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Alice Hope: interview
Alice Hope: Tab. Ricco/Maresca Gallery, New York City, until 24 May 2014
Alice Hope likes working with small things, lots of them. They can be – and often are – tiny metal parts: shiny, hard, polished. They pile up, threaded through, arranged in regular patterns, or made into objects that look like curtains, lamps and even computer memory boards.
From Gucci to Gaultier: London hosts two major fashion exhibitions
This month sees the opening in London of two major fashion exhibitions: The Glamour of Italian Fashion 1945-2014 at the V&A, and The Fashion World of Jean Paul Gaultier: From the Sidewalk to the Catwalk at the Barbican.
Pangaea: New Art From Africa and Latin America
Saatchi Gallery, London, until 31 August 2014
Pangaea opens with Rafael Gómezbarros’s Casa Tomada, an impressive installation that in many ways provides the key to the rest of the exhibition.
Zhang Enli: interview
To be immersed into Zhang’s vibrant hues and tonal motions is to revisit a childhood sensibility when play and dreams transport us into altered states.
Obituary: Michael Patrick Spens
The architect, writer, and former publisher/editor of Studio International, Michael Patrick Spens of Wormiston, Knight 1st Class, Order of the Lion of Finland (for services to architecture), has died aged 74.
Matthew Barney: River of Fundament
Haus der Kunst, Munich, until 17 August 2014
Matthew Barney, best known for his CremasterCycle (1994-2002), comprising five films, with accompanying photographs, drawings, sculptures and installations, filled with anatomical allusions to the position of the reproductive organs during the embryonic process of sexual differentiation, is back.
Alex Katz: 70s/80s/90s
Timothy Taylor Gallery, London, until 17 April 2014
Alex Katz’s paintings are recognisable from their bold, flat and often colourful depictions of figures and landscapes. Katz, who was born in Brooklyn, New York, in 1927, found an artistic formula that was emblematic of his lifestyle as well as his subject matter, to which he stayed loyal.
Modern Nature: Georgia O’Keeffe and Lake George
De Young Museum of Fine Arts, San Francisco, until 11 May 2014
Georgia O’Keeffe (1887-1986) is one of America’s thumbtack artists, those whose posters are pinned to college dorm walls and whose work you will recognise even if standing on your head.
Alfredo Jaar: interview
Alfredo Jaar was born in Santiago, Chile, in 1956. He attended the Chilean-North American Institute of Culture, Santiago, and the University of Chile, emigrating to the United States in 1982 at the midpoint of the Pinochet dictatorship.
Tim Rollins and KOS’s Angel Abreu and Rick Savinon: interview
At the SCAD Museum, Lilly Wei talked with Tim Rollins and Angel Abreu and Rick Savinon, two of the original members of Kids of Survival about KOS, its past, present and future, and about the exhibition.
Marrakech Biennale: fifth edition – Where are we now?
Marrakech, Morocco, until 31 March 2014
Combining programmes of visual and performing arts, cinema and video, and literature, the biennale addresses the arts from a multi-perspective, broadening the thinking capacity of the participants.
Whitney Biennial
Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, until 25 May 2014
Most early reviews of the Whitney Biennial have been vehemently critical, often only citing the section curated by Michelle Grabner as worthy of measured praise.
Eleanor, directed by Alex Warren and Toby Ross-Southall: interview
An extraordinary collaborative enterprise (displayed at the Cob Gallery Camden as a three-screen installation), Eleanor is conceived and co-directed by actor/director Alex Warren and film-maker/director Tobias Ross-Southall.
Welcome to Iraq
South London Gallery, Camberwell, until 1 June 2014
The South London Gallery presents a restaging of the group exhibition Welcome to Iraq, originally shown as part of the National Pavilion of Iraq at the 55th Venice Biennale in 2013.
Patrick Scott: Image Space Light
Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin, until 18 May 2014
Unsurprisingly coming from an architecture graduate, Scott’s work often revolved around order. Even though his career spanned 75 years and a wealth of mediums, there is a remarkable unity to his work, as if it arrived fully formed.
Gustave Doré – Master of Imagination
Musée d’Orsay, Paris, until 11 May 2014
Gustave Doré was immensely successful in his day. He was the highest paid illustrator in France as a teenager, was exhibited at the Salon, courted by Napoleon III and, above all, became internationally renowned through his prolific illustrations of literary classics.
Liliane Lijn: interview
