Are you the publisher? Claim or contact us about this channel


Embed this content in your HTML

Search

Report adult content:

click to rate:

Account: (login)

More Channels


Channel Catalog


older | 1 | .... | 318 | 319 | (Page 320) | 321 | 322 | .... | 332 | newer

    0 0

    Tracing Five Decades of
 David Diao's Singular Abstraction

    “Robert Smithson would always say to me, ‘David, you’re a smart cookie, why are you still painting?’” recalls David Diao, who at 72 is still painting. This commitment to canvas is, in fact, a rare constant in Diao’s career, now in
its fifth decade. But he’s not a chauvinist about the medium: If anything, the body of work he has produced over this period, spanning large-scale abstraction, Conceptualism, and 
a turn toward visual and textual citation, represents less
 the efforts of a hermetic allegiance than it does working through the intellectual history of painting and visual art in the last half-century. Since the mid 1980s, when he abandoned pure formalism for a marriage of form and content, Diao has parsed the legacies of modernism—in particular, the painters Barnett Newman and Kazimir Malevich and the architects Philip Johnson and Konstantin Melnikov—just as he has rigorously dissected his own subjectivity as an artist and a Chinese immigrant. In two marathon conversations with Modern Painters over the course of the past year, Diao considered his career as he prepared for two retrospectives: the first, “Front to Back,” at the Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum in Connecticut, ran July 13 to September 21, 2014; the other, a much larger exhibition of over 90 works, opens this month at the Ullens Center for Contemporary Art in Beijing.

    Diao speaks with the engrossing cadence of a conversational storyteller, his self-deprecating and professorial mien betraying no hints of the geographic instability of his early youth. He joined his father in New York City in 1955 at age 12, following an escape from Chengdu, the city of his birth, to Hong Kong, 
in 1949, on the eve of the formation of the Maoist state. After studying philosophy at Kenyon College in Ohio, he returned 
to New York to attend Cooper Union. Soon he began working as an assistant at the Kootz Gallery during the day, handling art and doing odd jobs for Samuel Kootz. “I stopped going to Cooper Union after the first semester, because I felt it was taking away from my studio time,” he says. In 1965 Diao settled into a 22-by-147-foot loft on Canal Street, and the following year, when the Kootz Gallery closed, he went freelance, working as a handler and installer, even storing artworks for various galleries in his cavernous apartment. And so he came to share the space with works like Franz Kline’s monumental Cardinal, a painting he would later reference in his own work (the floor plan of that loft, too, would eventually surface in Diao’s art). His coffee table for some time was a Tony Smith Corten steel box. At one point the Fischbach Gallery, which owned the work, instructed him to relocate it to his fire escape for a little patina development. “They didn’t seem to care about insurance,” Diao says.

    During a stint as a preparator at the Guggenheim, he “lucked into” installing Barnett Newman’s The Stations of the Cross
in 1966. Newman would later become the subject of one of Diao’s longest-running series, cataloguing the late artist’s output in
 a 1991 painting titled Barnett Newman, the Paintings in Scale. That work reappeared as the subject of Home Again, 2013, which chronicled Diao’s eventual repurchase of his 1991 work
 at auction in Hong Kong. (Home Again was also one of two of
 his paintings included by Michelle Grabner in the 2014 Whitney Biennial.) Referentiality and self-referentiality of this type, the formal and conceptual digestion of his modernist heroes and his own narrative, had not yet dawned in Diao’s formative New York of the 1960s. Like many artists of this period, he eschewed a traditional art education for the company of his peers, pursuing graduate study at Max’s Kansas City, the Park Avenue South bar that would become his haunt when the painter Michael Goldberg brought him there shortly after it opened in 1965.

    “We all wanted to do the next thing after Frank Stella. Looking back, we thought about painting as finding some system, or finding some plan, and then executing it repeatedly,” Diao notes of his early preoccupations. Indeed, before his turn away from pure abstraction, he was a dyed-in-the-wool formalist, though conceptual inclinations shone through from the beginning. He began his career making large “square” paintings with diagonal lines, influenced by Ad Reinhardt, an example of which he showed at the cooperative Park Place Gallery in 1967, which evolved into an interest in process and material. This manifested itself in his first solo exhibition at Paula Cooper Gallery, in 1969. He had met Cooper at Park Place, where she was the gallery director, and eventually joined her founding roster, becoming one of the first artists she presented in a solo exhibition. “The show was called ‘Sheetrock,’” Diao says, “and one piece was five standard panels of Sheetrock, four by eight feet, which I actually went to several different lumberyards to get, because I discovered there were subtle differences in color, to the point that some are pinkish while others are greenish.”

    “I remember the sculpture very, very well,” Cooper recalled on a recent afternoon. “It was very much his own work. It 
was quite elegant, and I wouldn’t describe a lot of work at that time as elegant, exactly. It didn’t have that rigorous kind of purity that a lot of work had, and it wasn’t funky. People were very involved with material, so ‘Sheetrock’ was a part of that, but I never got the feeling that he was interested in material
 or process in the way that artists who were really interested
 in the properties of material were.” In addition to the Sheetrock piece, Diao showed a hollow Homasote box that was an explicit reference to the Tony Smith with which he had cohabitated, but worked through in a lightweight paper-based material and sanded for a suedelike finish. “It had this really soft, gray surface. There was a fineness about David’s work. It was different from other people’s in that way,” Cooper said.

    “One of the reasons I was drawn to process art,” Diao says, “is that it’s a way not to keep anything mysterious. If what you’re doing can be reconstituted by the viewer, you’re dealing the viewer into the image. Anyone using the same instrument could do the same job.” This ethos followed Diao into large-scale abstraction and large-scale success. He sold strongly in early shows, catching the attention of the collector Larry Aldrich, who included Diao in “Young Lyrical Painters,” his 1969 Art in America article on lyrical abstraction. But Diao did not buy the categorization: “Though I didn’t speak to him personally, I loudly said that I don’t think my work is lyrical abstraction.” For Diao, even at this early stage, lyrical abstraction implied too much autonomy, relying on a sort of mysticism that his interest in process simply did not allow, even if the results
 were similar enough to fool Aldrich. The marks that Aldrich had misdiagnosed as lyrical were in fact highly procedural exercises in one-to-one markmaking: Diao would use found cardboard rollers, some five feet wide, as squeegees, a method that has come to be associated with Gerhard Richter. Word of the artist’s objection traveled, and when Aldrich put together his “Lyrical Abstraction” exhibition, which went from his eponymous Connecticut museum to New York’s Whitney Museum in 1970 and ’71, the artist was not included. Diao was “both happy
and unhappy” about this correction—intellectual honesty had come at the cost of valuable institutional recognition.

    Though his second exhibition at Paula Cooper, in 1970, was a success, with work acquired by Aldrich and others, it would also be his last at the gallery. After a misstep involving a sale done with an outside dealer, Diao would soon find himself off the roster, landing a short while later at Reese Palley, a well-funded upstart founded by an Atlantic City entrepreneur. “A little while after that, Reese Palley offered me a big one-person show, and that was probably, to my mind, the biggest mistake I ever made, because Reese Palley closed and Cooper went on
to become a major gallery,” Diao says. Palley’s gallery was a flash in the pan, employing the bellicose critic Dave Hickey as director and showing a number of prominent artists of that moment, including Jennifer Bartlett and Yoko Ono. But despite this setback, the early shows earned Diao some momentum: In 1969 alone he managed to show with Peter Young at Leo Castelli Gallery and with Brice Marden at Carmen Lamanna Gallery in Toronto; and in 1972 he appeared alongside Cy Twombly in a Hampshire College exhibition.

    As Diao’s market fortunes waned, he immersed himself in intellectual life, joining the faculty of the Whitney Independent Study Program (ISP) in 1970, an involvement that would last until 2000. He also taught at the School of Visual Arts, where he filled in for an ill Eva Hesse, and at Yale and Cooper Union. Though intellectually productive—through teaching, particularly at the ISP, the Frankfurt School entered into his thought—the mid to late 1970s was not a prolific period for Diao, which allowed him to explore the combination of “rationale with immediacy” at length. “It happened to be a time when there wasn’t much interest in my work, so I had the leisure to focus on the same paintings a very long while. Between around ’74 and ’82, there were probably about 10 paintings I could
stand behind,” Diao says. In 1974 he decamped from SoHo
 and obtained a lease on a loft building on Franklin Street in Tribeca, splitting it floor by floor with ISP colleagues Ron Clark and Yvonne Rainer. Today only Diao remains in the building, sharing the elegant, modernist furniture–strewn space with
his longtime partner, artist Maureen Connor, whom he calls 
his “most honest and critical friend.”

    By the dawn of the next decade, however, he felt stuck, and escaped to Paris in 1983. “This was the dead of winter for me
in terms of work, when I had no idea what to do,” Diao says. But soon a breakthrough arrived, care of Kazimir Malevich’s 1915 debut of his Suprematist paintings. “I could use the Malevich to allude to something bigger, because it does have this resonance as an Ur-moment of abstraction, and what could be better than to point to that, and in a way try to steal its thunder? And that was a big opening for me. Once I realized I could do that, the sterility of the conventions seemed to break open somehow,” Diao explains. Thus, his introduction of silkscreen and vinyl onto the painted canvas: a citational strategy that allowed content—external images and symbols—to come into painterly congress.

    The first painting from his Malevich series, On Our Land, executed in the fall of 1984, juxtaposed an inverted black Suprematist triangle with a Palestinian flag picked up at a march on Fifth Avenue. The formal doubling echoed Diao’s own sense
 of territorial dispossession relative to the great modernists, relating the land Palestinians sought to regain and, as the artist put it, “the terrain of this critical art that I love so much.” It was at this point that his current New York gallerist, Magda Sawon of Postmasters, added Diao to her inaugural stable of artists. “She rescued me from the gutter,” Diao offers, the hyperbole and gratitude in his pronouncement lingering over the bowl of bright, early-season strawberries he has set between us.

    Underneath the crimson expanse of Diao’s later Barnett Newman painting in the back room of Postmasters, Sawon recalled her 1984 studio visit with Diao. “Going back to 1984, that Malevich group of work was for me fascinating and very understandable, perhaps because I had an art historical background and had come from Eastern Europe, so there were these two kinds of connectors that—on top of everything else—allowed me to embrace and understand the work,” Sawon says. She ended up enlisting him for a solo exhibition in 1985. “That show was his reemergence on the scene, and it was very successful, it was a very serious proposition,” she adds. Prominent collectors like Barbara and Eugene Schwartz purchased works, and it was widely reviewed, earning a feature in Art in America titled “Diaorama,” by Stephen Westfall.

    Three decades on, Diao is the longest-tenured artist on the Postmasters roster, and with the small retrospective exhibition at the Aldrich museum last year, even his earlier, large-format abstractions are undergoing something of a renaissance. “We have at this point a serious reawakening in his vintage work,” Sawon said. Read through Diao’s autobiographical paintings chronicling his sales (Sales, 1991) and exhibitions (the three- panel Résumé, 1991), this resurgence of interest alights upon an artist whose subtle modesty, his status as a stalwart observer, has been definitive of his practice. “Most artists,” Diao deadpans, “are not like Brice Marden; most artists are like me.” In one especially playful work, Synecdoche, 1993, a Gerhard Richter catalogue essay by Benjamin H.D. Buchloh is annotated and pasted over: Each instance of Richter’s name is crossed out and replaced with Diao’s, and each “squeegee” painting is pasted over with an earlier work in the same style from Diao. In conversation, Diao tells me that he considered modifying Buchloh’s initials to read “PhD,” a reference to the critic’s delayed dissertation. 

    Call it critical historicism, or insider-outsider pranksterism.

    As Diao continued to tackle successive histories, and historicities, through the end of the ’80s and into the following decades, the teaching appointments continued to come in. At Hampshire College in 1996 he met Walid Raad, and the pair struck up a friendship that would eventually give rise to a 2012 joint exhibition at Paula Cooper, where Raad is on the roster. “I came to be attracted to his use of graphic lines, whether from architectural drawings or plans, and of other lines borrowed from institutional documents, as well as his use of words and his choice of colors,” Raad says. “I always wondered where his lines and colors originated, and the relations he sets up between the final lines on his canvas and their original referents. Moreover, I wondered why he needed these ‘borrowed’ lines and colors to paint, to make paintings per se. It is clear that David has been deeply affected by certain forms and concepts from modern art and architecture, mostly Western modernism, so much so that he was unable to paint unless he went through them again—not in the sense of repeating them, nor adapting them, but in some ‘repeating for the first time again’ kind of gesture. This is the type of gesture that I am drawn to time and again in his works.” For her part, Cooper was glad that Raad brought in Diao for the exhibition. “It was very nice to see him again. I was impressed with the work,” she said.

    It was also in the 1990s and 2000s that Diao came into making work about his Asian-American identity, using an image of Bruce Lee in a simulated museum exhibition invitation in 1994’s Carton d’invitation, for example, or exploring his family origins in China with a 2007–08 series on the layout of his ancestral Da Hen Li house in Chengdu. As he moves through 
the archives of modern art and architecture and into the history, memories, and sentiments of his own identity, Diao’s clinical style does not seem to dissolve. “Identity politics entered the picture in the 1990s, and I had to respond to it,” he says, adding, half jokingly, that he was “dragged kicking and screaming. I was very happy dealing with high modernism.” This heterodox willingness to embrace and work through different positions has resulted 
in a diffractive body of scholarship and criticism on his work, from Aldrich’s rebuked “lyrical abstraction” thesis to Žižekian racial theory (Paul A. Anderson in Third Text, Winter 1995–96) to data visualization (Michael Corris in the Ullens catalogue).

