September 30, 2011

Abstraction at Istanbul Biennial 2011

Istanbul Biennial Group Exhibition: Untitled (Abstraction)  Lygia Clark, Charlotte Posenenske, Theo Craveiro, Cevdet Erek, Joana Hadjithomas and Khalil Joreige

The exhibition Untitled (Abstraction) is inspired by Felix Gonzalez-Torres’s “Untitled” (Bloodwork—Steady Decline) (1994). This minimalist piece, a drawing of a grid with a diagonal line reaching from the top-left corner to the lower-right corner, represents the gradually failing immune system of a patient with HIV. This group exhibition gathers works that subvert pure abstraction and the high-modernist grid by bringing in political and bodily themes.

Crab Beast (Bicho Caranguejo), 1960
30 x 16 x 1 cm
Courtesy the Cultural Association “The World of Lygia Clark”
Photograph: Nuno Franco de Souza

In her proposals, the Brazilian artist LYGIA CLARK (Belo Horizonte, Brazil, 1920-1988, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) anticipated the Untitled (Abstraction) theme. The sculpture series Bicho (Beast) made with hinged sheets of aluminum, which Lygia Clark began to work on in 1959, strongly exhibits the artist’s anxiety toward form and her radical views on the social role of art. The Bicho (Beast) that is presented in the Istanbul Biennial create a multisensory experience, turning the viewer into an active participant.

Square tubes, from the series DW, 1986
Corrugated cardboard
152 x 107 x 30 cm
Central Station Frankfurt a.M. 1989 
Courtesy estate (Burkhard Brunn) 
Photography: Burkhard Brunn

In close proximity to Lygia Clark are the DW (1967) sculptures made by the German artist CHARLOTTE POSENENSKE (Wiesbaden, Germany, 1930-1985, Frankfurt, Germany). Made of corrugated cardboard in abstract geometric shapes, they are exhibited differently every week.


Formicary—Visible Idea [Formigueiro―Idéia Visível], 1956/2010
100 x 100 x 15 cm
Courtesy the artist

The young Brazilian artist THEO CRAVEIRO (born in 1983 in Sao Paulo, lives in Sao Paulo, Brazil) decided to create a new system to question whether art has a system or not. Formigueiro—Ideia Visivel (Formicary—Visible Idea, 1956/2010) departs from a key historical painting Idéia Visivel (Visible Idea, 1956) from the Brazilian concrete period by Waldemar Cordeiro, appropriating the design of its black grid over a white background as a glass wall relief containing a living ant farm.

Sounding Dot, 2010
Mono sound, loudspeaker, amplifier, CD player, and paint, 1:24 min.
60 x 60 x 0.4 cm
Courtesy of the artist and Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary, Vienna, Austria 
From Sky Ornamentation with 3 Sounding Dots and Anti-Pigeon Net (So3sdapn) commissioned by Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary, Vienna, Austria and Vehbi Koç Foundation, Istanbul, Turkey

CEVDET EREK (born 1974, Istanbul, lives and works in Istanbul) Anti-Pigeon Net (2010) grew out of an installation he made at the courtyard of Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary in Vienna, using anti-pigeon netting and sound. The abstract grid calls forth cleanliness and sanitization, through a scatological counter-reference.

180 Seconds of Lasting Images (2006) by the Beirut-based artists JOANA HADJITHOMAS and KHALIL JOREIGE appears to be a large-scale white monochrome structure, but it is actually composed of 4500 photographs, which upon closer inspection reveal themselves as movie fragments in which some figures can be discerned. The material was developed from a film that belonged to Joreige’s uncle, which the artists found 16 years after the uncle’s kidnapping (he is still missing) during the Lebanese Civil War in 1985. They produced the video by printing every frame of the movie.

See also our previous post: Istanbul Bienniale overview
Find detailed information about this group exhibition at

