Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Travel | Trompe L’oeil / Costa del Sol

Friday, July 13th, 2018

Trompe L’oeil 1



Trompe L’oeil Plants & Flowers
Photographs by Pedro Silmon
Estepona | Spain



The Blog has been on holiday



Trompe L’oeil 2



Trompe L’oeil 3



Trompe L’oeil 4



Trompe L’oeil 5



Trompe L’oeil 5



All images © Pedro Silmon 2018


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Photography | Who was Who in 20th Century Art

Friday, June 22nd, 2018

Jeff Koons, 1993
Vera Isler
© VG-Bildkunst,
Bonn 2018



Artist Complex.
Photographic Portraits from
Baselitz to Warhol
Museum für Fotografie
Berlin | Germany
29 June > 7 October 2018



Most of us know what Andy Warhol and Pablo Picasso looked like. But, until the Renaissance, when the likes of Michaelangelo began surreptitiously inserting images of themselves into their own paintings, few outside their close circle of family, friends and patrons were able to identify them. That isn’t to say that people wouldn’t have been curious, however, the situation changed little until the invention of photography in the 19th century, when the first photographs of artists such as Edgar Degas, were produced. Coincidentally, the photographic portraits included in this forthcoming exhibition at Berlin’s Museum für Fotografie are restricted to the period from 1917, when Degas died, to the year 2000.

Would you recognise the German artist George Baselitz? If you saw a picture of Sonia Delaunay would you know it was her? A portrait of Jean Arp is included in this exhibition but do you know what his equally-talented wife, the artist, painter, sculptor, textile designer, furniture and interior designer, architect and dancer, Sophie Taeuber-Arp, looked like?

Alberto Giacometti,
Paris 1960,
Christer Strömholm
© Christer Strömholm /
Strömholm Estate



Marina Abramovic, 1994,
Thomas Adel
© Thomas Adel



Not content to admit that the images going on show will simply satisfy visitors’ superficial curiosity about the 20th century artists whose work they are familiar with but whose faces they may not know, the curators of Artist Complex are at pains to explain that their aim is to establish that what an artist looks, or looked like, matters. Taking the idea of the artist as often being associated with ingenuity, creativity and freedom of composition and linking it to the theories of Swiss psychiatrist and psychoanalyst Carl Gustav Jung, who defined a ‘complex’ as ‘a structure of feelings, thoughts and memories that determine our thoughts and actions,’ might be over-intellectualising things just a bit, though, when, in many cases, the artists’ complex and/or debauched lifestyles and their interactions with peers would have had an equally-influential effect upon their own appearance. The personality and point of view of the photographer, as well as the relationship between the photographer and the artist – for example, that between Alfred Stieglitz and Georgia O’Keeffe – undoubtedly had a very significant bearing on the resulting portraits, too.

Jean Arp, 1958,
Pablo Volta
© Pablo Volta



Georg Baselitz, 1989,
Jérôme Schlomoff
© Jérôme Schlomoff, 1988


Featuring around 160 works, Artist Complex. Photographic Portraits from Baselitz to Warhol at the Museum für Fotografie features portraits of world-famous artists such as Salvador Dalí, Frida Kahlo, Jeff Koons, Marina Abramović and Max Beckmann, as well as some less-familiar names, produced by a broad range of international photographers including Berenice Abbott, Brassaï, Henri-Cartier Bresson, Gisèle Freund and Arnold Newman, and again, some more obscure ones. All of the portraits on show are from the extensive collection of Angelika Platen, who is well-known in Germany for her own photographs of artists.

All images courtesy Museum für Fotografie and The Platen Collection


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Books | Marcel Breuer: Godfather of Brutalism

Friday, June 15th, 2018

Breuer in the fourth-
floor gallery at the
Witney Museum of
American Art, 1966



Marcel Breuer:
Building Global Institutions
Edited by Barry Bergdoll
and Jonathan Massey
Lars Müller Publishers
368 pp / 345 images,
Paperback,
English text,
Available now



Concrete wall of the
Conference Building
and Secretariat
of UNESCO’s Paris
headquarters



The Witney Museum
of American Art, from
the corner of Madison
Avenue and East
Seventy-Fifth Street



Based around a series of scholarly essays drawing on newly available documents held in the Marcel Breuer Digital Archive at Syracuse University, this book contains a great deal of awe-inspiring architectural photography. Some of the images of Breuer’s sculptural buildings are splashed across spreads, while others are included in what might be described as mood boards for 20th century reinforced concrete buildings, or, if you will, brutalist modernism, which is currently enjoying a surge of renewed interest.

