Tag Archives: Fine Art

ARTIST DISCOVERY #7

Painter: Guo Honwei (China)

Although Guo Hongwei might be well-known in the contemporary visual art world — I first noticed him yesterday. And I absolutely fell in love with these beautiful, washy, everyday things by the Chinese artist.

Photographs taken from Connoisseur Contemporary

Since the beginning of his career, Guo Hongwei has used oil painting and watercolor as a method to investigate the relationship between the objects he chooses to represent and the boundless possibilities of the chosen medium.

Only 30 years old, he has gained well-earned international repetition for his outstanding work.

About the artist

Born in Chengdu, China in 1982 and now based in Beijing, Guo Hongwei has gained international recognition in the contemporary art world for his unconventional treatment of his chosen medium and the simplicity at which he renders his subject matter. He first established his career and name with a series of work that is highly personal in nature. They are based on his own childhood photographs and mostly monochromatic in colour. What stands out is his technique of building and blurring his images, achieved from applying and diluting each layer of paint; which is meant to mimic the way memories get eroded, replaced and deleted.

 

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Filed under Art, Konsthopp, Paintings

AUTUMN ASSEMBLY IN AUGUST

Flavor of the month: Watershed

After a long and “oh-so-wanted” summer break — witch passed by “oh-so-amazingly-fast” — I can finally welcome my favorite season. The fall.

Although it´s sunny and over 20 °C outside my window (it doesn´t get any warmer here in Iceland) — all I can think about is misty days, multicolored leaves and my new umbrella.

Photos taken from google and pinterest

Watershed, a turning point or — a milestone are typical for this time of the year. Exciting assignments are coming up. Accordingly — the editors of Konsthopp are back to school, trying new exciting education. And I will finally move to my own “oh-so-wanted” apartment, with my “oh-so-fat” newborn.

Despite days loading work and other ethical obligations (e.g; changing diapers and doing boring housework!) — Konsthopp will try to keep on track, reporting live from the Nordic alternative art scene!

Happy fall everyone!

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Filed under Art, Art festival, Favourite of the month, Iceland, Konsthopp, Stockholm

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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Filed under Art, Ceramic Art, Collage/Clip Art, Design, Digital Art, Fashion, Group exhibit, Installation, Konstfack, Konsthopp, Media, Photography, Stockholm, Textile Art, Uncategorized, Visual Art

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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Filed under Art, Design, Digital Art, Drawings, Fashion, Group exhibit, Installation, Konsthopp, Paintings, Photography, Political Art, Reykjavík, Uncategorized, Video Art, Visual Art, Young Art

CURATING IS AN INTUITIVE & MAGICAL PROCESS

— Interview with Thale Fastvold and Tanja Thorjussen, LOCUS (Norway)

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

LOCUS: We met while studying curating at Telemark University College in 2006, and seeing as we both are artists, we discovered that we had a many common denominators in our views on curating as well. Thale is trained in photography/text from Rome and Oslo, and Tanja in drawing/painting from Bergen and New York. We decided to work together, and founded LOCUS art and curator group. The first thing we curated was a series of video art events in Oslo and Trondheim. Since then we have curated and collaborated on smaller and bigger art shows in Oslo, Voss, Nissedal and New York. We work as curators, artists, art consultants (for KORO/Public Art Norway) and writers. In 2009 LOCUS published the book “Kurator?” an anthology of interviews with, and texts by curators working in Norway.

What is the artistic field of your curatorial practice?

LOCUS: The most important aspect of curating is threefold, 1) the theme 2) the artwork and 3) how it is conveyed/contextualized within the given space.

We normally have a clear vision and focus regarding the theme of the exhibitions. Often it has been inspired by political, scientific or spiritual events. Developing a theme, we work very intuitively, and in some respects almost scientifically. We do a lot of research on the topic; we attempt to explore and excavate the theme, and we do not have all the answers until the exhibition/project is over. For example, in our book project “Kurator?”, we investigated how curators work in Norway today, and we didn’t know from the outset what we were going to find. When we curate, we invite artists we believe will respond to, and create an interesting dialogue based on the given theme. We look at a lot of artists and follow their work, so when we invite somebody to participate in a project we trust them and their process of working.

