Global contemporary art events and news observed from New York City. Suggestion? Email us.


New York – Julian Schnabel: “Flag Painting” at Karma, through April 26th 2014

April 23rd, 2014

Julian Schnabel, Flag Paintings, via Art Observed
Julian Schnabel, Flag Paintings, via Art Observed

Currently on view at Karma on Great Jones Street in New York is an exhibition of new work by American artist and filmmaker Julian Schnabel, featuring spray and ink painted flags Schnabel found and has used as a canvas, changing the meaning of the symbols and questioning nationalistic, religious, and cultural definitions.

Julian Schnabel, Flag Paintings (Installation View), via Art Observed
Julian Schnabel, Flag Paintings (Installation View), via Art Observed

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New York Times Examines History and Fate of Repatriated Artworks

April 22nd, 2014

The Goddess Morgantina, returned to Sicily from the J. Paul Getty Museum, via NYTThe New York Times looks at the results of returning treasured art works to their countries of origin, and examines the varying levels of prominence or neglect these works often reach once returned.  “It’s not the same with music, it’s not the same with film, it’s not the same with literature — but when it comes to physical objects,” says J. Paul Getty Trust President James B. Cuno, ”these things are kept as evidence of a proud past, as defined by the nation-state government.” Read More »

Daniel Loeb Urges Sotheby’s Shareholders to Support Him in Newest Open Letter

April 22nd, 2014

Daniel Loeb, via CNBCAnother letter from Third Point’s Daniel Loeb attacks Sotheby’s for failing to acknowledge the strength of his choices for board seats at the auction house.  ”We are convinced that having an owner’s perspective in the boardroom yields better results, that this board is in dire need of fresh insights, and that our candidates are more qualified than the company’s emissaries we are seeking to replace,” Loeb writes. Read More »

The Curatorial Challenges of Sigmar Polke’s Potato-Based Works

April 22nd, 2014

Potato house, Sigmar Polke at MoMA, via ArtNewsThe current Sigmar Polke retrospective at MoMA has posed interesting challenges to curators, namely how to maintain the artist’s Potato House (Kartoffelhaus) and Potato Drawing (Kartoffelzeichnung), which both incorporate real potatoes as a symbol of post-war Germany, and which are also subject to the tubers’ potential to decay.  “The potatoes are allowed to sprout,” says MoMA curatorial assistant Magnus Schaefer, but “if they’re beginning to rot, we have to replace them.”  Read More »

New York – Carter: “Beside Myself” at Lisa Cooley Through March 26th, 2014

April 22nd, 2014

Carter, Beside Myself (Installation View), via Art Observed
Carter, Beside Myself (Installation View), via Art Observed

Currently on view at Lisa Cooley’s Lower East Side exhibition space is a body of new work by Carter, including paintings, drawings, photography, sculpture and film from the artist’s wide-ranging and impressive output.  Continuing his exploration of varying identities and their interconnected relationships to the art object, the show continues Carter’s ongoing interest with presence throughout.

Carter, Fully Present (2013-2014), via Lisa Cooley
Carter, Fully Present (2013-2014), via Lisa Cooley Read More »

New York – Pieter Vermeersch at Team Through April 27th, 2014

April 22nd, 2014

Pieter Vermeersch, Untitled (2013), all images courtesy Team Gallery, Inc.
Pieter Vermeersch, Untitled (2013), all images courtesy Team Gallery, Inc.

Currently on view at Team Gallery in Lower Manhattan is a solo show from Belgian artist Pieter Vermeersch, composed of large paintings on canvas and wall murals, for which he has employed techniques of grid painting and color mapping, reminiscent of Gerhard Richter and Robert Bechtle. The exhibition will continue through April 27, 2014.

Pieter Vermeersch (Installation View)
Pieter Vermeersch (Installation View)

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New York Times Applies Thomas Piketty’s Economic Theories to Art Market

April 21st, 2014

Drawings for a small room by Wade Guyton, via New York TimesThe New York Times addresses the publication of Thomas Piketty’s critically-lauded book on capital accumulation and income inequality this week, questioning how the work, Capital in the Twenty-First Century, can be applied to the art world, where the vast increase in high-figure spending has priced many interested parties out from buying works  “The art market has become an excuse for banking in public,” says dealer Ivor Braka. ”People are displaying wealth in the most ostentatious way possible. It’s luxury goods shopping gone wild.” Read More »

Jose Carlos Bergantinos Diaz, Suspected Knoedler Gallery Defrauder, Arrested in Spain

April 21st, 2014

Jose Carlos Bergantiños Diaz, via NY TimesJose Carlos Bergantinos Diaz, the suspected accomplice in the fraudulent art sales made through Knoedler Gallery, has been apprehended in Southern Spain, the Wall Street Journal reports.  Bergantino is expected to appear before a judge this week, who will decide on a potential extradition to the U.S. Read More »