September 29, 2011

Istanbul Biennial 2011 overview

Through November 13, 2011
The 12th Istanbul Biennial opens its doors to art lovers on September 17, 2011 and remain on view until November 13, 2011. Istambul Biennial 2011 is transforming Istanbul into an art platform.
The 12th Istanbul Biennial, ranked among the most important European art events of this year along with the Venice Biennale,is realized under the curatorship of Adriano Pedrosa and Jens Hoffmann. The title is Untitled (12th Istanbul Biennial), 2011.
2011 Istambul Biennial is composed of five group exhibitions and more than 50 solo exhibitions, with a total of more than 500 works. The venue is Antrepo 3 and 5.
The 12th Istanbul Biennial opened its doors to press on September 15, with an official opening ceremony and a press conference. Bülent Eczacıbaşı, chairman of the board of İKSV, gave the opening speech of the ceremony. He said:
“The Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts organized the first Istanbul Biennial in 1987. Since then, Istanbul and the biennial have grown, evolved, and gained prominence in concert with one another. The biennial has contributed to the development of Istanbul as a capital of culture and the arts, and Istanbul has received the biennial with open arms, continually renewing the energy of this event with its rich history, contemporary dynamism, and potential. In 1999, the biennial reached 40 thousand people; in 2009 more than 100,000 art enthusiasts attended the biennial and its related events. At the beginning of the 2000s, the number of private museums in our city could be counted on one hand; now we count them by the dozens. Moreover, the number of exhibitions taking place in Istanbul, home to more than 100 art galleries, is rising steadily every year. This increase in the production and consumption of art over the last decade fills us with hope for what we can achieve in the decade ahead. In 2023, when we celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Turkish Republic, Turkey aims to be one of the world’s top 10 economies. Our hope is that our cultural industry enjoys a share of this targeted economic growth. A society that reads more books, visits more exhibitions, goes to more concerts and increases its involvement in art and culture activities is a society that will achieve all kinds of targets more easily and quickly.”
Mustafa V. Koç, chairman of the board of Koç Holding, also spoke at the official opening ceremony and press conference on behalf of Koç Holding, which has undertaken the sponsorship of the Istanbul Biennial through 2016.
The official opening ceremony of the 12th Istanbul Biennial was presented by Defne Halman. Thank-you plaques for their contributions to the biennial were given to the Culture and Tourism Ministry of the Republic of Turkey; the pioneer sponsor of İKSV, Eczacıbaşı Holding; the official airline, Turkish Airlines; the official communication sponsor, Vodafone; the official carrier, DHL Express; Özsoy İnşaat for the implementation of the architectural design; the theme sponsors Hitay Yatırım Holding AŞ and Zorlu Center; and Istanbul Biennial Sponsor Koç Holding. The plaques were presented by Bülent Eczacıbaşı, chairman of the board of İKSV.
After the press conference, curators Jens Hoffmann and Adriano Pedrosa spoke, together with Istanbul Biennial Director Bige Örer, and the curators guided a tour of the biennial exhibition. The biennial artists were present with their work during the press visit.
Besides famous names from the art and business world, more than 4,000 guests, including critics, curators, museum and gallery administrators from international art communities, and up to 400 press members from 50 countries participated in the press conference.
Untitled (12th Istanbul Biennial), 2011
The visual identity and the title of the 12th Istanbul Biennial—Untitled (12th Istanbul Biennial), 2011—reference the work of the Cuban American artist Felix Gonzalez-Torres (1957–1996), one of the most important artists of the contemporary era.
During his life, Gonzalez-Torres exhibited in many solo and group exhibitions internationally, including the 5th Istanbul Biennial, curated by Rosa Martínez. His innovative artistic language was a source of inspiration for the researches conducted for the 12th Istanbul Biennial. But, although his presence is felt in the biennial’s title, themes, and visual identity, none of his works will be exhibited in the 12th Istanbul Biennial.
The curators of the 12th Istanbul Biennial, to remain in line with Gonzalez-Torres’s idea of “Untitled”, developed a critical position toward preconceived notions of the exhibition and did not declare the list of participating artists until the opening. Thus they proposed to prevent any possible pre-consumption of the exhibition. The 12th Istanbul Biennial aims to draw attention to the importance of the exhibition, the primary format of artistic and curatorial expression, in response to the mentality today favoring ancillary events and programming, especially in a biennial context. The biennial is precisely installed in a single, carefully constructed space, Antrepo 3 and 5, in a manner that privileges the display and juxtaposition of the artworks.
RYUE NISHIZAWA PORTRAIT - Photograph by Nishizwa Takashi Okamoto
The exhibition venue of the 12th Istanbul Biennial is Antrepo 3 and 5, which has hosted the biennial several times since the 4th Istanbul Biennial. The architectural design Office of Ryue Nishizawa transformed the site, dramatically, using steel and drywall constructions to create different-size rooms. During the design process, which started in September 2010, Ryue Nishizawa developed a method to allow visitors to immediately differentiate between the group exhibitions and the solo presentations. The group exhibitions’ walls are painted gray, while the solo presentations’ walls are painted white.
RYUE NISHIZAWA, although still in his 40s, is acknowledged as one of the most important architects in the world today. He founded SANAA (Sejima and Nishizawa and Associates) in 1995 with the architect Kazuyo Sejima. He has maintained the Office of Ryue Nishizawa since 1997. SANAA has won the Pritzker Architecture Prize and the Golden Lion Award of the Venice Architecture Biennial. The firm’s projects have included the New Museum of Contemporary Art (2007) in New York, USA; the 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art (2004) in Kanazawa, Japan; and boutiques of Christian Dior and Prada in Japan.
The five group exhibitions of the 12th Istanbul Biennial are titled Untitled (Abstraction), “Untitled” (Ross), “Untitled” (Passport), Untitled (History), and “Untitled” (Death by Gun). Each departs from a specific work by Felix Gonzalez-Torres. More than 50 solo presentations carry further the discussions broached by the group exhibitions.
For the 12th Istanbul Biennial, Koç Holding continues its biennial sponsorship, which started in 2007 and encompasses five biennials. Zorlu Center and Hitay Yatırım Holding AŞ contribute as theme sponsors.
Arçelik AŞ, Divan İstanbul, Polisan Boya Sanayi, and Ticaret AŞ take part as institutions contributing to the biennial.
Many international institutions, especially The Ford Foundation, the US Department of State, Mondriaan Foundation, British Council, The Visual Arts Board of the Australia Council for the Arts, and the Brazilian Ministry of Foreign Affairs highly contribute to the achievement of the 12th Istanbul Biennial.
The Biennial Companion publication of the 12th Istanbul Biennial includes interviews between the curators and the artists, full explanations of the themes, and full-color photographs. The Biennial Catalogue publication includes texts focusing on the subjects of the exhibition and visuals from the installation. Both are published by the Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts and Yapı Kredi Publishing with the contribution of Vehbi Koç Foundation.
Besides these contributing institutions, Banvit AŞ, Canan Pak, Ford Otomotiv Sanayi AŞ, Grupanya İnternet Hizmetleri İletişim Organizasyon Tanıtım ve Pazarlama AŞ, Koçtaş, Polimeks Holding, Sema-Barbaros Çağa, Tekfen Eğitim Sağlık Kültür Sanat ve Doğa Varlıkları Koruma Vakfı, Türk Henkel AŞ, and United Colors of Benetton contribute to the biennial as special projects sponsors.
In addition to the institutions stated above, the 12th Istanbul Biennial is realized with the contribution of 21 leading business institutions as biennial supporters.
The 12th Istanbul Biennial is supported by the Promotion Fund of the Prime Ministry and the Culture and Tourism Ministry of the Republic of Turkey, the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality, and the Beyoğlu Municipality.
The Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts official sponsors are leading sponsor Eczacıbaşı Holding; official airline Turkish Airlines; official communication sponsor Vodafone; and official carrier DHL Express. Jon Sueda from Stripe has undertaken the publicity campaign and publications of the 12th Istanbul Biennial.

September 28, 2011

Not Vital Scultptures, Thaddaeus Ropac, Paris

Exhibition: Not Vital, Scultptures, Diao Su
Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, Paris

Through 15 October 2011

Piz Nair, 2011, coal
Courtesy Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, Paris

Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac in Paris is currently exhibiting works by Swiss artist NOT VITAL, whom the Galerie represented for the past 20 years.

Not Vital was born in 1948 in Sent (Switzerland), studied in Paris and moved to New York in 1974. Today he lives between New York, Graubünden in Switzerland and Beijing in China. His artistic career started in the early 1970s and he turned to sculpture in the early 1980s.

Through the years Vital continues to surprise his audience. This element of surprise is manifested in the exploration of different materials, people and places. Vitalʼs curiosity for the world can be observed in particular periods throughout his career: he has spent time with third-generation Venetian glass blowers in Murano, Tuareg silversmith tribesmen in Niger, papermakers in Bhutan.

In Vitalʼs current exhibition of new work we can see the influence of China, and specifically, Beijing. Since 2008 Vital has spent five months per year working in his studio in the Caochangdi district of Beijing. Here, he discovered exceptionally skilled and creative stainless steel craftsmen - Tongue is made in a foundry on the outskirts of Beijing. The stainless steel is crafted by hand, rather than cast. The complicated, arduous and lengthy process is an important part of the work, resulting in a smoothly polished surface that is highly reflective.

Although Vital spends much time in Beijing, his Swiss roots prevail at certain creative moments. Piz Nair (Romantsch for ʻBlack Mountainʼ) consists of a mountain-shape carved into a block of Chinese coal. Piz Nair is one of the most famous mountains in the Engadine, the area that Not Vital is from. It is thought-provoking that the scale of a huge mountain is reduced to a relatively small sculpture, whereas the scale of the Tongue is vastly increased. The tension of scale, and the presentation of a somewhat topsy-turvy world, focuses the audienceʼs attention on material and form. Coal is unconventional as a material for sculpture, but takes on a political significance in the context of daily life in Beijing  - where coal is burnt across the city to provide fuel, often in dangerous and hazardous conditions. Lastly, the sculpting of a mountain – solid and strong – in a material that is brittle and fragile, is in keeping with Not Vitalʼs tendency towards the bizarre or surreal. 

The works in this show are varied in material and content, yet are held together by a strong sense of the artistʼs vision, striving to find  ever-new ways of expression and form-making. Working with different craftsmen and the influences of high and low culture in Beijing, Not Vital has created a sophisticated and captivating body of work with cerebral concerns and physical integrity. 