By the early 1960s,
Marcel Breuer &
Associates were
involved in numerous,
major international
projects, such as these
in The Netherlands



Breuer (1902 > 81), originally from Hungary, was one of the first students at the Bauhaus and went on to become a teacher there. After its closure, he practised briefly in the UK before emigrating to the USA in 1937, where he further developed the innovative concepts that would make him one of the world’s most influential and sought-after architects. With the recent reopening of Breuer’s Whitney Museum of American Art building (completed 1966) as the Met Breuer in New York, a wider audience has been introduced to and are gaining new insights into the large-scale buildings he built and the cities he planned from the 1930s onwards.

Bell Banner and
church, St John’s
Abbey Church,
Minnesota, USA



In-depth examinations of Breuer’s most famous projects, such as St John’s Abbey, Minnesota, USA (1953, with later additions), UNESCO House, Paris, France (1953), Bronx Campus, New York, USA (1959 > 61) and IBM Research Centre, La Gaude, France (1960 > 62) are all included, however, some of his less-well-known work is also covered in detail. For example, one essay documents how, in 1936, while he was based in London, Breuer collaborated with FRS Yorke to design a model of an ‘ideal’ town – The Garden City of the Future – that would later influence the architecture and planning of post-war British New Towns as well as the monuments of Brasilia.

Innovative high-
and mid-rise housing
developments in
France produced by
the company during
the 1960s and 70s



Presented almost entirely in black and white, and with images in every shade of grey – like the colour of the material the buildings shown inside are constructed from – Marcel Breuer: Building Global Institutions from Lars Müller Publishers is a bold and uncompromising, compact book package. It must be said, however, that some of the smaller drawings suffer and become almost meaningless as a result of being reproduced too small.

All pages from the book courtesy Lars Müller Publishers


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Exhibitions | Roland (Don’t Call me an ‘Artist’) Topor

Friday, June 8th, 2018

Monkey Hammer
on the Chin
, 1972

Lithograph.
Galerie KK Klaus
Kiefer, Essen



Roland Topor
Panoptikum
Museum Folkwang
Essen | Germany
29 June > 30 September 2018



Schlusschor, 1991.
Theatre poster for
Münchner Kammerspiele

Offset print.
Deutsches Plakatmuseum
im Museum Folkwang



Dark but sharply witty, Roland Topor’s pen and ink drawings, sometimes with a flat wash of colour added, focusing on the relationship between the sexes, the absurdities of human existence, and the futility of endeavour was the visual equivalent of literature. During the 1970s, he produced many illustrations for Elle (France), and, from 1971-1995, regularly for The New York Times. Alongside prominent international contemporaries such as Milton Glaser and Tommy Ungerer, Topor’s work was a mainstay of the illustration annuals, eagerly pored over by art students of the period, and would influence a whole generation of magazine illustrators, who came to the fore over the next couple of decades.

Topor (1938 > 1997), however, never restricted himself to illustration. Having trained at the Beaux-arts de Paris in the 1950s, he vehemently rejected being pigeonholed as an ‘artist’. His illustrations had first appeared, in 1958, in the dada- and surrealist-flavoured Bizarre revue but he would go on to become a successful novelist, playwright, actor, costume and stage designer, filmmaker, songwriter and television writer. Few have enjoyed such success across so many diverse areas of creativity.

The Tin Drum, 1979.
Film poster

Offset print,
Deutsches Plakatmuseum
im Museum Folkwang



Suzanne’s Wobble, 1977.
Ink pen and coloured pencil.

Sammlung Jakob
und Philipp Keel



You’re a real
moron, Samuel
, 1968
Ink pen and coloured pencil.

Sammlung Jakob
und Philipp Keel



Of Polish-Jewish origin but born in Paris, Topor spent the early years of his life hidden from the Nazis in South East France. Roman Polanski, from a remarkably similar background, made a film adaptation of Topor’s novel The Tenant (Le Locataire chimérique, 1964 – extended and republished 2006) in 1976, casting himself in the lead role. In 1979, Topor was himself cast in the role of Renfield in Werner Herzog’s film Nosferatu the Vampire. Meanwhile, in 1965 his animated short film Les Escargots, created with animator René Laloux, and incorporating a scene in which a giant snail snatches a scantily-clad woman through her bedroom window and drags her inside his shell, had won the Special Jury Prize at the Cracow Film Festival. His feature-length animated film La planète sauvage (The Fantastic Planet, 1973) earned him a special prize at the 1973 Cannes Film Festival.

