- The Seattle Art Museum showcases "Gauguin and Polynesia: An Elusive Paradise"
- The SUArt Galleries Shows Print Artwork Published by Universal Limited Art Editions
- Christie's New York to offer Prints & Multiples: A Range of Style the Summer Sale
- Royal Academy of Arts announces Exhibition by Utagawa Kuniyoshi (1797 – 1861)
- British Artist Damien Hirst Presents New Paintings at the Wallace Collection
- The South Bend Museum of Art to Show "Adrian Hatfield ~ King of the Impossible"
- Merce Cunningham, One of the Greatest American Dancers & Choreographers ~ Dies at 90
- Special Sightseeing Offer ~ Discover Copenhagen's Cultural Oasis
- The Contemporary Jewish Museum to Show "Do Not Destroy: Trees, Art, and Jewish Thought"
- Philadelphia Museum of Art Exhibits Hans Burkhardt Painting "Burial of Gorky"
- BGL Collective at the Koffler Gallery
- The Kalamazoo Institute of Arts opens "Birds of a Feather ~ John Costin & John James Audubon"
- The Speed Art Museum Showcases Modern French Masters from the Dixon Gallery & Gardens Collection
- The Oklahoma City Museum of Art Features Its Dale Chihuly Glass Collection
- "A" is for Aivazovsky as Bonhams Russian Sale Boasts a Cyrillic Who's Who
- UK's White Cube opens Hong Kong gallery in pursuit of China's Booming Art Market
- Museum Tinguely features Eccentric & Bizarre Collection of Ted Scapa
- Art Knowledge News Presents "This Week In Review"
Posted: 29 May 2012 06:32 PM PDT
Seattle, Washington.- The Seattle Art Museum (SAM) is proud to present the only United States stop for "Gauguin and Polynesia: An Elusive Paradise", a landmark show highlighting the complex relationship between Paul Gauguin's work and the art and culture of Polynesia. The exhibition, on view through April 29th, includes about 50 of Gauguin's brilliantly hued paintings, sculptures and works on paper, which are displayed alongside 60 major examples of forceful Polynesian sculpture. Organized by the Art Centre Basel the show is comprised of works on loan from some of the world's most prestigious museums and private collections.
Recognized for his distinctive palette and the evocative symbolism of his subject matter, Paul Gauguin (1848–1903) is one of the most influential and celebrated artists of the late nineteenth century and was a leader in the Post-Impressionist movement that rejected Impressionism's emphasis on visual observation. Along with Vincent van Gogh, Emile Bernard and others, Gauguin sought to bring timelessness and poetry into painting. From very early in his career, Gauguin yearned for the exotic in both his life and his work, leading to two significant sojourns in French Polynesia – a two-year stay in Tahiti beginning in 1891 and a second trip to Tahiti, and later, to the even more remote Marquesas Islands. Gauguin and Polynesia aims to contribute not only to a deeper understanding of Gauguin's work, but also to further an understanding of Polynesian culture. Gauguin and Polynesia traces Gauguin's journey from bourgeois stockbroker to full-time artist, while at the same time tracing Polynesia's artistic evolution during the 18th and 19th centuries.
Paul Gauguin's biography reveals a complicated personal journey. Born June 7, 1848, to Clovis and Aline Gauguin, the yearning for adventure was likely fueled by an early experience in Peru. In 1849, the Gauguin family left Napoleonic France due to a political climate hostile to the liberal leanings of Gauguin's journalist-father. En route to Peru, Clovis died of a heart attack, leaving Aline and their two children to complete the journey alone. Returning to France in 1857, Aline Gauguin struggled to support her children, and Paul was eventually enrolled in a prestigious boarding school in Orléans. At the age of 17, the young man joined the merchant marines and, later, the French Navy, in positions that would take him around the world. He eventually settled into a position as a stockbroker in Paris, where he met and married a young Danish woman named Mette Sophie Gad and had five children in quick succession. Gauguin showed an interest in painting, and collected art in the 1870s, but it was with the collapse of the stock market in 1882 that he decided to pursue his own career as an artist. Gauguin and Polynesia opens with a look at early paintings and sculptures Gauguin created in the late 1880s when he lived in Brittany. Through his life in Brittany and a five-month trip to the Caribbean island of Martinique, Gauguin sought a less costly and simpler lifestyle to fuel his artistic practice. Rejecting the Impressionists' focus on momentary observation, Gauguin sought to impart a decorative timelessness through the "primitive" people and places he encountered both in the Caribbean and in rural France. It was during this period that Paul Gauguin developed a short-lived working relationship with Vincent van Gogh which would help define the direction Gauguin's life and art would take from the 1890s through the end of his life. Gauguin and Polynesia includes a gallery of Polynesian sculptures similar to those that Gauguin would have seen at the World's Fair.
This brief exposure to the cultures of French Polynesia as well as that of other European colonies, notably Cambodia and Java, provided Gauguin with the final nudge he needed to pursue his idea of creating a Studio of the Tropics, where he and other artists could live and work without the constraints of financial hardship or the formality of life in Western Europe. Very shortly after the Fair, he made several unsuccessful attempts to secure government posts in present-day Vietnam and Madagascar before he successfully received a grant to visit Tahiti, and he left France on April 1, 1891. When Gauguin arrived in Papeete, Tahiti in June 1891, he expected to find himself immersed in a "voluptuous" culture, a paradise of gentle populations set in nature's abundance. In fact, what he found was a local culture that had been in decline for more than a century, due to disease, famine, warfare and a prohibition on traditional art forms enforced by the Catholic Church, along with the difficult dealings of a colonial bureaucracy much like that he had left behind in France. Deeply disappointed at finding so much of what he had sought to escape and so little of the paradise he had expected, Gauguin enacted his own, restless search for Polynesian art, and introduced his imperfect notions of Polynesian religion and culture into the works of art he sent back to Europe.
