Tag: event

You Got a Little Something On Your Face

2501Art & Geometry

Every artist experiences the dreadful ‘artist block’, but Lee Griggs seems to have no grasp of such ridiculous notion, in his on-going series Deformations. When we wanted to talk about geometry, we couldn’t have imagined such a literal approach – his subjects look like they have swallowed it whole and forgot to spit out the bones. A cross between a cartoon character taking the shape of whatever it has eaten, or a Nightmare On Elm Street, comes this bewitching and intriguing digitally 3D scanned series.
Grigg’s distorted utopia, where aliens are birthed, makes you scrutinize these freakish beings whilst peering through their disturbingly life-like masks. Each face as gruesome as the next one, we discover that we have somehow dug ourselves into a hole – searching for more as we scroll down in anticipation to squint and squirm in our seats. Hopefully not coming across a Paul McCarthy scene reenacted with these creatures.
Grigg’s 3D scanned faces are downloaded from the production house Ten24 and rendered in a program called Arnold. What makes these creations more unsettling is their resemblance to human-faces, rather than resorting to colour or pigment permutation. The artist admittedly constructs these alien-human visages without even himself knowing the end product, simply experimenting with the original scan. His goal for the project is to create complex images with detailed deformations. The artist is fascinated with ‘blurring’ the lines between the real and surreal, and as a result has us ‘blocked’ in what he will come up with next.
The anthropomorphic faces will fascinate, horrify and make someone point out to you to ‘stop staring’. We sure couldn’t, so we’ll let it pass this time and resist pointing.
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The Titanic ‘Empty Lot’ Drew Us In Like One Of Leo’s French Girls

2401If you enter Tate Modern from ground level, you would certainly be forgiven for thinking the installation was under construction – where are the work-men? The idea of ‘under construction’ perfectly epitomises Abraham Cruzvillegas’ new commission piece Empty Lot, for the expansive and eminent Turbine Hall.
This is a show of two halves, what begins with eager anticipation ends with frustration.

Getting closer and closer, rearing up above you like the prow of a huge ship, the triangular deck slices through the space. We instantaneously remember the opening sequence of ‘Titanic’ where the vessel imposingly looms over the crowd. The awe builds with each step; Cruzvillegas’ titan of a structure perches upon a matrix of scaffolding, with its perimeters lit up by illuminated masts.

The mezzanine level, however, delivers a very different perspective. The deck is really more of a garden allotment – a geometric field of potted soil. The scene is striking, absorbing but extremely irritating. You want to walk along the artist’s floating floor and get down and dirty with the earth, but that is simply not possible. Instead, you must squint out the wealth of details and if you don’t have perfect vision, we wish you good luck.

The desire to botanise is strong. The soil comes from 36 sites all across London, from Peckham Rye to Buckingham Palace, yet nothing has been planted. This is a garden not in bloom. In a city of withering wilderness, where land is being gobbled up for oil and property development, Empty Lot is a blatant alarm against an endangered Eden.


The optical pattern is visually appealing, but the promise of the experience is greater than the actual one. Cruzvillegas describes the piece as a “scaffolding of ideas”, it will continue to grow over time (literally) and Empty Lot has the potential to instigate some sort of social change. Although, the installation is fatally flawed because of the lack of humanity, all we want is to get even closer –is that too much to ask?

13th October – 3rd April 2016.
For more information check out www.tate.org.uk

Get The Bug Out Insects On The Art Of Geometry

2101Hold your wallpaper rolls down, cause it will bug you if you didn’t hear it is from us first, before you make your next decor decision. What is Jennifer Angus’s motif? Patterns on walls constructed with a myriad of insects, which might be the next interior design hack, as installed in the Renwick Gallery in Washington DC on November 13th. Skull heads made out of insects? A badass move on her part that we would not mind further exploring.
The installation piece, ‘The Midnight Garden’ features 5000 insects, weevils and small beetles all gathered ecologically, using sustainable methods by Angus herself. The hands on artist, a former textile designer, wanted to create a print that was inherently repetitive in itself. The insects displayed on a hot pink wall are not altered in colour; they interweave with each other to create a cohesive print. The iridescent colours of the bugs on the walls mimic a starry night. The intertwining of this unconventional choice of pattern-making creates an immersive impact. Resulting in the insects’ existence morphing from their initial gross-view into beautiful wall ornamentation. The same insects are used each time for every exhibition, as they are delicately boxed away for their next ‘performance’.
The meticulous project intrinsically catches your eye from afar, with the purpose of highlighting the mortality of the insects that corresponds to the mortality of human kind. Stroll around this exhibition to take inspiration and take notes on your next DIY venture in your back garden.

Must Sees: October 19 – 25


1: Mademoiselle Privé
First Alexandra McQueen, then Louis Vuitton and now CHANEL. It seems there is a fashion invasion happening in London, and this is another not to miss. Mademoiselle Privé takes over the Saatchi Gallery, presenting an enchanted journey through the brand’s origins, capturing the charismatic personality and irreverent spirit of Mademoiselle Chanel and Karl Lagerfeld.

13 Oct-1 Nov, Saatchi Gallery.
For more information check out: www.saatchigallery.com/current/mademoiselle_prive

2: Affordable Art Fair
Making art accessible to everyone, Affordable Art Fair returns to Battersea. Exhibiting both new talents and household names, priced between £100 to £5,000. This fair opens up the contemporary art market for those looking to start their own collection.

22 Oct-25 Oct, Battersea Evolution, Battersea Park.
For more information check out: www.affordableartfair.com

3: Jon Rafman at Zabludowicz Collection
Ever fancied sitting in a ball pit or inside a cupboard and watching a film? Jon Rafman makes those wishes come true for his commission exhibition at Zabludowicz Collection. He has transformed the space in a playful series of installations and sculptural works to immerse the viewer into his videos. This is a show to leave your inhibitions and exhibition etiquette at the door – so just enjoy.

