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New Report Finds Little Improvement in Abu Dhabi Museum Construction Projects

August 3rd, 2015

A Gulf Labor Protest Poster in Venice, via Art NewspaperPoor working conditions and substandard pay persist at Abu Dhabi construction sites for the Louvre and Guggenheim, despite ongoing protests and investigations, the Art Newspaper reports.  The news comes from a new report by Gulf Labor, noting few improvements in the past year.        Read More »

Thelma Golden Appointed to Board of Directors for Barack Obama Foundation

August 3rd, 2015

Thelma Golden, via Art NewsStudio Museum head Thelma Golden has been appointed to the board of directors for the the Barack Obama Foundation in Chicago this week.  “I am very much looking forward to joining the Board of Directors, and working to make the Obama Presidential Center a hub for creative expression through the arts,” Golden said in a statement. “The South Side of Chicago has historically been the nexus of several important cultural movements for African-Americans, and I believe the new Center will help usher in a new era of community engagement for this extraordinary neighborhood.” Read More »

German Analyst Magnus Resch Offers New Perspectives on the Primary Market

August 3rd, 2015

Magnus Resch, via BloombergAn article in Bloomberg this week notes the increasingly difficult challenges of turning a profit for smaller and less commercially-focused galleries, despite a booming art market, and points to writer/art adviser Magnus Resch’s book Management of Art Galleries for potential solutions.  “I could have just said, ‘The revenue numbers are terrible,’ but rather than being so negative I’m actually offering solutions,” Resch says. “It’s based on the analysis that I did.” Read More »

UK Reverses Decision on Ai Weiwei Visa, Grants Full Six Month Stay

August 3rd, 2015

Ai Weiwei, via Financial TimesArtist Ai Weiwei has been granted his full 6-month visa by the UK Embassy, following an intervention by Home Secretary Theresa May.  “She has reviewed the case and has now instructed Home Office officials to issue a full six-month visa,” an embassy official said. “We have written to Mr Ai apologizing for the inconvenience caused.” Read More »

Anish Kapoor Invites Carsten Höller to Design Slide for ArcelorMittal Orbit

August 3rd, 2015

ArcelorMittal Orbit, via ArtlystThe ArcelorMittal Orbit, Anish Kapoor’s sculpture at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in London, will soon have its own Carsten Höller slide, after Kapoor invited the German artist to collaborate.  “I am thrilled that my tallest slide so far will cling onto Anish Kapoor’s The Orbit, taking an existing artwork as its site,” Höller says. “A slide is a sculptural work with a pragmatic aspect; a device for experiencing an emotional state that is a unique condition somewhere between delight and madness.” Read More »

FT Takes a Look Inside Corporate Art Collections

August 3rd, 2015

Jean-Michel Basquiat, The Field Next to the Other Road (1981), via Christie'sThe Financial Times notes the benefits of major corporations and financial institutions from collecting art, including benefits to the galleries and artists selling work.  “The important thing is that companies run a collection professionally,” says Loa Haagen Pictet, who chairs the International Association of Corporate Collections of Contemporary Art.  “They manage it, show it, and have a proper database inventory and conduct activities directed at the public.” Read More »

James Cohan Gallery Opens New Location in Lower East Side

July 31st, 2015

james_cohan_gallery04In addition to its Chelsea flagship and a satellite in Shanghai, James Cohan Gallery is opening its third location in the Lower East Side at the ground floor space of 291 Grand Street. “After being in business for 16 years, our roster of artist continues to grow and we want the opportunity for them to exhibit sooner than later”, explained Mr.Cohan. Works of Scottish artist, Katie Paterson, will be the first exhibition at the new location in February, followed by the Propeller Group in spring.

