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20141023110153-tree What Does Paris' Deflated Butt Plug Say About Art?   Pick-button-0f29c6c075c514ef3a12253f1d60018e
at FIAC October 23rd, 2014 - October 26th, 2014
Posted 10/23/14

Is it possible that there is someone out there, in the admittedly rather narrow demographic of folk who read this and other art related material, who hasn’t heard of Paul McCarthy’s forceful insertion of a thirty foot high inflatable replica Butt Plug into one of Paris’ most desirable addresses? And yes, in case you were wondering, there is a fair chance that this puerile level of double entendre will continue throughout. If nothing else it gives me, the humble writer, a chance to pa... [more]

20141023122002-patti_smith_performing_in_finland__2007 Why Patti Loves Paris and Paris Loves Patti   Pick-button-0f29c6c075c514ef3a12253f1d60018e
Posted 10/23/14

Patti loves Paris and Paris loves Patti, and the question that I’d ask is why? Now right at the beginning, up front, I need to make a few things clear. First, let me state that this relates to our FIAC coverage because Patti is performing at the most sought after, and possibly the only gig to feature as part of the FIAC programme. It's a reunion with John Cale, on Thursday night, at Fondation Cartier. Since this hardly seems sufficient to qualify my bold assertion I’ll also add tha... [more]

20140921181645-98874124_o Niki de Saint Phalle: Are her Nanas Too Sexy?   Pick-button-0f29c6c075c514ef3a12253f1d60018e
Niki de Saint Phalle at Grand Palais September 17th, 2014 - February 2nd
Posted 9/21/14

It really is a crying shame that Niki de Saint Phalle wasn’t crooked of back, thick of brow, dull eyed with pustulant skin, lank hair, an uneven gait, and a voice that sounded like a hoarse crow hacking its lungs up. At a push I’d even settle for poor and dull witted, but she wasn’t; she was pretty and rich and aristocratic. Now, there is nothing wrong with this—she wasn’t the first and she won’t be the last artist to come from this milieu—but there is... [more]

20140828081538-photo_2_-_1986-paris_4199 Simple Pleasures   Pick-button-0f29c6c075c514ef3a12253f1d60018e
Daniel Buren at Palais Royal August 1st, 1986 - December 31st, 2024
Posted 8/28/14

Given that we are in the zombie month of August when most galleries are closed, your faithful correspondent decided that it was time to go and check out some permanent public art: Daniel Buren’s 1986 installation Les Deux Plateau, apparently more commonly known as Colonnes de Buren. I’m assuming that for such a worldly audience as ArtSlant’s, these titles need no translation. But what is it? Well, it’s a grid of 260 candy-stripped columns, in a grid of candy-stripped li... [more]

20140708121829-file1 Getting It   Pick-button-0f29c6c075c514ef3a12253f1d60018e
Colin Snapp at Galerie Allen June 27th, 2014 - July 27th, 2014
Posted 7/7/14

Galerie Allen is a run by the Australian team of independent curator Joseph Allen Shea and artist Mel O'Callaghan, and is situated just west of Gare du Nord, in the tentatively gentrifying ninth arrondissement. These things are a departure from standard Paris format; they’ve eschewed the Marais, the (admittedly awful) left bank, and the more obvious cluster of new galleries centered in Belleville. Plus, there’s the involvement of an artist. The space itself is also something of a hybrid; t... [more]

20140630071806-katyhorna_ii_60 Displacements: the real and surreal photographs of Kati Horna   Pick-button-0f29c6c075c514ef3a12253f1d60018e
Kati Horna at Jeu de Paume June 3rd, 2014 - September 21st, 2014
Posted 6/30/14

Despite being at the forefront of documentary photography during the Spanish Civil War in the 1930s and the Mexican Surrealist movement of the 1940s, Hungarian-born Kati Horna (née Deutsch) has remained relatively unknown outside of her adopted country of Mexico. Yet the art world has an ever-growing appetite for unearthing overlooked or forgotten perspectives that wind alongside the dominant Western masculine narratives of the twentieth century, and Horna is a perfect candidate. The focus... [more]

