Galerie Besson, Retrospective of a lifelong passion / Officine Saffi, Milan, Italy
Galerie Besson, Retrospective of a lifelong passion / Officine Saffi, Milan, Italy March 22 - May 21, 2012
After the closure of the historic London gallery, Officine Saffi presents an exclusive anthology of the collection in a group show from March 22 to May 21, 2012. This exhibition is a tribute by Officine Saffi to Anita Besson, her inspiration and work, in the form of a retrospective exhibition of her collection.
The exhibition provides an opportunity to see art ceramic works by some important and influential international artists: Lucie Rie, Hans Coper, Claudi Casanovas and Jennifer Lee, alongside pieces by three Italian artists, Lucio Fontana, Nanni Valentini and Carlo Zauli.
Galerie Besson was founded in London in 1988, and it rapidly became an international point of reference for the greatest ceramic artists, hosting over 150 exhibitions featuring artists from all over the world.
Officine Saffi is an exhibition space in central Milan, very close to Santa Maria delle Grazie and Leonardo da Vinci’s Last Supper. The gallery is dedicated to all aspects of ceramics. As well as the exhibition space, there is a workshop complete with kilns, wheels and all other equipment needed for ceramics, including high-temperature processes. The ceramics magazine La ceramica in Italia e nel mondo, the only publication of this type in Italy, also has its editorial office at the location.
Anita Besson will be present at Officine Saffi for the opening, which will be held on Thursday, 22 March 2012 at 6.00 pm (Entrance by invitation only).
Andrew Barton: Final Frontier / SODA, Istanbul, Turkey
Andrew Barton: Final Frontier / SODA, Istanbul, Turkey March 1 - April 14, 2012
SODA is pleased to announce “Final Frontier”, the first solo show of internationally renowned sculptor Andrew Barton. The exhibit consists of space helmets from three major religions. The expanse of religion to our final frontier, space. Expressing a dystopian future of possible religious conflict in the heavens.
Andrew Barton was born in 1970 London, England. MFA from The Oslo National Academy of the Arts (KHiO). Male fertility, non-loving sex, violence and cannibalism were reoccurring themes in Barton`s work from the end of the 90`s. Barton`s work then took a new direction focusing on the torso or body fragment in combination with a foreign object or abstract shape, dealing with bodily transformations and meditative states of being. His current work deals with industrial products from dystopian futures; space helmets designed for religious expansion in space, and bomb suits tailored for the mundane acts of shopping and child`s play in a future society gone bad.
SODA is a contemporary art and design space founded in Istanbul in January 2010. SODA focuses on artists and designers using different materials and medias from various disciplines and supports contemporary art jewellery, which is a globally rising trend. SODA presents artists and designers distinctive in their field and examples of contemporary movements to audiences that are open to innovation and aims to introduce a new perspective to collectors.
Gallery Hours: Monday to Saturday between 11am and 7pm.
Melissa Stern: The Talking Cure / Fetherston Gallery, Seattle, USA
Melissa Stern: The Talking Cure / Fetherston Gallery, Seattle, USA March 9 – April 7, 2012
Artist Reception: Thursday, March 29, 5.00 – 8.00 pm
The Fetherston Gallery is proud to present “The Talking Cure” exhibition, by New York artist Melissa Stern, a groundbreaking interactive art exhibition integrating sculpture, contemporary literature, online audio and Smartphone technology.
Smartphone Meets Sculpture “The Talking Cure” exhibition consists of ten of Stern’s sculptures each accompanied by an interactive audio track created by one of ten literary collaborators. Stern’s sculptures, fabricated figures combining mixed materials and found objects, with deeply drawn surfaces, possess an abundance of personality. Stern has collaborated with ten contemporary writers - poets, novelist, screenwriters, and playwrights - to each choose a sculpture and write his or her monologue of the goings on in the sculpture’s mind. The monologues are transformed into audio recordings, stored “in the cloud,” and triggered via a QR tag imbedded in the sculpture. When the viewer points a Smartphone, Blackberry or I-Phone at the QR tag it will trigger audio to hear the inner voice of the sculpture.
Interactive Multimedia in the Manner of Sigmund Freud The viewer will also have the opportunity to record his or her own imagined monologue for the sculpture. These recording will be available for playback, creating an added interactive dimension to the work. Viewers will be creators as well as receivers of the back-story for each sculpture; the exhibition takes its title from Sigmund Freud’s original name for the practice of psychoanalysis.
Melissa Stern has worked in both sculpture and drawings for over twenty years, living and exhibiting in California, Europe, and New York City. Her work is featured in a number of prominent corporate and museum collections including Dow Jones, JP Morgan, The Arkansas Art Center and the Kohler Corporation, where she was an artist-in-residence. She has also had residences at the Serenbe Institute outside of Atlanta Ga. and at The Washington School of Glass in Washington DC. Her artwork was has been featured in Trans- Ceramic Art, 500 Figures in Clay, and American Illustration 26 – The Best American Illustrations of 2007.