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Chelsea Gallery Wallspace Closing

July 31st, 2015

Wallspace Gallery, via Art NewsWallspace, the Chelsea Gallery that launched the career of Walead Beshty and has shown artists including Mark Grotjahn, N. Dash and Jay Defeo, is closing on August 7th.  “It has been our immense privilege to nourish a roster of artists who have inspired us, challenged us and enriched our lives in immeasurable ways,” the gallery said in a statement.  “We are better people for knowing you and we thank you for working with us to make Wallspace the special place it has been.” Read More »

Paul Allen Launches Seattle Art Fair

July 30th, 2015

Paul Allen, via BloombergThe Seattle Art Fair, bankrolled by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen, opens today, with an impressive list of major blue-chip galleries in attendance.  “I’ve been going to the Venice Biennale for at least a decade and always enjoy the stimulation of seeing the work of new and up-and-coming artists,” says Allen. “In 2013 I started thinking, ‘what’s keeping us from doing this in Seattle?’” Read More »

Ai Weiwei’s Travel to Britain Limited by Embassy Restrictions

July 30th, 2015

Ai Weiwei, via NYTWhile Ai Weiwei’s passport has been returned to him, the artist has reportedly been limited in how long he can travel in Britain in the coming months.  While he had planned a six-month stay, the British Embassy had reduced his stay to only 20 days, citing an unreported conviction in Chinese court.  “The decision is a denial of Ai Weiwei’s rights as an ordinary citizen, and a stand to take the position of those who caused sufferings for human rights defenders,” the artist said in a statement on his Instagram. Read More »

Art in America and Art News Merging

July 30th, 2015

Peter Brant via peterbrant.com Photo by Patrick DemarchelierIn an unexpected turn, Art News and Art in America have announced a merger that sees Peter Brant taking controlling interest in the pair of companies.  “The idea is to make artnews.com the single domain for the company when it comes to any digital editorial content — news coverage or information,” says ArtNews CEO Izabela Depczyk. “That means content from Art in America will be housed on the website as well… all the archival content [from all magazines], back issues, subscriptions, anything and everything will be housed on artnews.com.” Read More »

Met Posts Highest Annual Attendance on Record

July 30th, 2015

China Through the Looking Glass, via NYTThe Metropolitan Museum of Art has recorded at least 6.3 million visitors in the past year, the most in the 40 it has been recording attendance statistics.  The figures are attributed to the museum’s new seven day operating hours and a number of popular exhibitions. Read More »

Artists in Oakland Protest Lawsuit Over Public

July 30th, 2015

Public Art in Oakland, via KQEDArtists in Oakland and the Bay Area at large are outraged after the Building Industry Association of the Bay Area filed a lawsuit against the city for requiring all new building projects to include plans for public art on the premises.  “Developers owe it to the city and residents to enrich the landscape and culture of the urban space,” says Emma Spertus, artist and founder of the Oakland studio building and residency program Real Time and Space. Read More »

Katherine Bernhardt Installs Mural at Venus Over LA

July 30th, 2015

Katherine Bernhardt, via Art InfoKatherine Bernhardt has completed a commissioned mural for Venus Over Los Angeles, covering the outside of the gallery in her signature cartoonish drawings of food and cigarettes.  The mural is on view through August 9th. Read More »

NYC pledges $10 Million to Spaceworks

July 30th, 2015

New York City, via Art NewspaperThe New York City government has pledged $10 million towards Spaceworks, a city-based non-profit aiming to convert public spaces into affordable studio space for artists and community art sites.  The sites will be located in The Bronx.  “It’s a borough that is clearly under-resourced in terms of creative space,” says executive director Paul Parkhill. He is also hiring a full-time community organiser based in the area “to make sure there is a grassroots conversation early on, so people know what is happening.” Read More »

Full Strike Called for London’s National Gallery Staff this August

July 30th, 2015

Protests outside National Gallery, via Art NewspaperFollowing a number of walkouts and week-long protests, the staff at London’s National Gallery has announced its first full strike this August.  “Our members in the National Gallery have been engaged in a heroic struggle to defend the functions of a national institution,” PCS General Secretary Mark Serwotka said in a statement. “They have taken 52 days strike action so far and are prepared to take more. Accordingly, we have served the employer with notice today of more sustained action in August.” Read More »

