Posts Tagged ‘Belgium’

Photography | Harry Gruyaert: Fifty-Fifty

Friday, September 7th, 2018

Belgium, Antwerp. Carnival, 1992



Roots by Harry Gruyaert
Gallery Fifty One
and Fifty One Too
Antwerp | Belgium
11 September > 3 November 2018



Belgium, Antwerp. Zoo, 1975



Colour is very important to photographer Harry Gruyaert, so why is a good deal of the work in this show black and white? The truth is complex and personal.

When Gruyaert (b 1941), having studied photography and filmmaking, upped sticks, leaving his home town of Antwerp in 1962, because he found the place so dull that he couldn’t bear to be there any longer, looking for visual stimulation, he moved to Paris. Nine years later, having spent time in India, Japan, Morocco and New York – where he discovered the vibrant hues of pop art and thereafter shot exclusively in colour – he developed a morbid fascination with his native country. Deciding to return as often as he could in order to record the banality of Belgian life in all its diversity, he found to his frustration that he could only see Belgium in black and white. It was some years later, when he had become more deeply engrossed in the project, that he felt able to begin shooting in colour.

Belgium, Banneux, 1975



Belgium, Boom, 1988



Belgium, Province of Limburg, 1975



Shot between 1970 and 1992, the substantial body of photographs Gruyaert produced – humour is to be found within it but not much joy – tell the story of his relationship with the land and the people he rejected through the eye of a detached voyeur, obsessively observing all that he was no longer a part of.

Although the colour allows for more complex, painterly compositions – of which Gruyaert is a master – and the viewer is conscious of an obvious time shift towards a more affluent decade – occasionally lifting the mood – little separates the content of the colour and black and white images.

Belgium, Brussels. Palais des Beaux Arts-Museum, 1981



Gruyaert, who continues to live in Paris, and insists he is not a photojournalist, nevertheless joined Magnum Photos in 1982. In the early 1970s, while he was living in London, he produced his TV Shots, a series of photographs of distorted colour television images, resembling pop art paintings. Half documentary photographer/half fine artist, Gruyaert’s images in Roots contain as many clues to his struggle with the conflicting strands of his own creativity – contradictions to which he freely admits – and his feelings about his nationality during the 70s and 80s, as they do to the cultural identity of Belgians living in Belgium in the same period.

The monograph Harry Gruyaert was published by Thames and Hudson in 2015. Retrospective exhibitions of the photographer’s work were held at Paris’s Maison Européenne de la Photographie in 2015 and at the Fotomuseum Antwerp in 2018.

The colour images included in Roots by Harry Gruyaert (first published in book form in 2012, and recently republished), are being shown in Gallery Fifty One while, simultaneously, the black and white prints will be on view at Fifty One Too.

All photographs by Harry Gruyaert, ©Harry Gruyaert, courtesy Gallery Fifty One.
All images are archival pigment prints, printed later


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The Blog is about art, architecture, books, design, 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 made available 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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Photography | Saul Leiter’s Fragmented Fashion

Friday, November 25th, 2016

Harper’s Bazaar, Mexico (fashion), 1960



Saul Leiter
Gallery Fifty One Too
Antwerp | Belgium
25 November 2016 > 28 January 2017



Carriage SeriesHarper’s Bazaar, October 1960



You don’t look at a Jackson Pollock painting; you don’t look at a Willem de Kooning. You look into them. The same is true of these titans of abstract expressionism’s contemporary and close associate, Saul Leiter’s photographic work, in which the subject is often fragmented, obscured by reflections, condensed between surfaces, or otherwise obstructed by passers-by and blurred incidental foreground detail.

Drawn to surfaces and textures, to shapes and shadows, and to the fluid expanses between the abstract and the figurative, Leiter, speaking of the ambiguity that runs through his work, once said: ‘I like it when one is not certain what one sees. When we do not know why the photographer has taken a picture, and when we do not know why we are looking at it, all of a sudden we discover something that we start seeing. I like this confusion.’

Self-portrait with Deborah



Untitled, 1950s



Leiter (1923 > 2013), born in Pittsburgh, had moved to New York in 1946 intending to be a painter – in the early days he exhibited alongside de Kooning – and although he continued to paint throughout his life, he became engrossed with the creative potential of photography as an art form. Starting with black and white, by the early 1950s he was successfully experimenting with colour, and in 1953 a substantial group of his colour photographs were selected by Edward Steichen for an exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art.

Carol Brown, Harper’s Bazaar, c 1960



Perhaps on the basis of his street photography – for which he is best-known – of New York’s East Village, where he lived and worked for more than 60 years, Leiter has been lumped in with the amorphous ‘New York School of Photography’, which is said to have included, among others, pragmatic photojournalists such as Diane Arbus, Richard Avedon, Bruce Davidson, Robert Frank, William Klein, Helen Levitt, and Weegee. Leiter, however, who happened to reside in the city over the same period as them, was light on social realism. He possessed a sensibility that was rooted more firmly in fine art, and while stylistically his work was closer to the ‘New York School’ painters, his lyrical treatment of subject matter had much in common with the gentler compositions of an earlier epoch: that of the Impressionists, and with the paintings of French symbolist artist Pierre Bonnard (1867 > 1947), who endeavoured to evoke mystical ideas, emotions, and states of mind via the medium of scenes from everyday life.

