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Posts Tagged ‘Biennials’

Globalisation of contemporary art market evident in growth of art fairs – The Economist

Posted by artradar on August 17, 2010


ART FAIRS ECONOMY

A recent article in the Economist comments on the globalisation of art and how art fairs accelerate the transnational exposure of artists, something that could become necessary for artists if they want to attract the attention of serious collectors and art investors. Importantly, it also identifies the current international art fair hot spots. Read on for our summary of this article.

Globalisation of the art market

Globalisation is one of the most important phenomenon in the history of recent art. Contemporary art needs the potential of a global market and thus enters the art fair. Biennials and landmark exhibitions help to initiate global change in the art scene. International art fairs spread belief in contemporary art through the help of banks and royalty, from Deutsche Bank to local rulers in the Middle East.

In addition, the article quotes Marc Spiegler and Annette Schönholzer, co-directors of Art Basel, as saying that private collections are becoming increasingly international. Collectors start by acquiring art from their own nation and eventually acquire internationally. In many countries contemporary art has become an economic project involving collectors, dealers and huge cultural districts with museums and art fairs.

Art Basel 2009.

Art Basel 2009.

For an art fair to be properly diverse, careful curation is essential. For good international fairs, this not only means that attending galleries show talented artists, but also that they show artists that live in the country the gallery is located in. As quoted in The Economist,

As Lucy Mitchell-Innes of Mitchell-Innes & Nash, a New York gallery, warns: ‘It’s a problem if four or five booths have the same artist’s work. A good international fair wants Chinese galleries to bring talented Chinese artists, not another Antony Gormley.’

International art fair hot spots

The locational hierarchy of art fairs differs from that in the auction market. For art auctions, the three most prominent cities are New York, London and Hong Kong, in that order. When talking about art fairs, Basel would come first, but what follows this lead is unclear: Miami or London, New York or Paris?

Even more notable are the art fairs currently sprouting up in Asian countries. These are creating alternate markets for art and challenging Western leadership. Adding to the hierarchical ladder are two newcomers: Hong Kong’s ART HK (Hong Kong International Art Fair) and Abu Dhabi Art, operating from the Middle East.

What art fairs mean for artists and their art

In general, art fairs can accelerate the transnational exposure of all artists represented. Art Basel is unrivalled in this category and it may be because it has always defined itself as international. The frenzied demand for new art peaked with the creation of smaller art fairs. Some of them work as satellites to the major European events, the biennials, art festivals and fairs such as Basel. These budding fairs cater to lesser known, emerging artists.

Within the art market, that an artist is “international” has become a selling point. Consequently, the local artist has become almost insignificant, while those called “national” are damned with faint praise.

Art fairs, with their aggregation of art dealers forming a one-stop shoppers’ marketplace for art, attract high-spending collectors, generate greater sales and have to some extent replaced galleries with their increasing drawing power. Still the globalisation of the art is not just about money. There are a growing number of non-profit biennials that are developing along with the market structures. As quoted in The Economist,

Massimiliano Gioni, a curator based in Milan and New York, who is overseeing the Gwangju Biennial, which opens in South Korea in September, recalls that the avant-garde was ‘built on a transnational community of kindred spirits,’ adding, ‘sometimes I long for that.’

This is an Art Radar summary of “Global frameworks – Art-fair musical chairs, first published in The Economist.

JAS/KN

Related Topics: art fairs, international artists, market watch – globalisation

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Catch Palestinian Art in Venice – Islamic art in the spotlight or in a corner?

Posted by artradar on July 29, 2009


Emily Jacir, Stazione 2009

Emily Jacir, Stazione 2009

ART PALESTINE VENICE BIENNALE

The debut of Palestine contemporary art at the 53rd Venice Biennale (June 7th – Sept. 30th) attempts to elevate Palestine art to the international spotlight. This post explores whether Islamic art from Palestine has been marginalized and to what extent the inaugural show  throws light on Palestinian art today.

In the past, Venice played a merchant role as a fulcrum between the Western and the Islamic world. Now, as an artistic realm, Venice gives Palestinian art its virgin step to impress a wider audience in the west.

However, contrary to traditional art, contemporary Palestinian art does not equate to Muslim art, and perhaps that’s why the work of seven participating artists is being featured at the Biennale. To avoid religious controversy, Muslim message is absent, whether or not it’s a true representation of Palestinian art is questionable, but Palestinian art does emerge in a gamut of forms.

Instead of pushing forward a message, it is more about preserving a collective memory. Subject to approval, chef d’oeuvres such as Gregor Schneidor’s enormous black cube, inspired by the Ka’aba in Mecca, did not pass through the religious sensitivity screening.

While accepted in the Muslim community in Germany, it was rejected at the Biennale in 2005 because some viewed it as a terrorist threat. Despite Venice’s ingrained connections to Islam culture, what is representative of all Islamic symbols is still not tolerated at the exposition. 

If the theme does not revolve around Islamic roots, Palestinian artists must borrow other elements from their culture and history to assert a unique statement about their artwork. Free from religious implications, their artwork references Palestinian issues both on a local and global scale, bridging the past and the present.

