Category Archives: Visual 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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Filed under Art, Collage/Clip Art, Curator, Curator Talk, Digital Art, Drawings, Fine Art, Multimedia, Net stroll, Photography, Print, Textile Art, Visual Art

GRAPEFRUIT / YOKO ONO

On-going: 6th of June – 16th of September 2012, The Modern Museum (Stockholm)

Yoko Ono moved from Japan to the USA with her family in the 1940s, and soon became a leading voice in New York’s most interesting artist circles, which worked with happenings, sound art, poetry and film. Alongside colleagues including George Maciunas, Marcel Duchamp and John Cage and others, Yoko Ono developed totally new modes of expression that questioned the artworld’s increasingly commercial preoccupations, and which left heroic high modernism behind.

The Grapefruit exhibition includes a selection of Yoko Ono’s ‘instruction pieces’, which invite us into imaginative ways of looking at existence and at the making of art. A number of experimental films and pivotal early works show Yoko to be a pioneer of conceptual art and the international fluxus movement, and also reflect the artist’s lifelong struggle for peace and love.

— Moderna Museet

Sophie Koch — Konsthopp’s representative of the night, was armed with her camera at the opening of the exhibition. And she got some great shots to share with us. Thanks to Sophie and we hope you enjoy!

All photographs taken by Sophie Koch / for Konsthopp

On-going: 6th of June – 16th of September 2012

Artist: Yoko Ono

Curator: Cecilia Widenheim

Place: The Modern Museum, Stockholm

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Filed under Art, Collage/Clip Art, Drawings, Installation, Live art, Multimedia, Music, Performance, Photography, Solo exhibit, Video Art, Visual Art

“I LIKE ALL KIND OF TUBES. THE YOUTUBE AND THE WHITE CUBE”

– Interview with Jacopo Saltarelli (Norway)

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

I was born in Firenze in 1459. I know this may sound strange, but it all makes perfect sense. You see, I started out as an apprentice goldsmith. Soon, however, I found that prostitution was something I felt comfortable with, and liberated by. Through my work, I befriended Leonardo da Vinci, and became a model for many of his masterpieces. At the age of seventeen, they payed to sodomize me in public, and I spent two month in jail together with da Vinci and three of his friends.This became a turning point for me. After we were released, I discovered a paradox in the space-time continuum, contained in Leonardo’s asshole. I traveled through it, and was catapulted forward in time to a small cabin by the Norwegian coastline. Some young artists from the city of Oslo happened to find me, and after a bit of small-talk, they invited me to be the curator of a new gallery space. So here I am, back from the past to talk about the future.

What is the artistic field of your curatorial practice?

This is a question of specifying some form of limit to curatorial practice, something which I believe contradicts the basic non-meaning of the term. If you’re a curator who only curates video art, or collage for that matter, you’re already a stuck up, pretentious kind of guy, who seeks artists who adapt to his or hers designated niché one way or the other, and the exhibitions you create will end up fetishistic at best.

I like to curate artists which relate to some of my personal perspectives. Including, but not exclusive to, sexuality, scientific negation, blasphemy, perfection, beauty, rebelliousness, time, space and immortality. And also, things. You could say I’m a bit of a fetishist myself.

Saltarelli Salong

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

There is no reason why we should separate these fields and exhibit them as different practices. This is artes vulgares thinking at its most anal, and I dont think the material should be considered superior to the idea and context of a given artwork. In my youth the church was the only place to rock. Today, I find strict categorization close to impossible with the new, transmutational practices in this android age.

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

Sadly, a curators traits is of an obnoxious charater. Public relation and sale, contextualization through media, projections of personal insecurities and so on. Overly charismatic and slick. A demigod wannabe. I think the curator is something which has emerged through the artists need to be collaborative, while still standing like a lone ranger on an heroic cliff. The lonely artistic genius is exactly that, a lonely arrogant man. Nothing gives us a greater thrill than satisfying our sense of exhaustion and ennui by polishing the bars of our prison cell. As jail, the museum leads to isolation.

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?

BWPWAP? Yes, for me, I prefer keyboards over sloppy handwriting. It’s a way of immortalizing our own monologues. #YOLO

Work by Frido Evers / Saltarelli Salong

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

I like all kind of tubes.The YouTube and the White Cube. One doesn’t necessarily exclude the other.

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

Exploring the depths and caveats of art through Saltarelli Salong I also wish to materialize myself in a 3D hologram, exhibit works in a church, and travel back to Italy to see the social change of the last 500 years and feel the salt of the earth once more. The intestinal wormhole of da Vinci has taught me that money is a means to and end, the end being death.

