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

Smithsonian Spotlights Donation of Duchamp Works to Museum Holdings

December 6th, 2019

A piece in the Smithsonian this week looks at the recent trove of Marcel Duchamp works given to the Hirshhorn Museum.  “This is a real milestone in our museum’s history,” says museum director Melissa Chiu. “This is in fact the most important donation by individual collectors since our founding gift from Mr. Hirshhorn which founded our museum in 1974.”
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GQ Profiles Shared Territory of Art World and Balenciaga

December 6th, 2019

A piece in GQ this week looks at the outsize impact of Berlin’s art scene on the look and popularity of Balenciaga in the broader art world.  “There’s so much crossover that it feels like the art world and Balenciaga are a part of the same conversation,” says Carly Busta of New Models.
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Freelands Foundation Gives $132,000 to Hepworth Wakefield for Hannah Starkey Show

December 6th, 2019

The Freelands Foundation has awarded the Hepworth Wakefield as the fourth recipient of its $132,000 Freelands Award, which will support a major exhibition of photographer Hannah Starkey. “This project comes at an exciting moment when Starkey is reassessing her art in the light of recent political events, such as the MeToo movement, that have such a vital bearing on her new work,” says museum director Simon Wallis.
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Bloomberg Profiles the Challenges Around Selling Massive Works at Art Basel Miami Beach

December 6th, 2019

Bloomberg has a piece on the massive Portia Munson work on view at P.P.O.W.‘s Art Basel Miami Beach booth, and efforts to sell it during the fair.  “This is really why we do this, “ says collector Steve Wilson, who ultimately bought the work. “I love exposing the world to this kind of art, and helping living artists, and putting it all together.”
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Museums Closed in France Over Strikes

December 5th, 2019

A number of museums are closed in France this week as protests and strikes over President Macron’s retirement reforms continue nationwide.  Other museums are choosing to operate only partially, like the Grand Palais.  “Because of the circulation problems, a lot of people can’t come to work so we can only keep one exhibition open,” says a spokesperson.
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Yuz Museum and LACMA Remain Committed to Collaboration

December 5th, 2019

A piece in Art Newspaper spotlights the continued efforts of the Yuz Museum and LACMA to show Yuz founder Budi Tek’s collection of Chinese contemporary art in Shanghai despite a government crackdown on Islam.  “I do not consider that to be a problem at all,” Tek says. “It is never in my mind that whatever happens in Hong Kong will affect our program, or our [future] achievements.”
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Large-Scale Climate Protest Planned in Miami

December 5th, 2019

A large-scale march against climate change has been scheduled for Friday 6 December, outside the government centre in downtown Miami.  “We are reaching an irreversible tipping point, beyond which glacier ice melt will raise sea levels to catastrophic levels here in Miami, where more than 2.4m people live less than 4ft above the high-tide line,” says activist Will Charouhis adds. “Even the most conservative estimates show that some Floridians will soon be forced to move and will become some of our nation’s first climate refugees.”
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Freer/Sackler Rebrands as National Museum of Asian Art.

December 5th, 2019

The Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery are rebranding as the National Museum of Asian Art, a move museum officials say has nothing to do with recent public blowback against the Sackler family.  “It’s a shift toward a unified brand and not away from the gallery names,” Deputy Director Lori Duggan Gold said.


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Andrea Fraser Profiled in NYT

December 4th, 2019

Andrea Fraser gets the profile treatment in the NYT this week, as she looks at an art world that has adopted and implemented activist practices that seem to echo her pioneering work during the 1980s.  “I’m on three boards and two councils, so it feels like I’ve gone to seed or something,” she says. “But it’s sort of the part of the evolution of what I do and institutional critique — realizing that you also have to step up.”  
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New York’s Artadia to Expand Grant Program

December 4th, 2019

Starting in 2020, New York non-profit Artadia will significantly expand its grant-making programs, providing funds to artists based in New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Atlanta, and Houston. “Funds are fantastic, but it’s really about validation—being told that your work matters,” Carolyn Ramo, Artadia’s executive director says. “Our goal is to celebrate these artists in the cities they live and work and also create a national conversation around their practice.”
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REFERENCE LIBRARY

