Ken Schles, born in Brooklyn in 1960, has been making photographic books for over a quarter of a century. Now, his portrayal of his own home shows in 40 black and white photographs a gritty and penetrating view of 1980s New York’s Lower East Side.
In 1853 The Photographic Society of London was founded “to promote the art and science of photography” and converted into The Royal Photography Society in 1894. Today the Society has more than 11,000 members ranging from world famous documentary, portrait, landscape and fine art photographers to amateurs and students, and it is the UK’s largest photography organisation. Drawn By Light at the Science Museum’s Media Centre, showcases the extraordinary breadth of the Society’s collections, both historical and contemporary.
Three photographers, Nadav Kander, Boomon and Mona Kuhn, explore a complex and personal relationship between mankind and the landscape, reflecting upon our connection with, and impact on, the surrounding environment.
For his first solo show in Europe, seminal post-war Japanese artist Chu Enoki presents his pioneering performance pieces of the 1970s, photographic works, exquisite, previously unseen drawings and his later sculptural works made with deactivated guns and cannons.
Issue 63 of Aesthetica hits shop shelves 1 February. In the February / March edition we explore innovation through experimentation with the new. Moving outside of comfort zones can be invigorating. It’s in these moments that we have the opportunity to embrace fresh ideas and apply them to everyday life. Drawing upon a range of influences can create something entirely original and interdisciplinary. Each artist featured in this issue follows that ideology. Many of the practitioners are people that have backgrounds in other areas but have moved between art forms and disciplines cross-pollinating their output along the way.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
“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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
The practice of photographer and film maker Ori Gersht addresses post war trauma by documenting the landscapes that have witnessed it. Don’t Look Back revisits three bodies of work that capture landscapes that have been the scene of atrocities; their their beauty and serenity sitting in juxtaposition with these previous horrors.
Subscriptions to Aesthetica are now available from as little as £12 in the January Sale, providing readers with a chance to save 50% on subscriptions in the new year and enjoy 12 months of the latest news in contemporary art and culture, direct to their home.
Transmitting Andy Warhol is a dazzling exhibition which enables the viewer to discover more about the Pop Art pioneer and founder of the influential Studio 54 movement, whose radical designs transformed the modern art world.
Berlin-based Japanese artists Futo Akiyoshi, Kouichi Tabata and Takahiro Ueda hold the first group show to take place within White Rainbow gallery. Each artist used their own signature medium to create works surrounding the themes of time, space and psychology: Futo Akiyoshi with minimal images of spaces; Kouichi Tabata through motion paintings; and Takahiro Ueda utilises naturally occurring phenomena with a series of constructions built around quartz crystals.
In the culmination of the Hidden Schools Tour, an innovative two-year project working with young people across Bradford, pupils from 12 schools take over Impressions Gallery with photographic tableaux re-imagining the past, and playful contemporary portraits which explore history and social identity.
Featuring the work of South African photographer Mikhael Subotzky and British artist Patrick Waterhouse, this photographic project documents five years in the lives of the inhabitants of Ponte City: an iconic Johannesburg landmark and the tallest residential skyscraper in Africa.
Comprised of 100 photographs acquired and assembled over the last five years, The Plot Thickens celebrates the 35th anniversary of Fraenkel gallery. The exhibition revels in the richness of the photographic medium through works by its greatest masters interwoven with prints by the unknown, the majority of which are being exhibited for the first time.
British artist Jonathan Monk replays, revises and re-examines works of Conceptual and Minimal art by acts of witty, ingenious and irreverent appropriation.Through wall paintings, monochromes, ephemeral sculpture and photography he pays homage to leading figures of the art world such as Sol LeWitt, Ed Ruscha, Bruce Nauman and Lawrence Weiner, reflects on the tendency of contemporary art to devour references and asks of it “what next?”
For Maria Friberg’s first solo exhibition with Pi Artworks, the gallery has curated a selection of photographic and video works that span the last 10 years. Friberg belongs to a generation of Scandinavian artists often referred to as the Nordic Miracle, a name coined in the late 90’s after a seminal survey exhibition at the Musee d’art Moderne, Paris.
This new work by award-winning New York based artist Penelope Umbrico continues her exploration into the consumption of photographs online, particularly focusing on the persistence of sunset imagery.
Organised by Jeu de Paume in collaboration with the City of Tours, and curated by Chema Conesa, this is the first show in France dedicated exclusively to Hungarian photographer Nicolás Muller; bringing together a hundred images and documents from the archives kept by his daughter Ana Muller.
For his latest series Australian photographer, Murray Fredericks, travelled alone with a bicycle and trailer, carrying his large format camera and supplies to capture a vast area of Southern Australia in severe weather conditions; taking both a physical and mental toll in order to capture the perfect frames.