“I’d like to be remembered for giving some joy to people. I personally feel that that is the most important function of art: awareness and joy. I don’t see art as a way of criticising politics; I don’t really feel that that’s a function of art.”
Ana Mendieta in Rome: interview with Raquel Cecilia
Studio International talks to film-maker Raquel Cecilia about documenting Ana Mendieta’s last creative years in Italy.
Xu Bing: interview
Xu Bing, the internationally acclaimed Chinese conceptual artist who works in a variety of disciplines and materials, in particular printmaking, ink painting, calligraphy, text and installation, and has also worked with silk worms and pigs, has just completed a major project in New York, the installation of his magnificent Phoenix.
Robert Mapplethorpe
Grand Palais, Paris, until 13 July 2014
With more than 250 works on display, the retrospective at the Grand Palais is the most comprehensive and extensive ever staged of the photographer’s work.
Wilhelmina Barns-Graham: In Perspective – The Late Works
Art First, London, until 17 May, 2014
Wilhelmina Barns-Graham was a key figure in the abstract movement in Britain yet it was only towards the end of her long and productive life that she received the critical attention she deserved.
Michael Rush: interview
Lilly Wei talks to the director of Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum at Michigan State University.
Cézanne and the Modern
Masterpieces of European Art from the Pearlman Collection
Ashmolean Museum of Art and Archeology, University of Oxford, until 22 June 2014
The exhibition positions Cézanne at the beginning of the Modern – the first room displaying a selection of his drawings, sketches and watercolours.
Nika Autor: Newsreel – The News Is Ours
Jeu de Paume, Paris, until 18 May 2014
Autor’s use of multimedia art is both connective and immersive. She delves down through the historical strata and finds features that still resound, either by difference or similarity.
Ida Kerkovius: “My world is colour”
Kunstsammlung Chemnitz, Chemnitz, Germany, until 27 April 2014
In her lifetime, Kerkovius was a big success, honoured with various awards and titles, including the Federal Cross of Merit, a professorship and honorary membership of various academies and guilds.
Robert Adams: The Place We Live
Jeu de Paume, Paris, until 18 May 2014
Robert Adams’s enigmatic, graceful exhibition at Jeu de Paume suggests there are untold subtleties and nuances involved when examining this changing world.
Sarah Raphael
Sarah Raphael by William Packer. Published by Unicorn Press, 2013
Sarah Raphael (1960-2001) was described as one of Britain’s finest figurative painters when she died tragically at the age of 40.
Veronese: Magnificence in Renaissance Venice
This latest exhibition at the National Gallery, beautifully displayed and sympathetically realised, presents a true Renaissance genius, who has, until now, been strangely sidelined by the British art establishment.
Anna Raimondo: interview
We meet Raimondo in Marrakech to talk about her project Here. Now. Where?, created with artistic partner Younes Baba-Ali for the fifth Marrakech Biennale.
Esme Toler and Olì Bonzanigo: interview
Esme Toler and Olì Bonzanigo are the creators of 13th Hour (2014), a sculpture on the roof of L’Blassa, a 19th-century French colonial apartment block in Gueliz, the new city of Marrakech.
Architecture Film and Postmodern Culture
Der zweite Blick/A Second Look. Published by Edition Axel Menges, Stuttgart-Fellbach, 2013
Based on five fully worked case studies, author Konrad Kirsch investigates the fundamental layering of five films by four directors; Alfred Hitchcock, Blake Edwards, Ridley Scott and Stefan Ruzowitzky.
Renaissance Impressions
Chiaroscuro Woodcuts from the Collections of Georg Baselitz and the Albertina, Vienna
Royal Academy of Arts, London, until 8 June 2014
Renaissance Impressions is a comprehensive survey of some remarkable pieces of printmaking from the 16th century.
Michael Craig-Martin
Chatsworth House, Derbyshire, until 29 June 2014; Objects of our Time and Master Prints, Alan Cristea Gallery, London, until 2 May 2014
Michael Craig-Martin has three exhibitions opening this month, one at Chatsworth House in Derbyshire and two in London.
Shiver Me Timbers! Nick Jeffrey
Hannah Barry Gallery, London, until 13 April 2014
Shiver Me Timbers!, a new exhibition of work by Berlin-based British artist Nick Jeffrey, is the Hannah Barry Gallery’s second show in its new two-storey space in a warehouse in Peckham, south London.
Viennese Season: Actionism
Richard Saltoun, Austin/Desmond Fine Art, London until 4 April 2014
Suggestive, affective, nauseating. In 1960s Vienna, four men began producing art like never before.
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Miguel Benavides: Michael Spens spent 40 years with Studio, as publisher and editor. He will be forever missed. Our sincere condolences to his family.

