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James Cahill

20120331093249-1 Gilbert & George   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Gilbert & George at White Cube, Bermondsey March 9th, 2012 - May 12th, 2012
Posted 3/31/12

For several years, Gilbert & George have been stealing Evening Standard posters from newsagents – one of them distracting the shopkeeper by buying a Mars bar while the other unfastens the headline of the day. They have carefully sifted and categorised 3,712 of these to create the LONDON PICTURES, their most extensive series to date, which is simultaneously on display at all three London galleries of White Cube. Expansive in size and number, the works unfold a deadpan lexicon of urban life. In eac... [more]

20111208235354-01_david_shrigley David Shrigley: Brain Activity – The Boy Who Never Grows Up   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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David Shrigley at Hayward Gallery February 1st, 2012 - May 13th, 2012
Posted 2/13/12

A note of unreality prevails at David Shrigley's major exhibition "Brain Activity". His sculptures, which dominate this expansive survey of his work, are essentially three-dimensional realisations of the offbeat drawings for which he is best known. Assembled in this way, they begin to suggest what a comic strip brought to life would look like. Ostrich (2009), a stuffed ostrich with its head surreally lopped-off, gives the impression of a magnified cartoon. Very Large Cup of Tea (2012) combines litres... [more]

20120126075056-untitled0 Boris Mikhailov; Triptychs: Blithe Play or Calculated Idiocy?   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Boris Mikhailov at Sprovieri February 9th, 2012 - March 31st, 2012
Posted 2/13/12

Over a fifty-year career, Boris Mikhailov has created a photographic Theatre of the Absurd. Its many acts provide a tragicomic view of his native Ukraine before and after the fall of the Soviet Union. Sprovieri's extensive new exhibition of Mikhailov’s work draws upon ten photographic series from the 1960s to 2008. The works are arranged in triptychs, an arrangement that perfectly befits Mikhailov’s painterly sense of composition, in a nod to grand, classical altarpieces. This is manifested in his o... [more]

20101228075614-gg James Cahill's 4 Art Highlights of 2011   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Gilbert & George at White Cube, Mason's Yard January 14th, 2011 - February 19th, 2011
Posted 12/25/11

The mistletoe may still be up and the mulled wine chilling in the pot, however the holidays are not over since the new year is just around the corner. What may be more fitting then: a recap of the year with James Cahill's pick of London's 4 Art Highlights of 2011. 1. Gilbert and George: Urethra Postcard Art at White Cube The Urethra Postcard Art of Gilbert & George was a hilarious and duly provocative reprisal of the duo’s ‘postcard art’. In 155 framed collages, multiple copies of a postcard were arranged in the same rectangul... [more]

20110928085725-18_george_condo_0 George Condo at Hayward Gallery   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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George Condo at Hayward Gallery October 18th, 2011 - January 8th, 2012
Posted 12/4/11

George Condo’s retrospective Mental States creates the impression of a museum of surreally metamorphosed portraits. It is underscored throughout by a note of oddball humour which is at odds with the austerity of the other big exhibitions of paintings which have taken place this year (chief among them Gerhard Richter’s major exhibition at Tate Modern).Mental States opens with a row of gilded bronze busts with titles such as The Alcoholic or – paying more lip service to artistic tradition -- The Ol... [more]

20110919224347-36414crop Rachel Howard at Blain Southern   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Rachel Howard at Blain|Southern London Hill Street October 12th, 2011 - December 22nd, 2011
Posted 12/4/11

Folie à deux describes the psychiatric syndrome in which two people enter a shared delusion, or more colloquially, the playacted ‘game’ often formulated privately by couples. But delusions or secret flights of fancy are not what spring to mind in the face of Rachel Howard’s disconcerting new works at Blain Southern. Executed in her characteristic combination of household gloss paint, acrylic and oil, the works are closer in mood to her bleak and oblique Suicide Paintings from 2007, in which sketch... [more]

20110919233830-2011_md_thumb Marlene Dumas at Frith Street Gallery   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Marlene Dumas at Frith Street Gallery October 14th, 2011 - November 26th, 2011
Posted 10/30/11

Marlene Dumas’s first show in London for seven years is dominated by five large paintings of the Crucifixion. The show draws its title from the despairing utterance of the dying Christ, “My God, my God, why has thou forsaken me?” Dumas aligns herself with several major artists from recent decades – Picasso, Bacon, Sutherland et al – who have addressed the Crucifixion as both an art-historical trope and a human spectre of violence and suffering. In each painting, Dumas seems to hover between litera... [more]

