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September 11, 2007

Secret for Snow Leopard: Yutaka Sone

 via e-flux:

Parasol unit foundation for contemporary art


Hong Kong Island (Chinese),(detail),1998
Carved marble
65 x 120 x 80 cm (25 5/8 x 47 x 31 in)
 

Secret for Snow Leopard:
Yutaka Sone

19 September - 16 December, 2007

Preview 18 September, 6 - 8pm
7:00 pm: Performance by
Benjamin Weissman
Phenomenolgy of Snow,
a fiction reading

Parasol unit
foundation for contemporary art

14 Wharf Road, London N1 7RW
T +44 (0)20 7490 7373
F +44 (0)20 7490 7373
E info@parasol-unit.org

http://www.parasol-unit.org


Parasol unit foundation for contemporary art is pleased to present Secret for Snow Leopard: Yutaka Sone, the first solo exhibition of Sone�s works in a UK institution.

Sone's great love and fascination for nature, combined with a wholly open approach to life and art galvanizes a highly unconventional art. Working in various media, Sone makes installations, performance art, and films; he paints; and like a traditional sculptor carves hard marble and crystal. A common thread recognisable throughout Sone's work is his willingness to take risks and experiment, which at times can make some works appear to be unfinished or in a state of flux.

Sone's work is deeply influenced by his experiences, particularly those he has had during various expeditions in the Himalayas and in the jungle -- two very different environments which for him represent extremes of life. In his work Sone fuses art with life, his vision informed by their infinite possibilities and a genuine desire to give tangible form to that which is quintessential in all things. This constant seeking for perfection is evident in all of his work.

In this exhibition, Sone shows several of his exquisitely carved marble pieces, some of which have never been shown before; a recreation of the jungle, a maquette-like architectural landscape that includes snow-capped mountains, rivers and tropical plants, all within the same self-contained world; and some twenty crystal snowflakes.

Yutaka Sone was born in 1965 in Shizuoka, Japan. He studied architecture at Tokyo Geijutsu University, but opted to become an artist. His work is held in public collections worldwide including: Art Institute of Chicago; Daros Collection, Z�rich; High Museum of Art, Atlanta; Kanazawa City Museum of Art, Kanazawa; Kunstmuseum Bern, Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art, Mori Art Museum, Tokyo; Museum of Modern Art, New York and the Toyota Municipal Museum of Art. In 2003 the Tate acquired Highway Junction 110-105 (2002) with funds provided by the 2003 Outset Frieze Acquisitions Fund. The artist lives and works in Los Angeles.

Secret for Snow Leopard: Yutaka Sone is accompanied by the publication of a full-colour catalogue

 

June 23, 2006

Sculpture @ Abington Art Center, naturally

 

via The Inquirer, Fri, Jun. 23, 2006:
This sculpture park is a natural
At Abington Art Center, works have an affinity for the outdoors.
By Edith Newhall

There is no better time than summer to explore sculpture parks, and the Abington Art Center has one of the more abundantly natural ones around.

Yes, there are manicured lawns graced by works by such well-known sculptors as Ursula von Rydingsvard, but you will also come across sculptures in its woodlands, all of which are close to trails. The park's sculpture tends toward organic and natural forms - von Rydingsvard's included - not the minimal or hard-edged, which sets it apart from most other sculpture parks.

Abington Art Center's latest exhibition, "Inside/Outside: Treelines," organized by the center's curator, Amy Lipton, underscores its predilection for the natural. Each of the artists - Joy Episalla, Robert Lobe, Thomas Matsuda, Jason Middlebrook, Chrysanne Stathacos, and Steve Tobin - has an obvious affection for nature and natural materials that can be seen in the large works installed in the sculpture park and in the smaller works in the center's galleries.

The outdoor pieces generally make more of a statement, the indoor exceptions being Lobe's large hammered aluminum sculpture, which seems to swoop out from the wall it is mounted on; Tobin's roomful of "Exploded Clay" pieces, 13 large potlike forms that contain pools of hardened, aqua-colored glass; and Matsuda's wall-mounted segments of burned tree trunk and graphite drawings on handmade paper.