Wilful, 1978.
From the series Three
Images of Success
.

Lithograph.
Sammlung Jakob und
Philipp Keel



Topor’s predilection for exposing the hidden meaning of myths and fables was a legacy of his Polish roots. He combined it with his surrealist influences from Rene Magritte, and the sort of stinging political criticism that has lived on in France since the Revolution to devastating effect. Between 1961 and 1966, he worked on the satirical journal Hara-Kiri from where many of the staff went on to form Charlie Hebdo. Rather than a humorist he, reportedly, considered himself a ’smart-arse’ or ‘piss-taker’ and, in 1983, was responsible for creating the popular French TV series Téléchat, which parodied news broadcasts. United Dead Artists published a large format book ReBonjour (Hello again) of Topor’s – often erotic – linocuts, in 2010.

If you missed Topor: a Vision of the World at Paris’s Bibliothèque nationale de France last summer, try to see Panoptikum at Museum Folkwang, which, with a selection of 200 works, including films and costume designs, provides an overview of the diverse output one of the most adroit and adaptable creative minds of his generation.

All images by Roland Topor © VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2018, courtesy Museum Folkwang


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Art | Bodys Isek Kingelez: Extreme Model World

Friday, May 11th, 2018

Africanisch (detail), 1994
Paper, paperboard, plastic,
various other materials
Private collection
Photo Kleinefenn



Bodys Isek Kingelez:
City Dreams
Museum of Modern Art
New York | USA
26 May 2018 > 1 January 2019



Bodys Isek Kingelez
in Kinshasa, 1990
Photo André Magnin,
courtesy André Magnin



The idea of 21st-century visionaries creating buildings and even whole cities from recycled materials doesn’t seem that strange. In remote Kinshasa however, in 1978, when artist Bodys Isek Kingelez started to make his ‘extreme models’ or ‘extreme maquettes,’ of buildings out of found materials, such as bottle caps, commercial packaging and plastic, the Belgians and French who worked at the National Museum, staggering in confusion and disbelief, accused him of having stolen his technique. Soon after the Museum gave him a job as a restorer and ‘banned’ him from making sculpture.

But Kingelez persevered and although in the early 1980s, he had still never seen any city other than Kinshasa, ‘not even in photos’, the intricately-constructed models he was making began to develop into his vision of a world that he believed could be built and lived in, in the present, or in the future, and represented his hopes of renewal in a de-colonised Africa. ‘I wanted my art to serve the community that is being reborn to create a new world,’ he would say later, his Utopia still to materialise, ‘I created these cities so there would be lasting peace, justice and universal freedom. They will function like small secular states with their own political structure, and will not need policemen or an army.’

Ville de Sète 3009, 2000
Collection Musée International
des Arts Modestes, Sète, France
© Pierre Schwartz ADAGP,
courtesy MIAM



Nippon Tower, 2005
Courtesy Aeroplastics
Contemporary, Brussels
Photo Vincent Everarts



Belle Hollandaise, 1991
Collection Groninger Museum
Photo Marten de Leeuw



Plagued by poverty, mistrust in the country’s banks and a deepening economic crisis Kinshasa, capital of the Democratic Republic of Congo (previously the Belgian Congo, briefly called Zaire), where bumper to bumper traffic clogs the city while the outskirts are without either roads or electricity, has become one of the world’s worst megacities. Perhaps if its authorities and decision-makers had aligned themselves with Kingelez’s way of thinking, things might have turned out somewhat differently. Referring to himself as a designer, an architect, a sculptor, engineer, [and] artist’, he regarded his work as ‘an irrefutable contribution to life and science’, but remained forever conscious that in Africa, art was new and not yet properly understood and that political leaders were wary of it and unable to grasp its importance.

Kinshasa la Belle (detail), 1991
CAAC – The Pigozzi
Collection, Geneva
© Bodys Isek Kingelez
Photo Maurice Aeschimann,
courtesy CAAC



Having been invited to exhibit at Jean Pigozzi’s Contemporary African Art Collection (CAAC) in Paris, by 1989, Bodys Isek Kingelez (b Jean Baptiste, 1948) was catapulted to global acclaim. His work has since been featured in numerous international exhibitions and is included in the private collections of both Pigozzi and Agnes B, among others. In 1992 he began assembling entire cities with numerous buildings, avenues, parks, stadiums and monuments and, when his first large-scale imaginary city, Kimbembele Ihunga – named after the village in which he was born and brought up – was shown there in 1995, Kingelez created an homage to Jean Nouvel, architect of the Fondation Cartier building in Paris.

