Spreading fear and mayhem in the visual arts.

Archive for May, 2011

Nicola Samori at Galerie Christian Ehrentraut
, Berlin

by Suzanne on May 24th, 2011

La Storia by Nicola Samori, oil on copper (?), 2009 - click to enlarge

Nicola Samori is one of those artists I have been meaning to post about for a long time now - ever since I discovered his stunning oeuvre via the lovely and ever informative Samantha Levin.

His work struck an immediate chord with me as it exemplifies a certain poetic and narrative deconstructive (in the truest meaning of the word) trend that I've witnessed with a bunch of other young artists.

Most remarkably of course the great Titus Kaphar, in a more aggressive manner Valerie Hegarty, and even - in a more satirical and playful sense - Seb Patane and Ruth Claxton. The list could beyond doubt go on, but my brain is very leaky.

J.V. by Nicola Samori, oil on copper (?), 2009 - click to enlarge

Nicola Samori's works, however, are a lot darker and more nihilistic than any of his above contemporaries' and that's precisely why I find them particularly mesmerising.

He's currently exhibiting new works in the 13 group show at Christian Ehrentraut in Berlin.

Please note that the works featured here are from 2009 so you probably won't get to see the exact ones.

Details below.

J.V. by Nicola Samori, oil on panel, 2009 - click to enlarge

On show: May 13 - July 9, 2011

Address: Galerie Christian Ehrentraut
, Friedrichstraße 123, 10117 Berlin (U-Bhf Oranienburger Tor), Germany, tel: +49 (0)30 4403 8385, email: mail@christianehrentraut.com | Map

Gallery hours: Tue - Sat: 11 AM - 6 PM

Preview works | Press release

Artist's website

Jared Joslin's "Stop, Look & Glisten" at Firecat Projects, Chicago

by Suzanne on May 24th, 2011

Black Mask by Jared Joslin, oil on canvas, 2010

I guess I have always been a sucker for a masked beauty and my friend Jared Joslin really does seem to share this affliction, in fact, his circomania has so irreversibly progressed that I sometimes wonder whether he is a technicolor cast member of Freaks who time-travelled into the future to share his observations and obsessions with us.

If you're in Chicago between now and mid-June, you have a chance to find out for yourself at his Stop, Look & Glisten solo show at Firecat Projects.

The show has already opened but the official reception isn't until this coming Friday. More details below.

Opening reception: May 27, 2011, 7 - 10 PM

On show: May 23 - June 18, 2011

Address: Firecat Projects, 2124 N. Damen Ave., Chicago, IL 60647, USA, tel: 773.342.5381

Gallery hours: Mon - Sat: 10 AM - 5 PM

Artist's website

Jared Joslin on the WurzelForum®

... and that's how babies are born.

by Suzanne on May 23rd, 2011

I have absolutely nothing to add.

© Married to the Sea, 2011 - click to enlarge

Grafikdesign im Jugendstil at Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe, Hamburg

by Suzanne on May 21st, 2011

Den Reinen ist Alles rein, den.... from Jugend 1896, Band 1 (Nr. 1-26), page 289 - click to enlarge

Okay, so I'll freely admit that I took the announcement of a special Jugendstil exhibition at MKG Hamburg as an excuse to obsessively plunder the online archives of Munich/Leipzig's weekly fin-de-siècle Jugend magazine that the University Library Heidelberg kindly put online for... err... 4 hours?

Die Kugelläuferin by Fidus from Jugend 1896, Band 1 (Nr. 1-26), page 297 - click to enlarge

You may have seen some of the more symbolist pieces - mainly works by Hugo Reinhold Karl Johann Höppener a.k.a. Fidus - pop up on various Tumblrs around the end of last year fueled by an article on John Coulthart's feuilleton, if I'm not mistaken.

Scene im Hades from Jugend 1896, Band 2 (Nr. 27-52), page 815 - click to enlarge

At any rate, if you have some time on your hands to check out the archives, it is indeed very interesting to witness how styles changed from 1896 to around 1905 - in the case of Jugend magazine, you'll notice a shift from the frivolous to the restrictive, from the decorative to the minimalist, from the experimental to the organised, the ornamental to the photographic. It's a very curious and somewhat melancholy thing how layout changes and ever more invasive ads rang in modernity in the microcosmos of an arts and crafts magazine.

Der Wolken[...] by Fidus from Jugend 1896, Band 1 (Nr. 1-26), page 60/61 - click to enlarge

If you pay very close attention, you may even find some rather dark pieces by Käthe Kollwitz as well as a multitude of ever more ridiculous and subliminal Odol ads (i, ii, iii, iv, v, vi - the list could frankly go on forever, but HELL, I never even liked Odol).

Am Grossen Gitter by Fidus from Jugend 1905, Band 1 (Nr. 1-26), page 309 - click to enlarge

Back to the exhibition though: It opened yesterday at Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe (MKG) in Hamburg and will remain on display until the end of August. Its title Grafikdesign im Jugendstil. Der Aufbruch des Bildes in den Alltag promises a very transdisciplinary approach to the osmotic Jugendstil, the "explodierenden Bilderwelt" as the MKG puts it and although I haven't received the official preview images yet, I am confident that with 350 artworks from the turn of the century, this is an exhibition of high educational and aesthetic value.

