Cornelia Parker (b. 1956) is a British sculptor and installation artist who is interested in the potential of materials. In 2013, Aesthetica spoke to Parker about her involvement with Glasstress: White Light / White Heat, as one of 65 artists challenged to work with glass. The show ran at two different locations in London: London College of Fashion’s Fashion Space Gallery and The Wallace Collection. Now, the artist’s signature piece Cold Dark Matter: An Exploded View (1991) can be viewed at The Whitworth in Manchester.
To mark International Women’s Day today, we celebrate women in film with an interview with Qatari Filmmaker Sarah Al-Derham. At just 22-years-old, Al-Derham has already directed six films and seen them screened at the Gulf Film Festival, Ajyal Youth Film Festival and Doha Tribeca Film Festival. Al-Derham seeks to highlight the role of women in Qatari society and she speaks to us about her hopes for the future and her work in the industry.
Featuring 50 new works, NOW at Himalayas Museum, Shanghai, is Michael Craig-Martin’s first major show in Asia. Working as an artist for over 40 years, Craig-Martin was an important figure in the development of London’s Young British Artists (YBAs), teaching the likes of Gary Hume, Sarah Lucas and Damien Hirst. Each of the brand new paintings exhibited will include ordinary objects – parts of modern life’s furniture – such as a milk carton, a chair, a computer mouse, an iPhone.
With his first London show for 10 years, young British artist Hugo Wilson presents a broad spectrum of painting, sculpture, drawing and photography to explore faith and power via various systems of belief. Specifically, Wilson’s new works examine the way that art has been used throughout history to reinforce the power of certain ideologies.
Our 5 To See This Weekend reveals new perspectives in exhibitions across the world. From Florence Henri’s prominent (if later forgotten) role in the 20th-century disciplines of photography to Stephen McKenna’s response to his travels in modern Europe, we see a range of personal and technical development. Dawei Dong’s fascination with the beginning of things perfectly marks his solo debut in Hong Kong, whilst at the Camden Arts Centre Ruth Ewan discusses the French Rationalist Calendar in modern societies rejection of a nationwide religion.
In the run-up to the Aesthetica Art Prize 2015 exhibition, we speak to shortlisted artist Matt Parker about his piece The Cloud is More Than Air and Water. This video-sound installation offers an insight into the hidden connections between every-day technology and our environment. An audiovisual artist, Parker is interested in creating immersive experiences which comment on the acoustic ecology of modern living. His explorations into the data driven society captures the acoustic footprint of the internet and reflects on the existence of our ‘digital selves’.
The Museum of Modern Art in Buenos Aires is currently brimming with colour and kaleidoscopic shapes, the exhibition, Lysergic Argentina, filling one gallery with its psychedelic visions and The Theatre of Painting providing viewers with a playful exploration of geometric abstraction. The Theatre of Painting places works of modern and contemporary Argentine art alongside pieces by Sonia Delaunay (1885 – 1979). In doing so, it looks at modernity as though through a magnifying glass to reveal different forms of creation and spaces in which surprising narratives unfold. In order to avoid confining Delaunay to the labelled box of female artist in a European, modern and predominantly masculine setting, the exhibition proposes to align artists from contrasting contexts in order to focus on and draw connections between their ways of making.
For China’s biggest design fair, Carpenters Workshop Gallery will present a selection of work by Sebastian Brajkovic, Humberto & Fernando Campana, Ingrid Donat, Stuart Haygarth and Studio Drift.
Jason Rhoades, Four Roads at ICA Philadelphia was the artist’s first major exhibition at an American museum, revealing his sprawling environments made from a wide range of materials. Now, for the first time in the UK, a major exhibition of work by Rhoades will open at the BALTIC, Gateshead, on 6 March. In celebration of this retrospective, we take a look at Organised Chaos from Aesthetica Issue 54.
Exhibit Be is an artistic endeavour of epic proportions. Helmed by artist and film-maker Brandan “BMike” Odums, with logistical support from freelance editor and web-content creator Lydia Nichols and arts and museum curator Lana Meyon, it is an ode to how art disturbs the waters of our contentment without cornering us with guilt. Located in Algiers, a quiet suburb of New Orleans across the Mississippi river from the downtown core, Exhibit Be, a collaboration of 30 plus artists, transformed the abandoned Woodlands Apartment Complex, a five building, five-story apartment complex, into a giant street art installation.