Barbara, c 1951



In the late 1950s, recognising Leiter’s unique eye for beauty and elegance combined with a modern edge, art director Henry Wolf commissioned him to photograph fashion, first for Esquire and later for Harper’s Bazaar as well as for Show. Very soon Leiter was working in Europe for the French magazine Elle, and in Britain for Vogue, Queen, and Nova. Nevertheless, the fickleness of the fashion world ensured that his good fortune didn’t last, and he sank into a lengthy period of obscurity. In time, however, his reputation was restored after several exhibitions at New York’s Howard Greenberg Gallery in the 1990s, when his work experienced a new surge of popularity and his colour photography, in particular, garnered wide acclaim. A monograph, Early Color, was published by Steidl in 2006 and was quickly followed by a series of international exhibitions, beginning with In Living Color (2006), at the Milwaukee Museum of Art. Solo shows of Leiter’s photography have since been presented at Fondation Henri Cartier-Bresson, Paris, the Jewish Historical Museum, Amsterdam, Musée de l’Elysée, Lausanne, and Diechtorhallen, Hamburg. His work is now included in the permanent collections of The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, The Art Institute of Chicago, The Baltimore Museum of Art, and the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, among many other public and private collections.

Carmen, Harper Bazaar, c 1960



Saul Leiter at Gallery Fifty One Too in Antwerp, which has regularly shown Leiter’s work, runs concurrently with the city’s FOMU Foto Museum retrospective. The majority of the photographs included in the Gallery Fifty One Too exhibition, however, have never been presented before, and provide insight into less familiar elements of the photographer’s diverse oeuvre, particularly his work for fashion magazines.

All photographs © Saul Leiter Foundation, courtesy Gallery Fifty One


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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 | Hessie: Minimalist Feminist Artist

Friday, October 7th, 2016

Hessie in New York, 1960s
Courtesy Domingo Djuric



Hessie
Soft résistance
La Verrière / Fondation d’entreprise Hermès
Brussels | Belgium
7 October > 10 December 2016



Untitled, 1968/1970
Embroidery in pink thread
on paper, two needles



In 1962, seeking to develop her artistic career, a strong-minded and adventurous, black 26 year-old named Carmen Lydia Djuric left her Cuban birthplace and went to live in New York. Having become involved in the thriving art and feminist scene there, she met Montenegrin artist Miodrag Duric, known as Dado, three years her senior. Dado was a protégé of the French artist Jean Dubuffet, and was on a three-month visit to the city. Carmen and Dado fell in love and married. The couple returned together to France and set up home in a converted mill in a small village outside of Paris.

Les Trous (Holes), 1973
Embroidery in blue thread
on perforations in cotton canvas



Untitled, 1990
Coloured fabric and white thread



Grillage (Grid form), 1976
Embroidery in blue, grey and
turquoise thread on cotton canvas



The minimalist work Hessie had encountered in New York was most often produced by male artists, and struck her as authoritarian, monumental and frankly, too masculine for her tastes. In protest, she opted for a softer and freer sort of minimalism, more in tune with her own anti-authoritarian principles, that nevertheless employed a strict economy of means to maximum effect, and began to produce works with the lightest of touch that drew on the craft tradition. Embroidery constitutes the major part of her seductive, rigorous and repetitive compositions of geometric designs in white or coloured thread on unbleached cotton canvas. Given functional, descriptive titles: Grillages (grid forms), Bâtons pédagogiques (teaching sticks), Végétation or Machines à écrire (typewriters), more rarely, her works feature stitched-on buttons, holes, typewritten letters and printed ephemera.

Coming to prominence with the French feminist movement of the 1970s, Hessie earned herself a solo exhibition at the Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris in 1975, after which she was included in Combative Acts, Profile and Voices – An Exhibition of Women Artists from Paris, at New York’s AIR Gallery in 1976.

Déchets collages grillage
(‘Waste paper collages grid form’),
1978/1979
Wrapping paper/packaging stitched
on to cotton canvas



Untitled, 1970
Metal and plastic elements and
a piece of card mounted



Hessie celebrated her 80th birthday this year. Dado, with whom she had five children died in 2010. As minimalism went out of fashion in the late 1970s, and feminism lost its provocative edge, Hessie’s popularity as an artist gradually diminished. However, a major revival of interest in her work – although salvageable, much of it had been badly-stored for many years at the mill – was triggered in 2009, when she was given a solo show at the Musée National d’Art Moderne (Paris). The same year Hessie was included in elles@centrepompidou, Women artists in the collections of the Musée National d’Art Moderne. She is represented by Galerie Arnaud Lefebvre (Paris), which, last year, showed her retrospective Survival Art 1969 > 2015.

Hessie: Soft résistance at La Verrière / Fondation d’entreprise Hermès is the second exhibition in the Ballistic Poetry series, devoted to exploration of the disconnection between intention and intuition in certain forms of radical abstraction.

All works by Hessie
Images courtesy Fondation d’entreprise Hermès
All photos of works by Béatrice Hatala © Galerie Arnaud Lefebvre


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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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Travel | In Brussels: Journey to the Centre of the EU

Friday, July 8th, 2016

Au Chapati, Tweekerkenstraat, Brussels



In Brussels
Journey to the Centre of the EU
A Travelogue



The man sitting beside me – my daughter and my seats are not together – is American. He’s drinking Belgian Leffe beer and his American friends who encircle me drink Belgian Stella Artois, or Italian mineral water. The international aura is refreshing. I feel positive about this trip.