Icelandic Art Center Sues to Reopen Venice Mosque Installation

July 28th, 2015

Christoph Büchel's Mosque installation for the Icelandic Pavilion, via Art ObservedA Venice court will hear the lawsuit filed by The Icelandic Art Center (IAC) in Reykjavik over the closure of Christoph Büchel’s Icelandic Pavilion “mosque” in the Italian city over a perceived “security threat.”  The work was closed in May after remaining open for only two weeks. Read More »

Christie’s CEO Patricia Barbizet Profiled in FT

July 27th, 2015

Patricia Barbizet, via Financial TimesThe Financial Times profiles Patricia Barbizet, Christie’s newly minted chief executive, who moved from her early work with Renault through her longtime career working under François Pinault.  “My mother was an artist, my brothers and sisters are film and theatrical producers, my father was in cinema. I chose Renault — spot the odd one out,” she jokes. Read More »

Tate Modern Announces 2016 Exhibitions for Georgia O’Keefe and Robert Rauschenberg

July 27th, 2015

Georgia O'Keefe, via The GuardianThe Tate Modern has announced its schedule of exhibitions for 2016, including a major survey of the work of Georgia O’Keefe, as well as the first posthumous retrospective of the work of Robert Rauschenberg in the UK.  “There is next to no work by Georgia O’Keeffe anywhere in Europe,” says Achim Borchardt-Hume, the gallery’s director of exhibitions. “Unless you travel to the States and travel quite extensively across the States it is very difficult to form a coherent picture of her work.” Read More »

Fate of SC State University Museum Collection Caught in Middle of Financial Dispute

July 27th, 2015

The I.P. Stanback Museum and Planetarium, via Post and cOurierRepairs to a boiler system at the financially troubled South Carolina State University Museum has led to disputes over what will happen with its art collection, with some arguing that moving the works puts them at risk during the University’s currently dire financial straits.  “There’s a certain care that we need to provide to preserve the collections, not only for the university but for the state and the country,” says Museum director Ellen Zisholtz. “We are looking for ways to carry out the mandate without putting the collection at risk.” Read More »

Matthew Eck to Launch New Art Fair in Miami Beach this December

July 27th, 2015

X Contemporary, via XMatthew Eck, former co-director of the SELECT art fairs in Miami and New York, has announced a new fair project to premiere at Art Basel Miami Beach this December, X Contemporary.  “Art doesn’t happen in a vacuum, and X Contemporary aims to present this overlap through dynamic events and collaborations, and within a curated context that prominently features some of the most exciting new galleries and artists today,” the fair says in its press release. Read More »

Miami Building Project Featuring Works by James Turrell and Richard Serra Delayed Indefinitely

July 26th, 2015

The proposed building, via Miami HeraldHedge Fund Manager and Collector Bruce Berkowitz, of Fairholme Capital Management, has reportedly scrapped a proposal for a ten-story office building, which featured public exhibition of works by Richard Serra and James Turrell, in Miami, following fines and a reported lack of attention from City Hall.  “There are no ongoing discussions and the only thing I’ve heard from the city is that I’ve been fined $300,000 for the way we cleared and secured the lot.” Read More »

R.I.P. Ingrid Sichy, International Editor of Condé Nast and Writer, 63

July 26th, 2015

Ingrid Sichy, via NYTIngrid Sichy, International Editor of Condé Nast, former editor of Interview Magazine, and longtime contributor to Vanity Fair and The New Yorker, passed away late this week in New York City at the age of 63.  Sichy was a foundational chronicler of the New York avant-garde and modern fashion for nearly forty years, and was a fixture at openings and runway shows around the globe.  “She could write about anything, but what interested her most were art and fashion, and she traversed those two hothouses like a bemused empress,” says Vanity Fair editor Graydon Carter.  “She had a crisp mind and an almost uncanny focus when she sat down to write. She was a fun, conspiratorial gossip, but never with malice or envy — the working tools of so many gossips.” Read More »

