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Art diary

 

Chronicles of an undercover reporter From Paris to New York

 

Richard Prince was unable to attend his Paris opening at Almine Rech, having returned to New York after his mother was taken ill. A shame. His work was priced at $700,000 a piece. It was expensive. 

 

As for Jeff Koons, he brought along his entire family for his retrospective at the Centre Pompidou. He has at least six children, a wife, nannies, uncles, aunts, cousins, etc., and a mother in a wheelchair, who he asked when passing his earliest works, the plastic inflatables, “Hey Mom, do you remember when I did this?” (They date from the late 70s.) Never in the living memory of art criticism has such a swarm of society photographers been seen at one opening. It was familial and glamorous.

 

In Bottrop, at Wade Guyton’s opening, there wasn’t a single society snapper in sight. Bottrop? It’s a small provincial town 45 minutes from Cologne. The Galerie Gisela Capitain had assembled a dozen or so people to visit the Josef Albers Museum, which had commissioned Guyton to rehang its permanent collection as well as to produce new work for it. The trip had something of a this-was-how-modern-art-used-to-be feel to it. 

 

It was great.

 

In New York, in his enormous Brooklyn studio, the same Wade Guyton had asked John Armleder to create a series of canvases, which themselves turned out to be gigantic, in a palette of iridescent colours. Armleder was on form: he produced so many canvases that there wasn’t actually room to hang them all (despite its being one of the biggest studios I’ve ever had the privilege to visit). So he piled them up one on the other. The viewing took place during the big-bucks week for New York auction houses, when the circuit of ticketed galas and chic fundraisers for all manner of institutions is at its highest pitch. At Wade’s there were only friends, a pizza van parked out front and trestle tables. It was free. 

 

Paris Photo: I laughed a lot over my fellow critic Éric Troncy’s review of the Mapplethorpe exhibition which Isabelle Huppert “curated” at the Thaddaeus Ropac Gallery. “I hope she won’t feel qualified to perform open-heart surgery should I someday I require it…” It must be said that by making him so respectable and so barely sexual, Huppert seemed to have disactivated Mapplethorpe. It was a bit sad and prudish.

 

The Galerie Balice Hertling organized an Olivier Zahm exhibition without in the least disactivating the erotic charge of his photos. A wonderful print of his very pregnant wife, enthroned in an armchair with legs-akimbo in high heels, welcomed gallery goers in Belleville. It was cool.

 

At Ropac once again, but this time in Pantin, Sylvie Fleury – who we haven’t seen in Paris for almost five years – conjured up a performance in which actresses produced sounds with gestures transmitted by motion sensors to a computer programmed by IRCAM (the Institute for Musical and Acoustical Research and Coordination). There was a piece by Loïe Fuller, a sort of trance dance, then a femme fatale drying her hair, but it was the jogger that stole the show. In a very 80s leotard, up and down she skipped on the very stepper marketed by Jane Fonda in her fitness-queen heyday. Fleury could hardly hide her joy at its finally having arrived, since eBay had initially sent it to Swaziland, thinking that was the same as Switzerland. It was experimental. 

 

Maurizio Cattelan gets into copy (in art) with Gucci
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Maurizio Cattelan gets into copy (in art) with Gucci

Art Ever more committed to supporting contemporary art, Gucci and its creative director Alessandro Michele have invited artist Maurizio Cattelan to curate a thought-provoking Shanghai show about copies. Ever more committed to supporting contemporary art, Gucci and its creative director Alessandro Michele have invited artist Maurizio Cattelan to curate a thought-provoking Shanghai show about copies.

FIAC 2018 : Katharina Grosse's bonfire of colour at the Grand Palais
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FIAC 2018 : Katharina Grosse's bonfire of colour at the Grand Palais

Art Katharina grosse transforms the world with her spray gun. Born in 1961, the german artist has splattered many a prestigious museum with her violent colours, as well as her own bedroom and even a house. She’s now been invited by the villa médicis in rome, home to the french academy, which she’s transformed into an explosive landscape made up of trunks of a pine tree planted over a century ago by ingres. Katharina grosse transforms the world with her spray gun. Born in 1961, the german artist has splattered many a prestigious museum with her violent colours, as well as her own bedroom and even a house. She’s now been invited by the villa médicis in rome, home to the french academy, which she’s transformed into an explosive landscape made up of trunks of a pine tree planted over a century ago by ingres.

Elmgreen & Dragset storm Place Vendôme: "Will humanity disappear to give way to nature?"
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Elmgreen & Dragset storm Place Vendôme: "Will humanity disappear to give way to nature?"

Art Star fish have invaded the place vendôme! Who is responsible? Why elmgreen & dragset of course! Numéro art met up with the explosive duo, who are guests of honour at paris’s art fair fiac this autumn. Star fish have invaded the place vendôme! Who is responsible? Why elmgreen & dragset of course! Numéro art met up with the explosive duo, who are guests of honour at paris’s art fair fiac this autumn.

Numéro art reveals new cover starring artists Elmgreen & Dragset
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Numéro art reveals new cover starring artists Elmgreen & Dragset

Art Discover Elmgreen & Dragset shot by Miles Aldridge for the cover of Numero art #3, out October 12th. Elmgreen & Dragset are taking over the place Vendôme during the FIAC and will be celebrated at Galerie Perrotin in Paris. Plus, do not miss their current show at Whitechapel Gallery in London.  Discover Elmgreen & Dragset shot by Miles Aldridge for the cover of Numero art #3, out October 12th. Elmgreen & Dragset are taking over the place Vendôme during the FIAC and will be celebrated at Galerie Perrotin in Paris. Plus, do not miss their current show at Whitechapel Gallery in London. 

Frieze London 2018 pays tribute to female artists with “Social Work”
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Frieze London 2018 pays tribute to female artists with “Social Work”

Art During Frieze London, from 3 october to 7, a group of ten female critics and curators pays tribute to women artists whose work during the 1980s created broader support structures for those around them under the title Social Work. Curators Lydia Yee, Fatoş Üstek and Melanie Keen discuss three of the artists featured in Social Work, and suggest why it is important to re-assess their legacy three decades later. During Frieze London, from 3 october to 7, a group of ten female critics and curators pays tribute to women artists whose work during the 1980s created broader support structures for those around them under the title Social Work. Curators Lydia Yee, Fatoş Üstek and Melanie Keen discuss three of the artists featured in Social Work, and suggest why it is important to re-assess their legacy three decades later.

An encounter with Christian Marclay, at the Celine runway show and at the Tate Modern
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An encounter with Christian Marclay, at the Celine runway show and at the Tate Modern

Art In his first show for the house of Celine, Hedi Slimane paid a very marked tribute to the Swiss-American artist Christian Marclay by revisiting and transposing some of his works within the collection (prints on bags and clutches, embroidery on couture dresses, kimonos…) At the same time, Christian Marclay was taking hold of the Tate Modern with his major pieceThe Clock, shown for the first time in London in 2010, before winning the Golden Lion award at the Venice Biennale the following year. The 24-hour video installation is composed of thousands of films clips edited together to tell the actual time. The result is as captivating as it is poetic.   In his first show for the house of Celine, Hedi Slimane paid a very marked tribute to the Swiss-American artist Christian Marclay by revisiting and transposing some of his works within the collection (prints on bags and clutches, embroidery on couture dresses, kimonos…) At the same time, Christian Marclay was taking hold of the Tate Modern with his major pieceThe Clock, shown for the first time in London in 2010, before winning the Golden Lion award at the Venice Biennale the following year. The 24-hour video installation is composed of thousands of films clips edited together to tell the actual time. The result is as captivating as it is poetic.