    Out of this relentless inventiveness emerges the need for a comprehensive assessment of Diao’s work, a role the hardcover Ullens Center catalogue intends to occupy. Superficially, the Ullens retrospective is a sort of geographic return to the origin for an artist who has little interest in the point of origin as
such: “I honestly don’t see how my work could register in China. Things are changing, though, and younger artists are influenced by what’s happening elsewhere,” Diao says. Ullens curator and director Philip Tinari acknowledges that this exhibition is not a homecoming but an invitation. “Hopefully, it can bring out the best in both contexts. It’s certainly not an attempt to ‘claim’ him for China. But his is a body of work that is more globally relevant than ever, particularly here and now.”

    A version of this article appears in the September 2015 issue of Modern Painters.

    David Diao

    0 0

    500 Best Galleries Worldwide 2015: Asia

    The art world continues its unprecedented expansion in 2015, with bigger fairs, higher sales, and more exciting talent. But despite the abundance of new ways to show, sell, and discover art, galleries remain at the epicenter of this constantly changing scene. A special summer issue of Modern Painters, which will be published in installments on ARTINFO through next week, surveys the best of them, across six continents and 36 countries. Throughout the issue you’ll also hear from 50 of the most influential gallery owners and directors, discussing their achievements and envies, the artists they have their eye on, and the regional trends affecting this increasingly international market. Below you’ll find the list of the best galleries of Asia in 2015. To read previously published installments of this series, click here.  

    CHINA

    10 CHANCERY LANE
    Hong Kong
    ARTISTS: Sutee Kunavichayanont, Petroc Sesti, Vu Dan Tan, Vincent Fantauzzo
    
ESTABLISHED: 2001
    CONTACT:10chancerylanegallery.com, info@10chancerylanegallery.com, +852 2810 0065

    AIKE-DELLARCO
    Shanghai
    LEADERSHIP: Roberto Ceresia
    ARTISTS: Chen Jie, Lee Kit, Tang Dixin, Wang Yi, Hu Yun
    ESTABLISHED: 2005
    CONTACT: aikedellarco.com, shanghai@aikedellarco.com, +86 21 5252 0010

    AM ART SPACE
    Shanghai
    ARTISTS: Hugo Dalton, Peter Vink, Bas Köhler, Sibylle Hofter, Kerry AnnLee
    ESTABLISHED: 2009
    CONTACT: amspacesh.com, amspacesh@vip.126.com, +86 21 6384 2432

    AROUNDSPACE
    Shanghai
    LEADERSHIP: Jeff Zou
    ARTISTS: Lu Yuan min, Qiu Jia,Tang Shu, Maleonn,DongWenSheng
    CONTACT: aroundspace.gallery, aroundspace@gmail.com, +86 21 3305 0100

    ARROW FACTORY
    Beijing
    ARTISTS: Cai Hui, Liu Yin, Li Yueyang, Liang Yue, Liu Wei
    ESTABLISHED: 2008
    CONTACT: arrowfactory.org.cn, arrowfactory@gmail.com

    ARTLABOR
    Shanghai
    LEADERSHIP: Martin Kemble
    ARTISTS: Lu Xinjian, Ying Yefu, Christy Lee Rogers, Li Lihong, Zhou Fan
    ESTABLISHED: 2007
    CONTACT: artlaborgallery.com, info@artlaborgallery.com, +86 21 3460 5331

    AURA GALLERY
    Beijing
    LEADERSHIP: William Zhang
    ARTISTS: Araki Nobuyoshi, Klavdij Sluban, Kuan Yun, You Li, Wang Mengsha
    ESTABLISHED: 2000
    INTERNATIONAL LOCATIONS: Taipei, Taiwan
    CONTACT: aura-art.com, beijing@auragallery.net, +86 10 5978 9280

    BEIJING ART NOW
    Beijing
    LEADERSHIP: HuangLiaoyuan
    ARTISTS: Hong Shaopei, Zheng Wei, Zhou Jie, Yu Xiao, Yao Peng
    ESTABLISHED: 2004
    CONTACT: beijingartnow.com, angallery@vip.sina.com, +86 10 5127 3292

    BEIJING COMMUNE
    Beijing
    LEADERSHIP: Leng Lin
    ARTISTS: Lu Yang, Xiao Yu, Ma Qiusha, Xie Molin, Wang Guangle
    ESTABLISHED: 2004
    CONTACT: beijingcommune.com, info@beijingcommune.com, +86 10 8456 2862

    BEN BROWN FINE ARTS
    Hong Kong
    LEADERSHIP: Ben Brown and Andreas Hecker
    ARTISTS: Miquel Barceló, Candida Höfer, Claude & François-Xavier Lalanne, Heinz Mack,
Vik Muniz
    ESTABLISHED: 2004
    INTERNATIONAL LOCATIONS: London, U.K.
    CONTACT: benbrownfinearts.com, hkinfo@benbrownfinearts.com, info@benbrownfinearts.com, +852 2522 9600

    BLINDSPOT GALLERY
    Hong Kong
    ARTISTS: David Boyce, Dick Chan, Liu Zheng, Martin Parr, Zhang Haier
    ESTABLISHED: 2010
    CONTACT: blindspotgallery.com, info@blindspotgallery.com, +852 2517 6238

    BOERS-LI GALLERY
    Beijing
    LEADERSHIP: Pi Li and Waling Boers
    ARTISTS: Chen Shaoxiong, Gade, Song Kun, Tang Song, Xue Feng
    ESTABLISHED: 2005
    CONTACT: boersligallery.com, info@boersligallery.com, +86 10 6432 2620

    BTAP (BEIJING TOKYO ART PROJECTS)
    Beijing
    LEADERSHIP: Yukihito Tabata
    ARTISTS: Chiharu Nishizawa, Oscar Oiwa, Lee Ufan, Miki Taira, Gyoko Yoshida
    ESTABLISHED: 2002
    INTERNATIONAL LOCATIONS: Tokyo, Japan
    CONTACT: tokyo-gallery.com, btap@tokyo-gallery.com, +86 10 5978 4838

    C-SPACE
    Beijing
    LEADERSHIP: Melle Hendrikse
    ARTISTS: Ren Han, Zhang Dali, Yu Ji, Zhang Shujian, Wang Xin
    ESTABLISHED: 2008
    CONTACT: c-spacebeijing.com, info@c-spacebeijing.com, +86 10 5127 3248

    EDOUARD MALINGUE GALLERY
    Hong Kong
    LEADERSHIP: Edouard Malingue and Lorraine Malingue
    
ARTISTS: Jeremy Everett, Ko Sin Tung, Tromarama, João Vasco Paiva, Yuan Yuan
    ESTABLISHED: 2010
    CONTACT: edouardmalingue.com, mail@edouardmalingue.com +852 2810 0317

    FAURSCHOU FOUNDATION
    Beijing
    LEADERSHIP: Jens Faurschou
    ARTISTS: Ai Weiwei, Louise Bourgeois, Bill Viola, Danh Vo, Zhang Huan
    ESTABLISHED: 2011
    INTERNATIONAL LOCATIONS: Copenhagen, Denmark; Venice, Italy
    CONTACT: faurschou.com, beijing@faurschou.com, +86 10 5978 9316

    GALERIE PARIS-BEIJING
    Beijing
    LEADERSHIP: Flore Degoul and Romain Degoul
    ARTISTS: Liu Bolin, Yang Yongliang, Zhu Xinyu, Li Wei, Wang Haiyang
    ESTABLISHED: 2006
    INTERNATIONAL LOCATIONS: Brussels, Belgium; Paris, France
    CONTACT: galerieparisbeijing.com, beijing@galerieparisbeijing.com, +86 10 6401 8782

    GALERIE URS MEILE
    Beijing
    LEADERSHIP: Urs Meile
    ARTISTS: Wang Xingwei, Cheng Ran, Li Gang, Qiu Shihua, Yan Xing
    ESTABLISHED: 1992
    INTERNATIONAL LOCATIONS: Lucerne, Switzerland
    CONTACT: galerieursmeile.com, beijing@galerieursmeile.com, +86 10 6433 3393

    GALLERY MAGDA DANYSZ
    Shanghai
    LEADERSHIP: Magda Danysz
    ARTISTS: JR, Prune Nourry, Erwin Olaf, Huang Rui, Vhils
    ESTABLISHED: 1999
    INTERNATIONAL LOCATIONS: Paris, France; London, U.K.
    CONTACT: magda-gallery.com, info@magda-gallery.com, +86 21 5513 9599

    KARIN WEBER GALLERY
    Hong Kong
    LEADERSHIP: KarinWeber
    ARTISTS: Sangsik Hong, Tar Tie
    ESTABLISHED: 1999
    CONTACT: karinwebergallery.com, art@karinwebergallery.com, +852 2544 5004

    LEO GALLERY
    Shanghai and Hong Kong
    ARTISTS: Barbara Edelstein, Tom Frost, Rosanna Li, Sim Chan, Kum Chi Keung
    CONTACT: leogallery.com.cn, enquiry@leogallery.com.cn, +852 2803 2333

    LEO XU PROJECTS
    Shanghai
    LEADERSHIP: Leo Xu
    ARTISTS: Cheng Ran, Chen Wei, Guo Hongwei, Liu Chuang, Cui Jie
    ESTABLISHED: 2011
    CONTACT: leoxuprojects.com, info@leoxuprojects.com, +86 21 3461 2450

    LINE GALLERY
    Beijing
    ARTISTS: Bu Hua, Li Xinyu, Li Zhihong, Wang Jiachun, ZouTau
    ESTABLISHED: 2006
    CONTACT: line-gallery.com, art@line-gallery.com, +86 10 5975 6999

    LONG MARCH SPACE
    Beijing
    LEADERSHIP: Theresa Liang and Chiara Hsinke Lee
    ARTISTS: Chen Chieh-jen, Guo Fengyi, Huang Ran, Wang Sishun, Zhan Wang
    ESTABLISHED: 2002
    CONTACT: longmarchspace.com, lm@longmarchspace.com, +86 10 5978 9768

    M97 GALLERY
    Shanghai
    LEADERSHIP: Steven Harris
    ARTISTS: Adou, Shao Wenhuan, Wang Ningde, Han Lei, Luo Dan
    ESTABLISHED: 2006
    CONTACT: m97gallery.com, info@m97gallery.com, +86 21 6266 1597

    MAGICIAN SPACE
    Beijing
    LEADERSHIP: Qu Kejie
    ARTISTS: Ai Weiwei, Bai Yiluo, Chen Zhou, Tang Yongxiang, Wu Chen
    ESTABLISHED: 2008
    CONTACT: magician-space.com, info@magician-space.com, +86 10 5840 5117

    OSAGEGALLERY
    Hong Kong, Beijing, and Shanghai
    LEADERSHIP: Agnes Lin
    ARTISTS: Au Hoi Lam, Kingsley Ng, Tintin Wulia, Leung Mee Ping, Sara Tse
    ESTABLISHED: 2004
    CONTACT: osagegallery.com, info@osagegallery.com, +852 2793 4817

    PARA SITE
    Hong Kong
    LEADERSHIP: Cosmin Costinas and Frances Wu Giarratano
    ESTABLISHED: 1996
    CONTACT: para-site.org.hk, info@para-site.org.hk, +852 2517 4620

    PEARL LAM GALLERIES
    Shanghai and Hong Kong
    LEADERSHIP: Pearl Lam
    ARTISTS: Choi Jeong Hwa, Jenny Holzer, Joana Vasconcelos, Li Xiaojing, Zhu Jinshi
    ESTABLISHED: 1993
    INTERNATIONAL LOCATIONS: Singapore
    CONTACT: pearllam.com, info@pearllamgalleries.com, +86 21 6323 1989

    PLATFORM CHINA
    Beijing and Hong Kong
    LEADERSHIP: Sun Ning and Chen Haitao
    ESTABLISHED: 2005
    CONTACT: platformchina.org, hk@platformchina.org, +852 2523 8893

    RED GATE GALLERY
    Beijing
    LEADERSHIP: Brian Wallace
    ARTISTS: Li Jinguo, Liu Qinghe, Ye Sen, Zhang Zhaohui, Zhou Jun
    ESTABLISHED: 1991
    CONTACT: redgategallery.com, brian@redgategallery.com, +86 10 6525 1005

    SHANGHAI GALLERY OF ART
    Shanghai
    LEADERSHIP: Zhang Li
    ARTISTS: Gao Lei, Mu Chen, Wu Di, Xu Bing, Yang Yongliang
    ESTABLISHED: 2004
    CONTACT: shanghaigalleryofart.com, gr@on-the-bund.com, +86 21 6321 5757

    SHANGHART
    Shanghai and Beijing
    LEADERSHIP: Lorenz Helbling
    ARTISTS: Birdhead, Pu Jie, Shao Yi, Xu Zhen, Zeng Fanzhi, Zhang Ding
    ESTABLISHED: 1996
    INTERNATIONAL LOCATIONS: Singapore
    CONTACT: shanghartgallery.com, info@shanghartgallery.com, +86 21 6359 3923

    SPACE STATION
    Beijing
    LEADERSHIP: Fu Xiaodong
    ARTISTS: Dong Dawei, Shang Chengxiang, Yang Fan, Yang Xin, Zheng Jiang
    ESTABLISHED: 2009
    CONTACT: space-station-art.com, info@space-station-art.com, +86 10 5978 9671

    STAR GALLERY
    Beijing
    LEADERSHIP: Fang Fang
    ARTISTS: Kensuke Karasawa, Gao Yu, Jin Nü, Xu Maomao, Yan Cong
    ESTABLISHED: 2005
    CONTACT: stargallery.cn, info@stargallery.cn, +86 10 6418 9591

    TANG CONTEMPORARYART
    Beijing
    LEADERSHIP: Zheng Lin
    ARTISTS: Du Zhenjun, William Lim, Ken Lum, Wang Du, Zheng Guogu
    ESTABLISHED: 2000
    INTERNATIONAL LOCATIONS: Hong Kong, China; Bangkok, Thailand
    CONTACT: tangcontemporary.com, info@tangcontemporary.com, +86 10 5978 9610