“The Man and the Tree” / In SALT’s latest exhibition, Geir Backe Altern plants an illegal tree outside of the gallery

Photographs belong to Saltarelli Salong

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

Why so serious? That is my biggest concern. Art should not be dull or afraid of its shortcomings. Let’s leave behind this slick, slimy, unreasonably complex sociolect which contemporary art personifies to the point of neurosis. Contemporary art as presented today is the tragedy of perfection. The curator is often blamed as the legitimatizing force for commoditizing an ostensibly unapproachable field of useless innovation. But this is of course not the curators fault.

SALT (Saltarelli Salong) operate through weekend exhibitions, happenings, screenings, concerts and workshops mainly focsed on exhibiting young artists based in Oslo.

SALT is named after Jacobo Saltarelli, an apprentice goldsmith and notorious male prostitute who lived in Firenze during the renaissance. In 1476 Leonardo Da Vinci was arrested, spending two months in jail, along with several young companions, on the charge of sodomy with the then 17-years-old Jacopo.

Jacopo Saltarelli is now the founder, curator and gallerist of SALT. He was in his own time accused of being ‘party to many wretched affairs and consents to please those persons who request such wickedness of him. SALT believes this to be much the same service delivered by the majority of contemporary art.

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Filed under Art, Curator, Curator Talk, Konsthopp, Oslo, Performance, Political Art, Visual Art

UN_CURATE_ABLE

On-going: 30th of June – 2nd of September 2012, Toves Galleri (Copenhagen)

Un_Curate_Able is an exhibition project in three parts, organized, curated and produced by the artists at Tove’s Gallery. The project unfolds over the summer of 2012 in the following stages:

1. An uncurated group exhibition in Tove’s own premises, which examines and presents the current interests of Tove’s artists.

2. A re-curating of the exhibition in Fatforms space, an artist and curator-collective in Amsterdam. In this exhibition, Tove’s artists mix the roles of artist and curator, and thus renegotiate the initial positions of the first exhibition.

3. And finally, a contribution to the art fair during Copenhagen Art Festival, in which the three stages of Un_Curate_Able are documented in a live editing and production process, that results in a publication presented on a finissage at Tove’s Gallery.

Photographs and text by Amir Zainorin

Artists: Christian Jeppsson (SE), Hannah Heilmann (DK), Simon Damkjær (DK), Pind (DK), Jacob Jessen (DK), Honza Hoeck (DK), Uffe Holm (DK), Sandra Vaka Olsen (NO), Rasmus Høj Mygind (DK)

Date: 30th of June – 2nd of September 2012

Place: Toves Galleri, Vesterbrogade 97, Copenhagen

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Filed under Amir Zainorin, Art, Copenhagen, Fine Art, Guest blog, Visual Art

THAT’S A SECRET

In his latest performance “Man against a wall”, Elias Björn invited the public to sit down on a stool beside him (if they were interested) and see his penis, which had a flower placed in his urine tube. Beside that he stood leaning against the wall for about 30 minutes.

This is what Elias says about his artistic goals:

“With my masculinity interest I wish to broaden the discussion of what a male is and should be”

20120710-114140.jpg

Photograph taken by Alvaro Campo

Even though his most memorable moment as an artist is a secret, Elias Björn was kind enough to share with us his thoughts on our questions in Konshopp´s latest artist talk. To read the whole interview, click here

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Filed under Art, Artist Talk, Favourite of the month, Live art, Performance, Photography, Sociopolitical art, Stockholm, Video Art, Visual Art

WHERE DO WE GO FROM HERE?

Final words: The Icelandic Love Corporation

It’s the last day of June and time to move on. Before we continue onto the summer — keeping a lower profile on the country side — we are wrapping up the “flavor of the month“, closing June with an artistic work that touches upon existential and political issues, which is theatrically staged with a humorous angle — in a peculiar fusion of realism and surrealism…

Happy summer everyone!

The Icelandic Love Corporation — Eirún Sigurðardóttir, Jóní Jónsdóttir, Sigrún Hrólfsdóttir and Dóra Ísleifsdóttir (who left the group in 2001) — met in Reykjavík, at the Icelandic College of Arts and Crafts. Their first big performance was “The Kiss”, featuring the artists kissing and was broadcasted on national TV in 1996.

The Kiss / Photo taken from ICL’s homepage

A kiss — they say — that was a little bit longer than a friends kiss but a little bit shorter than a lover’s kiss. In the end of the performance one of the artists kissed the camera lens and in the meantime, sent a kiss to every home in the whole country.

“With this performance we were trying to spread love and good feelings,” Sigrún says (in Grapewine 2007).

And since then — since that first kiss — the mission of the group has only expanded in line with their steadily growing career.