Former student of Ira Sachs and previously known for her cult web series, The Slope, and short film, Nose Job, Desiree Akhavan is set to be one of the emerging stars of 2015. Playing a character in the fourth season of Girls, and cited as the “new Lena Dunham,” Desiree Akhavan now brings to the screen her debut feature film Appropriate Behaviour.
The Aesthetica Art Prize is a celebration of excellence in art from across the world and offers artists the opportunity to showcase their work to wider audiences. Now in its eighth year, the Aesthetica Art Prize exhibition and anthology unites a dynamic selection of emerging and established international practitioners. This year’s longlist of artists includes Chilean-born practitioner Carolina Redondo.
This March Dovecot Studios opens a new exhibition of work from Norwegian visual artist and musician Magne Furuholmen. After visiting Dovecot Tapestry Studio in 2013, Furuholmen set about producing a a new unique woodcut print design for a tapestry entitled Glass Onion. The exhibition, Peeling a Glass Onion, also features music, film, printmaking and large-scale ceramics. We speak to Furuholmen about his move into tapestry and how Dovecot inspired the new work.
Walking Legs, is one of Parisian photographer Guy Bourdin’s most loved campaign series, commissioned initially by French shoe designer – and longstanding friend, collaborator, client – Charles Jourdan. Shot against quintessentially English home, town and country landscapes, this high-end 1979 campaign is surely an unusual one – comprising a range of disembodied mannequin legs which appear to be strutting along proudly in their glimmering designer heels.
The 11th edition of Ceramic Art London, the leading international showcase for contemporary ceramics, returns to London this year to take over the Royal College of Art.
Since 2011 Sky Academy Arts Scholarships (previously Sky Arts Futures Fund) have supported five promising artists under 30 annually with a £30,000 bursary and mentoring opportunities. The Scholarships aim to release the financial and second-job shackles of life as a young artist and provide an opportunity for each to take their practice to the next level with the help of dedicated mentors in their field. Last year’s Scholars were visual artist James Lomax, dancer and choreographer Eleesha Drennan, theatre designer David Shearing, jazz drummer and composer Ollie Howell and creative producer Tom Mcdonagh.
Grace Schwindt’s Only a free individual can create a free society is a captivating feature-length film installation currently in place at Site Gallery, Sheffield. Running until 28 February, the piece has been co-commissioned by the gallery and explores the radical left-wing politics of Germany in the 1960s-1970s. Within the gallery, the set was simplistic – a single road mapped out in black material, with white either side of it, set against the distinctive backdrop of a city skyline. The words of the feature were spoken in unison by no more than a handful of actors dressed in lavish and bizarre costume. At times, it seemed to channel a shared consciousness of society, yet, at others, a mere singular voice. The collective vs. the individual played throughout the show, which examined a foreign society to our own. The chant itself sounded magical, as though it were a séance, and now and then a new character would speak once again.
This week’s 5 To See features work from the internationally renowned, the critically acclaimed, the culturally overlooked, and promising newcomers. Mima presents the fine art of David Lynch, charting a relationship with names and identity which has come up time and again in his filmography. Belgian designer Dries van Noten invites visitors to explore his creative inspirations at the MoMu in Antwerp. Meanwhile, the work of Georges Noël is on display at the Musée d’Art Moderne, paying tribute to the Béziers-born artist.
Carriageworks is a fitting space to house the grand structures created by artist Zhang Huan (b. 1965) in his current exhibition, Sydney Buddha (2015). As viewers make their way down the concrete decline and through the entrance of the large glass doors, they are greeted by two structures standing at more than five metres tall. Made of two pieces, one is an aluminium structure acting as a mould for the second piece, which is a composition of more than 20 tonnes of incense ash. The pristine aluminium sculpture sits facing its slowly disintegrating opposite – a scene that reflects the confronting essence of time.
