Posts Tagged ‘art’

Melanie Manchot: Whitechapel Gallery

In art|BOOK on January 26, 2010 at 1:29 pm

This month, the Whitechapel Gallery will be showing a new film created by Melanie Manchot, Celebration (Cyprus Street).

The film is part of the Gallery Education Programme which comissions artists and explores the idea of a relationship between the gallery and public spaces.

In Celebration (Cyprus Street), Manchot takes a closer look into the ideas of individual and collective identity in Cyprus Street, East London. Working with the street’s residents, she has captured moments of the event with single tracking shots that gather the crowd together in front of the camera.

The film is a creative manipulation of still and moving images and works around the idea of a group portrait. Through playing with different images, Manchot creates and dissolves groups, raising questions of what it is like to be part of different communities.

Manchot’s film will be shown in conjunction with a range of her photographs, documenting archive footage as well as pictures taken on Cyprus Street.

Celebration (Cyprus Street) will be showing at Gallery 5/6, Whitechapel Gallery, from 13 Jan 2010 to 14 March 2010

BOOKlet Meets: Marina Sturino

In art|BOOK on January 14, 2010 at 11:01 pm


Flamenco (2008, Marina Sturino)

Capturing dance in its most beautiful form, Marina Sturino (b.1967) is a performing-arts-loving amateur photographer.

With a history of working on productions including FadoMeu (2005), Sturino’s passion for framing moments of a performance is only getting bigger.

When BOOKlet met Marina Sturino, we learned about her work with innovative choreographer Wiebe Moeys, her love for Imogen Cunningham and the dream she never fulfilled.

When did you begin your career as a photographer?

Mid-December, 2005.  Wiebe Moeys was working on his production, FadoMeu, for the Teatro delle Erbe in Milan. I took my first photos during rehearsals using his digital camera.

What inspires you about photography?

Dance in action. Musicians during concerts.  Babies at their first stage performance.  Some of my best photos aren’t published on the internet, as their subjects are babies and I want to respect their privacy.

Why is dance the central theme of your artwork?

I have been an amateur dancer since I was 17 and I have no intention to quit. I never had the possibility to study as a dancer, so working with professional dancers with my camera helps me to overcome my unfulfilled dream.

Tell  me more about Give More Hugs (2006).

One morning, Wiebe Moeys and I (plus dancers) met in a small theatre to work on the promotion of his dance company (Wiebe Moeys Dance Project).  Give More Hugs is the photograph that I took while he attempted to make human sculptures with five dancers.

What do you want people to feel when they see your photographs?

My love for dance and the performing arts.

What makes a good artist?

The ability to create artwork that calls forth emotion in the beholder.

Who is your favourite photographer?

Robert Mapplethorpe or Imogen Cunningham. In particular, I love Cunningham’s photos of the choreographer, Martha Graham.

How has Italian culture influenced your photography?

My Italian culture doesn’t influence my work. I’ve worked with Dutch choreographers who have danced throughout Europe and the USA. My favourite photographers, dancers and choreographers aren’t even Italian.

Describe your personality in five words.

Emotional, stubborn, honest, genuine, crazy.

Describe your photography in one word.


South Bank Show: The Nominees

In art|BOOK on January 10, 2010 at 10:15 pm

Being Human, TV Drama Nominee

Although this year’s South Bank Show will be the last of many, the selection of nominees for the 2010 event has continued to be impressive, reflecting the,  “range covered by The South Bank Show over the years”.

The awards will be presented by Melvyn Bragg on the 26 January at  a London ceremony and cover a diverse set of categories, from visual arts to dance.

And here are the nominees……

Classical Music:

City of Dreams: Vienna 1900-35

Nielsen Inextinguishable

Easter reflections


Home Time

The Inbetweeners

The Thick of it



Emc2 (David Bintley)

Limen (Wayne McGregor)


An Education

Fish Tank

The Damned United


Forest Gate (Peter Akinti)

The Little Stranger (Sarah Waters)

The Quickening Maze (Adam Foulds)


Florence and the Machine


The xx


A Streetcar Named Desire


The Habit of Art

TV Drama

Being Human


Red Riding

Visual Arts

Richard Long (Tate Britain)

Roger Hiorns (Seizure)

Anish Kapoor (RA)

Disobedience Makes History: Tate Modern

In art|BOOK on January 2, 2010 at 11:43 pm

This January, London’s Tate Modern will be playing host to Disobedience Makes History, a workshop exploring the history of creative disobedience.  The event will be led by the Laboratory of Insurrectionary Imagination and will focus on how the 20th century has provoked society to fight against the law with creative means such as art.

Considering that today’s society is full of economic and environmental concern, Disobedience Makes History stresses the point that these weaknesses should result in a creative resistance by the population.  The repression of the thoughts and fears of the worlds people should be turned around into artistic expression and this is the function artists should take.

