, treating it as a container for an increasingly immersive body of connecting works. The showcase includes sculpture, video, photography and imagery of the Arctic, the Azores, Australia, American and the world’s deepest oceans.


Los Carpinteros: Irreversible at Sean Kelly, New York

Los Carpinteros’ new exhibition Irreversible will open on 11 May at Sean Kelly in New York. The show will be installed in all three of the gallery’s exhibition spaces and will include new sculptures as well as a video installation—a first for the artists. As an exhibition, Irreversible addresses themes of community, the passage of time, and the effects of historic events as endured by the anonymous individuals who comprise a society. Los Carpinteros’ work conflates conflicting periods, styles and subject matter to articulate the push and pull that major social and political events exert on the citizens who experience them.


Review of Ellen Gallagher’s AxME at Tate Modern

The new Ellen Gallagher show opened on Wednesday at the Tate Modern. After the gigantic shows last year of both Damien Hirst and Edvard Munch it’s refreshing to see a not so publicly known artist on show throughout their sprawling rooms. Rather than packing the renowned artist punch, her work was allowed to ramble more freely, showing experimental mixes of collage and video work much looser than the display of a universally recognised artist.


Interview with Previous ASFF Entrants, the Blaine Brothers

To celebrate the final month of the Aesthetica Short Film Festival Call for Entries, we caught up with previous entrant Ben Blaine of the British filmmaking duo the Blaine Brothers. Their comedy, The Maestro, screened at ASFF 2011, and stars Robert Bathurst, Tim Samuels and Sirine Saba. Originally produced for BBC Comedy Online before being shown at ASFF, The Maestro has also featured in a number of other festivals across the UK and internationally. They are now producing a new feature film, Nina Forever, and Ben chats to us about his new film, his experience at the film festival, and gives advice to filmmakers considering entering this year.


Athens Video Art Festival 2013

The Athens Video Art Festival returns for the 9th edition of the International Festival of Digital Arts & New Media. Running 7 until 9 June, exhibitions, screenings, workshops and performances will be hosted at the Historical Centre of Athens, opening a dialogue between public and private space.


Tate Liverpool is 25

Since 1988, Tate Liverpool has been the home of some of the world’s most important art works and attracted 15 million visitors. Opening its doors on 24 May, 1988, the gallery has become the most visited venue for modern and contemporary art outside of London. The gallery has already received several birthday wishes in the form of postcards, letters, emails and artworks, from Wayne Hemingway, Anthony McCall, Yoko Ono, Ed Ruscha, Bob and Roberta Smith, Zarina Bhimji and Colin Self. From 17 May until 2 June, Tate Liverpool will be celebrating in style with a specially curated exhibition entitled  Tate Liverpool is 25.


Mike Kelley: Mobile Homestead at Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit

Mobile Homestead is a permanent art work by the late Mike Kelley located on the grounds of the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit. It’s both a public sculpture and a private, personal architecture – based on the artist’s childhood home on Palmer Road in Westland, a neighbourhood which primarily housed workers for the Big Three auto makers: Ford, Chrysler and General Motors. In a largely disinvested city with many abandoned houses and dilapidated buildings, Mobile Homestead enacts a reversal of the ‘white flight’ that took place in Detroit following the inner city uprisings of the 1960s. It does so at a time when the city is exploring new options of renewal by assessing its singular post-industrial conditions in an attempt to articulate a new model for American cities. The sculpture, which almost exactly replicates the vernacular architecture of working class neighbourhoods in the American Midwest, brings the suburbs back into the city, and as it travels – on specific missions – the mobile home performs various kinds of community services, establishing a permanent dialogue with the community that houses it.


PUNK: Chaos to Couture, New York

The Costume Institute of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, open PUNK: Chaos to Couture this May. Running 9 May until 14 August, the exhibition collates one of the most significant and political forms of fashion as it explores punk’s influence on high fashion. Beginning at the birth of punk in the 1970s, PUNK: Chaos to Couture  spans the transformation of the movement, concluding with its resonating impact today.


