Review of Here and Elsewhere, New Museum, New York

As much as it might seem provincial that non-western art is categorised by geography and ethnicity, Here and Elsewhere at the New Museum, New York, does justice to this grouping. Encompassing a vast territory of over 15 countries in the Middle East that include Iran, Syria, Lebanon, Egypt, Turkey, Palestine, UAE, and Morocco, the question of fetishising locality at the cost of undermining high standards of art is met head on. Here we see artistic productions by artists challenged by exile and war.

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Chasing Time, The Olympic Museum, Switzerland

Time is a key part of competitive sport, much of which is rated according to speed; it’s an essential element for designating winners and losers and establishing records.  This new exhibition at The Olympic Museum in Lausanne, Switzerland explores the concept of time as it is understood and experienced in sport.

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5 To See This Weekend

This weekend there is the chance to a series of exceptional exhibitions across the world. The art on display ranges from provocative pieces of Neo-Concretism at MoMA, New York, to 17th century still life paintings at Queensland Art Gallery. Meanwhile in London, Whitechapel Gallery presents audiences with a thought-provoking retrospective of Giulio Paolini, charting the interweaving progressions of art itself. We handpick the very best in contemporary creative production this weekend, read on to find out more.

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Mario Schifano 1960-1967, Luxembourg & Dayan, London

One of Italy’s most significant post-war painters, Mario Schifano considered painting as an intrinsically human art form capable of capturing the lifeblood of contemporary culture. This exhibition at London’s Luxembourg & Dayan displays some of his seminal works from his most artistically intense period, 1960-1967. During this decade he experimented with media and other, new techniques.

Review of Joan Fontcuberta: Stranger Than Fiction, Media Space, London

The new 525m² Media Space of London’s Science Museum plays host to Spanish photographer, Joan Fontcuberta in a surreal show which challenges the authority of museum exhibitions. Comprising six of Fontcuberta’s best-known works, Stranger Than Fiction includes not only large-scale digital prints, photograms and small analogue works but also grotesque hybrid taxidermy pieces, narrative text works, found objects and land art.

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Fiona Banner: Wp Wp Wp, Yorkshire Sculpture Park

The unusual name of this new exhibition by UK artist Fiona Banner is inspired by the sound of helicopters as portrayed in comic books and storyboards. Wp Wp Wp is an onomatopoeically named collection of works that Banner began almost two years ago. A highlight of the show is her ambitious new project Chinook. Formed from two sets of helicopter blades suspended from the ceiling of the Yorkshire Sculpture Park’s Longside Gallery, Chinook emphasises the absence of the helicopter’s body. Careful choreography rotates the blades in opposition to one another above visitor’s heads as though preparing for lift-off, overlapping and suggesting collison.

Interview with Syrian Artist Tammam Azzam

Stepping into the Dubai based studio of acclaimed Syrian artist Tammam Azzam feels like a teleportation back to Damascus, where his career started. The Arabic tunes playing on the radio and the pleasant odor of coffee, paired with the vision of this organised, artistic mess found in studios, are a refreshing change from the glitz and glamour often associated with Dubai. Stacked against the walls, lay the experiments for his new work, in which he focuses on destroyed buildings seen in Damascus. He will explain about them soon, he says. Because they are only the result of his life experience, which he finds is important to describe first.

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Primrose: Early Colour Photography in Russia, The Photographers’ Gallery, London

This new exhibition at The Photographers’ Gallery in London traces the advancements in Russia, looking at the development of Russia’s social history through the context of colour experiments and the growth of colour photography in Russia over the course of a century.  Translated into Russian, the word “primrose” means “first colour” and is one of the earliest and most colourful flowers to bloom in the spring.  The exhibition features over 140 works, many of them never seen before in the UK, and moves through the progressive use of colour in early Soviet photography, covering a timespan from the 1860s to the 1980s arranged in five chronological sections.

Interview with Abbey Walk Artist Robert Priseman

Abbey Walk Gallery, Grimsby, opens Easterlines today. The exhibition is a curated selection of work from the East Contemporary Art collection, founded by Simon Carter and Robert Priseman in 2013. In bringing a number of artists together, the showcase develops a dialogue between the individual concerns of each artist, reflecting on the nature of contemporary art today. We speak to curator and artist Robert Priseman about the ideas behind the project and his own approach to artistic production.

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Radical Geometry: Modern Art of South America from the Patricia Phelps de Cisneros Collection, Royal Academy of Art, London.

Many of the works on display in the Royal Academy’s new show have never been seen in the UK before and the exhibition presents over 80 paintings and sculptures chiefly drawn from the collection of Patricia Phelps de Cisneros. This is the foremost collection of geometric abstract art from Latin America in private hands.

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Yang Fudong , SALT, Sandhornøy, Arctic Circle

Remote, beautiful – and increasingly endangered – the Arctic has long been a subject of fascination for many and a source of inspiration for artists. SALT is an ambitious concept to create arts and cultural experiences in the northernmost regions of our planet. It will invite world-famous artists to the Arctic Circle to create works which respond to the breathtaking landscapes, nature and history of the Arctic – while always aiming to treat the landscape with care and respect.

The Artwork of Barrie Dale

Until recently Barrie Dale saw himself simply as a nature photographer.  Then, with nature being destroyed to the point where it was possible to envisage none being left, he also became a conservationist.  He now both conserves and photographs wild plants. Wild plants are typically very simple. This appears to give them great visual intensity, and he now wants to explore this artistic potential.  He finds the simplicity challenging, and sometimes frustrating, but ultimately rewarding.  His work is available online in a range of formats, and a print exhibition is planned for the Spring.  He talks to us about his passion for photography.