Women good enough to eat / Photo taken from ILC’s homepage

To The Icelandic Love Corporation, there are no rules — anything goes and nothing is irrelevant. Even though spreading love and good feeling is a part of their performances, The Icelandic Love Corporation has never been afraid to go all the way. Humour, femininity and carelessness is mixed with political thoughts and serious topics in their work, which is mostly performative — depending on time, place and “had-to-be-there” moments.  The group is enigmatic and their vibrant, life affirming work is both transient and anonymous. It’s not resistant to pin-pointing or analysing — and trying to do so is rather futile. Their work is honest — and refreshing — with a serious undertone that isn’t unwieldy. As is written in an interview with the group in the SiouxWire Annex from 2006:

“As a whole, their body of work is like an ornate diary, a window into their own personal journeys with the most incredible, enlightening outlook”.

“Where do we go from here?” / Photographer: Páll Stefánsson

Through performances and other mediums (including installations, prints, textile, sculptures, poetry, photography and videos), the group works to breakdown the distance between art and audience, and their projects often result in participatory events or public offerings. In one of their latest collaboration with Lilith Performance Studio in Malmö, the group created — in a living web of 5000 nylon pantyhose — a singular visual experience “Think Less, Feel more” that worked on irrational levels of the thinking process. The performance had its starting point in the visible and invisible contacts between people — conveying experiences of control and lack of control, conflict, sensitivity and elasticity …

… taking the performance artform just a one step further.

Think Less – Feel more / Photo taken from Lilith Performance Studio

The Icelandic Love Corporation (Gjörningaklúbburinn) was established by four Icelandic women in 1996 and since then, the group has gained a reputation both in Iceland and abroad. The fourth member (Dóra Ísleifsdóttir) left the group in 2001 but the three remaining members; Eirún Sigurðardóttir (1971), Jóní Jónsdóttir (1971) and Sigrún Hrólfsdóttir (1973), have kept on making artwork together, tour the world and surprise both audience and bypassers with innovative performances and lasting by-products including installations, sculptures, prints, textile, photographs, poetry and videos. Believing in the power of collaboration, the ILC’s history counts more than 200 exhibitions, as they’ve performed in small galleries and large museums, collaborated with renowned artists and musicians (f.ex. Björk) and invaded public spaces in major cities across the world. Their work can be found found in numerous public and private collections. 


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Filed under Art, Choreography, Documentary, Iceland, Installation, Live art, Media, Music, Performance, Photography, Political Art, Print, Reykjavík, Sculptures, Sociopolitical art, Sound Art, Textile Art, Video Art, Visual Art

THEATRE OF LIFE ARTISTRY

Net stroll: The Artist Theater (Iceland)

It might sound risky — or even ridiculous — to bring visual arts into the traditional theater environment. After all, the theatre  is (most of the time) a vast establishment where experiments are usually not allowed.

Ásdís Sif Gunnarsdóttir / Photo by http://www.mbl.is/ Skapti

The “Artist Theater” is a group of artists from different directions that make glamorous evenings of performances in the basement of The National Theater in Iceland.

The group was originally founded at Klink og Bank in 2004 and has been working together every now and then, ever since.  In The Artist theater the audience can expect anything, the work is rarely rehearsed and the artist perform on each others work.

The Artist theater 2012 / Photo by Ingvar Högni Ragnarsson

In arts — the joy of creation is often hidden in the final outcome and is therefore totally out of sight from the audiences. This is dissimilar to what takes place in the Artist theater, where the process of creation is often in real time and for that reason — very visible.

Snorri Ásmundsson, an artist and a member of the group wrote this to explain the phenomenon further:

The phenomenon of The Artist theater is in fact undefined, founded by performance artists who had the need to have a go at existing methodology and format of performances and the theater. In Iceland there exists a strong tradition for the art of performances, here a very unique scene has evolved. A scene that surely needs to be regularly explored. Our size and geometrical isolation certainly effects this need.

Snorri Ásmundsson

Feedback of the past performances have been strong and seems to be significant in today´s Icelandic cultural life. The Artist Theater wants to evolve, awaken and contribute to all people who are ready to accept.

The Artist theater 2012: Snorri Ásmundsson, Ásdís Sif Gunnarsdóttir, Ingibjörg Magnadóttir, Ragnar Bragason, Saga Sigurðardóttir, Margrét Bjarnadóttir, Ragnar Kjartansson, Kristín Anna Valtýsdóttir, Rakel McMahon, Ástrós Elísdóttir, Símon Birgisson and guests.

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Filed under Art, Favourite of the month, Iceland, Konsthopp, Live art, Net stroll, Performance, Reykjavík, Sociopolitical art, Visual Art