Archive for the ‘Travel’ Category

Photography | Le Tour by Sebastião Salgado

Friday, July 1st, 2016




France


Sebastião Salgado
Le Tour de France
Polka Galerie
Paris | France
2 > 30 July 2016



France

The Blog team is away, alas not in France, where the 103rd Tour de France begins this Saturday 2 July. Finishing on Sunday 24 July, this year’s cycling race will be made up of 21 stages and covers a total distance of 3,519 kilometres. In 1986, Brazilian documentary photographer and photojournalist, Sebastião Salgado, now 72 year old and famous the world over for his intensely moving images of human suffering and environmental concern, created a surprisingly sedate and unique set of portraits for the French newspaper Liberation, of those patiently waiting for the cyclists to arrive at their towns along the entire Tour route.France

France

France

Sebastião Salgado: Le Tour de France, including a selection of 18 images is on show at Paris’s Polka Galerie throughout July.

All images: Tour de France, 1986 © Sebastião Salgado / Amazonas Images, Courtesy Polka Galerie


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Photography | J.H. Lartigue / On Holiday

Friday, June 10th, 2016

‘Renée Biarritz, August 1930′



J.H.Lartigue ‘The Blink of an Eye’
Michael Hoppen Gallery
London | UK
8 June > 9 August 2016



‘Véra et Arlette, Cannes, Mai, 1927’



‘Florette, Monte Carlo beach, août 1953′



‘Bibi, Arlette and Irène. Cannes, 1929′



‘Coco on the terrace, Neuilly, June 1938’



The Blog team is on holiday.

If you’re in London, we recommend you try to see J.H.Lartigue ‘The Blink of an Eye’ at the Michael Hoppen Gallery. The exhibition is curated by Hoppen himself, together with author and Lartigue enthusiast William Boyd, who recently wrote an excellent piece – that we also recommend you read – about the great master of the snapshot, on The Guardian’s website

All photographs by JH Lartigue © Ministère de la Culture, France / AAJHL
All images courtesy Michael Hoppen Gallery


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Photography | Brasilia, Utopia, and Inertia

Friday, April 15th, 2016

Chamber of Deputies (Annex IX) #2, 2012



Vincent Fournier
‘Brasilia’
The Ravestijn Gallery
Amsterdam | The Netherlands
16 April > 28 May 2016



Brasilia, the purpose-built federal capital of Brazil, constructed from scratch in the middle of the 1950s by urban planner Lucío Costa with landscape designer Roberto Burle Marx and architect Oscar Niemeyer, is grappling with a dilemma. Planned for around 500,000 inhabitants, in 1960 – the year of its inauguration – there were already almost 140,000 people resident in the city. By 1970 the figure had grown to 537,000. It has now reached 2.5m and is growing at a phenomenal rate of almost 3% per year. The question is how to reconcile the pressing needs of the increasing population with the utopian dream on which the city was founded.

The Claudio Santoro - National Theatre,
ceramic tile panel
by Athos Bulcão, 2012



The torpid atmosphere pervading the narrative in Vincent Fournier’s ‘Brasilia’ series seems to imply that a solution, which deals effectively with the situation, if indeed one does emerge, might be a long time in coming. The anonymous single figure in his Chamber of Deputies (Annex IX) #2, 2012, could be looking for an inspired idea in the landscape beyond his circular window. The image conveys no sense of anticipation, but the bored children photographed at The Claudio Santoro National Theatre appear to have been waiting for some time – the security man, a permanent fixture, is rooted to his position.

The Itamaraty Palace - Foreign Relations Ministry,
spiral stairs, 2012



Having been declared a Unesco World Heritage Site in 1987, Brasilia’s extremely strict planning controls ensure that, unlike it’s close contemporary, Le Corbusier’s Chandigarh (still only tentatively listed for UWHS status), which is gradually being eroded and is at risk from the ad hoc mixed development that scars most other Indian cities, and where slum areas have already been established, the pristine Brazilian city’s limits are still easily distinguishable from the expanse of virgin landscape into which it was introduced.