More Engravings Disappear from French National Library

July 24th, 2015

The Richelieu-Louvois Library, via France National LibraryA theft of 43 engravings by 16th-century artists valued at about $4.4 million from the Richelieu-Louvois branch of the National Library of France has led to the arrest of a library employee.  This is the second time engravings have disappeared from the institution this year.

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Basel, Switzerland – Anicka Yi: “7,070,430K of Digital Spit” at Kunsthalle Basel Through August 16th, 2015

August 2nd, 2015

Anicka Yi, 7,070,430K of Digital Spit (Installation View), via Kunsthalle Basel
Anicka Yi, 7,070,430K of Digital Spit (Installation View), via Kunsthalle Basel

Following up on her widely praised commission at The Kitchen earlier this year, Anicka Yi is presenting a new body of work on view at the Kunsthalle Basel, under the title 7,070,430K of Digital Spit.  Continuing the artist’s interest in time-sensitive and formally unstable media, the exhibition includes a number of works in various states of destruction and decay, applied here to explore notions of forgetting and memory loss. Read More »

London – Thomas Hirschhorn: “In-Between” at South London Gallery Through September 13th, 2015

July 31st, 2015

Thomas Hirschhorn, In-Between (2015), Photo by Mark Blower Courtesy of South London Gallery
Thomas Hirschhorn, In-Between (2015), Photo by Mark Blower Courtesy of South London Gallery

Thomas Hirschhorn has returned to London for his first solo show in the British capital is some time, bringing a new, site-specific work that continues the artist’s interest in crisis, temporality and mediation as necessary components in the understanding and mitigation of trauma.  Borrowing from the aesthetic languages of installation and sculpture, the artist maps a fictitious moment of violence across the South London Gallery, bringing with it a state of suspended aftermath. Read More »

Water Mill, NY – Watermill Summer Benefit, July 25th, 2015

July 30th, 2015

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Watermill Center Summer Benefit and Auction, via Art Observed

The 22nd Edition of the Watermill Center’s Annual Summer Benefit took place this past weekend, honoring long-time Watermill supporter and philanthropist Inga Maren Otto. This year, the gala’s theme was “Circus of Stillness… power over wild beasts”. Hosted by Robert Wilson, it brought together works of art and performance from some 25 countries, with over one thousand attendees. The evening raised a total of over $1.9 million dollars towards Watermill Center’s Artist Residency Program, International Summer Program, and other educational events for its artists.

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London- Barbara Hepworth “Sculpture for a Modern World” at Tate Modern through October 25, 2015

July 30th, 2015

Pelagos 1946 by Dame Barbara Hepworth 1903-1975
Barbara Hepworth, Pelagos (1946). All Images courtesy Tate London

Now through October 25th, the Tate Modern in London is hosting an exhibition of Barbara Hepworth’s sculptural work. The Yorkshire-born artist is known for her elegant abstract forms, and is considered among the most important British modernist sculptors of her time.  Hepworth has continued to produce consistently throughout her lifetime, creating a wide array of structures and employing a variety of materials evocative of natural landscapes and relationships, two of her main points of inquiry.

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Los Angeles – Olaf Breuning at Michael Benevento Through July 30th, 2015

July 29th, 2015

Olaf Breuning, Life III (2015), via Michael Benevento
Olaf Breuning, Life III (2015), via Michael Benevento

Compiling a body of work from the past several years of the artist’s practice, Michael Benevento  in Los Angeles is offering a broad look at the recent practice of Olaf Breuning, exploring the artist’s interest in vastly differing modes of production, and the thematic interests that unify his work.