    THREE SHADOWS
    Beijing
    LEADERSHIP: RongRong and inri
    ESTABLISHED: 2007
    CONTACT: threeshadows.cn, info@threeshadows.cn, +86 10 6432 2663

    VITAMIN CREATIVE SPACE
    Guangzhou
    LEADERSHIP: HuFang
    ARTISTS: Cao Fei, Duan Jianyu, Olafur Eliasson, Koki Tanaka, Zhou Tao
    ESTABLISHED: 2002
    CONTACT: vitamincreativespace.com, mail@vitamincreativespace.com, +86 20 8429 6760

    WHITESPACE BEIJING
    Beijing
    LEADERSHIP: Tian Yuan and Zhang Di
    ARTISTS: He Xiangyu, Li Liao, Li Shurui, Liu Wentao, Liu Xinyi
    ESTABLISHED: 2004
    CONTACT: whitespace-beijing.com, info@whitespace-beijing.com, +86 10 8456 2054

    XIN DONG CHENG
    Beijing
    LEADERSHIP: Xin Dong Cheng
    ESTABLISHED: 2000
    CONTACT: chengxindong.com, contact@xindongcheng.com, +86 10 5978 9356

    YAN GALLERY
    Hong Kong
    LEADERSHIP: Fong Yuk Yan
    ARTISTS: Pang Yongjie, Wu Guanzhong, Wang Huaiqing, Xie Ke, BobYan
    ESTABLISHED: 2001
    CONTACT: yangallery.com, yanart@netvigator.com, +852 2139 2345

    INDIA

    AKAR PRAKAR
    Kolkata, New Delhi, and Jaipur
    LEADERSHIP: Reena Lath
    ARTISTS: SHRaza, MeeraMukherjee, Ganesh Haloi, Jayashree Chakravarty, Debanjan Roy
    ESTABLISHED: 2004
    CONTACT: akarprakar.com, info@akarprakar.com, +91 33 2464 2617

    CHATTERJEE & LAL
    Mumbai
    LEADERSHIP: Mortimer Chatterjee and Tara Lal
    ARTISTS: Minam Apang, Nikhil Chopra, Rashid Rana, Sahej Rahal
    ESTABLISHED: 2003
    CONTACT: chatterjeeandlal.com, info@chatterjeeandlal.com, +91 22 2202 3787

    DAG MODERN
    New Delhi and Mumbai
    LEADERSHIP: Ashish Anand
    ESTABLISHED: 1993
    INTERNATIONAL LOCATIONS: New York, U.S.
    CONTACT: dagmodern.com, delhi@dagmodern.com, +91 11 4600 5300

    EXPERIMENTER
    Kolkata
    LEADERSHIP: Prateek Raja and Priyanka Raja
    ARTISTS: Naeem Mohaiemen, Bani Abidi, CAMP, Nadia Kaabi-Linke, Praneet Soi
    ESTABLISHED: 2009
    CONTACT: experimenter.in, info@experimenter.in, +91 33 4001 2289

    GALERIE MIRCHANDANI + STEINREUCKE
    Mumbai
    LEADERSHIP: Usha Mirchandani and Ranjana Steinruecke
    ARTISTS: Vinod Balak, Jyothi Basu, Siji Krishnan, Gieve Patel, VidhaSaumya
    ESTABLISHED: 2006
    CONTACT: galeriems.com, info@galeriems.com, +91 22 2202 3030

    GALLERY ESPACE
    New Delhi
    LEADERSHIP: Renu Modi
    ARTISTS: Zarina Hashmi, Nilima Sheikh, Manjunath Kamath, Chintan Upadhyay, Waswo X Waswo
    ESTABLISHED: 1989
    CONTACT: galleryespace.com, art@galleryespace.com, +91 11 2632 6267

    GALLERY MASKARA
    Mumbai
    LEADERSHIP: Abhay Maskara
    ARTISTS: Avantika Bawa, Meenkashi Sengupta, Shine Shivan, Max Streicher, Narendra Yadav
    ESTABLISHED: 2006
    CONTACT: gallerymaskara.com, info@gallerymaskara.com, +91 22 2202 3056

    GALLERYSKE
    Bangalore and New Delhi
    LEADERSHIP: Sunitha Kumar Emmart
    ARTISTS: Krishnaraj Chonat, Sakshi Gupta, Sreshta Rit Premnath, Pors & Rao, Avinash Veeraraghavan
    ESTABLISHED: 2013
    CONTACT: galleryske.com, post@galleryske.com, +91 80 4112 0873

    JHAVERI CONTEMPORARY
    Mumbai
    LEADERSHIP: Amrita Jhaveri and Priya Jhaveri
    ARTISTS: Yamini Nayar, Ali Kazim, Simryn Gill, Anwar Jalal Shemza, Lionel Wendt
    ESTABLISHED: 2010
    CONTACT: jhavericontemporary.com, info@jhavericontemporary.com, +91 22 2369 3639

    NATURE MORTE
    New Delhi and Gurgaon
    LEADERSHIP: Peter Nagy and Aparajita Jain
    ARTISTS: Samit Das, Rohini Devasher, Ray Meeker, Mona Rai, Mithu Sen
    ESTABLISHED: 1997
    INTERNATIONAL LOCATIONS: Berlin, Germany
    CONTACT: naturemorte.com, info@naturemorte.com, +91 11 4174 0215

    PHOTOINK
    New Delhi
    LEADERSHIP: Devika Daulet-Singh
    ARTISTS: Madhuban Mitra & Manas Bhattacharya, Madan Mahatta, Dhruv Malhotra, Dileep Prakash, Ketaki Sheth
    ESTABLISHED: 2001
    CONTACT: photoink.net, gallery@photoink.net, +91 11 2689 7733

    PROJECT88
    Mumbai
    LEADERSHIP: Sree Goswami
    ARTISTS: Shumon Ahmed, Hemali Bhuta, Baptist Coelho, Shreyas Karle, Huma Mulji
    ESTABLISHED: 2006
    CONTACT: project88.in, contact@project88.in, +91 22 2281 0066

    SAKSHI GALLERY
    Mumbai
    LEADERSHIP: Geetha Mehra
    ARTISTS: Dhruva Mistry, Rekha Rodwittiya, Surendran Nair, Valay Shende, Vivek Vilasini
    ESTABLISHED: 1984
    CONTACT: sakshigallery.com, enquiry@sakshigallery.com, +91 22 6610 3424

    TALWAR GALLERY
    New Delhi
    LEADERSHIP: Deepak Talwar
    ARTISTS: Alwar Balasubramaniam, Zarina Bhimji, Valsan Kolleri, Nasreen Mohamedi, Alia Syed
    ESTABLISHED: 2001
    INTERNATIONALLOCATIONS: New York, U.S.
    CONTACT: talwargallery.com, tg@talwargallery.com, +91 11 4605 0307

    THE GUILD ART GALLERY
    Mumbai
    LEADERSHIP: Shalini Sawhney
    ARTISTS: Shadi Ghadirian, Riyas Komu, Amitabh Kumar, Akbar Padamsee, Om Soorya
    ESTABLISHED: 1997
    CONTACT: guildindia.com, theguildart@gmail.com, + 91 22 2288 0195

    VADEHRA ART GALLERY
    New Delhi
    LEADERSHIP: Parul Vadehra
    ARTISTS: Shilpa Gupta, Zakkir Hussain, Ram Kumar, Raghu Rai, Praneet Soi
    ESTABLISHED: 1987
    INTERNATIONALLOCATIONS: London, U.K.
    CONTACT: vadehraart.com, art@vadehraart.com, +91 11 2462 2545

    VOLTE
    Mumbai
    LEADERSHIP: Tushar Jiwarajka
    ARTISTS: Ranbir Kaleka, Nalini Malani, Sheba Chhachhi, William Kentridge, Humans since 1982
    ESTABLISHED: 2008
    CON​TACT: volte.in, info@volte.in, +91 22 4096 3300

    JAPAN

    ARATANIURANO
    Tokyo
    LEADERSHIP: Mutsumi Urano
    ARTISTS: Tatzu Nishi, Takahiro Iwasaki, Tadasu Takamine, Toshiyuki Konishi, Yuichi Yokoyama
    ESTABLISHED: 2007
    CONTACT: arataniurano.com, info@arataniurano.com, +81 3 5422 8320

    G/P GALLERY
    Tokyo
    LEADERSHIP: Shigeo Goto
    ARTISTS: Stephen Gill, Ina Jang, Yuhki Touyama, Yumiko Utsu, Daisuke Yokota
    ESTABLISHED: 2008
    CONTACT: gptokyo.jp, info@gptokyo.jp, +81 3 5422 9331

    MIZUMA ART GALLERY
    Tokyo
    LEADERSHIP: Sueo Mizuma
    ARTISTS: Mikiko Kumazawa, Sachie Noda, Jun O, Ai Yamaguchi, Akira Yamaguchi
    ESTABLISHED: 1994
    INTERNATIONAL LOCATIONS: Singapore; Beijing, China
    CONTACT: mizuma-art.co.jp, gallery@mizuma-art.co.jp, +81 3 3268 2500

    NANZUKA
    Tokyo
    LEADERSHIP: Shinji Nanzuka
    ARTISTS: Sumiyo Ito, Jan Pleitner, Hajime Sorayama, Keiichi Tanaami, Hiroki Tsukuda
    ESTABLISHED: 2005
    CONTACT: nug.jp, info@nug.jp, +81 3 3400 0075

    TAKE NINAGAWA
    Tokyo
    LEADERSHIP: Atsuko Ninagawa
    ARTISTS: Ryoko Aoki, Elias Hansen, Ken Okiishi, Aki Sasamoto, Soju Tao
    ESTABLISHED: 2008
    CONTACT: takeninagawa.com, info@takeninagawa.com, +81 3 5571 5844

    OTA FINE ARTS
    Tokyo
    LEADERSHIP: Hidenori Ota and Yusuko Kaneko
    ARTISTS: Tang Dixin, Tomoko Kashiki, Yayoi Kusama, Firoz Mahmud, Yoshiko Shimada
    ESTABLISHED: 1994
    INTERNATIONALLOCATIONS: Singapore
    CONTACT: otafinearts.com, info@otafinearts.com, +81 3 6447 1123

    SCAI THE BATH HOUSE
    Tokyo
    LEADERSHIP: Masami Shiraishi
    ARTISTS: Jenny Holzer, Anish Kapoor, Mariko Mori, Tomoko Shioyasu, Sputniko!
    ESTABLISHED: 1993
    CONTACT: scaithebathhouse.com, info@scaithebathhouse.com, +81 3 3821 1144

    SHUGO ARTS
    Tokyo
    LEADERSHIP: Shugo Satani
    ARTISTS: Masato Kobayashi, Boris Mikhailov, Ritsue Mishima, Yoriko Takabatake, JunYang
    ESTABLISHED: 2000
    CONTACT: shugoarts.com, info@shugoarts.com, +81 3 5621 6434

    TAKA ISHII GALLERY
    Tokyo
    LEADERSHIP: Elisa Uematsu
    ARTISTS: Ei Arakawa, Sean Landers, Helen Mirra, Kyoko Murase, Kei Takemura
    ESTABLISHED: 1994
    INTERNATIONAL LOCATIONS: New York, U.S.; Paris, France
    CONTACT: takaishiigallery.com, tig@takaishiigallery.com, +81 3 6434 7010

    TOMIO KOYAMA GALLERY
    Tokyo
    LEADERSHIP: Tomio Koyama
    ARTISTS: Franz Ackermann, Atsushi Fukui, Satoshi Hirose, Richard Tuttle, Keisuke Yamamoto
    ESTABLISHED: 1996
    INTERNATIONAL LOCATIONS: Singapore
    CONTACT: tomiokoyamagallery.com, info@tomiokoyamagallery.com, +81 3 3642 4090

    WAKO WORKS OF ART
    Tokyo
    LEADERSHIP: KiyoshiWako
    ARTISTS: Raoul De Keyser, Noritoshi Hirakawa, Luc Tuymans, Henk Visch, Nana Yokoi
    ESTABLISHED: 1992
    CONTACT: wako-art.jp, info@wako-art.jp, +81 3 6447 1820

    YAMAMOTO GENDAI
    Tokyo
    LEADERSHIP: Yuko Yamamoto
    ARTISTS: Nicolas Buffe, Shinichi Hara, Osamu Mori, Motohiko Odani, Keisuke Tanaka
    ESTABLISHED: 2004
    CONTACT: yamamotogendai.org, i@yamamotogendai.org, +81 3 6383 0626

    YUKA TSURUNO GALLERY
    Tokyo
    LEADERSHIP: Yuka Tsuruno
    ARTISTS: Alexander Gronsky, Maiko Kasai, mamoru, Tomomi Nitta, Yusuke Yamatani
    ESTABLISHED: 2009
    CONTACT: yukatsuruno.com, info@yukatsuruno.com, +81 3 3520 1700

    SINGAPORE

    CHAN HAMPE GALLERIES
    Singapore
    LEADERSHIP: Angeline Chan and Benjamin Hampe
    ARTISTS: Alvin Ong, Belinda Fox, Esmond Loh, Eugene Soh, Safaruddin Abdul Hamid (Dyn)
    ESTABLISHED: 2010
    CONTACT: chanhampegalleries.com, +65 6338 1962

    IKKAN ART INTERNATIONAL
    Singapore
    LEADERSHIP: Ikkan Sanada
    ARTISTS: teamLab, Naoko Tosa, Mikito Ozeki, n+n Corsino, H. Hugh Miller
    ESTABLISHED: 1982
    CONTACT: ikkan-art.com, info@ikkan-art.com, +65 6681 6490