The Itamaraty Palace - Foreign Relations Ministry,
wood and steel panel
by Athos Bulcão, 2012



Inertia stops the energetically curving spiral staircase in Fournier’s photograph of the Foreign Relations Ministry, at The Itamaraty Palace, dead in its tracks, while a busy wood and steel decorative panel at the same location masks a hive of inactivity.

Unesco go so far as to admit that Brasilia is vulnerable to urban development pressure including increased traffic and public transport requirements, but insist that the singular and outstanding value of Lucio Costa’s scheme, ‘which remains wholly preserved, both physically and symbolically’, is not in jeopardy.

The Ravestijn Gallery is showing a selection of 36 photographs from Vincent Fournier’s ‘Brasilia’ series, prints from which form part of the permanent collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and the LVMH Contemporary Art Foundation in Paris.

All photographs are C-prints on Ilford Fine Art Baryta with white border
All images courtesy The Ravestijn Gallery


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Photography | Man v Nature: An Interface Acted Out

Friday, January 15th, 2016

Joshua Tree (CA), 2002

Taft (CA), 2008

Joshua Tree (CA), 2007

Joshua Tree (CA), 2002

Claremont (CA), 2004

Twentynine Palms (CA), 2002

Sierra Nevada (CA), 2007



Marie-José Jongerius
‘The Magic Tree’
The Ravestijn Gallery
Amsterdam  | Netherlands
16 January > 27 February 2016



Distant, challenging, imbued with obscure meaning: if the British performance artist, model, and fashion icon Tilda Swinton was a landscape, she might resemble the photographs in this exhibition. There’s no denying that Swinton has an enigmatic stage presence that is impossible to ignore, on which her success is based, and these images demand attention for the same reasons. Produced in the hot, dry landscapes spanning the south-western United States, from the Pacific Ocean to the mountaintops of Sierra Nevada and down to the Mojave Desert, despite the golden light – like Swinton’s various personae – each studiously muted  image, resonates with coldness rather than warmth.

Marie-José Jongerius at work



At first sight, the seemingly empty, innocuous snatches of landscape might be an amateur’s snapshots from a road-trip to nowhere, but seasoned Dutch photographer Marie-José Jongerius’s photographs are carefully choreographed scenes in which she employs trees to act out the uneasy relationship between man and nature in this arid region, where the artificial interfaces awkwardly with the organic world.

While Marie-José Jongerius ‘The Magic Tree’ at The Ravestijn Gallery is restricted to only the seven large format images shown here, sixty of her landscape works can be found in the two volume book set Edges of the Experiment – The Making of the American Landscape (2015), which we blogged about in April 2015.

Main images courtesy The Ravestijn Gallery, © Marie-José Jongerius.
Portrait by Marcello Scopelliti


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Photography | Christmas Trees

Friday, December 4th, 2015

Monkey puzzle /
Araucaria araucana



Christmas Trees
Carlisle Park | Morpeth | Northumberland | UK
Photographed by Pedro Silmon



European beech /
Fagus sylvatica
Common lime /
Tilia x europaea



Sycamore /
Acer pseudoplatanus



European larch /
Larix decidua



European beech /
Fagus sylvatica



Horse chestnut /
Aesculus hippocastanum



All photographs © Pedro Silmon


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Art | Back to Front

Friday, November 27th, 2015

Giulio Paolini
Senza titolo, 1964
Paper, masonite board
Photo Giuseppe Schiavinotto.
Archivio Luciano Pistoi



Recto Verso
Fondazione Prada
Milan | Italy
3 December 2015 > 7 February 2016



Daniel Dezeuze
Chassis avec feuille de plastique tendue, 1967
Wood, plastic
Courtesy Galerie Bernard Ceysson



Question. Take nothing at face value. Nothing is ever quite what it seems, especially in terms of art. Even Kazimir Malevich’s groundbreaking and uncompromising Black Square, 1915 – the first non-objective or abstract painting – was this year, when Moscow’s Tretyakov Gallery examined it for the first time with x-rays, discovered to have two earlier paintings hidden beneath it’s surface.