I can still remember my first visit to the MKG and their collection of Jugendstil furniture, jewellery and art is already breathtaking. Add to that hundreds of graphic works that have influenced neo-symbolist artists of today to an astounding degree, then I really wouldn't miss it.

All details below.

Das neue Strahlen from Jugend 1896, Band 1 (Nr. 1-26), page 81 - click to enlarge

On show: May 20 - Aug 28, 2011

Address: Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe, Steintorplatz, D-20099, Hamburg, Germany | Map

Gallery hours: Tue - Sun: 11 AM - 6 PM, Thu: 11 AM - 9 PM

Admission: €8

Press release

Jugend Magazine website

Jugend Magazine scans online

Tessa Farmer & Amon Tobin at Crypt Gallery, London

by Suzanne on May 19th, 2011

UPDATE MAY 25, 2011: Here are a few installation images of the ISAM as well as her ongoing Nymphidia show at Danielle Arnaud taken from my Flickr (incl. 2 older photos of Tessa's work):

From the Little Savages series by Tessa Farmer, 2007 - click to enlarge

This sure sounds like a very promising audio-visual collaboration: Tessa Farmer & Amon Tobin will be showing ISAM - Control over Nature in London and Paris.

Opening at St Pancras Church's amazing Crypt Gallery this coming week, Farmer's apocalyptic insect savages will provide the backdrop for Tobin's new soundscapes contained within his new album.

From their press release:

"The collaboration perfectly captures the themes surrounding ISAM: sensory deprivation, disorienting situationism and the mechanization of natural things."

Ethereal photographs of Farmers's intricate work shot by Pelle Crepin will also feature in the limited edition booklet that's been released with Tobin's new album.

Audio-visual live performances of ISAM will be held throughout June in Berlin, Brussels, Paris and London. Please refer to the ISAM site for more information. Details of the London show below.

Amon Tobin & Tessa Farmer 'ISAM: Control Over Nature' Preview from Ninja Tune on Vimeo.

Opening reception: Wed, May 25, 2011, 6 - 9 PM

On show: May 26 - June 3, 2011

Address: Crypt Gallery, St Pancras Church, Euston Road, London, NW1 2BA, tel: 020 7388 1461, email: info@cryptgallery.org.uk | Map

Gallery hours: 11 AM - 5 PM

Press release

Artist's website

Tessa Farmer on the WurzelForum®

... and in other visionary, sequential and plain heartbreaking news:

i) Check out Winnie Truong's amazing studies:

ii) Kindred spirit Lynn Kost is leaving Lucerne's Fumetto Comix Festival after 7 years - 5 of which directing it - and he will be greatly missed as he combined nerd-dom and connoisseurship like no other and I'm actually pretty devastated about this news. So long, Lynn... (,_,)

iii) Li-Wan and Guo Zhongfan both had a day they'll never forget...

Cindy Wright at Mark Moore Gallery, Culver City

by Suzanne on May 19th, 2011

Collector's Item by Cindy Wright, oil on linen, 2010 - click to enlarge

Belgian photorealist Cindy Wright's new solo show entitled Reality Can Be The Strangest Fantasy will be opening this Saturday at Mark Moore Gallery.

For the first time ever, her oil paintings (pictured here) and charcoal drawings will be shown together - both showing an intense Victoria Reynoldesque obsession with the tactile, the visceral, the tissue, the texture, the fabric of things.

If this exhibition won't convince you to embrace cannibalism, I don't (want to) know what will.

Details below.

Mickey by Cindy Wright, oil on canvas, 2008 - click to enlarge

Opening reception: May 21, 2011, 6 - 8 PM

On show: May 21 - July 9, 2011

Address: Mark Moore Gallery, 5790 Washington Blvd., Culver City, CA 90232, USA, tel: 310.453.3031

Gallery hours: Tue - Sat: 11 AM - 6 PM, and by appointment

Preview works | Press release

Artist's website

Francesca Lowe at Riflemaker, London

by Suzanne on May 19th, 2011

UPDATE MAY 23, 2011: Please see a few impressions of the show from my Flickr:

Ascend by Francesca Lowe, oil on canvas, 2010 - click to enlarge

I'm very excited about Francesca Lowe's forthcoming Headland: Woman in a Landscape exhibition which will be opening at London's Riflemaker this coming Monday.

With an oeuvre that brings together the abundance of Julie Heffernan, the hybridity of Heidi Taillefer and the menagerie of Josh Keyes and paints it all in a dystopian watercoloury sweetness and on a huge scale, Francesca Lowe surely knows how to aesthetically amalgamate and wow.

More details below.