It feels like an escape. If only temporary. Back into sanity…

The UK having just a few days earlier taken the mad decision to exit the EU, here I am on the Eurostar train to Brussels. But this journey is unconnected to politics. My daughter, whose travelling companion I am – whose formative years were spent in Munich, who lived and worked in Berlin, and whose chronic Lyme disease (Lyme borreliosis) health problem the NHS doesn’t recognise, has an appointment with a specialist at a renowned private clinic – shocked at the referendum result and its implications for her future, wants to hear no more of politics, at least for now.

Through the windows on either side of the carriage, the bucolic Kent countryside slides by. It is suddenly replaced by a deep blackness that the reflections of the lights, coming on as we enter the Tunnel, make a futile effort to penetrate, and then accepting defeat, fade into obscurity.

One of my neighbours, having just returned laden from the bar, distributes cans of the German-style beer Kronenbourg 1664, brewed in the French city of Strasbourg – official seat of the European Parliament – accompanied by napkins with the message ‘Je ne regrette rien’, printed on them. It has become hot and stuffy, the atmosphere oppressive. The Americans begin to complain amongst themselves about the ineffectual air conditioning. I long for the train to come out of the tunnel and for the clean, fresh air of mainland Europe.

‘Franglais Vins’, sprawling in huge letters across a massively long shed announce our arrival in France. At Calais-Fréthun, the Americans go, and suddenly the carriage is half-empty. It’s quieter, less claustrophobic, but the heat remains.

Good news! Three UK, the mobile phone service provider I’m with sends me a text letting me know that their roaming service is free in EU countries.

The train picks up speed. The ‘continental’ landscape is wider with (minus the ceiling) 180-degree views to the horizon. It’s sunny. It’s bright. The English couple sitting behind me pull the blind down all the way. I’m skimming through Eurostar’s free magazine, Metropolitan, that features a myriad of interesting cultural events in the UK, around Europe and beyond. An Englishman sitting across the aisle and a seat in front of me, I noticed, started reading The Daily Telegraph as soon as he sat down and hasn’t, to my knowledge, once looked out of the window.

The English honey roast ham in my sandwich is brought to life by the zesty heat of the French mustard – I find myself wondering what the future holds for the German-owned Aldi supermarket near my home, where the latter was bought.

We stop briefly at Lille and soon after the vernacular architecture is unfamiliar – I think we must be in Belgium. We’re entering Brussels. We’re there.

There are armed soldiers at the station…

The taxi driver is friendly and – just like his London equivalent – keen to chat – in French, which my daughter is good at, while I’m not. I can follow what they are saying, however. He speaks a little English. Flemish, too, and some Dutch. He has visited Liverpool, Manchester and London. He’s Syrian and has lived in Belgium for thirty years. He drives us to our hotel on the northern outskirts of Brussels.

That evening, we both choose the chicken brochette at one of the two nearby eateries, La Petite Fourchette, which serves French, as well as Asian and Greek-style food. Within seconds a basket of sliced baguette and a bowl of prawn crackers arrive on our table. I had ordered frites as an accompaniment. They come with mayonnaise and ketchup. My daughter ordered rice, and when it arrives it’s the sticky, Chinese version.

My daughter prefers to go to the clinic alone…

A day ticket for the entire Brussels underground network is only €7.50. My French, as I’ve said, is not good – my Flemish is non-existent – and a man who speaks no English is at first reluctant to help me to use the ticket machine, but as we work together his attitude softens. Seemingly pleased at our success, he smiles and goes on his way. At Simonis, a suburban metro station I pass through, the platform walls are lined with pretty Persian rug designs rendered in tiling. At Rond Point R Schuman Plein, where the European Commission building stands, it’s eerily quiet. There are many police – some mounted – and roadblocks; barbed wire is strung across the pavements. The epi-centre of European government feels remote and isolated, while the nearby grand boulevards dominated by heavy, belle époque architecture, make the few figures wandering around them appear subservient, insignificant.

European Commission building at Rond Point R Schuman Plein



I notice that here in Brussels the road markings are better defined than in Germany, but that the paving blocks almost everywhere are badly laid down and wobble. I stand still to consult my map. Someone stops and asks me if I’m lost. I’m not, but she insists on giving me directions.

While a man inside, wearing a hi-vis jacket, uses a small petrol-driven machine – the like of which I’ve never seen before – to trim the edges of the lawns, a couple of soldiers duck into the Jardins Botaniques for a quick smoke; the camouflaged patterns on their combat gear that make them look so foreign on the city streets, blending in with the verdant foliage, briefly conceals their presence.

If it’s of interest, I ate a light lunch at Jacques Brel’s old hangout Le Mort Subite (The Sudden Death), and returned to La Petite Fourchette for a lonely supper – steak frites – my daughter was staying overnight at a friend’s place.

The following day my daughter returns to the clinic…

Colossal and super-shiny, the 103 metre-high structure, based upon a single iron atom, The Atomium was built for the 1958 Brussels Expo. I’ve had no breakfast. The coffee machine in the café here is broken but the guy at the ticket counter tells me I can get a coffee in the restaurant at the top. The lift had been the fastest in the world when it was first installed and seconds after entering, I’m sitting in a white Panton chair, under the domed roof of the restaurant that occupies the top half of the uppermost sphere. They can serve me coffee, but have no pastries, however the waitress kindly offers to go down to the café on the base level to fetch me croissants. Before she sets off, she gives me the coffee, which isn’t very hot. I’m looking out of a rain-spotted circular window and down on a collection of models of European landmark buildings in Mini-Europa, the theme park which sits near The Atomium’s foot. A hoard of tiny figures wandering around in brightly-coloured rain ponchos are passing a pocket-sized Eiffel Tower and a stolid Brandenburg Gate, heading for the little British Houses of Parliament. Defiant, seemingly impervious to the storm that is approaching, the diminutive European Commission building looks on from its corner. Fifteen minutes later, the waitress returns. I have drunk half my coffee and the remainder is cold. ‘Je vous remercie, madame’ I say to her with a smile – remembering a bit of schoolboy French – thankful for just something to eat. Wolfing it down, I leave her a big tip and go.

That evening, we tried the other restaurant, a bit further along the road, La Brasserie, where my daughter ate herring and I foolishly ordered a steak Americaine that turned out to be steak tartare, which I couldn’t eat, and which the kindly waiter exchanged for meatballs.

Our trip has not been a success…

The specialist my daughter had sought out and travelled here to see could offer little help. Had he been sent her reports in advance, he may have been in a better position to offer advice, he told her, but no request for them had been made at the time she booked the appointment. On her second visit to the clinic, on our second morning, she gave blood samples and was afterwards presented with an expensive menu of tests to choose from, but with no advice on which to base her selections. Having ticked a few random options, feeling confused and depressed, she paid the enormous bill and left.

We sit together…

Our seats on the train back to London face Brussels. We watch as, under a sky filled with dark clouds, the city recedes inexorably into the distance.

Text and photographs © Pedro Silmon 2016


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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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Exhibitions | Reminder: Don’t Miss These…

Saturday, August 1st, 2015

McDermott & McGough, Those Moments, 1955, 2010
Tricolour carbon print. Courtesy the artists and Cheim & Read, New York.
On show at The Hammer Museum in Los Angeles, see below



The Blog team return next week.
Whether you’re staying at home or travelling,
here’s our selection of some of the best
of what’s on show this summer >>>



Doug Aitken, Sunset (black and white), 2011
Hand carved foam, epoxy with LED lights and hand silk-screened acrylic.
Courtesy the artist, 303 Gallery, New York, Galerie Eva Presenhuber, Zurich, Victoria Miro Gallery, London and Regen Projects, LA. Photo © Brian Forrest.
On show at the Schirn Kunsthalle Frankfurt, see below



>>> Until 23 August 2015
Coop Himmelb(l)au
Frankfurt Lyon Dalian

DeutschesArchitekturmuseum (DAM)
Frankfurt | Germany
Vienna-based architectural practice with the long-winded name Coop Himme(l)blau Wolf D Prix & Partner, long-time player on the international architecture scene, founded in 1968 in response to the predominance of rectilinear grids, set out to liberate architecture from its functional confines by rendering space more dynamic and buildings gravity-defying. The exhibition presents three of the studio’s latest projects: the new European Central Bank building (2015) in Frankfurt am Main, Germany, the Musée des Confluences (2014) in Lyon, France, and the Dalian International Conference Centre in China (2012), see image below.

>>> Auction 28 Aug 2015
Japanese Whisky
Christie’s
Admiralty | Hong Kong
Featuring Hanyu Ichito’s Full Cards Series of 54 bottles of the spirit, each with beautifully-designed individual labels on a playing card theme, which are expected to sell for HK$1.8 m > 2.4 m / £150,000 > 200,000 / US$230,000 > 310,000.

>>> Until 28 August 2015
Joana Vasconcelos:
Material World

Phillips
(Selling exhibition)
London | UK

Forty works representing various periods of sculptor and installation artist Joana Vasconcelos’s career to date, coinciding with the publication of her monograph by Thames & Hudson.

>>> Until 13 September 2015
Perfect Likeness:
Photography and Composition

The Hammer Museum
Los Angeles | USA

Having reached a point when everyone thinks he / she is a photographer, and where photography of every possible style and quality pervades every corner of our daily lives, this exhibition looks at the carefully composed images of fine art photographers such as Thomas Demand, Andreas Gursky, McDermott & McGough and Jeff Wall.

>>> Until 13 September 2015
Design Derby:
The Netherlands – Belgium (1815 > 2015)

Museum Boijmans
Van Beuningen

Rotterdam | Netherlands

Like for like Dutch and Belgium design objects – from sumptuous and elegant Belgian art nouveau to the more austere Dutch version, and from the contemporary tours de force of Belgium design to the level-headed Dutch design of today – confront one other in friendly competition.

>>> Until 25 October 2015
Fast Fashion
The Shadowy Side of Fashion

Museum für Kunst und
Gewerbe Hamburg

Hamburg | Germany
A critical glimpse behind the scenes of fashion – consumerism, economic interests and ecological issues – throwing light upon fashion and its victims; poverty and affluence; global and local effects; wages and profits; garments and chemicals; clothes and ecology; as well as new fibre technologies.