While historical precedents occur in Byzantine art – two-sided icons bearing representations of the virgin and child on one side and the crucifixion on the other – and elsewhere, perhaps the multi-facetted Marcel Duchamp (1887 > 1968) was one of the earliest modern artists to play with the concept of recto/verso, in which the flip-side of a piece of art is given equal and serious consideration, along with the front. By 1915, he had already conceived of and started working on his complex, monumental work, The Bride Stripped Bare by her Bachelors, Even / The Large Glass, (1915 > 23), a free-standing glass construction, almost three metres tall by two wide, which was specifically intended to be viewed from both sides.

Malevich (1879 > 1935) had said, ‘It is from zero, in zero, that the true movement of being begins,’ and it was the Zero group of post-World War II, originally European, artists, who would seek to annihilate all forms of representation within art. To celebrate the possibilities inherent in ‘nothingness’, and attempting to penetrate the mysterious concept of the fourth dimension, they began examining the canvas itself and the frame around which it was stretched, with a view toward breaking through its confines. Lucio Fontana would famously slash his canvases, while other Zero artists would turn them to face the wall so as to better appreciate their construction, and to suggest that what happens on the hidden, or reverse side of a work of art is just as worthy of consideration as what happens on the more normally exposed ‘front’.

Thomas Demand
Lightbox, 2004
C-Print / Diasec
© Thomas Demand, VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn / SIAE, Rome.
Courtesy Sprüth Magers



Giulio Paolini
Decima Musa, 1966
Three triangular canvases.
© Giulio Paolini
Photo Attilio Maranzano.
Private Collection, Bari



Roy Lichtenstein
Stretcher Frame with Vertical Bar, 1968
Oil and magna on canvas
© Estate of Roy Lichtenstein / SIAE 2015



Leading exponent of arte povera in the late 1960s, Italian painter and sculptor, Giulio Paolini (b 1940), who trained as a graphic designer and countered what he considered to be the ‘picturesqueness’ of France’s art informel, abstract art movement of the 1940s and 50s, by concentrating on the basic components of painting – canvas, frame, paint of a single colour – or even the abolition of paint in favour of a completely bare surface. And, in the year that pop artist Roy Lichtenstein produced his own stripped-down recto / verso paintings, the cataclysmic events of May 1968 in Paris implanted the idea in a generation of French youth that it was their task to dismantle every form of received structure, including those in contemporary art. They were to embark on a radical deconstruction of accepted mediums. The support/surfaces group of artists, that emerged in France, that included, among others, founder member Daniel Dezeuze (b 1942), rejecting the often unwieldy, modular constructions of American minimalism – the established avant garde art of the period – sought lightness and physical freedom. They considered the portability of art and the use of basic and cheap materials, such as strips of newspaper, bed-sheets, dish-cloths and scraps of canvas they used to make it, as important, which led some to re-assess the simplicity of the canvas-based painting. However, by 1970, they were insisting that painting could ‘exist only through the systematic elimination of all subjective practice,’ via the rejection of the brush, but, interestingly, not the painting. In some of the resulting works, the picture plane vanished completely, and all that remained was the support material.

Recto Verso, at Fondazione Prada presents artworks by artists from different generations and across a range of genres, all of which consciously push the hidden concealed or forgotten phenomenon of ‘the back’ firmly into the foreground.

All images courtesy Fondazione Prada


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Design | Punchy Image / Sensitive Touch

Friday, November 13th, 2015

Karl Gerstner, Auch Du bist liberal /
You’re liberal too
, 1956.
Political poster
© Karl Gerstner / Muriel Gerstner
(represented by Maria Jurkovic)



Handzeichen / Hand Signs
Museum für Gestaltung – Schaudepot
Zürich | Switzerland
27 November 2015 > 28 February 2016

+

Bitte berühren! / Please touch!
Museum für Gestaltung – Schaudepot
Zürich | Switzerland
27 November 2015 > 20 March 2016