Among the participating artists at the Biennale, Emily Jacir installs a stazione that encourages cultural exchange between Venice and the Arab world within architectural space and design. Situated on all of the vaporetto #1 stops, stazione provides a link between Venice’s heritage and the Arabic world, with Arabic translations inscribed on the shops in order to inform tourists of the rich origins. 

Shadi HabibAllah, Ok, hit, hit but don't run 2009

Shadi HabibAllah, Ok, hit, hit but don't run 2009

Another artist Shadi HabibAllah, through video and animation of hominoids, delves into the visual perception of natural objects surrounding us in the mechanical state – that work is a living experience, not just a visual reference.

To evoke notions of collective past memories, Taysir Batniji uses multimedia approach by playing the “Date Video”, significant in abstracting a process where time is suspended, as the ticks resonated the length of time since the border closures that forbid him from returning home.

Via photography and video of the panorama of the structural architecture and geography of the Shufhat Refugee camp in Jerusalem, Jawad Al Malhi explores the refugee population that is marginalized and neglected. Since outsiders don’t have access to narrow passages in the camp, the panoramic view enables exploration of the image of camp as well as the entropic nature of the space of the camp. By exploring claustrophobia and containment within the camp, he casts light on the dark side of reality in the land of promise.

Taysir Batniji, Atelier 2005

Taysir Batniji, Atelier 2005

Sandi Hilal and Alessandro Petti employ a sound installation device to explore the contemporary spatialization of urban centers. They take a dialogue in the dark approach, where the visitors enter a black-out room, blinded and only able to hear murmurs and cries of recorded discourse of what it is like to live in the Palestinian community. Heartbeats and musical interventions compounded the effect further. These two artists endeavor to illustrate the Ramallah Syndrome, which references the illusion of the new spatial social order and economic opportunities after the Oslo peace process. They question how Ramallah maintains as the city of Normalcy despite Israeli occupation and daily destructions.

Last but not least on the list of exhibiting artists, Khalil Rabah applies the Biennale idea to his work “A Geography: 50 Villages -The 3rd Riwaq Biennale”. This imaginary biennale takes place in the public space of 50 Palestinian villages, all of which are characteristic of ancient and original architecture and archways. While it rethinks confinement in physical space , it also runs parallel with Riwaq’s goal to protect and promote cultural heritage in Palestine. Meanwhile, by omitting large-scale and formal artistic presentation, it protests against the homogenization of the standard in the international art market. Moreover, it reexamines the biennale culture and ways to link Palestine art with the rest of the world.

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Contributed by Wendy Ma

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Posted in Biennials, Calligraphy, Electronic art, Fantasy art, Islamic art, Italy, Palestinian, Photography, Religious art, Sound art, Time, Venice, Video | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Third Guangzhou Triennial reviews and highlights – South China Morning Post, Shanghai Eye

Posted by artradar on October 6, 2008


TRIENNIAL GUANGZHOU CHINA

Art highlights, Chinese censorship and a list of Asian artists and curators.

Farewell to Post Colonialism, Third Guangzhou Triennial, Guangdong Museum of Art, Guangzhou, China: 6 September to 16 November 2008

Hong Kong based art critic John Batten in the South China Morning Post gives a thumbs up to the “mostly excellent” art at the Third Guangzhou Triennial, an exhibition of over 300 works by 180 artists in Guangdong Musuem of Art, but is less enthusiastic about the “elaborate explanations” of the curators whose “theoretical notions should simply be ignored”. His thoughtful review discusses the work of Hong Kong artist Tozer Pak Sheung-chuen whose conceptual project Page 22 (Half Folded Library) consists of secretly folding page 22 in 15,500 books in the Ottendorfer Branch Public Library in New York. Other pieces Batten favours included ‘fascinating’ video works in The Tea Pavilion and Middle East Channel:

  • Corazon Amaya-Canete and Moira Zoitl’s collaborative work on foreign domestic helpers in Hong Kong
  • Rania Stephan’s interviews with children in Lebanon
  • Tomoko Konoike’s manga video installation Knifer Forest
  • Archana Hande’s spoof of marriage and dating websites www dot arrange ur own marriage dot com

Shanghai-based blogger Shanghai Eye has less to say about the art  – “the strength of the triennial was its very interesting mix of international and local flavours” – and instead gives a hilarious account of the washout “anarchic opening press conference” and the antics of the Chinese censors. “Cultural bureau officials descended en masse the day before the show opened, offended by a preview which appeared in the local newspaper “Southern Weekend.” The curators and museum director said this was par for the course, and after some negotiation a work by Zhu Yu, a discourse entitled “192 proposals for members of the united Nations” had some of the texts blurred. “If you squinted you could still read the text, so I didn’t quite see the point,” said Nigel Prince, a visiting curator from Ikon gallery in the UK.”

