Archive for the 'AO On Site' Category

Copenhagen: Ai Weiwei: “Ruptures” at Farschou Foundation Through December 22nd, 2015

Saturday, August 1st, 2015

Ai Weiwei, Bench (2004), via Faurschou Foundation Copenhagen
 Ai Weiwei, Bench (2004), via Faurschou Foundation Copenhagen

Chinese artist Ai Weiwei is currently presenting an exhibition of collected works that span the artist’s long career, encountering and documenting the artist’s countless conflicts, arrests and vocal critiques of the Chinese regime.  As a social activist, the artist’s work reflects the history and challenges of China in the 21st Century, placed alongside his own reflection and perception of his home country.  His work is intended to act as a form of intervention, and to encourage social change within the contemporary art sphere, while reflecting on China as the product of its vastly deep historical reserves.  This practice, and its history against the backdrop of contemporary China is illustrated in detail at Farschou Foundation this year, as the institution presents Ai Weiwei: Ruptures. (more…)

AO On-Site: Bushwick Open Studios 2015, June 5th-7th, 2015

Monday, June 8th, 2015

A selection of works by Fanny Allie,  via Art Observed
A selection of works by Fanny Allie, via Art Observed

Bushwick Open Studios has come and gone in the North Brooklyn arts hub, with another year of exhibitions and projects spread across the sprawling industrial landscapes of the borough closing to strong attendance.

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Venice – Jimmie Durham: ‘Venice: Objects, Work and Tourism’ at Fondazione Querini Stampalia through September 20th, 2015

Wednesday, May 20th, 2015

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Jimmie Durham, On The Island of Burano Women Make Lace Hopefully (2015), all photos by Sophie Kitching for Art Observed

The American-born artist and poet Jimmie Durham presents a site-specific project entitled Venice: Object, Work and Tourism at the Fondazione Querini Stampalia during the 56th Venice Biennale. The exhibition features a series of subtle yet vibrant sculptures, which incite our perception of commonplace objects and everyday materials. Stone, glass, brick, wood, water, words, gold, leather, paper, metal, shell, and plastic are thus collected, displaced and assembled by the artist, distilling a new physical language.

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AO On-Site: NADA New York 2015 AT Basketball City, May 14th-17th, 2015

Monday, May 18th, 2015

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Josh Reames at Johannes Vogt, all photos via Art Observed

NADA New York returned to the edge of the Lower East Side, drawing a diverse, hip crowd to the Basketball City complex. Free in price, NADA once again brought high-quality exhibitors and young artists, combining art from regional and international galleries alongside NYC Downtown heavy hitters.  This year’s preview event was an engaging alternative to the bright lights and high prices of Frieze. Embodying the social, communal nature of the city’s young arts scene, NADA’s Preview day was filled with with conversation, friendly jokes and familial reunions.  Maintaining the lightness of art openings opposed to the serious air of sales oriented art fairs, the galleries, their friends and artists will spend this weekend sipping drinks out of plastic cups while a roster of interdisciplinary performances, conversations and events take place. (more…)

Venice – Christoph Büchel: ‘THE MOSQUE’ at the Icelandic Pavilion During the Venice Biennale Through November 22nd, 2015

Saturday, May 16th, 2015

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Santa Maria della Misericordia church converted in THE MOSQUE: The First Mosque in the Historic City of Venice (2015) by Christoph Büchel, all photos by Sophie Kitching for Art Observed

Historically, there have been no mosques in the city of Venice.  Despite the port city’s history as an open gateway to the East and a point of trade that facilitated new cultural, artistic and scientific developments to spread across Europe from trade with the Ottoman Empire and beyond, the city has never permitted the construction or reconstitution of a site of worship for its Muslim population.  Today, in the heated political climate that surrounds international conflicts, not to mention the recent Italian (and, at large, European) controversy regarding immigration from Syria, Lebanon and other regions in North Africa and the Middle East, the prospects for a dedicated Islamic worship site seems even less likely.  For the time being, however, the Venice Biennale has changed this scenario, as the Swiss-born, Iceland-based artist Christoph Büchel opened his frankly-titled installation THE MOSQUE: The First Mosque in the Historic City of Venice this month. (more…)

Venice – The National Pavilions at the Venice Biennale Through November 22nd, 2015

Wednesday, May 13th, 2015

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Céleste Boursier-Mougenot, Rêvolutions (2015), French Pavilion, via Sophie Kitching for Art Observed

Running concurrently with the Central Pavilion’s curated exhibition, the respective National Pavilions on view at the Giardini and Arsenale are one of Venice’s defining aspects.  Featuring important solo exhibitions for both emerging and career artists, carefully-curated group shows and special projects, each pavilion’s focus allows the international perspective of the Biennale to truly take shape. (more…)