8 Oct-20 Dec, Zabludowicz Collection.
For more information check out: www.zabludowiczcollection.com/

4: States of Mind: Ann Veronica Janssens
‘yellowbluepink’ is the new installation by Ann Veronica Janssens at The Wellcome Collection, which explores the experience of human consciousness in a space – a space that is full of thick pink mist. The piece challenges how we perceive things, when you can’t really see anything.

20 Oct-3 Jan, The Wellcome Collection, Bloomsbury.
For more information check out: www.wellcomecollection.org

5: Parallax Art Fair

Over 200 artists from all over the world come to Parallax Art Fair to display their work. Cutting out the middle-man, you can buy directly from the artist and with prices starting from £200, this is the art fair for young collectors.

24 Oct-25 Oct, Chelsea Old Town Hall, Chelsea.
For more information check out: www.parallaxaf.co
New York
1: Mark Grotjahn: Painted Sculpture

Portraits on canvas may seem outdated for the contemporary art scene, but not when they are by Mark Grotjahn. Funky takes on facial features with expressionist characteristics, Grotjahn constructs sculptural collages, using boxes and tubes to recreate a sense of primitive art.

20 Oct- 29 Oct, Anton Kern Gallery, Chelsea.
For more information check out: www.antonkerngallery.com

2: Gianni Piacentino

A distinctive founder of Art Povera in the mid 60’s, Gianni Piacentino’s elegant weirdness will seduce you. His reductive sculpture produces an electric beauty, as he turns line drawings into three dimensional forms. Italian Futurism is upon us in this exhibition.

20 Oct-31 Oct, Michael Werner, Lenox Hill.
For more information check out: www.michaelwerner.com

3: Eduardo Paolozzi: Horizon of Expectations
A ‘graduate’ from the Pop Art movement and advocate of the Independent Group in the late 1940’s, Paolozzi’s work is oxymoronic. Behind the vibrancy of the screens prints, his work is inspired by the history of post industrial society, Brutalism and machine aesthetics.

21 Oct- 1 Nov, CLEARING, Williamsburg.
For more information check out: www.c-l-e-a-r-i-n-g.com

4: Frida Kahlo: ‘Art, Garden, Life’

In this exhibition, you are invited to get an unique insight into Frida Kahlo’s life. Tour the ornate garden she kept outside her studio, to experience the scenery that later inspired the paintings.

16 May- 1 Nov, New York Botanical Garden.
For more information check out: www.nybg.org

5: Okwui Okpakwasili: Bronx Gothic
A thematic performance of youth, terror and eroticism by the theatre muse Okwui Okpakwasili. This innovative, autobiographical performance is a compilation of poetic storytelling and dance. Okpkwasili uses her body and personal experiences to enchant you in this must-see performance.

21 Oct-24 Oct. New York Live Arts, Chelsea.
For more information check out: www.newyorklivearts.org

Louis Your Head Over at the Louis Vuitton’s Series 3 Exhibition

1801The devil now wears Louis, and we are not judging because we would too. With ‘LV’, imprinted under the iridescent lighting exalted over multiple screens stacked together, we feel like we are at the coming of the digital age. And so begins, the initiation of Louis Vuitton’s Series 3 in the Strand. Lurking futuristic music, compiled of sounds rather than a catchy tune, transcends through the front desk, as you check in Nicholas Ghesquiere’s (Louis Vuitton’s Creative Director) world.
The exhibition is not celebrating a brand’s anniversary nor honoring its excellence – that would be too self-involved. Instead, CEO Michael Burke insists it is about interacting and evoking a feeling with their customers, exposing them to the creative process. It is a base to prolong the experience of a catwalk show and share the essence of the brand. Much like a romantic gesture to us, we casually accept our date with Nicholas Ghesquiere’s Autumn/Winter 2015 collection. It takes 15 rooms, filled with screens and mirrors, artisan craftsmanship, floating trunks and a virtual marching army of models, to make this exhibition possible.

Army of Model's

Army of Model’s

Immediately, we are plunged into a room that is being eaten up by a geodesic dome fixated on its ceiling, foreboding the unveiling of what is to follow. Rooms such as The Artist’s Hand do just that, in which you role-play in a sophisticated manner by interacting with a screen that mimics the artisan’s hand, as they create the pieces. Followed by a room filled with accessories, displayed in a blindingly white space on white mannequins-sunglasses are advised to be worn, feeling as if you are not able to handle looking over the prestigious bags directly as you gush over their eclectic structure. And finally, an arrival to a glass wardrobe with the new A/W 15′ collection hanging up-confused whether to be envious over the clothes or the set-up itself.

The Artist's Hand Room

The Artist’s Hand Room

What are you left with from this whole experience? You can never have too many mirrors in just one room, a poster to take with you, and that our wardrobe was not as great as we thought before entering the exhibition. Because that over-sized white coat from this year’s runway is not hanging in our closets (yet).

The Risk-Takers and Rubbish-Makers at SUNDAY Art Fair

Before anything else, we should clarify SUNDAY Art Fair is not only on Sunday. Gallery-led, booth-free, SUNDAY returns for its 6th edition, located just a stone’s throw from the blue-chip Frieze fair in the warehouse building Ambika P3.

An easy-going and accessible temporary platform, the fair has gained reputation of exposing raw and pure talent. A showcase of young galleries and emerging artists on the cusps of something bigger; it was like a breath of fresh air in an art world full of must-be-seen crazed clones. SUNDAY has successfully set itself up as the hipper, edgier counterpart to the Frieze art supermarket.

The layout lends SUNDAY a casual democratic sense of openness, as opposed to the usual system of squeezing as many booths into one space at a time. Although, it can be tricky to distinguish when one gallery stand starts and another ends – the effect is visually stimulating and liberating.

