Craft

Andrew Nicholls: The Water Works at Turner Galleries

Australian artist Andrew Nicholls dredges the queasy aesthetics of sentiment for its submerged ideological content. In an ongoing thread of his practice, he locates the ideals and practices of British imperialism in the kitsch, seemingly innocuous world of 19th- and 20th-century ceramics, disrupting this historical narrative with traces of the otherness otherwise repressed in the imperial worldview. He subsumes his viewers in an unsteady undertow[…..]

The Fun of the Fair: Sydney Contemporary

Kim Joon, Bird Land - Chrysler, 2008, digital print, 47 x 83 inches, Sundaram Tagore Gallery, Hong Kong, New York, Singapore

Depending on who you ask, anywhere between eight thousand and thirteen thousand people attended the vernissage of the world’s newest art fair, Sydney Contemporary. By the end of three and a half days, the fair had attracted almost twenty-nine thousand visitors eager to see the offerings from eighty-three Australian and international galleries, presenting the work of more than three hundred artists. The physical scale was[…..]

Lick ’Em by Smiling: Jeremy Deller and Shary Boyle at the Venice Biennale

If the Venice Biennale is the United Nations of contemporary art, then the Giardini is its Security Council. The park’s stately pavilions belong to the (mostly European) nations that were best situated to claim them in the early- to mid-twentieth century. National pavilions are organized by state entities and can be counted on to present a government-sanctioned view of art, which tends toward the conceptually[…..]

Long Ago and Not True Anyway at Waterside Contemporary

Mekitar Grabedian, MG, 2006 (still); Video; 2:05. Courtesy of Waterside Contemporary, London.

In Long Ago and Not True Anyway at Waterside Contemporary, curator Pierre d’Alancaisez explores a kind of history that exists beyond the dry material of archives, records, and established national narratives. Instead, in this small London gallery nearly hidden around a corner among Islington’s high-density residential buildings, this exhibition’s artists and artworks blur the borders between uncertain subjective experience and the history it inhabits. Taking[…..]

Installation Art Reverses Production and Consumption Process

Ni Haifeng. Para-production, 2008-2012; textile shreds, sewing machines; work in progress, variable size

As part of our ongoing partnership with Beautiful/Decay, today we bring you the installation work of artist Ni Haifeng. For the better part of the last decade, Ni has been working with concepts of manufacturing and production, illustrating, in the words of curator and scholar Pauline J. Yao, “the symbolic systems that govern the movement of certain goods across international borders.” This article was written[…..]

The Transcendental Trash of Thomas Lanigan-Schmidt

Thomas Lanigan-Schmidt. The Fountain of Youth (Spritzer Thaw), 1969; Aluminum foil, plastic wrap, pipe cleaner, holographic tape, glitter, staples, mirror, colored marker; 13 x 10 x 9 in. Courtesy of the artist and Pavel Zoubok Gallery, New York.

Thomas Lanigan-Schmidt makes kitsch from the kitchen, using everyday materials such as cellophane, glitter, foil, and Easter-display grass to construct minutely detailed and coded ephemera that sanctify camp, trash, and a kind of queer sentimentality particular to the artist’s experience of the 1970s Hell’s Kitchen scene in New York. Ecce Homo, Pavel Zoubok Gallery’s current three-part exhibition, orbits around this artist’s counter-historical queer aesthetic. On the heels of his extensive[…..]

Chun Kwang Young: Assemblage

Chun Kwang Young. Aggregation 07 DE146, 2007 (detail); mixed media with Korean mulberry paper; 250 x 205 cm. Image courtesy of Michael Culme-Seymour and Art Plural gallery.

Chun Kwang Young’s Assemblage at Art Plural Gallery is a series of three-dimensional sculptural works wrapped with Korean mulberry paper and assembled within the two-dimensional frame of a canvas. Taking the ubiquitous use of the mulberry paper in Korea—also known as hanji—as a material point of reference, the Assemblage series explores a desolate landscape of depressions, protrusions and coloured spots, all of which seem to reference abstract painting’s visual language of prioritising[…..]