AO On-Site – Venice: “All the World’s Futures” at the Giardini in Venice Through November 22nd, 2015

Saturday, May 9th, 2015

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At the entrance to the Biennale’s Central Pavilion, via Sophie Kitching for Art Observed

The Central Pavilion in Venice’s Giardini is the second site for All the World’s Futures, the main curatorial project around which the Biennale centers itself.  Featuring another series of artists spread out inside the exhibition space’s remarkable white facade, the exhibition continues its investigation of debris and late capitalism through a more playful, yet equally critical set of works from its counterpart at the Arsenale. (more…)

AO On-Site – Venice: “All the World’s Futures” – The 56th Venice Biennale at The Arsenale Through November 22nd, 2015

Wednesday, May 6th, 2015

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Ibrahim Mahama, Out of Bounds (2015), via Sophie Kitching for Art Observed

The first open hours have come and gone in the City of Bridges today, and the 56th edition of the Venice BiennaleAll the World’s Futures is now open.  Welcoming 89 different countries to exhibit in the city, with 29 in the Arsenale, 31 in the Central Pavilion, and an additional 29 spread across in the City itself, the exhibition is a monumental affair, with a number of auxiliary events, openings and parties.

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New York – Stephen Shore at 303 Gallery Through November 1st, 2014

Saturday, November 1st, 2014

Stephen Shore at 303 Gallery (Installation View)
Stephen Shore at 303 Gallery (Installation View)

Since the early 70’s Stephen Shore has been photographing narratives that never fully reveal their endings, positioning his camera somewhere between a noncommittal viewer and a localized resident of the space he shoots. His current exhibition at 303 Gallery adds another phase to the pioneer photographer’s career, stretching out into two controversial territories, series of work that coincides with the bitter political and social turmoil of their politics: photographs documenting the current state of the Israeli-Palestinian border on the West Bank, and the lives of Ukranian Holocaust survivors. (more…)

New York — Do Ho Suh: Drawings Is On View at Lehmann Maupin Through October 25, 2014

Saturday, October 25th, 2014

Do Ho Suh, Rubbing/Loving Project: Dormitory Room at Gwangju Catholic Lifelong Institute, (2012)
Do Ho Suh, Rubbing/Loving Project: Dormitory Room at Gwangju Catholic Lifelong Institute (2012)

On view both at Lower East Side and Chelsea locations of Lehmann Maupin, visitors can see a collection of recent drawing works by Do Ho Suh, the influential Korean artist who is broadly known for his soulful architectural installations.  Reinterpreting and immortalizing physical spaces through the creation of subtle reflections and traces, Suh accentuates each object and artworks’ autobiographical importance for him. Using resin or translucent fabric, Suh creates replicas of various interiors, re-imagining his childhood home in Seoul or his New York apartment when he was a teenager.

Do Ho Suh, Rubbing/Loving Project: New York Corridor (2014)
Do Ho Suh, Rubbing/Loving Project: New York Corridor (2014)

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New York — Jonathan Monk: “I went to school with someone called Jonathon Monk” at Casey Kaplan Through October 18th, 2014

Friday, October 17th, 2014

Jonathan Monk, A Copy of Deflated Sculpture No. 1 (2009-2014), all photos via Casey Kaplan
Jonathan Monk, A Copy of Deflated Sculpture No. 1 (2009-2014), all photos via Osman Yerebakan for Art Observed

Appropriating the works of the lead players of Conceptual and Minimal art with an allusive wit, the British artist Jonathan Monk is known for adding his own accent to the often trenchant dynamics of the art world.  In his current show at Casey Kaplan, however, Monk embarks on an autobiographical investigation, reminiscing and eventually interpreting his artistic relation with various other artists. (more…)

Tel Aviv – Adel Abdessemed: “Mon Enfant” at Dvir Gallery Through October 11th, 2014

Tuesday, October 7th, 2014

Adel Abdessemed, Mon Enfant (2014)
Adel Abdessemed, Mon Enfant (2014)

Tel Aviv’s Dvir Gallery is currently presenting a new body of work by the controversial Algerian artist Adel Abdessemed. Known for his highly challenging assemblies of sculpture, video and installation, Abdessemed has not been hesitant to problematize the dynamics of politics, religion and social justice from various vantage points and perspectives.  From gruesome footages of animal fights in Mexico to a giant twisted airplane, his art aims to thrill, shock and most importantly provoke. Far from subtlety, the London based artist delivers strongly vocal works of art, positioning himself as an anarchist and a rebel, with the intent of redefining the role of an artist in society. (more…)