Middlebrook, Episalla, and Stathacos outshine the others outside, mainly because you don't commonly encounter whimsical works like these in a sculpture park. By contrast, Tobin's cast-bronze tree roots, Lobe's aluminum treelike form, and Matsuda's five sections of a burned tree trunk, arranged soldierlike in a line, have a more formal, even mournful, presence.

Middlebrook's three wood-and-rope squirrel bridges are strung between trees on various parts of the property, and are winsome and funny but also reference monochromatic painting. Each bridge's wood slats are painted in gradations of one color: yellow, orange or green.

Stathacos' meditative Refuge, a Wish Garden consists of a real tree at the bottom of the front lawn that she has surrounded with sand, benches, and baskets filled with strips of cloth, rocks, sticks and flowers. You can draw in the sand with a stick, pile up rocks, or tie fabric to the tree, as numerous visitors appear to have done.

The least likely outdoor work is Episalla's large scrim photographic mural printed on semitransparent vinyl mesh. Hung between two trees in the woods, the mural depicts a vastly enlarged color picture of the Grand Tetons that Episalla found in her late father's office; it is a bit like a mirage or an English folly.

The mural will be interesting to see in November against a barren backdrop of leafless trees, as Lipton points out, but it's plenty amusing now.

Abington Art Center, 515 Meetinghouse Rd. Jenkintown, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays through Fridays (Thursdays to 7 p.m.), 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturdays. (The sculpture park is open daily during daylight hours.) Indoor exhibition through July 29; outdoor installation through Nov. 22. Information: 215-887-4882 or www.abingtonartcenter.org.

 

June 12, 2006

inigo manglano-ovalle: blinking out of existence

 


inigo manglano-ovalle: blinking out of existence

june 23 , 2006 - september 3, 2006

The Rochester Art Center is pleased to be the first Minnesota institution to present a large-scale solo exhibition of new and recent work by Chicago-based artist and recent MacArthur Foundation Fellow, Iñigo Manglano-Ovalle. Working in a variety of media including video, sound, photography, and sculpture, this exhibition represents the largest and most ambitious installation at the Rochester Art Center to date, utilizing all major galleries and devoting over 6,500 square feet to the artist’s unique vision. As such, this exhibition will expose the scope and breadth of the artist’s oeuvre to Minnesota audiences for the first time. For his exhibition at the Rochester Art Center, Manglano-Ovalle will present a wide-variety of works focusing on diverse subjects—climate, immigration and emigration, power and powerlessness, the effects of technology, international politics, identity, and the possibility of violence. Frequently collaborating with scientists, engineers, architects, writers, geneticists, and others, Manglano-Ovalle creates objects that are both technically complex and formally captivating. Two such objects become the foundation of the exhibition—Iceberg(r11i01) and Cloud Prototype #1.

Iceberg(r11i01) is based on concrete scientific data of an existing iceberg drifting in the Labrador Sea. This iceberg was scanned with the assistance of the Canadian Hydraulic Center utilizing both radar and sonar. Using data provided by the Center, the artist worked closely with Chicago architect Colin Franzen to create a 25-foot sculpture comprised of thousands of aluminum tubes and rapid-prototyped joints.

(above)
Cloud Prototype No. 2, 2003
fiberglass and titanium alloy foil 11 x 16 feet
Scale model of 30km-long cumulonimbus thundercloud based on actual storm database provided by the Dept. of Atmospheric Sciences, Univ. of Illinois and the National Computing Center, Beckman Institute, Urbana-Champaign. Courtesy Max Protetch Gallery, New York.

Cloud Prototype #1 is a large-scale sculpture of a cumulo-nimbus thundercloud modeled by the Department of Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Working with architect Douglas Garafalo, Manglano-Ovalle has transformed the numerical data scanned from this existing 50 kilometer wide thundercloud into a titanium-clad sculpture produced by computer-controlled milling machines frequently used by the automobile industry.