Saatchi Art announces winner of world's most highly-submitted art prize

Jonathan Gabb speaking to Studio International at A Brooks Art, Hoxton, London, October 2013. © Studio International

Jonathan Gabb has been announced as the winner of the Saatchi Art “In Glorious Colour” Showdown competition. With 6,440 entries in a period of just 12 days, the competition, presented in partnership with the Saatchi Gallery and Winsor & Newton, received the highest number of submissions of any previous art prize. In an interview with Studio International, Gabb described how his sculptural paintings “reveal layers of colour and worlds of colour” and how he “want[s] people to delve into them or to want to delve into them.”

The works of the 10 finalists are on show at the Griffin Gallery, London, until 18 April and can be seen online at www.saatchiart.com 

Alice Aycock Paper Chase

Alice Aycock. Waltzing Matilda, 2013. Reinforced fibreglass, Approximately 15’ high x 14’6” wide x 17’6” long. Edition of 2. To be installed at 56th street in Spring 2014. Courtesy Alice Aycock / PAPC & Galerie Thomas Schulte, Berlin. Rendering.

Architecturally inspired sculptor Alice Aycock says she hoped to capture the "energy of thought and ideas colliding and being transmitted outward" in her series Paper Chase Park Avenue, consisting of seven painted aluminium and fibreglass sculptures recalling wind currents, whirlpools and spinning tops and referencing paper models made by architects and the Russian Constructivists. The exhibit follows on the heels of a major retrospective of her drawings shown in New York in 2013 and travelling to the University of California, Santa Barbara, this year.

Park Avenue Mall, 52nd – 66th Streets, New York, until July 2014

Phoenix: Xu Bing at the The Cathedral

Xu Bing. Phoenix, 2008-10. Composed of two birds, Feng and Huang, each weighing 12 tonnes and measuring 90 and 100 feet long. Photograph: Miguel Benavides.

Following its premiere outside his native China at Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art last year, multimedia artist Xu Bing’s vast sculpture Phoenix (2008-2010), consisting of male and female bird figures built with cast-offs gleaned from urban construction sites in China, is coming to New York, where the birds will take flight from the nave of a towering Gothic Revival church on the city’s Upper West Side. Weighing 12 tonnes each, the two birds represent the dignity of migrant workers, the artefacts of their daily lives, and the growing divide between the material and the spiritual in his country.

Cathedral of St John the Divine, New York, 1 March 2014 – January 2015

John Zinsser: Paintings and File Studies

John Zinsser. Little Secrets, 2014. Enamel and oil on canvas, 18 x 18 in. Courtesy James Graham & Sons.