Victoria Miro, London, will be showcasing a selection of international artists at Art Basel Hong Kong from 15-17 March. Exhibiting artists include Yayoi Kusama, Grayson Perry and Isaac Julien. The newest Art Basel show, the Hong Kong edition features a wide variety of galleries from Asia, Asia-Pacific and the rest of the world.
The Tell-Tale Heart, a group exhibition curated by Pilar Corrias (London), Leo Xu Projects (Shanghai) and K11 Art Foundation, will open on 13 March to coincide with Art Basel’s Hong Kong fair. The show will feature new works from a line-up of internationally acclaimed artists, including Rirkrit Tiravanija and Ian Cheng.
Antonio Berni: Juanito y Ramona showcases more than 150 works of one of Argentina’s most dynamic and acclaimed artists of the 20th century. Berni was a well-known public figure by the end of his life, and this exhibition – a collaboration between the MALBA and the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston – gives us a clear understanding as to why Berni’s work has transcended art history and entered Argentina’s national folklore.
Argentine author and theater director, Mariano Pensotti, is best known for creating theatre that explores the tension between fiction and reality. The director is heralded as one of the most important experimental directors and writers in Argentina, who creates theatre written for the stage as well as site-specific performances for public places.
Yah-Leng and Arthur are the co-founders of Foreign Policy. Together, they are a think tank based in Singapore that crafts, realises and evolves brands with a creative and strategic deployment of ideas narrated by various appropriate media. The two of them are due to speak at ING Conference, Dubai, 27 – 28 March. ING is a creative community that connects industry professionals to instigate positive change. Since 2012, the ING Conference has hosted talks and workshops with leading international creatives, designers and entrepreneurs. We speak to Foreign Policy ahead of the two-day event.
The FORMAT biennale, one of the UK’s leading international contemporary festivals of photography, celebrates its 10th anniversary this year and will bring together top contemporary photography under the curatorial theme of EVIDENCE. Rivalling international peers, FORMAT champions photography from all over the world and introduces new talents to the UK; this year the festival will show artists from North America, Europe, Scandinavia, Russia, India, China, South East Asia and Eastern Europe in the historic city of Derby.
The Hayward Gallery has put on a brave set of displays curated by seven artists, who each look at elements of British history from 1945 to the present day. Running until 26 April, the central part of the exhibition is deeply political. This section of the show openly and proudly displays a fusion of art with contemporary politics. “Ulster is Protestant” and “We stand by the IRA” are just two statements Conrad Atkinson included in his piece Northern Ireland 1968 – May Day 1975 (1975-76). In 126 photographs and statements typewritten onto orange, white and green card, Atkinson takes the visitor on a journey through the “troubles” where Catholic and Protestant both uphold their political campaigns through graffiti on the streets of Northern Ireland. One anonymous statement that stands out is: “Northern Ireland has a problem for every solution”. This display highlights the idea that art should create questions, and ask the viewer to explore.
Experimental video and still photography artist, Adam Magyar is now showing for the first time outside of Europe and Asia, with various works including six videos, images from his Stainless series, and new prints from the Urban Flow series.
This exhibition bridges the gap between the two figures Ricardo Brey sees within himself: the historical artist working at a critical time in the history of Cuban art; and the highly contemporary artist who lives and works in Flanders, whose artworks discuss the widespread consumption of slick, mass-produced imagery.
It is difficult to write about Trove at the Irish Museum of Modern Art in Dublin, without first working outwards from the old military hospital it is housed in. Before casting one’s eye over the river Liffey as it drifts gently through the city then north to the mountains and southbound towards the Irish Sea. Like lines of lineage and age on the trunk of a felled tree, Trove marks boundaries in landscape and history from the eastern tip of the island as it faces Europe to the west looking outward to America. The Irish contemporary artist, Dorothy Cross, was invited to select artefacts and works housed in the national collections at the National Museum of Ireland, the National Gallery of Ireland, the Irish Museum of Modern Art and the Crawford Gallery in Cork.
For its second exhibition, Mazzoleni Art, London, welcomes a retrospective of Italian artist Agostino Bonalumi’s innovative work. The collection serves not only as a comprehensive study of Bonalumi’s enduring artistic interests; namely the importance of aesthetic and form but also signifies an important step in reinforcing the artist’s reputation on the international art scene. Indeed, the exhibition coincides with the international presentation of a large scale monograph, Bonalumi Sculptures; a collaboration between Mazzoleni gallery and the artist’s estate.
