Art Of The Day Weekly
#243 - from 26 January 2012 to 1 February 2012
Ceremonial mask in jade mosaic, La Rovirosa, Quintana Roo (Mexico), late Classic period, 17.5 x 16 cm. INAH Center, Quintana Roo, Chetumal. © Photo Martirene Alcantara/INAH (exhibition at Pinacothèque de Paris).
IN THE AIR
2012, the end of the world, or not
PARIS – This is the question that has millennium fans and the followers of Nostradamus awake at night. Will our word come to an end as predicted by the Maya astrologists and is repeated to us in fine? Prior to the possible end of the world, foreseen for the Winter solstice, we will at least have had the right to see the exhibition on the Maya jade masks which we had been deprived of last year in the midst of the Franco-Mexican tensions. This is one way to start understanding, based on these effigies of monarchs from Palenque or Calakmul, recently discovered and patiently restored, that the concept of time is purely subjective: in Mesoamerica, the king dies and is reborn in the shape of a corn on the cob, while later in time the world sinks and is reborn. We too have a specific vocabulary for these changes of periods: wars, natural disasters, crisis – and which now more than even seem to have a meaning … • To be seen: Les masques de jade mayas at the Pinacothèque de Paris, 26 January to 10 June 2012.
Adolfo Wildt, Caratere fiero-anima genitle (detail), 1912, marble with gold, h. cm. 40. Galleria Internazionale d’Arte Moderna di Ca’ Pesaro, Venice.
Rediscovering strange Wildt
FORLI (Italy) – Finally, he has been rediscovered! An artist known by certain aficionados, but unheard of by numerous art amateurs, Alfredo Wildt (1868-1931), was a hair dresser and then a jeweller apprentice before discovering sculpture at the age of 13. At the age of 26, a Prussian collector –Franz Rose - signed a contract with him that covered the artist’s needs: for 18 years, the aesthete bought the first edition of each of his sculptures for an annual salary of 4000 lire. He then starts making from plaster, wax or, better yet, marble, hallucinating portraits, tortured faces, with sunk in features or amplified and exaggerated. In the restful venue of a restored church and its cloister, in what was Mussolini’s native town, his shocking creations, between symbolism and Art nouveau, are brought together with works that impressed him, from Cosmè Tura to Casorati.
• Wildt, l’anima e le forme at the Musei San Domenica, 28 January to 17 June 2012.
Art of the day also recommends...
• BASEL –The Beyeler foundation welcomes an ambitious retrospective of Pierre Bonnard with some sixty paintings. 29 January to May 2012.
• MUNICH – The Neue Pinakothek presents the first major retrospective on the continent of George Stubbs (1724-1806), the «painter of horses». 26 January to 6 May 2012
• PARIS - The Grand Palais presents fifteen gems from the collection of the Musée des plans-reliefs: it is the first exhibition of the Maison de l’histoire de France, a new institution with a difficult family tree, that already has a logo but not yet a venue (expected in 2015). Until 17 February 2012.
Box n° 195. France. 1st Empire. Infantry (bivouac). Approximately 1 400 soldiers natural and painted. Estimate: 400-600 €. Courtesy Piasa, Paris.
The charge of the 250 000 soldiers
PARIS – All boys used to play with led soldiers in another era – but not so today. In our day of over-abundance, the deluge of brigadiers, drums and American trappers programmed by Piasa is nevertheless unusual. There are no less than 250 000 figurines from the Heinrichsen house up for sale. Obviously not piece by piece, which would take a good year to do (we consider the most efficient auctioneers can go at 100 an hour) but rather by lots of 500 to 1000 (estimated between 200 and 600 €). They all come from the citadel of Belle-Ile-en-Mer, a private property whose new master does not share with his predecessors the taste for little soldiers: he would rather get rid of them to finance restoration works.
• Very important collection of pewter plates at Drouot-Richelieu (Piasa) 26 Janvier 2012.
ARTIST OF THE WEEK
Eko Nugroho, New Person with same old problem, 2011, 190 x 130 cm, acrylic and ink on canvas. Production SAM Art Projects. Photo credit: André Morin.
Eko Nugroho, an urban symphony
He is well known in his country, but while his reputation still needs to be made here it is growing elsewhere: he just enjoyed a personal exhibition at Lombard Freid Projects in New York and we all remember his fresco on the Sucrière in Lyon in 2009. Eko Nugroho, an Indonesian born in 1977, is hyperactive: back home he directs a cartoon strip fanzine, is a business man in the recycling of clothes and the production of embroideries, aside from his artistic activity. It is just as wide. He combines painting, textiles and sounds, be it more, like in the exhibition dedicated to him at the Musée d’art moderne de Paris, which wraps up a Parisian satellite dish following his Sam Projects prize in 2010 and his residence of various months in villa Raffet. His characters in clothes covered with slogans, often with masks, are obviously inspired by the urban universe and move in an environment covered with tags from the ground to the ceiling.
• Eko Nugroho is exhibited at the Musée d’art moderne de la Ville de Paris, until 21 March 2012.
OPENINGS OF THE WEEK
The Louvre, its 35 000 objects shown (and over 400 000 in the reserves), its 60 000 m2 of exhibition rooms, its 8.8 million visitors (in 2011)… The figures of the most visited museum in the world make one’s head spin. The systematic visitor would need a life time and an infallible organization to see everything. We can limit ourselves to certain eras, or certain departments. Or, as is suggested in this book, follow one’s curiosity and search for the unusual to organize a treasure hunt: find the oldest object of the collection (a Neolithic stone 9000 years old), the painting that can be looked at forward and backwards (a Daniele da Volterra), make an appointment on the Minister’s staircase, in the room with the Seven Chimneys or in the room of the Caryatides, where the body of the only sovereign who died at the Louvre (Henri IV) was exposed…
• Louvre secret et insolite by Daniel Soulié, Parigramme, 2011, 196 p., 19 €.
ANGOULEME- The 39th International Comic strip Festival (39ème Festival International de la bande dessinée) will be held from 26 to 29 January 2012.
BOLOGNA - The 36th contemporary art fair ArteFiera will be held from 26 to 30 January 2012.
LYON - La Sucrière, a former sugar factory, will be used specifically during the Biennale d'art contemporain de Lyon, and will open on 1 February 2012.
PARIS - The Louvre museum is organizing the 5th edition of the Journées internationales du film sur l'art, from 25 to 29 January 2012.
PARIS - The Munch exhibition attracted 486 888 vistors from 21 September 2011 to 23 January 2012, and thus becomes the 6th most attended exhibition in the history of the Centre Pompidou.