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20150703110643-11402963_10103354446973205_6306135077341227593_n Khaled Jarrar Paints a Rainbow: The West Bank Mural That Spurred a Fierce Debate About Oppression   Pick-button-0f29c6c075c514ef3a12253f1d60018e
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Posted 7/3/15

In response to the U.S. Supreme Court decision in favor of marriage equality, Ramallah-based artist Khaled Jarrar wittingly spurred a cultural debate in the West Bank when in open daylight hours on Monday he painted a rainbow on a section of the wall in the West Bank near the congested Qalandiya checkpoint. Almost instantly, the other pervasive wall in Jarrar’s life, his Facebook page, became a tangled bramble of death threats, pledges of solidarity, and heated discussion. The mural, which Jarrar... [more]

20150703172218-b99527618z Durex Pope   Pick-button-0f29c6c075c514ef3a12253f1d60018e
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Posted 7/3/15

How do you like your Eggs? Controversial. This may be the answer the Milwaukee Art Museum would give after its recent acquisition of Eggs Benedict by Nicki Johnson. Although, rather than a lush scooping of hollandaise drizzled over ham hock, this dish consists entirely of a portrait of Pope Benedict XVI made from 17,000 colored condoms. Many Catholics, not being the biggest fans of responsible spunk containment, have thrown in that extra delicious garnish—controversy. Even possibly going for that ultima... [more]

20150703201021-de_sousa__documenta13_museum_fridericianum_2012 Learning from Athens: How Can documenta 14 Respond to the Greek Crisis?   Pick-button-0f29c6c075c514ef3a12253f1d60018e
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Posted 7/3/15

It's been one of the most turbulent weeks in the modern history of Greece. The nation's position within the eurozone remains precarious following the results of Sunday's referendum when Greek voters chose to reject the austerity terms of an EU bailout. Their decision follows a week of last minute talks, banks closing their doors, the imposition of capital controls, and non-compliance on the country's IMF payment deadline last Tuesday. The so-called "Grexit,” equally feared and desired by d... [more]

20150701075931-the_seed__detail_ Wonder and Connection: On Fabricating Nature in Art   Pick-button-0f29c6c075c514ef3a12253f1d60018e
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Posted 7/1/15

One issue that weighs on my psyche as an artist working in the realm of realism is that of understanding the attraction to and value of created nature in art. In my own work, I create and preserve moments from nature as a statement on the transience of life. But, during my wanderings through picturesque parks and other abundantly verdant spaces in Seattle, my current city of residence, I began to question why we seek to recreate imagery from the organic world when it already appears perfectly in na... [more]

20150630164650-jacco__olivier__return-_2007_2 Out of the Black Box, into the White Cube   Pick-button-0f29c6c075c514ef3a12253f1d60018e
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Marina Alexeeva, Marco Brambilla, Mat Collishaw, Ger Van Elk, William Kentridge, Marzia Migliora, Jacco Olivier, Elisa Sighicelli, Bill Viola at Museu Nacional d'Art de Catalunya May 28th - August 30th
Posted 6/30/15

Three rooms into the modern art section of the Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya the film Tide Table is projected on the wall. It’s a typical William Kentridge piece: animated black and white drawings, frolicking bathers are observed by Ghadhafi-like generals, a cow is slaughtered in a cabana, lots of political innuendo. Even though the film is combined with a couple of drawings by the South African artist, it’s pretty much a stand-alone presentation. It lacks the kind of conte... [more]

20150630205022-2 Dubai’s Precocious Gallery Scene Expands   Pick-button-0f29c6c075c514ef3a12253f1d60018e
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Posted 6/30/15

Alserkal Avenue, Dubai’s industrial arts district, was originally a marble factory and is tucked away in the city’s least tourist friendly area, near labor camps, auto repair shops, cheap cafeterias, and makeshift mosques—a far cry from the five star hotel lobbies and glitzy skyscrapers the city is most often associated with abroad. In the wake of the first Christie’s auction of Contemporary Middle Eastern Art in 2006, and the launch of Art Dubai as an annual fair platfo... [more]

20150629143751-4 The Soldier as Artist: Khaled Jarrar Chisels Away at the Wall   Pick-button-0f29c6c075c514ef3a12253f1d60018e
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Posted 6/29/15

Two boys crouch on either side of the wall that separates the West Bank from Jerusalem. They are smuggling 1,000 loaves of Ka’ak Al Quds (“bread of Jerusalem”) through a hand-bored hole in the concrete. Ramallah-based artist Khaled Jarrar interviews them from behind an unsteady camera. “Pull! Pull!” urges the older boy. Dust from both the flour and the wall is seen as the younger child collects the bread on the other side in a makeshift production line. The zero-shap... [more]

20150627052437-ayotzinapa_kites Francisco Toledo's Poster Biennial for Mexico's Missing Students   Pick-button-0f29c6c075c514ef3a12253f1d60018e
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Posted 6/27/15

One of art’s most powerful assets is that it can speak on behalf of the silenced; it can express what other media might not be allowed to state publicly; and above all, it can resonate beyond borders or limits. In September 2014, the entire world became witness to the disappearance of 43 students from Ayotzinapa, Guerrero, a small Mexican town not far from the Pacific Ocean. It was an atrocious act that was linked to the local government and law enforcers. Despite the fact that this event took over globa... [more]