Text © Alma Zevi 2011

Upcoming exhibitions at the galerie:
Alex Katz, Face the Music, October 20 - November 19, 2011
Banks Violette, Nine Patriotic Hymns for Children, October 20 - November 19, 2011  (Drawing Space)
Robert Mapplethorpe, Curated by Sofia Coppola, November 25, 2011 - January 7, 2012
Nick Oberthaler, November 25, 2011 - January 7, 2012 (Drawing Space)

Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, Paris-Salzburg
7, rue Debelleeyme - 75003 Paris
Web site:

Illustration : les tentances actuelles. Un Best of chez Taschen

Un Best of des illustrateurs les plus en vue de la planète chez Taschen dans Illustration Now! Vol.4
illustration_now_4 Gabriel Moreno signe la couverture d’Illustration Now! 4, Taschen, 2011

La série Illustration Now! continue de vous proposer des œuvres contemporaines marquantes réalisées par une sélection d’illustrateurs de renom international. Taschen publie le quatrième volume d'Illustration Now! Le livre présente un best of de l’illustration et des illustrateurs avec un mélange de dessinateurs confirmés et néophytes qui travaillent avec un vaste éventail de techniques, 150 illustrateurs issus de 30 pays, avec des informations sur leur parcours professionnel et une sélection d’expositions. Vous y trouverez également deux introductions par les spécialistes Steven Heller et Bruno Porto, qui offrent leurs réflexions sur les tendances actuelles dans l’illustration, et la couverture porte une œuvre de Gabriel Moreno, réalisée tout spécialement pour cet ouvrage. Ce livre est une référence pour les graphistes, les professionnels de la création et les étudiants en illustration, mais aussi pour tous ceux qui apprécient le dessin et le langage visuel. Certains pourront regretter l’absence de tel ou tel artiste, mais cela est inévitable pour ce type d’exercice. Quoi qu’il en soit le choix des illustrateurs est pertinent et offre, comme dans les trois premiers volumes de cette série, un très riche panorama d’artistes et d’oeuvres d’art graphique.

anna-higgie_illustration4 ANNA HIGGIE
Sarah Cracknell (Saint Etienne), 2008, Plan B magazine

Illustration Now! 4 est édité par Julius Wiedemann. Né au Brésil, il y a passé son enfance. Après des études en design graphique et marketing, il s'installe à Tokyo où il travaille comme directeur artistique pour des magazines de design et d'art numérique. Depuis qu'il a rejoint TASCHEN, il a créé la collection d'art numérique avec des titres comme Illustration Now!, Advertising Now, Logo Design et Brand Identity Now!

Journalists Attacked, 2010, Parte y Contraparte magazine

Architectural Paintings Exhibit at Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza and Fundacion Caja Madrid

Exhibition: Architectural Paintings. From Renaissance to 18th Century Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza and Fundacion Caja Madrid
Curators: Delfin Rodriguez and Mar Borobia, 18 October 2011 - 22 January 2012

Architectural Paintings. From Renaissance to 18th Century at the Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza and Fundacion Caja Madrid in Spain comprise a group of more than 140 paintings from the Renaissance to the 18th century that depict buildings and cities, either as the principal motif or as the background for the depiction of other subjects. The exhibition will aim to show the visiting public the development of these architectural motifs or settings and the wide range of issues that contributed to the independence of the genre in the 18th century.


Attributed to Girolamo Da Cotignola (Girolamo Marchesi) (Cotignola, 1470/1480 – Roma, 1531), Vista de une ciudad, 1520
View of a City, 1520 – 67 x 50 cm
Pinacoteca Nazionale, Ferrara

Painted buildings were one of  the options  chosen by numerous artists  to emphasize  the scenes  and  episodes  depicted  in  their  paintings,  among  them  leading  painters  from  the Mediterranean world and northern Europe between the 14th and 18th centuries including Duccio di Buoninsegna, Canaletto, Giovanni Paolo Panini, Tintoretto, Gaspar van Wittel, Hubert Robert, Maerten van Heemskerck and Hans Vredeman de Vries. Curated by Delfín Rodríguez,  Senior  Professor  of Art History  at  the Universidad  Complutense, Madrid,  and Mar Borobia, Chief Curator of Old Master Painting at the Museo Thyssen‐Bornemisza, the exhibition brings  together works by  these  renowned artists, with outstanding  loans from private collections and museums around the world, among them Musei Vaticani, National Gallery of Art (Washington), Galleria degli Uffizi, Museo del Prado and Patrimonio Nacional. 

By  including  architectural  motifs  in  their  works,  artists  established  the  setting  for  the movement or position of the figures and provided them with a context that was credible in spatial, visual, historical, mythical,  legendary and imaginary terms. In addition, such works could become innovative painted architectural projects or eloquent fragments of structures that steered the viewer’s emotions and the narrative thread through the use of walls, windows etc. The  link between the painting of buildings and cities with travelling is another key theme in this exhibition, as is an analysis of the architectural ideas and solutions that these artists frequently presented in their works. 

Behind their apparent objectivity, painted structures – cities, palaces, temporary constructions, ruins and designs – conceal symbols, recollections, or forms of political and religious propaganda, in some cases of considerable complexity. The works of these artists, who became increasingly specialised, particularly in the 17th and 18th centuries, responded to demand from the religious and political authorities and from intellectuals. On occasions they painted fantastical buildings inspired by ancient and modern travellers’ accounts or by religious or secular texts. These were backdrops and buildings charged with sacred or political resonances and symbolism, transformed into expressions of wealth and luxury, eulogies of particular individuals, emblems of cities or nations or recollections or exaltations of triumphs and journeys or visits. In other cases these artists painted buildings under construction or ones contemporary with the painting, introducing the very process of building into the representation: machines, tools, workmen, etc. They also painted ruins, which in the case of religious scenes such as the Nativity or the Adoration of the Magi, referred to the destruction of a pagan past over which the “new  architecture” of Christianity arose. Similarly, the depiction of the classical architectural orders symbolised the new order of Humanism.

Painted buildings and settings were soon incorporated into the theory of representational systems, particularly those of perspective and architectural theory. Painting and architecture and their respective idioms thus began to express inherent tensions and conflicts through works that moved from painting to architecture and from planned or built architecture to painting. To paint buildings was a form of designing them and, conversely, to design and build them was a way of painting and adorning  the world, including the world represented on the two‐dimensional surface of the canvas. 

The exhibition is structured both chronologically and thematically. The first part, on display at the Museo Thyssen‐Bornemisza, spans the 14th to the 17th centuries, a period in which the painting of buildings and city views was considered a minor genre but in which these elements frequently appeared as the backgrounds to religious, historical and mythological scenes. The depiction of such elements would become increasingly important until it triumphed as an independent genre in the 18th century, which is the subject of the second partof the exhibition in the exhibition  space of Fundación Caja Madrid. It includes works by the great masters of the vedute, landscapes with ruins, capriccios etc.

Exhibition catalogue "Arquitecturas pintadas" published in Spanish.

Thyssen‐Bornemisza Museum, Madrid
Caja Madrid Fundacion

Paseo del Prado 8
28014 Madrid, Espana

September 24, 2011

Expo Photo Sladjana Stankovic, Regard non détourné, Maison d’Europe et d’Orient, Paris

Exposition Photographie : Sladjana Stankovic, Regard non détourné
Maison d'Europe et d'Orient, Paris

21 septembre - 3 octobre 2011


Photo © Sladjana Stankovic

A quel moment dans notre vie on bascule ? Qu’est-ce qui fait qu’on bascule ? Perte de ses repères, son travail, sa famille, son domicile, l’estime de soi, l’envie de construire. Comment un être humain en arrive à supporter tout ça ? Comment peut-on jamais s’accommoder de cette solitude, de ce déni du regard de l’autre comme égal, qui fait de vous celui dont on ne parle pas, dont on refuse de parler, dont on ne sait pas comment parler, qu’on ne sait considérer qu’avec distance ou appréhension, condescendance ou mépris ?

La ville. La rue. Lieux communs. Lieux de solitude contemporaine. Contemporaine comme la cruauté de nos sociétés incapables malgré les discours d’imaginer un vivre ensemble pour tous. Contemporaine comme le matérialisme ambiant, la dissolution du lien social, l’anonymat des grandes cités. Contemporaine comme le paradoxe de l’image : toute-puissante et banale, réelle et mensongère. L’image, pour moi, photographe, effrayante mais nécessaire.

Déclassés, oubliés, abandonnés… J’ai depuis longtemps ressenti le besoin de me confronter à toutes ces existences, de ne pas détourner le regard, que ce soit auprès d’ouvriers ou de mineurs, d’orphelins ou d’enfants des rues. Besoin de regarder, de voir, de parler. Besoin de révéler l’humain derrière la Machine. Pas pour plaindre ni pour juger. Mais pour chercher à comprendre, pour me confronter à mes peurs, à nos peurs.

C’est dans cet esprit que j’ai débuté ma recherche à l’automne 2010, dans les rues et dans les parcs, en allant simplement à la rencontre d’hommes et de femmes qui vivent à Paris aujourd’hui, comme moi, et qui pourtant restent le plus souvent invisibles ou font partie du « décor ». Ils vivent à l’extérieur. Extérieurs à nos vies « normales ». Ils sont dans la rue, ils nous regardent, plus que nous ne les regardons.

C’est dans la rue et les parcs que je souhaite montrer le résultat de ce travail, afin de bousculer le « décor » et faire se croiser les regards. Notre « décor » commun : la rue, doit être le lieu de cet échange. Je voudrais que les gens qui passent dans ces rues s’arrêtent devant les images et que leurs regards croisent ainsi, autrement, ces regards qu’on essaie généralement d’éviter.

Sladjana Stanković, Janvier 2011

BIOGRAPHIE : SLADJANA STANKOVIC est née en 1966 à Trstenik en ex-Yougoslavie. Elle vit et travaille à Paris depuis 2002. Photographe associée à la Maison d’Europe et d’Orient de 2007 à l'été 2011, elle est également photographe officielle de la BULAC (Bibliothèque universitaire des langues et civilisations). Elle a exposé ses photos à Paris à plusieurs reprises depuis 2002. Le thème principal de son travail est la relation entre l’être humain et son paysage urbain..

Entrée libre - Vernissage le 23 septembre à 19h

Maison d'Europe et d'Orient
3, passage Hennel - 75012 Paris
Site web :

Exposition complémentaire :

Sladjana Stankovic: Image, métal, poésie

Sur une année, Sladjana Stankovic a photographié des étudiants en chaudronnerie dans le 12e arrondissement de Paris au cours de leur réalisation d'un Oud monumental. La photographe a ainsi pu suivre “la transformation du métal travaillé par les élèves, ainsi que la transformation des élèves qui le travaillaient”.

Au Lycée Chennevière Malézieux,  33, av. Ledru Rollin, 75012 Paris
Ouverture : Lundi-Vendredi, 17h-19h

L'exposition de Sladjana Stankovic est programmée dans le cadre de la seconde édition du festival 12x12, résidences et parcours d'artistes dans le 12e arrondissement, du 21 septembre au 2 octobre 2011. Ce festival est organisé par Matière Première avec Le 100 - Atelier en commun, le SOCLE et la mairie du 12e arrondissement de Paris.

Sur le festival 12x12 : -

Exposition Pierre Buraglio, Historial, Péronne

Exposition : Buraglio, la guerre intime. Dessiner/Tracer à l'Historial, Péronne
12 octobre 2011 - 4 mars 2012 *


L’Historial présente la première rétrospective des œuvres de Pierre Buraglio sur le thème de la guerre. Elle regroupe en complément de quelques travaux anciens de l’artiste, ses créations nouvelles et inédites réalisées en contact avec la collection de l’Historial de la Grande Guerre lors de sa résidence au musée en 2011. Dans une seconde partie, carte blanche a été donnée à Pierre Buraglio pour exposer une sélection de dessins du musée choisis d’après ses coups de cœur.

Né en 1939, PIERRE BURAGLIO a été marqué par la Seconde Guerre mondiale et les récits familiaux sur la Grande Guerre. Aussi, il s’intéresse de près aux guerres depuis plusieurs années, tant à travers les souvenirs de sa petite enfance en 1939-1945, que les silhouettes des blockhaus sur les plages de l’Atlantique, le personnage de Birdy du film d’Alan Parker. Les violences des conflits n’ont cessé de le révolter et de l’inspirer. En 2004, il avait réalisé des séries d’estampes, J1, d’après ses mémoires familiales et personnelles (« J1 » désigne les coupons de rationnement pour les plus jeunes enfants - catégorie J1 - pendant la Seconde Guerre mondiale).

Lors de sa résidence à l’Historial de la Grande Guerre en 2011, la découverte du musée et de ses collections a ravivé en lui des souvenirs personnels  et enfouis. Découpées ou réunies, les silhouettes d’objets de guerre dessinés sur différents supports se mêlent à des symboles : la Croix Rouge, des initiales – la lettre K pour Karl Liebknecht, et la lettre R pour Rosa Luxembourg (voir l’affiche de l’exposition reproduite ci-dessus)… Il a ainsi créé une vingtaine d’œuvres, dont une série d’estampes autour de Rosa et Karl, telle une variation sur un même thème.

L’exposition présente parallèlement environ 60 dessins du fonds graphique de l’Historial retenus selon les coups de cœur de Pierre Buraglio : dessins d’artistes-soldats, célèbres ou non, croquis exécutés sur le front ou à l’arrière… Tous ont suscité en lui un regard à la fois critique et passionné. La présentation des dessins de 1914-1918 en vis-à-vis de l’œuvre créée, révèle l’art de Pierre Buraglio en une expression riche et nouvelle, un regard libre face à l’Histoire.

Buraglio, la guerre intime est réalisée en partenariat avec la galerie Catherine Putman (Paris) et l’Association des Conservateurs des Musées de Picardie, dans le cadre du programme Dessiner-Tracer conçu par l’Association des Conservateurs des Musées du Nord-Pas de Calais.

Catalogue d’exposition
Buraglio, la guerre intime. Dessiner-Tracer, Amiens : Association générale des Conservateurs des collections publiques de France, section fédérée de Picardie, 2011. 80 pages couleur, 50 illustrations. 12 euros.

