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5 To See This Weekend

Our 5 to See this Weekend provides plenty of opportunities to interact with the artists, whether it’s discovering the quiet life of photographer Vivian Maier, whose work was encouraged by the children she’d cared for as a nanny, or catering to Bruce Asbestos’ marketing whims. There’s also the chance to meet Alec Soth at his Songbook exhibition in New York on Saturday 31st January, or discuss DIY culture with Graeme Durant in Newcastle, and Pep Dardanyà’s exhibition at MACBA includes a QR code to encourage the further discussion of his work with visitors.

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Corinne Felgate: Bigger Than The Both of Us, The Rook and Raven Gallery, London

This solo exhibition by acclaimed artist Corinne Felgate is comprised of two new major installations: Bigger than the Both of Us (MOMA) and Studio X Y Z. Both draw on the artist’s on-going research into our collective relationship with the man-made environment, and how society’s perception of the manufacturing industry shapes our understanding the world today.

Sarah Gillespie : A Love As Old As Water, Beaux Arts, London

Sarah Gillespie’s works on paper depict, in simple ink and charcoal, ghostly landscapes and images of flora and fauna reminiscent of photograms, heavily saturated photographs or even paintings. She is fascinated by the play of light and dark, the boundaries between solid and liquid and how these change when drawn, and the ways in which a flurry of tangled lines can knit together. Her stunning painting is currently on display at Beaux Arts, London, until 28 February. 

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Anna Parkina, Contemporary Life & Avant-Garde Russian Art in Aesthetica Magazine

Anna Parkina’s work defies categorisation; appropriating the human ephemera of modern day culture and society, she creates works that reflect the human experience and environment. A Russian contemporary artist who grew up in one “country” (under two very different ruling classes, that of the Soviet Union and Russia under Yeltsin), social agitation and revolution were part and parcel of her youth and thus of her development. When faced with her work one immediately recalls to mind the propaganda posters and art works of the Russian constructivists, film noir of the 1940s and 1950s, and Pop Art, with the collages of pop artists such as Richard Hamilton.

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Stephen McKenna and Derek Eland Exhibitions at mima, Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art

This February, Stephen McKenna: Perspectives of Europe 1980 – 2014 opens at mima, Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art, in partnership with Hugh Lane Gallery, Dublin, and is the artist’s largest museum solo presentation in a decade featuring work from throughout his career including landscapes and cityscapes, with loans both nationally and internationally.

Mimmo Rotella, Robilant+Voena, London

Through work spanning 50 years of the artist’s long career, right up until some of his final works in the early 2000s, this exhibition at Robilant+Voena, London, will focus on Italian artist Mimmo Rotella’s fascination with innovative techniques, and bring to light the way that he manipulated material to achieve a conceptual framework, which extended from his studio into society.

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We Could Be Heroes, The Photographers’ Gallery, London

In 20 bittersweet photographs taken over the last century from master photographers, this exhibition explores youth culture and the various rites of passage towards adulthood. We Could Be Heroes reflects the rebellious bravado of the ‘teenager,’ a character which appeared during a new wave of post-war freedom, as younger western generations seized their opportunity to turn away from tradition and assert new attitudes and subcultures. 

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Realism in Rawiya: Photographic Stories from the Middle East, Impressions Gallery, Bradford

Six female photographers Myriam Abdelaziz, Tamara Abdul Hadi, Laura Boushnak, Tanya Habjouqa, Dalia Khamissy and Newsha Tavakolian comprise Rawiya, the first all-female collective to emerge from the Middle East. With this exhibition they hold a specific focus on gender and identity, depicting the contradictions, stereotypes, social and political issues of a region in flux.

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Interview with Christopher Wilmot-Sitwell on Art Fund and cazenove+loyd’s Inspired Journeys

The Art Fund has teamed up with one of the most respected names in the travel industry, cazenove+loyd, to offer audiences insightful and luxurious art tours to international destinations. The Inspired Journeys programme unites industry experts with art lovers in various locations across the globe, offering them a behind-the-scenes look at revered artistic locations. Some of the trips in 2015 will see Princess Xenia Hohenlohe present the hidden treasures of Bavaria; Director of Wilfredo Lam Centre of Contemporary Art, Jorge Fernandez, uncover the cultural heritage of Cuba and artist Olivia Dalrymple explore the creative history of India. We speak to Co-founder and director at cazenove+loyd, Christopher Wilmot-Sitwell, about the initial idea behind the tours and his favourite destinations. 

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Shih Hsiung Chou: Wait Until It Dries, Encounter Contemporary, London

Taking place in Encounter Contemporary, a nomadic gallery initiating unexpected ‘encounters’ with cutting-edge contemporary art practice, Wait Until It Dries is a major exhibition of new works by acclaimed, engaging and forward-thinking, Taiwanese artist Shih Hsiung Chou.