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New York – FAILE : “Savage / Sacred Young Minds” at Brooklyn Museum Through October 4th, 2015

July 26th, 2015

FAILE, FAILE Temple (detail) (2015) via Brooklyn Museum
FAILE, FAILE Temple (detail) (2015) via Brooklyn Museum

FAILE, a Brooklyn-based collaboration between artists Patrick McNeil and Patrick Miller, is currently presenting their exhibition Savage/Sacred Young Minds at the Brooklyn Museum, continuing the artists’ practice in obscuring the boundaries between fine art and street art through techniques of both traditional and rebellious creative processes within predominantly institutional settings. Read More »

New York – Lee Lozano: “Drawings and Paintings” at Hauser & Wirth through July 31th, 2015

July 25th, 2015

Lee Lonzano, "Slide", 1965 Oil on canvas, 3 parts, via Hauser & Wirth
Lee Lonzano, Slide (1965), all photos via Hauser & Wirth

Hauser & Wirth is currently presenting Drawings and Paintings, a historical survey of artist Lee Lozano at the gallery’s Chelsea space on 18th Street, featuring a selection of critically significant works from 1964 and 1965.  Lozano’s pieces, expressive in their energy and form, showcase depth in exploring issues relating to both gender and the body in general, with drawings and paintings suggesting intersections and geometric interplays using color, line, gradient, and variations of perspective. Read More »

New York – Niele Toroni at Marian Goodman and The Swiss Institute through September 6th, 2015

July 24th, 2015

Niele Toroni at Swiss Institute (Installation View), via The Swiss Institute.
Niele Toroni at Swiss Institute (Installation View), via The Swiss Institute

The work of Niele Toroni is currently the subject of a pair of shows this month, with exhibitions at the Swiss Institute through September 6 and at Marian Goodman Gallery through July 30.  The Swiss-born Toroni is known for his reductive, repetitive paintings, emphasizing a conceptual approach which he executes with impressive regularity.  According to some, the artist repeats his painting techniques to free his work from the formulaic politics of representation, and divorce art from authorship.  Toroni creates site-specific and serial paintings, placing brushstrokes at regular intervals with a 50cm paintbrush, 30cm apart on a variety of surfaces including canvas, newspaper, and fabric.  Toroni began employing this method during a 1967 performance in Paris. Read More »

Ai Weiwei Free to Travel After Return of Passport

July 23rd, 2015

Ai Weiwei with his Passport, via The Guardian
Ai Weiwei with his Passport, via The Guardian

Artist Ai Weiwei is free once again to travel outside of China, following the return of his passport, The Guardian reports. The return caps a four year ordeal for the artist following his arrest for alleged tax evasion in 2011.  Read More »

New York – Françoise Grossen at Blum & Poe Through August 14th, 2015

July 20th, 2015

 

Françoise Grossen, Five Rivers, 1974

Françoise Grossen, Five Rivers, 1974

Currently on view at Blum & Poe is the first survey of Swiss-born, New York-based artist Françoise Grossen, focusing on works the artist created between 1967 and 1991 using fiber, a material that has recently had something of a renaissance in contemporary practice.  The material, which served as a popular material during the experimental ventures of the late 1960’s art scene, saw Grossen, as well as her peers Eva Hesse, Sheila Hicks and Lenore Tawney utilizing the material in allegorical and often grandiose arrangements, culminating in 1969’s historically resonant MoMA exhibition Wall Hangings. Read More »

London – Michael Borremans: “Black Mould” at David Zwirner Through August 14th, 2015

July 19th, 2015

Michael Borremans, Black Mould / Pogo (2015), via Art Observed
Michael Borremans, Black Mould / Pogo (2015), via Art Observed

Belgian painter Michael Borremans has long mined the aesthetic moorings of antiquity for his work, creating meticulously labored paintings that owe much to 17th and 18th century painterly technique.  Originally trained as a photographer, Borremans’s craft is tempered by a notable scholarly, contextual awareness, frequently using his mooring in the present day to offer the occasional critique or inversion of his historical inspirations.  Such is the case with the artist’s most recent body of work at David Zwirner’s 24 Grafton Street gallery in London, a series of dark, occasionally disturbing pieces that use the painter’s signature style to amplify their surrealist aspects.