>>> Until 26 September 2015
Larry Bell 2D-3D:
Glass & Vapor

White Cube, Mason’s Yard
London | UK
Larry Bell (b 1939, Chicago) is a leading exponent of the California ‘Light and Space’ movement. The exhibition includes three early glass installations as well as collages on paper and new, kinetic Light Knot sculptures. To coincide with a major presentation of a Standing Wall installation of thirty-two, six foot square glass panels (c1989 >2014) currently on show at the Chinati Foundation, Marfa, Texas, USA, at White Cube, Bell has installed 6 x 8 An Improvisation.

>>> Until 27 September 2015
Doug Aitken
Schirn Kunsthalle Frankfurt
Frankfurt | Germany
Following on from his Station to Station: A 30 Day Happening extravaganza at London’s Barbican, The Shirn dedicates its entire exhibition space, inside and out, to the impressive work of American multimedia-artist Doug Aitken, in the most comprehensive solo presentation of his film, music, architecture, performance and sculpture in Germany and elsewhere to date, see image above

>>> Until 27 September 2015
Germaine Krull
A Photographer’s Journey

Jeu de Paume
Paris | France
The idea of the female career photographer – rather than dabbler or dilettante – didn’t properly materialise until free-spirited women such as Gertrude Krull (1897 > 1985) thrust herself headlong into the male-dominated mêlée in the 1920s.



One-sheet poster for Sullivan’s Travels, directed by Preston Sturges, 1941
Poster art direction by Maurice Kallis. Courtesy Sikelia Productions.
On show at MoMA in New York, see below

Dalian International Conference Centre, China, by
Coop Himmelb(l)au Wolf D Prix & Partner, in Vienna, Austria

Photo © Duccio Malagamba.
On show at the Deutsches Architekturmuseum, Frankfurt, see above



>>> Until 27 September 2015
What is Luxury?
V&A
London | UK
The world’s biggest museum of the decorative arts and design has a permanent, historic collection of over 4.5 million objects. By definition it is a museum of things, many of which are extremely valuable and considered to be luxurious items. With over 100 objects, ‘From a diamond made from roadkill to a vending machine stocked with DNA, a golden crown for ecclesiastical use to traditional military tailoring, this exhibition addresses how luxury is made and understood in a physical, conceptual and cultural capacity.’

>>> Until September 30
Scorsese Collects [film posters]
Museum of Modern Art
New York City | USA
In celebration of director Martin Scorsese’s enduring commitment to the preservation of international film culture, MoMA presents 34 works from his collection, centred around a rare, billboard-size poster for the 1951 film Tales of Hoffmann. The exhibition will be accompanied by the film series Scorsese Screens throughout August.

>>> Until 4 October 2015
From Bauhaus to Buenos Aires:
Grete Stern & Horacio Coppola

Museum of Modern Art
New York City | USA
The first major exhibition of the German-born Grete Stern and the Argentinean Horacio Coppola, two leading figures of avant-garde photography who, in the 1930s, established themselves on both sides of the Atlantic.

>>> Until 18 October 2015
The 80s. Figurative
Painting in West Germany

Städel Museum
Frankfurt | Germany
Shedding light on the new and dynamic figurative painting that developed in the 1980s almost simultaneously in Berlin, Hamburg and the Rhineland. Works by among many other artists, Martin Kippenberger, Albert Oehlen, and Salomé.

>>> Until 25 October 2015
Barbara Hepworth: Sculpture
for a Modern World

Tate Britain
London | UK
Retrospective of one of Britain’s greatest artists, Barbara Hepworth (1903 > 1975), one of the few women artists to achieve widespread recognition and international prominence, featuring many of her most significant sculptures in wood, stone and bronze alongside her rarely seen works that exemplified modernism from the 1920s onwards.

>>> Until 25 October 2015
Gilbert & George:
The Early Years

Museum of Modern Art
New York City | USA
‘It’s not a collaboration. . . We are two people, but one artist,’ say the inseparable British artists, Gilbert and George, who have been creating art together for almost fifty years. This exhibition focuses on their early years, from 1969 to 1975, when the art world around them was largely engaged in pop, minimal, and conceptual work, while the pair developed a wholly unique vision.

>>> Until 26 October 2015
Radikal Moderne Planen
und Bauen im Berlin
der Sechziger Jahre

/ Planning and Building
in Berlin in the 1960s

Berlinische Galerie
Berlin | Germany
Via 300 known works and recently rediscovered material representing 30 architects, planners, photographers and artists, this is the first detailed examination of a decade in architecture and urban planning that shaped a city divided not only by a wall, but also by political ideologies.

>>> Until 31 October 2015
Stone Fenoyl (1945 > 1987).
An Imaginary Geography.
A Documentary Record

Château de Tours
(in association with Jeu de Paume)
Tours | France

Famous for his ability to discover and nurture new photographers, and for his admiration of anonymous 19th century photographs, iconographer, curator, art buyer, gallery and Vu agency (now Viva) founder, Pierre de Fenoyl was the first director of France’s National Foundation Photography in 1976. Champion of the work of Brassai, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Duane Michals and André Kertész, alongside prints, documents, films and publications, this retrospective also shows the black and white landscape photography he created himself from 1984.

