Tim Hawkinson was born in San Francisco, California, in 1960. A graduate of San Jose State University, he later earned his MFA at the University of California, Los Angeles, in 1989. Hawkinson is renowned for creating complex sculptural systems through surprisingly simple means. His installation, “Überorgan”—a stadium-size, fully automated bagpipe—was pieced together from bits of electrical hardware and several miles of inflated plastic sheeting. Hawkinson’s fascination with music and notation can also be seen in “Pentecost,” a work in which the artist tuned cardboard tubes and assembled them in the shape of a giant tree. On this tree, the artist placed twelve life-size robotic replicas of himself, and programmed them to beat out religious hymns at humorously irregular intervals. The source of inspiration for many of Hawkinson’s pieces has been the re-imagining of his own body, and what it means to make a self-portrait of this new or fictionalized body. In 1997, the artist created an exacting, two-inch-tall skeleton of a bird from his own fingernail parings, and later made a feather and egg from his own hair; believable even at a close distance, these works reveal Hawkinson’s attention to detail as well as his obsession with life, death, and the passage of time. Hawkinson has participated in numerous exhibitions in the United States and abroad, including the Venice Biennale (1999); Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art (2000); the Power Plant, Toronto (2000); the Whitney Biennial (2002); and the 2003 Corcoran Biennial, Washington, DC. Tim Hawkinson resides in Los Angeles with his wife. (via)
Martin Creed on My Modern Metropolis Contemporary art doesn’t get much more fun than this! First created in 1998 with white balloons and then redone many times over, Half the Air in a Given Space is an interactive installation, by British artist Martin Creed, that’s comprised of hundreds or thousands of balloons of the same color. As the name suggests, half a room’s entire volume is filled with air-inflated balloons and then visitors are encouraged to walk through. “It is important to me,” says Creed, “that the situation is normal, that, as usual, the space is full of air; it’s just that half of it [is] inside the balloons.”
Meant to evoke a sense of celebration and remembrance of childhood, the installation is almost guaranteed to leave everyone with a smile on their face.
Last year, Nasher Sculpture Center in Dallas was graced with 9,000 giant gold balloons that filled half of an eight-foot high gallery. To get a sense of what it feels like inside the room, Anna Merian of the Dallas Observer wrote, “People kept emerging from the balloons and startling each other — you’d feel totally alone and then suddenly, a face would come looming up out of the yellowness and you’d smile sheepishly at each other, then go back to flailing and squealing and butterfly-stroking your way through the balloons.”
In Chicago, Creed has installed four versions of this work in neighborhoods throughout the city, choosing a different color balloon for each site. The first two installations (Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago) can be experienced through October 2nd and October 15th at the Hyde Park Art Center and Garfield Park Conservatory. In addition, this fantastically fun installation is coming to The Cleveland Museum of Art from September 30 through November 25, 2012. (via)
CONCEPTION - Part Two / Canvas Galleries, Belfast September 27 - October 11, 2012
Opening Reception: Thursday, September 27, 6.30 - 9.00 pm.
Following on from Conception Part One London in June, Darren MacPherson and Patrick Colhoun introduce the second part of a two part exhibition of work from two very different but complimentary artists. Two mediums, MacPherson’s vibrant, acid coloured figurative paintings alongside Colhoun’s dark, brooding, somewhat disturbing contemporary sculpture.
Part one in June was London, MacPherson’s base; part two is Belfast, Colhoun’s hometown.
Part one, described as ‘Art with balls’ by Cool on Demand Culture blog, showcased the work in a gritty industrial setting in South East London. The second venue will be a contemporary white cube gallery in Belfast, a city really starting to find its feet in the genre of contemporary art.
Two artists, two cities, two cultures, two mediums.
Darren MacPherson has a growing reputation as a contemporary figurative artist whose acrylic and spray paint works are bold and full of colour.
His frequent use of high key colours can be jarring, even startling to a first-time viewer. The negative space in the composition used merely to emphasise the foreground; this is the part of his work that he spends most time on, adding layer upon layer of content. Darren’s colours bounce off the canvas and his chaotic, sometimes erratic, strokes make for abstract suggestions of the male and female form.