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Simon Norfolk: Stratographs, Benrubi Gallery, New York

Two series of long-exposure photographs document the impress of days, months, and years on the surface of the planet, one capturing the heat and ice of Kenya’s Lewis Glacier, the second depicting the war-ravaged Bamiyan Valley of Afghanistan.

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Review of Jeff Koons, Pompidou Centre, Paris

In this retrospective exhibition of American artist Jeff Koons, the Pompidou Centre has provided viewers with an illuminating chronology on the evolution of one of contemporary art’s most controversial figures. Koons is best known for his reproductions of ordinary shopping-mall items – like blow-up dolls and balloon animals – into metallic and glossy stainless steel objects. His work has fiercely divided many in the art world who argue that Koons offers a wonderfully ironic comment on the normative aesthetic value of art, while others condemn the pieces as kitschy self-merchandising for the Koons brand.

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Rights of Nature: Art and Ecology in the Americas, Nottingham Contemporary, Nottingham

In Nottingham Contemporary‘s latest exhibition, 20 international artists reflect upon the ecological, economic, political, and cultural crises of our modern world, opening up topics such as the current and catastrophic climate change, runaway global warming, and environmental destruction worldwide. Rights of Nature reveals how contemporary art contributes to the global rethinking of our species’ relationship with other living things – upon whose regeneration and survival our future depends.

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Ali Banisadr: At Once, Blain Southern, London

Ali Banisadr’s first ever UK solo show emerges as a series of oil paintings created over the last two years, including a 7-metre long triptych, his largest work to date. Banisadr’s fantastical landscapes, populated with grotesque hybrids in a perpetual state of frenzy, oscillate between the abstract and the figurative.

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Alec Soth: Songbook, Fraenkel Gallery, San Francisco

With 20 new and never-before-seen photographs Alex Soth moves away from the haunting and influential portraits and landscapes that he has become known for, and turns his lens toward life in the country. These photographs are gathered together in Songbook, which is due to go on display at Fraenkel Gallery, San Francisco, 5 February – 4 April.

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5 To See This Weekend

There’s plenty to get involved with this weekend in the art world. Ronchini Gallery, London, is home to the UK’s first solo exhibition of Pier Paolo Calzolari, an influential figure in the Arte Povera movement. The works of Michelangelo Antonioni are compiled with new contemporary photography to explore themes of voyeurism and media theory from the 1960s to the present day. Meanwhile, the Bloomberg New Contemporaries 2014 showcase is still available to view, using a plethora of new media to explore current affairs, human nature, and desire.

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Interview with Linda Ingham, Curator at Abbey Walk Gallery, Grimsby

Abbey Walk Gallery, a premier art venue located in Grimsby, focuses on showcasing an exciting and diverse rolling programme of modern and contemporary art in North East Lincolnshire and across the UK. Established in 2008, the gallery works with a fantastic selection of established and emerging practitioners, and hosts an innovative programme of exhibitions, workshops and events. Supporting artists’ through its in-house artists’ studios, the gallery seeks to promote the development of artists’ careers. This week Abbey Walk is at the London Art Fair. We speak to Linda Ingham, Curator and Project Officer at Abbey Walk, about the gallery’s attendance at the fair. Alongside her involvement with Abbey Walk’s programming, Ingham is also a gallery artist.

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Hello, My Name is Paul Smith, The Hasselt Fashion Museum, Belgium

The world’s leading museum devoted to architecture and design, The Hasselt Fashion Museum, takes audiences behind the scenes of Paul Smith’s world, which is dominated by intuitive creativity, in Hello, My Name is Paul Smith. Running 30 January – 7 June, the show, which previously appeared at Design Museum, London, unveils the expert craftsmanship and individual talent of a top designer.

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Christian Marclay, White Cube Bermondsey, London

Continuing Christian Marclay’s long-standing interest in the relationship between image and sound, this exhibition is comprised of a series of new works on canvas and paper that feature onomatopoeia taken from comic books as well as a lively programme of weekly performances.

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Max Neumann: New Works, Bruce Silverstein Gallery, New York

“The strange thing about heads is that the more you leave out, the more intense the expression becomes. In a different way than in portrait painting. It has absolutely nothing to do with that. These figures are just that to me: figures. They’re sexless, they have no special attributes. They are specters, shadows. What’s very important to me is the intensity, the presence. What that does. What it does in the painting. What it does with the viewer.” – Max Neumann.

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Seven from the Seventies, Flowers Gallery, London

Seven influential abstract painters from the 1970s, Colin Cina, Bernard Cohen, Noel Forster, Derek Hirst, Michael Kidner, Jack Smith and Richard Smith, exhibit works demonstrating a reductive and disciplined articulation of the sensations of light, form, sound, colour and space at Flowers Gallery, London, in Seven from the Seventies.