MoMA Director Glenn Lowry Interviewed in NYT

April 21st, 2014

Glenn Lowry Examines a Lygia Clark, via NYTThe New York Times speaks with MoMA Director Glenn Lowry this week, evaluating his occasionally disputed decisions at the head of the museum, and the vast increases in attendance that he has seen during his time as museum head.  “Obviously I’m deeply empathetic to the feelings that that has elicited from a community we really care about,” Lowry says. “On the other hand, sometimes you have to make really tough decisions if you think they’re right.”  Read More »

New York – Ross Bleckner at Mary Boone Through April 26th, 2014

April 21st, 2014

Ross Bleckner, via Art Observed
Ross Bleckner, via Art Observed

Painter Ross Bleckner has returned to New York this spring, with an exhibition of new paintings at Mary Boone Gallery, featuring several continuations of past series of works, while branching off in new directions.  It’s been some time since the last solo exhibition of works by Ross Bleckner in New York, nearly four years to be exact, and the artist seems to have been biding his time, putting together a strong selection of works.

Ross Bleckner, ALP30 (2013), via Mary Boone
Ross Bleckner, ALP30 (2013), via Mary Boone Read More »

Hong Kong – Giacometti: “Without End” at Gagosian Hong Kong, through April 21st 2014

April 20th, 2014

Alberto Giacometti, Crowd at Intersection (1965), all images courtesy Gagosian Hong Kong
Alberto Giacometti, Crowd at Intersection (1965), all images courtesy Gagosian Hong Kong

Gagosian’s Hong Kong gallery space is currently showing the complete suite of lithographs from Alberto Giacometti’s Paris sans fin (Paris without end) series, alongside sculptures, paintings, drawings, photographs, and archival material from the late years of the artist’s life.

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AO On-Site: The Brooklyn Museum Gala, Wednesday, April 16th, 2014

April 19th, 2014

Kehinde Wiley, via Art Observed
Kehinde Wiley, via Art Observed

On Wednesday night, the Brooklyn Museum opened the doors for its annual Gala, bringing together a diverse group of artists, collectors and trustees to honor painter Kehinde Wiley, artist Jenny Holzer, and developer Jane Walentas.

Orly Genger, via Art Observed
Orly Genger, via Art Observed

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MoMA to Stage First U.S. Museum Retrospective for Robert Gober

April 19th, 2014

Robert Gober, Untitled Leg, via NYTThe Museum of Modern Art has announced that it will host the first-ever U.S. museum retrospective of works by Robert Gober.  Titled The Heart Is Not a Metaphor, Mr. Gober’s work will be on view beginning in October.  “Robert is totally involved and approaching himself as if he were one of his subjects,” says Ann Temkin, chief curator of painting and sculpture. Read More »

Pharrell Williams to Curate Show at Perrotin Gallery

April 19th, 2014

Pharrell Williams by Takashi Murakami, via Art NewspaperArtist Pharrell Williams is continuing his ventures into the art world later this year, curating a show at Emmanuel Perrotin’s Paris space.  The show, titled G I R L after the artist’s hit album, will feature 40 works by 32 artists (half of them women), including Tracey Emin, Alex Katz and Bharti Kher, as well as Daniel Arsham and Gregor Hildebrandt.  The works selected mix images of women and of love, viewed from a variety of angles,” the artist’s team said in a press statement. Read More »

New York – Erwin Wurm: “Synthesa” at Lehmann Maupin Through April 19th, 2014

April 19th, 2014

Erwin Wurm, Kiss (Abstract Sculptures) (2013), via Art Observed
Erwin Wurm, Kiss (Abstract Sculptures) (2013), via Art Observed

Taking up the main room of Lehmann Maupin’s considerable Chelsea gallery, Austrian artist Erwin Wurm is presenting a series of recent sculptural works, continuing the artist’s irreverent and bizarre abstractions of both contemporary materials and the human form.  Short but sweet, Wurm’s show takes on his past approaches to figurative sculpture, and recasts it in an increasingly abstract, yet surprisingly cohesive series of sculptures, using the full body of his work to create new pieces that combine his aesthetic endeavors into more nuanced wholes.