+

Poster Collection 27:
Die Hand / The Hand
Edited by the Museum für Gestaltung Zürich
Lars Müller Publishers, (2015)
98 pp, 120 illustrations,
paperback



Armin Hofmann,
Stadttheater Basel 63/64, 1963.
Concert poster
Photo Max Mathys
© Armin Hofmann



Kōichi Saitō
Ongakuza / Soap Bubbles Floated,
They Floated into Outer Space, 1989.
Film poster



As powerful, expressive, beautiful, and versatile as they have the potential to be, left to their own devices hands can get a bit restless, drift around, feel a little lost. But give them a purpose – gripping, punching, pointing, caressing, adding weight to an argument – and they instantly come into their own. Three, more or less, simultaneous design events – two exhibitions, the publication of a new book – all related – invite us to take a closer look at hands.

In Michaelangelo’s ubiquitous painting The Creation of Adam (c 1512), God thrusts out his hand, boldly pushing forward a single finger to touch lonely and anxious-looking Adam’s rather limp one. The entire message behind the picture is in the interplay of those two hands – something any good poster designer instinctively understands. Even these Michaelangelo hands, however, would remain impotent as a poster image until set to work with type, plus perhaps a few additional visual props, to communicate whatever the commission demands. Handzeichen / Hand Signs, the Museum für Gestaltung Zürich’s forthcoming exhibition brings together both diverse and similar examples – political, commercial, arts-related, and social – of international poster design, all incorporating the hand, each utilising the hand’s symbolic strength for maximum impact, to present a brief cultural history of how it has been used as a design element to express a wide variety of meaningful messages. Lars Müller PublishersPoster Collection 27: Die Hand /The Hand, the latest in this well-designed, high quality and apparently limitless series, is published to coincide with this exhibition and features examples from the Museum’s vast archive.

Climbing grips
Photo F X Jaggy + U Romito



Konstantin Datz, Braille Cube,
Rubik’s Cube for the Blind, 2010
© Konstantin Datz



Watchmaker’s tools, 1990s
Photo F X Jaggy + U Romito



Designed by nature to assist early man in building a life for himself, used to scrape, smash, gather and kill, sometimes to draw and paint and carve, over a relatively long period human hands became adept at making tools to work with, at building and farming, and later skilled in the art of writing. Up until quite recently, it must be said, in the developed world, hands led an interesting sort of existence. But then along came 21st century technology…

Albeit playing the role of the hand tool that thousands of man-made objects throughout history have before it, the new Apple wireless keyboard – now reduced to about about two-thirds of the length of the older versions – still has actual keys that you can push down to type letters that instantly appear in your on-screen electronic document, but only very a light touch is required from the user. The myriad of touch-screen devices, including smartphones, hole-in-the-wall cash machines, interactive maps, gallery guides that have become an integral part of our daily lives exemplify same reductive story. Here, the ‘key’ your finger reaches for may resemble the 3D analogue version you’re familiar with, but it’s completely flat, devoid of form and texture, reduced to an electronically-generated image behind a shiny glass screen. The featherlight touch of a fingertip tapped gently upon it is enough to transport you anywhere you want to go on your digital journey. And, afterwards, if your phone isn’t already taking up all the space, you can slip your redundant hands back into your pockets. With a variety of real objects from the area of contemporary product design, to really touch, really feel, and to really do things with, Museum für Gestaltung’s Bitte berühren! / Please touch! exhibition, offers a helping hand to hands that are suffering from their ever-diminishing role in our rapidly-changing, technology-dominated society.