AO ON-SITE – MIAMI BEACH: UNTITLED ART FAIR, DECEMBER 4TH – 8TH, 2019

December 5th, 2019

Camille Kachani at Zipper Galeria, via Art Observed
Camille Kachani at Zipper Galeria, via Art Observed

Turning the corner onto the iconic drag of Ocean Drive, one’s attention is immediately drawn to the slender white tent laid out along the ocean skyline, a gleaming structure that houses the Untitled Art Fair underneath its minimalist structure.  Its annual home, placed squarely in the midst of boozey beachgoers, restaurant soundsystems, and the annual flood of Art Basel Miami Beach visitors, the fair has one of the more unique positions in a week full of unique offerings, one that balances some of the most familiar sights of the city with the impressive work on view inside.  Compounded by the floor to ceiling windows in the fair tent, the fair is an annual must-attend for those looking to get their dose of dynamic contemporary art and Florida sun in one go. Read More »

AO ON-SITE – MIAMI BEACH: ART BASEL MIAMI BEACH 2019 AT MIAMI BEACH CONVENTION CENTER, DECEMBER 4th – 8TH, 2019

December 4th, 2019

Jim Dine at Ben Brown, via Art Observed
Jim Dine at Ben Brown, via Art Observed

Closing its doors this evening, the week of sales at Art Basel Miami Beach has kicked off, capping off a strong week for galleries in South Florida, and a strong opportunity to close out the year with a flourish.  Commanding a roster of over 200 galleries from around the world, the marquee event of the fall market season in the U.S., and one of the biggest social events of the art world calendar has gotten underway, with thousands flocking to the sun and sand of the Florida metropolis. Read More »

AO Preview – Miami: Art Basel Miami Beach and Miami Art Week, December 3rd – 8th, 2019

December 1st, 2019

Elmgreen & Dragset, Before the Storm (2019), via Kukje
Elmgreen & Dragset, Before the Storm (2019), via Kukje

With the conclusion of another year, the art world has once again turned its attention to the bustling Miami cityscape for another year of of the Art Basel fair franchise on the tip of the Florida peninsula.  Bringing together the global art community for a week of fairs, exhibitions and parties on the streets of Miami and Miami Beach, the fair and its satellites will look to further its influence and footprint in the city. Read More »

New York – Anish Kapoor at Lisson Gallery Through December 20th, 2019

November 27th, 2019

Anish Kapoor, New Born (2019), via Lisson
Anish Kapoor, New Born (2019), via Lisson

Currently on at both of Lisson Gallery’s New York exhibition spaces, artist Anish Kapoor orchestrates a striking investigation of perception, space, time and movement through a selection of new works. This is Kapoor’s first show with Lisson in the U.S., an impressive note considering his nearly forty years with the gallery. Read More »

New York – Nathalie Djurberg & Hans Berg: “One Last Trip To The Underworld” at Tanya Bonakdar Through December 20th, 2019

November 25th, 2019

Nathalie Djurberg & Hans Berg, One Last Trip To The Underworld (Installlation View), via Tanya Bonakdar

Nathalie Djurberg & Hans Berg, One Last Trip To The Underworld (Installlation View), via Tanya Bonakdar

Marking their first exhibition in New York in over 5 years, the artist duo of Nathalie Djurberg and Hans Berg have touched down in New York City for an expansive solo exhibition at Tanya Bonakdar’s expansive Chelsea exhibition space. The show, which marks the world premiere of four new video works, continues the pair’s collaborative vision and surreal landscapes, which explore the shadows of human subconsciousness. Using sculpture, stop-motion film, sound, and immersive installation the artists construct narratives that speak to emotional tension, confliction, sexual impulse, and violence.

The show is rife with dark humor and absurdity. Large-scale flower sculptures dot the floors of the space, each accented with a range of grotesque details and bizarre creatures flitting across their surfaces in mid-pollination. Countered by immense, full-wall videos, these pieces seem to create the landscape against which this action on-screen plays out. The gallery becomes a playing field for the subconscious, hints of tension and violence, desire and sexual aggression, all writ large on the walls as these sculptures translate that same energy into three dimensional space.