John Zinsser’s engagement with the formal and aesthetic dimensions of American abstraction has become, over the years, a commitment to its enduring relevance and potential to expand the boundaries of painting practice. Zinsser has written about and championed other artists exploring similar territory while making and exhibiting his own characteristically elegant, expertly crafted works. For Paintings and File Studies, he has selected a group of large oils on canvas and the drawings and collages that served as source material. - Cindi Di Marzo.

James Graham & Sons, New York, 14 February – 29 March 2014

Who’s that Girl?

Marvin Gaye Chetwynd, 2014. Image still from The Green Room, commissioned by Nottingham Contemporary.

“Artists should live experimentally,” says 2012 Turner Prize nominee Marvin Gaye Chetwynd, formerly known as “Spartacus”, after the Roman soldier who led a slave rebellion against the Roman republic. Chetwynd’s multimedia explorations involve wild rides through art history (Giotto) and literature (Dante’s Inferno), as well as playful deconstructions of identity by changing her own name. This self-titled first solo exhibition of her work at a public gallery in Britain, led by a guide dressed as the Addams Family’s cousin Itt, includes a selection of paintings from her Bat Opera series.

Nottingham Contemporary, Nottingham, UK, 25 January – 23 March 2014

For Art’s Own Sake

Louis Anquetin. Femme à la voilette, 1891 (detail). Oil on canvas, 81 x 55 cm. © Private collection, courtesy of D. Nisinson.

Bohemia may be a state of mind, but it found its most attractive enactment in fin de siècle Paris, inspired by Henry Murger’s 1851 classic Scènes de la Vie de Bohème. Ironically, the poor-but-carefree lifestyle depicted in Murger’s novel attracted young artists, writers and thinkers from wealthy families, who rejected convention, prioritising art over money and comfort. Esprit Montmartre: Bohemian Life in Paris Around 1900 celebrates the community that emerged on Montmartre hill, with some 150 paintings by Picasso, Bonnard, Degas, Van Gogh, Toulouse-Lautrec and others who lived there at its most exciting period of ferment.

Schirn Kunsthalle, Frankfurt am Main, Germany, 7 February – 1 June 2014

A Native American Romantic in Modernist Clothing

George Morrison. Grey and Black Composition, 1960. Gouache on paper, 14 x 10 1/2 in. Collection Minnesota Museum of American Art. Gift of George Morrison.

Anishinaabe expressionist artist George Morrison (1919-2000) was born on the Grand Portage Indian Reservation in Minnesota, but his quest as an artist took him far, both literally – he  studied in France, Italy and Spain and at the Art Students League of New York, painted on Cape Code and taught at the Rhode Island School of Design – and figuratively – he became friends with Jackson Pollock and Willem de Kooning and other prominent action painters and abstract expressionists. While his aesthetic drew on their modernist vision, he embraced nature as his religion, inspired by the rocks, trees, woods and wide horizon surrounding his birthplace as well as his people’s legends. Modern Spirit: The Art of George Morrison, a touring retrospective of his exquisite paintings, elemental totemic sculpture, and drawings and prints, highlights the romantic, spiritual dimensions of his art.

National Museum of the American Indian, New York City, 24 October 2013 – 23 February 2014 and travelling to six museums during 2015. 

Moving Pictures

Wellington Pink Squad protest group, Riddiford Street, Wellington, 1981. Photograph: John Miller.

Māori photographer John Miller won the 2003 Media Peace Prize Lifetime Award for his promotion of peace through his work. He describes himself as a “sympathetic observer”, but the power of his images indicates a reflective yet acute study of civil rights issues, particularly apartheid, as well as anti-nuclear and Māori demonstrations. John Miller: Tour Scrums brings together his black-and-white photographs of anti-apartheid protests in 1970s Wellington and the 2007 Tour Scrums: Protesting Black and Blue project, twin-screen colour work documenting the 1981 Springbok rugby tour conflicts in New Zealand.

