Tag Archives: art

On Culture: Inhotim reopens Gallery Doris Salcedo

The CultureJukebox team are huge fans of the epic gallery Inhotim; our visit there was one of the highlights of our month in Brazil in 2016.

So, it was great to hear that ine of the most important works of Inhotim’s collection is now reopened for the public. Neither (2004), by Colombian artist Doris Salcedo, was first exhibited at Inhotim in 2008, and has recently been fully restored, together with its host gallery.

This is the first major restoration project undertaken by Inhotim, reaffirming its commitment to the permanent exhibition of contemporary artworks.

Image c/o Inhotim
Image c/o Inhotim
Image c/o Inhotim

Neither’s restoration was concluded in three stages. Initially, an architectural intervention in the gallery modified the public access to the building and created a heated antechamber to avoid direct exposure of the work to external conditions. Then, the engine room of the pavilion was expanded to receive new monitoring equipment, which will guarantee more homogeneous and linear climatic parameters, even with the variation of temperature and humidity in the outdoor environment, as is common in Inhotim.

After the gallery adjustments, it was possible to start the third and more complex stage: the restoration of the work itself.

“In Neither, Doris Salcedo unprecedentedly combines non-conventional materials such as gypsum and metal plaques. We need to consider that contemporary art works like this are designed by artists during experimentation and often for short-term exhibitions. At Inhotim, our challenge is to carry out continuous research on the processes, materials and concepts used to guarantee the perenniality of the collection and the access of the public”, ~ María Eugenia Salcedo, adjunct artistic director of the Institute.

Born in Bogota, Colombia, Doris Salcedo’s work has since the 1980s dialogued with political and social issues. Several 20th-century violence stories, such as the guerrillas that have marked Colombian history for decades, emerge as references and starting points for her sculptures and installations.

Neither highlights the artist’s interest in architectural interventions, and more specifically with one of the paradigms of modern exhibitions: the white cube, a space segregated from the outside with idealized proportions and continuous illumination, providing a more “pure” and “neutral” experience with art. In this installation, however, a grid was attached to the walls, with minimal differences in its repetition. Charged with emotion but almost invisible, the work relates to the architecture of concentration camps, but also with the apparatuses of segregation in large cities. If the walls protect, the bars seclude and separate – the artwork, however, is neither.

Explore Inhotim online here: http://www.inhotim.org.br/en/

On Culture: Turning Technology On Itself – Incoming

The CultureJukebox team attended the new Richard Mosse show at The Barbican this week – a haunting piece of work that turns technology on itself.

It uses high-tech military-grade cameras to highlight the refugee crisis enveloping Europe and how we perceive the refugee as an entity.

The  technology has never been used in stories, art or aesthetically before and is regarded as a weapon under the international treaty of arms regulations. It works by picking up heat, as opposed to light, showing the starkness of the situation in monochrome.

It’s a remarkably intense and immersive exhibition, that uses the Barbican’s brilliant Curve gallery in a memorable way.  A new aesthetic, bold & brave – making people reconsider the refugee crisis. Very impressive work, a must see.

More information on the show is here. Let us know what you think below the line or on social media too.

 

On Visual Arts: The Infinite Mix

Last week we were invited to see The Infinite Mix in Central London, here’s what we made of it.

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The Infinite Mix brought a sense of space, spectacle and wonder to London. A much needed injection of  creative ambition, ideas and energy to a city in dire need of colour and fun in the post-truth “age of anxiety”.

A collection of works by blockbuster film and moving image artists, the show took place in the middle of a building site – dust and rubble was around many corners.

The Infinite Mix was a Hayward offsite exhibition, organised in collaboration with The Vinyl Factory. Here’s a few of our highlights:

Ugo Rondinone, THANX 4 NOTHING, 2015, film still. Courtesy: the artist, Galerie Eva Presenhuber and Barbara Gladstone Gallery, New York/ Brussels © Ugo Rondinone

THANX 4 NOTHING, 2015 © Ugo Rondinone

Ugo Rondinone’s immersive video installation features legendary beat poet John Giorno performing THANX 4 NOTHING. In this poem written on his 70th birthday, Giorno looks back at his life – and the people and events that shaped it – with humour and compassion. Performing in a tuxedo and bare feet on an empty stage in the Palais des Glaces theatre in Paris, as well as in a brightly-lit TV studio, Giorno gives thanks to ‘everyone for everything,’ before speaking frankly on the death of friends and lovers, sex, betrayal and his frequent periods of depression.

This installation was funny, warm and full of love. The artist’s admiration for another artist is clear, the stories and humour leaping from stage to screen and enveloping the viewer. A beautiful piece that is impossible to forget.