Nathalie Djurberg & Hans Berg, One Last Trip To The Underworld (Installlation View), via Tanya Bonakdar
Nathalie Djurberg & Hans Berg, One Last Trip To The Underworld (Installlation View), via Tanya Bonakdar

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New York – Karen Kilimnik at 303 Gallery Through December 20th, 2019

November 22nd, 2019

Karen Kilimnik (Installation View), via 303
Karen Kilimnik (Installation View), via 303

Comprising her 12th solo show with 303 Gallery, artist Karen Kilimnik returns to New York with a new body of works, snaking through a range of materials and techniques that touch on painting, photography, collage, sculpture and video, all displayed in the Petersburger exhibition style.

Karen Kilimnik, the sports car rally + and the treasure hunt, england, Steed, Emma Peel, assorted villains + the butler - bentley (2007), via 303
Karen Kilimnik, the sports car rally + and the treasure hunt, england, Steed, Emma Peel, assorted villains + the butler – bentley (2007), via 303

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New York – Matthew Barney: “Embrasure” at Gladstone Gallery Through December 21st, 2019

November 20th, 2019

Matthew Barney, Embrasure (Installation View), via Gladstone Gallery
Matthew Barney, Embrasure (Installation View), via Gladstone Gallery

Artist Matthew Barney’s victory lap continues after the 2018 release of his latest film Redoubt, a wolf hunt in Idaho’s rugged Sawtooth Mountains that continues the artist’s ongoing preoccupation with landscape as both setting and subject. For his current show in New York, on view at Gladstone Gallery, the artist presents a set of new drawings, etchings, and sculpture that draw from the film, and expand on its allegorical and cosmological themes. Read More »

New York – Douglas Gordon at Eva Presenhuber Through December 15th, 2019

November 19th, 2019

Douglas Gordon, Happy Birthday to Me (2008-ongoing), via Eva Presenhuber
Douglas Gordon, Happy Birthday to Me (2008-ongoing), via Eva Presenhuber

Presenting a range of works continuing his interest in cinema and the collective memory, the construction of images on the screen and in our heads, artist Douglas Gordon returns to Eva Presenhuber in New York City with a selection of works centered around his ongoing installation Happy Birthday To Me…, accompanied by a new 24-part burned print work titled Self Portrait of You + Me (Neighborly Love), a film installation titled Video Diptych, and more, compiling the artist’s respective works into both a portrait of his own practice, and that of the concepts described above. Read More »

NEW YORK – “CONVERSATION PIECE: DESIGN IS DEAD” AT 109 THOMPSON THROUGH NOVEMBER 16TH, 2019

November 16th, 2019

Charlap Hyman & Herrero, Shell Lamp I, Moulded plastic, and Astrologia Zodiac Black Natural Abaca Round Rug, Hemp, 2018; Chiarastella Cattana, Dune, Jacquard woven textile, 2019; Yali, Vignole Table, Glass top, iron base, 2019. © Annie Schlecter.
Charlap Hyman & Herrero, Shell Lamp I, Moulded plastic, and Astrologia Zodiac Black Natural Abaca Round Rug, Hemp, 2018; Chiarastella Cattana, Dune, Jacquard woven textile, 2019; Yali, Vignole Table, Glass top, iron base, 2019. © Annie Schlecter.

Currently on view for the week at 109 Thompson Street is the pop-up exhibition ‘Conversation Piece: Design is Dead’, a shoebox of a gallery space that designer Adam Charlap Hyman has dramatically transformed into an underwater grotto. The eponymous title of the show is the frequent tagline of Enzo Mari, a maverick Italian designer highly critical of modern design with a host of catechisms to prove it. He attributes the solipsism of design—namely, its death—as ‘the overlaying of icons without any reference to history… In most cases the essence becomes a confusing mess, created without logic.’ Read More »

AO Auction Recap – New York: Post-War and Contemporary Evening Sales, November 13th – 14th, 2019

November 14th, 2019

Ed Ruscha, Hurting the Word Radio #2 (1964), via Christie's
Ed Ruscha, Hurting the Word Radio #2 (1964), final price: $52,485,000, via Christie’s

With the closing of sales last night in New York, the major auction houses have drawn the curtain on a busy year on the secondary market, capping a trio of strong outings for Post-War and Contemporary Art that have once again underscored the state of the art market currently.  A number  of guaranteed sales and high estimate prices seem to have eradicated much of the surprise at the higher end of the market, but its value-setting functions remain intact, as a number of records fell over the course of the past two evenings, and a group of artists made the jump from heritage prizes to certified blue-chip bets. Read More »