Home > ArtoftheDay Weekly > #23 - from 16 November 2006 to 22 November 2006

Art Of The Day Weekly

#23 - from 16 November 2006 to 22 November 2006


Sky's the limit

Where will we stop? The sky is the limit as we like to say. It is what we can feel when we see the results of the impressionnist and modern auctions held in New York, from 7 to 9 November. Of course, the sales at Christie’s had the greatest impact on the public: in one single evening, 8 November, almost 500 million dollars for paintings that many enlightened amateurs would have refused a century ago. In particular, nearly 200 million dollars for four paintings by Klimt, who over the last six months has become Picasso's alter ego in the highest spheres of marketable art. The evening before that, Sotheby’s had only sold for 238 million dollars, and therefore no one paid any attention. That is because at the rhythm things are going, a Cézanne at 37 million dollars (Nature morte aux fruits et pot de gingembre) and a Modigliani at 31 million (Le fils du concierge) are soon going to seem like small things without much importance. The risk though, is tahtfrom oneday to the next, in the eyes of the public and according to the «auctions», a painter like Klimt can become more «important» than Cézanne. Only because his transfer from one collector to another can cost more. Change the names: replace Steve Wynn by Juventus and Zidane by Cézanne (and it rhymes!). It sounds a bit like the football market, don't you think?

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Paris Photo, the call of the North

Twenty one countries, 88 galleries, of which three quarters are foreign (20 American, 20 French, 8 Spanish and German, 5 British, etc) and 40 000 visitors expected: just when its 10th edition is about to open, Paris Photo has published figures that prove it is without a doubt the number one photography fair in the world.… Among the 27 new participants, we remark New-Yorker Charles Isaacs (specialised in Stieglitz and in photographs of the American Civil War) and the British Robert Hershkowitz, who presents a view of Paris by Fox Talbot, dated from 1843. Reconstitutions are in fashion: Baudoin Lebon is presenting the 18 photos from the first Witkin exhibition at the Cooper School in New York in 1974. This year the central section is dedicated to the Scandinavian scene that shows the social worries that occupy the elders such as Strönholm or Pedersen are not necessarily shared by their younger colleagues.

  • Paris Photo, au Carrousel du Louvre du 16 au 19 novembre 2006

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    Georges de la Tour is back

    PARIS – Georges de La Tour, the great painter from the XVIIth century, is a rather recent discovery. Who remembers him? Following this exhibition offered by the Orangerie, no one will be able to forget him. In the home of the Nymphéas they have reconstructed the large retrospective of 1934 that Charles Sterling had designed, after various journeys to the French province to discover neglected collections. Named «the Painters of Reality» due to their attachment to scenes from daily life, it opened the dors of our aesthetic pantheon to La Tour as well as Lubin Baugin or Sébastien Stoskopff and brought back to the front of the stage the Le Nain family and Philippe de Champaigne. One novelty, though, marks this «revival»: we also see included painters from the XXth century, influenced by their ancestors: Balthus, Hélion or authors in turn slightly forgotten such as Chapelain-Midy.

  • The painters of reality at the Orangerie, from 22 November 2006 to 7 March 2007

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  • Stella: Jacques, not Frank

    LYON – Jacques Stella (1596-1657) is one of those French painters from the XVIIth century who is currently being given a special treatment at the Orangerie (see here above). His native town has therefore concocted a retrospective of his work at the righ moment. It makes us discover an artist of many talents, capable of little pictures on stone (one of his specialties during his studies in Rome) or large religious compositions that made Richelieu happy. In nearly 200 paintings, drawings and prints, one captures an artist with an ideal itinerary since he ends up on the top the ladder as «ordinary painter of the King». We wil regret tath the lovely initiative of 1 December only ltakes place once: the soloists of the national Orchestra of Lyon will be in themuseum rooms to interpret, next to the paintings, the baroque music by Couperin ou Boismortier that fits them so well.

  • Jacques Stella at the musée des Beaux-Arts in Lyon, from 17 November 2006 to 19 February 2007.

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  • Vallet from the Valais

    MARTIGNY – He is certainly not the most known of the Swiss artists: Hodler, Vallotton or Segantini are a few light years ahead of him. That is because this artist from Geneva who died in 1929, kept a low profile all his life, fleeing society life to work on rural and family motives: the peasants, the harvests, baptisms, the landscapes of the Valais region, where he spent long periods, the chalets under the snow or the rye in the Spring. Vallet's images bring back to life a world of simple and modest pleasures, a strong Swiss country, one that is frugal and patient, in an immaculate, natural surrounding. The artist was good at drawing, with the gouache, with water colors and with oil paints. And Vallet had also learned as a young man to do wood engraving, a discipline he practiced assiduously in his house in Vercorin, on the high plateau. His wood press is going to be used again for this exhibition to print out some etchings from the original copperplates.

  • Edouard Vallet, l’art d’un regard at the Gianadda foundation, from 17 November 2006 to 4 March 2007.

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    Graphic artists of the world

    ECHIROLLES – This «Month of graphics» is a bit long since it lasts… two months. But we guess that must be the price for success for an event that has celebrated its 17th edition. Among the various exhibitions that are offered in the many public spaces in the satellite city of Grenoble, we will note in particular a retrospective dedicated to the Dutch artists from Studio Dumbar (who gave a visual identity to theBatavian postoffice and police) and to Annette Lenz, who derew the poster for this edition and who just received the great prize of the bienial event of Moscow. At the Moulins de Villancourt, one can see «9 women graphic artists», that associates productions by young female creators (Polish Joanna Górska or Peruvian Natalia Iguiñiz Boggio) to those of the stars in the discipline, such as American artist April Greiman.

  • Mois du graphisme d’Echirolles, from 17 November 2006 to 20 January 2007


    New York New York

    If one leafs through it in a distracted way, one may not perceive the interest in this book. This is a clinical remark: significant buildings of New York are photographed from the front (as much as possible), without any spectacular setting nor sunsets, without any bewitching shadows, in a white uniform light. In short, in the straight line of the documentary work of the Becher couple. This honesty, the refusal of the picturesque make these images that do not impress one nor do they bore one. And one feels like coming back to them, to compare them, to see how the face of a city evolves. For the 176 buildings are classified in chronological order, from the Morris-Jumel Mansion in 1765 to the Hearst Tower of 2006. One sees the unique buildings that were so dear to Serge Gainsbourg: he was an enthusiast of the sequence of tenses, in «New York is tall», he quotes above all the Waldorf Astoria from 1931 and the American International Building from 1932. As well as some pearls of lower stature such as the Sylvan Terrace, former horse stalls from 1882, or the Rockefeller Guest House from 1950, designed by Philip Johnson.

  • Manhattan New York, photographs by Gerrit Engel, Imprimerie nationale éditions, 2006, 324 p., ISBN :2-7427-6442-9 , 75 €.

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    BARCELONA – The Joan Miró foundation has just announced the birth of the Miró prize. Doted with 70 000 € through the patronage of the Caixa Girona bank, it will be granted every two years to a contemporary artist who knows how to express the values of research, commitment and freedom that were Miró's distinctive characteristics.

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    MONTREAL - Guy Cogeval, the director of the musée des Beaux-Arts of Montreal since 1998, has announced he will not seek a new mandate at the end of his contract, in June 2007.

    NEW YORK - A painting by Goya, Enfants à la carriole (1778), was robbed during its transfer from the museum of Toledo, Ohio, to the Guggenheim, where it was to be exposed in in a retrospective of Spanish painting, from the Greco to Picasso, to open on Friday 17.

    Description of the painting (in tiny letters) on the website of the museum of Toledo

    NEW YORK - In the contemporary art sale, on 14 November, a painting by Francis Bacon, Version n°2 of Lying Figure with Hypodermic Syringe, was sold for $15 million, setting a new record for the artist.

    PALMA OF MAYORCA – The Cologne Art Fair in the footsteps of Art Basel? Just like the Swiss event that set up a satellite in Miami, it has been announced that a small Art Cologne bis will be born in the Balearic Islands. The first edition will be held from 19 to 23 September 2007: some sixty galleries will be grouped together at the airport. A good enough reason to extend your vacations in the Mediterranean…

    PARIS – The museum of the Legion of Honor, located in the hôtel de Salm, in front of the musée d’Orsay, will reopen on 17 November after various years of works.

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    PARIS-The Daniel and Florence Guerlain foundation has announced the three "nominees" for the new prize of contemporary design: Swiss Sylvia Bäschli (1956), Spanish Javire Perez (1968) and French Jean-Luc Verna (1966). The winner will be named in March 2007 at Art Paris and will receive 15 000 €.

    VENICE-The Golden lion of the architecture Biennial event of Venice, that just closed, was awarded to the Danish pavilion. The Golden Lion for the career was awarded at the beginning of the event to British architect Richard Rogers.


    This week, do not miss

    Belgium, in optical views from the XVIII and XIX centuries

    BRUSSELS-Prior to the invention of television, we looked at the world for along time through optical boxes. It was an essential attraction during parties and fairs, and showed urbanscapes of far away towns and landscapes.Some sixty views of Belgium are shown at the museum of the Cinquantenaire: Brussels, as seen through the great urban transformations under Charles of Lorraine, as well as Ghent, Liege, Namur, Termonde...

    Read the article in art-of-the-day.info