This month over 30 of the 3000 models Kingelez constructed during the course of his career, which ended with his death in 2015, go on show in Bodys Isek Kingelez: City Dreams at The Museum of Modern Art in New York.

All works by Bodys Isek Kingelez, made from paper, cardboard, plastic and various other materials. All images courtesy MoMA


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Architecture | Wagner: Grandfather of Post-Modernism

Friday, May 4th, 2018

Wiener Werkstätte,
postcard no. 251
with portrait of Otto
Wagner, Vienna, 1911
© MAK



Post Otto Wagner
From Postal Savings
Bank to Post-Modernism
MAK
Vienna | Austria
30 May > 30 September 2018



Viennese architect, Otto Wagner (1841 > 1918) is lauded by many as the father of modernism but he was also – perhaps unwittingly – the grandfather of post-modernism.

In 1894, already in his fifties and having led a cosy and respectable life, Wagner was appointed Professor of architecture at the Vienna Academy of Fine Arts, whereupon he denounced all stylistic imitation as false and inappropriate and became transformed into an outspoken advocate of modern architecture. That same year, however, his bark less than his bite, he designed the first few of Vienna’s elevated and underground railways stations which, although they were an extraordinary feat of logical functionalism and state-of-the-art technology, were executed in conventional neo-renaissance and neo-baroque styles. Possibly under the influence of his former pupils, Josef Hoffmann and Josef Maria Olbrich, both of whom worked for him for several years, Wagner’s approach changed drastically for later stations that featured decorative elements reflecting the secessionist spirit of jugendstil or art nouveau. In 1898 he formally joined the Vienna Secession, remaining a member until 1905.

Grand Banking Hall,
Imperial Royal
Austrian Postal
Savings Bank,
(1904 > 1906),
Vienna, Austria



Warm-air blower,
Imperial Royal
Austrian Postal
Savings Bank,
Vienna, Austria



Linear, smooth and crisp in design, its marble facings on the external walls secured by simple aluminium fastenings, with exposed metal and glass featuring on the inside, Vienna’s Imperial Royal Austrian Postal Savings Bank (1904 > 1906) is regarded as Otto Wagner’s masterpiece. Superficially, it appears as purely functional as the younger, German architect Peter BehrensAEG Turbine Factory building, erected shortly afterwards in Berlin, but Wagner, by now in his 70s, hadn’t felt able to banish decoration and historical reference entirely from his design.

Imperial Royal
Postal Savings Office,
Vienna. From Some
sketches, drafts and
executed projects,
Otto Wagner, 1906



After a long and influential career, Wagner died in 1918. The pure and unadorned modernist aesthetic, devoid of historical reference, which Wagner had flirted with but never quite come to terms with, would come to dominate international architecture after the publication of Le Corbusier’s Vers Une Architecture, in 1923, and thereafter would go unchallenged for almost 30 years. In the 1950s, however, American architect Robert Venturi (b 1925) – later dubbed father of post-modernism – and similarly-minded others began to criticise it as blithely functionalist and symbolically vacuous. Their ideas began to circulate and would develop into a global movement. However, despite the name that came to identify it, and its implicit threat of burying modernism in its shadow, and although it would eventually metamorphose and mutate into the multi-faceted architecture of today, early post-modernism, characterised by a mix of architectural elements extracted from previous centuries of building, with its decorative facades and simplified ornamental forms suggesting symbolic value, marked a return to Otto Wagner’s late 19th-century and early 20th century somewhat muddled, pre-modern approach to design.

Post Otto Wagner: From the Postal Savings Bank to Post-Modernism at MAK marks the 100th anniversary of Otto Wagner’s death and looks at his influence on his students and on later generations of architects and designers.

All images courtesy MAK
Photos © Hagen Stier, 2015


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Art | Domenico Gnoli: Big Time

Friday, April 27th, 2018

Curl, 1969
Acrylic and sand
on canvas



Domenico Gnoli:
Detail of a Detail

Luxembourg & Dayan
New York City | USA
3 May 14 July 2018



Domenico Gnoli
in his studio,
S’Estaca, Majorca,
October 1969



Handsome, stylish and on the verge of recognition as a major painter due to the success of his first New York show, in 1970, Italian artist, Domenico Gnoli, aged 36, died of cancer.