20150626171525-20150619115758-working-it-out-logo Working (it) Out with Gillian Dykeman: Duke & Battersby   Pick-button-0f29c6c075c514ef3a12253f1d60018e
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Posted 6/26/15

Welcome to the fourth installation of the Artslant podcast series, Working (it) Out. My name is Gillian Dykeman, and I'm a visual artist living in Toronto, Ontario. This summer, I am interviewing artists to ask about the role of audience in their practice. Each interview will begin with one question: "Does art require an audience?" Working (it) Out with Gillian Dykeman Episode Four | Duke & Battersby: Empathy Symphony YES (2:18) Careerism and playing to an audience (5:00) Letter wr... [more]

20150624210837-zetteler_cass_markhandforth_twooldbananas_01-lr Sculpture Parks as Art Spaces: 6 of Europe's Best   Pick-button-0f29c6c075c514ef3a12253f1d60018e
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Posted 6/24/15

Are sculpture parks a thing of the past? Just like Disneyland for the art world, sculpture parks are popular tourist attractions often funded by billionaire art collectors (in the case of more than a few, they are couples with their own foundations). Have these types of elitist locations faded in recent years? And in the broader spectrum, what is their function as art spaces? While Europe has some of the coolest sculpture gardens (find a great list of international sculpture gardens here), t... [more]

20150621170014-iterative_places205-googlenet_4 Google's Psychedelic Art: This Is Your Computer Brain on Drugs   Pick-button-0f29c6c075c514ef3a12253f1d60018e
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Posted 6/21/15

Interpreting the patterns of light that reach our eyes is a very difficult problem, requiring about a third of our brains’ information processing capacity. When performed accurately, this process allows us to perceive many features of every object we see: their colors, shapes, identities, orientations, positions, and the spatial relationships between them. This happens so quickly and flawlessly that we don’t even notice it happen. In the past week, a set of trippy images revealed on... [more]

20150619090102-cms-image-004621650 Do Words Have Voices: Talking to Martin Boyce's Installations   Pick-button-0f29c6c075c514ef3a12253f1d60018e
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Martin Boyce at Museum für Gegenwartskunst April 25th - August 16th
Posted 6/19/15

Walking to the Museum Für Gegenwartkunst is, unavoidably and of itself, a romantic passage. Located just off the Rhine River, the experience of water is embedded into the ethos of building—both figuratively and practically within the architecture of the space—as viewable from the glass hallways between the museum’s galleries. The river, a fittingly meandering foil to the small path that leads to Martin Boyce’s current exhibition, offers an experience of aesthetisized n... [more]

20150619115758-working-it-out-logo Working (it) Out with Gillian Dykeman: Daniel Keller   Pick-button-0f29c6c075c514ef3a12253f1d60018e
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Posted 6/19/15

Welcome to the third installation of the Artslant podcast series, Working (it) Out. My name is Gillian Dykeman, and I'm a visual artist living in Toronto, Ontario. This summer, I am interviewing artists to ask about the role of audience in their practice. Each interview will begin with one question: "Does art require an audience?" Working (it) Out with Gillian Dykeman Episode Two | Daniel Keller: Party of Five "Good" art (2:15) Stacking stones and negentropy (4:00) Spirulina Spir... [more]

20150619081441-freckmann-en-govers-fremdhaus-300 Basel 2015 Trends: Irony Rules at the New Rhy Art Fair   Pick-button-0f29c6c075c514ef3a12253f1d60018e
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at Rhy Basel June 18th - June 21st
Posted 6/19/15

In the early hours of opening day at Rhypark, a gentle rain falls upon Basel. While the sun tries to break through the overcast clouds, the weather cannot squash the fact that the city is already illuminated by art and global attention. The Rhy Art Fair is the newest addition to the fair circuit, making its Basel debut this year. Presented by the Swiss organizer Contemporary Art International Zurich (founded in 1999 and now celebrating its 17th year) Rhy Art Fair showcases emerging talent in B... [more]

20150618103517-artbasel2015_meg_09_596 Why Crowdfunding Is the Most Art Basel Can Do in Terms of Social Responsibility   Pick-button-0f29c6c075c514ef3a12253f1d60018e
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Posted 6/18/15

When you walk onto Basel’s Messeplatz this week you can’t miss it: the temporary Gesamtkunstwerk with the rhetorical title Do We Dream Under The Same Sky. It consists of a bamboo structure designed by architects Nicholaus Hirsch and Michel Müller. Inside, chef Antto Melasniemi manages his personally designed solar kitchen, working with locally grown spices and herbs. Besides unusual fusion snacks such as fish ice cream and "bastard pad Thai," invented by Melasniemi and artist Rirkrit... [more]

20150618201602-contact_la-8 This Must Be the Place   Pick-button-0f29c6c075c514ef3a12253f1d60018e
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Posted 6/18/15

The art bar has an amorphous history, beginning perhaps with Cabaret Voltaire and reaching critical mass with those pilot program Starbucks that serve wine and put out incomplete chess sets after sunset. My own baptism into this genre of space was descending into the speakeasy underneath China Art Objects’ original Chung King Road location seven or eight years ago. Cramped, hot, definitely not up to code—nonetheless, I felt insanely glamorous, tucked into an odoriferous red-lit corner, s... [more]


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