>>> Until 1 November 2015
Fotografia Futurista
Galleria Carla Sozzani
Milan | Italy
With over one hundred original photographs, representing the work of over thirty photographers, this exhibition demonstrates how, over a fifty-year period, the futurists took possession of the photographic language and used it as a medium to capture the pulse of early 20th century life. In so doing, they transformed photography into the dynamic, potent and multifaceted force it became in both art and commerce in the twentieth century.

>>> Until 31 January 2016
Shoes: Pleasure and Pain
V&A
London | UK
Exploring the euphoria and obsession they can inspire, more than 200 pairs of historic and contemporary shoes from the V&A’s unrivalled international collection, worn by or associated with high profile figures including Marilyn Monroe, Queen Victoria, Sarah Jessica Parker and the Hon Daphne Guinness are on display. Famous shoes, such as the ballet slippers designed for Moira Shearer in the 1948 film The Red Shoes, are exhibited alongside footwear by 70 named designers including Manolo Blahnik, Christian Louboutin, Jimmy Choo and Miuccia Prada.



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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Exhibitions | This Summer, Don’t Miss These…

Friday, July 24th, 2015

McDermott & McGough, Those Moments, 1955, 2010
Tricolour carbon print. Courtesy the artists and Cheim & Read, New York.
On show at The Hammer Museum in Los Angeles, see below



The Blog team is away.
Whether you stay at
home or go travelling,
h
ere’s our selection of
some of the best of what’s
on show this summer >>>



Doug Aitken, Sunset (black and white), 2011
Hand carved foam, epoxy with LED lights and hand silk-screened acrylic.
Courtesy the artist, 303 Gallery, New York, Galerie Eva Presenhuber, Zurich, Victoria Miro Gallery, London and Regen Projects, LA. Photo © Brian Forrest.
On show at the Schirn Kunsthalle Frankfurt, see below



>>> Until 23 August 2015
Coop Himmelb(l)au
Frankfurt Lyon Dalian
DeutschesArchitekturmuseum (DAM)
Frankfurt | Germany
Vienna-based architectural practice with the long-winded name Coop Himme(l)blau Wolf D Prix & Partner, long-time player on the international architecture scene, founded in 1968 in response to the predominance of rectilinear grids, set out to liberate architecture from its functional confines by rendering space more dynamic and buildings gravity-defying. The exhibition presents three of the studio’s latest projects: the new European Central Bank building (2015) in Frankfurt am Main, Germany, the Musée des Confluences (2014) in Lyon, France, and the Dalian International Conference Centre in China (2012), see image below.

>>> Auction 28 Aug 2015
Japanese Whisky
Christie’s
Admiralty | Hong Kong
Featuring Hanyu Ichito’s Full Cards Series of 54 bottles of the spirit, each with beautifully-designed individual labels on a playing card theme, which are expected to sell for HK$1.8 m > 2.4 m / £150,000 > 200,000 / US$230,000 > 310,000.

>>> Until 28 August 2015
Joana Vasconcelos:
Material World
Phillips
(Selling exhibition)
London | UK
Forty works representing various periods of sculptor and installation artist Joana Vasconcelos’s career to date, coinciding with the publication of her monograph by Thames & Hudson.

>>> Until 13 September 2015
Perfect Likeness:
Photography and
Composition
The Hammer Museum
Los Angeles | USA

Having reached a point when everyone thinks he / she is a photographer, and where photography of every possible style and quality pervades every corner of our daily lives, this exhibition looks at the carefully composed images of fine art photographers such as Thomas Demand, Andreas Gursky, McDermott & McGough and Jeff Wall.

>>> Until 13 September 2015
Design Derby:
The Netherlands – Belgium (1815 > 2015)
Museum Boijmans
Van Beuningen
Rotterdam | Netherlands

Like for like Dutch and Belgium design objects – from sumptuous and elegant Belgian art nouveau to the more austere Dutch version, and from the contemporary tours de force of Belgium design to the level-headed Dutch design of today – confront one other in friendly competition.

>>> Until 25 October 2015
Fast Fashion
The Shadowy Side of Fashion
Museum für Kunst und
Gewerbe Hamburg

Hamburg | Germany
A critical glimpse behind the scenes of fashion – consumerism, economic interests and ecological issues – throwing light upon fashion and its victims; poverty and affluence; global and local effects; wages and profits; garments and chemicals; clothes and ecology; as well as new fibre technologies.

>>> Until 26 September 2015
Larry Bell 2D-3D:
Glass & Vapor

White Cube, Mason’s Yard
London | UK
Larry Bell (b 1939, Chicago) is a leading exponent of the California ‘Light and Space’ movement. The exhibition includes three early glass installations as well as collages on paper and new, kinetic Light Knot sculptures. To coincide with a major presentation of a Standing Wall installation of thirty-two, six foot square glass panels (c1989 >2014) currently on show at the Chinati Foundation, Marfa, Texas, USA, at White Cube, Bell has installed 6 x 8 An Improvisation.

>>> Until 27 September 2015
Doug Aitken
Schirn Kunsthalle Frankfurt
Frankfurt | Germany
Following on from his Station to Station: A 30 Day Happening extravaganza at London’s Barbican, The Shirn dedicates its entire exhibition space, inside and out, to the impressive work of American multimedia-artist Doug Aitken, in the most comprehensive solo presentation of his film, music, architecture, performance and sculpture in Germany and elsewhere to date, see image above

>>> Until 27 September 2015
Germaine Krull
A Photographer’s Journey
Jeu de Paume
Paris | France
The idea of the female career photographer – rather than dabbler or dilettante – didn’t properly materialise until free-spirited women such as Gertrude Krull (1897 > 1985) thrust herself headlong into the male-dominated mêlée in the 1920s.