All images courtesy Museum für Gestaltung Zürich and Lars Müller Publishers.
All image content from the Museum für Gestaltung Zürich collections


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The Blog’s publishers insist that all images supplied for publication in our posts are cleared for that use before being sent to us. Whether pictures are sent to us as email attachments or made available as downloadable files, any responsibility for fees that may, under any circumstances whatsoever, fall due, must be borne by the source supplier



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Art | Women Artists Kick up a Storm in Frankfurt

Friday, October 30th, 2015

Maria Uhden, Four Nudes,
Woodcut, reproduced in Der Sturm, 1915

Universitätsbibliothek Johann Christian Senckenberg,
Frankfurt am Main



Storm Women
Women Artists of the Avant-Garde in Berlin 1910 > 1932
Schirn Kunsthalle Frankfurt
Frankfurt | Germany
30 October 2015 > 7 February 2016



Lavinia Schulz
Toboggan Woman, original, c 1924
Linen, papier mâché, wire, leather
© Photo Museum für Kunst
und Gewerbe Hamburg



One man, Herwarth Walden, made certain that women’s early 20th century avant-garde art got the exposure it deserved. Despite his efforts, however, many of them and much of their work vanished into obscurity. Most of us are familiar with their work or have at least heard of Sonia Delaunay, Natalja Goncharova and Gabriele Münter, but such names as Alexandra Exter, Else Lasker-Schüler, Marianne von Werefkin, Marthe Donas, Jacoba van Heemskerck, Hilla von Rebay, Lavinia Schulz, and Maria Uhden probably ring few bells. A new exhibition in Frankfurt, for the first time ever, brings together work by 18 of the 30 female artists, representing expressionism, cubism, futurism, constructivism and the new objectivity, which Walden promoted, and aims to set the record straight.

Walden wasn’t exclusively concerned with female artists, indeed he began by publishing woodcuts by, mostly by male, expressionist, Die Brucke (The Bridge) and Der Blaue Reiter (The Blue Rider) artists, Oskar Kokoschka, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Emil Nolde, and Max Pechstein amongst them, via the mass-produced and inexpensive Der Sturm / The Storm periodical, which he established in Berlin in 1910. It ran as a weekly up until in 1914 then changed to monthly publication, becoming a quarterly in 1924, before ceasing publication in 1932, when Walden, fleeing the Nazis emigrated to the USSR.

Composed of friends with similar interests, the international network Walden was eventually to develop served as a forum for intense discussion on the buzzing ideas, theories, and concepts of the avant-garde. In Berlin, the Sturm evening events, the Sturm academy he founded, the Sturm theatre and bookshop, as well as the occasional balls and a cabaret, offered those who were interested a broad variety of opportunities to gain access to the diverse artistic currents and trends from 1910 to until the early thirties.

To celebrate Der Sturm’s 100th issue in 1912, Walden opened Galerie der Sturm, with an exhibition of fauvist and Der Blaue Reiter work, soon followed by the Italian futurists. Particularly during in the years preceding the outbreak of World War I, Sturm played a crucial role in the development of a special relationship between Berlin and Paris, exhibiting work by Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque, as well as the Franco-German artist, Jean (aka Hans) Arp and Robert Delaunay. Walden showed Edvard Munch, Paul Klee and Wassily Kandinsky and Marc Chagall: Kurt Schwitters’ would have his first one-man exhibition at the Galerie Der Sturm, in 1920.

Gabriele Münter
Apples on Blue, 1908
Oil on cardboard
Kunstsammlungen Chemnitz
- Museum Gunzenhauser
Property of Stiftung Gunzenhauser,
Chemnitz VG Bild-Kunst,
Bonn 2015



Jacoba van Heemskerck
Houses in Suiderland, Drawing No 13, 1914
Ink on paper
Kunstmuseum Bern, Donation Nell Walden



Sigrid Hjertén
Woman with Fur and Red Hat, 1915
Oil on canvas
Private collection
Photo © per@myrehed.com



In the early decades of the 20th century, women artists were barely recognised by society and had no access to the academic training their male colleagues enjoyed. The subject of women in visual art was openly discussed in many publications during those years, but their claims to originality and creativity were generally brushed aside. The more broad-minded Herwarth Walden, however, claimed it was the individual work of art that was most important to him, regardless of whether the maker was a man or a woman. Sharp and always on the lookout for the new and the cutting edge, he disregarded the typical prejudices of the time and gave women artists their first big chance. Roughly one fifth of the Sturm gallery artists were female. A disparate group, their life stories, personal circumstances, and critical reception varied enormously, as did their styles and approach to creating art.