Inclusion in prestigious events such as FLAGSTOP in Los Angeles, the inaugural Other Art Fair in London and the 2011 National Open Art Exhibition are cementing MacPherson as an artist with a growing reputation.
Patrick Colhoun is a contemporary sculptor living and working in Belfast. His irreverent approach and ever darker subject matter make for work that is anything but traditional ceramics. His use of other materials such as latex, hosiery and piercings add to the mix.
Shane Porter: Self Portrait, 2012, Earthenware, Stainless Steel, Rubber band. Photo by Chris Jones.
Clean is a series of work concerning the sterile and the sanitary within shared spaces. The work expresses my need for order and cleanliness within the home. I am interested in people’s need for the physical and mental cleaning of spaces when moving into a new home, which in turn removes any traces of previous tenants. To me, home is a space where I have both physical and mental control.
Clémence van Lunen exhibition / Galerie NeC, Hong Kong October 5 - November 18, 2012
Opening: Thursday, October 4, from 6 pm.
"Sculpture, polyglot, curious and on the alert, fascinated by the countries which she has discovered, cultures and languages which she practises and likes, Clémence Van Lunen is a renaissance woman. She develops multiple works which could be defined as high curiosity in the same sense we sometimes describe ancient amateurs cabinet, but in her case it is in an eclectic and knowledgable way. The art critic and exhibition curator Frédéric Bodet wrote about her work, "rare forms are expressed with an indecisive act, dedicated to the enjoyment as much as to the dismay that she constantly tries to disturb us, her sculptures evoke a sort of sympathy which makes you stop and hesitate." Her invitation to Sèvres in 2007 - that allowed me to get to know her better - stood out as an evidence, as a necessary stage for her after her travels a round the world and her research in ceramics.
On her return from one of her regular travels to China, she proposed at Cité de la céramique a universe of porcelain dragons (she chose on purpose the most symbolic animal of China), with the determination to produce them all herself with an never before used experimental mixture of porcelain pastas from our mill.
Compositions of a series of porcelain elements turned, deformed then wrapped up, gathered in an experimental way and delicately assembled, the monumental sculptures required the traditional techniques of production but, however, adapted in a personal and creative way. She then imagined an centre piece , consisting of several elements of biscuit which was built up of a small «archipelago» on a table, like so many islands with strange plants; it was an invitation to a new journey!
Her experience at la Cité de la céramique illustrates perfectly its capacity to create a gateway, to imagine formal round trips, cultural and aesthetic juxtapositions, which are her trademark and her talent.”
David Caméo, Director of Sèvres, Cité de la Ceramique France
Opening Reception: Friday, September 14, 5:30 - 8:30 pm.
Art on the Avenue Gallery, at 3808 Lancaster Avenue, is pleased to present Arina Ailincăi: IN-SCRIPTED BODY, a solo sculpture exhibition featuring recent works in clay of this noteworthy international artist.
Arina Ailincăi is a truly international artist. Raised and educated in Romania, she began her artistic career in Eastern Europe. In the 1980s she crossed the Atlantic and settled in Canada, where she was soon acknowledged as one of its most talented artists working in clay. At that time she also exhibited and lectured in the United States. Over the last several years, she has been invited to work, exhibit and lecture at major ceramic art centers and international events throughout Europe, including Denmark, Estonia, Latvia, France, Italy, Germany, Switzerland, Hungary, Romania, Croatia and Turkey. Most recently she has held residencies in China, Taiwan, Japan and South Korea.
Arina Ailincăi’s art focuses on the human figure, with the body cast using real bodies - often her own. The closeresemblance of the ceramic sculpture to the actual body is only a starting point for her deeper exploration of the universal human condition as an embodied self. Ailincai’s sculptures in clay are philosophically and metaphorically charged. The markings on the outer surface and the mysterious inscriptions in the hollow interior of the body transform the replica of a particular individual into an archetypal human vessel, holding the traces of inner life, time, place and history.