    IPRECIATION
    Singapore
    LEADERSHIP: Helina Chan
    ARTISTS: Gao Xing jian, Ju Ming, Milenko Prvacki, Lee Wen, Tay Bak Chiang
    ESTABLISHED: 1999
    CONTACT: ipreciation.com, enquiry@ipreciation.com, +65 6339 0678

    STPI
    Singapore
    LEADERSHIP: Emi Eu
    ARTISTS: Jumaldi Alfi, Lieko Shiga, Agus Suwage, Natee Utarit, Zhu Wei
    ESTABLISHED: 2002
    CONTACT: stpi.com.sg, stpi@stpi.com.sg, +65 6336 3663

    SOUTH KOREA

    ARARIO GALLERY
    Cheonan and Seoul
    LEADERSHIP: Chang-il Kim
    ARTISTS: Osang Gwon, Yan Heng, Ryu In, Jitish Kallat, Yuan Yuan
    ESTABLISHED: 2002
    INTERNATIONAL LOCATIONS: Shanghai, China
    CONTACT: arariogallery.com, info@arariogallery.com, +82 2 541 5701

    GALLERY HYUNDAI
    Seoul
    LEADERSHIP: Jeong Yeol Cho
    ARTISTS: Sanghwa Chung, Tschang Yeul Kim, Whanki Kim, Ufan Lee, Seok Suh/ Insik Quac
    ESTABLISHED: 1970
    CONTACT: galleryhyundai.com, mail@galleryhyundai.com, +82 2 2287 3500

    GANA ART
    Seoul and Busan
    LEADERSHIP: Jung Lee, Bong Lee, Jang-Eun Lee, Najung Kim
    ARTISTS: Yong-Ho Ji, Mari Kim, Vik Muniz, Richard Pettibone, Hwan-Kwon Yi
    ESTABLISHED: 1983
    CONTACT: ganaart.com, info@ganaart.com, +82 2 720 1020

    HAKGOJAE GALLERY
    Seoul
    LEADERSHIP: Chan-Kyu Woo
    ARTISTS: Hyun Chung, Ian Davenport, Hak-Chul Shin, Liming Tian, Hyeonkyeong You
    ESTABLISHED: 1988
    INTERNATIONAL LOCATIONS: Shangai, China
    CONTACT: hakgojae.com, info@hakgojae.com, +82 2 720 1524-6

    KUKJE GALLERY
    Seoul
    LEADERSHIP: Suzie Kim
    ARTISTS: Ghada Amer, Chang-Sup Chung, Kyung Jeon, Ufan Lee, MeeNa Park
    ESTABLISHED: 1982
    CONTACT: kukjegallery.com, kukje@kukjegallery.com, +8227358449

    PKM GALLERY
    Seoul
    LEADERSHIP: Kyung-mee Park
    ARTISTS: Jonas Dahlberg, Steven Gontarski, Sangbin Im, Ham Jin, Bruce Nauman
    ESTABLISHED: 2001
    CONTACT: pkmgallery.com, info@pkmgallery.com, +8227349467

    PYO GALLERY
    Seoul
    LEADERSHIP: Mi-sun Pyo
    ARTISTS: Kim Oan, Oh Tae Hak, Min Young Park, Im Ju Ri, Youn Myeung Ro
    ESTABLISHED: 1981
    INTERNATIONALLOCATIONS: Beijing, China; Los Angeles, U.S.
    CONTACT: pyoart.com, info@pyogallery.com, +82 2 543 7337

    500 Best Galleries 2015

    0 0

    500 Best Galleries 2015: Mumbai, Tokyo, and Singapore

    A special summer issue of Modern Painters, which will be published in installments on ARTINFO this month, surveys the world’s best galleries, across six continents and 36 countries. Throughout the issue you’ll hear from 50 of the most influential gallery owners and directors, discussing their achievements and envies, the artists they have their eye on, and the regional trends affecting this increasingly international market. Below you’ll find Q&As with several gallerists based in Mumbai, Tokyo, and Singapore. To see other installments from the special issue, click here.

    CHEMOULD PRESCOTT ROAD | MUMBAI, INDIA
    ARTISTS: Ajul Dodiya, Jitish Kallat, Shilpa Gupta, Shakuntala Kulkarni, Mithu Sen
    ESTABLISHED: 1963

    CONTACT:gallerychemould.com art@gallerychemould.com; +91 22 2200 0211

    SHIREEN GANDHY, DIRECTOR/PARTNER

    How did you get your start as a gallerist?
    Having been brought up in the art world and among artists, I suppose there was a proclivity in this direction. I was the youngest among four, so I would tag along with my mother, having been born a year after she began to run the gallery.

    How have you generally discovered new artists? Are there any new discoveries for the gallery whom you’re especially excited about?
    I enjoy the stage when artists are ideating. I am drawn to artists who have a vision that is expressed through process, and I like taking risks in choosing an artist at that moment. I also choose artists based on the fact that there remains a certain homogeneity in my program; however different they might be from the others, one artist must have the ability to play off the other.

    What was your biggest show of the past year?
    We celebrated 50 years of the gallery with five exhibitions under the overarching title “Aesthetic Bind,” curated by Geeta Kapur. “Floating World,” the last one, would probably have been the largest of the exhibitions held last year.

    What’s one show you loved in the past year at a gallery other than your own?
    “As If – III: Country of the Sea,” by CAMP, at the Bhau Daji Lad Museum.

    If cost were no object, what work of art would you have in your bedroom?
    I live with watercolors by Bhupen Khakhar, Anju Dodiya, and Arpita Singh in my bedroom—I am attached to all three and would never let them leave my personal space.

    ***

    GALLERY KOYANAGI| TOKYO, JAPAN
    ARTISTS: Michaël Borremans, Sophie 
Calle, Marlene
 Dumas, Christian
 Marclay, Hiroshi
 Sugimoto
    ESTABLISHED: 1995
    CONTACT: gallerykoyanagi.com mail@gallerykoyanagi.com; +81 3 3561 1896

    ATSUKO KOYANAGI,
 OWNER


    How have you generally
 discovered new artists?

    By chance.


    What’s one show you loved in the past year at a gallery other than your own?
    “Rothko/Sugimoto: Dark Paintings and Seascapes” at 
Pace London.

    Name the last great book you read, art-related or otherwise.
    Diane Arbus Revelations, by Doon Arbus.


    If cost were no object, what work of art would you have in your bedroom?
    An Agnes Martin.

    ***

    FOST GALLERY | SINGAPORE
    ARTISTS: Adeel uz Zafar, Chun Kaifeng, Bovey Lee, Phi Phi Oanh, Grace Tan
    ESTABLISHED: 2006

    CONTACT: 
fostgallery.com, info@fostgallery.com, +65 6694 3080

    STEPHANIE FONG, FOUNDER AND DIRECTOR

    How did you get your start as a gallerist?
    Sheer naïveté.

    How have you generally discovered new artists? Are there any new discoveries for the gallery whom you’re especially excited about?
    I “discover” new artists through observa- tion over a period of time before I decide to work with them. We recently featured solo exhibitions by young Singaporean artists Izziyana Suhaimi, Ashley Yeo, Luke Heng, and Khairullah Rahim as part of the “FOURSIGHT” series. I think each of them has great talent and potential.


    What was your biggest show of the past year?

    “The History of Java,” by Jimmy Ong.

    What’s one show you loved in the past year at a gallery other than your own?
    “Tabled,” by Malaysian photographer Yee I-Lann at Silverlens Galleries.

    What trend do you see happening in your region right now?
    Southeast Asia is a complex region and there are many tangents. I like that there is no one trend.


    What might you be doing if you weren’t a gallerist?
    I might have been an architect.

    If cost were no object, what work of art would you have in your bedroom?
    Any piece of Ru ware from the Northern Song Dynasty.

    500 Best Galeries 2015

    0 0

    500 Best Galleries Worldwide 2015: UK and Ireland

    The art world continues its unprecedented expansion in 2015, with bigger fairs, higher sales, and more exciting talent. But despite the abundance of new ways to show, sell, and discover art, galleries remain at the epicenter of this constantly changing scene. A special summer issue of Modern Painters, which will be published in installments on ARTINFO through next week, surveys the best of them, across six continents and 36 countries. Throughout the issue you’ll also hear from 50 of the most influential gallery owners and directors, discussing their achievements and envies, the artists they have their eye on, and the regional trends affecting this increasingly international market. Below you’ll find the list of the best galleries of the UK and Ireland in 2015. To read previously published installments of this series, click here.  

    UNITED KINGDOM

    ALAN CRISTEA GALLERY
    London
    LEADERSHIP: AlanCristea
    ARTISTS: Tom Wesselmann, Langlands & Bell, Emma Stibbon, Jim Dine, Jan Dibbets, Howard Hodgkin
    ESTABLISHED: 1995
    CONTACT: alancristea.com, info@alancristea.com, +44 20 7439 1866

    ALISON JACQUES GALLERY
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Alison Jacques
    ARTISTS: LygiaClark, Maria Bartuszová, ErikaVerzutti, Takuro Kuwata, Ryan Mosley
    ESTABLISHED: 2004
    CONTACT: alisonjacquesgallery.com, info@alisonjacquesgallery.com, +44 20 7631 4720

    ANNELY JUDA FINE ART
    London
    LEADERSHIP: David Juda
    ARTISTS: David Hockney, Suzanne Treister, Sarah Oppenheimer, Christo & Jeanne-Claude, Mary Martin
    ESTABLISHED: 1960
    CONTACT: annelyjudafineart.co.uk, ajfa@annelyjudafineart.co.uk, +44 20 7629 7578

    BEERS LONDON
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Kurt Beers
    ARTISTS: ATOI, Adam Lee, Janneke Van Leeuwen, Andrew Salgado, Jonathan Zawada
    ESTABLISHED: 2010
    CONTACT: beerslondon.com, info@beerslondon.com, +44 20 7502 9078

    BLAIN|SOUTHERN
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Harry Blain and Graham Southern
    ARTISTS: Michael Joo, Bill Viola, Mat Collishaw, Ali Banisadr, Abdoulaye Konaté
    ESTABLISHED: 2010
    INTERNATIONAL LOCATIONS: Berlin, Germany
    CONTACT: blainsouthern.com, info@blainsouthern.com, +44 20 7493 4492

    CARL KOSTYAL
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Carl Kostyál
    ARTISTS: Ryan Estep, Dora Maurer, John Henderson, Helen Marten, Peter Coffin
    ESTABLISHED: 2010
    INTERNATIONAL LOCATIONS: Stockholm, Sweden
    CONTACT: kostyal.com, helen@kostyal.com, +44 7847 189020

    CARLOS/ISHIKAWA
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Vanessa Carlos
    ARTISTS: Marie Angeletti, Stuart Middleton, Oscar Murillo, Pilvi Takala, Korakrit Arunanondchai
    CONTACT: carlosishikawa.com, gallery@carlosishikawa.com, +44 20 70011744

    CARROLL/FLETCHER
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Jonathon Carroll and Steve Fletcher
    ARTISTS: Eva & Franco Mattes, John Akomfrah, James Clar, Christine Sun Kim, Natascha Sadr Haghighian
    ESTABLISHED: 2012
    CONTACT: carrollfletcher.com, info@carrollfletcher.com, +44 20 7323 6111

    CORVI-MORA
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Tommaso Corvi-Mora
    ARTISTS: Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster, Roger Hiorns, Jennifer Packer, Imran Qureshi, Lynette Yiadom-Boakye
    ESTABLISHED: 2000
    CONTACT: corvi-mora.com, tcm@corvi-mora.com, +44 20 7840 9111

    FRITH STREET GALLERY
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Jane Hamlyn
    ARTISTS: Tacita Dean, Marlene Dumas, Callum Innes, Cornelia Parker, Thomas Schütte
    ESTABLISHED: 1989
    CONTACT: frithstreetgallery.com, info@frithstreetgallery.com, +44 20 7494 1550

    GAZELLI ART HOUSE
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Mila Askarova
    ARTISTS: Niyaz Najafov, Do Ho Suh, Jane McAdam Freud, Recycle Group, Charlotte Colbert
    ESTABLISHED: 2003
    INTERNATIONAL LOCATIONS: Baku, Azerbaijan
    CONTACT: gazelliarthouse.com, info@gazelliarthouse.com, +44 20 7491 8816

    GREENGRASSI GALLERY
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Cornelia Grassi
    ARTISTS: Tomma Abts, Janice Kerbel, Vincent Fecteau, Frances Stark, Alessandro Pessoli
    ESTABLISHED: 1997
    CONTACT: greengrassi.com, info@greengrassi.com, +44 20 7840 9101

    HALES GALLERY
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Paul Hedge and Paul Maslin
    ARTISTS: Adam Dant, Carolee Schneemann, Rachael Champion, Frank Bowling, Sebastiaan Bremer
    ESTABLISHED: 1992
    CONTACT: halesgallery.com, info@halesgallery.com, +44 20 7033 1938

    HANNAHBARRY
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Hannah Barry
    ARTISTS: Mohammed Qasim Ashfaq, Marie Jacotey, James Capper, James Balmforth, Shaun McDowell
    ESTABLISHED: 2008
    CONTACT: hannahbarry.com, hello@hannahbarry.com, +44 20 7732 5453

    HERALD ST
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Nicky Verber and Ash L’Ange
    ARTISTS: Christina Mackie, Oliver Payne, Donald Urquhart, Nicole Wermers,Ida Ekblad
    ESTABLISHED: 2005
    CONTACT: heraldst.com, mail@heraldst.com, +44 20 7168 2566