Entrée libre
Ouvert tous les jours de 10h à 18h, dimanches et jours féries inclus
Vernissage le 11 octobre à 18h en présence de Pierre Buraglio.
* Attention ! Fermeture annuelle du musée du 17 décembre 2011 au 15 janvier 2012

Historial de la Grande Guerre
Château de Péronne
Péronne (Somme - Picardie)

September 22, 2011

Nick van Woert, Terra Amata, FIAF Fall Festival, Crossing the Line 2011

Nick van Woert, Terra Amata
FIAF Fall Festival, Crossing the Line 2011
FIAF Gallery, New York, September 17 - October 29, 2011

Untitled, 2011
© Nick van Woert, Courtesy of Yvon Lambert, Paris-New York

The FIAF Gallery presents Terra Amata, a specially commissioned installation by Brooklyn-based American sculptor NICK VAN WOERT. Known for transforming found objects and scavenged art materials into surreal, gravity-defying figures and shapes, the former architecture student borrows icons from the past and overlaps them with more familiar contemporary materials.

Untitled, 2011
© Nick van Woert, Courtesy of Yvon Lambert, Paris-New York

This new work makes visible a chronology of forms and ideas that reference the ideals of former generations, bridging classical sculpture to the Donner Party, Henry David Thoreau to Ted Kaczynski, and Pruitt-Igoe to 6221 Osage Avenue. The exhibition's title, Terra Amata, refers to a site in the South of France where it is believed that fire was used domestically for the first time.

Untitled, 2011
© Nick van Woert, Courtesy of Yvon Lambert, Paris-New York

The previous "Untitled" pictures are from Terra Amata work by Nick van Woert. A previous work of Nick van Woert, Poor Me, illustrates a quite similar concept but in a colorful version.


© Nick van Woert, Courtesy of Yvon Lambert, Paris-New York

© Nick van Woert, Courtesy of Yvon Lambert, Paris-New York

© Nick van Woert, Courtesy of Yvon Lambert, Paris-New York

NICK VAN WOERT, Damnatio Memoriae
© Nick van Woert, Courtesy of Yvon Lambert, Paris-New York

© Nick van Woert, Courtesy of Yvon Lambert, Paris-New York

NICK VAN WOERT, We're All in This Together
© Christian Patterson, Courtesy of Yvon Lambert, Paris-New York

© Nick van Woert, Courtesy of Yvon Lambert, Paris-New York

NICK VAN WOERT, Return to Nature
© Nick van Woert, Courtesy of Yvon Lambert, Paris-New York

FIAF Gallery 
French Institute Alliance Française
22 East 60th Street
New York, NY 10022

September 17, 2011

Poem. Thomas Feuerstein, 401contemporary, Berlin

Poem. Thomas Feuerstein
401contemporary, Fine art gallery, Tiergarten, Berlin, Germany
9 September – 15 October 2011

In POEM Thomas Feuerstein transgresses the border of language as a ‘mere’ medium of communication through a hypostatical transformation, which converts the breath of words into molecular sculptures. The linguistic constitution of art becomes the departure point for Feuerstein’s art as he connects language distillates and mixes them with the biochemical and social processes of life. Art speech is transformed into the very ingredient of art, which will be fed back into the physical metabolism of the speaking body in the form of liquor. 

Talking – distilling – drinking, that is the repetitive formula. The more art is spoken about, the more art is produced in the form of ice, water and alcohol. This leads to more drink and a more talkative speaker. 

When speaking, humid air escapes the mouth. In POEM. these ‘humid words’ hit the cold metal of the microphone, condense, freeze and form ice crystals. This ice layer grows thicker with each spoken sentence until dewdrops start falling down into a bowl, which triggers the functioning of a machine. Chemical processes commence; the water is heated to steam, pressed through earth, enriched with gases and electrically ionized. LA GROSSE DONDON, ‘the Fat Mother’, is the name of the part of the machine in which alcohol is produced without fermentation. Parallel to this process, another part of the machine uses the water to cook an Ursuppe (primal soup). 

Through endless circulation in the machinery, the liquids are transmuted into organic chemistry and are enriched with amino acids. LE PÈRE RÉPÉTITIF, ‘the Masturbating Father’, mixes his body fluids with the alcohol produced by ‘the Fat Mother’ to create a distillate which finally drips into bottles that will be archived in the bar cupboard ‘Genius in the bottle’. The labels of the bottles entrap us in multiple stories, evoking elixirs and essences inhabited by ‘Genies in the Bottle’. As enzymes and catalysts, they await the moment in which they will become effective in us, the moment in which their presence will initiate thoughts, images and actions, stir neuronal programs and transform realities. If in the beginning was the word, the genius in the bottle presides at the end, carefully creating new acts of talking with every gulp, and making sure that Art’s Circulation is forever energized.

THOMAS FEUERSTEIN’s (b. 1968) work is created in a variety of media and includes installations, environments, objects, drawings, paintings, sculpture, photography, video, audio dramas and internet art. Essential ingredients are the connection between linguistic and visual elements, the tracing of latent links between fact and fiction and the interlacing of art and science. 

Dr. Ralf-Otto Hänsel (Owner/Director)
Potsdamer Strasse 81 B 
Berlin (Tiergarten), Germany 

Performa 11 NYC Biennial of new visual art performance

November 1-20, 2011 in New York City

Performa's fourth visual art performance biennial, Performa 11, taking place November 1–20, 2011, throughout New York City. Performa 11 will feature performances by over 100 contemporary artists, including 10 new Performa Commissions by artists from around the world, as well as Performa Premieres and a host of new works by up-and-coming artists. This year’s biennial will be a thrilling showcase of live culture across all artistic disciplines, taking place at over 80 venues throughout New York City and presented in collaboration with a consortium of over 40 arts and cultural organizations.

Since Performa’s first biennial took New York City by storm in 2005, Performa has succeeded in presenting US first and only live visual art performance biennial. It has become one of the most anticipated art events in the country, having reached an international audience of over 70,000 people. With its biennial, Performa has not only changed the course of performance art history, but it has also caused a ripple effect around the world with museums, organizations, and festivals incorporating performance into their programming. Once again, Performa will present its series of Commissions and Premieres, many by artists who have never worked live before.

RoseLee Goldberg, Performa’s Founding Director and Curator, says, “In just five years, Performa has changed people’s minds about the very nature and meaning of artists’ performance. It has shown it to be an inspiring, profound, and accessible platform for exciting new ideas. Performa gives the public a highly selected but broad overview of performance in different disciplines, and, in just three weeks, viewers can come to understand the most important new developments in contemporary art and culture. It is thrilling to work with Performa artists to realize their extraordinary visions.”

Over its three-week run, the Performa Hub, designed by nOffice, will function as the biennial’s headquarters, offering a venue for special performances, screenings, panel discussions, bookshop, lounge, and a visitor information center. To program this year’s biennial, Performa will draw upon the rich cultural landscape of New York City by partnering with over 40 innovative local arts and cultural organizations. Working with this consortium of presenting partners, the biennial will create a lively dialogue through different disciplines working and thinking together. This collaboration creates an exciting cultural atmosphere; a unique cross-pollination think tank with an exchange of ideas, sharing of resources, and new connections between organizations and arts professionals.