From Albers To Warhol (To Now), Museo di Santa Giulia, Brescia

The current exhibition at Brescia’s Museo di Santa Giulia, From Albers To Warhol (To Now), presents the Daimler art collection. Although this collection has never before seen in Italy, it has already traveled to museums in Singapore, Sao Paulo, Tokyo, Cape Town, Johannesburg, Buenos Aires and Vienna. The collection, consisting of more than 2000 works of art, a selection of which fills 12 rooms of the second floor of the Museum, is situated amongst the backdrop of Roman ruins and picturesque mountain ranges. The work focuses primarily on abstract aesthetics and spans the 20th century in a wildly compelling manner.

1963 at Howard Greenberg Gallery, New York

New York — 1963 was a year when everything changed. It was a roller-coaster time in American political and social history, when the nation experienced civil rights protests, the start of Beatlemania, and growing involvement in Vietnam. Martin Luther King, Jr.‘s “I Have a Dream” speech in Washington, D.C., brought enormous hope. And then, in the final months of the year, the assassination of President John F. Kennedy plunged the country into darkness, abruptly halting an age of innocence. On 9 May, Howard Greenberg Gallery‘s new exhibition 1963, will bring together more than 40 photographs depicting events from this watershed year.


John Riddy: Palermo, London

For his fifth solo exhibition at London’s Frith Street Gallery photographer John Riddy’s latest body of work, Palermo, takes a broader look at the less visible parts of the Sicilian capital’s urban landscape. The sites photographed for the series range from abandoned back alleys to deserted shipyards. An empty town square photographed at midday would seem to suggest that the Palermo photographs are the product of a Photoshop session, wherein the artist has carefully removed all of the human subjects usually present in these locations. However, this is not the case, and post-production in Riddy’s work is limited to adjusting the textural elements in his photographs, including light and colour.


One Month Left to Enter the Aesthetica Short Film Festival 2013

There is just one month to go before the submission deadline for the Aesthetica Short Film Festival 2013 (ASFF). Enter your film by 31 May and screen your work in an impressive setting to an international audience and be in with the chance of  wining a cash prize. 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. High profile ASFF attendees in 2012 included representatives from Warp, BAFTA, Channel 4 and Raindance. Over 200 films will be screened at this unique event, in 15 iconic locations across the historic city of York in the UK from 7-10 November 2013.

Catlin Art Prize Exhibition, London

In its seventh year, The Catlin Art Prize opens an exhibition at the Lononewcastle Project Space, 2 – 26 May. Featuring the nine finalists from The Catlin Guide 2013, each of them have produced a new piece specifically commissioned for the Londonewcastle Project Space. The exhibition includes large-scale painting from Steven Allan (Royal College of Art) and Bee Griffith (Goldsmiths), sculpture by Conall McAteer (Central St Martins), new photographic portraits by Juno Calypso (London College of Communication), installations by Terry Ryu Kim (Slade School of Fine Art) and David Ogle (Lancaster University), a marathon performance piece by Nicky Deeley (Royal College of Art) and contrasting approaches to filmmaking from Fatma Bucak (Royal College of Art) and Robert Crosse (Slade School of Fine Art).


Interview With Bedwyr Williams On His Upcoming Exhibition

The Starry Messenger was a convention recently held at St Fagans National History Museum and was a prelude to the exhibition at the Venice Biennale. In anticipation of the Biennale this summer, Aesthetica spoke to Williams about his plans for the exhibition, and what it means to be representing Wales at the internationally renowned art event.


Bella Kerr: Keeper at Mission Gallery in Swansea

The traditional white cube gallery space comes with a cultural set of definitions and rules, it’s a set interaction between viewer and art object, with the object presented for the viewer to contemplate, there is a predetermined level of participation, which often makes it hard to negotiate, both from the experienced and casual gallery visitor. Keeper(s) investigates the gallery space, the role of the artist and the participation of the viewer. When we enter the space we are given the opportunity to interact, with the exhibition becoming a malleable object which shifts and changes with each encounter.