This weekend’s 5 To See reflects on photography, looking at several large-scale exhibitions as well as more personal and subjective projects. Tate St Ives presents its largest display of photography, spanning several continents and decades to chart the development of Modern Art practises. João Maria Gusmão and Pedro Paiva present a Western African voodoo ritual from the perspective of the performers, whilst Renzo Martens questions the ethical integrity of Western journalists documenting African poverty. The CAM Houston blurs lines of performance and real world encounters, and Iveta Vaivode connects with her family home on a personal journey.
The international Kontinent Photography Awards are now open for entries. The competition honours the best of the photography world, providing global recognition and new opportunities for artists. In previous years, Kontinent has received submissions numbering in the thousands from more than 100 countries. Every year top professionals within industry come together to select the best photographers of the year. There are six main categories for the awards, incorporating Advertising, Fine Art, Editorial/Documentary and Nature.
Artists Lisa Wright, Emma Vidal, Penny Byrne, Aaron Smith and Henry Hussey reference historical imagery and objects in a selection of new works, ranging photography and painting to porcelain fig-urines, charcoal and pencil sketches to bronze sculpture.
From the glossy veneer of the pages of Vogue to the polished presentation of fine art, Alistair O’Neill and Shelly Verthime galvanise the work of Guy Bourdin within the galleries of Somerset House in Image Maker. Bourdin was the first photographer to present a fashion item through a crafted, complex narrative that is at once provocative, shocking, exotic and ominous. Truly legendary in his image making, Bourdin’s works were uncanny and mysterious, full of violence and charged with sexuality and surrealism.
Four artists reconfigure and manipulate the conventional idea of photography using strange new processes and transforming traditional methods in a new group show at Vitrine, London. A nostalgic exhibition, this collection of works looks back to the traditions of the medium with an incredibly contemporary eye.
Performance group Cirque Eloize mixes acrobatics, juggling, cyr wheel and German wheel performances. The company are due to tour the UK with their visually arresting Cirkopolis, a stylish and sophisticated production, full of awe-inspiring acts. We speak to performer Ashley Carr ahead of the opening tonight at Sadler’s Wells’ Peacock Theatre. Carr, who the Jerwood Award and founded his own company Kicking The Moon, talks us through the creation process and the pros and cons of performing in different spaces.
Presenting large-scale works from the 1980s, this exhibition surveys the beginning stages of influential American artist Barbara Kruger. Her black and white photographs are overlaid with boldly printed provocative captions such as “don’t buy us with apologies” and “we are your circumstantial evidence” to examine power, identity, gender and sexuality. These texts juxtapose their accompanying imagery to, as she explains, “question the seemingly natural appearance of images.”
Luc Tuymans returns to David Zwirner, London, for the second time with a new body of work, The Shore. Drawing upon a diverse cross-section of subjects including a Japanese cannibal, footage from a British World War II film and portraits by Henry Raeburn, Tuymans’ work silently glides from subject to subject. However, the longer the viewer spends with the paintings, the more you are forced to confront topical socio-cultural and historical issues.
Based in Auckland New Zealand, Kenneth Merrick’s work orbits around drawing, painting and digital/analogue media. Merrick graduated with a Bachelor of Design and Visual Arts, Unitec, Auckland in 2012 and completed a Bachelor of Music, University of Auckland in 2004. Over the past five years his works have featured in a variety of exhibition settings and spaces in New Zealand, and overseas. Through image making Merrick seeks to convey perspectives that form a basis for a type of visual thinking, underpinned by explorations into cultural experience, speculative spaces, and myth. The resulting work attempts to further hack and refract historical and contemporary paradigms, via unique and fragmented view-points filtered through Merrick’s European, Tongan, and Maori heritage.
Encounters, comprising of 20 large-scale projects by artists from across Asia and beyond, opens to the public on 15 March. A sector of Art Basel‘s Hong Kong show, this year’s edition of Encounters will present artworks from a wide selection of countries including Indonesia, Germany and the United States.