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Sidsel Christensen, Andrew Leventis and Lisa Slominski: We Never Dream Alone, Kristin Hjellegjerde Gallery, London

In We Never Dream Alone, works by Sidsel Christensen, Andrew Leventis and Lisa Slominski see the borders between real and unreal, fact and fiction, virtual and visceral, and blurred and explored. Diverse media, from video and painting to installation, bind together the diverse yet complementary practices of these three artists, as each navigates the ‘other’ space.

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Highlights of London Art Fair, 21 – 25 January, 2015

The UK’s premier fair for Modern and contemporary British art opens for its private view today. Situated in the Business Design Centre, Islington, the 27th edition of the London Art Fair will be on view to the public 21-25 January. With 128 exhibtors from across the world, the fair gives a unique overview of the art world and has an exiting programme of curated exhibitions, talks, films and performances. There are a number of highlights at this year’s event, including the inaugural Art Projecs Artist Award and the premiere of William Mackrell’s North South live performance on 22 January.

Edward Burtynsky, Stepwell #4, Sagar Kund Baori, India, 2013, (c) Edward Burtynsky, courtesy of Flowers Gallery, London

Q&A with Sophie Hall, Gallery Director at Flowers Gallery, London

In the build up to its 45th anniversary, Flowers Gallery brings a diverse showcase of international practitioners to the London Art Fair. Established in 1970 by Angela Flowers, the family run gallery was one of the first to open in London’s East End – now known as the capital’s most vibrant art scene. Growing into two spaces in London and one in New York, Flowers prides itself in its dynamic programme of all media by both established and emerging artists. The gallery is also an active publisher of prints and multiples. Aesthetica speaks to Sophie Hall, Gallery Director at Flowers, about the upcoming art fair and the gallery’s plans for 2015. 

Laurie Simmons, The Love Doll Day 31 (Geisha Close-Up), 2011, Fuji Matte Print, 101.6x76.2cm (40x30inches), Copyright the Artist. Courtesy Wilkinson Gallery, London

Laurie Simmons, The Arts Club, London

Ahead of new museum exhibitions in the USA, The Arts Club in London presents a selection of work spanning the career of American photographer Laurie Simmons. Born 1949 and working in the same period as Cindy Sherman and Barbara Kruger, Simmons uses photography to expose and critique media representation of women. Gender and sexuality are recurring themes in her work and she is notorious for using dolls and miniature objects to create staged realities.

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Horizon, Lehmann Maupin, Hong Kong

This group exhibition explores the concept of landscapes, both traditional and abstract, and the selection of work depicts both the external world and internal responses to nature. The artists featured are all gallery artists and include Tracey Emin, Billy Childish, Angel Otero, Teresita Fernández and Juergen Teller.

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In Conversation with Anna Vogel, in Aesthetica Magazine

Living and working in Düsseldorf, Germany, artist Anna Vogel (b. 1981) transforms found photography with painting techniques, such as varnish, acrylic, ink and pigment, to manipulate the reality of the natural landscape into a surrealist scene with exaggerated elements. Her work recently appeared in a solo exhibition at Sprüth Magers, Berlin, from 8 July until 30 August 2014, and a set of new photobased works are currently on display at CONRADS, Düsseldorf.

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Athena Papadopoulos, Zabludowicz Collection Invites, Zabludowicz Collection, London

The Zabludowicz Collection Invites series is a unique opportunity for UK-based artists without commercial gallery representation to showcase their work in a solo exhibition at a dedicated project space at Zabludowicz Collection. This spring, Canadian born artist Athena Papadopoulos (b. 1988) presents her multidisciplinary practice. Following her MFA at Goldsmiths, London, Papadopoulos shows a new group of works made especially for the exhibition at Zabludowicz Collection.

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Two Hundred Years of the Kingdom of the Netherlands: The Atlas Van Stolk, Kunsthal Rotterdam

This spring, Kunsthal Rotterdam presents Two Hundred Years of the Kingdom of the Netherlands: The Atlas Van Stolk until 8 March. The exhibition includes hundreds of prints, drawings, photographs, cartoons and posters from the Atlas which illustrate the lives of the Dutch people during two centuries of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, and show how they have viewed themselves over the years. 

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Nástio Mosquito: Daily Lovemaking, Ikon Gallery, Birmingham

This is a bold, provocative exhibition of the work of emerging artist, Nástio Mosquito. Exciting, contemporary and devoid of delineation, his work defies categorisation and points towards a new culture of art that combines pop, performance, fine art and politics. Hailing from the broadcast industry, where he worked previously as director and cameraman, this is Mosquito’s first solo exhibition.

