Artists pull out of the 18th Sydney Biennale

“………The five Australian and international artists – Libia Castro, Ólafur Ólafsson, Charlie Sofo, Gabrielle de Vietri and Ahmet Ögüt – said in a statement they were withdrawing from the Biennale “in light of Transfield’s expanding management of Manus Island and Nauru immigration detention centres” and in response to the death of Mr Berati.

“We have revoked our works, cancelled our public events and relinquished our artists’ fees,” the statement said.

“We see our participation in the Biennale as an active link in a chain of associations that leads to the abuse of human rights. For us, this is undeniable and indefensible.”

A larger group of artists wrote to the Biennale board last week, demanding it sever ties with Transfield Holdings.

The five boycotting artists claim the board and Transfield indicated “there will be no movement on their involvement in this issue … that the issue is too complex, and that the financial agreements are too important to re-negotiate”.

The artists asked the Biennale of Sydney to acknowledge the protest by registering their withdrawal on its website and displaying signs at the site of the four absent projects. Two of the artists had submitted a joint work.

“In the pervasive silence that the government enforces around this issue, we will not let this action be unnoticed,” the artists said……..”.

Extract courtesy SMH

Read the full story and more here here and here

Lichtenstein Retrospective at the TATE Gallery

lichtenstein_web-banner

A major retrospective of the works of Roy Lichtenstein opens at the TATE Modern Gallery and runs from 21 February – 27 May 2013.

The opening header for the show from the TATE reads……..

“Tate Modern is proud to present a retrospective of one of the great American artists of the twentieth century.

Lichtenstein: A Retrospective is the first full-scale retrospective of this important artist in over twenty years. Co-organised by The Art Institute of Chicago and Tate Modern, this momentous show brings together 125 of his most definitive paintings and sculptures and will reassess his enduring legacy.

Lichtenstein is renowned for his works based on comic strips and advertising imagery, coloured with his signature hand-painted Benday dots. The exhibition showcases such key paintings as Look Mickey 1961 lent from the National Gallery Art, Washington and his monumental Artist’s Studio series of 1973–4. Other noteworthy highlights include Whaam! 1963 – a signature work in Tate’s collection – and Drowning Girl 1963 on loan from the Museum of Modern Art, New York.

The artist’s rich and expansive practice will be represented by a wide range of materials, including paintings on Rowlux and steel, as well sculptures in ceramic and brass and a selection of previously unseen drawings, collages and works on paper.”  sourced @ http://www.tate.org.uk/whats-on/tate-modern/exhibition/lichtenstein.

For teachers of Stage Six (Yrs 11 & 12) HSC NSW a Case Study on the artist is available at STAGESIX

Anthony Gormley | “Model”

(Reuters) – Britain’s foremost living sculptor Antony Gormley wants us to get inside his head with his latest work “Model”, a 100-tonne steel maze of cubes and squares, dark corners and splashes of light on show at the White Cube gallery in London.

The giant grey-black work, based on a human form lying down, is entered via the right “foot”, and combines the fun of an adventure playground with the unnerving quality of a labyrinth often plunged into darkness.

For the first time, the Turner Prize-winning artist who has always been preoccupied with the human form allows us to get inside, and draws parallels between the body and the architectural spaces we inhabit.

“I think we dwell first in this borrowed bit of the material world that we call the body,” Gormley told Reuters, standing beside the imposing structure made up of interlocking blocks.

“It has its own life that is unknowable. But the second place we dwell is the body of architecture, the built environment,” he added.

“We’re the most extraordinary species that decided to structure our habitat according to very, very abstract principles of horizontal and vertical planes.”

Model has plenty of surprises. The more nimble visitor can crawl through its left “arm”, which is a passage around three feet high, or clamber on to a roof bathed in light.

“There are places that you wouldn’t necessarily know are there,” Gormley said. As if to prove his point, he disappeared into a large raised “aperture” invisible in the darkness.

Sound also plays a part, with the resonance of voices and rumble of footsteps giving clues to the size of each space.”

Full story

image and text courtesy Reuters.com

Judy Chicago: Deflowered

Judy Chicago: Deflowered

The American feminist artist Judy Chicago, who is best known for The Dinner Party, 1974-79, an installation of 39 dinner place settings for mythical and historical women, returns to London for the first time in more than 20 years to show her work at the Riflemaker Gallery (13 November-22 December) and the Ben Uri Gallery (14 November-10 March 2013), her first UK museum show. Chicago’s early works on paper will occupy Riflemaker’s three floors, as well as the acrylic work Birth Hood, 1965, and pieces from The Dinner Party. “We wanted to explore Chicago’s influence on contemporary art,” says Tot Taylor, the gallery’s director.