"My desire is to “write” a three dimensional poem to both the fragile physical body and the intangible world of our inner existence. I translate this desire into ceramic sculpture through the use of faithfully replicated, life-size clay body-casts and fragments. I press the clay into the plaster mold to create ”the shell," a hollowed out body shape: an empty vessel containing the inner self, with its personal and universal history. The scripts imprinted on the interior walls of the shell, acquire symbolic and metaphoric dimensions, becoming a palimpsest of the entire human existence. While most of my works are made in clay, I make use of other materials and techniques, often combining drawing and photography in my installations. I want to synthesize two-dimensional and three-dimensional vocabularies into a visual language charged with meaning, which directs the viewers to sense their location, both within and without.” Arina Ailincăi
Parasol unit foundation for contemporary art is delighted to present works by Bharti Kher in her first solo exhibition held in a public art institution in London. The exhibition is composed of a selection of works from the recent past, with an emphasis on the artist’s sculptural works.
Known for her extensive use of everyday, found objects and imaginatively transforming their identity, Kher empowers her often otherworldly creations to present themselves unabashedly as if they were a natural part of our culture and environment. Kher’s work often explores the notion of the self as a multiple, open to interpretation and shape-shifting. Her art practice is intimately intertwined with her life, not only because she borrows motifs and artifacts for her work, but also because she has an inquisitive mind and a strong desire to understand sociological issues. Such characteristics endow Kher’s work with a narrative quality and fascinating interiority of things that frequently contradict her practice of addressing more global and collective concerns. This tension is precisely what leads us more deeply into Kher’s work and world and prompts us to reposition our own relationship to her individual pieces.
Kher is perhaps best known for her elaborate and stunning bindi dot paintings: abstract, swirling constellations of colourful bindis glued to flat surfaces that create unique imagery somewhere between being illusory and hyper-realistic. But in recent years her artistic creations have become increasingly bold and unrestrained, several examples of which are on show in the exhibition. The phenomenal, life-size elephant that is The skin speaks a language not its own, 2006, made of fibreglass and covered with serpent - or sperm-shaped white bindis, bears a symbolism that leaves viewers uncertain about the animal’s condition. The title of the work, always an important component of Kher’s works, suggests that physical appearance and inner values are often in conflict.
Rosemarie Trockel: A Cosmos / NEW MUSEUM, New York October 24, 2012 - January 13, 2013
Co-curated by Rosemarie Trockel and Lynne Cooke for the Museo Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, “Rosemarie Trockel: A Cosmos”—encompassing all three main gallery floors of the New Museum building on the Bowery—will present a world shaped by Trockel’s ideas, interests, and affinities. Instead of a traditional retrospective, this exhibition takes the form of an artistic self-portrait in which Trockel’s work shares space with objects that have influenced her thinking and her practice. Spanning different eras and cultures, “A Cosmos” brings together objects from disparate fields to compose a cartography of Trockel’s influences.
Since the early 1970s, Rosemarie Trockel has produced an impressive body of work that includes drawing, collage, installation, “knit paintings,” ceramics, videos, furniture, clothing, and books. She brings together a range of associations and references from art history, philosophy, theology, and the natural sciences. For “A Cosmos,” the dense field of Trockel’s influences will be articulated in installations that illuminate the intellectual and formal connections between her practice and that of a range of historical figures including self-taught artists James Castle and Morton Bartlett, and the botanist/mathematician José Celestino Mutis. Objects whose impetus was primarily aesthetic will be juxtaposed with pieces that more conventionally belong to the realm of science. Trockel’s roughhewn glazed ceramics from the past several years will be displayed in conjunction with Leopold and Rudolph Blaschka’s delicate glass models of sea creatures created in the nineteenth century. A selection of new drawings by Trockel can be examined along with watercolors by the seventeenth-century artist Maria Sybilla Merian, whose impeccably precise yet beautiful renderings of flora and fauna proved invaluable to scientific study.