How an artwork or the theme is conveyed is also an important part of our work. For instance, for the video art events we curated, we decided to make the screening of the videos a “one time only”-event, over the course of one evening. Our intention was that the audience should view the entire work in a focused setting, not see the work broken up in parts, which often happen when video is showed in a loop and you walk in on a work in progress.

As to the artistic field of curating, we will always bring with us our background as artists. When we work with art projects, whether the outcome is a curated show, our own exhibition, or a book, the process will always be colored by our background/experience.

Yonder” in Galleri 69, Oslo (2008)

Yonder” in Galleri 69, Oslo (2008)

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

LOCUS: Yes, and no! We started curating video art since the media is easy to transport, and we could easily make pop up video art exhibitions in borrowed spaces.

It requires much more preparation organizing a bigger exhibition space with large paintings and installations, and it can be more expensive to produce, but in essence the process is the same. We are a nomadic curator group, we do not have our own gallery space and we never know in advance if we will get public funding for a project, so we are used to finding creative solutions to different obstacles. Other elements in preparing a show – the planning, applying for funding, writing project outlines, press releases, shipping and installation – are not very different from show to show, everything needs to be done. After 6 years of collaboration we have experienced that being two does not just double our capacity, it quadruples it and often makes us more efficient than working solo. We discuss, plan and organize, and the project never suffers since one of us can always fill in and back up if the other is preoccupied. We trust each other, communicate easily and are very much in unison with the projects we work on.

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

Thale: A curator needs to be open minded, flexible and good with editing, both when it comes to artworks and text!

Tanja: And be a good mediator and have a functional toolbox.

Blackening.” Galleri 69, Oslo (2008)

Blackening.” Galleri 69, Oslo (2008)

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?

LOCUS: It has opened up a wider area in which to explore and experience art. Artists always question the status quo, and now digital media is just that. But it is important to create the best way to present an artwork, as everything surrounding the work has a context, now video has established the black box, painting the white cube etc. so it will be interesting to see how digital media art will best be conveyed. Experiencing artwork is really very private, it is you and the work, and so is our interaction with our computer. It is especially interesting with the new Google art project, which makes museums and art available to the public through the computer, but for a curator it is also a great tool for studying curatorial decisions.

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

LOCUS: Yes, definitely. The curator is often the conveyor of meaning, the translator and the person who can help both audience and artists in forming a closer and better relationship with one another. The curator is also of great help to the artists; many artists want to focus solely on creating the work and don’t always wish to spend valuable time conveying their art to the audience.

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

LOCUS: Right now we are working on a show presenting our own work at the project space at Tegneforbundet in Oslo (which opens Sept. 27, 2012) where we through drawing, photo and installation investigate what happens to the soul after death, before next life cycle. We are very conscious about the space, lighting, sound etc, and want to create a very specific mood in the room. When we create a show with our own art we can be freer or more immediate in how we alter the room. When we work with presenting other people’s art, we have to work with the artist to find out what they want to achieve, and how the essence in their artwork can be most adeptly expressed. Placing meaningful objects like art in a room is very hands-on and instinctual, and as curators we try to be true to the artworks.

It is easy to discuss curating in an academic way, but it is very much an intuitive process, and a magical process, and we hope that these aspects of curating will be explored further in the future.

Thale: I started a window box gallery in Oslo last year, within the Pushwagner gallery, where each month I curate smaller shows with emerging artists, and I will continue that project. When I curate shows or work as an art consultant, I aim at including 50% male and female artists, and I also wish to showcase younger artists. Of course, the most important thing for me is to curate interesting shows, which to me are shows that arouse something in its viewers, and give the audience a new perspective, whether this is on society, contemporary art or both.

Tanja: Through art projects and curatorial projects alike I explore something I don’t know, but which stirs my interest.