What we came across was a lot of rubbish – actual rubbish or ‘found objects’. However, we do not mean the work’s actual effect was far from dissatisfactory. When Duchamp presented the urinal, it was a revolt against all the art rules, and these are the artists that are risking it all to reinvent the parameters of what is and what isn’t art, whilst having some fun with it. Here’s our list of those we think you should keep an eye on:

1:James Samuel Lewis at Gallerie Joseph Tang
2: Guilia Cenci at SpazioA
3: Jimmy Merris at Seventeen Gallery
4: Lea Cetera at Southard Reid
5: Aude Pariset at Barbara Seiler Gallery

Lose your minds for The Asylum at Frieze Masters

1601Check yourself into The Asylum if you feel like your week at Frieze London is getting too crazy to handle. Even the best West End productions would be envious of the theatrical setup of the Helly Nahmad Nahmad booth at Frieze Masters – no doubt, one of the most talked-about sights across both Frieze fairs.
Let the light opera music queue as the re-enactment unveils three interiors that pay homage and replicate 1940s sanatoriums and asylums. Production designer, Robin Brown has skillfully fashioned these spaces to mimic the original sources of inspiration artist Jean Dubuffet used for his works– that are also on display. An ideal counterpoint, connecting, echoing and heightening the art.

Staring upon the mental wasteland of people’s lives, we see walls scrawled with drawings and writings, a mass of intertwined textures in a plethora of colours and the abandoned belongings of imagined patients. The first room is a doctor’s office, with notes and stethoscopes, followed by a small and simple patient’s room whose writings are etched across the walls, then the final space is the largest filled with tables and chairs all covered in scribbles.
Fixated by the intricate details on the walls, you transcend into a contemporary scene of ‘One Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest’. Helly Nahmad Gallery and Robin Brown have managed to provide an insight to a world that is real, but feels foreign, where we can easily lose our minds.

The Time Is 1:54

1501If you have ever wondered what you would take with you in your ‘after-life’, then step into the Coffin at 1:54 Contemporary African Art Fair. ARTCUBE was brave enough to experience, along with our art market expert Magnus Resch, the multiple art pieces on display. From blown up coffin’s marked with the notorious label of Pepsi and that 90s kid’s Nokia phone to President Obama’s portrait pimped-out, we are glad to say that this exhibition has it all.

The third edition of this diverse exhibition, held at Somerset House, presents artists from the fifty-four countries that constitute Africa. The platform established in this show tributes the ethos of art, bringing together the multifaceted stages of contemporary production. The exhibition is set up by the RA projects, an architectural award winning studio, confidently demonstrating the works in an orchestral layout that is easy to follow.

A colorful take on Western consumerism, merged into collages, paintings and whatever other kitsch material we used to love. The fair highlights the multiplicity of cultural production, and reinvents our cultural existence. Here are some of the pieces that resonated with us from granny’s trippy doilies to Obama’s dazzling smile (literally).

1: Untitled Tete by Aboudia featuring Magnus Resch

2: Fresh and Fading Memories, Part V by El Anatsui

3: Coffins by Paa Joe and Tetteh-Ashong

4: No Man’s Land by Jems Robert Koko Bi

5: Banana Sculpture, no17 by Jebila Okwongwu

6: Ku’ngang Mask by Herve Youmbi

7: DP2 by Zak Ove

8: I Have a Drone (Obama’s Portrait) by Hassan Musa

9: The Irony of Power by Yassine Khaled

10: Passage-Oriental Series by Zahrin Kahlo

Mondays Must Sees: October 13 – 19


1: Hyundai Commission 2015: Abraham Cruzvillegas: Empty Lot

The Mexican artist, Abraham Cruzvillegas will be the inaugural artist for the Hyundai Commission to transform Tate Modern’s monumental Turbine Hall. Empty Lot is still shrouded in secrecy, yet supposedly has a very London focus – we can see for ourselves from this Tuesday 13th.

Tate Modern, 13 Oct – 20 Mar.
For more information check out www.tate.org.uk

2: Frieze London
Fair season is in full-swing; the UK’s largest and iconic contemporary art fair, Frieze London is back for its 13th Edition from 14th – 17th October in Regent’s Park, to present the crème de la crème of today’s artists and galleries from across the globe.

Regent’s Park, 14 Oct – 17 Oct.
To book tickets and find out more information check out www.friezelondon.com

3: SUNDAY Art Fair
SUNDAY Art Fair is London’s budding art fair, supporting young and emerging artists and the galleries that nurture them during the developmental stages in their careers. This year SUNDAY will take place from 14th – 18th October at Ambika P3, right around the corner from Frieze.

Ambika P3, 14 Oct – 18 Oct. Entrance is free to SUNDAY Art Fair.
To find our more information check out www.sundayartfair.com

4: 1:54 Contemporary African Art Fair
Fresh from its successful New York debut earlier this year, 1:54 Contemporary African Art Fair resumes its annual takeover at Somerset House this October, 15th – 18th, to unveil its most substantial showcase yet of contemporary African art.

Somerset House, 15 Oct – 18 Oct.
To book tickets and find out more information check out www.1-54.com/london

5: Dressed By Angels
Currently on at The Old Truman Brewery, this revealing exhibition tells the story behind the world’s greatest costume house, Angels Costumiers – presenting visitors with an irresistible mix of clothing from film, TV, theatre and radio.

The Old Truman Brewery, 1 Oct – 3 Jan.
To find out more information check out www.trumanbrewery.com
New York
1: Isa Genzken
The solo exhibition of the hugely influential German artist Isa Genzken features a plethora of eerie mannequins clothed with personal item’s of the artist, as well as collages of found materials. A pioneering contribution of sculptural eccentricity not to be missed.

David Zwirner Gallery, 16 Sept – 31 Oct.
To find more information check out www.davidzwirner.com/exhibition/isa-genzken-3

2: New York City Ballet
The notable dance company of New York City Ballet will entice you in their captivating performances of Peter Martin’s Swan Lake, Jerome Robbins N.Y. Export: Opus Jazz, two Balanchine Programs, all under the guidance of talented choreographers orchestrated to epitomise a night of performing arts.

