Category Archives: Digital Art

JEALOUS GUY

Blog discovery: The Jealous Curator

If you haven´t already met the Jealous Curator — it´s about a time.

There is one moment, in the first few seconds, when you look at a piece of art and know that you love it. It’s the moment when, if you’re an artist yourself, you look at it and feel a rush of uplifting inspiration… and total soul-crushing jealousy all at the same time. It’s when you walk away thinking, “Damn, I wish I thought of that.”

The Jealous Curator

As a daily visitor to her inspirational blog — I asked the active blogger for a favor. To name her favorite emerging artists of today — as an artists monitor and a noted aesthete. Her choses were the following:

Ben Skinner (Canada)

“Let´s pretend tomorrow night never happened” by Ben Skinner. White ink on black Alunpanel (2011). Image/Ben Skinner

Anne Lindberg (USA)

“Parallel 25 yellow” by Anne Lindberg. Graphite and colored pencil on cotton mat board (2011). Image/Anne Lindberg

Maurizio Anzeri (Italy)

“Giovanni” by Maurizio Anzeri.  Photographic print with embroidery (2009). Image/Maurizio Anzeri.

Deidre But-Husaim (Australia)

“Beauty Marks” (Bare) by Deidre But-Husaim. Oil on linen (2008). Image/Deidre But-Husaim

Anthony Zinonos (UK)

“Pillhead” by Anthony Zinonos. Collage.

The blogger explanation for the use of the “jealousy” term, which many people relate to a negative emotion, is:

I once heard someone say that when jealousy is kept inside it becomes toxic, but as soon as it’s said out loud, it transforms into admiration.

— The Jealous Curator

I  couldn´t agree more with her. Official jealousy can namely be a successful tool when it comes to appreciation and a sense of humor.

Blog: The Jealous Curator

Artists: Ben Skinner (Canada), Anne Lindberg (USA), Maurizio Anzeri (Italy), Deidre But-Husaim (Australia) and Anthony Zinonos (UK)

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KONSTFACK SPRING EXHIBITION ’12

Vernissage: 16th of May 2012, Konstfack (Stockholm)

A glimpse in photographs from the opening of the spring exhibition at Konstfack last Wednesday. The exhibition is open until Sunday 27th of May. Stay tuned for more photographs and interviews!

 Live show & performance by Dyke Hard

“The ceremony” by Tobias Larsson

“I wasn’t allowed to wear black” by Liv Pettersson

“Lugnt, Stillsamt, Vackert” by Julia Dalgren

“PATTERN ATTACK” by Lisa Dalenius

“Smara” by Emma Persson

“Girls Club” by Karin Kakan Hermansson

“Happy meal” by Supawan Sihapoompichit

Work by Ida Bentinger

“Extensions, retractions, and missing parts” by Bianca Niabuco

“Ramené” by Emilie Florin

Work by Yusi-Chen

Work by Jonna Fransson

Photographs by Konsthopp

You can check out Konstfack´s 2011 exhibition here and here!

Artists: Newly graduates with Bachelor and Master degrees from Konstfack

Date: 16th – 27th of May 2012

Place: Konstfack, Telefonplan, Stockholm

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IMAGINATION WITHOUT BORDERS

Closed: 21st of April – 6th of May 2012, Hafnarhúsið (Reykjavik)

Students from the departments of Fine Arts, Design and Architecture at the Iceland Academy of the Arts, exhibited their graduate projects at Reykjavík Art Museum – Hafnarhús, earlier this month. The exhibition is usually impressive and this year was no exception.

Let the pictures speak for themselves.

Photographs by Konsthopp

Washing machine, washing the Icelandic flag ; super-sized swing ; cloud machine ; gramophone (Jónófón) in new costume — the imagination was prevailing at every turn at Hafnarhúsið and wholly without any borders.

Cheers everyone!

Date: 21st of April – 6th of April 2012

Artists: Graduation students from Fine Arts, Design and Architecture Department

Place: Hafnarhúsið, Tryggvagötu 27, Reykjavik

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“CURATOR WILL ALWAYS PLAY AN IMPORTANT ROLE”

— Interview with Alexander Jean Edvard le Sage de Fontenay (Iceland)

When did you start curating? Tell us something about your educational background?