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Work No. 1701, 2013 © the artist.  c/o the artist, Hauser & Wirth

Martin Creed’s work often focuses on a single movement or gesture. In Work No. 1701a range of individuals cross a New York street, accompanied by a jubilant pop song written and performed by the artist. Talking about the film, Creed has commented that ‘doing things in life, living and working, is always using your body’, and that ‘life can look like a dance’. Work No. 1701 is a celebration of the act of getting from A to B, as well as the different ways in which people move through the world.

Creed, who has been writing songs and leading a band for over 20 years, describes his music and his visual work as an ‘attempt to make something for the world’. As he explains, they both stem from the same place: the desire to ‘say hello, to try to communicate somehow.’

Martin Creed’s piece was about movement and place – taking the viewer out of themselves and asking people to understand different location, dance and what makes people people.

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© DACS, 2016. Courtesy the artist and Esther Schipper, Berlin

In the holographic illusion OPERA (QM.15) Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster appears in the guise of legendary soprano Maria Callas (1923–77). Dressed in the singer’s signature red dress and dramatic makeup, the artist lip-syncs to arias from Cherubini’s Medea, Verdi’s La Traviata and Ponchielli’s La Gioconda. Situated at the end of a derelict corridor, and encountered from a distance of 30 metres, the luminous figure is at first startlingly life-like – an impression reinforced by the strength of Callas’s voice.

OPERA (QM.15) is influenced by the development of photography, early cinema and the interest in the uncanny shared by many 19th-century artists and writers. It is related to a larger body of work that Gonzalez-Foerster began in 2012: an ever-expanding ‘fragmented opera’ consisting of live and recorded performances in which she appears as a range of fictional or historical figures. To Gonzalez-Foerster, each performance – including her turn as Maria Callas – is not theatre, but rather ‘a kind of séance.’

The technical quality of the Gonzalez-Foerster installation was superb, capturing attention and imagination as people explored the building. The haunting sounds and beautiful holographic colours prove to mash together sound, space and time together. A unique experience that questions the nature of both art and performance. Wonderful.

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We’re limited by time what we can say about The Infinite Mix. First of all, it was a pleasure and a privilege to see large scale art and video in Central London. Let’s hope for more in 2017!

Secondly, we came away thinking about the title and the grouping of artists. What is really infinite? I think it’s modern culture, with its remixes, reinventions and technology opening up ever more outlandish ideas and ways to tell stories. And of course, these are mixed across countries and across cultures. But this “Infinite Mix” means we have a challenge, we only have finite time and an even smaller attention span – where does the great work go in The Infinite Mix?

P

 

On Art: Meng Zhou’s 0.064g – an exploration of silk and cocoon

The CultureJukebox team are looking forward to 0.064g – an exhibition of new work by Chinese artist Meng Zhou.

Curated by Yusi Xiong, this is the artist’s first solo exhibition in London. Featuring sculpture, painting, mixed-media work and video installation, the show presents alternative concepts for thinking about the individual’s relationship with both social and ecological environments, striking a balance between private and public, micro and macro – through the intriguing exploration of silk and cocoon.

(It’s an interesting time for Chinese cultural connections in the UK, as we’ve heard the British Council’s Creative Economy team are currently looking for UK maker spaces to host Shenzen talent. More information on that here.)

Here’s what the 0.064g  show preview has to say:

Zhou is of a generation that has formed its personalities and beliefs during a period of shifting social and economic circumstances, and through a boom in the availability of information and technology. Deeply engaged in the process of artistic creation, the contested notion of metamorphosis, and the becoming of oneself within a social environment, the artist consistently presents his distinct poetic and imaginative sensibility towards introspective concerns – which he has described as “being incubated and oppressed at the same time.”

0.064g collects these viewpoints and theories, on one hand presenting the artist’s personal narratives, mythologies and specific phenomenology, on the other representing the exploration of individual choices and potential within society through the notion of cocoon.

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The show is taking place at the Oxo Tower Wharf, Bargehouse Street, South Bank, London, SE1 9PH. It is open from October 26th to November 6th. More information is here.

 

On Culture: The Waldorf Project is back

The Waldorf Project: Chapter Three / FUTURO is returning to London in its biggest and most ambitious incarnation yet. Chapter Three / FUTURO will guide participants through the vast abyss, manipulating their emotions and responses in a genre-defying, multi-sensory experience – expressed in a universe of black and white alone.

One of the CultureJukebox team’s favourite London creative crews – this is a truly expansive immersive experience. Not to be missed.

The event is take place at Here East, London’s home for making, is – as a hub for entrepreneurs and pioneers of technology – the perfect stage for The Waldorf Project’s latest Chapter, presenting a world full of intrigue and wonder, unimaginable even to the most seasoned of Waldorf Project devotees.