David H. Koch Theatre (at Lincoln Center), 13 Oct – 18 Oct.
To find out more information check out: www.nycballet.com

3: Open House New York
The annual tour, New York Open House, allows exclusive access to nose around over 150 of the coolest architectural masterpieces, historical buildings and private houses New York has to offer. An exploration of the grandeur behind-the-scenes of some the most exciting hidden gems within the Big Apple.

Various Venues, 17 Oct – 18 Oct.
To find out more information check out: www.ohny.org

4: Sara Sze
The anticipated show of Sara Sze is now on display at the Tanya Bonakdar Gallery, in the artists first major showing in the U.S. The body of work encompasses an array of sculptural work and installations, engaging the viewer’s senses through her use of sound, light, and paint.

Tanaya Bonakdar Gallery 10 Sept – 17 Oct.
For more information check out: www.tanyabonakdargallery.com/exhibitions/sarah-sze_3

5: Back To The Future Live
Three decades and counting, Back to the Future is here to transport us, once again, to Marty McFly’s past, where he saves himself from being born. Radio City Hall provides this trip to a nostalgic time-travelling with the HD screening of the classic movie, alongside an exclusive performance by the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra.

Radio City Music Hall 15 Oct- 16 Oct
For more information check out: filconcertslive.com

The Curious Case of Frieze London

Be prepared to reconsider whatever you once thought impossible, when hell “Friezes” over. Yesterday, Frieze London opened its doors for an exclusive list of art lovers. We were there, and have to say things are getting a little bit bizarre and rather absurd. Floating skulls, secret doors, an enormous inflatable cat, and an intimate portrait session as you’ve never seen yourself before by Ken Kagami – are all just the tip of the iceberg. When we came across the performance piece Xifópagas Capilares by Tunga, which is essentially the twins from ‘The Shining’ meets Samara from ‘The Ring’, we frankly wanted to run in the opposite direction and never look back.

Here are some of our most ‘WTF’ finds. So, if you are going to Frieze, open up your imagination to experience all the things that are peculiar, intriguing and shocking.

1: Xifópagas Capilares by Tunga

2: Dick Eye by Paul McCarthy

3: Felix The Cat by Mark Leckey

4: Sculpture #1 by Darren Bader

5: Frieze Project Commission by Jeremy Herbert

6: Layered Side-Swept Ombre by Nina Beier

7: Portrait Session by Ken Kagami

8: Still Life in the Doldrums by Anri Sala

9: Wall Painting With Aphids by Carsten Holler

10: The Collector at Rest by Mark Dion

Ryan Gander at Lisson Gallery

Ryan Gander is giving new meaning to the saying, ‘everything but the kitchen sink’, because the sink is actually to be found at his new solo show Fieldwork at Lisson gallery.
Things only get more and more absurd as a baseball bat covered with nails, a dead pigeon and a decapitated teddy-bear passes our gaze. This collection of bizarre and crafted objects travel along a conveyer belt, only made visible through a small window. He has created a memory game of strange associations and a prism of connections to mull over for the rest of the exhibition.
Gander is exploring the battle between concealment vs. reveal, by tempting, tantalising and giving the viewer just enough to satisfy their curiosity. Think of that niggling frustration of desiring to see something in full… but you are left longing. He stimulates this sensation more subtly with a mirror draped by a marble cloth, where we can just glimpse our reflection, and an internally lit tent in a remote courtyard, as we are left wondering what’s going on inside. For the final piece Never Enough, Gander has relocated a shingle beach to take over the entire downstairs space, but alas, we can only peer down at the pebbles.
Sealed off worlds and suggestive sculptures, Gander is such a tease. Through an uncomplicated idea, explored in a diverse array of engaging works, we see his prowess as a complex conceptual artist. Gander’s practise is rooted in the potential of the ‘what-ifs’, and plants within the viewer that same seed of speculation of endless possibilities.

Ryan Gander, Fieldwork, at Lisson gallery is on until 31st October.
For more information check out www.lissongallery.com/exhibitions/ryan-gander

Must Sees: October 5 -11

What is happening this week in London: Damien Hirst is putting his wealth to good use, opening his new space Newport Street Gallery, Eddie Peake brings us sheer-suited roller-skaters and never-seen-before portraits by Goya come to the National Gallery.

1. John Hoyland at Newport Street Gallery
“I’ve always loved art and art deserves to be shown in great spaces, so I’ve always dreamed of having my own gallery where I can exhibit work by the artists I love”. Damien Hirst is proving he not just a money-making-contemporary-art-juggernaut and is giving back. His long awaited, Newport Street Gallery, opens with a solo show of paintings by John Hoyland. We did expect a tribute to his fellow YBA’s but Hoyland’s paintings are bold, abstract and geometric enough to stand against such a pristine space. Anyway, we want to see how Hirst has spent his £25 million.

Open to the public from Thursday 8th at Newport Street Gallery.
For more information check out www.newportstreetgallery.com

2. Eddie Peake at the Barbican Curve
Eddie Peake is one of London’s biggest and brightest contemporary artists, and if you have seen his art, chances are you have seen him nude. Extraordinarily, he is not naked this time. This week he takes on the Barbican Curve Gallery with an extravaganza of sculpture, installation and roller-skaters in transparent onesies. If that does not tickle your fancy, what will?

Open to the public from Friday 9th at the Barbican Curve.
For more information check out www.barbican.org.uk

3. Alex Gardner at The Dot Project
What is your reason for visiting? The Dot Project presents a solo exhibition of work by Los Angeles based artist, Alex Gardner. Stripping back and simplifying the human form, bodies are intertwined in dance-like poses – his paintings tell a narrative that is just as ambiguous as the figures. This obscurity is the key to his work, and makes this exhibition one not-to-miss.