New York – Rene Ricard: “Remember” at Half Gallery Through September 8th, 2014

Friday, September 5th, 2014

Rene Ricard, The Archaic Smile (1978)
Rene Ricard, The Archaic Smile (1978)

An artist embracing multiple formats, genres and techniques, Rene Ricard was born into a troubled family in Boston in 1946. Before he was eighteen years old, Ricard had already moved to New York, and immersed himself in its vibrant Downtown scene, appearing in many of Andy Warhol’s films, and becoming a regular in the artist’s “Factory.”  Referred to as ‘the George Sanders of the Lower East Side, the Rex Reed of the art world’ by Warhol, Ricard emerged as a highly influential art critic in the early 80’s, playing major a role in launching the careers of artists such as Julian Schnabel, Francesco VezzoliKeith Haring and Jean-Michel Basquiat, whose graffiti works were compared to the wall paintings in Pompeii by Ricard in his famous Artforum essay The Radiant Child. (more…)

New York – Nancy Rubins: “Our Friend Fluid Metal” at Gagosian Gallery Through September 13th, 2014

Sunday, August 31st, 2014

Nancy Rubins, Our Friend Fluid Metal (2014)/
Nancy Rubins, Our Friend Fluid Metal (2014)

Nancy Rubins has not been hesitant about creating mammoth works of art, as seen in her first public installation at a shopping center in Illinois in 1981 or her 1995 installation of salvaged airplanes at MoMA.  Exhibiting objects collected from thrift stores and and secondhand shops, the artist’s sculptural assemblages are charged with an eclectic energy.  Televisions, planes, surfboards, heaters and mattresses are just a few source materials transformed into complex structures, charged with tangible energy and an inexplicable resistance to gravity.  (more…)

New York – “Itself Not So” at Lisa Cooley Through August 29th, 2014

Thursday, August 28th, 2014

Aram Saroyan, Lighght (1989)
Aram Saroyan, Lighght (1989), All images are by Osman Can Yerebakan for Art Observed.

Aphasia, a brain dysfunction resulting in the failure of comprehension of language, is the starting point of Lisa Cooley’s summer group show Itself Not So.  Curated by staff member Rachel Valinsky, and titled after a poem by Susan Howe, the selection grabs this condition as a metaphor for the disconnect between mind and speech, examining the possible fractures causing intellectual and emotional failures regarding the self. The exhibition argues that, with the corruption of the harmony among sound, thoughts and speech, a possible chaos and detachment brings an individual’s functionality to a standstill. Both intellectual and emotional, social and biological, this turmoil challenges the autonomy of those inflicted. (more…)

New York – “The St. Petersburg Paradox” at Swiss Institute Through August 17th, 2014

Friday, August 8th, 2014

Sarah Ortmeyer, Sankt Petersburg Paradox (2014)
Sarah Ortmeyer, Sankt Petersburg Paradox (2014)

Among the decision-making factors in set expanse of time, risk plays a crucial part.  Simply described as the potential of losing an owned value upon a taken action, the risk element occupies a noticeable part in economic, social and political dynamics, aside from striking as a noteworthy reality to consider for individuals in the daily routine. The St. Petersburg Paradox, a group show on view at Swiss Institute through August 17th, observes this broad topic through a determined perspective, suggesting an alternative reading based on the reflection of risk elements in artworks.

St, Petersbug Paradox (Installation View)
The St. Petersbug Paradox (Installation View) (more…)

New York – Scott Benzel at Maccarone Through August 8th, 2014

Wednesday, August 6th, 2014


Scott Benzel, Counterfeit Nike ‘Heaven’s Gate’ SB Dunks (2011) Photo by Joerg Lohse

For the past several years, Arizona-born, L.A.-based artist Scott Benzel has been mining the mundane objects of capitalism and its reflection in the cultural agenda through his assemblage and display-based works, challenging the designated meanings of everyday objects as they enter into dialogue with each other. Approaching  simple and mostly utilitarian commodities as reflections of their collective or individualist identities, Benzel decodes dismissed or undiscovered subtleties in contemporary culture, and allows unspoken connections to come to the fore. (more…)

New York – “Duality of Existence: Post Fukushima” at Friedman Benda Through August 9th, 2014

Monday, August 4th, 2014

Yusuke Suga, Mediator, 2013 Courtesy of Friedman Benda and the artists
Yusuke Suga, Mediator (2013), Courtesy of Friedman Benda and the artists

The inarguable force of nature and its fearful destructive impact hit Japan in March 2011 during the Fukushima nuclear meltdown, afflicting millions of lives and causing billions of damage. The number one earthquake in terms of strength in the history of Japan and the fifth in world records, and its resulting tsunami left the coast of Japan reeling from its physical and psychological damage, particularly after the meltdown of three plants at Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant.  Aside from the massive physical devastation it caused, the catastrophe carried charged memories and impacts to those who witnessed the disaster, either first-hand or indirectly. (more…)