Performa Board of Directors Chair Jeanne Greenberg Rohatyn adds, “Performa’s biennial will once again transform the landscape of New York and send a jolt of energy throughout the city. Performa 11 will provide a unique opportunity to see live events in all disciplines of the arts. Whether a modest performance or a large-scale production, there is always a sense that you have to be there.”

Along with presenting new work, Performa also provides a link to the past with historical and research themes focusing on performance history from the twentieth century. This year’s research theme, Language, Translation, and Misinformation will investigate the use of language in the field of performance by visual artists versus that of theater actors. The two historical themes, Russian Constructivism (1913-1940s) and Fluxus (1960s) — which both used language in a visual art context — along with the research theme will act as a point of departure for the work selected for the biennial program.

A central part of Performa’s biennials are its Commissions, which originate exciting new performances by visual artists, many of whom have never worked live before. Performa 11 will present 10 new Performa Commissions by both established and up-and-coming artists. Artists receive unparallel support to realize powerful, intellectually reflective, and artistically innovative works of live performance that vary widely in scale, taking place at venues from a small local bar to a large opera house.
“The Performa Commissions create a completely new idea of what it means to experience art,” states RoseLee Goldberg. “They give the viewer time to absorb an artist’s ideas, and give the artist time to express richly layered content. For many artists, their Performa Commissions were their first major projects and they have subsequently gone on to build new work based on the ideas explored in Performa. I am thrilled to be working with such a talented group of artists for Performa 11 and to watch each project close up, as it develops from concept to final production.”
To date, Performa has awarded twenty-four commissions. Beginning with the first Performa 05 Commissions by artists Jesper Just and Francis Alÿs, Performa has gone on to present Commissions by a wide range of artists including Isaac Julien (Performa 07); Nathalie Djurberg (Performa 07); Japanther (Performa 07); Sanford Biggers (Performa 07); Kelley Nipper (Performa 07); Adam Pendleton (Performa 07); Yvonne Rainer (Performa 07); Francesco Vezzoli (Performa 07); Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster (Performa 09); Omer Fast (Performa 09); Mike Kelley (Performa 09); Candice Breitz (Performa 09); Arto Lindsay (Performa 09); Yeondoo Jung (Performa 09); and Wangechi Mutu (Performa 09), among others.

To mark the tenth anniversary since RoseLee Goldberg commissioned SHIRIN NESHAT (b. 1957, Qazvin, Iran) to create her first live work, Logic of the Birds in 2001, the artist will present a new performance for Performa 11. Neshat’s Performa Commission will present live actors and projections in a riveting courtroom scene based on an earlier film by the artist, The Last Word (2003). The production features performances by Mohsen Namjoo, one of the most celebrated Iranian musicians living today, and Suheir Hammad, acclaimed New York-based Palestinian poet and performer.

The artist duo ELMGREEN & DRAGSET, consisting of Michael Elmgreen (b. 1961, Copenhagen, Denmark) and Ingar Dragset (b. 1969, Trondeim, Norway), will present a theatrical performance titled Happy Days in the Art World that draws references from Samuel Beckett’s play Happy Days (1961) and Sarah Thornton’s book Seven Days in the Art World (W. W. Norton & Company, 2008). The production will take place in the tradition of Beckett’s absurdist theater with a traditional proscenium stage with sets designed by the artists. Happy Days in the Art World will feature actors as well as a cameo by the artists, and will expand on the duo’s ironic take on contemporary art and the art world’s intrigue with celebrity.

For Performa 11, RAGNAR KJARTANSSON (b. 1976, Reykjavík, Iceland) will present a new live work titled Bliss, a six-hour long performance which will repeat the delirious final aria of Mozart’s opera The Marriage of Figaro. Kjartansson’s performance will replicate the lavishness of traditional opera with full orchestra, five opera singers, elaborate scenery, and period costumes. The artist himself will also sing. Bliss will continuously replay the two-minute musical, visual, and narrative pinnacle of the opera, approaching a euphoric state for performers and listeners alike.

IONA ROZEAL BROWN (b. 1966, Washington, DC) will extend the aesthetics and content of her paintings in her first work of live performance, battle of yestermorrow. In homage to the “onnagata” of Japanese Kabuki theater, the story will revolve around an epic battle between a princess and the guardians of her family’s gravesite. brown's wide ranging influences include myth-based genres like Kabuki and Noh theater, as well as ‘vogueing’ made famous in the Harlem ballroom scene of the 1960s. With performances by vogueing legend Benny Ninja with Javier Ninja, and an original sound score by brown.

Filmmaker and artist GUY MADDIN (b. 1956, Winnipeg, Canada) will present Tales from the Gimli Hospital: Reframed, a live re-imagining of his 1988 feature film of the same name. Tales from the Gimli Hospital tells the dreamlike story of the jealousy and madness that develops between two men sharing a hospital room in a remote Canadian village. This performance will literally reframe the film, adding new video projections on both sides of the original. A new score by composer Matthew Patton—featuring live foley sound effects by the Aono Jikken Ensemble and an all-female Icelandic ensemble (including members of Mum and Sigur Ros)—will be presented through an innovative, three-dimensional sound system specially created for the performance.

For Performa 11 SIMON FUJIWARA (b. 1982, London, England) will present a multi-part theatrical performance titled The Boy Who Cried Wolf. Weaving together new performance work with excerpts from a number of his previous acclaimed autobiographical performances and installations, Fujiwara will present a single epic narrative in three acts. From the search for a 136-year-old Amazonian explorer, to the secret sexual powers of Abstract Expressionist painting, Fujiwara’s absurd and labyrinthine stories will be brought to the stage with the aid of actors, musicians, and a mobile set.

Artists MIKA ROTTENBERG (b. 1976, Buenos Aires, Argentina) and JON KESSLER (b. 1957, Yonkers, NY) will present 7, an ongoing performance and installation that stretches from the urban landscape of New York to the savannahs of Africa. Mixing Kessler’s kinetic sculptures with Rottenberg’s absurdist videos, 7 will collapse film time and real time to create an intricate laboratory that channels body fluids and colors into a spectacle on the African savannah. Activated by live performers, the resulting video installation playfully addresses themes of spirituality, connection to the land, and the origin of the human species as well as questioning the place of performance, which can serve both as a substitute for spiritual ritual as well as an idiosyncratic spectacle.

Language and its poesy and rhythm are central to FRANCES STARK’s (b. 1967, Newport Beach, CA) engagement with the world. Borrowing words and phrases from novels, poems, and pop songs, she turns them into visual material that evoke the process of writing. Stark’s Performa Commission takes viewers on a semi-autobiographical stroll through the creative chaos of the artist’s life, working closely with a dancer and DJ from New York’s dance hall daggering scene. Written with close attention to the rhythm and pattern of language, Stark’s confessional performances are intimate and inclusive, presenting the facts of her life in a story that rises, falls, and diminishes like the chapters of a book.

MING WONG (b. 1971, Singapore) will take the archetype of the American actress as a point of departure for a new work activating the Museum of the Moving Image in Astoria, Queens. Inspired by the multicultural neighborhood of Astoria and its history as a home for major film studios, Wong will create a live multimedia performance of choreographed actions drawing from his research of female stars since cinema’s inception. Twenty-four actors of different ages, genders, ethnicities, and nationalities will participate, with each actor representing a single frame of a living filmstrip that will wind its way through the history of cinema via the architecture of the Museum of the Moving Image.