During my last couple of years in highschool (Menntaskólinn við Hamrahlíð) I attended numerous of art history classes and art classes. I had an especially inspirational art teacher that year, Louise Hazell A Harris, and I believe I am lucky that she has taught me. The first art show were I was directly involved in the planning, was held on my graduating year. It was an exhibition of her student’s works from one of her classes, which I went to as well. At her request, I helped the teacher promote it in my school, gather art pieces and I even made a flyer.

For me, the ball actually only started rolling for me quite recently. After I began studying Art History at The University of Iceland I got involved in a number of things. I started writing for the school paper (Stúdentablaðið), helped plan events for students studying art history and last but not least, opened a gallery with a few of my fellow students, called Artíma gallery. The reason we went into doing this was in our opinion a lack of practical courses which are available for art history students. This way we get to exercise our curatorial skills.

Our first exhibition opened in October last year (2011). I have been involved in two shows so far. The first one being a group exhibition of works by 14 artists from The Iceland Academy Of Arts. The second exhibition was called S/H/91-93 and was also a group exhibition of ten black & white works by ten artists who all study primary art education.

What is the artistic field of your curatorial practice?

I enjoy making art myself. I guess the artistic field of my curatorial practice is having a say in what art pieces are ultimately selected by the artists, arranging the pieces to ensure that the right mood is achieved in the exhibition space and also helping the artist find the best suitable way for his works to be presented.

Is there a difference in curating different field of arts, etc. paintings, videos, interactive works or a piece of net art?

Of course. Each medium has a mind of it’s own. The best exhibitions in my opinion, are those that include works of different mediums. And where the art pieces are arranged according to the nature of each exhibition space. In S/H/91-93 I had a few installations and a number of wall based works. I nurtured the artists needs while also filling the space accordingly, to create diversity. I tried to create a contrast with the wall-based art and used the installations in between to maintain balance.

From S/H/91-93. #1. “Án titils” by Magnús Ingvar Ágústsson #2. “Út fyrir rammann” by Krista Alexandersdóttir #3. “Undir smásjá” by Sólveig Eir Steward #4. “Eðlislega óeðlislægt” by Kristín Þorláksdóttir

What kind of qualities do you think a curator should have?

I think a curator should be personable and friendly. It is important for him to have a good relationship with the artist (or artists). He should be able to keep cool at all times. He should do little things like bring a pizza when those finishing touches are being added the night before opening a show.  While he should be friendly he should have leader skills and determination. A lot of things may be riding on a show. But regardless if the show is a success or not, the artist (or artists) should have confidence in the curator.

Do you think that new and digital media used in contemporary art has brought new aspects to arts and curating? Yes or no, explain why?

Internet art has been around since the mid 1990s. Since then it has evolved and so has, obviously, all technology. There was a “revolution” in digital video, making it easier for more artists to work with video. So that’s a definite: Yes.

In times of “You Tube” and the Internet, do you think a curator is still needed?

Yes. I think the curator will always play an important role in the art world. Websites such as Youtube, Vimeo, Flickr, Deviant art, Tumblr to name a few, have made it a lot easier for artists to promote themselves. It has also helped a lot of people find what they’re looking for and to discover new things. This does not make a curator less needed. I believe that just like people won’t stop talking to their friends in real life (offline) they won’t stop going to galleries and museums. Because seeing a work of art online is never the same thing as seeing it face-to-face as a part of an exhibition. Period.

What are your curatorial plans for the future? What are your personal wishes, hopes and perspectives in curating?

In April I will be curating an art show in Artíma gallery. It’s going to be the collected works of a couple of vivacious girls. They have shown a lot of potential. One of them is studying fine arts at The Iceland Academy of Arts and the other is in Reykjavik School of Visual Art. It is going to be collaborative work and some independent work from both of them. Video art, a few sculptures and I’m pretty sure there will be some wall-based art as well. I’m excited about that. In June there will hopefully be a big group exhibition to welcome the summer. There has been a discussion of collaborating with another student gallery, run by the fine arts department at The Iceland Academy of Arts. I would like to be part of that.

