Global contemporary art events and news observed from New York City. Suggestion? Email us.
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Olafur Eliasson Plans Giant Fountain for Versailles

May 3rd, 2016

Olafur Eliasson, via Art DailyOlafur Eliasson is planning a giant water fountain for his Versailles commission this summer, playing on one originally designed for the palace grounds during its construction, which was abandoned due to the logistics concerned with pumping water for its operation.   “Of course I could tell you how many meters it is, but I am not going to because we need to leave it to the audience to make up their minds how high is high,” he said.
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MoMA Offering Buyouts to Workers in Preparation for Renovations

May 3rd, 2016

MoMA, via NYTThe Museum of Modern Art is offering a contract buyout for employees aged 55 or older with at least nine years of service as of July 31, as the museum prepares for curtailed activity during its ambitious renovation.  “The museum is in a transitional stage in terms of the scope of its operations, which are at a reduced level during the renovation period,” the museum said in a statement. “The program is entirely voluntary and is intended to benefit staff who are considering retirement this year.”
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Dan Colen’s Philanthropic Farming Venture Profiled in WSJ

May 3rd, 2016

Dan Colen, via WSJThe WSJ profiles Dan Colen’s upstate farm project, where the artist’s full crop output is donated to the New York City Food Bank.  “Art turned out to be way more of a business than I ever intended,” Colen says of his venture.  “The last thing I need is more business.”
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Maurizio Cattelan Interviewed Over Plans for Frieze New York Installation with Live Donkey

May 3rd, 2016

Maurizio Cattelan, via Financial TimesMaurizio Cattelan is interviewed in the Financial Times this weekend, as he prepares to re-stage his 1994 work Enter at Your Own Risk — Do Not Touch, Do Not Feed, No Smoking, No Photographs, No Dogs, Thank you at Frieze New York, an installation the features a live donkey in a small room at the fair.  “Based on my experience it’s considerably difficult to force a donkey into doing something it perceives to be dangerous for whatever reason,” Cattelan says of concerns for the animal’s safety.
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RIP: Iconic Sculptor Marisol Passes Away at 85

May 3rd, 2016

Marisol, via NYTMarisol, the Venezuelan-American artist who carved sculptural portraits of politicians, historical figures, and other iconic figures of contemporary life, has passed away at the age of 85.  The artist, who first saw success during the early 1960’s, often blurred the iconography of pop art through mediations on the body and her craft that complicated classifications of her work.  Yet her appeal was undeniable, and her unique approach to sculptural figuration earned her recognition.  “She was an incredibly significant sculptor who has been inappropriately written out of history,” Marina Pacini, chief curator at the Memphis Brooks Museum of Art, who organized a traveling survey of the artist’s work, says. “In the 1960s, she had more press and more visibility than Andy Warhol.”
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Mike Kelley Foundation Funds Mini-Golf Piece Examining Urban Zoning in LA

May 3rd, 2016

Los Angeles Poverty Department, via Art NewsThe Mike Kelley Foundation for the Arts has announced its first round of commissions in Los Angeles, among them a miniature golf course running through the city’s Skid Row neighborhood, which examines and underlines how zoning policy directly affects and reshapes cities.  “Zoning is something that is both totally fundamental to the way a city works and the way it feels and who gets supported and who gets booted from the city,” says artist Rosten Woo, one of the organizers of the piece.
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Art Newspaper Notes Popularity for Older French Artists in Both Market and Institution

May 3rd, 2016

Francois Morellet, via Art NewspaperThe Art Newspaper notes the increased popularity of heritage French artists in recent years, in part based on attractive market prices, and a previous lack of institutional attention.  “In France, we don’t always do enough to celebrate our own,” Pompidou Director Bernard Blistène says.
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Simon de Pury Profiled on NPR

May 3rd, 2016

Simon de Pury Phillips Auction House courtesy GQSimon de Pury is the subject of a profile piece on NPR this week, offering some backstory on the auctioneer, and his strategy on building his former company, Phillips de Pury, into a force in the contemporary market.  “I didn’t have the means, the financial means to take on the two houses frontally. So we thought, let’s develop areas in which we become the best,” he says.  “So we thought we go to do contemporary art, emerging contemporary particularly, design and photography. And in these fields, we just become the best.”
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Artists Space Leaving its SoHo Location

May 3rd, 2016

Artists Space, via NYTArtists Space is leaving its Greene Street home, following its landlord’s decision to build a penthouse atop the building, a project that would cause considerable delays and interruptions to its exhibition schedule.  The space is looking to move “into a neighborhood where artists currently live and work, which has not been the case for a long time in SoHo,” says Director Stefan Kalmar.
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Wim Delvoye Buys a Series of Desert Mansions in Iran

April 30th, 2016

Kashan, via Art NewspaperWim Delvoye has purchased a series of desert mansions in the Iranian city of Kashan, which he will use as exhibition and studio space.  “I’m not going to live for ever. Giving back means giving something to the art world, supporting the local art scene,” Delvoye says. 
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REFERENCE LIBRARY

Warhol Prints Stolen from Springfield Museum

April 11th, 2016

The Springfield Art Museum Wing closed after theft, via Springfield News LeaderA set of Andy Warhol Campbell’s Soup Can prints have been stolen from the Springfield Art Museum in Missouri.  “There hasn’t been an incident in any recent history,” says spokesperson Cora Scott.  “We are constantly working on improving security measures and find it a challenging balance with keeping art accessible to the community. We appreciate the outpouring of support we are already receiving from our art patrons.” Read More »

Paris – Oscar Tuazon: “Shelters” at Chantal Crousel Through April 16th, 2016

April 10th, 2016

Oscar Tuazon, Shelters (Installation View)
Oscar Tuazon, Shelters (Installation View), All Photo credits: © Florian Kleinefenn
Courtesy of the artist and Galerie Chantal Crousel, Paris

Wordplay is the primary focus in Oscar Tuazon’s current exhibition at Chantal Crousel Gallery in Paris this month, pursuing a constantly folding, nebulous interpretation of concepts around reading, space, text and composition.  The show, Shelters, takes its title from the angular structures erected throughout the gallery, accompanied by wall-hangings and utilitarian sculptural works that offer multiple points of engagement and interaction with the viewer. Read More »

New York – Joan Jonas: “They Came to Us Without a Word II” at The Kitchen, April 6th-8th, 2016

April 8th, 2016

Joan Jonas, They Came to Us Without a Word II (2015), via Art Observed
Joan Jonas, They Came to Us Without a Word II (2015), via Art Observed

This week, Joan Jonas returned to The Kitchen to present They Came to Us Without a Word,” a reprisal and reimagining of her work from the U.S. Pavilion at the Venice Biennale last year.   Working closely with a group of schoolchildren, and featuring a live score by her longtime collaborator Jason Moran, the show takes her initial project, and moves it closer towards a standalone stage production, dwelling on her interests in fragmented media, interrelated histories and meanings, and human understandings of the world.   Read More »

New York – Anri Sala: “Answer Me” at the New Museum Through April 10th, 2016

April 7th, 2016

Anri Sala, Moth in B Flat (2015), via Art Observed
Anri Sala, Moth in B Flat (2015), via Art Observed

Spread across three floors at the New Museum, Anri Sala’s current career retrospective is an impressively deep, immersive offering; a lyrical, twisting series of pieces that investigate the phenomena of sound in its relations to cultural, institutional and technological containers.

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New York – Urs Fischer: “Misunderstandings in the Quest for the Universal” at Gagosian Gallery Through April 23rd, 2016

April 7th, 2016

Urs Fischer, officeguy (2016), via Art Observed
Urs Fischer, officeguy (2016), via Art Observed

Entering Gagosian’s fifth floor exhibition space on the Upper East Side, one is greeted with something of an exercise in phenomenological affect.  Smelling faintly of bacon (the artist stipulated that several slices must be cooked in the gallery space each morning), the space is adorned with sweeping brushstrokes on each of the walls, and topped with a series of aluminum panels, bearing cartoon icons twisted into abstract geometric arrangements.  The result is a twisting, surreal environment that feels as surreal as it looks. Read More »

New York — “In The Making” at Luxembourg & Dayan Through April 16th, 2016

April 5th, 2016

Robert Rauschenberg, Tablet Series (1974)
Robert Rauschenberg, Tablet Series (1974)

Currently on view at Luxembourg and Dayan, the group exhibition In The Making seeks to shed light on the often overlooked, yet crucial creative dialogue between the artist and their assistant or assistants in the studio.  Organized by Tamar Margalit, the exhibition, which runs through April 16th, unfolds in a manner similar to a family tree, connecting infamous or remote dots in New York art scene after the 1950’s through shared studio spaces, practices, and the informal education process that often occurs in the relationship between artist and their hired team. Read More »

New York – Adam McEwen: “Harvest” at Petzel Gallery Through April 30th, 2016

April 2nd, 2016

Adam McEwen, Harvest (Installation View), via Art Observed
Adam McEwen, Harvest (Installation View), via Art Observed

Embarking on winding pathways through the landscape of modernity, Adam McEwen’s work frequently dwells on the structures and representations of cognition, discovery and intellectual unraveling, mixing consumer objects, banal materials and re-inscriptions of symbolic systems to create interconnected bodies of work that are as mysteriously compelling as they are varied. Read More »

RIP: Dame Zaha Hadid, Visionary Architect, Aged 65

March 31st, 2016

Zaha Hadid, via BBCRenowned architect Dame Zaha Hadid has passed away at the age of 65.  Hadid has been a foundational voice of contemporary architecture over the course of the early 21st Century, including London’s Olympic Aquatic Centre, the Guangzhou Opera House, and the MAXXI in Rome.   Read More »

New York – “Nice Weather” Curated by David Salle at Skarstedt Gallery Through April 16th, 2016

March 30th, 2016

Carroll Dunham, Mound A (1991-1992), via Art Observed
Carroll Dunham, Mound A (1991-1992), via Art Observed

Flexing his curatorial muscle at both Skarstedt Gallery locations in New York, David Salle has compiled an intriguing collection of recent paintings by a vastly diverse group of artists, and examines their shared interests in the grounds of abstract painting: formal concerns of size, scale and focus, in combination with the compositional elements of color, contrast and hue. Read More »

New York – Sherrie Levine at David Zwirner Through April 2nd, 2016

March 28th, 2016

Sherrie Levine, Pink SMEG Refrigerator and Renoir Nudes (2016), via Art Observed
Sherrie Levine, Pink SMEG Refrigerator and Renoir Nudes (2016), via Art Observed

Opening her first exhibition with David Zwirner in New York City, Sherrie Levine has taken over the 2nd floor of the gallery’s 20th Street Flagship, bringing a body of works that feels like a fitting first entry in her collaboration with Zwirner, while signaling new steps forward in her challenging and cerebral practice.

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