The exhibition includes numerous paintings in which Gauguin created the environment he had hoped to find. A motif from a small set of Marquesan ear ornaments, for example becomes a fence keeping viewers from entering a sacred precinct in Parahi te Marae (The Sacred Mountain), (1892), where a tiki is installed on a Tahitian hillside where heightened colors prevail. Gauguin and Polynesia includes specific Polynesian art alongside Gauguin's unique permutations of their imagery and meaning, allowing a more fully informed investigation of the tension between Gauguin's representations and the true evolution of the Polynesian cultures in which he lived. Gauguin and Polynesia comes to SAM after opening at the Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek in Copenhagen (September 24– December 31, 2011). The exhibition was curated by Suzanne Greub, and organized by the Art Centre Basel in collaboration with the Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek in Copenhagen and the Seattle Art Museum in Seattle, WA, USA. Curators in Seattle are Chiyo Ishikawa, Susan Brotman Deputy Director for Art and Curator of European Painting & Sculpture, and Pam McClusky, Curator of Art of Africa & Oceania at SAM.
The Seattle Art Museum (SAM) maintains three major facilities: its main museum in downtown Seattle; the Seattle Asian Art Museum (SAAM) in Volunteer Park on Capitol Hill, and the Olympic Sculpture Park on the central Seattle waterfront, which opened on January 20, 2007. The SAM collection has grown from 1,926 pieces in 1933 to nearly 25,000 as of 2008. Its original museum provided an area of 25,000 square feet, the present facilities provide 312,000 square feet plus a 9-acre park. SAM traces its origins to the Seattle Fine Arts Society (organized 1905) and the Washington Arts Association (organized 1906), which merged in 1917, keeping the Fine Arts Society name. In 1931 the group renamed itself as the Art Institute of Seattle. The Art Institute collection formed the core of the original SAM collection and the institute was responsible for managing art activities when the museum first opened. The SAM collection includes approximately 25,000 pieces. Among them are Alexander Calder's "Eagle" (1971) and Richard Serra's "Wake" (2004), both at the Olympic Sculpture Park; Cai Guo-Qiang's "Inopportune: Stage One" (2004), a sculpture constructed from cars and sequenced multi-channel light tubes on display in the lobby of the SAM Downtown; "The Judgment of Paris" (c. 1516-18) by Lucas Cranach the Elder; Mark Tobey's "Electric Night" (1944); Yéil X'eenh (Raven Screen) (c. 1810), attributed to the Tlingit artist Kadyisdu.axch'; Do-Ho Suh's "Some/One" (2001); and a coffin in the shape of a Mercedes Benz (1991) by Kane Quaye of Ghana. There are early Italian paintings by Dalmasio Scannabecchi, Puccio di Simone, Giovanni di Paolo, Luca Di Tomme, Bartolomeo Vivarini, and Paolo Uccello. There are paintings by V. Sellaer, Jan Molenaer, Emanuel De Witte, Luca Giordano, Luca Carlevaris, Armand Guillaumin, and Camille Pissarro. This museum also has a large collection of Twentieth Century American paintings by Jacob Lawrence and Mark Tobey. There is an appreciable collection of Aboriginal Australian Art. Visit the museum's website at ... http://www.seattleartmuseum.org/
Posted: 29 May 2012 06:31 PM PDT
Syracuse, New York. The Syracuse University Art Galleries (SUArt) is proud to present "Pressing Print: Universal Limited Art Editions 2000-2010", on view from February 2nd through March 18th. The exhibition chronicles the recent decade of artwork published by the renowned American printmaking workshop Universal Limited Art Editions [ULAE]. The exhibition assembles new print works created by the 20th century masters of American Art (Jasper Johns, Robert Rauschenberg and Helen Frankenthaler) and emerging artists recently selected to collaborate at Universal (Zachary Wollard, Amy Cutler and Tam Van Tran). More than just a survey of artwork published since 2000, Pressing Print is a specific examination of ULAE's ongoing commitment to innovative approaches and techniques in contemporary printmaking.
Posted: 29 May 2012 06:29 PM PDT
NEW YORK, NY.- Christie's presents the mid-season Prints & Multiples sale on July 22. Comprised of a cross section of movements and styles, this well selected offering includes work by James Jacques, Joseph Tissot, James Abbott McNeill Whistler, Paul Gauguin, Joan Miró, Sam Francis, Robert Indiana, Roy Lichtenstein, Jeff Koons, Ed Ruscha and Rachel Whiteread, among others. This sale is the ideal opportunity to begin or expand collections for new bidders and seasoned print enthusiasts alike. A broad selection of Pop and abstract art complete the Prints & Multiples sale. A unique example is A Dedicated Follower of Fashion (estimate: $3,000-5,000) by Richard Hamilton, a founder of the Pop movement in Britain.
Posted: 29 May 2012 06:28 PM PDT
LONDON - The Royal Academy of Arts will present an exhibition on one of the greatest Japanese print artists, Utagawa Kuniyoshi (1797 – 1861). Featuring over 150 works, the exhibition will present Kuniyoshi as a master of imaginative design. It will reveal the graphic power and beauty of his prints across an unprecedented range of subjects highlighting his ingenuous use of the triptych format. The majority of the exhibition will be drawn from the outstanding collection of Professor Arthur R. Miller which has recently been donated to the American Friends of the British Museum. This is the first major exhibition in the United Kingdom on Utagawa Kuniyoshi since 1961, on view 21 March through 7 June, 2009.
Kuniyoshi was a major master of the 'floating world', or Ukiyo-e school of Japanese art, and, together with Katsushika Hokusai (1760 – 1849), Utagawa Hiroshige (1797 – 1858) and Utagawa Kunisada (1786 – 1864), dominated nineteenth century printmaking in Japan. Prolific and multitalented, Kuniyoshi considerably expanded the existing repertoire of the school, particularly with thousands of designs that brought vividly to life famous military exploits in Japan and China. He portrayed historic heroes of Japan's warrior past and brigands from the Chinese adventure story The Water Margin giving dramatic pictorial expression to the great myths and legends that had accrued around them.