The expressionist painter Gabrielle Münter (1877 > 1962), who would gain only moderate success throughout her life, was honoured with a posthumous major retrospective exhibition, celebrating the artistic achievements of her early career, at London’s prestigious Courtauld Gallery in 2005, and has since become more widely appreciated. During the pre-World War I years, she lived with Wassily Kandinsky in Mürnau (Bavaria), where their home became an important meeting place for the highly-influential Der Blaue Reiter group. In 1913, Münther had an exhibition of eighty-four paintings at the Sturm, Walden arranging for some of the work to be shown later at galleries in Munich, Copenhagen, Dresden, and Stuttgart.

Along with Münther, Maria Uhden and Nell Walden (Herwarth’s second wife, her predecessor, Else Lasker-Schüler was an artist and poet), Marianne von Werefkin (1860−1938) was one of the most frequently exhibited female artists at the Sturm. Walden, who was impressed by her passion for the concepts and forms of expression in modern art, shared many of her views and was responsible for introducing her work to a broader public throughout Germany and Europe. Dutch artist Jacoba van Heemskerck (1876−1923) was featured in ten solo shows at the gallery, and, with a total of twenty woodcuts, was represented more often than any other artist on the cover of Der Sturm.

Sonia Delaunay, Design B53, 1924
Gouache and pencil on paper
Private collection
Foto © Privatarchiv



Maria Uhden (1892−1918), some of whose woodcuts anticipate the 1980s work of the American graffiti artist Keith Haring, drew inspiration from historical prints and book illustrations that had been revived in the Almanach Der Blaue Reiter. Walden continued to show her works at his gallery and in touring exhibitions well after her premature death.

‘Sonia Delaunay is now rightly seen as a stronger and more complex artist than her husband, who died in 1941,’ wrote The Guardian in April this year, in a review of The EY Exhibition: Sonia Delaunay, her retrospective at Tate Modern, that had started life in 2014 at Paris’s Musée d’Art Moderne, for which over 400 works: paintings, wall decorations, gouaches, prints, fashion items and textiles, tracing her career from the early 20th century to the 1970s were assembled. Born Sonia Terk (1885 > 1979) into a well-to-do family in the Ukraine, she studied painting in Germany but travelled to Paris before settling there in 1905. Already under the influence of Gaugin and German expressionism, she encountered Picasso and by 1908 was exhibiting alongside him, Braque, Derain, and Dufy. By about 1912, in conjunction with her second husband, Robert, she was producing pioneering abstract work in a style that the French poet Guillaume Apollinaire was to christen Orphism. Coming to Paris in search of new work Herwarth Walden and Nell stayed with the Delaunays, returning to Berlin with many of their pieces of which twenty-one of Robert’s and twenty-five of Sonia’s were included in the Erster Deutscher Herbst Salon / First German Autumn Salon exhibition at the Sturm Gallery in 1913. In 1920, Walden presented a selection of Sonia’s works in a solo exhibition.

A friend of the Delaunays and also from the Ukraine, Alexandra Exter (1882−1949) served as a mediator between the East European and Western avant-garde circles in Paris, producing her own cubo-futurist style work in several different media. The Schirn is presenting her Female costume design for Aelita (a silent film that premiered in Berlin in 1924). In 1927, her unique cubist and constructivist marionettes, were given a solo show at the Sturm.

Storm Women: Women Artists of the Avant-Garde in Berlin 1910 > 1932, at the Schirn Kunsthalle Frankfurt honours each of the artists included with a separate room and features some 250 works.

All images courtesy Schirn Kunsthalle Frankfurt


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The Blog is about art, architecture, books, design and gardens, and anything else that currently interests us that we think might interest you.

The Blog’s publishers insist that all images supplied for publication in our posts are cleared for that use before being sent to us. Whether pictures are sent to us as email attachments or made available as downloadable files, any responsibility for fees that may, under any circumstances whatsoever, fall due, must be borne by the source supplier



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Art | Paris Goes Out of This World

Friday, September 25th, 2015

Robert Longo
Untitled (Astronaut Tereshkova,
First Woman in Space), 2015

Charcoal on mounted paper.
2 panels, each 238.8 x 121.9 cm




Space Age
Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac
Paris Pantin
Paris | France
27 September > 23 December 2015



Stephan Balkenhol
Mann auf Rakete /
Man on a Rocket
, 2015

Wawa wood.
Photo Philippe Servent



It looked slick, cool and clever. Everyone was very excited when Apollo 11 commander Neil Armstrong stepped off the Lunar Module’s ladder and onto the Moon’s surface, on July 20, 1969. What had hitherto been the stuff of dreams, comic books, science fiction novels and film, was suddenly happening for the first time, live on our TV screens. Armstrong’s iconic ‘…one small step for man and one giant leap for mankind,’ footprint image made a deep impression on the art world. The years of preparation had already had a huge influence on artists such as Korean-American Nam Juin Pak (1932 > 2006), and the moon landing itself, lent credence to influential Argentine-Italian artist Lucio Fontana’s 1949 claim, ‘I assure you that on the moon no-one will make paintings, but they will make spatial art.’ He would go on to prophesy, ominously ‘… Art, as it is thought of today, will end.’ Sadly, Fontana, who died in 1968, just missed the big show.

Lee Bul
Aubade IV, 2015
Stainless-steel structure,
acrylic, polycarbonate sheet,
glass paint, LED lights,
electrical wiring, fog machine



Cory Arcangel
MIG 29 Soviet Fighter Plane

and Clouds, 2005
2 handmade hacked Nintendo
cartridges & games systems
multi-channel projections



Anselm Kiefer
Das Grab in den Lüften /
The Grave in the Air,
1991

Mixed media installation
comprised of glass, stone,
earth, lead, wood and iron.
Photo Philippe Servent



What might Fontana have made of this new show in the four vast halls of Paris Pantin for which 20 artists of different generations contribute works, in a variety of media, inspired by the notion of outer space – its diverse connotations, from science to utopia? In an era where news of space flights and happenings on space stations is so commonplace that they barely rate a like, never mind a retweet, have conventional art works become redundant?

Robert Rauschenberg (1925 > 2008) is represented by a large dynamic wall sculpture, constructed from, among other elements, an aeroplane part and a bicycle frame, the whole redolent of undefined wreckage, but clearly referencing early attempts at manned flight. There’s also a layered acrylic print on a sheet of mirrored aluminium by Rauschenberg that plays with the notion of surface, depth and even volume – Fontana experimented in similar areas – but is in a disarming and fairly conventional, framed format.

Robert Rauschenberg
Roads (Shiner), 1992
Acrylic on mirrored aluminium.
© Robert Rauschenberg
Foundation / VAGA,
New York / ADAGP, Paris.
Photo John Berens



Harun Farocki
Eye / Machine I > III, 2001 > 2003

Double-channel installation,
sound, colour, 25 / 17 /15 minutes.
Courtesy Estate Harun Farocki



Never predictable, ever ambiguous, the new piece, Aubade IV (2015), included from Korean artist Lee Bul (1964 >), made up of four elements, might represent a battle in space. It incorporates LED lights and a fog machine, and is elusively yet aptly described as ‘of variable dimensions’, which has become common practice for installation work, but is particularly appropriate in this instance, because there’s a sense that the viewer is looking at a snatch from a scene that might shift and change at any moment .

Untitled (Astronaut Tereshkova, First Woman in Space), 2015, from American painter/sculptor Robert Longo, aged 52, who first came to the fore in the 1980s with a series depicting sharply-dressed men and women writhing in contorted emotion, has contributed a piece made up of two huge monochrome panels (each 238.8 x 121.9 cm), executed in the age-old medium of charcoal. Set at right angles to one another, each picks up a reflection of the other, imbuing it with an immersive, weightless quality.

What might have shocked Fontana is that, in amongst the aeroplane parts and the double-channel video installations, Space Age at Galerie Thaddeus Ropac, includes a few oil paintings and even some figurative sculpture.