Soon forgotten, his paintings, for the most part, disappeared into obscure collections. Taschen’s Art of the 20th Century, published in 2000, granted Gnoli little more than a passing mention, however, four decades after his death, visionary fashion figure Miuccia Prada, who had discovered and begun buying up his work, showed some items at the 2011 Venice Biennale and, effectively, brought about his resurrection.

Originally from Rome, where he worked as a theatre set designer, Gnoli had relocated to New York, supporting himself with regular illustration commissions from magazines such as Sports Illustrated and Fortune, while he transformed himself into an artist.

Escarpin vu
de dos
, 1967

Acrylic and sand
on canvas



Scarpa di
fronte
, 1967

Acrylic and sand
on canvas



Characterised by their immediacy and by his precise treatment of their subject matter: everyday items of clothing including shoes, suits, shirts, slippers, household objects, as well as personal details, such as the back of a head or a single ringlet of hair (see top) – always in monumental isolation – Gnoli’s works suggest an anonymous or absent person, and were, apparently, symbolic interpretations of his own feelings about the emptiness and depersonalisation of modern life. Ironically, they could now be seen to symbolise his own short life and truncated career, during which he produced around 145 finished paintings, of which only a few dozen survive.

Chair, 1969
Acrylic and sand
on canvas



His talent notwithstanding, Gnoli’s tragic story, handsome looks and great personal style – not to mention his Prada patronage – guaranteed the success of his second, and posthumous, New York show at Luxembourg & Dayan in 2012, as well as his enduring popularity with the international fashion crowd.

In its new show, Domenico Gnoli: Detail of a Detail, Luxembourg & Dayan is presenting rarely seen works by the artist in an installation designed by opera director Robert Carson.

All works by Domenico Gnoli: images courtesy Luxembourg & Dayan, New York and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / SIAE Rome.

All works are from private collections.
Photo courtesy Luxembourg & Dayan


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Design | The Art of the Useful

Friday, April 13th, 2018

Johanna Grawunder
Specchio d’Italia, from
the Street Glow series, 2005
Acrylic, mirrored glass,
fluorescent lighting.
Produced for Galerie Italienne
.
Estimate £5,000 > 7,000



Important Design
Phillips
London | UK
Public viewing 19 > 26 April 2018
Sale 26 April 2018



Since the early decades of the 20th century when design, as we currently understand it, was ‘invented’, functionality – at least in theory – has been its defining feature. Ettore Sottsass’s Nefertiti writing desk, below, might appear to be more suited to a gallery space than to one that people inhabit but it was designed to be used. And if at first glance, many of the other items in this ‘Design’ sale can be mistaken for works of art, they are all also, notionally, functional. (In saying that, it’s difficult to imagine what objects such as Shiro Kuramata’s Hammer House hammers, see final image, below, could purposefully be used for).

Sottsass is only one of the many Italians, whose work dominates this sale, which also includes a large number of items by French creators, as well as others from a broad gamut of international names. Like Sottsass, while few of them are artists, per se, many of them, such as American, Johanna Grawunder, whose Specchio d’Italia fluorescent light (above) shines like a beacon celebrating the spirit of the event, have produced work across several disciplines. Based in Milan, Italy and San Francisco, Grawunder’s practice extends from large-scale public installations, across architecture and interiors, to limited edition furniture and the lighting for which she is particularly well-known.

Gio Ponti
Two hand mirrors,
designed 1932, executed 1960s

Mirrored glass, coloured glass.
Produced by Fontana Arte.
Estimate £3,000 > 5,000



Jean Royère
low table c 1955

Indian rosewood-
veneered wood.
Estimate £30,000 > 50,000



László Moholy-Nagy
Prototype desk set, 1946
Pen rest and letter holder,
chromium-plated brass, brass.
Parker 51 pen designed by
Kenneth Parker and Marlin
Baker, 1938.
Estimate £60,000 > 80,000



Bauhaus master and polymath, László Moholy-Nagy, is perhaps best-known for his ground-breaking experiments in art and photography but, vehemently opposed to creative limitations of any kind, in 1946 he designed a prototype for the pen rest and holder shown above.

Throughout his long career, unwilling to be tied to a single discipline, at various times, and often concurrently, Gio Ponti was an architect, ceramicist, interior designer, furniture designer and magazine editor. The two minimal, glass hand mirror designs he created in the 1930s, being sold here as a single lot, above, had not dated by 1963 when they were finally put into production.

Ettore Sottsass Jr
Nefertiti writing desk, 1968 > 1969

Plastic-laminated wood, steel.
Manufactured by Poltronova.