Deane Gallery, City Gallery of Wellington, New Zealand, 1 February – 13 April 2014

Celebrating Community

Jeff Wall. The Quarrel, 1988 (print, 1989). Cibachrome print, fluorescent light, aluminum and Plexiglas box, 2/3. 119 x 175.6 cm. MACM, purchase.

The Musée d’art contemporain (MACM) marks 50 years as one of Montreal’s major cultural institutions by joining forces with the city’s other great repository of art, the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts (MMFA) for this exhibition, offered to the public free of charge. When Collections Collide: The Musée d’art contemporain at The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts concentrates on contemporary works, arranged as an “aesthetic conversation” between collections. The show spotlights individual strengths – installations, multimedia and photography by Canadians for MACM, painting and sculpture from at home and abroad for MMFA – while reinforcing the need for partnership and community. 

The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, Canada, 22 February – 15 June 2014 

Down and Out but Well-Dressed

Munchen, Swim suit, Wool, circa 1930, Germany, The Museum at FIT, Museum Purchase.

While economic hardship and escalating political tensions in the 1930s made life difficult for people around the globe, the 1929 Wall Street crash and Hitler’s rise to power did not dampen the fashion industry. Edwardian stiffness and conventionality were cast aside in favour of a modern, streamlined aesthetic. Elegance in an Age of Crisis highlights breakthroughs in style, materials and manufacturing through an array of beautiful examples of haute couture, men’s tailoring, Hollywood costumes and sportswear created in the major fashion centres of the world for an international clientele.

The Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology, New York City, 7 February – 19 April 2014 

Infinitely Fractured World

Arno Gisinger. Image from the photographic series Atlas, suite, 2012.

Among the most interesting experiments into how images are replicated, rearranged and transmitted through time and space, thus fracturing and conflating visual experiences, Atlas: How to Carry the World on One’s Back, curated by French art historian and philosopher Georges Didi-Huberman and first shown at the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía in Madrid in 2010, riffs on work done by German cultural theorist Aby Warburg a century ago for his Mnemosyne Atlas. Afteratlas, a new iteration of the project presented by the Beirut Art Centre, is an Atlas-based photographic essay by Austrian photographer Arno Gisinger in collaboration with Didi-Huberman that keeps the images coming.

Beirut Art Centre, Beirut, Lebanon, 23 January – 22 March 2014 

Back to the Streets

Lee Quinones. Howard the Duck, 1988. Image courtesy of the Museum of the City of New York.

Born in Portland, Oregon, and raised in San Francisco’s Chinatown, painter Martin Wong made New York City’s Lower East Side his adopted home. From 1978 until his death in 1999, Wong also collected art and antiques, notably the world’s largest assembly of graffiti art. Donated by him to the Museum of the City of New York in 1994, his archive consists of hundreds of works on paper and canvas and photographs documenting this vibrant ephemeral art form made by outsiders learning their craft on the streets. City as Canvas exhibits many of these works, some by Keith Haring, Lady Pink and Lee Quiñones, for the first time.

Museum of the City of New York, 4 February – 24 August 2014 

A Good Frame is Worth a Thousand Pictures

Michael Snow, Canadian, b 1928. Authorization, 1969. Five instant silver prints (Polaroid 55), adhesive tape, mirror in metal frame, 21 1/2 x 17 1/2 inches (54.6 x 44.4 cm).

Canadian experimental film-maker and former jazz musician Michael Snow (Wavelength, Corpus Callosum) has just turned 84, but his multidisciplinary explorations into the nature of perception remain energised and engaging, his inquiries into the limits of representation precise and discerning. In addition to film and music, Snow has been a prolific painter, sculptor and writer. Michael Snow: Photo-Centric presents photographs taken between 1962 and 2003, in which the artist breaches the border between 2D and 3D and uses framing techniques to transform the medium into art.

Philadelphia Museum of Art, Philadelphia, PA, 1 February – 27 April 2014 


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