Open to the public from Tuesday 6th at The Dot Project.
For more information check out www.thedotproject.com/alex_gardner

4. Goya: The Portraits at the National Gallery
Providing penetrating insight into the public and private aspects of his life, ‘Goya: The Portraits’ traces the artist’s development, from his first commissions to more intimate later works painted during his ‘self-imposed exile’. Goya is one of Spain’s most celebrated painters, yet until now, the National Gallery shows his prowess as a portraitist.

Open to the public from Wednesday 7th at the National Gallery.
For more information check out www.nationalgallery.org.uk/goya-portraits

5. Einat Amir at Triad Gallery
We have all got a little too close to a stranger on the tube (for our liking), but now experience that in Einat Amir’s participatory performances at the Triad Gallery. Amir will select pairs to enter a booth and they must talk to each other as guided by a pre-recorded conversational structure. He tests our comfort zones, our ability to converse and the constructs of social relationships in a time where we are much more comfortable talking through our screens.

Open to the public from Friday 9th at Triad Gallery.
For more information check out www.thetriad.org.uk

Jennifer Rubell at Stephen Friedman Gallery

0101Think of Tate Sensorium or Carsten Holler, there is presently a trend for hyper-interactive sensory art.

Accordingly, Jennifer Rubell asks a lot of her viewer at her current solo show Not Alone at Stephen Friedman Gallery. You hold a baby, eat an egg, and undress in front of a film (where the artist is also in the buff, riding a horse, of course).

Glass involves an invigilator handing over a slumbering crystal child and, like most millennials, we had to set aside the phone to switch one precious belonging for another. Cradling this gift, our hands get worryingly sweaty and as we stare through this very much breakable babe, we chant a silent prayer not to drop it.
All that pent-up tension is soon realised. For Them, we crack open the shell of a hard-boiled egg, season it with super kitschy salt and pepper shakers, before finally eating it. The princess and the frog, the hunter and the rabbit, the drunkard and the bottle; it dawned on us each pairing is a couple – one cannot be without the other.

The princess and the frog, the hunter and the rabbit, the drunkard and the bottle;

Rubell really requests our intimacy. Posing invites the viewer to disrobe whilst watching a video of the artist herself nude astride a horse. Admittedly, we did not bare all, but the experience itself is truly memorable – as we emphasise with Rubell whilst pushing the limits of our own comfort zones.
Through this exhibition, Rubell is exploring the themes of parenthood, co-dependency, companionship and origin – which is far more pertinent since the recent birth of her second child. She throws us into situations that make us feel at once uncomfortable, vulnerable and yet liberated. We are being mothered, and weirdly begin to feel motherly.

Not Alone triumphs at engaging the viewer with new and remarkable experiences. Certainly, we will not forget hyperventilating over smashing a glass child anytime soon.

Jennifer Rubell, Not Alone, is on at Stephen Freidman Gallery only for one more day!
So head over to the space ASAP.
For more information, check out www.stephenfriedman.com

EY : The World Goes Pop

2901Pop art: we have seen it all before and most probably studied Marilyn Monroe’s face (courtesy of Warhol) in school. However, this is not quite the pop art you know – it’s the stuff the history books left out. The EY Exhibition: The World Goes Pop, at Tate Modern, really does pack a punch.
Blindingly bright colours, hard-hitting opinions and refreshingly revolutionary; what this exhibition does best is prove that pop art is not just synonymous to Andy Warhol or Roy Lichtenstein. In fact, the phenomenon was much more universal spreading from Peru to Japan and not just limited to the male gender.
Female artists from the 1960s and 70s were often marginalised and shrugged off by their sexual counterparts – so let the ladies take their well-deserved spotlight. The show features car hoods strikingly embellished with female anatomy by Judy Chicago, washing machines spliced with bare bums in Martha Rosler’s collages and woman-shaped television cabinets from Nicola L. This piece really hit home, such a frank reduction of women into just a passive, domestic, source of entertainment – the ultimate objectification of women.
The feminist angle is not the only political agenda at play – much of the work addresses conflicts like the Vietnam War or the Brazilian military dictatorship, but in the characteristic colours. Colin Self’s Leopardskin Nuclear Bomb No. 2 is a phallic bomb-like sculpture in tacky leopard print; at once perfectly commenting on the Cold War and consumer society. Everywhere you look; the work is jumping out and confronting social, cultural and political wrongdoings.
The triumph of Pop Art is its relatability. We live in a society proliferated with media, so by mimicking the adverts and brands we all recognise has a clear subversive message. From the begrudging teenager to camera-happy tourist, The EY Exhibition: The World Goes Pop reaches us all and finally makes Pop Art exciting again.

The EY Exhibition: The World Goes Pop is on at Tate Modern until 24th January 2016.
For more information check out www.tate.org.uk

Must Sees: September 28 – October 4

What to expect from the days ahead: staged sets, alter egos, flyposting, a little bit of the ordinary and some rubbish – but nothing is really ordinary or rubbish for that matter.

1: Juno Calypso at 71a Gallery
Where is love found best? At honeymoon hotels of course. Under the guise of her persona named Joyce, Juno Calypso explores rituals of seduction and beauty. Why, on some days, we look in the mirror and just see a gargoyle. Calypso is a young artist to keep an eye on, taking the world one heart-shaped bath at a time, so head over to 71a Gallery to catch this 4-day exhibition.

Open to the public from Friday 2nd at 71a Gallery. Private View 1st October.
For more information check out www.71alondon.com

2: Flyposting at Cass Bank Gallery
Poster and billboard interventions (appropriately named flyposting) by artist Mustafa Hulusi, are removed from its guerrilla context and placed into the ‘white cube’. We are relieved to hear the confinements of the gallery are not confining the work. The images will stay true to their nature, being flyposted to the walls. We wonder whether the most accurate description is contained rebellion.

Open to the public from Tuesday 29th at Cass Bank Gallery.
For more information check out www.thecass.com

3: Ilona Sagar, Haptic Skins of a Glass Eye, at Tenderpixel
The links between technologies and the body is the basis for Sagar’s research – how does one affect the other? Her new film, Haptic Skins of a Glass Eye, unpicks the messy physiological residue that advancements in technology and the virtual realm have left us in. We are all but screens with hands.

