Manifesta originated in the post-communist period in the 1990s with the aim of balancing the information gap between the East and West, North and South. Offering audiences an opportunity to exchange knowledge and rethink the platforms and influences of art and its expressions, Manifesta considers both the poetic and political nature of art and contextualises the contemporary with the historical. Operating within contested areas allows the biennial to demonstrate the way in which art can aid understanding within this complex world and Manifesta encourages a critical dialogue.
MANIFESTA 10, The European Biennial of Contemporary Art, The State Hermitage Museum, St. Petersburg, Russia
Taking our appetite for sugar as a starting point to create images of a corrupted globalisation, James Ostrer takes over the glass façade and ground floor of the Gazelli Art House, as part of its Window Project, to present the unsavoury side of our addiction to the sweet stuff. Ostrer’s photographs of human subjects covered in layers of sweets and foodstuffs have a cartoon-like absurdity while exploring self-destructive behaviours and drawing attention to the volumes of sugar that flow through our bodies and our dietary culture.
David Ricci is an American photographer whose large-scale images explore the underlying rhythms and patterns that emerge from chaotic scenes. His latest ongoing project is a major departure from his earlier bodies of work. He takes photographs of peculiar, intriguing scenes whose meaning is a bit ambiguous and accompanies the images with text. The final piece becomes an entry in an evolving image-based reference that merges his photographs with words from unwitting online collaborators.
The Natural History Museum of London is a space of gargantuan proportions. The main entrance leads to a cavernous hall that comfortably houses the skeletal frame of a Diplodocus. Several feet away, on the landing of a pronged staircase, sits an oversized, marble statue of Charles Darwin. This is the scene that served as the backdrop to my initial encounter with vocalist, bassist, producer and actress Shingai Shoniwa of the Noisettes fame. She descended the staircase to deliver a bombastic show for a private, formal event that made the massive fossil and the historical giant she was sandwiched in between look like mere toys in her presence.
The Aesthetica Art Prize invites submissions from artists at all stages in the career, working in any medium and celebrates innovation and excellence in technical skill. Entries are open until 31 August 2014. Selected works for the latest edition of the Prize, spanning film, photography, sculpture and painting are presented here as demonstrations of the breadth and quality of works being produced today; and we highlight the longlisted artists’ achievements since the award. These include Henry Iddon, Ana Catarina Pereira, Wycliffe Stutchbury and Wilson-Eflerová (Kye Wilson and Helena Eflerová).
This weekend is an opportunity to visit a range of diverse and extraordinary exhibitions. From foregrounding emerging Welsh photographers at Ffotogallery in Cardiff to a retrospective account of artist Oscar Muñoz’s forty year career at Jeu de Paume in Paris, galleries across the globe are showcasing the best of the art world, both past and present. Read on to see our five recommended shows.
In the Special 60th Edition of Aesthetica we celebrate the emerging photographers that are shaping the future of the image-based practice in The Next Generation. We have partnered with the London College of Communication to survey some of photography’s rising stars and showcase their fresh ideas and new concepts. Rosaline Shahnavaz has produced work for the likes of Dazed and Confused, AnOther and Art Review, she speaks to us about her interest in documentary photography and her future plans.
Darren Nisbett is a photographer who has been exhibiting in group and solo shows for three years. His imagery explores the border zones between nostalgia and nature, and his piece Anesthetic was selected for the Aesthetica Art Prize Longlist of 100 artists. He experiments with different print media, including aluminium panels as well as traditional paper, and has exhibited at the 2013 Royal Academy Summer Exhibition. We ask Nisbett about his approach to photography.
Pedro Reyes, Vasco Araújo and Akram Zaatari, The Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery, Toronto, Canada.
Part of the internationally-focused Harbourfront Centre, The Power Plant showcases the latest work from artists around the world. This summer it opens three exciting new exhibitions by Pedro Reyes (b. 1972), Vasco Araújo (b. 1975) and Akram Zaatari (b. 1966). Although hailing from very different backgrounds, these artists are united by their perspectives on the world and their exploration of ideas.
As the final month to enter the Aesthetica Art Prize is upon us, we catch up with last year’s longlisted artist Karl Singporewala to discover how being selected for the Prize has furthered his creative practice. Selected for his work Dial M for Monument, Singporewala now exhibits this piece in a group show for the HIX Award 2014, hosted by the Cock ‘n’ Bull Gallery in Shoreditch, London. Designed by Damien Hirst and judged by Tracey Emin among other leading art professionals, the prize presents a month long exhibition of the 20 finalists throughout August.
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.
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.