Madonna's Legacy by Francesca Lowe, oil on canvas, 2010 - click to enlarge

On show: May 23 - July 2, 2011

Address: Riflemaker, 79 Beak Street, Soho, London W1F 9SU, UK, tel: 020 7439 0000, email: info@riflemaker.org | Map

Gallery hours: Mon - Fri: 10 AM - 6 PM, Sat: 12 - 6 PM

Preview works | Press release

Artist's website

Featured artists, ArtNerd memberships & how to get in touch (don't)

by Suzanne on May 18th, 2011

Just a quick note to let you know that I finally got a chance to update the featured artists section and it's now linked directly from the header for easier access - giving you an overview of what I've featured here over the years (minus the posts I forgot to tag/before tags were invented, blergh). Well done if you can find yourself on the list!

There's also a lot of new stuff on the forum and I would like to draw attention to two things, mainly the idea of a book and movie club.

Also new are Eyeballs and Political Comics and Symbiosis is fast becoming the new Cephalopoda Erotica & Vatican Pin-Up & Holy Fashion thread.

ArtNerd is still accepting memberships and in case you want to get in touch with me in any way, the sidebar always tells you how but I know that lots of you are getting this via RSS, so here's how:


Please note that email will take the most patience, that I use Facebook mainly for rants, Twitter for x-posts and Flickr and Last.Fm are only updated every other apocalypse. So BASICALLY, leave me alone! ^____^

Aron Wiesenfeld at Arcadia Fine Arts, New York

by Suzanne on May 13th, 2011

Snowbed by Aron Wiesenfeld, oil on canvas, 2011 - click to enlarge

It's of course always a great delight to get show announcements from Aron Wiesenfeld (previously featured here), but his recent email was particularly epic - presenting a huge load of new works that will go on show at Arcadia in New York tomorrow afternoon.

The elusive master of putting the uncanny in the innocent (Communion), has been using more and more subdued colours, the shades are getting ever colder and we see a lot of protagonists in these new works in resigned battles against the forces of the elements, struggling barefooted through the snow (Clear Lake) standing exposed in windy weather and frosty marram grass (Ingrid), being engulfed by the gushing sea (The Nightingale) or treading towards the approaching tide under thunderous skies (Ana).

These monochromatic charcoal works are juxtaposed with more narrative works in oil (even if that narrative is rather obscure and abruptly halted by the borders of the canvas) enjoying a broader but nevertheless muted colour palette.

The centerpiece of the new series is clearly the zoomed out landscape view of a groom-less wedding party - coming from nowhere and going into the unknown, sleep walking solemnly over icy railway tracks in front of the menacingly black mouth of a giant tunnel, followed by a wild fox and observed by a pregnant woman.

Show details below.

The Night by Aron Wiesenfeld, oil on canvas, 2011 - click to enlarge

Opening reception: May 14, 2011, 4 - 6 PM

On show: May 11 - 29, 2011

Address: Arcadia Fine Arts, 51 Greene Street, New York, NY 10013, USA, tel: 212.965.1387, email: arcadiafa@aol.com

Gallery hours: Mon - Fri: 10 AM - 6 PM, Sat - Sun: 11 AM - 6 PM

Preview works

Artist's website

Cornelia Hesse-Honegger's "Bilder einer mutierenden Welt" at Les Complices, Zurich

by Suzanne on May 12th, 2011

Ladybird beetle near Three Mile Island. Dent and a black growth on wings by Cornelia Hesse-Honegger, watercolour, 1991 - click to enlarge

My favourite Swiss scientific artist, Cornelia Hesse-Honegger, who has been following in Maria Sibylla Merian's footsteps, gained well-deserved worldwide praise and scientific recognition with her 1990 series of minute illustrations of deformations of insects she found around the core of the disaster area of Chernobyl. She continued her investigations and entomologic research by analysing insect mutation and deformation around Swiss nuclear power stations, then extending her radius to Europe and the United States (see example above).

She calls her method Seh-Forschung and her website's title is Wissenskunst and I think these terms really sum up her life and work perfectly.

Fabric Frontline's Andi Stutz was so impressed by her work that he devoted a series of stunning silk (oh, the irony!) scarves to her cause. And even though I very much doubt most Züriberg millionaire's wives have actually looked at the insects closely enough to discover they're all mutated and disfigured, exactly therein lies the genius of such a collaboration.

With a rare talent to zoom in closely on a globally important issue and combine ecologically relevant information, a political agenda, microscopic scentific precision and a zen-like pointillistic aesthetic that dispels any horror vacui, Cornelia Hesse-Honegger's current Bilder einer mutierenden Welt show in Zurich is one not to be missed.

All details below.

Various insect mutations by Cornelia Hesse-Honegger, watercolour - click to enlarge

On show: May 11 - June 11, 2011

Address: Les Complices, Anwandstrasse 9, CH-8004 Zürich, Switzerland, tel: 043 243 88 77

Gallery hours: Thu - Sat: 2 - 6 PM

Press release & preview

Artist's website

The astounding Heteroptera monograph on Amazon UK

And while we're so entomologically inclined, I would like to share this sweet trailer for the great Japanese movie Beetle Queen Conquers Tokyo with you that London's Horse Hospital will be screening beginning of June: