Archive for September, 2010

AO News Summary: Serpentine Gallery Reportedly Wins Hyde Park Space Over Damien Hirst

Thursday, September 30th, 2010


Jean Nouvel’s 2010 Serpentine Pavilion. Image via Serpentine Gallery.

Earlier this week, Bloomberg News reported that an agreement has been reached in favor of Serpentine Gallery regarding its ongoing competition with Damien Hirst for the space formerly occupied by a munitions store, The Magazine, in Hyde Park, London. According to an “anonymous inside source,” award winning architect Zaha Hadid will oversee the transformation of the Kensington Gardens venue, which is currently being used as a kennel for stray dogs. Under the direction of Julia Peyton-Jones, the gallery will feature modern and contemporary artwork, and will be open to the public free of charge. An official public announcement of the decision is expected in the coming weeks.

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AO Auction Results: Christie’s sale of Artwork and Ephemera from Lehman Brothers fetches a further $2.6 million for the collapsed bank’s creditors in London, September 29th, 2010

Wednesday, September 29th, 2010


The Lehman Brothers corporate sign enters Christie’s, London. Image via the NY Times.

Two years after Lehman Brothers filed for bankruptcy, the art that once decorated its offices is continuing to be sold off as part of their effort to repay creditors. Today, “artwork and ephemera” which once hung in the defunct bank’s European headquarters fetched £1,631,238 ($2,573,685) in a mammoth 6-hour sale at Christie’s in London. Today’s auction follows the September 25th sale at Sotheby’s in New York that raised $12.3 million.

The auction attracted over 1,100 registered bidders from around the world, including a record 330 clients who registered to bid via the internet using Christie’s LIVE. Many former Lehman employees were present for the bidding, one former staffer told AFP before the sale “It’s a memory I want. It was a sad end to it all but I had a lot of good times there, it was where I started off my career.”


Atomists – Jump over, Gabriel Orozco. Estimate: £60,000 to £80,000. Price Realized: £99,560 ($157,305)

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AO News Summary: Jorge Pardo wins $500,000 MacArthur ‘Genius’ Grant

Wednesday, September 29th, 2010


Jorge Pardo, a recipient of the 2010 MacArthur Foundation Fellowship, at home in Los Angeles in 2007. Image courtesy of the New York Times.

On Monday, September 27, the honorees were announced for the 2010 MacArthur Fellowship, nicknamed the “Genius Grant.” Among the recipients of this prestigious awatrd is Cuban-born installation artist Jorge Pardo. The grant provides each honoree $500,000, divided evenly over five years. It is given to individuals who “show exceptional merit and promise for continued and enhanced creative work.” Pardo, who lives and works in Los Angeles, is perhaps best known for his redesigned spaces, which eliminate boundaries between architecture, fine art and design.


Jorge Pardo’s “Penelope” in Liverpool’s Wolstenholme Square. Image courtesy of Art Info.

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AO Guest Editorial/Review by Patrick Meagher of The Silvershed – New York: Dan Colen ‘Poetry’ at Gagosian Gallery, September 10 through October 16, 2010

Monday, September 27th, 2010


Poetry, Dan Colen (2010) via Gagosian

Dan Colen gets past his own (painterly graffiti) writer’s block of a sculptural brick wall (akin to his old urban-artifact based work) and progresses with new strides into the hallowed halls of Gagosian, replete with Gagosian scale, funding, and grandiosity. The gum and grit gestalt gestures are still there but the subject matter has taken a new turn. Namely, Abstraction, and abstraction as abstraction, or “Poetry,” if you will.

The abstract painting at the end of the gallery’s western wall, speaks of a new turn from the artist’s earlier more prosaic if suburbanistic urban-fetish ‘artifactualizations.’ The fashionable bad-boy has entered the brand-building (edifice on 24th street) and even brings with him a painterly painting from the wrong side of the tracks, river, and art history.

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AO News Summary – Madrid: Breugel’s 41st painting, one of his largest, discovered at Prado Museum

Sunday, September 26th, 2010


The Wine of Saint Martin’s Day
, a Bruegel painting recently discovered by the Prado Museum. Image courtesy of the New York Times.

The Museo Nacional del Prado in Madrid, Spain has discovered a painting by sixteenth-century Flemish master Pieter Bruegel the Elder. The painting, The Wine of Saint Martin’s Day, is dated between 1565 and 1568. Belonging to private collectors, the painting was brought to the Prado to have it studied and cleaned before the owners planned its sale. During the restoration, scholars of Flemish painting were invited to share their expertise. After an x-ray on the 4.8 x 8.9 foot canvas revealed the artist’s signature, its authorship was confirmed. The painting had previously been attributed to Bruegel’s less illustrious son.


Bruegel’s signature on the back of the canvas. Image courtesy of the AFP.

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AO AUCTION RESULTS: Sotheby’s sale of works from The Neuberger Berman and Lehman Brothers Corporate Art Collections raises $12.3 million in New York, September 25th, 2010

Saturday, September 25th, 2010


Untitled 1, Julie Mehretu. Estimated: $600,000—800,000. Price Realized: 1,022,500.

118 artworks that once hung in the corporate offices of Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. sold to bidders at Sotheby’s auction house in New York today for $12.3 million, exceeding the high-end estimate of $12 million. The sale comes almost exactly two years after the investment bank filed the largest bankruptcy in the history of the United States and its proceeds will be used to pay off the $613 billion owed to creditors. Today, Kimberly Macleod, spokesperson for Lehman Brothers commented: “We are delighted that Sotheby’s delivered the value we sought on behalf of the creditors and that the result was at the top of the pre-sale estimate.”

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AO News Summary: Antony Gormley’s Latest Sculpture Unveiled in Lelystad, the Netherlands

Saturday, September 25th, 2010


Exposure (2010) by Antony Gormley, via Artdaily

One of Antony Gormley‘s most intricate sculptures to date, a massive, squatting human figure, now stands 25 meters high near the Dutch city of Lelystad. The work, entitled Exposure, is five meters higher than Gormley’s most famous sculpture, Angel of the North, and weighs approximately 60 tons. The figure is composed of 5,000 hand-cut metal rods, each of a different length, and fastened with 14,000 bolts. The artist spent more than five years planning and creating the gargantuan structure, which would stand 100 meters tall if fully-erect.


Exposure (2010) by Antony Gormley, via TheGuardian

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Don’t Miss – New York: James Franco’s ‘The Dangerous Book Four Boys’ at Clocktower Gallery

Friday, September 24th, 2010


Rocket by James Franco. All images by Olivia Loving for Art Observed.

Currently on view at the Clocktower Gallery in New York is an exhibition by actor and aspiring visual artist James Franco. The show’s title, The Dangerous Book Four Boys, is a spin-off of the name of a recently released how-to book for boys.  Like the book, the exhibit revolves around the self-awareness and confusion that accompany adolescence.


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Go See – Paris: Dash Snow, Harmony Korine and Ryan McGinley at galerie du jour through November 6, 2010

Thursday, September 23rd, 2010


Dash Snow, Untitled (Metallic Trees) – God Spoiled, 2007. All images via galerie du jour unless otherwise noted.

Currently on view at galerie du jour is an exhibition entitled “3 + 1.” The 3 in this case refers to the New York trio of Dash Snow, Ryan McGinley and Harmony Korine, while 1 refers to the Parisian fashion designer agnès b. (née Angès Andrée Marguerite Toublé, 1941).  The show will remain at agnès b.’s galerie du jour, which specializes in contemporary photography, through November 6, 2010.  In the exhibit’s press release, agnès b. explains that her goal was not to pay homage to the late Snow, but rather to commemorate his life through a presentation of his work, a year after his death, in the company of his friends and peers.


Ryan McGinley, Chelsea, 2010

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AO On Site – New York (with video): Rob Pruitt 'Pattern and Degradation' at Gavin Brown's Enterprise and Maccarone through October 23, 2010

Wednesday, September 22nd, 2010


Rob Pruitt, Exquisite Self-Portrait: Father Martian, 2010. Images via the New York Times unless otherwise noted.

Rob Pruitt, the artist behind “Artworks for Teenage Boys” and “Artworks for Teenage Girls,” both paeans to and explorations of perceptions of adolescence, springboards off a particular microcosm of teenagerhood, the Amish rumspringa, in his current exhibition, “Pattern and Degradation.” This show, which opened September 11th at Gavin Brown’s Enterprise and Maccarone, represents an ongoing rumspringa for the artist himself. In the Amish tradition, teens are given the chance to take temporary leave of their traditional, restrictive culture in order to indulge in the excesses of mainstream American youth, and then are allowed to decide if they wish to return to the community or stay in the outside world.