New York – “Neu at Gladstone” at Gladstone Gallery Through August 1st, 2014

Friday, August 1st, 2014

John Knight, Work, in situ, Galerie NEU:MD72:Gladstone Gallery, (2013)
John Knight, Work, in situ, Galerie NEU:MD72:Gladstone Gallery (2013)

One of Berlin’s most notable galleries, Galerie Neu, is Gladstone Gallery’s guest for this summer, presenting a reflection from the German capital’s vibrant contemporary art scene. Known for its avant-garde art spaces and affordable living conditions for emerging artists, Berlin has been one of the most influential cities for the European art scene, and the selection at Gladstone Gallery, mainly focusing on the notion of place and displacement, gives the opportunity to catch up with the city’s recent art trends. (more…)

New York – “To do as one would” at David Zwirner Through July 25th, 2014

Wednesday, July 23rd, 2014

Charles Harlan, Pallets, 2013
Charles Harlan, Pallets (2013)

Seeking to understand the various materials and objects utilized in contemporary art To do as one would is on view at David Zwirner’s 19th street location this month. The exhibition, brought together by three staff members at the gallery, uses the full space provided to host a selection of works aiming to investigate the broad understanding of alternative materials as applied to various bodies of thought and execution. (more…)

New York – Danh Vo: “We The People” at City Hall Park and Brooklyn Bridge Park Through December 5th, 2014

Monday, July 21st, 2014

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Danh Vo, We The People (2010-2014) at Brooklyn Bridge Park

This summer, Vietnamese artist Danh Vo is paying his homage to the Statue of Liberty as a symbol of American legacy with a group of installations on view at City Hall Park and Brooklyn Bridge Park.  From May 17th to December 5th, the public will be able to see We The People, a life-sized replica of the Statue of Liberty separated into 250 copper parts that Vo created using the same processes used on the original statue. (more…)

New York – “Fixing a Hole” Group Show at Koenig & Clinton Through August 2nd, 2014

Sunday, July 20th, 2014

Roman Signer, Flasche (Bottle), 2007
Roman Signer, Flasche (Bottle) (2007)

The summer season means a few things for the art world: beach installations, special projects in the Hamptons, and of course, group shows. During the hot summer months many galleries are presenting selections of works by different artists through various thematic ideas, giving gallery goers the opportunity to discover new readings between different artists’ works.  Among these galleries is Koenig & Clinton, hosting Fixing a Hole, a group exhibition investigating the notion of “fixing” in both meanings: mending what is broken and securing what is unstable. The tightly-curated selection focuses on a niche concept, making the occasionally challenging group show tradition an appealing one. Works in various mediums articulate the instincts of correction and stabilization of a dysfunctional case, arguing for the sensation of readjustment. (more…)

New York – Larry Clark: “they thought i were but i aren’t anymore” at Luhring Augustine Through August 1st, 2014

Thursday, July 17th, 2014

Larry Clark, Knoxville (homage to Brad Renfro), 2011 via Osman Can Yerebakan
Larry Clark, Knoxville (homage to Brad Renfro) (2011) all images via Osman Can Yerebakan

Currently on view at Luhring Augustine is a career spanning exhibition of Larry Clark, one of the most vocal representatives of the American youth since the early 60’s. Tulsa, the inspiration and the namesake of his infamous photography book, is where Clark began experimenting with photography at an early age with his mother’s camera, using his circle of friends as his object of interest.  Clark started to document the suburban lifestyle through the lens of a generation engaged with drug use, underage sex and violence. Adding further weight to the already graphic nature of his subject matter, the rawness and the honesty of Clark’s perspective as an insider’s point of view has marked him as one of the foremost voices in American photography. (more…)

New York – Carlito Carvalhosa: “Possibility Matters” at Sonnabend Gallery Through July 26th, 2014

Tuesday, July 8th, 2014

Carlito Carvalhosa, Possibility Matters (detail), 2014
Carlito Carvalhosa, Possibility Matters (detail), 2014

Carlito Carvalhosa’s works, similar to early Renaissance church paintings, have the potential to make viewers feel equally enclosed and daunted by scale. The artist’s installations look upon the viewers, asking their submission and surrender towards their magnitude in structure and constructive. Utilizing a broad range of materials in conjunction with his work’s scale and size, Carvalhosa’s practice includes wood, plaster, wax or glass in forms that seem challenging or exceedingly fragile to execute.  It’s this delicately immense style that Sonnabend Gallery is currently presenting with Possibility Matters, a two-room installation transforming wood columns into a room-sized piece in Carvalhosa’s hands. (more…)