Both works begin to comment on ephemeral forces such as weather or clouds while examining patterns of migration uninhibited by political or social boundaries. James Rondeau, Curator of Contemporary Art at the Art Institute of Chicago, states: "Iñigo Manglano-Ovalle is engaged in a process of understanding how certain extraordinary forces and systems—man-made and natural—are always and already in the process of remaking the world. As an artist, thinker, and citizen he absorbs and transforms catalytic ideas and paradigmatic events, adapting them within the context of a formal, intellectual, multivalent visual practice. ‘What I want to represent,’ the artist declares, ‘is how the world represents itself to us.’ Over the course of the last decade, his protean achievements include, but are not limited to, activist-inspired public art, sculpture, film, sound, and photography—all of which fuse the politics of contemporary urban culture with poetic meditations on aesthetics, history, and identity." (James Rondeau, Event Horizons, Iñigo Manglano-Ovalle, Fudacion "la Caixa" 2003.)

About the Artist

Iñigo Manglano-Ovalle was born in Madrid, Spain and currently lives in Chicago, Illinois. He is a member of the faculty at the University of Illinois at Chicago. He has received the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation Fellowship, a Media Arts Award (1997-2001) from the Wexner Center for the Arts in Columbus, Ohio, a Media Arts Residency (1998-2000) from the Henry Art Gallery, University of Washington in Seattle, an ArtPace Foundation International Artist Residency Fellowship (1997) in San Antonio, Texas, and a National Endowment for the Arts Visual Artist Fellowship (1995).

Exhibition Catalog

A fully-illustrated exhibition catalog will offer critical essays by Kris Douglas, Chief Curator of the Rochester Art Center, Claire Barliant, Associate Editor of ARTFORUM, and an interview with Manglano-Ovalle by Yasmil Raymond, Assistant Curator at the Walker Art Center.

May 16, 2006

Busan Sculpture Project: 'Homage to the Earth'


via e-flux

Busan Sculpture Project in Busan Biennale 2006
(Special Exhibition)

Theme: 'Homage to the Earth'
Period: 05. 27. 06~08. 31.06 (97 days)

*Opening Ceremony: 05/ 27/ 06 16:00, Open Air Stage in Naru Park

Venue: APEC Naru Park
Artistic director: Tae-ho Lee, Professor, Kyung-Hee University
Artworks: 20 works from 12 countries
Host: Busan Metropolitan City, Busan Biennale Organizing Committee

Contact: tel. 82-51-888-6691~9 / FAX: 82-51-888-6693
http://www.busanbiennale.org / bbiennale@paran.com

Humanity’s brutal destruction of the environment has put our planet’s ecosystem in jeopardy not only for human beings but also for all living creatures. As a result, the discussion of environmental issues can no longer be restricted to a select group of environmental specialists, but must become the responsibility of all human beings. Caring for, and protecting our ecosystem is a challenge for each and every one of us.

For this reason, the Busan Sculpture Project - a special exhibition of the Busan Biennale 2006 – has made “Homage to the Earth” its theme. Among other things, the exhibit’s goal is to raise awareness of our natural environment, the broader eco-system and our role within it, as well as to encourage all human beings to take the appropriate measures to appreciate and care for the world around us.

“Homage to the Earth” will showcase 20 artists from 12 countries. Through their art, each artist will focus on the importance of the natural environment, highlighting the message of becoming responsible guardians of the Planet Earth. To facilitate this theme, and stress our relationship with the natural world, the exhibition will be composed of site-specific earth artworks located throughout the APEC Naru Park along the Suyoung River.

Moreover, to maximize viewer interest, the artworks will be dynamically displayed and visual overlapping will be minimized. Some of the exhibits will be set underground, or arranged in a line to represent the interconnectedness of all human beings with the earth. This approach promises to generate a novel experience for viewers – one that will result in lots of fun, while serving as a continuous reminder of our natural connection with the earth around us. 

[read more]

March 18, 2006

Blown Away at "Out of the Blue"

via NEWSgrist: Blown Away at "Out of the Blue"

Looking skyward for a spark

Artworks inspired by natural phenomena are the impetus of a new show.
By Edith Newhall
For The Philadelphia Inquirer, Fri, Mar. 17, 2006

It used to be that creative people tapped into the metaphorical possibilities of strange weather. I'm thinking in particular of Martin Johnson Heade's gorgeously glowering painting, Approaching Thunderstorm, which is said to have reflected his sentiments about the impending Civil War.

Headethunderstorm_1
Martin Johnson Heade (1819–1904). Approaching Thunder Storm, 1859.
Oil on canvas; 28 x 44 in. (71.1 x 111.8 cm). The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

In these more self-absorbed days, however, human creativity itself is increasingly compared to atmospheric and geological phenomena. "Out of the Blue," a group show of 22 contemporary artists at the Abington Art Center, asks one to consider the creative process as a kind of natural phenomenon. Why not?

Artists Joy Episalla and Joy Garnett, who conceived the exhibition, and Abington Art Center director Amy Lipton, who organized it, have tested their thesis with a broad range of works. Among the most clearly atmospheric and geological-event-evoking works include Diane Burko's painting of a volcano in Iceland; Emily Brown's painting of a jet trail floating in an otherwise blue sky; Dawn DeDeaux's photograph of a tree ravaged by Hurricane Katrina; and Garnett's two paintings of volatile skies, from her aptly titled "Strange Weather" series.

Dedeaux
Dawn DeDeaux's digital photograph "Shrouded Tree #1," can be seen
in the Abington Art Center's "Out of the Blue" exhibition through May 6.

The show's more abstract works are phenomena in themselves - among them, a pile of cellophane-wrapped candies by Felix Gonzalez-Torres installed to look as if they were spilling, lavalike, out of a fireplace; a shiny blue Mylar and urethane-resin wall piece by Carrie Yamaoka that resembles both a TV screen and a view through a jet's window; and a sculpture by Fluxus artist Geoffrey Hendricks that is composed of a suspended bird cage and watercolor paintings.

Fortunately, the exhibition does not take itself too seriously. It allows for the inclusion of a knitted baby's cap by Andrea Zittel and a molded plastic Frosty the Snowman, as well as museumlike glass vitrines containing such influential ephemera inspired by natural phenomena as Richard Long's artist book, A Walk Past Standing Stones (1980); a photograph of Robert Smithson's Glue Pour, 1970 by Christos Dikeakos; and a 1969 book, Airborne Camera: The World From the Air and Outer Space, by Beaumont Newhall. Heade would have been blown away.

Abington Art Center, 515 Meetinghouse Rd., Jenkintown, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays through Fridays (Thursdays to 7 p.m.), 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturdays. Through May 6. Information: 215-887-4882 or www.abingtonartcenter.org.

February 16, 2006

Uneasy Nature @ the Weatherspoon Art Museum

 

ROXY PAINE, Misnomer, 2005 (detail).
Stainless steel, 12.33 x 16 x 11.58 ft.
Image courtesy of James Cohan Gallery, New York.

Uneasy Nature

Lee Bul
Bryan Crockett
Roxy Paine
Patricia Piccinini
Alyson Shotz
Jennifer Steinkamp

February 18 - May 28, 2006
Opening Reception: Friday, February 17
6-7 pm Member's Preview / 7-9 pm Public Reception

Weatherspoon Art Museum
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro
Spring Garden and Tate Streets
Greensboro, North Carolina 27402-6170
336.334.5770

via e-flux:

The exhibition Uneasy Nature brings together sculpture, drawing, photography and digital animation by six internationally recognized artists who incorporate mythology and narrative to reflect on the evolving perception of nature in contemporary culture. Artists include: Lee Bul (Korea), Bryan Crockett (US), Roxy Paine (US), Patricia Piccinini (Australia), Alyson Shotz (US) and Jennifer Steinkamp (US).

Our impact upon the natural world is immense. We hear and see signs of it everyday, usually in terms of unseasonable weather, pollution and rising gas and water bills. But our influence thus far is miniscule compared to the idea of nature envisioned by biotechnology. The introduction of genetically engineered foods and animals and the ongoing research into stem cells present us with a whole new reality of potential organic forms and creatures. Today our idealistic concepts of nature are proving to be archaic, and we are re-awakening to a new version of nature that is of mythic character. The works in Uneasy Nature manifest this uncomfortable view of a nature strangely altered through cross-pollination with culture and technology.