    INGLEBY GALLERY
    Edinburgh
    LEADERSHIP: Florence and Richard Ingleby
    ARTISTS: Richard Forster, Ian Hamilton Finlay, Peter Liversidge, Callum Innes, Katie Paterson
    ESTABLISHED: 1998
    CONTACT: inglebygallery.com, info@inglebygallery.com, +44 131 556 4441

    JOSH LILLEY
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Josh Lilley
    ARTISTS: Analia Saban, Christof Mascher, Rebecca Nassauer, Vicky Wright, Belén, Matt Lipps, Peter Linde Busk
    ESTABLISHED: 2009
    CONTACT: joshlilleygallery.com, info@joshlilley.com, +44 20 7580 5677

    KATE MACGARRY
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Kate MacGarry
    ARTISTS: Peter McDonald, Patricia Treib, Tiago Carneiro da Cunha, Renee So, Matt Bryans
    ESTABLISHED: 2002
    CONTACT: katemacgarry.com, mail@katemacgarry.com, +44 20 7613 0515

    KRISTIN HJELLEGJERDE
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Kristin Hjellegjerde
    ARTISTS: Dawit Abebe, Martine Poppe, Soheila Sokhanvari, Sebastian Helling, Chris Agnew, Richard Stone
    ESTABLISHED: 2012
    CONTACT: kristinhjellegjerde.com, info@kristinhjellegjerde.com, +44 20 8875 0110

    LAURA BARTLETT GALLERY
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Laura Bartlett and Madeleine Martin
    ARTISTS: Marie Lund, Martin Skauen, Cyprien Gaillard, Nina Beier, Harrell Fletcher
    ESTABLISHED: 2006
    CONTACT: laurabartlettgallery.com, info@laurabartlettgallery.com, +44 20 3487 0507

    LIMONCELLO
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Rebecca May Marston
    ARTISTS: Jack Strange, Kate Owens, Jesse Wine, Bedwyr Williams, MattGolden
    ESTABLISHED: 2007
    CONTACT: limoncellogallery.co.uk, limoncello@limoncellogallery.co.uk, +44 20 7923 7033

    LISSON GALLERY
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Nicholas Logsdail, Alex Logsdail, and Greg Hilty
    ARTISTS: Ai Weiwei, Allora & Calzadilla, Tony Cragg, Carmen Herrera, Anish Kapoor
    ESTABLISHED: 1967
    INTERNATIONAL LOCATIONS: Milan, Italy; New York, U.S.
    CONTACT: lissongallery.com, contact@lissongallery.com, +44 20 7724 2739

    MARY MARY
    Glasgow
    LEADERSHIP: Hannah Robinson
    ARTISTS: Alistair Frost, Aleana Egan, Alexis Teplin, Jonathan Gardner, Lorna Macintyre
    ESTABLISHED: 2006
    CONTACT: marymarygallery.co.uk, info@marymarygallery.co.uk, +44 141 226 2257

    MAUREEN PALEY
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Maureen Paley
    ARTISTS: Liam Gillick, Maureen Gallace, Hamish Fulton, Wolfgang Tillmans, Kaye Donachie
    ESTABLISHED: 1984
    CONTACT: maureenpaley.com, info@maureenpaley.com, +44 20 7729 4112

    HAMILTONS
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Tim Jefferies
    ARTISTS: Annie Leibovitz, Helmut Newton, Irving Penn, Kobi Israel, Herb Ritts
    ESTABLISHED: 1985
    CONTACT: hamiltonsgallery.com, art@hamiltonsgallery.com, +44 20 7734 7760

    PILAR CORRIAS
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Pilar Corrias
    ARTISTS: Leigh Ledare, Ken Okiishi, Rachel Rose, John Skoog, Shahzia Sikander
    ESTABLISHED: 2008
    CONTACT: pilarcorrias.com, info@pilarcorrias.com, +44 20 7323 7000

    PIPPY HOULDSWORTH GALLERY
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Pippy Houldsworth
    ARTISTS: Francesca DiMattio, Yuken Teruya, Shezad Dawood, Martha Rosler, Yinka Shonibare
    CONTACT: houldsworth.co.uk, gallery@houldsworth.co.uk, +44 20 7734 7760

    SEVENTEEN
    London
    LEADERSHIP: David Hoyland and Nicholas Letchford
    ARTISTS: David Raymond Conroy, Sophie Michael, Sachin Kaeley, Jimmy Merris, Karin Lehmann
    ESTABLISHED: 2005
    CONTACT: seventeengallery.com, info@seventeengallery.com, +44 20 7249 7789

    SIMON LEE
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Simon Lee
    ARTISTS: Toby Ziegler, Josephine Pryde, George Condo, Sherrie Levine, Angela Bulloch
    ESTABLISHED: 2002
    INTERNATIONAL LOCATIONS: New York, U.S.; Hong Kong, China
    CONTACT: simonleegallery.com, info@simonleegallery.com, +44 20 7491 0100

    SKARSTEDT
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Per Skarstedt
    ARTISTS: Eric Fischl, Mike Kelley, Yves Klein, Juan Muñoz, Franz West
    ESTABLISHED: 1994
    INTERNATIONAL LOCATIONS: New York, U.S.
    CONTACT: skartstedt.com, london@skarstedt.com, +44 20 7499 5200

    SPRUETH MAGERS
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Philomene Magers and Monika Sprüth
    ARTISTS: John Baldessari, Bernd & Hilla Becher, Barbara Kruger, Cindy Sherman, Alexandre Singh
    ESTABLISHED: 1983
    INTERNATIONAL LOCATIONS: Berlin and Cologne, Germany; Los Angeles, U.S.
    CONTACT: spruethmagers.com, info@spruethmagers.com, +44 20 7408 1613

    STEPHEN FRIEDMAN
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Stephen Friedman
    ARTISTS: Juan Araujo, Robert Buck, Jim Hodges, Ged Quinn, Luiz Zerbini
    ESTABLISHED: 1995
    CONTACT: stephenfriedman.com, info@stephenfriedman.com, +44 20 7494 1434

    STUART SHAVE/MODERN ART
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Stuart Shave
    ARTISTS: Karla Black, Jacqueline Humphries, Eva Rothschild, Steven Shearer, Richard Tuttle
    ESTABLISHED: 1998
    CONTACT: modernart.net, info@modernart.net, +44 20 7299 7950

    THE APPROACH
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Jake Miller and Emma Robertson
    ARTISTS: Allison Katz, Magali Reus, Lisa Oppenheim, John Stezaker, Jack Lavender
    ESTABLISHED: 1997
    CONTACT: theapproach.co.uk, info@theapproach.co.uk, +44 20 8983 3878

    THE MAYOR GALLERY
    London
    LEADERSHIP: James Mayor
    ARTISTS: Otto Piene, Anne Appleby, Heinz Mack, Sylvia Heider, Dadamaino
    ESTABLISHED: 1925
    CONTACT: mayorgallery.com, info@mayorgallery.com, +44 20 7734 3558

    THOMAS DANE GALLERY
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Thomas Dane, Martine d’Anglejan-Chatillon, and François Chantala
    ARTISTS: Steve McQueen, Michael Landy, Glenn Ligon, Abraham Cruzvillegas, Cecily Brown
    ESTABLISHED: 2004
    CONTACT: thomasdanegallery.com, info@thomasdanegallery.com, +44 20 7925 2505

    TIMOTHY TAYLOR
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Tim Taylor
    ARTISTS: Philip Guston, Gabriel de la Mora, Lee Friedlander, Mai-Thu Perret, Lucy Williams
    ESTABLISHED: 1996
    CONTACT: timothytaylorgallery.com, mail@timothytaylor.com, +44 20 7409 3344

    VICTORIA MIRO
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Victoria Miro
    ARTISTS: Doug Aitken, Peter Doig, Alice Neel, Chris Ofili, Celia Paul
    ESTABLISHED: 1985
    CONTACT: victoria-miro.com, info@victoria-miro.com, +44 20 7336 8109

    VIGO
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Toby Clarke
    ARTISTS: Ibrahim El-Salahi, Leonardo Drew, Kadar Brock, Isabel Yellin, Marcus Harvey
    ESTABLISHED: 2011
    CONTACT: vigogallery.com, info@vigogallery.com, +44 20 7493 3492

    WHITE CUBE
    London
    LEADERSHIP: Jay Jopling
    ARTISTS: Jake & Dinos Chapman, Anselm Kiefer, Virginia Overton, Raqib Shaw, Zhang Huan
    ESTABLISHED: 1993
    INTERNATIONAL LOCATIONS: Hong Kong, China; São Paulo, Brazil
    CONTACT: whitecube.com, enquiries@whitecube.com, +44 20 7930 5373

    IRELAND

    GREEN ON RED
    Dublin
    LEADERSHIP: Jerome O Drisceoil
    ARTISTS: Mary FitzGerald, Ronan McCrea, Arno Kramer, Niamh McCann, Nigel Rolfe
    ESTABLISHED: 1997
    CONTACT: greenonredgallery.com, info@greenonredgallery.com, +353 87 245 4282

    KERLIN GALLERY
    Dublin
    LEADERSHIP: David Fitzgerald, Darragh Hogan, and John Kennedy
    ARTISTS: Phillip Allen, Maureen Gallace, Guggi, Sean Scully, Liliane Tomasko
    ESTABLISHED: 1988
    CONTACT: kerlingallery.com, gallery@kerlin.ie, +35316709093

    MOTHER’S TANKSTATION
    Dublin
    LEADERSHIP: Finola Jones
    ARTISTS: UriAran, Nina Canell, Cui Jie, Mairead O’hEocha, Yuri Pattison
    ESTABLISHED: 2006
    CONTACT: motherstankstation.com, gallery@motherstankstation.com, +353 1 671 7654

    500 Best Galleries 2015

    0 0

    Adam Goodrum’s Translucent Houses Win 2015 Rigg Design Prize

    The National Gallery of Victoria has announced Adam Goodrum as the winner of the 2015 Rigg Design Prize, the most prestigious accolade for contemporary furniture and object design in Australia. Goodrum was awarded the $30,000 prize for his work “Unfolding” which comprises a series of translucent folding house structures that reflect a luminous array of colourful images across the gallery walls.

    Goodrum has established himself as a rapidly rising star of the Australian and international design scenes with his inventive products and furniture. The Sydney-based designer work has been exhibited at a number of prestigious institutions including the Design Museum, London; Milan Triennale; Design Museum, Belgium; Philadelphia Museum of Art, USA; and Bagatti Valsecchi Museum, Italy.

    Established in 1994, this year the triennial invitational prize expanded beyond Victoria for the first time to include designers from across Australia. The Rigg Design Prize 2015 invited seven designers to exhibit bodies of work that communicated their practice and ideas. Gijs Bakker (Co-Founder, Droog Design) and Wava Carpenter (Former Curator, Design Miami) judged the Rigg Design Prize for 2015.

    The judges commented, “Adam’s work proves that design has the potential for the unexpected and the new. Unfolding is very exciting, pushing the boundaries of what design can be with its dreamy, hazy and poetic atmosphere. We hope that the public will be as surprised and delighted by Adam’s work as we were.”

    The exhibition of all seven designers’ works as at the NGV from September 18 until February 7, 2016. Separate, immersive spaces will highlight the exceptional practice of each designer: Adam Goodrum (NSW); Brodie Neill (TAS); Daniel Emma (SA); Kate Rohde (VIC); Khai Liew (SA); Korban Flaubert (NSW); Koskela (NSW) in collaboration with the weavers of Elcho Island Arts (NT).

     Designer Adam Goodrum standing in front of Unfolding 2015

    0 0

    500 Best Galleries 2015: London and Glasgow

    A special summer issue of Modern Painters, which will be published in installments on ARTINFO this month, surveys the world’s best galleries, across six continents and 36 countries. Throughout the issue you’ll hear from 50 of the most influential gallery owners and directors, discussing their achievements and envies, the artists they have their eye on, and the regional trends affecting this increasingly international market. Below you’ll find Q&As with several gallerists based in London and Glasgow. To see other installments from the special issue, click here.

    HAUSER & WIRTH |
 LONDON AND SOMERSET, U.K.
    ARTISTS: Paul McCarthy, Jason Rhoades, Hans Arp, Fabio Mauri, Louise Bourgeois, Phyllida Barlow, Pipilotti Rist
    ESTABLISHED: 1992
    INTERNATIONAL LOCATIONS: New York and Los Angeles, U.S.; Zurich, Switzerland
    CONTACT: 
hauserwirth.com london@hauserwirth.com; +44 20 7287 2300

    JAMES KOCH, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

    How did you get your start as a gallerist?
    
Initially I trained and practiced as a lawyer, but I got involved in the art world profession- ally because art has always been an important element in my life. The transition was a natural one. During my studies, I was lucky enough to work as an assistant to the directors at the Zurich Opera and at Covent Garden in London. In my capacity as a lawyer, I advised private individuals on legal issues relating to the management of their financial portfolios and their art holdings. My first role in the arts was as managing director at Fondation Beyeler, where I was finally able to unite both of my major interests.


    How have you generally discovered new artists? Are there any new discoveries for the gallery whom you’re especially excited about?
    
This is usually a very organic process for 
us as a gallery, as well as the result of Iwan and Manuela Wirth developing a personal relationship with an artist. An interesting new artist we have recently taken on is the estate of Fabio Mauri—it’s always exciting when you can take an artist who’s been under the radar for some years and encourage a critical reappraisal of their work today. We were also thrilled earlier this year to begin working with the Mike Kelley Founda- tion for the Arts.


    What was your biggest show of the past year?
    
In Zurich we opened a joint exhibition of works by Alexander Calder and Francis Picabia. It’s the first exhibition to draw a direct comparison between these two legendary artists—we look at the theme
 of transparency and how this idea of
positive and negative space manifests itself in the work of both artists. Calder and Picabia both made unpredictable shifts in vocabulary during their careers, and because of this, their work remains relevant and energized today.