The workshop will consist on discussions about the implementation of creative disobedience and its future.

Disobedience Makes History will be at Tate Modern on Sat 23 & 30 Jan from 10.30-17.30 in East Room, Level 7.

BOOKlet Meets: Barbara Nati

In art|BOOK on December 28, 2009 at 10:28 pm

Italian visual artist Barbara Nati uses an extensive range of photographs, transforming them into symbols of social and environmental issues.

Nati has studied everywhere from Perugia to New York, taking inspiration from photo-realist painter Anthony Brunelli and using her advertising background as a driving influence for her work.

Following Mists of Avalon and Long Time No Sea, Nati’s upcoming exhibition, One Man Show, starts January 24 in Mezzanotte di Pergola.

When BOOKlet met Barbara Nati, we discovered her influences, experiences and her focus.

What inspired you to become an artist?
I have been drawing since I was five. I remember being the first kid in my class who understood that the side view of a dog has just two legs because the other two are hidden. When I was a teenager, I used to go dancing and afterwards I would visit monuments and churches to draw them. Then I got my first analogic camera and suddenly fell in love.

What makes your work unique?
I’m not that sure it is – that’s why I’m thinking of moving my art towards a third dimension. My pictures will be produced on layers at different depths. I will be collaborating with a very wise and skilled American artist.

What issues do your works focus on?
I don’t have a narrow focus, but I have realised that most of my recent series revolves around my concern about the environment we are living in.

From early 2009, I have been focusing on Long Time No Sea – a study on a possible world without the sea. This series was inspired by the earthquake that hit central Italy last April. I wanted the audience to witness an infinity of uniform and hyper-detailed mutations that quake their boredom.

My next subject will be the snow, which will take on a more silent approach. It will show the darker side of a soft blanket.

What do you want your photographs to tell people?
My artwork is more of a manipulation. I want my settings to invite the viewer to look again at the things he takes for granted and to pulverize the naïve trust in what we consider to be real.

What is your favourite creation?
I tend to support losers.  As a matter of fact, I started to support my football team when it was in dire straits. I’ve always been a fan of Donald Duck as well. I apply the same sympathy to those works I created that never met the appreciation other works did.

Who is your favourite artist?
Claes Oldenburg is my favourite sculptor. I travel to ugly towns in Europe just to see his works. Wayne Thiebaud is my favourite painter, as I have an insane attraction towards artists who paint food. Erwin Olaf is my favourite photographer.

What makes a good artist?
His power of shaping a thick message into a fresh and never-seen-before kind of expression.

What do you think of UK art?
I think Great Britain has got the perfect foundation for an artist to pursue his career. People like to invest in contemporary art.  Not to mention Charles Saatchi who is the kind of person every country would like to have. However, it can have a lack of audacity that leads many British galleries to act ‘safe’.

How has your advertising background influenced your works?

I don’t see a big gap between art and creative advertising.  The more a work is creative, the more it is commercial. Advertising campaigns must be communicative and innovative to reach their goal. The same goes for art.

What did you learn From Anthony Brunelli?

I learned not to rush in order to have the best result with art production.

Tell me more about your work that will be in your new show in January.

It will take place in an unusual space – a hut among a rural area in Italy. I was immediately enthusiastic about the idea of an uncommon show curated by the young and smart Daniele DeAngelis. There will be a dozen works, mostly from my last series of castles built with industrial elements. It’s a focus on the present age, which has been depicted as an upsetting transition period, that hasn’t succeeded in synthesizing the symbol of its civilization yet.  My only concern will be the chance of snow that might force us to postpone the private view. That’s the dark side of independent new realities!

To See Works by Barbara Nati:

BOOKlet Meets: Meera Huraiz

In art|BOOK on December 21, 2009 at 10:29 am

Dubai-based Meera Huraiz has shown her works throughout her homeland and inVenice, Italy.  She is currently studying a BA at the College of Arts and Sciences, Zayed University.

In Huraiz’s BOOKlet interview, we learn about her desire to be an artist, the meaning of her sculptures and where she sees art in the future.

1.     What made you want to become an artist?

Becoming an artist was completely accidental. I did not plan to become one, but turned into one. Art is an urge, not a forced skill or a profession. It is a hunger for creative expression and my need to speak aloud. I have an unexplainable connection with my work.  It is somehow instinctual.

2.     Describe your art in 5 words

An eclectic formation of unspoken thoughts.

3.     Who is your favourite artist in Dubai?

The Iranian Ramin Haerizadeh.  I love his techniques and his subject matter. He is very genuine and daring – something that’s hard to find nowadays.