Trockel’s well-known disregard for the conventional hierarchies in the visual arts, together with her longstanding appreciation of media and materials once categorized as crafts or vernacular art forms, is demonstrated throughout the exhibition. She has adopted a fluid and radical approach to gender, combining activities typically considered feminine in terms of production with aggressive mechanical and industrial forms. This facet of her practice is emphasized through the inclusion of Judith Scott’s obsessively wrapped yarn sculptures alongside Ruth Francken’s plastic and metal assemblages from the 1970s. In addition, Trockel’s celebrated “knit paintings” will be integrated into the exhibition, along with new works made of glass.
Rosemarie Trockel was born in 1952 in Schwerte, Germany. She studied at the Kölner Werkschulen in Cologne, Germany. Since 1998, she has been a professor at the Staatliche Kunstakademie Düsseldorf. She lives and works in Cologne.
Scandinavian Design, drawn from the MFAH collection of decorative arts, showcases furniture, glass, ceramics, metalwork, and lighting from the 1920s to the 1970s. The MFAH first acquired examples of modern Finnish glass in 1954, and in recent years the museum has built on this history by acquiring outstanding objects by architects, designers and manufacturers such as Georg Jensen, Orrefors, Alvar Aalto, Bruno Mathsson, Kaj Franck, Timo Sarpaneva, Tapio Wirkkala, Poul Henningsen, Finn Juhl and Verner Panton.
The objects created by designers active in Denmark, Finland, Sweden and Norway during the 20th century embody a distinctive aesthetic typified by an emphasis on high-quality design distributed widely through mass production. Often Minimalist, and characterized by clean lines, the Scandinavian design movement originated with a 1950s design show that traveled to the United States and Canada to showcase Nordic designers and the “Scandinavian way of living.” Scandinavian design influenced the development of Modernism in North America and Europe, and it continues to shape decorative arts today.
This exhibition is organized by the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. Generous funding is provided by Dr. Marjorie G. Horning.
Entrance to this exhibition is included with the museum admission. MFAH Members receive free general admission.
Gustaf Nordenskiöld exhibition / Galerie NeC, Hong Kong August 24 - September 29, 2012
Opening: Thursday, August 23, from 6 pm.
Gustaf Nordenskiölds ceramic work deals with issues about functionality, primitivism, natural forces, and perceptible method. He is exploring the field between design, crafts, arts and industrial production.
The exhibition consists of new museum collections, post production, the assembly of pre-existing and newly manufactured items, and works transformed to form new en-sembles. The exhibition presents ambivalent ceramic works, virgin archaeological objects of unknown origin that expresses beauty in the making, or in disrepair.
"My intention is to create works in which the methods are a prerequisite for the final result, where traces of the process remains in the finished work. To freeze a moment for posterity. To preserve and display an action. What is worth preserving? Methods where the finished objects conveys trace of effort, different movement patterns or natural deformation/formation.” Traces, as a memory of its creation, Gustaf Nordenskiöld, 2012.
In partnership with the Consulate General of Sweden, Hong Kong.
Gallery Hours: Monday to Saturday, 11 am - 8 pm. Sunday, 1 - 6 pm.
Change, an innovative title that wants to send a strong message about the communicative potential of ceramics in contemporary art world. The objective is clear: it is Castellamonte, the city of stoves, together with the furnace Pagliero, the oldest factory in the suburb wisely restored by owner Daniel Chechi, now a center avant-garde cultural production and to send a new message on the potential and the language of contemporary ceramics. A spirit of continuity with the past, but also breaking, where twelve artists invited to exhibit created specific works of great communicative power, which are fully included in the Olympus of contemporary art.
The artists, selected as the most important names in art pottery, have identified a specific site within the architectural splendor of the furnace, creating the appropriate specific interventions designed for the site.
A separate section is devoted to the potter Savona Sandro Lorenzini, the author appreciated not only in Europe, which has made almost all the works shown in the Furnace Pagliero, invited by Daniele Chechi as an “artist in residence”.
The show joins “The metaphysical dream” by Giorgio de Chirico and Lisa Sotilis and “Figures of fire” by Bernard Aubertin, Elio Torrieri, Lilian Rita Callegari, and Umberto Mastroianni. A complex work, supported by the critical point of view by the Director of the International Museum of Applied Arts Today MIAAO, Enzo Biffi Gentili.