“My work has a sculptural yet functional element to it and encompasses a sense of traditional ceramic techniques. Within this tradition is the art of storytelling and symbols which evoke certain sentiments and nostalgia but also a sense of the present environment. This environment is psychological and therefore each piece points to emotions within the narrative.
My present work is currently narrated by the symbol of the chair. How does one define a simple thing like the chair? What makes the chair, a chair? As James Joyce says in A Portrait of a young man, “Is a chair conceived as a work of tragic or comic art?” No other object forcefully shapes the physical, social and emotional dimensions of our lives. On the chair seats only one person at a time and responds to the body through comfort. It has a communicative function and offers a glimpse into our collective ideas about that sense of comfort and order. One can imagine the world from a persons’ perspective as it communicates compassion. Just as its absence communicates disrespect, lack of empathy and loss, whether this loss is a physical or emotional one.” Kira O’Brien
Intrigued by the tenuous connection between past, present and future and the shadowy, illusive meaning of time, Annie Woodford makes work that is both haunting and enigmatic. Shifting boundaries between science and metaphysics and an enduring interest in parallel universe theory instill the pieces with a heightened intensity, whilst an obsession with hidden worlds has prompted her investigations into microscopy and the nano universe - making the unseen seen.
Captivated by the natural world and our mysterious, infinite universe - whether seen at macroscopic or microscopic levels - she finds them the source of endless fascination and wonder. Mankind’s place within that universe and the dichotomy between our wish for progress and our proclivity for self-destruction, has become a central theme.
A passion for frozen environments and the message they embrace, not only from the past but also for the future of our planet has resulted in research trips to the Arctic and Iceland and a detailed study of the coldest place on Earth – Antarctica.
The work exhibits qualities that reflect the natural world, elements that highlight its beauty and transience. Fragile, frangible, complex and esoteric, delicately balanced between risk and control, her pieces float and oscillate between absence and presence, hovering silently in a place between.
‘Nature is an infinite sphere of which the center is everywhere and the circumference nowhere’ Blaise Pascal, mathematician, poet, philosopher.
Ebru Özseçen: True Love Soul Mate / RAMPA Istanbul, Turkey
Ebru Özseçen: True Love Soul Mate / RAMPA İstanbul, Turkey March 02 — April 07, 2012
Ebru Özseçen combines her experience in the fields of architecture, design and contemporary art to explore different aspects of psychological and sociological relationship between space and body. Her work presents great diversity; ranging from urban intervention to sculpture and objects, from photography to video, from film installations to drawings. The artist is concerned with the dualities of inside/ outside and public/private; and explores individual memory in contemporary society. Ebru Özseçen investigates the seemingly mundane to expose its magical and unseen aspects. She reveals a space where fantasy and memory hide in plain sight.
It is impossible to disregard the gender aspect in Özseçen’s work, in which she indiscriminately plays with the androgynous form – the phallus, vulva, uterus or scrotum. At times pushing the boundaries of pornographic obscenity, the artist always places erotic intensity in the foreground. On the other hand, in many of her works it is possible to see Özseçen driven by her deep-seated admiration for the tradition of artisanship. The artist is drawn to the sensual quality of the form and the beauty of a well-accomplished object. This approach invites us to interpret the artist’s practice from a new perspective. Özseçen’s sharp gaze on the form, and her romantic obsession with the beautiful, the pure, and the unsoiled confront us as sharp yet sensitive, violent yet graceful works that have been refined in the hands of a craftsman.
Özseçen’s new work, Gerçek Aşk Gönül Eşi / True Love Soul Mate (2011), which will constitute the backbone of the exhibition at Rampa, is comprised of over 100 separate glass pieces. This work is realized in collaboration with Mayer of Munich and Glasshütte Lamberts, which are among the most prominent handmade glass studios of the world that has for the first time opened its doors to contemporary arts for this work. Each piece is produced in different sizes and forms with hours of effort in 1450-degree ovens. Recalling many of Özseçen’s work, heat once more emerges as a dominating component in this work, both as a physical force and as an allegory. For this work, the artist divulges that “the concept of true love and soul mate employed in the title should be sought not in the realm of romantic love, but rather in companionship, camaraderie as signified in the craftsman’s delicate touch on the objects he has amorously devoted himself to.” Installing two of her works of the same form together, one from the beginning and the other from the most recent phase of her career, Özseçen incites the audience to trace a playful phantom form.
Karen Bennicke and Steen Ipsen: Geometrical Evolution / Copenhagen Ceramics, Denmark March 1-24, 2012
Artist Talk: Saturday, March 3rd, 2pm
Geometric Interpretations Copenhagen Ceramics presents a new exhibition with works by Karen Bennicke and Steen Ipsen, two highly experienced ceramists with a particularly well-developed sense of operating visually within one of the great fields of inspiration for ornamentation – the world of geometry.
Karen Bennicke and Steen Ipsen have both repeatedly returned to this inexhaustible source of astonishment and fascination, and for their first exhibition together they offer new and surprising visual interpretations of geometric phenomena.
Karen Bennicke has for many years remained a remarkable profile within the context of contemporary ceramics, in Denmark and internationally. First and foremost, she is a real form-person. Her ceramic objects are typically characterized by a great complexity of form; they are spatial visions, often constructions reminiscent of contemporary architecture. Through self-defined systems and an almost intuitive mathematical construction-method, she arrives at surprising, poetic expressions somewhere between exactitude, the illogical and occasionally even the absurd.
Light and shadow are always important factors in Karen Bennicke’s sculptures. In the new works the choice of material helps to emphasize the multi-faceted surface, that has resulted from her process this time. The unglazed, matt clay surfaces enhance the great variation of light and shadow, bringing to mind the kaleidoscopic universe of crystals; a recurrent theme in her oeuvre, and one she has intensively been working on in recent years.
The precise approach of the textbooks is not defining the relationship with geometry for Steen Ipsen either. He perceives geometry as images and pattern. From the very start of his ceramic career he has had a keen eye for the ornamental potential within the universe of geometric form. Early examples of this are his large porcelain vessels from the 1990ies with strict, repetitively faceted forms, that turn into brightly colored patterns on the surface. In later works he has thematically explored repetition in the form – or the ’variation of repetition’, as was his title for an earlier exhibition.
Tiger Strikes Asteroid is pleased to announce its March 2012 exhibition, Memento, the first solo exhibition by TSA member Jaime Alvarez.
Alvarez’s work explores particular details of icons that function within a larger established structure or ideology. He examines and subverts the idea of memory encapsulated within objects, which share an established history of decorative use.
“In allegory, the vision of the reader is larger than the vision of the text; the reader dreams to an excess, to an overabundance. To read an allegorical narration is to see beyond the relations of narration, character, desire. To read allegory is to live in the future, the anticipation of closure, beyond the closure of narrative.” Susan Stewart, On Longing: Narratives of the Miniature, the Gigantic, the Souvenir, the Collection
Memento is a collection of one hundred framed photographs of second hand souvenirs. The figurines have been painted black, lit, and photographed from the rear or three quarters view, denying the viewer the “familiar” frontal view of the objects. Alvarez’s manipulation liberates the figurines, freeing them of past associations. The once ubiquitous statuettes are transformed into a sublime tableau. The objects speak a completely new language. Imbued with emotion, they become powerful talismans, gazing into the void.
Ceramic Impressions by Judy DiBiase / BDA Dental Museum, London, UK
Ceramic Impressions by Judy DiBiase / BDA Dental Museum, London, UK February 23 - May 24, 2012
Works in porcelain inspired by the collections of the BDA Dental Museum and its visitors.
London based ceramic artist Judy DiBiase has been working with the museum to capture the visitor’s different reactions to the museum’s collections and the memories the objects provoke. These have then provided part of the inspiration for Judy’s own response, in ceramics, to the museum’s collection which can be seen on show in the museum and around the BDA.
"Objects make us think. We think of the time and place when they were used, their purpose and method of use. They evoke memory, acting as a catalyst for a host of experiences that are revived by interaction.
The BDA Dental Museum houses a fantastic and fascinating array of objects that are connected to my memories. My father, David DiBiase was a leading orthodontist; I grew up surrounded by images of teeth. Plaster impressions in green boxes, diagrams and x-rays of displaced incisors and canines. I remember Dad dictating letters and storing dental notes in brown files. Looking at the museum collection my memories become heightened and vivid.
My practice is concerned with how memories can be drawn out by objects. Memories layer to inform an emotional understanding of ourselves and our environment. I have worked with the Museum collection, recording people’s reactions to objects which are connected by the observer to personal incidents and events. My work is exhibited alongside the collections, so taking it out of a traditional art gallery setting.
“The concept of my recent work is about form, and it grows from my curiosity about space; it investigates the relationship between two objects and it questions how we should make the landscape to react to man-made object. In my work I aim to explore that joyful, interesting, and mysterious relationship between objects and to create compositions with complex configurations though simple and unexpected components.
It is my intention to trigger the viewer to look closer and rediscover the ordinary, yet unfamiliar relationships that exists everywhere within all objects and human beings. Through sensations, communication and exploration, both objects and humans are able to obtain appropriate space and attention. I hope my work is able to look into this perception of the relationships, but more importantly - to enrich this relationship and establish a sense of place.” Kwok-Pong Tso