4.     Who is your favourite UK artist?

The Chapman brothers are my favorite British artists.  Their work tackles issues of human nature, which are very much of my interest.

5.     What are the ideas behind Metamorphis 1 and Metamorphis 2?

The series Metamorphosis depicts a biological transformation and mutation of the human body as a result of exterior factors. Therefore, sculpting it into a very odd and deformed object, it looks like a body that hasn’t completely grown into its full form.  Ironically, it also represents that of an infant in it’s mother’s womb.

6.     Why does photography interest you?

Because it can capture reality in a surreal manner.

7.     What does message did you want Weed to portray?

As artists we are inclined to become soaked into our worlds and there is a a strong desire to observe the things around us. This painting projects the beautiful and the ugly, and the notions of my contradicting surroundings.

8.     Do you have any upcoming exhibitions?

I do have exhibitions but I cannot announce for the time being.

9.     What do you think makes a good artist?

The desire to become one.

10.  What do you think art will be like in 10 years time?

It will transform and adapt to another time frame with different subjects.  Perhaps, it will reach another level of innovation. We will see new art movements new art schools and why not new techniques and mediums.

Oreet Ashery: Staying: Dream, Bin, Soft Stud and Other Stories

In art|BOOK on December 20, 2009 at 5:56 pm

From January 2010, London’s Artangel will be showing a new interaction project.  The exhibition titled, “Staying: Dream, Bin, Soft Stud and Other Stories” was created by Oreet Ashery and 12 lesbian asylum seekers who escaped countries such as Nigeria and Barbados due to discrimination against their sexual identities.

Within the project, a character takes her life stories and turns them into ideas such as rooms of a house, a dream and a gun that transforms into a camera. These forms of presentation were inspired by Ashery’s collection of discussions, doodles and interviews taken from emotional workshops with the other 12 women involved in Staying: Dream, Bin, Soft Stud and Other Stories.

Ashery’s contribution to Artangel was built upon complex work with the asylum seekers, focusing on the long procedures which requires gay asylum seekers to prove their sexual orientation and lifestyle.  As a result of studying these processes, Ashery created fictional characters that became symbols of the women involved. For example, the rooms of House represent diffferent aspects of a participant’s life effectively working as a theatrical self-portrait.  Bin also symbolises social structure and soft studs are used to play on the idea of a ‘butch’ woman.

The exhibition will be showing at Artangel from 20 January 2010 and you can learn more about the project itself at

Peeping Tom: The Newest in French Publishing

In art|BOOK on December 17, 2009 at 10:48 pm

As a result of being sick of the run of the mill content of French art magazines, former editors Stéphane Blanc and Caroline Niémant created Peeping Tom, a unique look at art today.

The magazine aims to challenge and engage its reader, bringing to attention new and unheard of artists.  Through experience, Blanc and Niémant became bored of the repetitive nature of artists names throughout magazines, and have utilised their publication to change this.

The main inspirations for Peeping Tom are scientology and paranormal activity. Charley, by Maurizio Cattelan was also a catalyst for the two creators.

Future aspirations for the magazine are to open a bookstore in Paris that highlights independent publishers. Also, Blanc and Niémant want to publish a selection of books by artists in the year 2010.

However, for now the next issue of Peeping Tom will be focusing on Mexico and the magazine is planned to be published annually.

The World’s Largest Underwater Gallery

In art|BOOK on December 13, 2009 at 2:33 pm

Jason deCaires Taylor, a British sculptor has designed the largest underwater gallery to date.

The ancient-looking figures in the picture (see left) are only some of the 400 life-size statues that will be laid on the bed of the Mexican Caribbean, off Isla Mujeres.

Jason, 35 hopes to create an artificial reef that will eventually attract algae and develop the aesthetic quality of the figures further.  His highly commended sculpture park aims to explore the relationship between modern art and the environment.  There is a need to preserve and protect our natural environments and this is certainly what is being promoted by this internationally recognised gallery.

Whitney Museum of American Art: Roni Horn aka Roni Horn

In art|BOOK on December 11, 2009 at 4:34 pm

Born in 1955, Roni Horn has been producing distinctive art for more than 30 years, exploring a range of issues such as gender, identity and the relationship between objects and their audience.

The exhibition consists of around 70 works ranging from small drawings to photographic installations to heavy sculptures.  Horn’s delicate drawings seem to relate to her time traveling and practicing in Ireland, representing the landscape.  Her focus on the doubling of self portrait photos appears to also reflect a similar landscape theme

Roni Horn aka Roni Horn is an exhibition established by the Whitney Museum of American Art and the Tate Modern and is the most thorough collection of Horn’s work so far.

Roni Horn aka Roni Horn is running until Jan. 24, 2010 and will then be shown at The Institute of Contemporary, Boston from Feb. 19 to Jun. 13, 2010