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AO News Summary: Christie’s International Announces New Chairman and CEO

Tuesday, September 21st, 2010


Edward Dolman, Chairman, Christie’s International, PLC. All images via Christie’s.

Christie’s International announced yesterday that Edward Dolman has been promoted to Chairman at the U.K.-based auction house. Since 1999, Dolman has served as the firm’s CEO, where he “Shaped new operations, technology, and business strategy to seize trends in the market which include a shift to modernism and a rapidly expanding global client base.” He has been with the company for 26 years, joining as a specialist in the European Furniture Department in 1984. Since that time he has ascended through the ranks first as a department head, then as Managing Director of Christie’s Europe, Americas, and Amsterdam headquarters.

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Go See – New York: Louise Bourgeois and Tracey Emin “Do Not Abandon Me” at Carolina Nitsch through November 13, 2010

Tuesday, September 21st, 2010


Louise Bourgeois and Tracey Emin, Deep inside my heart, 2009-2010. All images courtesy of Carolina Nitsch Projects.

During the last two years of her life, feminist sculptor Louise Bourgeois (1911-2010) collaborated with the self-revealing YBA artist Tracey Emin on a series of prints entitled DO NOT ABANDON ME, published in an edition of 18 by Carolina Nitsch. Emin spoke of her friendship with the 98 year old artist in an interview with Kisa Lala in early 2010, stating: “I asked if I could meet her, and she said yes. Now we’re doing a collaboration. Louise makes watercolor prints and I do drawings over the top.” The prints use a new technique that transfers the dye from Bourgeois’ original gouache drawings onto fabric, to which Emin added text and drawings in black ink.


Artists Bourgeois and Emin, 2010, by Brigitte Cornand.

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AO News Summary: Corot painting disappears, is found, more details emerge

Monday, September 20th, 2010


Jean-Baptise-Camille Corot, Portrait of a Girl, 1857-8, which went missing on June 29, 2010 and was recovered weeks later. Image courtesy of the New York Times.

What began as a summer comedy of errors – an Upper East Side doorman finds a Corot painting missing on a courier’s drunken bender – took a strange turn earlier this month when the painting’s owner realized its co-owner may have been involved in its disappearance.  The following is a summary of the news and events that have unfolded over the past few weeks in the case.

The story begins like this: on July 29th a doorman at 995 Fifth Avenue, near 81st Street, discovered a painting in the bushes in front of the building. The nineteenth-century painting, “Portrait of a Girl” by Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot, whose estimated value is $1.4 million, was apparently lost hours earlier by an intoxicated courier, James Carl Haggerty. Thinking the artwork belonged to one of the building’s residents, doorman Franklin Puentes stored it inside his locker after unsuccessful attempts to locate its owner. Puentes then went on a three-week vacation. When he returned, he heard the buzz about the missing painting and promptly turned it over to the police.

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Go See – Rome: Franz West ‘Roman Room’ at Gagosian Gallery through October 30th, 2010

Monday, September 20th, 2010


Echolalia (2010) by Franz West, via Gagosian Gallery

I see my works as quite compatible with a l’art pour l’art philosophy. One may think that I try to take the art object out into the world since my works sometimes appear to have a practical function, but really it’s the other way around: things in the world can, under certain special circumstances, enter the realm of art.

-Franz West

Currently on view at Gagosian Gallery in Rome is Franz West’s “Roman Room,” an exhibition of new sculpture by the Austrian-born artist. In this body of work, West transforms basic shapes into irregular, large-scale structures. He incorporates visual elements derived from performance art, as well as classical art and sculpture.

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AO Onsite – New York: Interview with gallery owners Joel Mesler and Carol Cohen at the grand opening of UNTITLED, September 12th, 2010

Sunday, September 19th, 2010


UNTITLED Gallery opening, 30 Orchard Street, September 12th, 2010. All images by David Al-Ibrahim for Art Observed unless otherwise noted.

On the evening of September 12th, New York’s Lower East Side was bustling with gallery openings celebrating the onset of fall exhibition season. One of the most exciting events that night was at 30 Orchard Street, where Rental Gallery reopened its doors in a new location under the new name UNTITLED. Formerly located on the sixth floor of a building on East Broadway, UNTITLED’s sleek, recently-renovated pencil tower, designed by Andrew Ong, offers a fresh and more accessible ambiance.