One-sheet poster for Sullivan’s Travels, directed by Preston Sturges, 1941
Poster art direction by Maurice Kallis. Courtesy Sikelia Productions.
On show at MoMA in New York, see below

Dalian International Conference Centre, China, by
Coop Himmelb(l)au Wolf D Prix & Partner, in Vienna, Austria
Photo © Duccio Malagamba.
On show at the Deutsches Architekturmuseum, Frankfurt, see above



>>> Until 27 September 2015
What is Luxury?
V&A
London | UK
The world’s biggest museum of the decorative arts and design has a permanent, historic collection of over 4.5 million objects. By definition it is a museum of things, many of which are extremely valuable and considered to be luxurious items. With over 100 objects, ‘From a diamond made from roadkill to a vending machine stocked with DNA, a golden crown for ecclesiastical use to traditional military tailoring, this exhibition addresses how luxury is made and understood in a physical, conceptual and cultural capacity.’

>>> Until September 30
Scorsese Collects [film posters]
Museum of Modern Art
New York City | USA
In celebration of director Martin Scorsese’s enduring commitment to the preservation of international film culture, MoMA presents 34 works from his collection, centred around a rare, billboard-size poster for the 1951 film Tales of Hoffmann. The exhibition will be accompanied by the film series Scorsese Screens throughout August.

>>> Until 4 October 2015
From Bauhaus to Buenos Aires:
Grete Stern & Horacio Coppola

Museum of Modern Art
New York City | USA
The first major exhibition of the German-born Grete Stern and the Argentinean Horacio Coppola, two leading figures of avant-garde photography who, in the 1930s, established themselves on both sides of the Atlantic.

>>> Until 18 October 2015
The 80s. Figurative
Painting in West Germany

Städel Museum
Frankfurt | Germany
Shedding light on the new and dynamic figurative painting that developed in the 1980s almost simultaneously in Berlin, Hamburg and the Rhineland. Works by among many other artists, Martin Kippenberger, Albert Oehlen, and Salomé.

>>> Until 25 October 2015
Barbara Hepworth: Sculpture
for a Modern World

Tate Britain
London | UK
Retrospective of one of Britain’s greatest artists, Barbara Hepworth (1903 > 1975), one of the few women artists to achieve widespread recognition and international prominence, featuring many of her most significant sculptures in wood, stone and bronze alongside her rarely seen works that exemplified modernism from the 1920s onwards.

>>> Until 25 October 2015
Gilbert & George:
The Early Years

Museum of Modern Art
New York City | USA
‘It’s not a collaboration. . . We are two people, but one artist,’ say the inseparable British artists, Gilbert and George, who have been creating art together for almost fifty years. This exhibition focuses on their early years, from 1969 to 1975, when the art world around them was largely engaged in pop, minimal, and conceptual work, while the pair developed a wholly unique vision.

>>> Until 26 October 2015
Radikal Moderne Planen
und Bauen im Berlin
der Sechziger Jahre
/
Planning and Building
in Berlin in the 1960s

Berlinische Galerie
Berlin | Germany
Via 300 known works and recently rediscovered material representing 30 architects, planners, photographers and artists, this is the first detailed examination of a decade in architecture and urban planning that shaped a city divided not only by a wall, but also by political ideologies.

>>> Until 31 October 2015
Stone Fenoyl (1945 > 1987).
An Imaginary Geography.
A Documentary Record
Château de Tours
(in association with Jeu de Paume)
Tours | France
Famous for his ability to discover and nurture new photographers, and for his admiration of anonymous 19th century photographs, iconographer, curator, art buyer, gallery and Vu agency (now Viva) founder, Pierre de Fenoyl was the first director of France’s National Foundation Photography in 1976. Champion of the work of Brassai, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Duane Michals and André Kertész, alongside prints, documents, films and publications, this retrospective also shows the black and white landscape photography he created himself from 1984.

>>> Until 1 November 2015
Fotografia Futurista
Galleria Carla Sozzani
Milan | Italy
With over one hundred original photographs, representing the work of over thirty photographers, this exhibition demonstrates how, over a fifty-year period, the futurists took possession of the photographic language and used it as a medium to capture the pulse of early 20th century life. In so doing, they transformed photography into the dynamic, potent and multifaceted force it became in both art and commerce in the twentieth century.

>>> Until 31 January 2016
Shoes: Pleasure and Pain
V&A
London | UK
Exploring the euphoria and obsession they can inspire, more than 200 pairs of historic and contemporary shoes from the V&A’s unrivalled international collection, worn by or associated with high profile figures including Marilyn Monroe, Queen Victoria, Sarah Jessica Parker and the Hon Daphne Guinness are on display. Famous shoes, such as the ballet slippers designed for Moira Shearer in the 1948 film The Red Shoes, are exhibited alongside footwear by 70 named designers including Manolo Blahnik, Christian Louboutin, Jimmy Choo and Miuccia Prada.