Erwin Wurm, Synthesa (Installation View), via Art Observed
Erwin Wurm, Synthesa (Installation View), via Art Observed Read More »

Antonio Banderas to Play Picasso in Upcoming Biopic

April 18th, 2014

Antonio Banderas, via ComplexActor Antonio Banderas has been chosen to portray Pablo Picasso in an upcoming film by Carlos Saura.  Banderas will act alongside Gwyneth Paltrow, who will play the artist’s longtime muse, Dora Maar.  ”I turned down the chance at one point of playing Mr. Pablo, but the time has come in my life where I understand him better,” says Banderas. “I am nearly at the age he was when those events happened, in 1937, when he was 55 or 56, and I’m getting close.” Read More »

Joan Jonas to Represent USA at Venice Biennale Next Year

April 18th, 2014

Joan Jonas, Mirage, via NYTArtist Joan Jonas will represent the United States at the Venice Biennale next year, the New York Times reports.  The pioneering video and performance artist was selected by the State Department’s bureau of educational and cultural affairs, and will create a site-specific work at the U.S. pavilion.   “Joan has been a visionary for such a long time,’’ says Paul C. Ha, the director of the M.I.T. List Visual Arts Center, and commissioner of the exhibition. “Yet she hasn’t had much exposure in Venice.’’ Read More »

Tauba Auerbach Interviewed in Evening Standard

April 18th, 2014

Tauba Auerbach, via Evening StandardTauba Auerbach is interviewed in the Evening Standard this week, following the opening of her first solo exhibition in London at the ICA.  “I don’t think beauty and complexity are at odds,” she says.  “I feel that I’m more compelled to spend time with objects that I find seductive. I want to examine them and understand them.” Read More »

Jake and Dinos Chapman to Install Dinosaur Sculptures at London’s Hamstead Heath

April 18th, 2014

Chapman Brothers Dinosaur Sculptures, via Ham and HighA trio of sculptures by Jake and Dinos Chapman are set to be installed at Hampstead Heath in London.  The rudimentary sculptures of a group of dinosaurs, titled The good the bad and the ugly, were previously installed at the Gherkin building.  Installed next month, they will constitute the largest piece of public art the park has seen since 2005, when Giancario Neri’s The Writer was placed on view.   Read More »

BP Portrait Award Shortlist Announced

April 18th, 2014

Thomas Ganter, Man with a Plaid Blanket, via The GuardianThe shortlist for the BP Portrait Award has been announced, featuring works by Thomas Ganter, Richard Twose, and David Jon Kassman.  The nominees will be on view at London’s National Portrait Gallery from  June 26th to September 21st, with the winner announced just before the exhibition opens on June 24th. Read More »

Artist Alan Davie Passes Away at 93

April 18th, 2014

Alan Davie, Red Moon (2014), via NYTScottish-born painter Alan Davie passed away last week at the age of 93.  Davie’s expressionistic, abstract canvases earned him considerable attention during the late 1950′s and early 1960′s, and was considered as a major influence on the work of David Hockney.  The artist’s work is currently the subject of a major retrospective at the Tate Britain.  “It’s an urge, an intensity, a kind of sexual need,” Mr. Davie said recently in an interview with The Telegraph. “I don’t practice painting or drawing as an art, in the sense of artifice, of making an imitation of something. It’s something I do from an inner compulsion, that has to come out.” Read More »

New York – Ali Banisadr: “Motherboard” at Sperone Westwater, through April 19th 2014

April 18th, 2014

Ali Banisadr, Ran (2014), all images courtesy Sperone Westwater
Ali Banisadr, Ran (2014), all images courtesy Sperone Westwater

Currently on view at Sperone Westwater in New York is an exhibition of new works by Iranian painter Ali Banisadr.  Entitled Motherboard, the exhibition is Banisadr’s first solo show at at the gallery, and will remain on view through April 19, 2014.

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Don’t Miss – New York: Michel Majerus at Matthew Marks Gallery Through April 19th

April 17th, 2014

Michael Majerus, your bad taste (2002), via Matthew Marks
Michael Majerus, your bad taste (2002), via Matthew Marks

Spread over Matthew Marks Gallery’s spaces on 502, 522 and West 22nd Street is an exhibition of works by late Berlin-based artist Michael Majerus.  Presenting over twenty-five paintings and multimedia installations, the show is the most comprehensive of Majerus’s work in the United States as well as the first staged in the country since his life was cut short at the age of 35 by a plane crash in 2002.

Michael Majerus, pornography needs you (2001), via Matthew Marks
Michael Majerus, pornography needs you (2001), via Matthew Marks

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New York – Jordan Wolfson at David Zwirner Through April 19th, 2014

April 16th, 2014

Jordan Wolfson, (Female Figure) (2014), via Art Observed
Jordan Wolfson, (Female Figure) (2014), via Art Observed

How does memory function in the 21st century?  How does nostalgia?  These are questions bound up in the work of Jordan Wolfson, on view now at David Zwirner.  Spread along a series of assemblages, video, and the artist’s notoriously eerie animatronic robot, the show is a striking step for the artist, showing his unique approach to art-making in an ever-stronger expressive capacity.

Jordan Wolfson, Raspberry Poseur (2012), via David Zwirner
Jordan Wolfson, Raspberry Poseur (2012), via David Zwirner Read More »