(b. Edo, 1797; d. Edo, 1861). Painter, woodblock print designer and book illustrator. He was born into the urban artisan class of Edo (Edokko), the son of a silk dyer. As a child he showed a flair for drawing. Biographies mention his boyhood fascination for picture books by KITAO SHIGEMASA and Kitao Masayoshi (1764–1824) and his contact with the works of Katsukawa Shun'ei and Katsukawa Shuntei (1770–1820). Kuniyoshi's formal training took place from 1811 to 1814, when he was apprenticed to Toyokuni I, from whom he learnt the Utagawa style of yakushae ('pictures of actors') and bijinga ('pictures of beautiful women').
Kuniyoshi's images of heroes, with which he made his name, constitute the most important part of his artistic output. However, censorship regulations frequently required him to displace events of recent centuries to a more distant fictionalised past. Kuniyoshi developed an extraordinarily powerful and imaginative style in his prints, often spreading a scene dynamically across all three sheets of the traditional triptych format and linking the composition with one bold unifying element - a major artistic innovation.
Kuniyoshi was also very active in the other major subjects and genres of floating world art: prints of beautiful women, Kabuki actors, landscapes, comic themes, erotica and commissioned paintings. In each of these he was experimental, imaginative and distinctly different from his contemporaries. For example, he transformed the genre of landscape prints by incorporating Western conventions, such as cast shadows and innovative applications of perspective. This departure from tradition is an indication of his independent artistic spirit.
The exhibition will be divided into six sections beginning with 'Kuniyoshi's Imagination' which presents the range of the artist's repertoire and his unique treatment. Then there follow more indepth selections: warriors, landscapes, beauties, theatre and humour. Highlights will include rare original brush drawings and a woodblock, a selection of extraordinary dynamic triptych prints and one of the only known examples of a set of twelve comic erotic prints.
The exhibition will include works from the American Friends of the British Museum (The Arthur R. Miller Collection), the British Museum, the Victoria and Albert Museum, the National Museum of Scotland, the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge and private collections in Japan and USA.
Kuniyoshi is the third exhibition in a series dedicated to Japanese Artists and Printmakers to be held at the Royal Academy of Arts. The previous exhibitions have been Hokusai (1991-92) and Hiroshige: Images of Mist, Rain, Moon and Snow (1997).
Visit the Royal Academy of Arts at : http://www.royalacademy.org.uk/
Posted: 29 May 2012 06:18 PM PDT
LONDON (REUTERS).- British artist Damien Hirst has made a reputation, and sizeable fortune, from suspending animals in formaldehyde and filling medicine cabinets with pills. Now one of the world's most successful living artists has returned to more traditional territory of painting, and this time, unlike his mass-produced canvases covered in colored spots, the 44-year-old actually executed them himself. Hirst has displayed 25 new paintings, mostly featuring white skulls on blue-black backgrounds, at London's Wallace Collection, a family collection of old masters housed in gilded, silk-walled opulence. The exhibition runs from October 14 to January 24, 2010.
Posted: 29 May 2012 06:16 PM PDT
South Bend, Indiana.- The South Bend Museum of Art is pleased to present "Adrian Hatfield: King of the Impossible" on view at the museum from December 17th through February 26th 2012. Hatfield's multi-media work examines the modes of visual communication developed within religion, science and fine art and the role they play in humanity's attempt to understand itself and its place in the universe. The large-scale piece, KT and The Second Coming, is a metaphorical depiction of the moment the KT asteroid, which caused the mass extinction ending the reign of the dinosaurs, struck the earth. The artist invites viewers to enter a world via fantastical imagery, reminiscent of Sci-fi illustration, wherein Godzilla meets the Hudson River School of grandiose landscape. "My recent work examines the modes of visual communication developed within religion, science and fine art in order to answer seemingly unanswerable questions. It highlights the beauty and absurdity of the human compulsion to assign meaning to "life" and the greater universe, as well as the impossibility of attaining a complete understanding of the world. Central to this is the way science's visual language endeavors to make huge amounts of information digestible, creating the illusion of a more complete understanding of the subjects than actually exists.
This has parallels within religion as well as nineteenth-century Romantic landscape paintings in the exploration of vast and mysterious subject matter in an attempt to address sublime subjects and reduce them to a more manageable scale. The presence of pop culture references such as Godzilla and Freddie Mercury in my work challenges the accepted hierarchy in visual culture and examines the way lowbrow figures are imbued with meaning. An example of this is how Godzilla, a man in a rubber monster costume, can simultaneously exist as a popular B-movie icon, a complex symbol of the U.S./Japan political relationship, and as a metaphor for the destructive potential of nature and nuclear power. I am not suggesting that science, religion, fine art and pop culture are equivalent. Rather, I am interested in how the aspect of human nature that yearns for meaning, comprehension and control affects the development and function these disciplines. This sometimes causes a blurring where one or more of these areas begin tooperate in a way traditionally reserved for another." The title of the exhibition, King of the Impossible, is, according to the artist, "a reference to a lyric Freddie Mercury sings in the Queen song "Flash Gordon". I think it hits on a number of elements in this body of work including Freddie Mercury, space, God and questions of His nature/existence. It also seems to capture my "tongue in cheek but not kidding" was of approaching these vast subjects." Adrian Hatfield received his M.F.A. from Ohio University in 2003 and has been Assistant Professor of Painting at Wayne State University since 2005. He has been showing his work both nationally and internationally for almost 10 years. Recently, he was invited to take part in the NES Artist Residency in Skagastrond, Iceland.