    What’s one show you loved in the past year at agallery other than your own?

    For me, Guillermo Kuitca’s surreal and inventive group presentation “Les Habitants” at the Fondation Cartier
in Paris was a real revelation. Kuitca made some surprising connections to artists and projects from the Foundation’s history, and it was brilliantly realized using a concept from David Lynch as a backdrop.


    What trends do you see happening in your region right now?
    
I’m very excited to see the effect that Manifesta 11
will have on the cultural scene in Zurich when it comes here next year.


    What might you be doing if you weren’t a gallerist?
    My career has already undergone a major change as I started out as a lawyer. I’ve always been open to the
next new challenge and taken opportunities as they come, slipping in through open doors, you might say. I only joined Hauser & Wirth last year and look forward to growing here—taking on the challenges and grand ambitions lying ahead for the gallery.


    Name the last great book you read, art-related or otherwise.
    
I just finished the incredible Over Her Dead Body by Elisabeth Bronfen. It deals with the connections between death and femininity, using examples from art and culture as far-ranging as Snow White and Carmen. It really resonated for me with the work of Marlene Dumas, Gaugin, or our very own Paul McCarthy, who has been exploring the themes and symbolism of the Snow White character through his monumental ongoing WS project for some years.

    If cost were no object, what work of art would you have in your bedroom?

    No question: a Louise Bourgeois sculpture. Perhaps a late work that deals with some of the psychological impact of her insomnia and the subconscious—it’s just too perfect for a bedroom. Or if I were feeling experimental, I might commission a Zhang Enli Space Painting to cover the entire walls and ceiling of the bedroom!

    ***

    SADIE COLES HQ | LONDON, U.K.
    ARTISTS: Sarah Lucas, Urs Fischer, John Currin, Elizabeth Peyton, Helen Marten

    ESTABLISHED: 1997

    CONTACT: sadiecoles.com info@sadiecoles.com; +44 20 7493 8611

    SADIE COLES, GALLERIST

    How did you get your start as a gallerist?
    I worked first for a museum, the Arnolfini in Bristol,
and then for Anthony d’Offay Gallery in London as exhibitions director.

    How have you generally discovered new artists? Are there any new discoveries for the gallery whom you’re especially excited about?
    I ask artists to recommend other artists, I listen to the curators I admire, I go to as many shows as I can, I trust my instincts. Over the last two years we have taken
on a new group of artists—a refreshing expansion of the program to respond to my interests and also to the new spaces we have.

    What was your biggest show of the past year?
    Sometimes the smallest gesture has the biggest impact. The most moving has been Sarah Lucas at the British Pavilion in Venice, because it is a significant marker in our long and very special relationship.

    What’s one show you loved in the past year at a gallery other than your own?

    That would have to be Laura Owens at Capitain Petzel in Berlin. Jealous.

    What trends do you see happening in your region right now?
    
There is much talk of the death of the gallery system in favor of agent or auction house representation—but hey, galleries have always been part agent, so I don’t see things changing too much. Artists still need nonmuseum spaces to debut new work, soundboard conversations, and act as an interface between themselves and clients.

    If cost were no object, what work of art would you have in your bedroom?
    
Gilbert & George’s Singing Sculpture.

    ***

    THE MODERN INSTITUTE | GLASGOW, U.K.
    ARTISTS: Martin Boyce, Urs Fischer, Luke Fowler, Monika Sosnowska, Cathy Wilkes
    ESTABLISHED: 1997

    CONTACT: themoderninstitute.com +44 141 248 3711

    TOBY WEBSTER, OWNER

    How did you get your start as a gallerist?
    
I found a space for £3,000 a year in the center of Glasgow. A group of artists helped me to renovate the building, and then we started. I didn’t know where 
it was going, but I knew it was essential! Andrew Hamilton joined the gallery in 2005 and is now a partner and integral to the business.


    How have you generally discovered new artists? Are there any new discoveries for the gallery whom you’re especially excited about?
    Through studio visits, art college degree shows, and solo public shows. I’m 
really excited about Nicolas Party, whose work is varied and moving on—it’s
 very alive. I first met Nicolas through 
Jim Lambie.

    What was your biggest show of the past year?
    
They’re all important, from big shows to small shows. Richard Wright at the gallery in summer last year was pretty incredible. He worked with the York Glaziers Trust to produce four intricately designed skylights with handmade blown glass and leading.

    What’s one show you loved in the past year at a gallery other than your own?
    Martino Gamper’s “Design is a State of Mind” at the Serpentine Sackler Gallery in London in spring of 2014. It shows his ability as a curator and an incredible designer.

    What trends do you see happening in your region right now?
    It all turns around so quickly, so I’ve always kept my head down and got on with what I feel is great.


    What might you be doing if you weren’t a gallerist?
    Probably I’d be an architect or a designer.

    Name the last great book you read, art-related or otherwise.
    Orbital, by Iain Sinclair.


    If cost were no object, what work of art would you have in your bedroom?
    Paul Thek’s Hippie. Since it’s fantasy.

    500 Best Galleries 2015

    0 0

    Investors Anticipate Hirst Revival, Kansas Gets Koch-Funded Arts Center, and More

    — Betting Big on Hirst Comeback: Swashbuckling dealers, collectors, and advisers are wagering on a Damien Hirst resurgence to follow the October opening of his new free museum, Newport Street Gallery, in south London, which will present his private collection of works by other artists. Their concerted effort to revive Hirst’s market could catapult the artist’s fallen prices, which suffered in the post-recession years. Jose Mugrabi, a New York dealer with a 120-piece Hirst collection, just bought $33-million dollar work off the artist a few months ago. “I’m telling anybody who will listen to buy him because Damien Hirst is here to stay,” art advisor Kim Heirston. This might prove a good study of the contemporary art market caprices, controlled by a few art-world elite, the Journal’s Kelly Crow suggests. [WSJ, Art Market Monitor]

    — Koch Brothers “Giving Back” to Kansas: The Koch brothers, who made their billions in Kansas with a little family business called Koch Industries, are pouring $10.5 million into the Wichita Center for the Arts, which will move to new premises. Controversy often follows their giving — some scientists have asked that museums reject David Koch’s money because of his support of climate change denial, for instance — but so far, no signs of that. The new Wichita campus will include a performing arts theatre, art gallery, and education spaces. [LAT]

    Incoming DIA Director to Raise Endowment: Amid the noise surrounding news of Salvador Salort-Pons’s promotion at the Detroit Institute of Arts (DIA) yesterday, we missed an important comment by the incoming director regarding the scale of his financial ambitions. In an interview with reporter and blogger Lee Rosenbaum, Salort-Pons admitted that the previous endowment target of $400 million, floated during the “grand bargain” talks that saved the museum’s collection from Detroit’s bankruptcy creditors, is out. The new figure is $600 to 700 million, which is in line with comparable endowments at institutions of DIA’s size (when the $400 million figure was first floated, the New York Times observed that the Cleveland Museum of Art’s endowment was $700 million). For DIA, that’s a long way to go; the endowment currently stands at $124.4 million. [CultureGrrl]

    A Walk to Remember: Art news monopolists Ai Weiwei and Anish Kapoor took a hike across London yesterday. But it wasn’t any old stroll: their eight-mile journey was done in solidarity with the refugee crisis. [TAN]

    Getty Lands Tuchman Archive: The Getty Research Institute has acquired records from Maurice Tuchman’s storied tenure as curator at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) from 1964-1994. The archive comprises a range of materials, from correspondence to audio and video, and relates to such artists as Edward Kienholz, Claes Oldenburg, Jasper Johns, and R. B. Kitaj. [Artforum, Artdaily]

    Hirschhorn Museum Doubles Board: The Washington, DC institution has expanded its board to 21 members, seven of whom are based in the capital. “In the first year of Melissa Chiu’s tenure as director, fundraising is up 50 percent, board support has increased 75 percent and most important, museum attendance is up 27 percent,” board chair Peggy Burnet said. [Washington Post]

    An unidentified vandal has defaced Munich’s Haus der Kunst with anti-Semitic graffiti. [ArtnetBayerische Rundfunk]

    Following the Honolulu Art Museum provenance feud, Joel Alexander Green has lodged a countersuit against the museum for breaching contract and damages. [ARTnews]

    — Collector Nicolas Berggruen has launched Berggruen Philosophy and Culture Center in Los Angeles, and announced a $1 million philosophy prize. Political scientist Francis Fukuyama, writer Alain de Botton, and journalist Fareed Zakaria are on the advisory board, among others. [ArtnetBerggruen Institute]

     

    Investors Anticipate Hirst Revival, Kansas Gets Koch-Funded Arts Center

    0 0


    0 0

    25 Most Collectible Midcareer Artists: Marco Maggi

    In its September issue, Art+Auction compiled a list of the 25 most collectible midcareer artists working today. This month, ARTINFO will publish one installment from the feature per day. Click here to read Art+Auction editor-in-chief Eric Bryant’s introduction to the list. To see all the installments published so far, click here.

    Marco Maggi  |  b. 1957  |  United States

    Evocative of circuit boards, aerial views of cities, or biological systems, the drawings, installations, and sculptures that the Uruguay-born, New York–based Maggi creates require the viewer to slow down and reflect on the mundane nature of the materials he has employed such as office supplies, aluminum foil, and X-Acto knife etched mirrors.

    For the current Venice Biennale, the artist created Global Myopia, a work consisting 10,000 self-adhesive elements that he carefully folded and stuck onto the walls of the Uruguay Pavilion over the three months leading up to the event.

    While artist prices often soar on the heels of a Venice presentation, Maggi’s gallerists—Josée Bienvenu in New York, Galeria Nara Roesler in São Paulo, Sicardi Gallery in Houston, Galería Cayón in Madrid, and Xippas Gallery in Punta del Este, Geneva, Paris, and Montevideo—project more measured growth. Smaller pieces priced at $600 a decade ago now command $10,000. Larger works go for up to $100,000.

    But sticker shock has never been the artist’s goal, says Bienvenu. “What matters most to him and to us is that his commercial evolution be completely in parallel with his academic recognition.” MoMA, the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, and the Whitney Museum of American Art are among the vaunted institutions that have acquired Maggi’s works, which take center stage on September 5 at Xippas in Paris and on September 10 at Josée Bienvenu. On October 31, Espacio Monitor in Caracas debuts a solo show of his work, which will be followed by a November 14 opening at Nara Roesler. 

    Most Collectible Artists 2015

    0 0

    Nine Under-the-Radar Films to See at the New York Film Festival

    On September 25, the 53rd annual New York Film Festival opens at Lincoln Center. And once again, it’s a cinema lover’s dream, offering almost too many films to process. With the correct scheduling, you can see the cream of experimental cinema in the Projections sidebar one day and on the following take in Michael Moore’s latest documentary (“Where to Invade Next”) or the final film from Manoel de Oliveira (“Visit, or Memories and Confessions”) or a restored version of Luchino Visconti’s “Rocco and his Brothers.” The possibilities are endless.

    If you’ve been paying attention, you’ve probably heard about the main attractions at the festival. The big show opens with the world premiere of “The Walk,” Robert Zemeckis’s 3-D biopic about Philippe Petit, who, among other amazing feats, tightrope walked from one Twin Tower to the other. The highly anticipated “Steve Jobs,” directed by Danny Boyle and written by Aaron Sorkin,  is the centerpiece of the festival, which closes with the premiere of “Miles Ahead,” Don Cheadle’s long-in-the-works biopic of jazz-legend Miles Davis. Packed in between are new works from Steven Spielberg (“Bridge of Spies”), Todd Haynes (“Carol”), Paul Thomas Anderson (“Junun”), Noah Baumbach (“De Palma”), and a smattering of festival favorites.

    We’ll leave the task of discussing those entries to another time and to other critics. Our purpose here is to present nine films that, with so many to check out during the festival, might fly under your radar, so to speak, but are definitely worth checking out. Click on the slideshow to see our picks.

    New York Film Festival 2015

    0 0

    Architecture on the Catwalk: Designers Look to Frank Lloyd Wright, Le Corbusier, Maya Lin, and More

    The link between fashion and architecture was strengthened by a cadre of New York-based designers for the Spring-Summer 2016 season, who looked to great works by early- to mid-20th century architects and interior designers for inspiration.

    At Creatures of Comfort, Jade Lai riffed on La Cité Radieuse, a Brutalist residential enclave in Marseille designed by Le Corbusier (Charles Edouard Jeanneret), infusing the colors of coastal France with the stylish sensibility of the architect’s close collaborators, namely his cousin Pierre Jeanneret and Charlotte Perriand.

    Breezy summer suits, flowing dresses, off-shoulder knits and colorful tweeds were mixed with denim and ochre ensembles that evoked Perriand’s furniture, while custom prints on Italian cottons alluded to windows of the Brutalist buildings.

    Jason Wu also summoned the spirit of Jeanneret, infusing his signature American sportswear with an emphasis on ruffles, lightness, and glamour. “I was inspired by midcentury furniture, Jeanneret and pictures by [photographer] John Rawlings; [there’s] something elegant and glamorous about spring,” said Wu.

    Beginning with a teal trench with an exaggerated collar of raw edges, the luxurious upholstery-inflected collection progressed into russet waistcoats, ochre wrap-skirts and black lace and tiered ruffles of vibrant florals.

    Phillip Lim looked to architect Maya Lin for his anniversary show — his label 3.1 Phillip Lim turns 10 this year — and riffed on the popular-for-spring “stop and smell the flowers” theme. A self-confessed “huge fan” of Lin’s work, particularly the Wavefield at Storm King and the war memorial in D.C., Lim’s pieces evoked sculptures in a garden, with breezy, black and white prints, neutrals and greens. Structure came by way of black leather tunics, nude satin drawstring jackets, while plays on masculine-versus-feminine were seen in pinstriped ruffled tops and asymmetrical skirts.