My wish is that future art galleries that are in similar scale as Artíma won’t have a hard time gathering funding. Unfortunately, today it is quite a task for galleries (even bigger ones than Artíma) to do this. Me and many of my fellow students are in agreement that for art to flourish “the little guys” have to be given some air to breathe.

Curators should be able to work completely hand-in-hand with artists. This is THEIR world. Artists are not supposed to be scared of consulting or collaborating with artist and vice versa.

What is the future of professional curating from your point of view?

Art history as we know it began in the 19th century. The University Of Iceland began offering art history courses less than a decade ago. In just that time a lot has happened. Curators have gotten more attention in Iceland. I believe things will only get better. In times of lessened funds towards the strengthening of artistic practice, I think interest in art and art history will thrive. As long as people keep working hard for what they believe in and others keep showing their support. Lengi lifi listfræðin! (e. long live art history).

From S/H/91-93. #1. “Triptych” by Valdemar Árni Guðmundsson #2. “Femme Individuelle” by Dýrfinna Benita Garðarsdóttir #3. “Lord Donald is a Pale Horse” by Eysteinn Þórðarson #4. “Undir smásjá” by Sólveig Eir Steward

Photographs by Fritz Hendrik Berndsen IV

Alexander Jean Edvard le Sage de Fontenay (1991) is an art history student at University of Iceland. Despite young age, Alexander is already taking his first steps as a curator. He is a member of Artíma gallerí, a curator run gallery in Reykajvik, managed by students of The University of Iceland. Alexander has been involved in two exhibition in the gallery so far, but Konsthopp first met him at the “S/H/91-93” where he curated ten black & white works by equally many artists. He will next be curating an exhibition at the gallery in April. We are already looking forward to keep an eye on this fireball in the future.

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PHOTOGRAPHS OF THE YEAR

Vernissage: 3rd of March 2012, Gerðarsafn (Kópavogur)

Press photos should reflect the situation in every society at any given time. That’s why I’m always a bit excited when the “Press photo of the year award” in Iceland is announced but Kópavogur art museum (Gerðarsafn) annually houses the event.

According to the selected committee, these pictures stood out in certain categories last year.

Category: “Daily Life” / Eyþór Árnason

Category: “Magazine photo of the year” / Kristinn Magnússon

Category: “Portrait picture of the year” / Rakel Ósk Sigurðardóttir

Category: “Sport photo of the year” / Kristinn Magnússon

Photographs belong to the photographers

For society critics and other thinkers it can be curious to compare the emphasis and trends in press photography between nations. I went to the “Swedish press photo award” last year in Stockholm and now this year in Iceland. At first sight, these two closely related countries seems to have almost nothing in common when it comes to media’s photo coverage. The Swedish press photos mirrors multicultural society, while the geographical isolation of Iceland seems to affect the Icelanders approach to press photography — sometimes in a very positive way.

Anyhow, I have to admit that I’m quite impressed how many Icelandic photographers have gained reputation and respect internationally — especially since most photographers of this country have to travel abroad to get their education. Examples of those includes the young fashion photographers, Saga Sig and Silja Magg and of course — the world known (and self-taught) documentary photographer Rax.

Don´t miss this years “Photograph of the year” in Sweden. The exhibition will be opened the 31st of March in Galleri Kontrast, Stockholm.

Date: 3rd of March – 7th of April 2012

Photographers: Various

Place: Gerðarsafn, Hamraborg 4, Kópavogur

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ARTIST DISCOVERY #2

Graphic designer: Emil Ásgrímsson (Iceland)

Emil Ásgrímsson has been studying in London for three years at the renown Central St. Martins College of Art & Design. His work is an eclectic mix of collage illustration and moving image inspired by epic landscapes, geology (his father is a geologist) and science. Emil plays with both digital collage and the process of the physical handmade aspect of moving image.
Aviator by Emil Ásgrímsson
Mermaid by Emil Ásgrímsson
Adventure by Emil Ásgrímsson
Sci fi by Emil Ásgrímsson
Film noir by Emil Ásgrímsson
Super2 by Emil Ásgrímsson

Photographs belong to Emil Ásgrímsson

This upcoming artist won the River Island Illustration competition for these work. Last night he opened his first solo exhibition at The Book Club in London.