Open to the public from Saturday 3rd at Tenderpixel. Private view 2nd October.
For more information check out www.tenderpixel.com

4: Cydney Cossette Holm, These Small Things, at Stour Space
These Small Things zooms in on the littler details that make up the bigger picture. Holm pays attention to the [in]significant and mundane to digest her surroundings, the world we live in. Through her work do we realise the eternity of small things in our vastness, and how little we each are in the grand scheme of things.

Open to the public from Friday 2nd at Stour Space. Private View 1st October.
For more information check out www.stourspace.co.uk

5: Votives at Space In Between
The best things are always found in charity shops and skips – Votives presents a series of sculptures installed alongside three large-scale photographs by the ARKA group. Taking inspiration from the accidental arrangements on the streets, the sculptures are bright, instantaneous and a whole lot of fun.

Open to the public from Friday 2nd at Space In Between. Private View 1st October.
Votives is a part of Art Licks Weekend – running between 2nd Oct to 4th Oct across London.
For more information check out www.artlicksweekend.com

Art Wolfe | Rotella Gallery

2504Admittedly, the first thing we thought of seeing the Human Canvas series by Art Wolfe, at the Rotella Gallery, was the music video for ‘Somebody I Used To Know’ by Gotye – but once we got past that, we began to appreciate the distinct graphics and purity of the images.
The Human Canvas series does seem out-of-place considering Wolfe’s background as a wildlife, landscape and culture photographer. However, take note of the tribal-like patterns and you can instantly connect Wolfe’s previous experience with this highly stylised project.
There is a strong aesthetic to the images. Wolfe’s palette is strictly crisp white and blackest black. He uses defined dots and lines, which are applied to the human literally as if it is canvas. The marks and the monochrome gives the photographs a touch of minimalism; we are being immersed in what we see, not what it represents.
Theatrics over erotic – in remote cultures, nudity is the norm and in the Human Canvas, the fact the models are nude is almost irrelevant. We are not focusing on the body as sexual matter; instead, bodies are compositional tools, like building blocks or brush strokes on a painting. In this way, the images possess a physicality and rawness. We see the human form for all its beauty, its curves and contours, despite the camouflage.
Clay Study was our particular favourite because of its inviting texture – we just wanted to pick at the cracking clay peeling from the skin. Nonetheless, there is a kind of flatness, as the body merges and obscures into the patterned background; painting and human become one. Then sometimes, we cannot even notice the human at all.
Check out this link to watch how the process of creating the Human Canvas series and Art Wolfe taking about the project.




2301Ai Weiwei is arguably the most famous living artist, but for what reason? He is commonly known for his relentless insurgence against the Chinese government (and that time our own government did not let him into the country). Now, he has came and conquered the Royal Academy of Arts with a vast array of sculptures and installations that left us in awe. This is an exhibition of ginormous proportions, matched only by its powerful emotions and political bite.
Ripples of rusted steel rods form a rising landscape on the floor; Straight is a poignant and solemn commemoration to the 5,000 children who died in the 2008 Sichuan earthquake – each rod, collected from the ruins of the schools, is devotedly straightened to monumentalise the tragedy. A hush falls over the gallery, as we all share an intense moment of empathy.

Ai is at his best on a grand scale – but we mean stupendously big. In the rotunda, Bicycle Chandelier suspends above you, an unbelievable blend between a crystal chandelier and bicycle that proves Ai can do more than activist mode. He is master of repetition, engineering and material – we had to take a step back out of sheer wonder.
Brave, honest, and defiant. In essence, that is what Ai Weiwei stands for and we see that purest in S.A.C.R.E.D, a portrayal of his time in captivity. Six cells stand, each with a grille to peer through, where inside you see half-sized models of Ai and two guards, scrutinising his every move. You become witness and spy to scenes of intimate surveillance and an undying struggle for freedom.
There are instances where the trope is too obvious or overused for it to be impactful, like CCTV cameras in marble or a 2,000-year-old bowl with Coca-Cola crassly scrawled across it – so what? However, you leave the show with a sense you have truly just experienced something, and there are not many exhibitions you can say that about.

Ai WeiWei is currently on at the Royal Academy of Arts
between 19 September to 13 December 2015.
To book your tickets and more information check out

Must Sees: September 21 – 27

After last week’s extravaganza of blockbuster openings (need we mention Ai Weiwei), this week may seem a little slower. However, do not fret – there is plenty still to see as London’s autumn season of art is just kicking off.

1: London Design Festival, various locations around London
We are possibly cheating because LDF started Saturday but regardless, this is the week to catch a whole host of exciting events and exhibitions by world-renowned designers, all across the city. There is an upside-down telegraph pylon by Alex Chinnick, a Tower of Babel made from tiny bone china shops, and so much more to see. We suggest downloading the guide and planning your journey to discover as much as possible.

Running between the 19th to the 27th at various locations around London. For more information on programmed events check out www.londondesignfestival.com

2. Tetsumi Kudo at Hauser and Wirth London
Grotesque renderings of the body and objects that look like sci-fi props; Kudo’s sculptures explore the themes of pollution and decay – on nature and on humanity, the two seeming to go hand-in-hand. We expect to encounter a post-apocalyptic world where nature has lost the battle to the machine – a hint of a future yet to come.

Open to the public from Tuesday 22nd at Hauser and Wirth London. Private View 21st September.
For more information check out www.hauserwirth.com

3. Prem Sahib at ICA
For his first institutional solo show in London, Prem Sahib will present new and recent work at the ICA. Sahib’s multi-disciplinary practise looks at the relationship between public and private spaces – community and intimacy – with club culture as a source of inspiration. Hosting the exhibition party, contemporary peers Eddie Peake and George Henry Longly will be DJs, to launch Sahib’s show into the early morning.