Now I am working on a Performance Laboratorium (co-curated with Gudrun Flatebø), which will be held at the cultural space Galleri 69 & Kafe MIR at Lufthavna in Oslo this fall. Initially I thought it would be interesting to create a performance lab because I did not know much about performance, I did not think I fully understood the history of performance and what performance is, it is a very mysterious art form as it is so hard to define.

Kurator?” A book by Thale Fastvold and Tanja Thorjussen / LOCUS (2009)

PHOTOGRAPHS BELONG TO LOCUS

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

LOCUS: In 2004 two curatorial study programs were established in Norway, and since then we have seen an escalating professionalization of the Norwegian curator. Before there where mostly artists or art historians who did this job. Last year the Norwegian Association of Curators was founded, which is an important step in professionalization, and we think the society and the art world in particular is increasingly starting to see the value of the curator. There is a great interest in contemporary art, but with conceptualism, postmodernism and all the other —isms of the last 40 years, the audience sometimes depends on someone to convey the art. Curators can have this and many other functions. There are so many ways of curating and so many venues of discussing curating, like Konsthopp, so we think the future of curating is very positive and exciting!

LOCUS is an art and curator group established in 2006 by Thale Fastvold and Tanja Thorjussen.Both educated as artists and curators we have exhibited in New York, Oslo, Trondheim, Reykjavik and Zurich. LOCUS have curated video-art events, exhibitions and are collaborators on various art projects in Norway and abroad.

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Filed under Art, Artist books, Curator, Curator Talk, Konsthopp, Oslo, Uncategorized, Video Art, Visual Art

ARTIST DISCOVERY #3

Painter: Zoë Sua Kay (Portugal)

Originally from Lisbon, Zoë Sua Kay moved to England in 2001 and has been living in London ever since. She studied her Foundation Diploma at Chelsea College of Art and Design and graduated in 2010 with a BA in Fine Art from Middlesex University. Recently, the Portuguese painter was awarded with a scholarship for MFA course at the prestigious New York Academy of Art (class 2014) and will be joining the Academy in the fall of 2012.

These paintings are from her series; Self-Portrait (of me as a man)

Photographs belong to Zoë Sua Kay

For those who are on their way to London, the artist´s forthcoming exhibition “Recounting Palestine’s Stories: An Intervention” will be launched in June 2012 in collaboration with Al Madad Foundation.

Congratulation Zoë Sua Kay!

Artist: Zoë Sua Kay 

Upcoming event: Recounting Palestine’s Stories: An Intervention, London

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Filed under Art, Konsthopp, Net stroll, Paintings, Solo exhibit, Uncategorized, Visual Art

“MOMENTS OF ART AND LIFE”

Artist talk: Erla Silfá Þorgrímsdóttir (Iceland/Norway)

Since 2010 she has been working like a “spy”, recording found conversation in public spaces.

“In my mind the changing room became the scenario of the play Waiting for Godot. The trivial dialogue suddenly revealed itself to me and appeared as important. In that second it felt like the dialogue could tell me more about my own existence than the words of the greatest philosophers. Not necessarily by what was spoken, but the feeling it gave me of everyday life. The importance of the so-called trivial, while we are waiting to get some answers on our own existence”

“I can’t hear my eyes” by Erla Silfá Þorgrímsdóttir

Erla Silfá Þorgrímsdóttir got the first idea for her project “I can’t hear my eyes” as she was caught up between other’s people conversation in the changing room at her gym. Since then she has been paying attention to the subjective and the small voices around her in everyday life as she is interested in those voices that are usually not heard and not considered of big importance.

Erla Silfá might not be a much of a talker, but she is definitely a “hell of a listener!” Be sure not to miss out on her final exhibition — and the truth about our public conversations – at Konstfack in May this year.

Read our latest artist talk with Erla Silfá Þorgrímsdóttir here.

Photograph belong to Erla Silfá Þorgrímsdóttir

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Filed under Art, Artist Talk, Fine Art, Sound Art, Stockholm, Young Art