advertise lettre

Home > ArtoftheDay Weekly > #258 - from 10 May 2012 to 16 May 2012

Art Of The Day Weekly

#258 - from 10 May 2012 to 16 May 2012

Daniel Buren, Excentrique(s), work on site, 2012, 380 000 m3. Monumenta 2012 – Daniel Buren, Paris. © Daniel Buren, ADAGP, Paris. Photo Didier Plowy.


Buren takes over Paris

He already created a scandal fifty years ago with his “clandestine” palisades with alternate 8.7 cm wide bands (appr. 3.5 inches). Forty-two years ago he created a scandal at the Guggenheim, pushing Donald Judd to call him an installer of colored paper to the point of having his giant stripped curtain dismounted. Twenty-six years ago he created a scandal with his bi-colored columns at the Palais-Royal. Today Buren no longer creates any scandal. None at all: he is one of the stars of contemporary art, and is probably the best known French visual artist in the world, ahead of Boltanski, Sophie Calle or Annette Messager. We said so just a year ago, during his exhibition at the Centre Pompidou Metz. His most recent installation underlines this fact even more, it is a consecration. By setting up in the Grand Palais, after Richard Serra and Anish Kapoor, he has traced an initiatic itinerary, all in circles, inspired from Persian mathematical formulas, called Excentriques. He colored the cupola, meant to become a luminous and constantly changing beacon.
Monumenta 2012: Daniel Buren at the Grand Palais from 10 May to 21 June 2012

Know more


Daniel Buren is 74 years old today. Which are the French artists that can take his place tomorrow? Here is a selection, unavoidably limited, based on the current exhibitions in Paris.

Laurent Grasso, Untitled, 2009, DVD Pro HD, 17 min 30 sec. Courtesy Galerie chez Valentin, Paris & Sean Kelly Gallery, New York. © Laurent Grasso / ADAGP, Paris, 2012

Blazy, Grasso and Sala: questioning the world

The artists could not remain insensitive to the themes of the environment, global heating, or waste. Among those who faced the challenge, Michel Blazy (born in 1966) is one of the most original. His installations have the virtue of being “rotten”, that is alive, made up of plants, grains and food that evolve over the period of the exhibition. We will have a new example with Bouquet final (at the Collège des Bernardins from 10 May to 15 July). Laurent Grasso (born in 1972), winner of the prix Duchamp in 2008 is one of those artists that cannot be catalogued since he uses all the resources of creation (photography, video, drawing, painting and even sculpture) to ask serious questions on our world: what is memory? Where is reality? Can we still measure time? (At the Jeu de paume, as of 22 May) Anri Sala (born in 1974) enjoys as much recognition . He is Albanian and settled in Paris a long time ago. Photography and video are his favorite instruments and he brought together various of his recent works in the shape of a sound choreography (at Centre Pompidou until 6 August).

Bertille Bak Robe, 2009, in collaboration with Charles-Henry Fertin. Courtesy Galerie Xippas, Paris

Bak and Auguste-Dormeuil face the demons of society

Bertille Bak (born in 1983) prefers a social dimension. She has been covered with prizes (Gilles Dusein, Hiscox), she has a quasi-documentary way of looking at current or past commmunities, though always sufficiently original (the Poles in the mines in the North, unemployed workers, residents of low-income housing in Bangkok (at the galerie Xippas until 2 June and at the Triennale of the Palais de Tokyo). Same interest for the socio-political themes at Renaud Auguste-Dormeuil (born in 1968), who made himself a name through his sky maps on the eve of devastating events (Guernica or 9/11). He also traces the security obsession of our political leaders recorded in the video cameras, the surveillance and “traceability” methods (at the galerie Fabienne Leclerc from 3 May to 16 June)

.Stéphane Pencréac'h Minotaure, 2012, oil and parts of full scale mode on canvas, 200 x 200 cm. Courtesy galerie Anne de Villepoix, Paris.