Open to the public from Thursday 24th at ICA. Exhibition Party 23rd September 7pm – 1am.
For more information check out www.ica.org.uk

4. Robert Irwin / Cerith Wyn Evans at White Cube Bermondsey
White Cube Bermondsey is opening its doors Tuesday night to present two separate shows by two of its represented artists, Robert Irwin and Cerith Wyn Evans. We think this may be a match made in heaven, as both artists create light installations to a minimal effect and focus on the notion of perception. We anticipate from both exhibitions super sleek design and out-of-body experiences.

Open to the public from Wednesday 23rd at White Cube Bermondsey. Private View 22nd September.
For more information check out www.whitecube.com

5. Kemang Wa Lehulere at Gasworks
The renovated Gasworks will be reopening with a solo exhibition by South African artist, Kemang Wa Lehulere. Unravelling the relationships between personal and collective histories, amnesia and the archive, Wa Lehulere’s practice explores how South Africa’s past continues to haunt its present (Also, we are very excited to see the Gasworks in all its new glory).

Open to the public from Friday 24th at Gasworks. Private View 23rd September. For more information check out www.gasworks.org.uk

clouds + mountains + waterfalls

1801The sun may be leaving us in London, but Ugo Rondinone is bringing back the brightness with his current show clouds + mountains + waterfalls at Sadie Coles HQ.

Rondinone has long been obsessed with geological forms, and this exhibition is no different – there are three new bodies of work on display, which you guessed it, are based on clouds, mountains and waterfalls. But forget all the romantic connotations, what Rondinone has created is a surreal territory that is simply spectacular.
The mountains are towers of stones painted in vivid colours, precariously poised one on top of each other – defying and relying on gravity. The fear was real that if a single tremor shook, the towers would come tumbling down. Then, in the corner of the eye, the towers began to take on human form and you suddenly become very aware of their presence.
The cloud paintings are large canvases painted in pale and muted blues with cartoonish contours. They depict an illusionary, immeasurable and infinite space. Then, much like real clouds, Rondidone’s clouds are phantasmal images – where in the canvases you can see whatever form you want.
The third and final series in the exhibition consists of waterfall sculptures – thin, freestanding lines made in clay and cast in raw aluminium, like spurts of water immortalised in time. Get up close and you can still see the fingerprints.

Rondidone’s paintings and sculptures may be referring strictly to the natural world, but the effect is much more subjective. Stepping into the space, it felt as if we were entering a kid’s drawing and that is in no way a criticism. We were filled with a childlike wonder and our imagination began to run wild – although do not actually run, just in case.
Ugo Rondinone, clouds + mountains + waterfalls is currently on at Sadie Coles HQ between 11 September to 24 October 2015.
To find out more information check out www.sadiecoles.com/artists/rondinone#ur-clouds-mountains-waterfalls-sept-15

ARTCUBE loves Asymptote by Evelyn Bencicova

1702Contorted limbs and oblique lines, Asymptote, an ongoing photographic series by Evelyn Bencicova in collaboration with Adam Csoka Keller, is hauntingly eerie and beautifully alien. And we are utterly absorbed by her nightmarish scenes, even if we are a little disturbed.
Taking inspiration from a history of communism in the now democratic Slovakia, these extraterritorial worlds reflect the residue of such a regime on Slovakian art, architecture and its people. In this project, we see pale bodies employed as compositional forms and masked faces in repetitive poses – it is quite literally attack of the clones. This fusion of humanity with geometrics just speaks sorrow, and yet we do not feel hopeless.
Each man, woman and child is stripped of their individuality, instantly merging into one and vanishing into nothing. Such bleakness, such despair is only made worse by the clinical backdrops. There are ordered hallways and sterilised swimming pools – you can smell the chlorine. Then, here dwelling are the miserable figures, as if waiting for their victims to arrive.
Asymptote is full of contradictions: at once tragic, we are inspired and, despite the austerity, the images are filled with emotion. Though we want to run, the creepy allure and beguiling beauty of Bencicova’s photographs just keeps on pulling us back and back.

ARTCUBE goes to START Art Fair

Only in its second edition, START Art Fair has already made a big name for itself, as a platform that brings together only the best of emerging artists and galleries from around the world. Setting itself apart from the mega-fairs like Frieze and Basel, our experience of START was very one of discovery – we left feeling refreshed and pumped up.

Here, are ARTCUBE’s highlights of the top five artists you need to keep an eye on:

Based in London, White’s work is like IKEA gone wrong. Lumpy lamps and architectural paintings come together to construct spaces of modernist intention, which are also delightfully vivacious. This is the kind of interior design we want to step into.

Represented by l’étrangère Gallery, London.

Soft and sharp: subtle hues meet straight lines. Zsófi Barabás paintings are geometrically intricate and femininely delicate. At ARTCUBE we do love our cubes and we were excited to see the cube invasion in landscape form. Her work is open enough to allow for individual interpretations – and we did spend a long time staring wistfully.

Represented by Alludo Room Gallery, Austria.

It was surprising at an art fair marketing itself on the emerging art scene that video work was in such short supply. So, when we came across the Arcadia Missa booth, we were drawn like a moth to a flame to the work by Hannah Quinlan Anderson & Rosie Hastings. Do not be deceived by the pinks, their work has a critical bite relevant to the internet age, and it was refreshing to see work genuinely current.

Represented by Arcadia Missa, London.

At Chim-pom’s exhibition, the Japanese art collective, we befriended ‘Super Rat’, a taxidermy rat painted up like Pikachu, and we created an origami crane. Although, behind all the fun, Chim-Pom are referencing the somber history of Japan, of nuclear bombs and chemical contamination. For work that is not so subtle, we enjoyed this subtle balance between light and dark.


5. Suh Jeong-Min
Neither painting nor sculpture, Jeong-Min’s tactile surfaces appear like swaying seaweed under the sea. He uses a process of densely rolling paper scraps to build up layers of mass and detail; such a simple method employed rigorously to produce complexity. His work grabbed our attention and kept us wondering how patient a person can be (we’re not).