“At a time where one of the dominant influences in contemporary practice appears to be art created ‘from a female perspective’ it might be said that Judy Chicago built on the work which had been done by Georgia O’Keeffe and Louise Bourgeois”

Full article @ The Art Newspaper

image courtesy of Riflemaker Gallery

Ai Weiwei: Art / Architecture at Kunsthaus Bregenz

“The Kunsthaus in Bregenz / Austria explores the architectural work of Ai Weiwei with a solo show titled Art / Architecture. While not as widely presented as his artistic oeuvre, Ai Weiwei’s work in the field of architecture is extremely important for the artist because of the collaborative – that is social and political – aspect of it.

On three floors of architect Peter Zumthor’s Kunsthaus building, the exhibition focuses on Ai Weiwei’s collaborative architecture projects such as the Beijing National Stadium (known colloquially as the Bird’s Nest), developed in collaboration with the Pritzker price winning architects Herzog & de Meuron, but also numerous projects with lesser known architects.”@ Vernissage TV

 

Read more here

Yung Ho Chang @ UCCA and Che Guevara @ Three Shadows, Beijing (China)

“In Beijing’s 798 Art Zone, Ullens Center for Contemporary Art (UCCA) presents ‘Yung Ho Chang + FCJZ: Material-ism’, the first retrospective of the pioneer of contemporary Chinese architecture. UCCA shows over 6 installations, 40 models and 270 drawings charting the cross-disciplinary work of Yung Ho Chang and his practice Feichang Jianzhu (FCJZ). Chang and FCJZ transform the UCCA Great Hall into six courtyard-like modules inspired by the ‘hutong’, the traditional Chinese neighbourhood network of narrow alleys between tile-roofed courtyard houses.” Vernissage TV

 

Read the full story here

@ Tate Modern | A Bigger Splash: Painting after Performance

“When painting’s enduring relevance is debated, performance art is often pitched as its polar opposite: one a venerable, hallowed tradition of object making, the other its provocative, ephemeral nemesis.

But Tate Modern’s new show explores a long history of interaction between them that has led to a fertile strand of contemporary art.

“Quite a lot of artists have a painting practice that only comes about because of an engagement with performance,” says Catherine Wood, the Tate’s curator of contemporary art and performance.”  Read the full article here

sourced @ The Art Newspaper

Painting meets performance: Helena Almeida’s Inhabited Painting, 1975

New art district | Argentina

“The Cuban artist collective Los Carpinteros is showing three large-scale installations at Buenos Aires’s Faena Arts Centre in May. They have created a new site-specific sculpture especially for the arts centre’s 700 sq ft “Sala Molinos” exhibition space and are also installing two earlier works—a Piper Comanche single-prop plane pierced by arrows and a sprawling shantytown neighbourhood built entirely from corrugated cardboard. The exhibition, which runs from 17 May to 1 August, is the second such commission for the two-year-old kunsthalle after Ernesto Neto’s enormous hanging sculpture O bicho suspenso na paisagen in 2011. Neto’s work was funded as part of the centre’s Faena Arts Prize, Latin America’s biggest award for visual artists, which has its second edition this year.” Read more.

The Art Newspaper

ArtExpress at the AGNSW

I was at the AGNSW leg of the 2011 ArtExpress exhibition recently and had the opportunity to snap a few images on my phone. Any art teacher here in NSW knows what this is about and should be deservedly proud that senior high school students have the opportunity to have their talents nurtured by such a group of committed educators. For anyone from outside NSW see my post at Adobe Education Leaders for a fuller explanation of the selection process. Of course it’s wise to remember that the curatorial decisions of the various galleries are just that and may not necessarily represent the best of the pool of works put aside for the curatorial teams.

On another note, the show at the Armory Gallery at Newington is the biggest of the exhibitions with Bodies of Work from over 60 students on display. I saw the show last week and it’s truly worth the visit. The Armory show is themed around representations of the landscape and as usual there’s some extraordinary work there. The students, their parents and teachers are no doubt justifiably proud.

Small faculty promowe have 3 students from Wyndham College in that show and one at AGNSW

These exhibitions speak highly of the quality of art education in NSW.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

See the full selection of works from the Art Gallery of NSW

I’ll be posting slide-shows from other venues in the coming weeks.