    Opening Ceremony invoked the iconic structures of architect Frank Lloyd Wright, with Fallingwater being a large influence, manifesting as skirts assembled from horizontal strips of cloth, and Bonsai trees embroidered onto charmeuse mini-dresses in beige. Co-founders Carol Lim and Huberto Leon also silkscreened images of Wright’s colorful stained glass panels for the Avery Coonley Playhouse onto a series of T-shirts, hoodies and kaftans.

    Over at Delpozo, designer Josep Font’s women invoked Federico García Lorca’s Gypsy Ballads and Emilie Flöge, the Austrian fashion designer who was the life companion of the painter Gustav Klimt. Font’s unabashedly fairy-tale sensibility toward Spanish couture incorporated deliciously crafty elements, like metallic fringe, appliqué flowers, and pastel-hued metallic scrollwork evoking Spanish tiles. Originally trained as an architect, Font’s penchant for volume manifested in exaggerated ruffles at the hip, and voluminous curtain-like metallic jacquard skirts.

    The pièce de resistance was a ball gown studded entirely in multi-colored, metal-studded polka dots, which, despite the collection’s folkloric influence, strongly evoked the architectural masterpiece that is Antoni Gaudi’s Parc Guell, and the vibrant mosaics within, in Barcelona.

    To see these looks, click on the slideshow.

    Jason Wu, Delpozo and 3.1 Phillip Lim Spring-Summer 2016

    0 0

    At Expo Chicago, New Discoveries and Unexpected Deals

    Expo Chicago, held in the almost charmingly down-at-heels Navy Pier, continues to be a solid contender on the never-ending art-fair circuit, drawing blue-chip galleries like David Zwirner and White Cube while giving ample attention, via its Exposure roster, to pluckier talent — which means revelatory finds at price points in the low thousands.    

    My favorite fair moments are among the least bombastic. You might not notice at first, but you enter this year’s edition by walking beneath a sculptural reconstruction of the wing of a RQ-1 Predator drone, a strikingly ominous work by Chicago-based artist Iñigo Manglano-Ovalles that is part of the fair’s curated In/Situ program. New York’s Koenig & Clinton has a stunning wall of 10-by-8-inch paintings of the same water glass by 84-year-old Peter Dreher, from a 5,000-work series that the German artist began in 1974; some of the images were composed during the day, some at night, creating subtle tonal variations in the serially repeated composition. The paintings are priced at $7,000 each, regardless of the year they were made;  the gallery also has two graphite drawings of the glass, something of a rarity in the artist’s practice and therefore priced at around $10,000. Nearby, 1301PE, of Los Angeles, inadvertently strikes a chord with Dreher’s quiet spareness with its pairing of Paul Winstanley’s spare paintings of empty seminar rooms and art studios with Uta Barth’s similarly minimalist photographs of light-and-shadow-soaked interiors. Jessica Silverman Gallery of San Francisco built its booth around a1984 sculpture by London-based Israeli artist Amikam Toren, “Actuality 3,” which was made by gently eroding the wooden frame of a thrift-store-purchased chair until it seems balanced precariously in space. This is the focal point of a display that includes three much more aggressive Toren pieces: A series titled “Hand in Glove” finds the artist obliterating one leather glove from each of three differently colored pairs in a coffee grinder, mixing the resulting mush with acrylic medium to form a DIY paint, and smearing this on three canvases in violent, abstract squiggles; one of the remaining, undamaged gloves is placed in front of each painting (Toren is a big fan of Gutai, Silverman noted). These works are complemented by mixed-media paintings from Hugh-Scott Douglas, a fur-coat-draped-chair sculpture by Nicole Wermers, and various chairs and assemblages by Julian Hoeber; the latter’s wood-and-stretched-string wall sculpture is particularly striking, achieving a significant presence without shouting.

    Bortolami wins points for a conceit that is simple without being hopelessly hokey: All the works in the gallery’s booth engage in some way with the color blue (maybe someone has been crushing on Maggie Nelson?): An aqua-leaning Barbara Kasten photograph hangs near a Daniel Buren wall painting and a Richard Aldrich blue monochrome. Rounding things out are blue-imbued pieces by Will Benedict and Tom Burr and a cerulean-glazed-ceramic sculpture by Nicolás Guagnini, resembling a hive of serpentine cocks, that manages to give the grotesque a patina of luxury. Kayne Griffin Corcoran’s install is also notable for some adept juxtapositions. On one wall, a David Lynch drawing sidles up to a Joseph Cornell that is partnered with a recent sculpture by Rosha Yaghmai shaped like a heavily stylized doorframe and incorporating both “Aztec Secret healing clay” and Miracle-Gro. San Francisco’s Anglim Gilbert Gallery has a Suprematist-influenced canvas by Clare Rojas, as well as a 1972 Joan Brown, “Adventures of a Woman #2,” that looks a lot like Rojas’s paintings did before she moved into abstraction.

    Local exhibitors make a strong showing at the fair. Kavi Gupta Gallery has plenty of real estate to play with and takes full advantage, mixing photographs by Mickalene Thomas with paintings by Tony Tasset, Angel Otero, Jose Lerma, McArthur Binion, and Roxy Paine, as well as three small everything-and-the-kitchen-sink sculptures by Jessica Stockholder. Rhona Hoffman Gallery is all over the place, in a good way: a folded-paper piece by Sol Lewitt and some Gordon Matta-Clark photographs; three of Natalie Frank’s “Grimm’s Fairy Tales” drawings, previously seen at the Drawing Center in New York, and a massive, aggressive Leon Golub painting of two men caught mid-riot. Volume Gallery spotlights photographs by Daniel Arnold, most of them taken on the sly; two that stand out are a picture of the cluttered interior of the Billy Goat Tavern and an uncomfortably angled portrait of a young woman reading “Lolita” on the beach at Fort Tilden. Brand-new Chicago gallery Patron makes good use of a cubbyhole-size booth in the fair’s “Exposure” section, displaying works on paper by Kadar Brock cheek by jowl with sculptures (in steel, brass, plaster, and other materials) by Alex Chitty.

    Some other highlights on my personal fantasy shopping list: collage, colored-pencil, and ink works by Megan Greene, priced relatively modestly at one-year-old Chicago gallery Regards ($8,000 for large works; $2,200 for small ones); Ben Patterson’s painted-ceramic “Pavilion” sculptures, which resemble utopian models for South American government buildings in the 1950s, at Ratio 3 (between $5,000 and $7,000); gender-straddling, superheroic crochet pieces by Caroline Wells Chandler, which crawl up the walls of Roberto Paradise's booth; Kate Steciw’s photo-sculpture hybrids, which hang like dangerous blades in Higher Picture’s booth; a large multipanel abstraction by Austrian painter Markus Bacher, at Susanne Vielmetter Los Angeles Projects; a set of 67 woodcuts in a carved-wood box by Tal R, in an edition of 18, at Rene Schmitt Druckgraphik, a great choice, if you have a spare $30,000 under your couch cushions. I also seriously covet Mier Gallery’s graphite drawings (around $3,000) by Cologne-based Jan-Ole Schiemann, which, culling their imagery from abstract shapes and forms in 1930s Bettie Boop movies, have the energy of comic-book pages with all the players removed and only the explosive remnants of the action left behind. (Large paintings mining the same left-field source material and incorporating washes of variously colored ink on raw canvas are priced between $7,000 and $16,000.)

    If this sounds like a lot to take in, it is. For a respite, I suggest hiding out in Lisson Gallery’s booth for a while. There you’ll find one of Stanley Whitney’s kinetic paintings—a wobbly grid of color-gushing squares—next to a Haroon Mirza sound sculpture that incorporates a solar panel. The Mirza’s noise is all glitchy sputter, completely at odds with Whitney’s graceful splurge of pigment, and something in that disjunction might provide the total mental reset needed to return to this sprawling, and rewarding, fair.

    expo chicago

    0 0
  • 09/18/15--12:47: Laure Prouvost in Berlin

  • 0 0

    VIDEO: Jitish Kallat on "The Infinite Episode" at Galerie Daniel Templon

    Two years after his first solo exhibition in Paris, Mumbai-based artist Jitish Kallat returns to the French capital with "The Infinite Episode," bringing together an assembly of conceptual propositions through drawings, sculptures, photo-pieces, and a video that explores themes of time, sustenance, and sleep, while also evoking the celestial.

    The exhibition’s title is taken from a sculpture of the same name that is an assembly of ten animals as if in a cosmic dormitory, wherein their body sizes have been equalized in their state of sleep.

    Watch the video to listen to the artist talk about his work.

    The exhibition runs at Galerie Daniel Templon through October 24.

    Jitish Kallat on his “The Infinite Episode” Exhibition at Galerie Daniel Templon

    0 0

    The Top 5 Milan Expo Pavilions

    The international exposition has a long, grand history, dating back to the 1851 London show in which architect Joseph Paxton debuted the Glass Palace — a building that has been associated with the forward march of modernity ever since. World’s Fairs that followed in Chicago, New York, and Philadelphia also displayed the latest innovations, be it in building design, product invention, or other creative industries. The event now takes place every five years in far-flung destinations, organized around overly optimistic themes. The 2015 edition, in Milan, takes as its motif “Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life." Sadly the program does not live up to its storied past. Many architecture-world personalities have made their displeasure known, with complaints about unimaginative presentations and corporate encroachment (McDonalds and Eataly for example, both have pavilions, which have historically been the preserve of participating nations).

    Yet perhaps it’s simply time to stop using the metric of progress and invention when judging the Expo’s value. The fair may no longer display ambitions for the future, but it does say a great deal about contemporary societies and their concepts of architecture. The international exposition is still, after all, a massive convocation of countries, with more than 130 participating this year, and it thus provides a forum for comparing their abilities to produce convincing cultural propaganda in accordance with a set theme.

    In Milan, dictators really blew it out of the water — many of them, curiously, contributing to the postmodernism revival that’s been a popular, contentious topic this summer. Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Bahrain, all deserve gold stars, even if their pavilions didn’t make our list.

    Not-so-honorable mentions: the United States and Britain. What boring, banal structures they contributed. Russia and Estonia presented far more interesting cantilevers than the U.S., and Britain had some half-ephemeral claptrap by Thomas Heatherwick. Come on, Western democracies — do something right for a change!

    Turkmenistan
    Without a doubt, the best pavilion at the 2015 Milan Expo belongs to Turkmenistan: a glided, marble-clad study in ornamentation that puts Western postmodernism to shame. In a Eurocentric world that often seeks to discount or deny the creative agency of petty autocrats, Turkmen president-for-life Gurbanguly Berdimukhamedov proves his detractors wrong — at least on aesthetic grounds (his human rights record is altogether less sparkling than his architecture).

    The three-story box features an LED-equipped façade that also displays traditional national symbols and geometric patterns.  Inside, two massive carpets hang ceiling to floor, flanking a massive LED disco ball that shows filmed reels of Turkmen rugs and muskmelons. The exhibitions on the first and second floors focus on national achievements — in particular, Berdimukhamedov’s, with one memorable display showing copies of his book, Medicinal Plants of Turkmenistan, alongside photographs of fantastical architecture of marble and tinted glass.

    South Korea
    If “You Are What You Eat” — as South Korea’s variation on the expo’s overarching theme, exclaims — the East Asian country’s bulbous white pavilion suggests at first glance that it has been consuming benevolent forest fungi over the past five years. Yet it turns out that Korea is actually a rarity among the Expo participants in not modeling its pavilion on a local foodstuff. Known as the Moon Jar, the building derives its shape from traditional pottery made in the shape of the full moon. The exhibitions inside include a section devoted to food storage, as well as displays about fermentation. 

    Qatar
    Qatar chose to interpret the Expo’s foodie theme in very literal terms — terms that were popularized by Robert Venturi and Denise Scott Brown: The country’s pavilion is a cross between the two postmodernists’ “duck” and “decorated shed.” The multistory main structure is realized in the historicist style associated with local markets, with a massive jafeer,  a traditional woven breadbasket, installed on the roof. Programming inside the pavilion revolves around the basket theme, in case that wasn’t already obvious.

    Holy See
    Although the other European microstates chose not to participate in this year’s Expo, the Vatican City erected a modest pavilion that, avoiding the ornamentation so popular elsewhere, might be mistaken for a church from a distance. The Holy See’s presence makes a great deal of sense, given the importance of food and drink in Catholic texts and liturgy.

    United Arab Emirates
    The UAE pavilion was one of the few created by a name-brand architect, Norman Foster, who also designed the MIT-affiliated Masdar Institute located in the desert of Abu Dhabi. The structure in Milan, whose undulating terra-cotta façade will be dismantled and transported to Masdar City when the expo is over, contains exhibits about Ramadan and popular traditional foods like dates and fish.

    Expo Milan 2015

    0 0
  • 09/18/15--21:40: Welcome to the Jungle at KW

  • 0 0


    0 0

    The Broad Opens With Glitz, Glamour, and a Gala

    There’s a lot of talk these days about how Los Angeles is changing — how it’s starting to look and act like New York. Eli Broad, at Wednesday’s press preview of his eponymous Museum in downtown L.A., seemed to go even even further. “This is the cultural capital of the world,” Broad proclaimed, usurping for Los Angeles a title that New Yorkers are accustomed to claiming for their own town.

