Contemporary Culture Carousel – 16 Jan 2012


EscapeIntoLife-Culture Carousel -KWhitenFeral Family, Kirsty Whiten

What’s On This Week

First a quick tour round Britain’s visual arts shows, as summed up in pictures by Exhibitionist (The Guardian). Lots of  lovely shows, especially Tobias Rehberger and Zarina Bhimji both in London. I’m going there soon and may catch one or both of these if I don’t spend all my time queuing to get in to the Leonardo da Vinci! And then there’s Kirsty Whiten in Edinburgh. Alas I’ll have to miss that one but we all can all console ourselves with our late founder’s Artist Watch post here. He posted her work about a month before he Escaped Into Life for good. We still miss you so much Chris!

EscapeIntoLife-CultureCarousel-NYCDance Questions About Angels – Mills/works Dance 

And here’s the NYT’s The Week Ahead  It’s more restricted geographically but ranges widely through many aspects of culture, from theatre and film, to dance, music and TV as well as art and art fairs. If I was in NYC I’d be heading for Questions About Angels, choreographed by Joseph Mills, a former principal dancer with MOMIX Dance Theater and also a visual artist.

And from summery down under here is Critics’ Choice from The Sydney Morning Herald I love that they have headings like Bar, Free and Family besides the more usual Music, Film and Stage, wish more arts round ups did this!! So go take a look, pretend you’re there right now enjoying summer and the Festival, and choose what most tickles your fancy  –  it’s OK, you can play a little…

Rolling Round Europe

Round Europe first with stops in Berlin, Brussels, London and Malmo, Sweden. Hold onto your hat because we’re taking off!

EscapeIntoLife_CultureCarousel_BerlinThe Orgone Motor, 1981, Paul Laffoley

Secret Universe II, Paul Laffoley, Hamburger Bahnhof (Art Forum) The second show in the museum’s Secret Universe series has until April 3rd to run,  so we’ve no excuse for not fitting in! Wes Hill writing for Art Forum says the show is “an engaging introduction to Laffoley’s fascinating career, and exemplifies the move in contemporary art to abolish outsider status.” There’s more information and a few more images of the striking work at the Hamburger Bahnhof website.

EscapeIntoLife_CultureCarousel_BrusselsThe Throw, 2011, oil on wood, framed,33 x 39 cm, Helmut Stallaerts

Helmut Stallaerts at Baronian-Francey, Brussels. “The world according to young Belgian artist Helmut Stallaerts is a dismal and absurd place, one rendered frigid and paranoid through the presence of some unnameable, invisible source of power, his protagonists caught in bizarre and inescapable scenarios” Art Review. The Stallaerts  show The Bubble Blower – what a great evocative/provactive name for the show! –  has just opened  and runs until 25 February. I can’t find any information in English but good old Art Splash has a nice selection of some of the surreal images from the show for your virtual viewing pleasure.

EscapeIntoLife_CultureCarousel_ArtGlassYellow Persian Installation, Dale Chihuly at Halcyon, Bond Street, London

Dale Chihuly – Halcyon Gallery,London (Art Lyst) Changing the mood, here’s something different and apparently quite spectacular, though maybe some would use other words  (like  gaudy maybe?) to characterise this contemporary art glass exhibition in London, . The show opened December 5th and is on through to the end of March. Dale Chiluly seems to approve the Halcyon’s new Bond Street premises and says “Returning to London to show this important collection of work is truly exciting. The inaugural exhibition at Halcyon Gallery, in such an incredible building, presents the ideal space to show this work – I’m pushing the boundaries of the medium as far as they can go in terms of scale and new techniques all the time.” If you can’t get to London, then see what you think of this selection of his work on Design Tavern.

EscapeIntoLife_CultureCarousel-MalmoThe Dying Dandy, 1918, Nils Dardel

It’s been on for a while but it ends February 5th so we’d best get going to the Moderna Museet in Malmo for Change of Scenes – which is a whole lot of great paintings from the first half of the twentieth century including works by, I quote: “Dardel, Matisse, Abdul-Hâdi, Léger among others”- Not to mention Alexander Calder, Brancusi, Paul Klee and Picasso. There’s a great 14 picture slide show at the Link to give you a taste, looks luscious! Below’s another one from the show so go check out the Link for the other 12.

EscapeIntoLife_CultureCarousel_MalmoTwo Odalisques, 1928, Henri Matisse

Onwards and Eastwards

Two great shows in the Middle East, more precisely in the Gulf area, more precisely in Dubai.

EscapeIntoLife_ContemporaryCarousel-DubaiHappy Feet, 2011, mixed media on paper, 2 panels, 29.5 x 42 cm each – Jeffar Khaldi

Jeffar Khaldi at Gallery Isabelle van den Eynde, Dubai (Art Splash)  Really wish I could see this show, with another good title – Throw Your Symbols On The Wall – featuring new work by the Palestinian-born artist. The Gallery website is very informative about his themes and his process and make sure you click on here on Works to see his canvas and paper pieces. Ends January 23rd! Making a note: must rush!

EscapeIntoLife_ ContemporaryCarousel -JourneyIntoSpaceSpomenik #4, photo by Jan Kempenaers Fournier Baikonur City # 02, International School of Space, Kazakhstan, 2011, photo by Vincent Fournier

A Journey into Space, Dubai (Art Splash) So since we’re here let’s look at what else is on? This photography exhibition is about space travel, yes this time the title is quite literal. Quoting loosely from the press release “…Virgin Galactic announced in 2011 that it plans to build its first commercial space port in Abu Dhabi. What better time than now to look back on the past and toward the future of space travel, that ultimate flight of fancy of the human imagination?” Even if you’re bemused rather than bewitched by the Space Race, you may well enjoy the work of the photographers in the show which is at The Empty Quarter until January 31st.  No fewer than 32 whole images at the Gallery Link, go wallow!

Spinning to the Southern Hemisphere

 EscapeIntoLife_RedGallery Food, He Zubin

Two Generations – 20 Years of Chinese Contemporary Art via Beijing’s Red Gate Gallery is touring Australia, starting off at Sydney Town Hall January 17-28 for the Chinese New Year. The Australian Business Arts Foundation describes it as featuring “the work of 11 of China’s senior contemporary artists from the iconic Red Gate Gallery in Beijing, who have each nominated an emerging artist they admire for inclusion. The works of the two generations of artists are being shown side by side to celebrate the achievement of one generation and the promise of the next.” Lots of images on the Red Gate Gallery site and information on the artists as well as dates when the show wil be in other venues and cities right here, plus a little slide show via the Sidney Morning Herald. Looks well worth a visit, I’d go if I were you mate!

EscapeIntoLife_CultureCarousel-Implemented Environments Untitled, Mohau Modisakeng

Implemented Environments, Brundyn + Gonsalves, Cape Town Yes Cape Town, in southern South Africa, I did say we were heading South, didn’t I? It’s a show focussing on environmental and ecological concerns; in the words of the Press Release the group show “marks an insightful and relevant investigation into South African artists’ meditations on notions of environment; whether addressing ecological, economic or sociopolitical conditions or simply reflecting on the earth-human connection.” Looks a terrific show, as you can see from the images above and below, as well as on the Gallery’s website. Ends soon, on January 25th.


Organism/Environment IV, Barbara Wildenboer

Pacific Post Script

Promise the Carousel will visit the Americas next week, for this week, just a shout for Pacific Standard time (Art Forum)  – there’s lots to choose among as you can see here (warning these last two Links will die when the Festival is over!). And a special mention for the Performance and Public Art Festival starting Thursday Jan 19th. Come catch the Carousel again soon!