Uneasy Nature is organized by Weatherspoon Art Museum curator of exhibitions, Xandra Eden. The exhibition is accompanied by a catalogue with full color images of the work in the exhibition, artists' biographies, and essays by Eden and British cultural historian, critic and novelist Marina Warner. The catalogue for Uneasy Nature is made possible through the generous support of the Elizabeth Firestone Graham Foundation.

Panel Discussion: Fact or Fear? Genetics and Public Perception
Weatherspoon Art Museum: Tuesday, April 25 at 7 pm
Celebrate your unique genetic code on National DNA Day by joining artist Bryan Crockett, Uneasy Nature; Dr. Vincent Henrich, Director of Institute for Health, Science and Society and Professor, Department of Biology at UNC-Greensboro; and Dr. Barbra Rothschild, Research Assistant Professor, Department of Social Medicine at UNC-Chapel Hill for an informative discussion on our fascination with and perception of genetic research and biotechnology. Free, limited seating.

For more information:
Loring Mortensen
336.256.1451
lamorten@uncg.edu

Deep North: a virtual expedition

 

Deep North: a virtual expedition...a year to the north pole
by jane d. marsching

deepnorth: a year to the north pole blog is complete and archived here for perusal--here are some ways to navigate through this year of research, information, ruminations, analogic connections, and wondering on the cultural imaginary of hte north pole and deep arctic
* click on the archived months in right column to view and read the year's entrie
* click on keywords in the right column to view groups of entries by topics
* type a word into the search field to find topics in the blog

Your comments are welcome and can be added by clicking on the comments link under each entry.

this year's blog, north2006: parallel conversations, is in development

Jane Marshing is 2006 recipient of a Creative Capital Grant

Jane Marsching (Roslindale, MA) Digital Arts
About Here and Later: Data Mining the North Pole – A series of digital images and sculptures, exploring both scientific and myth-based impressions of The North Pole, while detailing the collapse of the area due to environmental changes

February 07, 2006

Andrea Zittel: Critical Space

 

via Artnet (2/7/06):

A THORN TREE IN THE GARDEN
by Jerry Saltz

Andrea Zittel, "Critical Space," Jan. 26-May 27, 2006, at the New Museum, 556 West 22nd Street, New York, N.Y. 10011

The year 2005 was the hottest on the planet in recorded history; there is open water for the first time ever at the North Pole; the snows at the top of Mt. Kilimanjaro will probably disappear within 25 years. A power grid the size of Houston is being added to China every month; the United States, with only four percent of the world's population, emits more than 20 percent of the world's carbon. "Fifty years from now," a noted scientist speculates, "you may be living in a world where you don't go outside between one and four in the afternoon." In short, our increasingly brutish country, with its end-time mentality and barbarian attitude toward the environment, would gladly trade the last frog for cheaper gas prices.

The gypsy-visionary, social-scientist, explorer-architect, eco-rogue, control-freak artist Andrea Zittel will not be able to stop any of these things from happening. But her circuitous journey away from New York to what she calls her "High Desert Test Site," 40 acres of parched land two and a half hours east of Los Angeles and two hours south of Las Vegas -- as Zittel puts it, "23 miles past the sign that says 'Last Service for 100 Miles'" -- where the weather is brutal, the snakes are poisonous and the water is trucked in, is a glimmer of selflessness, creativity and fearlessness in the face of a technologically advanced culture flirting with geo-meteorological suicide. Zittel uses HDTS as a part-time studio and a site for other artists to execute ideas. Its existence is a reminder that chaos is a choice breeding ground for art -- an unknown zone and mental garden that can produce new thought patterns and exotic artistic fruit.

You might not know this from her current survey at the temporary headquarters of the New Museum. While expertly organized by Trevor Smith and Paola Morsiani, the exhibition, though fascinating, is so cramped it looks like Ikea. Perhaps "Critical Space," as the exhibition is called, should have been postponed until the museum is located in its new building. But never mind. This is New York, space is always at a premium, most of the artist's key works are here, and the show is a chance to sample Zittel's art and to ponder what it's about.