Represented by Kálmán Makláry Fine Arts Gallery, Hungary.

Must Sees: September 15 – 22

Another week means another list of openings in London. Although, this one is particularly good because perhaps the most anticipated exhibition of the art calendar is finally here: we are of course talking about Ai Weiwei’s solo exhibition at the Royal Academy.

1. Ai WeiWei at the Royal Academy of Arts
The legend that is Ai Weiwei was last seen on British soil when he covered the Turbine Hall in Tate Modern with sunflower seeds. Now, he has returned with full-force to take over the four gallery spaces at the Royal Academy to house a major collection of some new and some old works. What to expect – big, brave, and provocative. There will be nothing tame about this show.

Open to the public from Saturday 19th September at the Royal Academy of Arts.
Book your tickets now from www.royalacademy.org.uk

2. Jerwood Drawing Prize at the Jerwood Visual Arts Centre
The Jerwood Drawing Prize is the most renowned of open submissions for drawing in the UK, and shows only the most talented and contemporary of drawing practitioners. A total of 60 works by 58 artists have been selected by this year’s panel to showcase the diversity and breadth of drawing practises in the UK. As always, this will be a popular and well-executed exhibition not to miss.

Open to the public from Wednesday 16th September at Jerwood Visual Arts Centre.
Private View RSVP 15th September.
For more information check out www.jerwoodvisualarts.org

3. The EY Exhibition: The World Goes Pop at Tate Modern
(Perhaps in competition with Ai Weiwei) The Tate Modern is presenting all that goes pop, bang and kapoow – a visual punch to the eyeballs. This exhibition will reveal how the pop-art phenomenon spread all across the globe and how different cultures/countries responded to the movement. We anticipate a whole lot of colour and revolt – a language that is relatable today more than ever.

Open to the public from Thursday 17th September at Tate Modern.
Book your tickets now from www.tate.org.uk

4. Jumana Manna at Chisenhale Gallery
Merging politics and music, Jumana Manna is exploring the cultural traditions of Jerusalem in her first solo show in the UK. Chisenhale always has a knack for picking and commissioning the freshest of contemporary artists, and so we expect nothing less from Manna – this will surely be a conceptual and current treat.

Open to the public Friday 18th September at Chisenhale Gallery.
Private View RSVP 17th September.
For more information check out www.chisenhale.org.uk

5. MERGE Festival, various locations along Southwark Street
Celebrating the rich culture and heritage of London’s Bankside, Merge Festival breathes life back into Southwark Street. With a variety of events, art installations, performances, this festival will be inspiring and full of unexpected happenings for those that are seeking something to do over the weekend.

Starting this Friday 18th September at various locations along Southwark Street, London Bankside.
For more information on programmed events check out www.mergefestival.co.uk

ARTCUBE goes to Tate Sensorium

1101First, you just looked at art, then we needed audio guides and now, Sensorium at Tate Britain takes this one step further for those who have ever wondered what it would be like to taste a Francis Bacon painting (FYI you will neither be eating any artwork nor bacon).

‘Flying Object’, the creative geniuses behind Sensorium and winner of the Tate IK Prize, have united technology and art to immerse visitors in a multi-sensory experience. You smell, hear, touch and even taste whilst viewing the four paintings on display, to comprehend the work in an entirely new way.
Led around in intimate packs through blackened rooms, it is easy to feel a little awkward when smelling walls. However, the experience of encountering Richard Hamilton’s Interior II with the accompanying aromas is profound; you can imagine stepping into the painting. For John Latham’s Full Stop the effect of booming noises bursting through your headphones is jolting, and the haptic impression of pressure is curious. Then, to complement David Bomberg’s In the Hold there are barely detectable scents and clanking sounds that attempt to transport you to a ship’s hold – but somehow falls short. Finally, as you stare at Francis Bacon’s Figure in the Landscape, you get chocolate. We did expect something porkier, but the chocolate provides a definite hint of smokiness.
The power of Sensorium lies in its revolutionary and exciting concept. Although, we did anticipate more sensations, all your senses are challenged to engage with art, which normally you could disregard. So, for Sensorium, slow down and really look – but not just look.

Sensorium is on at Tate Britain between 26 August to 4 October 2015.
For more information check out: www.tate.org.uk

ARTCUBE goes to Dismaland

0401Banksy, the famous yet still unknown street artist, is definitely not celebrated for his meekness. Last weekend ARTCUBE paid a trip to his most recent feat Dismaland, the spoof theme park nestled in the dreary seaside town of Weston-super-Mare, UK. A place where nothing is super, until now.

The exhibition houses more than 50 artists, including big-names like Damien Hirst and those less-familiar such as Jimmy Cauty. Drawing in a wide range of visitors, Dismaland presents a diverse and electric array of artwork that are alluring for all the wrong reasons.
Enter into a creepy atmosphere, where the murky skyline perfectly suits the scene as a dilapidated Disney Castle rises before your eyes. Surrounded by a lake for the sour and dire, Ariel emerges from the water in glitchy-glory. Inside the castle, Cinderalla has sadly not made it to the ball, instead her pumpkin carriage has been in a car crash and the paparazzi flock to the scene to snap shots of the dead princess. Does this sound familiar?
Cinderella’s castle is just the icing on the cake. There is a dodgem of death or death on a dodgem and ‘Free Willy’ is leaping from a toilet basin. All may seem a little absurd, but every piece is charged with a critical stance against… well perhaps everything that is wrong with modern-day society, and everything is worthy of a selfie.
We left with a sense of unease. Dismaland is successful because of its’ fierce political agenda, and yet despite all the darkness, the subversion, the satire, we enjoyed the journey and our overall experience of Banksy’s ‘bemusement park’ was ironically far from dismal.

‘Dismaland’ is open to the public until September 27 from 11am to 11pm.
Visit www.dismaland.co.uk for tickets