All items and images courtesy Galerie Thaddeus Ropac, Paris / Salzburg


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All Categories | Here, There + Everywhere

Wednesday, September 9th, 2015

Piet Mondrian (1872 – 1944),
Komposition in Oval mit Farbflächen 2, 1914

© Gemeentemuseum Den Haag, The Netherlands.
On show at Martin-Gropius-Bau in Berlin, see below



The Blog’s regular posts won’t appear on
Friday 11 and Friday 18 September.

We’ll be back on Friday 25 September.
Until then, here are a few events around
the globe you might like to know about



London | UK
Don McCullin: Eighty
Hamiliton’s Gallery
9 September > 3 October
Exhibition honouring McCullin’s 80th birthday: each print in the exhibition is in an oversized format – the scale enhancing their monumentality and power.

The London Art Book Fair
Whitechapel Gallery
10 > 13 September 2015
Highlights include Michael Craig-Martin in discussion with his former student Fiona Rae.


Berlin | Germany
Piet Mondrian. The Line
Martin-Gropius-Bau
4 September > 6 December 2015
Exhibition illustrating the development of Mondrian’s work from before lines and the organisation of image areas dominated his abstract creations.

Sol Lewitt – Wall Drawings, Grids on Black and White
Konrad Fischer Galerie
3 September > 31 October

+

Düsseldorf | Germany
Sol Lewitt – Wall Drawings, Grids on Color
Konrad Fischer Galerie
4 September > 31 October
Two solo exhibitions of LeWitt’s wall drawings running almost concurrently at both the gallery’s venues.


New York City | USA
Mike Kelley
Hauser & Wirth
10 September 10 > 24 October 2015
Exhibition on the late Los Angeles artist who reworked the imagery and mythology of the popular American comic book hero, Superman.

Gego: Autobiography of a Line
Dominique Lévy
10 September 10 > 24 October 2015
Exhibition of German-born Venezuelan artist Gego (Gertrude Goldschmidt, 1912 > 1994), in whose intricate wire sculpture, line becomes a dimensional language with which to describe architectural space and engage the human body.


Paris | France
Toshio Shibata: Night Photographs
Polka Gallery
12 September > 31 October 2015
Japanese photographer of the postwar generation is particularly known for his monumental infrastructure photographs. The Night Photographs, taken exclusively at night in the 80s, but only now put on to the public display are black and white pictures when his current work is in colour.


Hong Kong | China
Nam June Paik – The Late Style
Gagosian Gallery
17 September > 7 November 2015
Video sculptures, paintings, and drawings produced during the last decade of Paik’s life, many of which have never been exhibited, will be presented together with key works from the 1960s through the 1980s.


Milan | Italy
Atlante del gesto
Fondazione Prada
18 September > 3 October 2015
A series of choreographic actions conceived by Virgilio Sieni for Fondazione Prada’s new Milan venue.


Lausanne | Switzerland
The memory of images:
The iconographic collection of the Canton de Vaud
Musée de l’Elysée
18 September 2015 > 3 January 2016
Founded in 1896 by the pastor Paul-Louis Vionnet (1830-1914), the collection contains hundreds of thousands of images covering the history of the medium. This presentation chronicles the beginnings of documentary photography applied to the inventory of local heritage and the history of the Canton of Vaud.


Amsterdam | The Netherlands
ZeroNow: on the Topicality of Zero
Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam
24 September > 25 September 2015
A symposium about Zero one of the mid-20th century’s most interesting and influential art groups, with Rem Koolhaas (OMA, Rotterdam), among other prominent international speakers.


Tell us what you think
The Blog is about art, architecture, books, design and gardens, and anything else that currently interests us that we think might interest you.

The Blog’s publishers insist that all images supplied for publication in our posts are cleared for that use before being sent to us. Whether pictures are sent to us as email attachments or made available as downloadable files, any responsibility for fees that may, under any circumstances whatsoever, fall due, must be borne by the source supplier


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