Joel Mesler, gallery owner, with Rashid Johnson, exhibiting artist.

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Go See-Versailles: Takashi Murakami at the Château de Versailles through December 12th, 2010

Saturday, September 18th, 2010


Tongari- Kun
in the Salon de Hercule at the Chateau de Versailles, via Artinfo

Currently on view at the Château de Versailles are works by renowned Japanese Pop artist Takashi Murakami. The internationally celebrated contemporary artist exhibits 22 works throughout the Palace and the gardens, including 11 pieces created specifically for the exhibition. The show follows the international success of Jeff Koons, who exhibited at the Palace in 2008, and French Pop artist Xavier Veilhan, who created site-specific works at Versailles in 2009.


Kaikai & Kiki
in the Salon de Venus at the Chateau de Versailles, via Artinfo

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Go See – New York: Dan Flavin at Paula Cooper Gallery through October 30, 2010

Friday, September 17th, 2010


Dan Flavin, untitled (to Barry, Mike, Chuck and Leonard), 1972-1975. All images by Art Observed.

The current exhibition of early works by Dan Flavin at Paula Cooper Gallery offers a concise exploration into the artist’s experiments with the effect of colored light on architectural space. A 1960s minimalist, Flavin’s works realize the infinite possibilities inherent in the simple gesture of a florescent light in a gallery, which, despite a limited vocabulary, create varied optical and experiential situations. Flavin’s works confound the way that art is viewed by testing the limitations of opticality while stressing color as a medium in its own right. Instead of the viewer looking at a two dimensional object with painted colors, Flavin brings the color to the viewer, aggressively inserting his color combinations into the viewer’s eyes. That is, instead of the art reflecting color, it is emitting the color as light. If the purpose of art is to look, to see, to contemplate a visual object, then Flavin’s art frustrates this standard notion by making it difficult to look directly at the art object itself. This difficulty of viewing the art object directly causes the viewer to notice the effect of light and color on objects, thereby implicating the architectural space within the work. The works thereby occupy every part of the room, using the unusable spaces of a gallery–the corners and the floors, spaces incapable of displaying artworks.


Dan Flavin, untitled (to Barry, Mike, Chuck and Leonard), 1972-1975.

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Go See – Stockholm: “Thrice Upon A Time” at Magasin 3 Konsthall, through December 12, 2010

Thursday, September 16th, 2010


Gabriel Orozco, Black Kites Perspective (right), 1997, digital C-print, 41 x 51 cm. Courtesy of Marian Goodman.

Last weekend marked the opening of “Thrice Upon A Time” at Magasin 3 Konsthall in Stockholm, Sweden. The exhibition, which runs through December 12, 2010, is the institution’s most comprehensive to date. Curated by Richard Julin, Elisabeth Millqvist, and Tessa Praun, the exhibition draws on Magasin 3’s rich collection of works by established international and emerging contemporary artists. The ambitious show features over 200 pieces of photography, drawing, painting, film and sculpture. Just a week away from the Swedish elections, the opening was filled with political hopefuls and those in the know in Stockholm’s growing art scene.

On the role call are recognizable international names such as Uta BarthWalter De MariaGabriel OrozcoChris OfiliTal RGerhard RichterCindy ShermanFred Sandback, and Richard Tuttle. Many of the fresher faces are included in Moderna Museet’s fall show “The Moderna Exhibition 2010” opening October 2, 2010.


Sculptures by Danish artist Tal R, Hyacint, 2008, glazed ceramic, 107 x 28 x 34 and 105 x 36 x 49 cm. Photo by Christian Saltas.

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Go See – Brussels: James Turrell at Almine Rech Gallery through October 21, 2010

Wednesday, September 15th, 2010
James Turrell: A Retrospective James Turrell by Giménez, Trotman and Zajonc James Turrell: Geometry of Light
Click Here For James Turrell Books

 


James Turrell, Cherry, 1998. Image via Almine Rech Gallery.

Currently on view in Brussels at Almine Rech is the gallery’s first solo exhibition by American artist James Turrell (b. 1943). Since the 1960s, Turrell has created innovative and unconventional installations in which he attempts to sculpt optical perception and “the concrete nature of light,” generating meditative, often-sublime experiences for the viewer.  The works on display represent more than three decades of Turrell’s experimentation with light as a physical material, including examples of his early Projection series, his Apertures, and his more recent engagement with holography.


James Turrell, Acro Red, 1968. Image via Almine Rech.

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AO On Site Video – New York: Brazilian street art team Os Gêmeos and Futura2000’s Mural at P.S. 11 in Chelsea

Tuesday, September 14th, 2010

Art Observed was on site at Os Gêmeos and Futura2000’s eighty-foot mural, titled “The Giant Project,” at P.S. 11, William T. Harris elementary school in New York City’s Chelsea neighborhood. Os Gêmeos are twin brothers Otavio and Gustavo Pandolfo, a graffiti-art collaborative from São Paulo, Brazil.  Last summer the duo completed a large mural on Houston and Bowery on the wall that currently displays Barry McGee’s work, and Shepard Fairey’s before that.


Os Gêmeos, The Giant Project, 2010. All images by Art Observed

According to their website, “The project was organized by Allen Benedikt (from AKANYC and 12ozProphet.com) with support from the artists, AKANYC, Montana Colors, and the Nike World Basketball Festival.”

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Go See – Baden: Pipilotti Rist at Museum Langmatt through November 14, 2010

Monday, September 13th, 2010


Pipilotti Rist, Video Instillation, 2010, Langmatt Museum, Baden image courtesy of Museum Publicity.

To celebrate the Langmatt Museum’s 20th anniversary, “Close My Dress, Thank You,” by Pipilotti Rist, the prominent Swiss filmmaker and video artist, is currently on view. This exhibition is the fifth in the series “Summer Guest,” begun by the museum’s director Rudolf Velhagen in 2006. (Stay tuned for the On Site video of Rist’s opening at New York City’s Luhring Augustine Gallery, appearing on Art Observed later this week!)

Upon Karl Moser’s original construction, between 1900 and 1901, Villa Langmatt became the home of the Brown-Sulzer family, known in Germany for their impressive art collection. Villa Langmatt was first opened to the public as a museum in 1990 and today is Baden’s museum of Impressionism and Lifestyle, housing a notable French Impressionist painting collection of Renoir, Cezanne, and Monet. It also holds a large decorative arts collection, including East Asian and European ceramics and carpets in the museum’s former living quarters.

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Go See – Berlin: Yoko Ono "Das Gift" at Haunch of Venison through November 13th, 2010

Sunday, September 12th, 2010


Hole (detail) (2009), Yoko Ono, via Haunch of Venison

I’d like to draw awareness to all the violence that is happening all over the world.

-Yoko Ono

Currently on view at Haunch of Venison in Berlin is “Das Gift,” an exhibition by Japanese-American artist Yoko Ono. The show features sculpture, sound, film, and new interactive installations guided by instructions. The exhibition’s focal point is “Hole,” a pane of glass pierced by a bullet paired with written instructions to “Go to the other side of the glass and see through the hole.” Spectators then have the opportunity to experience the perspective of both the aggressor and the victim.

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Go See – Derbyshire, England: Sotheby's London Presents 5th Annual Selling Exhibition of Sculpture at Chatsworth House, September 13 through October 31, 2010

Saturday, September 11th, 2010


Manolo Valdés, Butterflies, via Sothebys.com

From September 13 to October 31, 2010, Sotheby’s London will exhibit 24 works of sculpture at Chatsworth House, Derbyshire. Each of the pieces is offered for sale in the auction house’s fifth Selling Exhibition of Modern and Contemporary Sculpture, titled Beyond Limits. Among the artists featured are Lynn Chadwick, Yue Minjun, Arnaldo Pomodoro, Damien Hirst, Marc Quinn, Subodh Gupta, Ju Ming, Eduardo Chillida, Germaine Richer and Barry Flanagan.

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Go See – London: Rachel Whiteread at Gagosian Gallery Davies Street through October 2nd, 2010

Friday, September 10th, 2010


Untitled (2010) by Rachel Whiteread, via Gagosian Gallery

Currently on view at Gagosian Gallery on Davies Street in London is an exhibition of drawings and new sculpture by Rachel Whiteread. The sculptural work is the latest in a series created for outdoor spaces, produced in soft materials such as plaster, rubber and resin. Five cubic forms of varying size, texture, and color are positioned in a straight line. A principle theme in Whiteread’s oeuvre, the new sculptures rely on form to reflect upon the surrounding negative space.

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