Michael Borremans, Black Mould : The Badger's Song (2015), via Art Observed
Michael Borremans, Black Mould / The Badger’s Song (2015), via Art Observed

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New York – “Marlborough Lights” at Marlborough Broome Street Through August 1st, 2015

July 18th, 2015

Franz West, Lamp, (2003)
Franz West, Lamp (2003), all photos by Osman Can Yerebakan for Art Observed

Marlborough Broome Street, the downtown, contemporary-focused outpost of Chelsea’s Marlborough Gallery, opened its doors for a summer group show titled Marlborough Lights this month. Curated by Leo Fitzpatrick, a newly appointed director at the gallery, the exhibition traces a loose interpretation of the lightbulb as a source of energy and an allegory for critical thinking, while exploring the potentialities for the lamp as a creative container for motives beyond mere furniture or utilitarian lighting.

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New York – Albert Oehlen: “Home and Garden” at The New Museum Through September 13th, 2015

July 17th, 2015

Albert Oehlen, Untitled (2005), via Art Observed
Albert Oehlen, Untitled (2005), via Art Observed

In terms of painterly invention, few can keep up with Albert Oehlen, the German artist whose relentless reinterpretation of the medium has made him one of the more intriguing, and often unpredictable, guardians of the form.  Moving effortlessly from visceral abstraction to coy installation work and back, few elements of visual culture have avoided his scope over the past 30 years.  This drive towards the investigation of the image, and its potentials in an increasingly mediated world, sits at the center of Oehlen’s New Museum retrospective this summer in New York, combining a carefully selected series of works that move from his early recognition during the 1980’s through to the present day. Read More »

New Windsor, NY – Lynda Benglis at Storm King Art Center Through November 8th, 2015

July 16th, 2015

Lynda Benglis, Bounty, Amber Waves, and Fruited Plane (2014) via Storm King Art Center
Lynda Benglis, Bounty, Amber Waves, and Fruited Plane (2014) via Storm King Art Center

As summer reaches its zenith in New York, countless outdoor exhibitions and special public projects have sprung up across the city and region, encouraging visitors to take a more intrepid stance towards the art world.  Continuing its annual series of special exhibitions, the Storm King Art Center in New Windsor, NY has invited New York artist Lynda Benglis to take full advantage of its sprawling Catskills property, bringing a number of her organically-inspired cast sculptures to investigate the picturesque environs upstate.  With 12 outdoor sculptures and an additional 15 on view inside the museum galleries, Benglis’s exhibition is a striking look at the artist’s aesthetic interests over the past 15 years, as she increasingly incorporated notions of public, urban space and natural phenomena into her dizzyingly complex sculptural assemblages. Read More »

New York – Summer Group Show at Marian Goodman Gallery Through July 31st, 2015

July 15th, 2015

InstallationView2_MarianGoodman
Summer Group Show (Installation View), via Marian Goodman

The group exhibition at Marian Goodman Gallery revives an excitement for the accomplishments of formal, conceptual and technical art practices during the mid to late 20th century, presenting a lively exhibition that groups together an overlapping group of six prolific artists: Sol LeWitt, Gerhard Richter, Fred Sandback, Anne Truitt, John McCracken and Lawrence Weiner, one is privy to the continuing reverberations of works that defined both minimalist and conceptual techniques in contemporary art practice, often passing from one school to the other while redefining notions of structure, method, dimensionality, and form.  Stoic in its midtown location, the exhibition presents an impressive collection of conceptual and minimalist classics, offering continuing pivots and critically advanced methodological expectations of non-referential visual forms.

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