The South Bend Museum of Art affirms the enduring power of the visual arts to reflect and create community, engage minds, and nurture growth through exhibitions, collections and educational programs. Since its founding in 1947, the SBMA has provided insight into the art, history and culture of the region and nation. Since 1987, the museum has been accredited by the American Association of Museums, which recognizes that it has achieved the highest levels of professional standards. Located inside the Century Center, the SBMA is an architectural delight. Designed by Philip Johnson and John Burgee, the museum occupies three levels in the northern wing of the building. A full spectrum of historical and contemporary art is featured in six galleries, and a wide-range of artistic traditions are taught in their world-class art studios. The Permanent Collection of the South Bend Museum of Art presents over 60 years of acquisition. The collection features the work of historical Indiana artists, and significant contemporary regional artists, which makes it a unique collection for the community it serves.
The collection grew out of a community based creation called the South Bend Art Association, founded in 1947. The "Hoosier Group" were among important artists featured by this organization, and spurred interest in the visual arts in the area. The collection was founded by an initial gift from Mr. and Mrs. E. M. Morris, and continued to grow through purchases, gifts and donations. Artists included in this initial gift of the Morris's include William Forsyth, Clifton Wheeler, Daniel Garber, Theodore Clement Steele, Karl Bradner, and George Jo Mess. Included in the collection of regional art are works by early Indiana Impressionist painters, also called the Hoosier School, or Brown County School. Some of these artists include T. C. Steele, Frank Dudley, George Ames Aldrich, Clarence Ball, and Alexis Fournier. A long term loan from the Snite Museum of Art at the University of Notre Dame features approximately 30 paintings by some of these historical Indiana artists, as well as others such as Emil Jacques, Homer Davisson, Frank Dudley, Luigi Gregori, and Ivan Mestrovic. Some of these artists were important educators at the university. Another group of works focuses on Indiana-born artists of note such as William Merritt Chase, Daniel Garber, Sam Gilliam, and Robert Indiana.
The remainder of the collection features art by nationally recognized American artists including Lynda Benglis, Thomas Hart Benton, Mark di Suvero, Audrey Flack, Robert Henri, Jacob Lawrence, Louise Nevelson, Larry Rivers, and John Storrs. A small but important group of paintings of national scope is their collection of works from the Chicago Imagists, also known as the Hairy Who. Some of these artists include Roger Brown, Ed Paschke, Gladys Nilsson, and Ray Yoshida. These nationally recognized works provide a context for the regional collection. Comparisons between trends and movements, and aesthetic considerations such as subject and media, allow for interpretation on the idea of regional style. Much of the work by nationally recognized artists are works on paper. Other stylistic periods of American art represented by the collection include late 19th century genre painting, the Ash Can School , Urban Realism, Regionalism, Pop Art, New Realism, and Photo-Realism. Acquisition of several series of prints has allowed the museum to collect some of these nationally recognized artists, and also to address socio-political work pertaining to issues of racism, feminism, and tolerance. Examples of these suites of prints include the Kent Bicentennial Portfolio: "Spirit of Independence" which includes works by Robert Indiana, Alex Katz, Jacob Lawrence, and Marisol Escobar. Another suite from this period is the Boston Massacre Portfolio featuring Larry Rivers. These prints celebrate our country's history while addressing issues of tolerance, diversity and political dissent. The 10x10: Ten Women/Ten Prints includes works by Hung Liu, Yolanda Lopez, Carrie Mae Weems, and Faith Ringold. These prints address current feminist issues and highlight works by prominent minority artists of Chinese, Latino, and African-American backgrounds. Collection activity has been sustained through several means: purchase awards for sculpture and craft biennial exhibitions as well as full-media shows; gifts and donations; the Zisla Acquisition Fund; and the General Acquisitions Fund. Visit the museum's website at ... http://southbendart.org
Posted: 29 May 2012 06:14 PM PDT
NEW YORk, NY.- Merce Cunningham, who was among the most influential choreographers of the 20th century, and was at the forefront of the American avant-garde for more than 50 years, died on Sunday night, the Merce Cunningham Dance Foundation said. He was 90. Throughout much of his life, Cunningham was also considered one of the greatest American dancers. A constant collaborator who has influenced artists across disciplines—including musicians John Cage and David Tudor, artists Robert Rauschenberg and Bruce Nauman, designer Romeo Gigli, and architect Benedetta Tagliabue—Cunningham's impact extends beyond the dance world to the arts as a whole.
Posted: 29 May 2012 06:10 PM PDT
Copenhagen, Denmark - Everyone knows money can be a bit tight after the Holidays. But that's no excuse to miss out on some of the best sights and exhibitions Copenhagen has to offer! During the entire months of January and February the Museums on Slotsholmen (the central isle of Copenhagen, dominated by the Parliament, Christiansborg) have combined resources to offer six entrances for the low price of one! For just DKK 50.00, you can now visit up to six different museums during the entire months of January and February.
Posted: 29 May 2012 06:09 PM PDT
San Francisco, California.- The Contemporary Jewish Museum is pleased to present "Do Not Destroy: Trees, Art, and Jewish Thought", an exhibition and the Dorothy Saxe invitational, on view at the museum from February 16th through May 28th. From the very first chapters of the Torah where one encounters them in the Garden of Eden, to the commandment Bal Tashchit (do not destroy) found in Deuteronomy forbidding their wanton destruction during wartime, trees occupy a particularly potent and symbolic place in Jewish literature and lore as expressions of paradise, regeneration, shelter, the bounty of the earth, longevity, and even as a precursor to the coming of the Messiah.
"Do Not Destroy: Trees, Art, and Jewish Thought", explores the role of the tree in Jewish tradition and beyond through the lens of contemporary artists, offering fresh perspectives on ritual practice and our connection to the natural world. The companion exhibitions include the continuation of The Dorothy Saxe Invitational, an exhibition series in which artists from diverse backgrounds and working in a range of media are invited to explore Jewish ritual objects (this year focusing on the holiday of Tu B'Shevat, the New Year for the Trees), as well as a selection of work examining the tree more widely in contemporary art practice by international artists including Gabriela Albergaria, Zadok Ben David, Joseph Beuys, April Gornik, Charles Labelle, Rodney Graham, Jun Nguyen-Hatsushiba, Yoko Ono, Roxy Paine, Tal Shochat, and more. The third component is the expansion of the exhibition beyond the walls of the Museum on to the Jessie Square Plaza with a commission by the San Francisco-based environmental design firm Rebar.