20111030120715-201110071607169853 Abraham Cruzvillegas at Modern Art Oxford   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Abraham Cruzvillegas at Modern Art Oxford October 30th, 2011 - November 20th, 2011
Posted 10/30/11

Abraham Cruzvillegas’s exhibition at Modern Art Oxford comprises a new body of work made in specific response to the history of Oxford. It draws upon his long-standing project Autoconstruccion, a body of work inspired by the improvisatory architecture of his childhood home in Pedregales de Coyoacán, Mexico City. Cruzvillegas is a key figure in the ‘new wave’ generation of Mexican artists who emerged in the 1990s under the tutelage of Gabriel Orozco. Here and throughout his career, he draws a par... [more]

20110925094802-moonbeam Raqib Shaw at White Cube   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Raqib Shaw at White Cube, Mason's Yard September 28th, 2011 - November 12th, 2011
Posted 10/3/11

Titled Paradise Lost, Raqib Shaw’s exhibition of new sculptures and paintings of preternatural landscapes ostensibly has little to do with the Fall of Man. Shaw’s works firmly inhabit the realms of animal-populated fantasy; in the upstairs gallery, two polychrome dioramas face one another, each depicting an oversize swan perching on top of a circular well of gleaming oil strewn with gaudy lotuses and lilies. Each swan is tugging a grisly ribbon of flesh from the chest of a lolling figure caught bet... [more]

20110905081006-sala-3 Anri Sala at Serpentine   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Anri Sala at Serpentine Gallery October 1st, 2011 - November 20th, 2011
Posted 10/3/11

Albanian artist Anri Sala’s solo show at the Serpentine Gallery takes the form of a loop of interrelated videos and sculptures. Visitors are lured through the dimmed spaces by a pervasive soundtrack which overlays the music emanating from the different videos with live saxophone improvisations and a cacophonous orchestral recording.The opening room contains a solitary snare drum with a pair of drumsticks resting on it. An attendant is on hand to explain that the drum intermittently plays itself... [more]

20110905100444-moe_exh4_splash Museum of Everything at Selfridges   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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at The Museum of Everything September 2nd, 2011 - October 26th, 2011
Posted 9/5/11

The Museum of Everything, inaugurated in 2009 as a pop-up showcase for "outsider art," has left its usual home in Camden to occupy a specially-created grotto at the heart of Selfridges on Oxford Street. The shop windows are filled with prints and ephemera relating to the show. Inside, over 200 drawings, paintings and objects have been packed into a hotchpotch of low-lit rooms.Exhibition #4 surveys works from studios around the world for people with developmental impairments (videos of some of them at wor... [more]

20110719043358-barlo46641lr-r64h9u Phyllida Barlow at Hauser & Wirth   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Phyllida Barlow at Hauser & Wirth London September 2nd, 2011 - October 22nd, 2011
Posted 9/5/11

Phyllida Barlow has emerged in recent years from the comparative obscurity of a four-decade teaching career at the Slade to be enshrined as one of Britain’s most prominent sculptors. Her debut show with Hauser & Wirth features a series of hefty abstract assemblages in lowly media such as cement, fabric, plywood and timber. Her sculptures are repetitive, cumbersome, yet gently compelling objects which swell to fill the modestly proportioned spaces of Edwin Lutyens’ Midland Bank building, from the... [more]

20110826221559-davidbatchelor1232432213 David Batchelor at Karsten Schubert   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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David Batchelor at Karsten Schubert Gallery August 8th, 2011 - September 30th, 2011
Posted 8/26/11

David Batchelor’s first show of paintings at Karsten Schubert re-animates the cliché of "watching paint dry" through a series of bold and seductive new works in gloss paint on aluminium.Each painting presents a monochrome, amorphous orb poised on top of a matte black rectangle, surrounded by the raw aluminium support. Within this repeated formula, which occurs in earlier drawings and which formed the basis of Batchelor’s drawings show Chromophilia in Rio de Janeiro last year, the works vary in size... [more]

20110801085707-d8ac565537108f70_thomas-struth-photographs-1978-2010 Thomas Struth at Whitechapel   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Thomas Struth at Whitechapel Gallery July 6th, 2011 - September 16th, 2011
Posted 8/26/11