The Chinese "Book of Changes," or the I Ching, talks about "limitation" in terms of "ruthless severity" and as "leading to freedom." These ideas fit Zittel to a tee. Her rage for rules and protocols is ever present, as is her attraction to Constructivism, Bauhaus design and modernist architects like Richard Neutra and Rudolf Schindler, not to mention artists like Dan Graham and Robert Smithson. You can see this in the plain but subtly sexy "uniforms" Zittel has designed, made and worn for over 15 years. It's in her "living units," "eating terrains," and "cleansing chambers," each made to organize an aspect of one's life. "I love rules," Zittel says. "The only way that I can think of to be free from external rules is to create your own personal set of rules that are even more rigid. Rules are a way of liberating oneself."

In 2000, Zittel followed these rules to their logical and illogical extremes and found herself in the desert, a place that is ruthlessly rule-less. Here, Zittel's work perked up. After living in a trailer, she built several small structures, including a studio made of three contiguous shipping containers in a horseshoe configuration. As many as 14 people have slept on her front patio at once, or out back in the brush. HDTS is run on what she calls "no budget." It receives no funding, and seeks none. Thus, connections to Donald Judd's extraordinary kingdom of minimalism in Marfa, Texas, don't hold. Zittel, 40, is as possessed as Judd, but she's more ephemeral and investigational. She is exploring the place where art, entropy and self-sufficiency fuse. She'sRobinson Crusoe and Mad Max by way of Walden Pond, St. Augustine and Greenpeace.

Zittel contends that in today's art world it is "necessary to find new ways to convey meaning and create experience." She says, "The desert opens enough thinking space to reimagine all sorts of parallel new art worlds." Artist Pierre Huyghe concurs and talks about this "parallel world" as "a kind of counter-place that is outside other places but that also includes them." The desert's total lack of structure and its indigenous chaos combined with Zittel's utopianism and American gumption creates what she calls "gaps in which invention or change can happen." Curator Lynn Cooke eloquently refers to such places as "a position of elsewhere," by which she means artists like Zittel create situations "where like-minded people can go somewhat informally to work." Zittel's art is bigger in the mind than it is in person. This is not a failing. Her project entices the imagination and is a resonant example of a kind of thinking and acting that, with luck, will become more prevalent.

 

The Internal City
One of the more intriguing things about Andrea Zittel is her name, or rather her initials. Clearly she knows this. Her company is called "A–Z Administrative Services." These initials are a sort of philosophical readymade or hieroglyph that signifies completeness (from A to Z), incrementality (A, B, C), generic corporateness, the personal and the public. Aloud, they also sound like Aziz, the Muslim doctor in E.M. Forster's A Passage to India.

In Foster's book, Aziz takes two English women, longing to see "the real India," to the mysterious Marabar caves. There, amidst the thundering never-ending echoes of caverns that multiply the sound of the self until the self is annihilated, the older woman has a sort of existential seizure and glimpses her own death; the younger believes she has been molested by Aziz. This triggers a chain reaction in which Aziz is imprisoned, tried and eventually released.

The connection to A-Z is not only in the echo of the name, but in the metaphor of the cave, which for Zittel is the desert. The cave, like the desert, is elemental and has been there since the beginning. It is a place to contend with the chaos of the world, to confront nothingness, and understand one's scale; there, the cycles of life supersede all else. The Earth Mother/Sacred Womb aspect of the cave is present in the way Zittel talks about the desert as "a place to create a new organism." In this way, it's a kind of reverse garden, a symbolic image of the universe where reincarnation and the overcoming of death are thrown into high contrast. Zittel's desert is a place where tire tracks, dilapidated shacks, burned out trailer homes, broken down windmills and art merge; where science fiction, archeology and esthetics blur.

Passage to India ends with the brutal realization that England must vacate India for the two cultures to co-exist. Zittel's insight is that for art to thrive, sometimes it needs to go elsewhere.

More about Andrea Zittel:
Andrea Zittel: A Place Outside the Art Basel Herd, NEWSgrist (2/2/06)