Building upon the Museum's long-standing tradition of asking artists from a variety of backgrounds to explore a Jewish ceremonial object, holiday, or concept within the context of their own mediums and artistic philosophy, over 50 contemporary artists from across the United States have created new works of art in response to a broad range of themes inspired by the holiday Tu B'Shevat (the New Year for the Trees). Tu B'Shevat, a minor holiday that falls in the middle of winter (this year occurring February 7-8), has become increasingly important for many Jews, especially here in the Bay Area, who have integrated faith and concern for the natural environment in a practice of environmental Tikkun Olam (making the world a better place). Originally a 2nd century holiday necessary for tithing crops to the temple, Tu B'Shevat was revived in the 16th century by mystical Kabbalists who observed the holiday with a feast of fruits in a special vegan seder that celebrated the life-giving properties of trees. In the 20th century, the meaning of the holiday shifted again as the planting of trees in Israel became crucial to inhabiting the land and gaining independence. Today, Tu B'Shevat has gained momentum with young Jews in particular who connect with Judaism through environmentalism and social justice.
For the exhibition, each participating artist was asked to incorporate reclaimed wood into their work in some way. San Francisco designer Yves Behar fashioned the first letter of the Hebrew alphabet, Aleph, from a piece of bay laurel driftwood found on the beach at Bolinas. Behar's piece is meant to suggest a reordering of our priorities. "Our awareness of nature needs to be first, like the first letter Aleph," says Behar. Colorado sculptor Yoshitomo Saito used a found aspen root as the basis for a work in bronze. Saito discovered that this iconic Colorado tree spreads through a root system that supports a colony of trees. While an individual tree may only live for 40-150 years above ground, the root system can survive for thousands of years. Says Saito, "The aspen root … represents not only the foundation of life but also means of survival and thriving of community." Also echoing this idea of endurance and its opposite, fragility, is a piece by Stanford-based artist Gail Wight who has fashioned handmade paper–a delicate and ephemeral medium–on which she has created an image of a cross section from a Devonian tree from over 400 million years ago. Luke Bartels, a member of the Woodshop collective in San Francisco's Sunset district, contributed a piece entitled The Wood Standard. The piece, a stack of wood shaped like bars of gold, questions the manner of ascribing value to particular materials over others–in this case positing trees or wood as valuable as gold. Michigan artist Lynne Avadenka took inspiration from a verse in the Book of Psalms that equates happiness, equanimity, and faith with a tree: "And he shall be like a tree planted by streams of water that brings forth fruit in its season and whose leaf will not wither." Avadenka used twigs from a fallen elm in front of her house to write out the Hebrew words of this passage, photographing them and fusing the images onto glass tiles. San Francisco artist Lisa Congdon was most interested in the symbolism associated with the Tu B'Shevat seder, and particularly the progression of four glasses of wine, from white to rose to red, that are part of the ritual feast. Made up of rows of triangles of reclaimed wood, the piece reflects on the layers of meaning she saw in the wine: "feminine to masculine, light to dark, creation and growth."
Additionally, the Museum is working with Israeli artist/designer Dov Abramson to create an installation exploring how Jewish life and the cycles of trees are intertwined. This graphic wall will take visitors through an orchard of images, ideas, and language that illuminate the Jewish relationship to trees through ancient texts, contemporary rituals, and mystical ideas. Other participating artists and designers include Gale Antokal, Tor Archer, Helène Aylon, John Bankston, Bennett Bean, Garry Knox Bennett, Terry Berlier, Harriete Estel Berman, Johanna Bresnick + Michael Cloud Hirschfeld, Jeff Canham, Topher Delaney, Kiki Probst & Joel Cammarata of SEAM Studio, Richard Deutsch, Paul Discoe, Josh Duthie, Lauren Elder, David Ellsworth, Tamar Ettun, James Gouldthorpe, Beth Grossman, Grace Hawthorne, Tobi Kahn, Lisa Kokin, Paul Kos, Naomie Kremer, Daniel Libeskind, Deborah Lozier, Ron Lutsko, Liz Mamorsky, Jane Martin, Matthew McCaslin, Tucker Nichols, Josh Owen, Lucy Puls, Amy Klein Reichert, Galya Rosenfeld, Elliot Ross, Ellen Rothenberg, Kay Sekimachi, Nancy Selvin, Cass Calder Smith, Harley Swedler, David Tomb, Merav Tzur, Ursula von Rydingsvard, Lawrence Weiner, Allan Wexler, and David Wiseman.
Presented in the "Do Not Destroy" exhibition is a selection of more than 20 works by international artists who have examined the tree–conceptually or formally–in their work in either an ongoing, almost systematic way like Rona Pondick, Roxy Paine, Zadok Ben David, April Gornik, and Gabriela Albergia or those who have investigated the tree in more discrete projects like Rodney Graham, Yuken Teruya, Yoko Ono, and Charles Labelle. The earliest work in the exhibition is documentation of Joseph Beuys' 7,000 Eichen (7,000 Oaks). Beuys dedicated much of his artistic career in the 1960s and 70s to broadening the definition of art to include social activism, created a lasting significant public arts project–the realization of the planting of 7,000 oak trees in the city of Kassel, Germany that was inaugurated at the international art fair documenta 7 in 1982. Five years later at the opening of documenta 8 in June 1987, some eighteen months after his father's death, and five years after Beuys planted the first tree, Beuys' son Wenzel planted the last tree. The project was a real gesture towards urban renewal as Beuys improved the urban landscape. Beuys effort is echoed in the work of later artists like Natalie Jeremijenko, documentation of whose One Tree(s) project is on view. In 2003, she engineered a group of cloned trees and planted them in different parts of San Francisco to examine the long-term effect of the different neighborhoods' environmental conditions on the trees' size and general health. Kim Abeles, in her 2011 work Enchanted Forest (and City Hall), combines satellite photography with model trees to create miniature landscapes that call attention to the absurdities of urban development in Los Angeles. Other artists in the exhibition are less activist in their approach, opting rather to create a visceral and immersive aesthetic experience like April Gornik's Light in the Woods (2011), a dense forest painting of monumental scale and depth. Claire Sherman's painting Night and Trees II (2011) is unsettling in its ruggedness, indicating the precarious state of nature while Robert Wiens' meticulously rendered Butternut (2008) is a colossal to-scale drawing of a fallen tree from his property. Marcel Odenbach's mixed media work You Can't See the Forest for the Trees (2003) is a meditation on the idea of trees as silent witnesses to history–a birch forest from Auschwitz-Birkenau, the largest Nazi concentration camp. Jason Lazarus' video The top of the tree gazed upon by Anne Frank while in hiding (Amsterdam) (2008) also acts as a witness to history–specifically to a young girl in hiding, writing to preserve her memory.
Blackfield (2011) by Zadok Ben David evokes the title of the exhibition Do Not Destroy in its disproportionate scale–the viewer hovers menacingly over a frail but delightful pygmy forest. Jun Nguyen-Hatsushiba's video The Ground, the Root, and the Air: The Passing of the Bodhi Tree (2004-2007) shows how a tree's spiritual power can emotionally affect the faithful. Yoko Ono's participatory Wish Tree also elicits belief from its subscribers who are invited to write their wish on a tag to be hung on the tree. In a departure from traditional landscape photography, both Charles LaBelle and Tal Shochat enhance the drama of the tree through artifice. In his 2000 series Illuminated Trees, LaBelle documents the lone trees that dot the resolutely urban environment of contemporary Los Angeles, illuminating them with a high-powered spotlight. Shochat's Five Fruit Trees (2010) are idealized images of bountiful fruit trees at the peak of ripeness that are devoid of any real context. Rodney Graham's photographs of inverted trees defy gravity causing a disorienting rupture of reality. A photograph from his 1998 series Welsh Oaks will be on view. The sculptors in the exhibition are almost God-like in their approaches, conjuring trees from their imaginations that delight with their super-natural physicality. Roxy Paine's larger-than-life tree sculptures resemble the formal structure of trees to a point, but eventually evidence of human intervention becomes apparent, as one notices odd growths, unrealistic proportions, and improbable growth directions. Models of his Palimpsest (2004) and Askew (2007) will be on view. Over the years, Rona Pondick has carefully cast her entire body, which she fuses together with flawlessly cast parts of tree branches. Her Head in Tree (2006-2008) is included in the exhibition. Yuken Teruya contributes two works: Notice–Forest (2006), a delicate tree cut out that stands firmly in the illuminated interior of a disposable bag, and The Giving Tree Project (2006), in which Teruya has cut into Shel Silverstein's book to add trees to its pages, perhaps compensating for the protagonist's neglect in planting for the next generation. Gabriela Albergaria is creating a site-specific work for the exhibition. Using downed trees and branches collected from Golden Gate Park with the help of San Francisco Recreation and Parks, Albergaria will create a hybrid tree sculpture in the gallery using faux grafting techniques based on traditional methods.
With the opening of its new building on June 8, 2008, the Contemporary Jewish Museum (CJM) ushered in a new chapter in its twenty-plus year history of engaging audiences and artists in exploring contemporary perspectives on Jewish culture, history, art, and ideas. The facility, designed by internationally renowned architect Daniel Libeskind, is a lively center where people of all ages and backgrounds can gather to experience art, share diverse perspectives, and engage in hands-on activities. Inspired by the Hebrew phrase "L'Chaim" (To Life), the building is a physical embodiment of the CJM's mission to bring together tradition and innovation in an exploration of the Jewish experience in the 21st century. Visit the museum's website at ... http://www.thecjm.org
Posted: 29 May 2012 06:07 PM PDT
Philadelphia, PA - When the artist, Hans Burkhardt (b. 1904 Basel, Switzerland - d. 1994 Los Angeles) left New York late in 1937, after nearly nine years of sharing Arshile Gorky's studio, he brought to Los Angeles the largest holdings of Gorky works by his friend and mentor, outside Gorky's own holdings. Burkhardt was the first to introduce Gorky's work to other artists and curators in L.A. and his collection was the subject of a number of Gorky museum exhibitions. Hans Burkhardt's "Burial of Gorky" is currently on view as part of the concurrent exhibition, "Arshile Gorky in Context" at the Philadelphia Museum of Art through January 10, 2010.
Posted: 29 May 2012 06:03 PM PDT
Toronto, Canada - La senteur de mes mains / The Marks of My Hands comprises a new site-specific installation created by celebrated Quebec collective BGL at the Koffler Gallery. Formed by Jasmin Bilodeau, Sébastien Giguère and Nicholas Laverdière while still in university, BGL has made an undeniable impact on the contemporary Canadian art scene in the past decade. Their provocative, witty and unpredictable interventions and installations aim to transform passive gallery visitors into engaged explorers. Challenging the ways we define and experience art, BGL invites us to relinquish preconceived notions and to question the boundaries between art and life. On exhibition September 6 to November 25, 2007.
Posted: 29 May 2012 06:02 PM PDT
Kalamazoo, Michigan.- The Kalamazoo Institute of Arts (KIA) is pleased to present "Birds of a Feather: John Costin and John James Audubon" on view from March 24th through June 24th. Separated by two centuries, artists John James Audubon and John Costin are joined by a love of birds and a compulsion to share the thrill of seeing these magnificent creatures in the wild. Nearly 200 years after publication of his monumental Birds of America (1827-1838), Audubon is still America's most famous ornithologist. Nineteenth-century subscribers to Birds of America received 435 oversized plates, illustrating 1,065 individual birds of over 400 species. Inspired by Audubon's presentation of native birds, John Costin is creating his own series: Large Florida Birds. When complete, his project will present 20 of the state's most remarkable birds in similarly life-like poses and oversized format.