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The Waldorf Project is staged under the concept of the Japanese emotion ‘AMAE’, meaning ‘a temporary surrender in perfect safety’. As in its previous chapters, The Waldorf Project unites the most pioneering practitioners in the worlds of environment design, product design, sound design, choreography, costume and textile design, and gastronomy, engendering through the birth of a new art form a rare synergy.

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Orchestrated and directed by artist Sean Rogg, the experience takes place between individual stages, or environments (each creating a new emotive synchronisation of taste, sound, touch and sight), participants will be immersed in the void of the cathedral-like sensation. Lost in the vacuum, they will be guided to move both as individuals and as a newly formed cumulative organism. Using exciting technologies and emotional manipulation, The Waldorf Project will explore new ways of implementing its algorithmic methods to manipulate the group, as developed in previous chapters; the ‘organism’, by interacting with its environment, will, ultimately, bring it to life and even learn to control it.

“We are not thinking beings that feel; we are feeling beings that think” ~ Antonio Domasio, Professor of Neuroscience, University of California

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“Those attending the experience will have their minds opened to the fanciful and phenomenal possibilities envisaged by preceding generations, before worldly pressures took over and stifled such thinking. By taking our guests on a journey, guided by their senses and interactions with hosts and fellow guests, we aim to satiate their inquisitiveness of these progressive worlds. Upon entering and experiencing Chapter Three / FUTURO, the environment we all live our daily lives in may seem a little humdrum to the initiated” ~
artist, Sean Rogg

The Waldorf Project: Chapter Three / FUTURO runs for nine nights, Thursday 10th – Sunday 13th November and Tuesday 15th – Sunday 20th November 2016.

For further information and for tickets visit www.waldorfproject.com

 

On Art: Something Amazing

British artist Stuart Semple has announced a major public art project, Something Amazing.
It has been commissioned by The Fertility Partnership and is taking place in six locations (London, Glasgow, Chelmsford, Southampton, Oxford & Nottingham) around the UK on Thursday September 1st.
Popping up in well-known sites – yet to be revealed – Stuart Semple’s large scale installations will brighten even the most mundane of mornings, encouraging people from all walks of life to stop, look and discover.
c/o Stuart Semple
c/o Stuart Semple

Raising awareness of the essential work of The Fertility Partnership, and to increase egg donations at their clinics, the campaign invites all women to consider how it might feel to be infertile, or unable to conceive, and the amazing gift they could potentially give.

Fertility treatment has transformed the lives of thousands of women. Every year, around 2,000 children are born in the UK as a result of donated eggs, sperm or embryos. The problem is, the UK just doesn’t have enough egg donors – and a woman can wait up to two years for an egg.

“I’m really excited to be creating these new pieces and to be bringing them to streets throughout England and Scotland. It’s amazing to be able to lend my art to a cause as important as egg donation. I see art as a really generous thing and the idea that art can link so directly to life is wonderful.” ~ Stuart Semple, artist

Exhibited globally, most recently in his solo show ‘My Sonic Youth’ at Fabien Castanier, Los Angeles, Stuart Semple is perceived as one of the UK’s most significant post YBA artists, with work owned by some of the most important and high profile collectors worldwide.
His artworks, worth from £300 for limited edition prints to £300,000 for large original painting, are highly collectable. So an exciting dimension to the project, and one reflective of the generous act of egg donation, is the 1,000 limited edition signed and numbered artworks, created by Semple especially for the project and to be given away on the day. Members of the public will be permitted to take an artwork with them – as a gift of generosity from the artist – but may also be inspired to continue in this altruistic vein, to share something amazing by giving the artwork to somebody else.
Stuart Semple is famous for his positive public art projects. In 2009, the artist came to public attention with ‘Happy Cloud’, in which he released thousands of smiley faced clouds created from soap and helium. Launching them from Tate Modern, the clouds were seen across the London skyline as they moved towards the City. Its universally enthusiastic reception compelled Semple to repeat the project in Milan during Salone De Mobile, followed by Moscow and Dublin. Other public artworks have included ‘JUMP’, a 100 metre squared inflatable interactive sculpture in Melbourne’s Federation Square in 2013 and, last year, ‘My Happy Place’, a city-wide event in association with Coventry Centre of Contemporary Art on the occasion of World Mental Health Day.
On this occasion, he invites us to explore what it means to change another woman’s life by sharing something amazingpublic art that can create life. The women who engage with the project on the day, and with the entire concept of egg donation, could ultimately positively affect the family of a stranger through one of the greatest gifts they could possibly give. Thousands of fertility treatments are only possible because a woman like you donates an egg. This is the fundamental message.
Certainly worth keeping your eyes peeled for this thoughtful and brave piece of work. For more information, visit here.