Wednesday, February 21, 2007

DiVA Fair 22.-25.02. NY

For the third consecutive year, DiVA New York returns to the Embassy suites Hotel in Battery Park. For 4 days, the Atrium of the Embassy Suites Hotel will host Digital and Video Art presented by 16 international galleries. Each gallery will occupy one suite to display the work of artists they represent. Galleries are encouraged to dedicate one room of the suite to a single artist while using the second room to showcase more work from the same artist or works and projects by other artists. All works must be done with Video or New Media.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

ARCO´07 15.- 19.02 Madrid ,Spain

In 2007, ARCO begins a new phase, with a project combining continuity with the necessary innovation to face the demands of the contemporary art scene. A project inheriting an excellent reputation, and an enviable starting point from which to take on the new challenges opposed by the art market, and to responds to issues like the growth of collecting in Spain, the consolidation of ARCO as a marketplace, and the increasing competitiveness of international art fairs.

ARCO is opening a new phase, and this upcoming edition will see the first signs of the new guidelines for the future. That said, it will be 2008 when we see a real change, coinciding with a change of location to the brand new exhibition halls (12 and 14) at Feria Madrid, which will serve as a new starting point to redesign the layout and set new actions in motion.

Keys to the New ARCO Project.
In this new phase, ARCO will focus on three priority areas. First of all, its internationalization, with an action plan targeting Latin America and the emerging Asian market. In this context, the guest countries Korea (2007) and Brazil (2008) will undoubtedly help to open up access to Asia and to boost ARCO’s reputation as the gateway for Latin American art to the European market.

The second goal is to reinforce ARCO as a generating and dynamising element in the art market, devoting special attention to private Spanish and international collecting, as well as to institutional and corporate collections.

And thirdly, something much more visible in this edition, is the articulation of the artistic contents of the fair. And though it will embrace the whole spectrum of creative tendencies, these will now be organised in three sections. Firstly, the General Programme, with the fair’s official selection of galleries; secondly, Projects will host all the artistic alternatives selected by independent curators, and finally, The Black Box will maintain its format specialising in audiovisuals and new technologies.

The Fair.
Like other years, the General Programme is the core of the art fair, with a top quality selection of galleries, a comprehensive representation of art and artists, with a strong emphasis on the Historical Avant-gardes, and many big names from the international gallery world ranging from Modern Art to cutting-edge contemporary creation. Particularly worth underscoring is the wide representation from Austria, the guest country last year, together with a significant number of galleries from Germany, Portugal, Latin America and Asia.

Korea will play a central role this year as the focus country, with a project devised by Jung-Wha Kim, director of Museums Korea in Seoul, in collaboration with Jeong Ah Shin, chief curator of the Sungkok Art Museum and lecturer at the Dongguk University, who is in charge of the selection of galleries and artists’ projects in this section. The Korean presence will be rounded off by several exhibitions in museums and art centres in Madrid.

In turn, the sections set aside for emerging art will, as usual, be curated by leading independent curators, although we are introducing a significant new feature as far as the structure is concerned. More experimental creation will be showcased in one single programme called PROJECTS, which will no longer use thematic or conceptual leitmotifs for selecting galleries and artists, with a shift towards a more global presentation of contemporary creation. The team of curators comprises Carol Lu, David Liss, Moacir dos Anjos, Paola Santoscoy, Fernando Cochiarale, Tadeo Chiarelli, Ricardo Resende, Virginia Pérez-Ratton and Chus Martínez.

On the contrary, audiovisual, technological and new media art will continue to be presented under the umbrella of THE BLACK BOX programme, maintaining its philosophy as a space for the diffusion of new technological, electronic and audiovisual art, but with a new formal presentation. The curators Carolina Grau and Marc Olivier Wahler will be in charge of the selection.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Vic Muniz until 15.04 Baltic, Gateshead (UK)

Pictures of People will also be the first significant exhibition to focus exclusively on his remarkable portraits and has been made possible with the support of Albion, London and Renos Xippas Gallery, Paris. With over 30 works on display, it will showcase several series of work from the period 1996 – 2006, including his famous series Pictures of Colors, Pictures of Chocolate, Pictures of Magazines and Monsters and Divas.
With a strong sense of irony and a playful vitality, Muniz breathes a breath of life into iconic figures – both past and present. Hollywood stars appear alongside artists, revolutionaries and mythical creatures, not forgetting a few self portraits.
Presented as photographs, Muniz’s portraits are drawings with a difference and never cease to amaze. From chocolate and ketchup to diamonds and caviar, his artists’ palette is nothing if not extraordinary. Though his images are familiar – borrowed from popular culture and Old Masters artists – they are never what they seem.
Using an approach that the artist calls ‘the worst possible illusion’, he transforms the mundane into the magnificent through his masterful manipulation of his cleverly selected materials. Marlene Dietrich and Sophia Loren sparkle in diamonds whereas Che Guevara emerges from the dark in cooked beans and the Creature from the Black Lagoon appears to us in drops of black caviar.
Muniz constructs these images in his studio and captures the often temporary result on camera, preserving his ‘drawings’ as photographs; pictures of pictures.
In Pictures of Magazines, hole-punched paper circles from glossy magazines are used to portray both Brazilian celebrities and ordinary people. Muniz developed this series as a response to his time spent in Brazil, a country in search of its own identity in the face of an ever encroaching cult of celebrity.
Muniz is compelled by the role of images and the way in which they circulate in our media saturated world. By raiding and responding to the conventions of art history, he consciously uses and appropriates images for his own purposes, while his use of unconventional materials undermines the role of the original image and questions art historical tradition. His portraits and self portraits are just one part of a diverse practice that has encompassed skywriting, land art projects and photographs of the microscopic.