Performa Premieres program, launched in 2009 with artists including Tacita Dean, William Kentridge, and Joan Jonas, presents exceptional live works. Performa 11 Premieres will include:

ROBERT ASHLEY (b. 1930, Ann Arbor, Michigan)
For his Performa Premiere, Robert Ashley—a pioneer of opera-for-television and mixed media musical theater—will present That Morning Thing (1967), an opera in three acts for men’s and women's speaking voices and eight dancers. The opera premiered at the ONCE Festival in Ann Arbor, Michigan, in 1968 and was later presented at the Cross Talk Intermedia Festival in Tokyo, Japan, and the Center for Contemporary Music, Mills College, in Oakland, California. Two scenes from the opera—“Purposeful Lady Slow Afternoon” and “She Was a Visitor”—became legends when they were recorded in the 1970s.

BORIS CHARMATZ (b. 1973, Chambéry, France)
Choreographer Boris Charmatz  will re-conceive his groundbreaking Musée de la Danse (Dancing Museum) to premiere in New York City as part of Performa 11. A radical new way of looking at the history and future of dance through a unique live experience, Musée de la Danse: Expo Zéro is an exhibition comprised of completely empty rooms filled by the gestures, projects, bodies, stories, and dances which visitors will both see and imagine. Equal parts artistic project, institutional platform, and political proposition, Boris Charmatz’s Performa Premiere will have a lasting impact on the dance scene.

PERFORMA's Web site:

Major support for Performa 11 has been provided by Toby Devan Lewis, Lambent Foundation, and The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts. Additional support provided by The Dedalus Foundation, MAP Fund, a program of Creative Capital, supported by the Rockefeller Foundation, the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, the Danish Arts Council, the Office for Contemporary Art Norway, and the Performa Board of Directors, Performa Producers Circle, and the Performa Visionaries.

3 Kings exhibition at Subliminal Projects, Los Angeles, with Fab 5 Freddy, Lee Quinones, Futura 2000 curated by Patti Astor

3 Kings: Fred Brathwhaite aka Fab 5 FreddyLee Quinones and Leonard McGurr aka Futura 2000 with guest curator Patti Astor 
Subliminal Projects, Los Angeles, CA 
September 17 - October 8, 2011

3 KINGS - Image courtesy Subliminal Projects, Los Angeles, CA

Subliminal Projects in Los Angeles present its opening fall show 3 Kings. In classic NYC Subway Graffiti lore, a “King” is one who has achieved the most recognition for not only excellence in style but for the mark they have made on the culture. For over thirty years these “3 Kings” have been at the top of the game. This exhibition features their contemporary work created exclusively for this show along with classic pieces.


FAB 5 FREDDY (FRED BRATHWHAITE) is well known as Hip Hop’s ambassador to the world. His early work with Blondie on the hit “Rapture,” his creation of the seminal film “Wild Style” (directed by Charlie Ahearn) and his groundbreaking shows at the FUN Gallery brought graffiti art, rap music and break-dancing to the big stage. He would go on to co-produce and host “Yo, MTV Raps!”, the first show to regularly feature this culture on TV. Starting with his famous “Campbell’s Soup Can” subway car homage to Andy Warhol, Fred Brathwaite has been at the vanguard-- and his new work is no exception.

LEE QUINONES is generally recognized as "the greatest graffiti artist of all time". His ten whole car train with the Fabulous Five is a feat that has never been matched. Lee was also the creator of the graffiti writers’ creed, “If art is a crime, let God forgive me.” From his first show at the FUN Gallery in 1982 “Rust-O-LEEum”, he has never looked back, expanding his painting in extremely sophisticated ways while often including a touching look at the past. 

FUTURA 2000 (LEONARD MCGURR) had his first one man show at the FUN Gallery in 1981 and with his unique, ethereal style became one of the FUN’s most successful artists. He was instrumental in bringing graffiti art to Europe and beyond with rock group The Clash, painting back drops on tour and designing album art. Leonard McGurr aka Futura 2000 was also one of the first artists to work with manufacturers of transformer figures and clothing designs. His otherworldly new work is always eagerly awaited.

In 1981, PATTI ASTOR was famous as “The Queen of The Downtown Screen”. Having worked with such directors as Amos Poe, Jim Jarmusch and Eric Mitchell, she was starring in her 12th beyond low budget “No Wave Cinema” film, UNDERGROUND USA, (the punk rock Sunset Boulevard), enjoying a six month run as the midnight movie at the St. Mark’s Cinema. Fab 5 Freddy (Fred Brathwaite) had come downtown to check it out and so the “King of Uptown” met the “Queen of Downtown”.

Unbelievably at that time no one in the downtown Mudd Club scene had ever heard of graffiti art, break-dancing or rap. However, that was soon to change. With partner Bill Stelling, Patti Astor opened FUN GALLERY, the first art gallery in NYC’s East Village. From 1981-1985 this gritty tenement storefront was the epicenter of the early 80’s cultural explosion in art, music and dance. With Fab 5 Freddy leading the way, downtown punk rock met uptown hip-hop. English rockers The Clash and the Sex Pistols partied with Futura 2000 and the Rock Steady Crew, Keith Haring and Kenny Scharf traded tags with DONDI and LEE and Jean Michel Basquiat spun platters with Afrika Bambaata, everyone rocking to the box at the FUN, while renowned collectors, art historians and museum directors joined in the party.

Though the FUN Gallery’s duration was brief, the barriers had come down and the art world would never be the same. With longtime friends and veterans of the most important cultural explosion of the last thirty years, Subliminal Projects Gallery's exhibition 3 KINGS in Los Angeles, California, is also an homage to the NYC's FUN Gallery. 

Opening Reception: Saturday, September 17th, 2011 / 8-11pm

1331 W. Sunset Blvd 
Los Angeles, CA 90026
Tues - Fri, 11am- 6pm / Sat 12-5pm

Ceal Floyer @ 303 Gallery, New York

Ceal Floyer
303 Gallery, New York
September 16 - October 29, 2011

303 Gallery presents their third exhibition of new work by Ceal Floyer. Floyer’s varied installations employ sound, found objects and sculpture, often subtly manipulating common objects in the exploration of a more ambiguous, contextual reality.

In “Do Not Remove,” a single sign featuring a red diagonal cross bar and the words “Do Not Remove” is affixed to the wall. Surrounding the sign is a grid of small holes of the type that would be left in the wall after the removal of the sign itself. Only one sign remains, orphaned from its implied neighbors, an instruction as well as its own negation. This dry, vaguely maudlin humor is employed again in “Line Busy,” a wall of speakers playing the uninterrupted busy signal tone of a failed telephone call. The black line of speakers is a visual exponent of the pure tone itself, a seeming void from which a signal emanates. Floyer’s dialectical transformations engage the viewer in a sensory game, as the known, expected, and reified jarringly compete in an attempt to parse some sort of tangible certainty.