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5 To See This Weekend

Help yourself to our selection of the best in international art with our 5 To See. 2015 is a time to look forward to contemporary innovations, as well as reflecting on the iconic past. The Guggenheim Bilbao explores key themes of the last 20 years in its Art of Our Time exhibition, celebrating the changing movements of contemporary artwork. Across in Penarth, Sanja Iveković’s politcal work at Ffotogalley condemns those social activists who are still left without a voice. Meanwhile, looking to the new in London, the Thomas Dane Gallery presents Walead Beshty’s latest work, which takes a new approach to his signature cyantoype process.

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Kevin Cooley: A Thousand Miles an Hour, Ryan Lee Gallery, New York

Throughout his practice, Los Angeles-based artist Kevin Cooley considers our evolving relationship with technology, nature, and ultimately each other. The underlying conceptual framework of his work is how these forces contend with each other and how we exist among them. His art is currently on display at Ryan Lee Gallery, New York, until 21 February.

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Mary Barnes: Boo-Bah, Bow Arts, Nunnery Gallery, London

Prolific outsider artist Mary Barnes (1923-2001) is represented in an exhibition featuring paintings and drawings spanning her artistic career which began in the 1960s in Bow, East London. The works predominantly derive from the collection of Dr. Joseph Berke, her therapist and friend, and who was nick-named “Boo-Bah” in a love letter scaling over a metre high and scrawled in Mary’s inimitable handwriting.

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Hugh Arnold: Agua Nacida, Mead Carney Fine Art, London

For his first London exhibition, internationally acclaimed photographer Hugh Arnold presents Agua Nacida (water born), a truly unique collection of hauntingly beautiful large-scale nudes, shot underwater on location in Fiji and Gozo.

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FutureEverything Festival, 25-28 February, Manchester

For its 20th anniversary, FutureEverything is not staging a retrospective, but a platform for a global community to collaboratively reflect on the bleeding edges of art, academia, design and business. This year, the pioneering digital culture Festival will feature new commissions, installations, conference speakers, film screenings and live events. In Manchester city, The Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM) will be the hub for the art, live and film programmes, while FutureEverything Conference returns to the neo-gothic Manchester Town Hall for inspiring talks from internationally renowned speakers and hands-on workshops.

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The Collective Conscience, Susan Hiller in Aesthetica Magazine

In 2011 Susan Hiller took London by storm with a massive retrospective at Tate Britain and new works at the Timothy Taylor Gallery. We delve into the Aesthetica archive and reflect on the American-born artist’s career explored in The Collective Conscience, which featured in Issue 39. Hiller’s work can currently be viewed at Den Frie, Copenhagen, until 5 March.

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Highlights from the Kochi-Muziris Biennale 2014

During December 2014, the small fishing town of Kochi in South India’s state of Kerala, was besieged by the international art crowd as the Kochi-Muziris Biennale 2014 (KMB) opened its second edition. India’s first and currently only biennale of contemporary art, the first edition saw a total of 400,000 visitors (just 60,000 less than the Venice Biennale) over its three month run, giving this hotly awaited second edition a lot to aspire to. Unveiling a multi-venue exhibition of 100 works by 94 artists from 30 countries, not including the numerous collateral projects initiated by independents, KMB’s second edition began with a very promising start.

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5 To See at London Art Fair

London Art Fair is the UK’s premier Modern British and contemporary art fair. The 27th edition of the fair is set to feature 128 galleries and will take place at the Business Design Centre in Islington, London. Running from 21-25 January 2015, there will be a special display in partnership with Pallant House Gallery called The Figure in Modern British Art. The fair will also feature Photo50, an exhibition of contemporary photography featuring 50 works, which is guest-curated by Sheyi Bankale. The showcase, Against Nature, explores the possibilities of how viewers relate to renewed storytelling within photography. We take a look at five of the stands to visit at the fair next week.

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Shirin Neshat: The Home of My Eyes, YARAT Contemporary Art Space, Baku

Guest curated by Dina Nasser Khadivi and featuring a major new commission, produced following Shirin Neshat’s time in Azerbaijan, alongside two earlier works – the seminal video installations Soliloquy (1999) and Passage (2001) – this exhibition marks the opening of YARAT Contemporary Art Space in Baku.

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Interview with Photographer J. Shotti on Project, Every Two Weeks

Bronx-based photographer J. Shotti works at the intersection between life and art. His first solo project, a collection of instant film images entitled EVERY TWO WEEKS is due to be released in book form in 2015. The work is a series of over 220 instant film images shot during a two week period using two automatic Polaroid Land cameras. The images serve as visual diaries that detail  Shotti’s story for these 14 days and the stories of those he came into contact with. We speak to the photographer about his interest in humanity and his newest project.