Posted: 29 May 2012 06:00 PM PDT
Louisville, Kentucky.- The Speed Art Muiseum is proud to present "Renoir to Chagall: Paris and the Allure of Color" on view at the museum until May 6th. the exhibition presents an extraordinary exhibition of modern French masters featuring 55 paintings from the Dixon Gallery and Garden s in Memphis, Tennessee and nearly 30 works from Speed's collection and public and private collections throughout Kentucky. This major exhibition features French Impressionists and Post-Impressionists, as well as key artists who came immediately before and after them. Among the who's who of painters included in the exhibition are Edgar Degas , Claude Monet , Pierre-Auguste Renoir , Camille Pissarro , Mary Cassatt , Henri Matisse , Paul Cézanne , Paul Gauguin , Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec , Georges Braque , and Marc Chagall . Renoir to Chagall demonstrates how Paris as the art capital of the Western world, produced and attracted artists of great accomplishment.
On view will be portraits, scenes of daily life, still lifes, landscapes, interiors, and the fascinating worlds of the ballet, cafés, boulevards, and other aspects of modern city life that made Paris a magnet for artists. The diverse subjects and styles of the magnificent works in this exhibition will illustrate the critical developments in French painting during this period that profoundly changed the direction of modern art. While the Impressionists experimented with color and light effects to capture the fleeting sensations of reality, the Post-Impressionists loosened ties to realism altogether by emphasizing abstract elements of form and color, and occasionally the inner world of feelings and emotions.
The Speed Art Museum, originally known as the J. B. Speed Memorial Museum, is Kentucky's oldest and largest art museum. It was founded in 1925 by Hattie Bishop Speed as a memorial to her husband, James Breckinridge Speed, a prominent Louisville businessman and philanthropist. Designed by Louisville architect Arthur Loomis, the museum opened its doors on January 15, 1927, with an exhibition sponsored by the Louisville Art Association. Over a hundred American and European painters were represented and nearly two thousand visitors attended the opening. In 1941, Dr. Preston Pope Satterwhite made a significant gift to the museum - his collection of 15th century and 16th century French and Italian Decorative Arts including tapestries and furniture. In 1944, he donated the English Renaissance room, which was moved in its entirety from Devonshire, England. Dr. Satterwhite's gift necessitated an enlargement of the museum and in his will he provided for the addition that bears his name. Completed in 1954, it was the first of three additions to the original building. After another major addition to the building in 1973, the Speed celebrated its 50th anniversary in 1977 with the acquisition of Rembrandt's magnificent "Portrait of a Woman".
While the museum was closed for a dramatic renovation project in 1996, the museum received a life-changing gift, a bequest of more than $50 million from Alice Speed Stoll, granddaughter of James Breckinridge Speed. The bequest marks one of the largest given to any art museum and significantly increased the Speed's endowment, ranking it among the top 25 in the United States. Mrs. Stoll's bequest secured the museum's future and has allowed for several significant acquisitions including Jacob van Ruisdael 's "Landscape with a Half Timbered House and a Blasted Tree", (1653), and Paul Cezanne's Post-Impressionist masterpiece, "Two Apples on a Table" (about 1895-1900).
Since reopening in November 1997, the Speed has dazzled the region with exciting traveling exhibitions, new acquisitions to the permanent collection, and a new parking garage. It has also benefited greatly by a bequest from the estate of long-time Board of Governors member General Dillman A. Rash who left the museum works by Marc Chagall, Jean Dubuffet , Paul Klee , Henri Matisse, Pablo Picasso , and Maurice Utrillo . The museum is supported entirely by donations, endowments, grants, ticket sales, and memberships. The focus of the collection is Western art, from antiquity to the present day. Holdings of paintings from the Netherlands, French and Italian works, and contemporary art are particularly strong, with sculpture prominent throughout. Representative artists include Rembrandt van Rijn , Peter Paul Rubens , Giovanni Tiepolo, Henry Moore , Thomas Gainsborough , Claude Monet, Pablo Picasso, and contemporary artists Frank Stella , Helen Frankenthaler , Alice Neel , Petah Coyne, Yinka Shonibare, Vito Acconci, and Juan Munoz . Today, The Speed Art Museum has come a long way since Mrs. Speed first opened the doors to the original museum over 80 years ago. Its magnificent building and impressive collection serve more than 180,000 visitors each year, making it a nationally recognized institution. Visit the museum's website at ... http://www.speedmuseum.org
Posted: 29 May 2012 05:58 PM PDT
Oklahoma City.- The Oklahoma City Museum of Art is proud to reopen its collection of glass by American artist Dale Chihuly on New Year's Eve. Exhibited on the third floor, "ILLUMINATIONS: Rediscovering the Art of Dale Chihuly" presents a fresh look at the Museum's popular Chihuly collection. Redesigned in collaboration with Chihuly Studio, the newly installed galleries will incorporate a unique design that features a three-dimensional approach to viewing some objects in the collection. The presentation will allow visitors to explore the large Float Boat and Ikebana Boat installations from all sides as well as includes viewing slots for the Reeds. "ILLUMINATIONS" will be accompanied by a special exhibition on the third floor titled "Chihuly: Northwest". On view through April 8, 2012, this exhibition will include glass sculptures by Chihuly inspired by Native American baskets; Chihuly's personal collection of textiles as well as photographs by Edward S. Curtis from The North American Indian Portfolio; and recent examples of Chihuly's White series.
Posted: 29 May 2012 05:57 PM PDT
LONDON.- On 30th November at Bonhams New Bond Street hosted the sale of Russian Art, featuring the eminent names of both Aivazovsky and Fabergé. The first painting by Aivazovsky, whose career spanned almost the entire 19th century, is named "The Morning Catch". It is signed in Cyrillic and dated '1870' (lower right) and further signed in Latin and dated '1870' (lower left). The exceptional seascape oil painting is expected to fetch between £150,000 and £250,000 for the much sought-after artist. Sold for £378,400 inclusive of Buyer's Premium.