In his 1939 essay Not Looking at Pictures, EM Forster proposes that, “Pictures are not easy to look at. They generate private fantasies… in galleries so many of us go off into a laugh or a sigh or an amorous day-dream.” His observations might well have been made in response to the two photographs at the beginning of Thomas Struth’s retrospective at the Whitechapel Gallery. Drawn from the artist’s celebrated series of "museum photographs", the works show crowds of tourists staring up at Michelangel... [more]

20110706103355-large_l1092 BP Portrait Award 2011   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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at National Portrait Gallery June 16th, 2011 - September 18th, 2011
Posted 7/31/11

The 32nd annual Portrait Award at the National Portrait Gallery (and the 22nd sponsored by BP) surveys an eclectic and unpredictable range of subjects, from cultural icons such as Boy George or saxophonist Courtney Pine to unknown or anonymous figures, such as a female prisoner in orange jumpsuit, or a woman tethered to rocks in the style of a mythological heroine re-imagined in the nineteenth century. This year’s prize has gone further than in previous years to foreground the formal and thematic rang... [more]

20110715104852-1 Jake or Dinos Chapman   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Jake and Dinos Chapman at White Cube, Hoxton Square July 15th, 2011 - September 17th, 2011
Posted 7/31/11

"Jake or Dinos Chapman" is the result of a year spent by the Chapman brothers working in isolation from one another. As the “or” of the title implies, it is unclear – and perhaps irrelevant – which artist has produced which works. Moreover, the authorial split suggested by the exhibition’s title and by its spanning of both White Cube’s galleries (in Mason’s Yard and Hoxton Square), is belied by the polyreferential, "articulated" corpus of work on show. The upstairs gallery at Mason’s Yard hous... [more]

20110517065101-3b91a5dd3d61d951d3e82df9004d0efc4ae8092b The Minimal Gesture at Timothy Taylor   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Markus Amm, Hans Hartung, Jonathan Lasker, Agnes Martin, Peter Peri, Robert Ryman, Sean Scully, Rudolf Stingel, Terry Winters, Christopher Wool at Timothy Taylor Gallery June 4th, 2011 - August 20th, 2011
Posted 6/26/11

  The Minimal Gesture analyses the continuing influence of Abstract Expressionism in contemporary painting, and its intersection with the major movements that followed that period, in particular Minimalism. A large canvas by Agnes Martin, who considered herself an Abstract Expressionist – although her work is closely aligned with Minimalism – consists of faint, hand-ruled graphite lines on an off-white background. The composition is radically pared down, yet full of a sense of imperfection... [more]

20110612115525-ededb3c6 Cecily Brown at Gagosian Davies Street   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Cecily Brown at Gagosian Gallery - Davies Street June 8th, 2011 - July 29th, 2011
Posted 6/26/11

Cecily Brown’s show at Gagosian comes as a surprise from an artist famous for big canvases (and distended prices to match). Her latest works are small in size and number, and their formal range narrow almost to the point of repetitiveness. This restrained exhibition centres on one main triptych – a busy, bristling mass of vaguely organic forms (foliage or flesh) which initially calls to mind the slick distortions of James Rosenquist, as well as the biomorphic abstractions of Arshile Gorky. The pain... [more]

20110529061840-installation_view__matthew_day_jackson__study_collection_vii__2011__hauser___wirth__savile_row Everything Leads to Another   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Matthew Day Jackson at Hauser & Wirth (Savile Row) May 20th, 2011 - July 30th, 2011
Posted 5/29/11

Hauser & Wirth have hit upon an artist whose ambition and productivity are more than a match for their gargantuan galleries. With a dizzying array of sculptures, photographs, and assemblages, Jackson epitomises the propensity for the big, the grandiloquent, and the epic that is discernable in many American writers and artists of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, from Norman Mailer to Matthew Barney.The centrepiece of the show is a reconditioned B29 cockpit titled Axis Mundi. Maroon... [more]

20110503043842-gb Between Eagles and Pioneers   Pick-button-5bf6c1b36c3b74ec8f312c7c9f6f1ae3
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Georg Baselitz at White Cube, Mason's Yard May 20th, 2011 - July 9th, 2011
Posted 5/29/11

Georg Baselitz’s first exhibition at White Cube in 2009 featured a series of expressionistic paintings of Lenin and Stalin, summoning up the political history of his native East Germany in the Soviet era. In his second show at the gallery, Between Eagles and Pioneers, history again filters into his paintings albeit through more ambiguous motifs – anonymous double portraits, dogs, and eagles. Painted characteristically upside down, the works present a mundus inversus in which our eye gravitates... [more]

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