Art Of The Day Weekly
#22 - from 9 November 2006 to 15 November 2006
IN THE AIR
Seen from the sky
For the public at large, Yann Arthus-Bertrand is synonymous of aerial photography, and they seem to believe he almost has the monopoly of the profession. His Earth seen from the sky has become a real business, developed through diaries, posters, post cards, exhibitions on the gates of the Luxembourg gardens in Paris, etc. Without minimizing his talent, there is no harm in remembering, now and then, that pioneers did a wonderful job before him. Two of them are put in the limelight in concomitant exhibitions. In London, the British Museum presents Georg Gerster. Born in 1928, throughout his 40-year long career he flew over archeologic sites in 111 countries. In Paris, a highly colorful character - with his black and white photographs of the Halles or the Seine - has come back to life at the Carnavalet museum: Roger Henrard (1900-1975). The 65 snapshots presented are only a sample of the 1750 photos he bequethed to the Carnavalet. He was an exceptional pilot and was given by the prefecture the unique authorization to fly over the capital, at the controls of his single-engined aircraft, to get as close as possible to the monuments. One well imagines what answer would be given today to an applicatn with the same request…
Advertising and the darkroom
PARIS – For almost a century now photography has been used in advertising, as we can see 1928-30 as the turning date in which ads went from the drawn image to the snapshot. Rather than wait some twenty years for the anniversary, the museum of Advertising (musée de la Publicité) is summing up the last three quarters of a century that have been full of changes and evolution. While the names of Man Ray and Jean-Paul Goude are practically household items, we are pleased to have light shed on great interpreters of the genre. The exhibition gives a large space to the Paris school of the 1930s when Laure Albin-Guillot, François Kollar, Emmanuel Sougez or Maurice Tabard, all very close to the technique (some of them were directors of laboratories) took close ups, intelligently lit, of radiators, electric bulbs or furniture. The years from 1960 to 1980, with the arrival of color and compositions that like to use the second degree, by Guy Bourdin or Sarah Moon, represent another golden age. The recent developments, allowed by digital photography, wrap up this exhibition.
Would you care for another Martini?
MILAN – He is not as well known as the famous cocktail, and his exhibitions are so far and in between that one should not miss the one offerd by the capital of the Lombard region for anything! Arturo Martini, born in Treviso in 1889, died in 1947, was a fellow artist of the Futurists and the metaphysicians of Chirico's group. But he was obsessed by medieval sculpture as well as that of the Renaissance, so he followed a personal path that allowed him to reach an increasingly higher degree of abstraction while remaining figurative. Some one hundred works are exhibited at the Palazzo della Permanente and the Fondazione Stelline, and demonstrate his capacity to use all materials: plaster, bronze, marble from Carrara or stone from Finale Ligure, resistatn earth or terracotta… Hercules, Tchékhov, characters like those from the famous series «Thirst» are presented. Martini was a great «public» sculptor so one must take advantage of a trip to Milano to go discover his sculptures and low-reliefs in the city, from the hospital Niguarda to the Palace of Justice or the Palace Arengario, in front of the Duomo.
One Caravaggio, or the other
ROME – The exhibition shown in the church of Santa Maria del Popolo is really sall, there are only two paintings! But it is no less fascinating for it refers to a mysterious episode in Caravaggio's life (that had its share of just that). Two versions of his Conversion of saint Paul are put face to face. The first is on a canvas and has decorated a chapel in the church since 1605. The second is on a block of cypress, belongs to the Odescalchi family and has just been restored: in fact this is the one that Tiberio Cerasi, the tresaurer of the apostolic Chamber, had commissioned from the beginning. So why did Caravaggio substitute them? The mystery gets deeper when we note a second scene on the walls of the church: the Martyrdom of saint Peter. This is the «canvas» version. There also existed an original «cypress» but which disappeared a long time ago. May all treasure hunters take note…
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TORINO – The setting is always as fascinating: the former Fiat plant in Lingotto, remodeled by Renzo Piano with the mythical test track on the roof… But a visit to Artissima, the dynamic art fair that is celebrating its 13th edition, does not limit itself to architectural emotions. It represents a good panorama of the Italian market in its most contemporary segment. Next to the solid local values (l’Arte Povera was born here) such as Persano or Christian Stein, a good delegation of foreign exhibitors is also present (in total, 150 galleries). Following the example of other international fairs, Artissima has created a section for New Entries and another for projects of large dimensions, the Constellations. Torino takes advantage of this opportunity to multiply its initiatives: for the Saturday Night Art Fever, museums and galleries will be open late while the event Luci d’Artista (that will go on until December) distills light installations throughout the city.
Plates against hunger
This is the third year in which Action contre la faim organises an auction of works of art by contemporary artists. The sums collected will allow the NGO to carry out emergency programmes throughout the world. These are porcelain dishes decorated this year some one hundred artists such as Pierre and Gilles, Robert Combas, Aki Kuroda, Didier Pozza, Alain Declercq, Claude Viallat, Orlan... The plates are presented on the website of Action contre la Faim whre one can start bidding as of now. They will be awarded on 12 December, during a special evening at the Hôtel Dassault organized in partnership with Artcurial.
Created in 1979, Action contre la Faim today is one of the most important humanitarian organizations that fights against hunger in the world, and created in an international network with five headquarters (London, Madrid, New York, Montreal and Paris). Action contre la Faim – France intervenes in 18 countries affected by serious food crisises. In 2005, Action contre la Faim - France helped nearly 1.9 million persons.
Kiefer-Celan, the nightmare of the camps
For decades, Anselm Kiefer (born in 1945) has been obsessed by the memory of Nazism and its horrors, that he has tried to exorcise through a very material painting, allying sand, dry flowers, straw, sunflower grains, ashes, burnt sticks or bronze books… A native from Donaueschingen, a region marked by the Germanic myth of the Nibelungen, Kiefer is constatnly trying to understand the unspeakable. Paul Celan the poet lost all of his family in the camps and committed suicide by jumping off the Mirabeau bridge in Paris. His poems served him for a long time as a vital lead in this search. The book develops a close analysis of this relationship between the written word and artistic creation, in a language that is sometimes hard. The work was awarded the Artcurial prize of the contemporary art book.
BOURGES – From 9 to 19 November, the 3rd bienial of contemporary art contemporain of Bourges takes over various locations in the city, from the Jacques-Cœur house to the Estève museum, from the museum of Natural History to the Transpalette.
LISBON – The Arte Lisboa 2006 fair brings together 66 contemporary art galleries from 9 to 13 November. This encounter allows to gauge the Portuguese market.
NEW YORK – An abundance of Warhols during the sale of modern and contemporary art at Christie’s on 15 November: the portrait of Marilyn (1962) is estimated at 12 million $, Mao's (1972) at 8 million.
NEW YORK – The Art20 fair, created 5 years ago, will be held from 10 to 13 November at the Park Avenue Armory. It specializes in the XXth century, from the avant-gardes to our day and brigns together some sixty galleries.
NEW YORK – Artist Olafur Eliasson, whose sun-shaped installation at the Tate Modern had created a sensation, has done a luminous sculpture, that will be shown in all the Louis Vuitton shops. It is presented in the shop on Vth Avenue on 9 November.
PARIS – Four fairs – those of French Artists, the Independants, of Drawing and Water Paints as well as Comparisons - have federated to offer the "Art in capital" event, held in the nave of the Grand Palais from 9 to 19 November.
PARIS - The cultural patrimony fair is open to the public from 9 to 12 November at the Carrousel du Louvre. It brings together 250 exhibitors, professionals in the catering business, in decoration and in historical monuments.
PARIS – The Valérie Cueto gallery is closing in Paris and re-opening in New York on 24 February (during the Armory Show) as the Cueto Project.
TORONTO – For its 7th edition, from 9 to 13 November, the Toronto International Art Fair will host 85 galleries of contemporary art, from North America in paticular.
This week do not miss
VEVEY - A contemporary of Eugène Boudin, François Boçion (1828-90) preferred like him to paint outside, thus catching all subtleties of the atmosphere of a lake. The Jenich museum invites us, through some 160 works, to rediscover this painter based in Lausanne, and a great friend of Courbet's (upon his death, he was asked to evaluate his workshop).