 

Asian artists:

(Group) Lin and Lam, Hui ZHANG, Wei LIU(b.1972 China), Gang ZHAO ( b.1954 China), Sopawan BOONNIMITRA, Corazon AMAYA-CANETE (Philippines), Jaishri ABICHANDANI, Haegue YANG(b.1971), Doris Waiyin WONG, Masahiro WADA, Nana Seo EUNA, Arin RUNGJANG, Warren Chiwo LEUNG, Kit LEE, Michael Honghwee LEE, Ade Darmawan, Sreshta PREMNATH, Jeuno KIM, Jesal KAPADIA, Apichatpong WEERASETHAKUL, Minleong CHAI, Matyn SEE, Riri RIZA, Amir MUHAMMAD, Chihyin LIN, Minjie ZHONG, Anding ZHANG, Yan MA, Tao JIANG, Kaiyu XIAO, Yin WANG(王音 b.1964), Qin QI, Xiaodong LIU, Jianyu DUAN, Yi ZHOU( b.1961), Duanxiang ZHENG, Fang YE, Jiechang YANG( b.1956), Zhen XU( b.1977), Junyong WU, Jiahao WANG( b.1975), Kaisyng TAN( b.1975), Muchen, Yinong SHAO(b.1961 China), Dalkh OCHIR, Jun NGUYEN-HATSUSHIBA, Huma MULJI, Heungshing LIU, Simon LEUNG, Kesang LAMDARK, Tomoko KONOIKE (Japan), Jitish KALLAT (India), Aili JIA, Xiaopeng HUANG, Archana HANDE, Soonmin YONG, Ran CHENG, Hamra ABBAS, Yu ZHU( b.1970), Shanzhuan WU, Jianwei WANG, Inga Svala THORSDITTIR, Shiming QIU, Anxiong QIU( b.1972), Tozer Sheungchuen PAK, KOOSIL-JA, Yongping HUANG, Ping LUO, Xiangcheng HU, Emily CHENG, Tong CHEN, Guogu ZHENG(b.1970), Bo ZHENG, Yuxing WU( b.1976), Weili YEH, Fudong YANG( b.1971), Total Art Group, Zhijie QIU( b.1969), Bundith PHUNSOMBATLERT, T. Minh Ha TRINH, Xiong XIAO, Jie LU, Dahong LIU, Mengbo FENG, Amy CHEUNG, Chiehjen CHEN, Dalia Al-Kury (Jordan), Yasmina Ben Ari (Egypt), Mireille AstorE (Libanon), Reem Bader (Jordan), Kaya Behkalam (Iran), Alia El Bialy (Egypt), Hisham Bizri (Libanon), Shahram Entekhabi (Iran), Lamia Joreige (Libanon), Khaled Kafez (Egypt),  Nadine Khan (Egypt),
Shula Lipski (Libanon), Waheeda Malullah (Bahrain), WaëL Noureddine (Libanon), Ayman Ramadana (Egypt), Hamed Sahihi (Iran), Larissa Sansour ( Palestine / USA), Akram Zaatari (Libanon), Rania Stephan (Libanon),

Curators: Sarat MAHARAJ, Shiming GAO (b.1976), Johnson Tsongzung CHANG

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Asian artists on show in Liverpool Biennial September to November 2008

Posted by artradar on August 31, 2008


EVENT BIENNIAL LIVERPOOL

Celebrating 10 years of commissioning ambitious and challenging new work by leading international artists, the 5th edition of Liverpool Biennial’s International exhibition MADE UP runs from 20 September to 30 November 2008.

Artists from Asia include:

Khalil Rabah

Khalil Rabah

Khalil Rabah (Palestine 1961)

Using narratives that hover between fiction and reality, Palestinian Khalil Rabah’s installations, objects, videos, actions and interventions articulate the effects of war on Palestinian society, its economy and identity.

His ongoing Palestinian Museum of Natural History and Humankind, for instance, which has had manifestations in Athens, Istanbul, Amsterdam and elsewhere, playfully interrogates history as an accumulation of fact and artifice. This fictionalised museum also questions the notion of archiving and the idea of the museum itself as a repository of objects and construction of collective knowledge. Similarly, in constructing a London office for the United States of Palestine Airlines in 2007, or planting olive trees – uprooted from their original home in Palestine – outside the United Nations in Geneva in 1995, Rabah provocatively plays out ownership of the past and reclamation of a future currently denied.

Yayoi Kusama (Japan 1929)

Working across a broad range of media, Kusama is perhaps best known for her compulsive repetition of a recurring vocabulary of forms – polka dots, or phallic tubers, for example – often rendered on bright yellow or red backgrounds.

U-Ram Choe (Korea 1970)

Kinetic sculpture maker U-Ram Choe’s work is a fanciful dialogue of aesthetics and machinery, and explores themes of biological transformation, flight, and movement.

Guy Ben-Ner (Israel 1969)

Low-tech, but ingeniously inventive, Guy Ben-Ner’s videos often centre on home and family, exploring, exposing and exploiting the relationship he has with his children.

Atelier Bow Wow (Japan) and Ai Weiwei (China) are also on show.

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Posted in Biennials, Chinese, Israeli, Japanese, Kinetic, Korean, New Media, Palestinian, Sculpture, Video | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »