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Char Jansen

20141210145432-20141210114145-tom__friedman What Is It About Tom Friedman's Up in the Air?   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Tom Friedman at Tel-Aviv Museum of Art November 17th - March 15th, 2015
Posted 12/10/14

900 sculptures of everyday objects that together comprise the work Up in the Air by Tom Friedman have arrived at the Tel Aviv Museum. Suspended from the museum's ceiling, pieces of chewing gum, miniature planes, sporting equipment, and fragments of fencing float alongside other recognizable tropes in Friedman's iconography such as crumpled boxes of cereal, cigarettes, FedEx, and big burgers, exploded into space. The piece debuted four years ago at Switzerland's Magasin III gallery last year. Its orbit now continues in Israel where it has recently been installed, and... [more]

20141209161400-dough_original_large2 Texture Trip: Surreal Substances in Art   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 12/8/14

Paint, in its ancient origins, was made from available materials: egg yolks to bind, sand, soil, plants, and so on for pigment. The whole process of manufacturing materials to make art has been steadily removed from the artistic process over time, but some artists still introduce the physical messiness of making art, by remolding everyday materials to provoke uncanny, humorous—and often, revolting—reactions to substance in the viewer. They might arouse strong responses, but they als... [more]

20141202231116-charlotte_justkids__copy Curator Charlotte Dutoit on Work, Travel, and How She'll Be Spending Her Time in Miami   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 12/2/14

Parisian-born, Puerto Rico-based Charlotte Dutoit is a jet set curator working with some of the hottest tipped new names in the large outdoor painting game worldwide: Brazil's Bicicleta Sem Freio, Alexis Diaz, and Borondo to name a few. In fact, their eye-catching projects are often the result of Dutoit's organizing. Recent productions have taken her to London, Las Vegas, Hawaii (she is a part of the family of the annual Pow!Wow! graffiti jam), and now she's checking out the action in Miami, whi... [more]

20141125104436-10612651_1547802092122323_1333046429617771951_n Street Art Reality Show or How the US Killed Another Subculture   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 11/25/14

"That's not real. Tell me that's not real. Is it?" "This is the worst thing I've ever seen :(" "FUCK THAT." "Whack." "Die." These were just some of the comments I received when I started to share a trailer that landed in my inbox for the first season of Street Art Throwdown, which premiers on Oxygen network on February 3, 2015. Trying to swallow down the small bit of vomit that rose in my throat as I watched the anninhilation of a culture, I realized it was only a matter of time; in fact,... [more]

20141125155521-screen_shot_2014-10-14_at_11 New London Exhibition to Showcase Contemporary Middle Eastern Satire   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 11/25/14

A group exhibition opening this week at EOA Projects London—a 400 square metre commercial space in London dedicated to Middle Eastern contemporary art—sees six artists from the region tackle some of the vital social questions for modern Middle Eastern culture, from repression and economy to surveillance and ideology. Crucially, the art here introduces a component that is often missing from much contemporary political art: humor. Curated by Amal Khalaf, the show reminds us of the importanc... [more]

20141120115553-10550917143_155ef67feb_b Post-Capitalist Hip Hop Videos: Our Absurd, Dystopian World   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 11/20/14

Hip Hop and capitalism could be said to share the same ideals. American Hip Hop and the American Dream promote the same goal of self-made material success through carefree consumerism. Money—and spending it—saturates songs and artist monikers (Curren$y, Rich Gang, 50 Cent, All$tar, etc.). Hip Hop’s aesthetic identity has traditionally communicated just as much about consumerist society as its songs. But as confidence in capitalism is waning, with the mass disillusionment followi... [more]

20141119111743-badger Five Minutes with Daniel K. Sparkes   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 11/19/14

Daniel K. Sparkes (a.k.a Mudwig in a previous incarnation) is a British artist whose offbeat approach has seen his work pop up in the most unusual spots all over the world, including Wroclaw, The Hague and Sheffield—alongside weighty venues such as Jonathan LeVine NY and Somerset House London (as part of upcoming Mapping the City). Sparke’s take on everyday life mixes surreal playfulness with humorous textuality: a "fur" print t-shirt was a recent eye-catcher. Thematically, he sets about the a... [more]

20141118135433-uae-graffiti Dubai to Set New Guinness Record with World's Longest Mural Painting  
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11/18/14

Dubai is set to become the home of the world's longest collaborative mural painting. The event, officially announced yesterday by Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Dubai Executive Council, is planned to cover 2,180 meters along the Sheikh Zayed Road, close to Jumeirah Beach Park. The mural—refered to in the PR as a graffiti scroll—will be realized by 100 established artists, including 70 known names from outside the UAE who have... [more]

20141224114918-unnamed-3 In Pictures: Rio's Baile Funk Culture   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 11/9/14

Baile Funk and Rio De Janeiro are inseperable kin; the unmistakable bassline sounds thump over the hillside favelas of the city, most of which have been pacified as part of a governmental iniative that began in 2008. From Rocinha to Cantagalo each Baile has its own particular flavor, an intense mix of sex, rhythm and hedonism. It's not just the unmistakable "Um Cha Cha Um Cha" that is an intergral part of Rio, but its ambience and aesthetics, that epitomize in many ways the Brazilian spirit. French photographer Vincent Rosenbl... [more]

20141022181632-united-kingdom-303323_640 Why Should London Get More Culture Money?   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 10/21/14

Last week, the Financial Times posted an article: "What Is Wrong With Inequality?" It highlighted the various effects of social unbalances in modern society through some recently published texts on this blazing hot topic. As urban citizens struggle against markets and unfair pay, and the 1 percent become wealthier, what happens to culture? "The equality of citizens is an ideal worth defending"—after all, as the FT concludes. Peter Stark, Christopher Gordon, and David Powell, three British a... [more]

20141008120656-g02348a01nf2008_trabajo Hardcore War Drawings by Goya Shown in the Middle East   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 10/8/14

Irena Gordon might be the most audacious curator in the Middle East—and it’s thanks to an exhibition of pro-peace artworks that are over a century old. In a daring and rare show of 70 etchings, aquatints and drypoints by the Spanish court painter Francisco Goya has opened at the Hermann Struk Museum, Israel. In the context of the modern day Middle East, Goya’s metaphors and allegories become not only relevant once again, but also subversive. Goya witnessed 19th century Spain during the Peninsular War, a... [more]

20141007154026-snake_and_dagger Ido Shemi: Instigator of the Israeli underground   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 10/7/14

Wherever Ido Shemi goes, underground culture seems to follow. When the artist was growing up in the serious shithole of Kibbutz Rosh Ha’Nikrah in the ‘70s, British volunteers would bring punk music on cassette tapes from the UK. These early encounters with subculture led Shemi to form his first band in 1980, The Dead Begins. After serving in the first Lebanon War, which ended in ’82, he felt—like many of his generation who lived through the war—that he had to get out o... [more]

20141007142911-10624774_284587495084991_6833694057363572954_n Hong Kong Protest Art: the Facebook group documenting activist artworks   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 10/7/14

Last week, as demonstrations in Hong Kong intensified with police and mafia clashes, Artnet reported on the ensuing panic at auction houses in the wake of the political situation. They questioned the possible impact on the art market given that the protests were strategically placed to paralyze some of HK’s most important business areas. This weekend, the Asia Contemporary Art Show took place as scheduled at the Conrad in Pacific Place, an area occupied by protestors. “We are please... [more]

20141006171218-prince_new_portraits_2014__976__install_14__1_ @richardprince4: Who are the other Richard Princes?   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 10/2/14

Update October 6, 2014: In a further twist to the RP4 tale, Instagram has started to dump previous images posted by the artist (including the ones we had linked to here, now obsolete). The reasons behind these mysterious recent movements on the (at the time of writing) still active account are unclear: a warning from the Instagram authorities? Or a classic Prince joke? In his latest post, two women are captured mid-conversation on a sofa. Above them hangs the infamous Untitled (Cowboy), the artist's first... [more]

Life in Miniature: An Interview with Slinkachu  
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9/29/14

London, Sept. 2014: Slinkachu’s captivating miniature street interventions, made of remodeled figures from train sets, strike a contrast with most other art in the public space. While many street and graffiti artists are all about bigger, louder, and bolder, the UK artist’s tiny, almost unnoticeable scenes are a quiet statement about our environment, and about the solitary nature of fast-paced city life – his ‘Little People’ are literally overwhelmed by the urban space. In... [more]

20140923062233-pez_15_years_acrylics_and_markers_on_canvas_87_x_57_x_5_cm__1400 PEZ: 15 Years Smiling with Friends   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 9/23/14

Legendary Spanish artist PEZ has just opened a solo show in London, at the Westbank Gallery W11, up until the 24th of this month. Following on from a solo gig earlier in the month in Sweden, Pez returns to London for the first time since his 2012 exhibition at Tony’s Gallery. The propagator of the “Funny Happy Barcelona style” – which in its basic form, is a smiling fish – presents new works on canvas, plus collaborative works with “friends” – amon... [more]

20140915194014-img_1699 Graffiti in Galleries: Why Do They Still Not Get It?   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 9/15/14

Last week the ASS editorial team was in Paris for our AGM, where we got a special tour of the LASCO project at the Palais De Tokyo. A very amiable and informative guide took us down the basement/security exit—normally closed to the public—that for the last two years has housed a new initiative to bring graffiti into the public gallery: two French artists, Lek and Sowat, have been inviting other artists from their scene to paint the walls of this cavernous underground maze. The proble... [more]

20140903155836-mirrorcity A London fall primer for everyone (but especially Internet lovers)   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 9/3/14

Autumn is high season for art and it’s an impossible task to keep up with the Smoke’s endless openings. Best to spread it out and try to see something of everything. The best exhibitions will kick off the season before Frieze takes over in October and demolishes everything artistic in its path. With this in mind, I’ve pulled together a little bit of this and a little bit of that—but basically, it’s all about the Internet. Best exhibition for British Art: MIRRORCITY, the Hayward Gallery ... [more]

20140902140614-pierre_huyghe_liegender_frauenakt__untilled_2011-2012___2012_installation_view__the_human_factor__hayward_gallery_2014__photo_linda_nylind Naked Ladies and More   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Pawel Althamer, Frank Benson, Huma Bhabha, Katharina Fritsch, Ryan Gander, Rachel Harrison, Georg Herold, Thomas Hirschhorn, Jeff Koons, Paul McCarthy, John Miller, Cady Noland, Ugo Rondinone, Thomas Schütte, Yinka Shonibare, Rebecca Warren, Paloma Varga Weisz, Andro Wekua, Cathy Wilkes at Hayward Gallery June 17th - September 7th
Posted 9/2/14

With the world reeling from recent global events that have severely impacted on our collective conscience—the barrage of scenes of manmade destruction, death, and disaster a vivid testimony of the dark side of humanity—visiting The Human Factor at Hayward Gallery was oddly cathartic. Of course, the curators were not prophets, but in bringing together twenty-five years of sculpture through twenty-five artists they have created a perspicacious and timely exhibition that reflects on som... [more]

20140819040908-photo_4 Weird guys with severed heads: an interview with PANG   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 8/19/14

Your background is in Fine Art – how have you developed your style back in London and how has it changed? I studied classical oil painting in Italy for four years and I came back to London around seven years ago. I have always moved around in my work and gone through phases, and Italy in a way felt like another artistic experiment, but the technique we learnt in the studio was from the 19th century, and the sheer discipline of it was a big shock when I first arrived. I had never spent mo... [more]

20140811153109-000016200001 The Sickboy Effect   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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SICKBOY at The Outsiders London July 25th - August 30th
Posted 8/11/14

Down a street off Soho Square a booze-soaked, rambunctious crowd piled out on the street. It was one of those rare summer evenings in London – somewhere between sweaty and balmy. Squeeze past the well-pruned bloggers, pogonophiles and the members of the banksy-forum cult, into the airless gallery, where the hundred-odd guests had impregnated the air with the scent of their sweaty-balmy bodies. This is the Sickboy effect – bringing a bit of griminess and a glaze of stickiness to mak... [more]

20140730173231-haring-by-alo ALO: Hail to the Loser, on now at Saatchi Gallery's Print Space   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Alo at Saatchi Gallery July 29th - August 18th
Posted 7/30/14

Opening this week is a 50-piece exhibition by Italian street artist Alo. Presented at the Saatchi’s gallery’s dedicated print space (a small, windowless room on the lower ground floor), the show is packed with all-new works, mostly originals on found wood – a significant undertaking for an emerging artist working solo – though piled up their individual effect becomes diluted by repetition. Auto-didact Alo came to East London’s fertile streets a few years ago leavin... [more]

20140713043807-thumb RexRomae at Scoop London, 13th – 15th July 2014   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 7/13/14

If you ever needed proof that street art is in vogue – this is it. Scoop London presents a group exhibition featuring work by Alexis Diaz, Askew, Borondo, Bicicleta Sem Freio, 2501, Vinz, Agostino Iacurci, Jaz, Martin Whatson and Fintan Magee. The 12-strong show opens for just two days (13 to 15th July) as part of fashion trade show Scoop, held at the Philips Gallery and Saatchi Gallery space at Howick Place, in chichi Southwest London. Directed by Rom Levy and curated by Charlotte Duto... [more]

20140703062650-la_4 Bike Without Brakes: Interview with Brazilian trio Bicicleta Sem Freio   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 7/3/14

Brazilian trio Bicicleta Sem Freio describe themselves as a design and illusration collective, and hail from a small town in the centre of Brazil, but recently they’ve caught the eye of international audiences since their work was selected by Charlotte Dutoit (curator JustKids and Pow Wow Hawaii) and they have branched out into painting walls too – hitting up London’s East London for the first time. Only their second ever mural is now reported to be the largest of its kind in... [more]

20140702171126-punk_memories__escape_9__by_john_bagnall__c__john_bagnall Comics Unmasked: Art and Anarchy in the UK   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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at The British Library July 1st - August 19th
Posted 7/2/14

High hopes for this seductively titled show: a subject that is rarely examined in depth in a museum context, with all the resources at their disposition. Added to this was the idea of discovering some of the British Library’s comprehensive archive at the UK’s biggest ever exhibition of comics. This was going to be fun. The thing that this show does well is to highlight how key the role of comics has been in propagating political change. Presenting comics from the late Victorian era... [more]

20140627175109-bigpicture Larry Clark Photograph Sale   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Larry Clark at Simon Lee July 1st - July 6th
Posted 7/2/14

Oh London. With your unending ability to hype a party in a shoebox into the event of the summer. If you’ve lived in London for any amount of time, you’ll have to develop a discerning eye for what’s genuinely meritorious of hype, and what’s just flotsam. From today until Saturday, epic photographer and filmmaker Larry Clark, aged 71, is unloading some of his life’s detritus, and will be selling off original photographic prints from his humungous archive of work, out of crat... [more]

20140702062816-image TACO TRICYCLE TIMBUKTU   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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John Atherton, Hin, BOB MOTOWN at Stour Space July 3rd - August 4th
Posted 7/2/14

From the pleasing alliteration of this trichotomous show at Hackney Wick’s canalside arts space you might surmise the infantile irreverance these artists share for the art world etc and reading the somewhat silly press release you’ll be not much wiser as to what the exhibition is about. Taking animals and absurdity as shared visual motifs, the London-based trio work in illustration and graphic design, but for their first collaboration on an exhibition, the emphasis is on screen prin... [more]

20140607070735-wolf Print Release Only til Sunday! Here's our Q & A with Mysterious Al   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Posted 6/7/14

Hello Al, how’s life in Australia? I've been living in Melbourne for nearly 3 years now and it's great. There's no frost and it doesn't snow. People are nice here and the coffee is next level. Anything you miss about British culture? Well, my sarcasm doesn't work so well here. Mysetrious Al, Leaf Girl; Courtesy of the artist You had a show in Melbourne recently – how did that go? The Melbourne show was awesome as it was a great opportunity for me to show new work that I'd made... [more]

20140524163545-15folds-superstition-kim_asendorf-new EVERYTHING ALL AT ONCE: GIF Art on View Now from 15folds Collective   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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at Lyst Studios April 1st - May 29th
Posted 5/24/14

15Folds, an online GIF platform founded by a well-connected 20-something London trio (who dressed in matching ‘Nostalgia is Bullshit’ tshirts for the opening) have just unveiled their first I.R.L exhibition: animated GIF art at the former White Cube gallery space in East London’s Hoxton Square. Using custom-made augmented reality, visitors can use their phones and tablets to view the artworks, via a site-specific app. The GIFs have been created by 20 contemporary creatives wo... [more]

20140513063821-capture_d_e_cran_2014-05-03_a__18 Event Spotlight: Pathetic Bubble, Horfée and Russell Maurice   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Horfée and Russell Maurice at Doomsday May 8th - June 13th
Posted 5/13/14

I don’t know too much about Australia’s art scene first hand, since I haven’t been there since 1990, and then aged 5, I only remember my sister throwing up out of the car window as we drove past the Sydney Opera House. But as for cultural activities of the kind we’re inclined to cover over here, Melbourne is frequently popping up as Australia’s main spot. Stepping up to the level of other world cities by bringing some of the best artists in this field to present the... [more]

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