Estimate £40,000 > 60,000



Shiro Kuramata
Pair of Hammer House hammers
designed c 1985

Steel, painted steel, painted wood.
Manufactured by WEST.
Property from the Soseikan House,
Takarazuka, Hyogo, Japan.
Estimate: £2,000 > 3,000



With a total of 171 lots, Important Design at Phillips, also includes items designed by revered creators such as Harry Bertoia, Gabriella Crespi, Pietro Chiesa, Jean-Michel Frank, Shiro Kuramata, François-Xavier Lalanne, George Nakashima, Ico Parisi, Jean Prouvé, Jean Royère, Gino Sarfatti, Carlo Scarpa and Line Vautrin among a host of others.

Images courtesy Phillips


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Design | If You Don’t Like It, Fight It!

Friday, April 6th, 2018

Germar Wambach,
Terror – Error, 1992
© Germar Wambach



Protest!
Resistance Posters
Museum für Gestaltung Zürich
Toni-Arial,
Zürich | Switzerland
20 April > 2 September 2018



Atelier Populaire
(anonymous collective),
On vous intoxique!, 1968
© unknown



1968. It was to be expected that a whole series of international visual arts presentations would mark the anniversary of such a momentous year. To date, we’ve blogged about three directly and indirectly-related events: Klaus Staeck: Sand in the GearboxDay by Day: 1968, and Power to the People: Political Art Now. No doubt, in the coming months, we’ll cover others as we hear about them.

Bruce Kaiper,
Love, 1974
© unknown



Luba Lukova,
Sudan, 1999
© Luba Lukova



Niklaus Troxler, 1992
© ProLitteris



We make no apologies for this: the turmoil the world is currently experiencing – Trump’s roller coaster US presidency, Russia’s sinister undermining of democracy, the madness of Britain’s apparently inexorable exit from the EU, the resurgence of right wing politics across Europe, the inhumanity of the Syria crisis, North Korea’s dangerous posturing, the destructive nature of Islamic extremism, the economic imbalance caused by globalisation, our growing awareness of the seriousness of environmental issues, as well the battle raging for women’s rights – render 2018 shows, such as these and this forthcoming one in Switzerland, particularly timely and thought-provoking.

Luis Veiga, 2016
© Luis Veiga



Protest! Resistance Posters at Museum für Gestaltung Zürich will bring together a selection of some 300 posters from a host of international designers, the majority of which were produced during the past 50 years.

All posters from Museum für Gestaltung Zürich, Poster Collection, courtesy Museum für Gestaltung Zürich


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Photography | Africa Shines Through

Friday, March 30th, 2018

Zarita Zevallos
Imperium 2, 2017
Archival pigment print



Refraction: New Photography
of Africa and its Diaspora
Steven Kasher Gallery
NYC | USA
19 April 2 June 2018



Keyezua
Fortia (1), 2017
Giclée print on
Hanhemühle paper



Crack it. Smash it. Break it up into little pieces and scatter it. Glass will continue to refract rays of light that pass through it. This show sets out to demonstrate how cultural identity – in this case, African – reacts in a similar way.

Often ripped from their roots and transported many thousands of miles, or forced to flee wars and pogroms, Africans have seen their cultural identity subdued and trampled upon but never entirely transmuted.

Shawn Theodore
All I Ever Wanted Was
A Reason To Be
, 2018

Archival pigment print



Nona Faustine
Over Her Dead Body,
Tweed Courthouse,
Brooklyn, NY
, 2013

Archival pigment print



Stan Squirewell
Afrosaxson, 2017
Mixed media collage



Flying in the face of centuries of adversity, recent decades have seen the emergence of a new generation of photographers of African descent, based in many different locations across the globe, including Africa itself, with a rich diversity of approaches, determined to reclaim and to reassert their cultural heritage.

Eyerusalem Adugna Jirenga
The City of Saints VII, 2017
Digital archival print



Rendered entirely contemporary by its use of modern photography techniques, such as performative self-portraiture, collage, montage and digital manipulation, while their work – captured through fine quality glass camera lenses – makes bold references to traditional African values, rites and rituals, it is nevertheless undoubtedly characterised by the refractive process that African cultural identity has passed through.

Refraction: New Photography of Africa and its Diaspora at Steven Kasher Gallery presents the work of photographers born in the 1970s, 80s and 90s, living in Addis Ababa, Luanda, Paris, New York and beyond.

All images courtesy Steven Kasher Gallery, New York


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