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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 | Duchamp Stripped Bare

Friday, April 19th, 2013

Des Gestes de la Pensée / Gesture, and Thought
La Verrière Hermès
Brussels, Belgium
20th April – 13th July, 2013

To think, to dream, to conceive fine works is a delightful occupation…’, wrote Honoré de Balzac, in his novel Cousin Bette, in the first half of the 19th century. Another famous Frenchman, Marcel Duchamp, who signed a urinal he’d picked up from a plumber’s yard and proclaimed it a work of art (Fountain) in 1917 , would at first glance, appear to have agreed with him. Renowned father of object art, from which conceptual art emerged, Duchamp said he liked living and breathing better than working, and that his art was that of living. But his words were never to be taken at face value and far from being a remote thinker and pure intellectual, who turned his back on the ‘artist’s enslavement to manual dexterity’, Duchamp, almost in secret, completed many finely crafted works.

This exhibition at La Verrière Hermès, assembled by the space’s new curator, Guillaume Désanges, who co-wrote and co-directed the play ‘Le Cerveau’ Master Duchamp’, presented at the Centre Pompidou in March, highlights one of the Foundation’s core commitments: the transmission of artistic and expert artisan skills. Taking Duchamp as a figurehead, Des Gestes de la Pensée / Gesture, and Thought brings together the work of 10 international contemporary artists: Elias Crespin, Hubert Duprat, Hans-Peter Feldmann, Michel François, Ann Veronica Janssens, Irene Kopelman, Anna Maria Maiolino, Benoît Maire, Corey McCorkle and Francisco Tropa, exploring this same fascination with ‘finish’ and craftsmanship as an extension of thought.

The innovative bookbinder Mary Reynolds (1891-1950) was Duchamp’s partner for thirty years. It was Reynolds who, in the 1930s, executed Duchamp’s binding design for Alfred Jarry’s Ubu Roi/Ubu the King, with cut-out U-shaped front and back covers that when fully opened, either side of the B on the spine, spell out UBU. It is not included in the exhibition, but his binding for Prière de Toucher / Pray Touch, an exhibition catalogue for Le Surréalisme en 1947 was a breast made from foam rubber, with pigment, velvet, and cardboard, adhered to removable cover, is. Also on display will be La mariée mise à nu par ses célibataires, même [Boîte Verte], The Bride Stripped Bare by her Bachelors Even [The Green Box] published by Duchamp in 1934, which is a collection of 94 documents – works on paper, photographs, lithographs and drawings – to explain some of his thinking and to show some of the preliminary works relating to The Large Glass.

Duchamp also produced Box in a Valise (From or by Marcel Duchamp or Rrose Sélavy, 1935-41), which is a leather case containing miniature replicas, photographs and colour reproductions of works by Duchamp, and one ‘original’ drawing. An earlier piece Standard Stoppages (1913-14), which he called ‘a joke about the meter’ – the originally French standard of measurement – is a wooden box 11 that house three threads each 100 cm in length, glued to three painted canvas strips, each mounted on a glass panel, and three wood slats , shaped along one edge to match the curves of the threads.

Images from top
Hans-Peter Feldmann
Handprint from Charlotte Wolff (Marcel Duchamp)
Courtesy Hans-Peter Feldmann et galerie Martine Aboucaya

Marcel Duchamp
La mariée mise à nu par ses célibataires, même [Boîte Verte], 1934
Courtesy Association Marcel Duchamp

Marcel Duchamp
Prière de Toucher, 1947
Courtesy Galerie Ronny Van de Velde, Anvers

Elias Crespin
Circunconcentricos Inoxidable, 2012
Acier inoxydable, nylon, moteurs, ordinateur, interface électronique 100 cm Ø
©Elias Crespin. Photo Pascal Maillard

Ann Veronica Janssens
IPE 535, 2009
©P Lemmens. Courtesy Galerie M.Szwajcer


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

The publishers of The Blog 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 which may, under any circumstances, fall due, must be borne by the source supplier

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Architography

Friday, January 28th, 2011

Filip Dujardin

Despite a friend’s reassurances, I remained dubious when I received the link he sent me to the I Love Belgium blog. Forming part of the site’s logo, the black ink-blot thing, which I think is supposed to represent the very unmemorable shape of the country and is yet another reference to Milton Glaser’s iconic INY, seemed to me to say it all. However, the post of 27th June 2010 that my friend had suggested I look at, called Filip Dujardin – Fictions, is really great. His surname sounds fictitious but Dujardin is a talented architecture photographer who creates compelling, bizarre but somehow totally believable photomontaged images – the original photography and the subsequent retouching are beautifully done –  of contemporary buildings, domestic and commercial.

Filip, I discovered, also likes to shoot sheds. These images, on his own site, remind me somewhat of the austere work of the German, heavyweight photographer/artists Bernd and Hilda Becher, who produce deadpan ‘portraits’ in the form of extensive series of among other seemingly banal subjects: workers’ houses, gasometers and water towers, almost exclusively in black and white. They and Dujardin would appear to share the same sort of bleak, mainland North European tradition. The latter’s images are in colour but deadpan, too, however, whereas the Bechers are deadly serious, his are more artful than fine art; one knows instinctively that Dujardin walks around with his tongue stuck very firmly in his cheek.

What do you think of Fiilp Dujardin’s work? Please post a comment

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