Category Archives: Art

From Aliens to Minimalists

On our way to Big Bend National Park we stopped in Roswell, New Mexico to see the aliens. We continued on to the very small town of Marathon, Texas and stayed in the famous historic Gage Hotel. We then went on to Marfa, Texas where the minimalist artist Donald Judd moved in 1971 from New York City. By the late 1970’s Judd had acquired (with the help of the Dia Foundation) an old army fort which he envisioned to be a place where artists could display their work as it was intended to be seen. He invited friends such as Dan Flavin and John Chamberlain. The last few days have been beautiful so here are a few pictures!

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Paris Photo

There were some really great works at Paris Photo, but Santeri Tuori, a Finnish artist born in 1970, really caught my eye. These beautiful sky photographs are 150 x 187 cm and look very painterly.

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And a number of galleries showed Scott Peterman photographs, which I always love. Here is a beautiful cityscape of New York.

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I also discovered a young Lithuanian photographer, Indre Serpytyte, whose work explores history, memory and loss. This series invokes the memory of former houses of NKVD-NKGB-MVD-MGB Soviet forces in her native country, immediately prior to its independence from Soviet occupation.

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Venice Part 2: Art

There were some really interesting pieces at the Venice Biennale. The Russian Pavilion featured an artist named Vadim Zakharov, and the installation is centered on custom-made gold coins falling from the sky, in a room where only women are allowed (and protected by umbrellas). Drawing from the perpetually revisited myth of Zeus and Danae, the installation uses consumable objects and the sequence of architectural spaces to make manifest underlying ideas about ‘rudeness, lust, narcissism, demagoguery, falsehood, banality, and greed, cynicism, robbery, speculation, wastefulness, gluttony, seduction, envy, and stupidity.’ The impregation of Danae occurs when Zeus appears to her in the form of golden rain after she is locked in a tower to prevent the professed death of her father. The performance works on various levels — cultural, philosophical, sexual and psychological — engaging visitors in the presentation of a myth and its values.

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There were also a few Marc Quinn sculptures on the island of San Giorgio Maggiore.

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And a beautiful installation by Walter de Maria.

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Palazzo Grassi (now owned by the French entrepreneur and art collector Francois Pinault) has devoted the entirety of it’s space to the Italian born artist, Rudolf Stingel. The exhibition is centered on the relationship between abstraction and figuration, where a carpet with oriental pattern covers the entire surface of the walls and floors. 

“The wall-to-wall carpet, which Stingel has used since the early nineties as an autonomous pictorial element, enters again the rooms of the Venetian house. This time, the Oriental pattern of the carpet not only invades the floors but the walls as well in a continuity that overthrows the ordinary spatial relationships between the spectator and the painting. ”
Elena Geuna, independent curator and contemporary art advisor.

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Stockholm

I’ve just spent a few days in Stockholm, visiting bookshops and museums. My favorite place was Fotografiska, the centre for contemporary photography, housed in a former industrial building from 1906. It’s such a beautiful city, and here are a few photos!

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Light Show

I’ve recently seen the Light Show at the Hayward Gallery in London which was great. Here are just a few images from works by Carlos Cruz-Diez and Olafur Eliasson.

“Light has the power to affect our state of mind as well as alter how we perceive the world around us, and Light Show includes some of the most visually stimulating artworks created in recent years.”

 

 

 

 

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Tim Walker

I recently went to the Tim Walker exhibition at Somerset House, which was great. The British born fashion photographer uses extravagant staging and creative motifs to create eye-catching images. His work is unmistakably contemporary but there is a sense of nostalgia in his strange world. The exhibition is fun, flamboyant and beautiful! And, Thames & Hudson have published a fantastic book to accompany the exhibition.

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Pitt Rivers Museum

My sister and her fiancé are in London visiting, and we took a day trip to Oxford. We had a wonderful time at the Pitt Rivers Museum, a museum displaying the archaeological and anthropological collection of General Pitt Rivers, who donated his collection to the University of Oxford in 1884. The collection is arranged thematically according to how the objects were used, not their origin or age. General Pitt Rivers intended for his collection to show progression in design and human culture, which creates outstanding displays. There were cases with many types of horns, games, keys, swords, snowshoes, jewelry, medical instruments and more. The list goes on. It’s definitely a place to visit!

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The Photographers’ Gallery

I went to the re-opening of The Photographers’ Gallery last night which was great. The building looks amazing and the Edward Burtynsky exhibition is really good. Definitely worth going to check out the new space!

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British Design

I saw the new exhibition at the V&A, British Design 1948-2012: Innovation in the Modern Age, which was great. The show celebrates the best of British post-war art and design from the 1948 “Austerity Games” to the summer of 2012. Here are a few of my favourite pieces.

Jaguar E-Type Series 1 by Malcom Sayer, 1961

Alexander McQueen, 2009

A scale model of the London Routemaster bus, first seen in 1954

Go To Work on an Egg, Mather & Crowther, 1964

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Long Weekend

I have had a wonderful long weekend in London! I started off by seeing Titanic in IMAX and 3D which was amazing! Then I saw the Yayoi Kusama and Damien Hirst shows at Tate Modern, followed by a great dinner at my favourite Soho restaurant, Polpo. I then went out into the countryside with some friends for a delicious pub lunch at The Royal Oak and a walk at Cliveden House in Berkshire. A great way to spend the Easter/Passover weekend.

 

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