Posted: 29 May 2012 05:55 PM PDT
HONG KONG - Britain's White Cube gallery, known as an early champion of provocative British artists Damien Hirst and Tracey Emin, launched its Hong Kong branch on Thursday, becoming the latest Western gallery to open an Asian outpost in pursuit of China's booming art market. White Cube unveiled a 6,000-square-foot (557-square-meter) space in a new building in Hong Kong's central business district. With its first branch outside Britain, White Cube follows other British as well as French and American galleries that have set up shop in Hong Kong in recent years. As their home markets plateau, they're pinning hopes for future growth on Asia, particularly China, where a strong economy has been minting millionaires at a rapid clip. The arrival of White Cube in Hong Kong underlines the sophistication and increasing influence of the region's art collectors. Founded in 1993, White Cube has had a long association with Hirst and Emin, the most prominent of a group known as the Young British Artists that emerged in the 1990s.
Posted: 29 May 2012 05:53 PM PDT
BASEL.- The exhibition at the Museum Tinguely affords an insight in the eccentric collection of Ted Scapa. The well-known Swiss cartoonist, born in 1931 in the Netherlands, was a contributor to the international press before taking over the reins at Benteli Publishers in Berne for over thirty years. With the childrens' programme Das Spielhaus of the German Swiss television DRS Scapa became a known public figure in the 1960s and '70s. Today, he lives and works as a freelance artist and organises Creativity Workshops. On view 4 February through 19 April, 2009.
The exhibition SCAPA Memories documents Scapa's relationship to art and introduces the visitor to his collection and its very personalized dialogue between tradition and Modernity. For Scapa, art is a vital necessity of life. The items that have come together throughout his lifetime do not follow an intentional strategy but rather his intuition. This cultural biotope in which Ted Scapa and his wife Meret have lived and worked for the past fifty years reflects Scapa's vision and experience of the world and of art.
Scapa's favourite word, „creativity", is at the same time his message and the criterion of selection behind the constitution of his collection. A further important impulse of his overflowing passion as a collector are the Memories, his recollections of numerous encounters with artists from all over the world, some of them developing into yearlong friendships, others perchance encounters prompted by the spontaneity of his enthusiasm. With time, this activity produced an inspired medley of artworks and objects that is totally in keeping with Scapa, the man, but also the artist known for his design of lamps and carpets.
His important activity as a publisher (c. 1500 titles) brought him together with a great number of artists, gallery owners, collectors and museum people – a magical mix that always was an inspiration. He was not only close to great names such as Joan Miró or Aimé Maeght, but also entertained close friendly ties with numerous individuals who all partook of his legendary hospitality.
The publication of catalogues brought him in contact with the masters of monumental graphic works, to name but a few of Germany's group of "New Savages" – Georg Baselitz, Markus Lüpertz, A. R. Penck, Jörg Immendorff – and the Swiss artists Martin Disler, Peter Stämpfli or Alfred Hofkunst.
In Scapa's collection that evokes a "cabinet of curios", colourful letter-drawings by Jean Tinguely and one of his machine-sculptures neighbour almost naturally ritual items and objects of daily use from the most varied peoples and eras. Monumental graphic works by the hand of renowned artists of the 20th century, amongst them Antoni Tàpies or Frank Stella, are part of the ensemble, sharing the stage with Chinese terracotta figures or wooden sculptures, masks and reliefs from Africa.
In his Eldorado, his manor-house on the Lake of Morat, sculptures, objects and works on paper fill the drawing- and dining-room, the window niches and all the ledges, the tables and cupboards, the lintels and landings, overflowing from the kitchen to the toilets.
In front of the works on paper stacked along the walls, African figures, mostly male and female nudes, some small others overly large, masks and drums are positioned with accuracy, some of them to fit the images in colour and form, others crudely placed, probably for lack of space. New acquisitions are constantly added and the total artwork acquires a new focus, without however a loss to its impact.
This "cabinet of curios" is a source of inspiration for Ted Scapa and the driving force behind his own artistic output. He is as fascinated by the expressive and often bizarre faces of non-European artworks as he is by the artistic means of expression offered by the technique of reproduction of works on paper by modern artists.
With total insouciance, he cares not whether the African figures are original or copied after old models. The context of their origins does not count, not to speak of any scientifically proven provenance. What does count is the fact that an artisanal artistry has been handed down, a guarantee of survival, without loss to its strength of expression. Thus Ted, the artist, has his very own approach to art, and for Ted, the art communicator, who with his Spielhaus revived the roots of creativity among children of the entire country, a successful reproduction is as valid as its optimum communication. As a publisher, as a man of the written word and an exegete of printing, reproducible art is always closest to him.
The exhibition at the Museum Tinguely presents 120 items from Scapa's collection as well as a film by Roy Oppenheim documenting Scapa's life and his particular relationship to art.
List of artists:
Georg Baselitz / Stefan Berger-Teichmann / François Burland / Alexander Calder / Luciano Castelli / Eduardo Chillida / Christo und Jeanne-Claude / Jan Cremer / Martin Disler / Rainer Fetting / Sam Francis / Keith Haring / Alfred Hofkunst / Karl Horst Hödicke / Jörg Immendorff / Paul Klee / Bernhard Luginbühl / Markus Lüpertz / Felix Müller / Claes Oldenburg / A. R. Penck / Arnulf Rainer / James Rosenquist / Niki de Saint Phalle / Ted Scapa / Meret Schaap / Richard Serra / Peter Stämpfli / Saul Steinberg / Frank Stella / Bert Stern / Antoni Tàpies / Jean Tinguely / Bernar Venet
Visit the Museum Tinguely at : http://www.tinguely.ch/en/index.html
Posted: 29 May 2012 05:52 PM PDT
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