The exhibition also includes “Page 8680 of 8680,” a stack of 8,680 sheets 8.5 x 11 printer paper stacked as if to resemble a plinth that would normally support a sculpture or vitrine. Each sheet is imprinted with a number, from 1 through 8,680, an identifying marker of the logical atomism into which all objects break down. A wry send-up of minimalism, as well as the institution of art itself, the piece becomes an absurdist paean to materials themselves, as well as a nod to the polemics of simplicity. The deceptively simple “Ladder” treads similar ground - a standard industrial ladder from which all the rungs except the top and bottom have been removed. Turning a functional object into minimalist sculpture is standard practice, but the sly aesthetic reflection on the powers of “high and low” in a social art context bespeak a certain subversion of the understood.

Ceal Floyer was born in 1968. She graduated from Goldsmiths College in 1994 and has exhibited widely throughout the world. Her work has been seen in solo exhibitions at Palais de Tokyo, Paris, MADRE, Naples, KW Institute for Contemporary Arts, Berlin, MoCA Miami and CCA Tel Aviv, Isreal. In 2007 she was awarded the Nationalgalerie Prize for Young Art. Her work is in major museum collections including Tate Modern, London, MoMA, New York and Koc Family Foundation, Istanbul. Ceal Floyer lives and works in Berlin. 

547 West 21st Street, New York, NY 10011

September 12, 2011

Body and Soul - Art works from Hara Museum Collection, Japan

Body and Soul - Selections from the Hara Museum Collection
Hara Museum ARC, Gunma-ken, Japan
September 17, 2011 - January 4, 2012 

The expression “body and soul” has had a long tradition of use in America, among other countries, appearing in countless titles of songs and movies. In Japan the expression has also become a common one that is mainly encountered in music. On display in the contemporary art galleries are works selected from the Hara Museum Collection with “body and soul” as the keyword. The body has been compared to many things; for example, a container for the soul or a shell for the spirit. Some view the body and soul as being one and the same thing, or the body as a medium through which the self interacts with others and the surrounding world. 

Mickalene Thomas, Mama Bush : One of a Kind Two, 2009 
Photo courtesy of the Hara Museum ARC, Gunma-ken

We in this media age experience the body with its expanded capabilities made possible by various tools and technologies. In some of some of the paintings, photographs, sculptures and other works on display, the body is clearly the subject; in others it is not. Nonetheless, it is hoped that their myriad expressions will inspire viewers to consider anew the connection between the body and the spirit and what the body means to them. 

Izumi Kato, Untitled, 2006 
Photo courtesy of the Hara Museum ARC, Gunma-ken

Featured artists: Izumi Kato (photo), Yayoi Kusama, Ushio Shinohara, Tabaimo, Miwa Yanagi, Tomoko Yoneda, William Kentridge, Laurie Simmons, Mickalene Thomas (photo) and others

Hara Museum ARC, Gunma-ken, Japan 
Galleries A, B and C
Web site:

September 11, 2011

Toulouse-Lautrec: The Human Comedy, SMK - National Gallery of Denmark

Toulouse-Lautrec: The Human Comedy 
SMK - National Gallery of Denmark, Copenhague 
17 Septembre 2011 - 19 February 2012

A cripple descended from aristocratic stock who became the controversial chronicler of modern-day Paris. The story of Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec can very easily simply become the oft-told tale of this quirky artist who, for better or worse, became as one with his own art and circle of motifs. A major exhibition at the Royal Collection of Graphic Art at the National Gallery of Denmark (SMK) moves out of the shadow of the mythology surrounding the artist. Featuring more than 130 works, the exhibition presents a sharply focused image of an artist whose depictions of the Parisian entertainment scene dissected and commented on modern existence by means of striking and groundbreaking effects. 

Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (1864-1901) 
Toulouse-Lautrec as Pierrot, Photograph, 1894
Musée Toulouse-Lautrec, Albi, France

Toulouse-Lautrec: The Urban Scene - Paris
More than any other artist Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (1864-1901) stands as the enfant terrible of French late 19th century art. Over a brief but intense period of slightly more than 15 years the artist infiltrated the city’s entertainment scenes, interpreting virtue and vice across boundaries of class and social distinction without compromise. The city, which was described in Lautrec’s own day as a stage, became the starting point of his art. And the entertainment industry was the microcosm he used to record how the players on the urban scene staged themselves and their desires, regardless of gender and class.

Toulouse-Lautrec’s circle of motifs focuses on theatres, circuses, brothels, cafés, and dance halls, particularly in Montmartre. Here he created a repertoire of figures that comprised dancers, singers, actors, prostitutes, and their audiences and clients. Exercising his keen eye for tragic comedy this gallery of characters became an obvious source of subject matter in his work on decoding urban existence. The exhibition offers a veritable parade of such portrayals, demonstrating how Lautrec used caricature as a way of making shrewd observations of the social games being played; games which were set against the backdrop of a growing consumer culture and often centred on sexuality and desires. 

Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (1864-1901)
La Clownesse, seated, Mademoiselle Cha-U-Kao (From the album Elles)
Lithograph, 525 x 403 mm
Image courtesy of the SMK

Toulouse-Lautrec: A pioneer
Toulouse-Lautrec’s artistic identity and anti-bourgeois attitude prompted him to transgress the boundaries between popular and highbrow culture, prefiguring aspects of 20th century avant-garde art. Parallel to his purely artistic work he also created illustrations and advertisements marketing a range of products and experiences. 

Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (1864-1901)  
La Chaîne Simpson - The Simpson Chain / Advertisement 
Designmuseum Danmark, The Prints and Drawings Collection 
Photo: Pernille Klemp 
Poster, lithograph, 876 x 1247 mm

The exhibition focuses attention on Lautrec’s graphic works and on selected drawings. It shows how he, with his keenly honed sense for the commercial market and mass communication, found his own radical and innovative idiom, particularly within the graphic medium – which includes his groundbreaking posters. In his graphic experiments he employed simplification, stylisation, and exaggeration to achieve a hitherto unseen form and effect that had a strong impact on the public conscience – an idiom which means that his artistic takes on the human condition remain as fresh and mischievous today as when they were created.

Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (1864 - 1901)
Cover for the album Yvette Guilbert
Lithograph, 407 x 388 mm
Image courtesy of the SMK

At the exhibition: Themes, guide, app and film Toulouse-Lautrec and Montmartre
The exhibition differs from conventional retrospectives by opting out of the typical mode of chronological presentation. Rather, the many works are arranged by themes, focusing on the various scenes and players featured in Lautrec’s universe. The exhibition is accompanied by an informative guide, and visitors can also – before, during, and after their visit – access other materials such as apps for their smartphones and iPods. The latter can be borrowed from the ticket desk. Also, the film Toulouse-Lautrec and Montmartre is shown every day in the exhibition and in the Gallery’s cinema. 

Toulouse-Lautrec. The Human Comedy: Exhibition Catalogue 
On the occasion of this exhibition The National Gallery of Denmark also publishes with Prestel the catalogue Toulouse-Lautrec. The Human Comedy. Main article by Birgitte Anderberg and Vibeke Vibolt Knudsen, preface by Karsten Ohrt. 176 p, 24x30, richly illustrated. Available in Danish, and German.

Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec 
Die menschliche Komödie 
Prestel, 2011 

SMK - Statens Museum for Kunst 
Solvgade 48-50
DK-1307 Kopenhagen


The exhibitions at the Royal Collection of Graphic Art are sponsored by Oak Foundation Denmark