    Natives of the Big Apple may be inclined to dispute the equivalence, let alone the preeminence of Los Angeles, in this sphere. Yet the scene at Thursday evening’s inaugural reception for the Broad Museum looked an awful lot like an East Coast gala of comparable pomp and circumstance. For starters, nearly everyone wore black, or some other somber tone. Over cocktails, guests in formal attire of the first order discussed the Broad’s new Diller Scofidio + Renfro building, located along a prime stretch of Grand Avenue across from Frank Gehry’s Walt Disney Concert Hall, their chatter overlaying the rustle of tulle and crinoline of ball gown  trying, to no avail, to rival the architecture. Not everyone hewed to the dress code, of course. John Baldessari, who evidently has the creative license to interpret the black tie however he sees fit, sported khaki fatigues. And inside the museum, where attendees mingled ahead of the evening’s celebratory dinner, New York City art dealer Dominique Levy navigated the sea of navy blue and gray in the night’s most impressive costume: a neon-green frock that shone almost as brightly as the Ellsworth Kelly paintings hanging nearby — some of which may well have been acquired through her channels.

    Whatever their similarities, New York will have to admit L.A. superiority in one crucial category: celebrities. They flocked to the rapidly developing Bunker Hill neighborhood, where Eli and Edythe Broad’s new institution is seen as a crucible for urban regeneration. Owen Wilson was there, as were a lot of other vaguely familiar faces that I can’t put a name to. In a curiously poignant moment, Gwenyth Paltrow greeted Toby Maguire and Jennifer Meyer in front of Thomas Struth’s museum photographs. Their enthusiasm provided a stark contrast to Struth’s stupefied art viewers and offered a reminder that spectacle comes in many varieties. There’s plenty in the art business, of course — and New York galleries opening a slew of high-profile outposts on the West Coast are fast making inroads in the cultural life of Los Angeles — but in Hollywood, there’s no business like show business.

    The Broad Museum Los Angeles

    0 0

    California Dreaming: Maccarone Opens Los Angeles Space

    Michele Maccarone is going west.

    The veteran New York gallerist will keep her two West Village spaces while expanding into downtown L.A. with a 50,000-square-foot complex replete with a 15,000-square-foot outdoor sculpture garden.

    “I’m really interested in doing large, longer-lead solo exhibitions with gallery artists in the new space,” says Maccarone. “It allows me to be more experimental in New York, and to do group shows or historical shows or projects with artists we don’t necessarily represent.”

    Also in the works are plans for a 2,000-square-foot project space, to open within the L.A. compound in the fall of 2016.

    “If people are going to go out of their way to the gallery, they want an experience, and that’s what the sculpture garden and exhibition space are, and that’s eventually what the project space will be,” says Maccarone.

    At its September 19 debut, the new gallery will host a solo show of work by Alex Hubbard, as well as new pieces by Oscar Tuazon and Carol Bove in the sculpture garden.

    A version of this article appears in the September 2015 issue of Art+Auction.

    Michele Maccarone

    0 0

    Beyond Misery: Considering the 56th Venice Biennale

    Future is an interesting word, isn’t it? The Latin futurus means “yet to be,” which is a neutral way 
of saying that what lies ahead is still unformed, neither negative nor positive, and it roots down into the oldest of linguistic origins, the Proto-Indo-European bheue, the earliest shaping
of the verb to be, invoking being itself. In other words, what’s still unformed 
is matter—molecular, mysterious, before the strings of DNA and RNA have woven together intelligence, betrayal, negotiation, polis and politics, conflict and art. So to invoke the word future
 is to imagine the hidden possibilities
of fundamental destruction and repair. And futures, as Okwui Enwezor, artistic director of the 56th Venice Biennale, shapes the title of his big exhibition, “All the World’s Futures,” seems at once prescriptive, prognosticative, and deliciously open to the idea of many ways forward, a plurality of predictive hopes.

    In fact, Enwezor is far narrower. His approach to the vastness of human activity fixes on capitalism—capitalism as scourge, corrupter, emptier of souls, engine of violence, with not much hope hanging
 on the horizon, just a lot of weapons and expropriated cash. Ambitiously, though
 to little actual serious effect, he goes so far as to stage a reading of all three volumes of Marx’s Das Kapital over several months, ensuring that no one will actually listen to much of it at all. This is Kapital as symbolic capital only, which immediately sends a disastrously mixed message: scholarship turned into spectacle, a thousand pages of economic analysis and theory as a form of theatrical entertainment. This isn’t—it can’t be—Enwezor’s intention, as he’s shown himself over the past 20 years to be a brilliant, deeply serious and committed, sociopolitically activist curator. He’s
been an organizer of beautifully precise exhibitions (“The Short Century,” “Archive Fever,” Documenta 11), with clear and eloquent nuances of complex ideas bracingly narrated. And yet, for him not to realize that the very mechanism of capitalist seduction is simply being used without a thunderous question mark, to do this without conscious awareness of the intellectual contradiction and therefore compromise, should be our first signal of alarm.

    But it isn’t the first at all. Before visitors ever get to the center of the central pavilion, the “Arena” (designed by the British architect David Adjaye and programmed by the wonderful British artist Isaac Julien) where Kapital plays, the internal contradiction of Enwezor’s critique of capitalism has already begun. The crowds of art world denizens come up the gravel path among the national pavilions to Enwezor’s towering palace, and what do they see? Twenty dour shrouds of cloth, black and monumental, hanging among the imperial(ist) columns fronting the building. The work is by Colombian artist Oscar Murillo, now resident in London, central hive of the global art market. Murillo’s hugely inflated prices, which have escalated stratospherically in the past three seasons—turning the artist, complicit or otherwise, into a lavish subaltern of the
 1 percent—could not be a better counterexample to Enwezor’s theme of endemic capitalist speculation and its consequences for labor and society. (Not, by the way,
that capitalism is only an evil empire or the only evil empire.) How the curator could possibly imagine that Murillo, poster child of speculative market inflation, would be a clarion call to resistance and referendum on economic inequity is utterly bewildering, no matter what he and Murillo claim for the content of the work. The capitalist semiotics speak more loudly, I’m afraid. And as an acutely intelligent parser of such semiotics, Enwezor should have thought better.

    After all, anyone can see what Enwezor intends. On the portico above the columns, he’s placed Glenn Ligon’s fluorescent
work titled A Small Band, 2015, spelling out the words blues blood bruise.

    Stepping through Murillo’s capitalist rags, visitors find the first installation inside, Fabio Mauri’s sentimental dirge for the Holocaust, with its forlorn stack of (presumably rifled and confiscated) old leather suitcases, The Western Wall or the Wailing Wall, 1993. The proximity of capital and calamity are striking their clangorous, if all too obvious, chord. And we’re off to the atrocity fair: genocide, slavery, exploitation in a kaleidoscope of incidents—brutalities abound.

    There is far too much art on view here and in the Arsenale (the other vast
venue for Enwezor’s elegiac and ultimately nostalgic take on what futures means) for me to review gallery after gallery
of works. One hundred thirty-six artists, 53 countries, 159 newly commissioned pieces—a staggering amount of art (typical of this and other oversize international “statement” platforms, think Documenta, São Paulo, Istanbul, Gwangju, Berlin) that raises a very different question than the economic one on the curator’s mind, but not unrelated: Why do we need so much art in any exhibition, as if the depth of ideas and the visual power of a handful of things wouldn’t be enough? In the digital age, when artists’ work from a lot more than 53 countries is visible at every moment of every day, a biennial is no longer about news. And so what a curator is left to do, funded ultimately by the capitalism of the art world as it spreads its metastable network into every corner of cultural tourism, is to make something impossibly sprawling to proliferate the ambling arguments of a distended theme. But Enwezor’s strategy is no less punishing, as what he’s given us instead is just one idea (the disasters of capitalism) over and over again until we’re bludgeoned into sullen outrage, resignation, or simply misery.

    Among the cascades
 of grim, didactic art, rife with exclamatory cries
 of protest and pain, there are many, many works
 by major artists or major works by lesser-known artists that are worth attention (personal short list: Wangechi Mutu, Jeremy Deller, Marlene Dumas, Adel Abdessemed, Katharina Grosse, Ligon, Walker Evans [of course], Hans Haacke, John Akomfrah, Kerry James Marshall, Victor Man, Emily Kame Kngwarreye, Gary Simmons, Mika Rottenberg, Kutlug Ataman, Sonia Gomes, Chris Marker). Throughout, Enwezor follows in the footsteps of the past few curators of the Biennale by disregarding the selection
 of only the most contemporary work to include older art that supports his theme. For example: Christian Boltanski’s grainy three-minute color film from 1969, L’homme qui tousse, showing a man retching over and over again, whose abjectness would seem to be as much of a tutelary figure for the whole of this Biennale as the angel in Paul Klee’s famous image from 1920, Angelus Novus, which Enwezor grandly cites under the mournful aegis of Walter Benjamin as the emblem of historical catastrophe and catastrophes to come. Or let’s just call it catastropheism, which is Enwezor’s specialty here.

    These figures are specters—a word much on the curator’s mind, rhyming in its foreboding sweep across the plane of history, past and future, with the debacles of capitalism. He writes in his text for
the catalogue: “Already, at the meeting of the organizers of the national pavilions in Venice in early March 2015, shadows and specters were weaving their saturnine games.” But then this sounded familiar, and turning to Enwezor’s essay in his Documenta 11 catalogue from 2002, his introductory sentence reads: “Almost 
fifty years after its founding, Documenta finds itself confronted once again with the specters of yet another turbulent time of unceasing cultural, social, and political frictions....” This should come as no surprise, given the curator’s acclamation of Marx, first in that the word appears in the famous opening line of The Communist Manifesto, “A specter is haunting Europe— the specter of Communism,” and second, because Enwezor is haunted by his single purpose. What he did elsewhere, including that brilliant Documenta, shaping a broad diagnostic forensics of social troubles,
 he has now reduced almost entirely to the one note of the ills of capital (and of which, by the way, no particularly coherent post-Marxist reading is given. On that score, I suggest the 2010 anthology, bristling with propositions, The Idea of Communism, edited by Costas Douzinas and Slavoj Žižek, and its 2013 follow-up).

    Of course, it’s true that “regarding
the pain of others,” in Susan Sontag’s phrase, means to draw us in and agitate against the pain of all of us together. But Enwezor is preaching to the converted
and the compromised. For the audience of the Biennale is composed largely of left- leaning sympathizers and the very, very rich—those who need no lessons about exploitative capitalism and those who perform it. And so in this exhibition of what is already an endeavor compromised by the very market that is emblematic
of the forces implicated in its theme, the curator has failed to look beneath the rhetoric of the spectacle of capitalism and focus more forcefully and clearly (and, more radically, with less art to deaden
our sense of it) on what’s really at the
base of this: the violence society commits against itself; what humans do and always have done to one another, only now with more technological efficiency and global awareness. And this is to say that to discuss violence within the fundamentally aggressive nature of human animals is as if we were talking about air and light and water—fixtures of the very weather of human nature. After all, I heard Enwezor out in front of the central pavilion say
that his show was “a series of essays on the state of things bearing witness to
our time.” So to address violence as such has to be far more specific in its grasp
of its subject, and that is to say that
 if we’re going to talk about the violence of capitalism as a mechanism and to protest against it, then the curator in his prognosticative mode should get down to business and offer a trajectory, an offering of ways to address the mechanisms of capitalism’s violence; to point, for example, to the theories of capitalism’s acceleration toward its own implosive collapse, which Marx himself spoke of in the vast collection of thoughts preliminary to Das Kapital that’s titled Grundrisse—akin to the English words outline, layout, blueprint.

    To do this is entirely in keeping with other forms of violence that engulf us today, as we’re seeing now in the rise of ISIS, for example, and the ruin of Syria, which are nothing less than the implosive force of a cancerous society within and against itself. But if I’m calling for a more pointed response from Enwezor, I’m also curious about his curatorial project in general as an essay on the current and future condition of humanity. To address social cataclysm with such singular focus, and particularly for a vision of futures, ultimately seems to look backward through the rearview mirror of disaster rather than forward, a peculiar form of dystopian nostalgia. Which is to say that he never actually suggests anything at all about the unformed formation of the world ahead nor does he overtly address the nature of human nature in its very inclination to find and express various forms of escape from itself. That’s the basis of the ancient human impulse expressed in the Greek notion of the pharmakon, of the unleashing of the imagination through ritual and alternative means of perception toward a vision of alternative vocabularies of life unchained from our violence. And so Enwezor’s subject, which is finally about predatory economics as contiguous with economies of violence, should have had the breadth of vision with such a title as “All the World’s Futures” to delve into the broadest sense of the pharmakon, of the idea of the ways that art moves us beyond sheer mountains of misery, of the way artists actually do offer renovating visions for our future(s), and he should not have left himself (and us) stranded in the mechanical microcosm of capitalist repetition alone.

    I keep thinking about one particular work in the show, speaking of repetition. It’s Adrian Piper’s Everything #21, 2010–13: four blackboards with a single phrase written out in longhand 100 times, like
 a bad student being punished, a student whose name could be Cassandra. (Piper, incidentally, won the Golden Lion prize for the Biennale’s best artist.) She writes: “Everything will be taken away.” That is Enwezor’s mantra. Everything taken away through economic hardship? Through political repression? Through old age? No doubt, yes to all. That’s to say, everything except the pain, which stings at first and then, through sheer, unrelieved accumulation, leaves us at sea in this show of troubled variations that become too much the same. With the grand stage of the Biennale as his bully pulpit, Enwezor is part of an elevated caste of curators,
 a word that comes from the Latin curatus, to cure or heal. But to use his eloquence 
to proffer nothing but dark witness instead of offering through art pathways forward into possible futures is not only not a
cure, it’s a miscalculation in the name of activism that can’t possibly live up to that task of curatus whose mantle he evidently claims. To simply be Cassandra at the wall of catastrophe is not enough. I think of what Goethe was said to have cried out on his deathbed: “More light!” Dear Okwui Enwezor, show us the way.

    A version of this article appears in the September 2015 issue of Modern Painters.

    Venice Biennale

older | 1 | .... | 318 | 319 | (Page 320) | 321 | 322 | .... | 332 | newer