Pasqua, Pencréac'h: painting resists

To say painting is dead is an expression we use and abuse of. All we need do is see the work of Philippe Pasqua (born in 1965) to be convinced the human figure – whether they also include “palimpsests” half erased or skulls in the shape of “vanities” – is the focus for a great number of artists (at the galerie RX until 25 May). Stéphane Pencréach’ (né en 1970) is an example of a self-taught artist, who produces powerful, monumental paintings, often imbued with eroticism (galerie Anne de Villepoix, from 12 May to 23 June)

Claude Closky, To die at 10:08 AM, collage and ball-point pen on paper, 30 x 21 cm. Courtesy galerie Laurent Godin, Paris.

Moulène and Closky: between image and language

In the same manner, conceptual art still stands its own as can be seen in the recent intronisation of Jean-Luc Moulène (born in 1955) at P.S.1, the New York temple of contemporary art. In Paris, we can take a peek at his work–photographs taken by the thousands of one same site referring to childhood memories (at the galerie Chantal Crousel until 16 June). Claude Closky (born in 1963) enjoys exploring language (or to read the world through language) that brings him close to Joseph Kossuth or to Art & Language. He is also very involved in collective exhibits as can be seen in Ça et là (at the fondation d’entreprise Ricard, until 21 May).

Bernard Moninot, Ombres croisées, 2008, drawing on silk, 60 x 75 cm. Courtesy galerie Catherine Putman, Paris.

Moninot and all the others

Poetry and the indescribable also have their place, for example in the work of Bernard Moninot (born in 1949), that has been showing us for some years how the wind draws. He is back to update us on this project and to present evanescent drawings on silk (at the galerie Catherine Putman, from 5 May to 16 June, at the galerie Baudoin Lebon as of 24 May). Some of these artists and others – it is not for lack of talent but rather of space that we do not mention more of them – may be seen at Triennale du Palais de Tokyo, that draws up a wide panorama.

These events open this week

Urban art in its maturity

ANGERS – The wave of urban art, which has met true recognition over the past years thanks to Blek le Rat and Jonone, is represented at the festival Artaq in Angers, held in the streets of the city and that also presents the personal collection of Nicolas Laugero Lasserre, the director of Espace Pierre Cardin in Paris (photo: one of his Miss.Tic). We will discover new forms of intervention such as the “Yarn Bombing”, a way of occupying space by …knit installations. The ultra-contemporary sometimes joins the ultra-classic.
From 11 to 13 May 2012.

Know more

Koons, a gold mine?

BASEL - Jeff Koons has become, with Damien Hirst and Murakami, the symbol of the artist-businessman with colossal revenues. The Fondation Beyeler tries to see through all of this in his work that sways between kitsch and humour (photo: Ushering in Banality, 1988, Private collection Photo Schaub Hoffner, Koln © Taschen GmbHs).
From 13 May to 2 September 2012.

Know more

30 artists for Track

GHENT – Track is a show of contemporary art that brings together in the streets of Ghent confirmed artists such as Fischli & Weiss (the latter just died recently, this is one of their last common works) and future creators such as Ahmet Ogut or Aron Levin (photo: Emilio López-Menchero, Bernadette, Moscou, 2012).
From 12 May to 16 September 2012.

Know more



AJACCIO - Four paintings stolen in February 2011 from the Fesch museum (a Poussin, a Bellini, a Mariotto and an anonymous Umbrian painter) were found on a parking lot on 6 May 2012.

Know more

DAKAR- Dak'art, the 10th biennal of African contemporary art will be held from 11 May to 10 June 2012.

Know more

LONDON - The Herzog & de Meuron architect firm and artist Ai Weiwei have unveiled their project for the annual ephemeral pavilion at the Serpentine Gallery.

Know more

NEW YORK - The Scream, a pastel from 1896 by Edvard Munch, sold for $120 million at Sotheby's on 2 May 2012, and has thus become the most expensive painting in the world at an auction. On 8 May, the Modern and Contemporary Art sale at Christie's fetched $388,8 million with Mark Rothko’s Orange, Red, Yellow setting a new world record for post-war art at $86.9 million.

Sotheby's website

SAO PAULO - The SP-Arte contemporary art fair will be held from 10 to 13 May 2012.

Know more

VIENA - Arr Austria, a fair dedicated to Austrian art, will be held from 9 to 13 May 2012 in the rooms of the Leopold Museum.

Know more

advertise lettre