I´m already looking forward to keep an eye on this one in the future!

Artist: Emil Ásgrímsson

Place: The Book Club, 100 Leonard Street, London

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THE DEMAND IS HIGHER THAN EVER

Curator talk: Marín Björt Valtýsdóttir (Iceland)

When did you start curating? Tell us something about your educational background?

My first experience with curating was back in high school, setting up our graduation art exhibition. We were many and had very different backgrounds, so it was quite a task putting up the show. However, we did work and the outcome was better than we had hoped fore! As for further curating for my behalf, there haven’t been many opportunities. Curating is not a part of our program in the arts department of University of Iceland, the classes that teach the subject are small classes and fill up quickly so it is difficult to get in them, so going abroad is the only option to become a professional curator. But since we do know what curating is and we are curious about it a student gallery was opened fall of 2011. The gallery, which is called Artíma Gallerí, is giving us opportunity to try out curating and finding other people that are interested in the subject of curating and running a gallery.

What is the artistic field of your curatorial practice?

Usually I deal with 2d artworks like paintings or drawings. It was interesting when we decided to include one of Hekla Björt Helgadóttir’s pieces, which consisted of a lamp, broken plates and a stone heart, in the 3rd show of Artíma Gallerí. Once we started planning, it turned out that the piece would work better as an installation using the afforded space in the gallery in a different way than we first envisioned.

Is there a difference in curating different field of arts, etc. paintings, videos, interactive works or a piece of net art?

In retrospect it didn’t seem to matter much to me in which form or medium the artworks were but of course sooner or later practical matters will need to be addressed. In an ideal situation, the curator takes away the burden from the artist, of matching the artworks to an audience in a meaningful way. In reality this often results in a very close collaboration between the curator and the artist, which can be slightly less glamorous. Hammering nails into the wall or holding the ladder while attaching support strings.

From Artíma #3, work by Hekla Björt Helgasóttir, curated by Marín Björt Valtýsdóttir. Photos/Konsthopp

What kind of qualities do you think a curator should have?

Curating is a broad field of work, and every show is different. I think the artist makes the biggest difference in putting up an exhibition and how fluently it goes. When the collaboration between the artist and the curator is good, magic can happen.

A good curator sees the needs of the artist and the exhibition and does what it takes to combine it in to an interesting exhibition. Flexibility and diplomacy is important, as are social and communication skills since a big part of putting up an exhibition is working with other people and finding common grounds to work from. A curator is also a facilitator, concerning herself with practical matters.

Do you think that new and digital media used in contemporary art has brought new aspects to arts and curating? Yes or no, explain why?

Digital media is very fascinating because it can be very vivid and alive. Due to my young age I cannot say much about the effects it has had on curating since digital media used as an art form is older than I am. What I can tell is that digital media and interactive works are becoming more and more popular in the museum world so the medium is marking its place in the ‘traditional’ art world.

In times of “You Tube” and the Internet, do you think a curator is still needed?

I don’t see the Internet as having much effect on curating, as in making curating unnecessary. Museums and galleries are becoming more and more popular each year and new art fairs seem to be popping up all over the world, so the demand for a curator, if anything, is higher than ever. Youtube creates an abundance of information; years worth of video are uploaded daily on Youtube alone. My partner pointed out to me that curating is engaged in actively by the online community. People have created channels or blogs with little or no original content, consisting of other people’s artworks both collecting and connecting them, cross media.

What are your curatorial plans for the future? What are your personal wishes, hopes and perspectives in curating?

Curating is a very interesting field of work, it offers you an exciting environment to work in, where you get to know artists and their work in a close and remarkable way. I hope to do more curating in the future since I find it an enjoyable experience. If I were to further my studies in curating, I would have to go abroad and at the moment I have no plans, I would be lying though to say that I haven’t looked into it.

What is the future of professional curating from your point of view?

Curating is a profession that seems to be on the rise. With more and more museums bursting up and art fairs existing in every country I think the field of curating is going to bloom in the coming years.

From Artíma #3, work by Hekla Björt Helgasóttir, curated by Marín Björt Valtýsdóttir. Photo/Konsthopp

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