A group show that proposes a dialogue between historical and contemporary sculpture, attempting to draw a line between a lost past, a sensuous present and an imagined future has to work hard to justify its audacious blurb. This pre-emptive strike on the legendary Lisson Gallery’s 50th birthday delivers an enchanting prophecy and a celebration in an exhibition that easily tops the list of the year’s commercial gallery group shows.
Bloomberg New Contemporaries returns this November to the ICA and will include works by 46 participants. Last year’s edition was immensely successful, attracting over 42,000 visitors and highlighting the exhibition as the place to discover the best emerging artists. With over 1,500 submissions, the selectors, Ryan Gander, Chantal Joffe and Nathaniel Mellors, had the tough job of picking an outstanding selection of art from the most promising artists coming out of UK art schools.
AV Festival 14: EXTRACTION takes place 1-31 March 2014 at venues across the North East of England, including mima (Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art), Sage Gateshead, BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, Tyneside Cinema, NGCA (Northern Gallery for Contemporary Art), Star and Shadow Cinema, Laing Art Gallery and other spaces to be announced. A biennial event, the Festival is thematically curated to engage audiences with current ideas across contemporary art, film, music and wider society. This year’s event features new commissions, UK premieres, solo exhibitions, group shows, concerts and film screenings by international and nationally renowned artists.
Based in London, Paul Fryer utilises electronic media and sculpture to create installation pieces in unexpected exhibition sites. He presented his first solo show in 2005, Carpe Noctum, at Trolley Gallery, London and has gone on to show work all over the world. Glasstress: White Light / White Heat is a Collateral Event of the 55th Venice Biennale and combines the work of 50 artists, including Fyer among others, such as, Mat Collishaw, Tracey Emin, Cornelia Parker and many more. The exhibition will be on display at The Wallace Collection and Fashion Space Gallery in London from 27 November until the end of February. Aesthetica speaks to Fryer about his involvement in the project and his practice as a whole.
First snow has fallen in some parts of the UK and the arrival of the winter freeze has sent the crowds scurrying in from the cold. This weekend is therefore a great time to make the most of the slightly quieter streets and go on an adventure exploring the very best art and culture on offer whilst others hibernate away at home. Whether it’s a hot blast of colour or a quiet space of reflection you need to blow the winter cobwebs away, here are our tips for how you might like to pass this chilly Saturday and Sunday.
3 am can be an extraordinary hour when some fear ghosts and monsters are on the prowl, when animals feel able to move without human detection and the young feel able to express themselves freely. The Bluecoat’s latest exhibition, 3 am: wonder, paranoia and the restless night brings together the work of 22 artists whose work explores this nocturnal hour, capturing and commenting on the activity of those who utilise its time.
Tangier-based artist and filmmaker, Yto Barrada (b.1971) probes into the material history and visual culture of her hometown in this multi-layered exhibition of films, artworks, posters and ephemera, on display at the Walker Art Center from 21 November until 18 May. Combining documentary strategies with a metaphoric approach to imagery in her photographic, film, and sculptural work, Barrada’s art is committed to exploring Tangier’s rich cultural history, which has been long been rooted in the collective imagination, eternally romanticised and immortalised in film and literature.
The Marian Goodman Gallery in New York presents a major solo show of Thomas Struth’s photographic art from 10 January to 22 February 2014. Struth studied at the Academy of Fine Arts, Düsseldorf. His work was recently exhibited for a major travelling retrospective that included the Museu Sarralves, Portugal, the K20 Kunstsammlung Nordhein-Westfalen, Düsseldorf, the Whitechapel Gallery, London, and the Kunsthaus Zurich in Switzerland (2010 – 2012).
The influence of Surrealism is as wide and varied as Surrealism itself. This was always likely – Surrealism was configured to swallow up anything anybody could deem as good by its designed combination of precision and vagueness in praising “the imagination”. It seems to have been so successful in this that “Surrealist” has basically become a synonym for “imaginative”; as though people weren’t imaginative before 1924. Either that, or people mean “looks a bit like Dalí”. It is possible it coined a word to draw together disparate things. So the wide influence of Surrealism on what art looks like, broad church that it was, takes an odd turn when we think of these artists: Calder and Melotti, currently showing at the Ronchini Gallery.
The agriculture of sub-Saharan Africa and the labour of everyday life on the land is brought into focus in this new body of work from Jackie Nickerson, on display at Brancolini Grimaldi from 22 November to 25 January. Creating photographs stamped with the realities of farming life, yet shot through with an element of the absurd as faces disappear and shrubbery replaces personalities, Terrain makes a point of emphasising the role of agriculture in defining African culture and society.
Although the show presents objects that span the 20th century and move onto contemporary works, there is nothing chronological about the display. The curators must have felt that linear chronology would somehow be anti-surrealist in its conception and not conducive to liberating the viewer from rationality.
Ruth Campbell became the tenth winner of the annual Sproxton Award for Photography, announced at the London College of Communication’s MA Photography Final Show on 14 November. The prize was set up in memory of Andrew Sproxton who, in 1972, together with Val Williams, created the Impressions Gallery of Photography in York, one of the first specialist photography galleries in the UK and Europe.