20140604044235-her-curves-2 The Elusive Identities and Feminine Mystique of Olga Balema's Sculptures   Pick-button-0f29c6c075c514ef3a12253f1d60018e
Olga Balema at High Art May 15th, 2014 - June 14th, 2014
Posted 6/4/14

“There was something factitious and brittle and thereby utterly feminine about her charm which made me want to crush her, even to crunch her. She had a slight cast in one eye which gives her gaze a strange concentrated intensity. Her eyes sparkle, almost as if they were actually emitting sparks. She is electric. And she could run faster in very high-heeled shoes than any girl I ever met.” These words, written by Iris Murdoch in her seminal novel The Sea, The Sea (1978) fit perfectly with the... [more]

20140519064350-hirschhorn8 Watch DVDs, Eat Hot Dogs, and Swing on Tires   Pick-button-0f29c6c075c514ef3a12253f1d60018e
Thomas Hirschhorn at Palais de Tokyo April 24th, 2014 - June 23rd, 2014
Posted 5/19/14

To enter this exhibition is to descend into an anarchic post-apocalyptic maze where mankind has come to rely on parcel tape as never before and small children run around like fuzzy static magnets for polystyrene debris. Yes, we are entering the world of Thomas Hirschhorn on a quite unprecedented scale, and as ever the Swiss artist presents us with an immersive vision. This is an exhibition where you can spend time, and after contemplating disruptions in doxical praxis you can watch DVDs, eat... [more]

20140421080747-rm4 Mapplethorpe: Very Eighties   Pick-button-0f29c6c075c514ef3a12253f1d60018e
Robert Mapplethorpe at Grand Palais March 26th, 2014 - July 13th, 2014
Posted 4/21/14

At a certain point as I was walking around the Mapplethorpe exhibition I thought, “You know something? I really don’t like Robert Mapplethorpe.” This was during the first half of the show where most of the work was in his "nude portraiture" mode. I mean, I can appreciate the formality of it all—the lines and triangles, neat, original compositions, the sculptural references. But there’s just something in the gelatin-silver-shininess of it; it all seems too slick, t... [more]

20140409104754-mp_06 Pernot’s Nomads   Pick-button-0f29c6c075c514ef3a12253f1d60018e
Mathieu Pernot at Jeu de Paume February 11th, 2014 - May 18th, 2014
Posted 4/9/14

Mathieu Pernot’s new show at Jeu de Paume follows twenty years of his career but it also follows the tragic downhill path some of modern society's marginal groups have taken since the twentieth century. While examining the nation state's mechanisms of supervision, control, and depression he also lingers on the historical role of photography as a collaborative practice. The curatorial orbit of his exhibition The Crossing was designed to create both spacious and conceptual "vis-à-vis" encounters betw... [more]

20140312061209-sheila_hicks Into The Fold   Pick-button-0f29c6c075c514ef3a12253f1d60018e
Tauba Auerbach, davide balula, Alain Biltereyst, Tom Burr, César, John Chamberlain, William Daniels, Simon Hantai, Sheila Hicks, Olaf Holzapfel, Sol LeWitt, Piero Manzoni, Steven Parrino, Jack Pierson, Diogo Pimentão, Charlotte Posenenske, Robert Rauschenberg, Blake Rayne, Anselm Reyle, Dorothea Rockburne, Rudolf Stingel, Tatiana Trouvé, Daniel Turner, Rachel Whiteread at Gagosian - Paris February 28th, 2014 - April 19th, 2014
Posted 3/12/14

I don’t know if anyone else has seen the YouTube animation that explains the ten dimensions of the physical world, as predicted by the theoretical framework of M- or String theory. It’s quite confusing. However, one of the ideas it introduces is that at certain points the shift from one dimension to the next is achieved by folding that dimension through into the next (in similar fashion to how one would fold a piece of paper into a Mobius strip). This is the process that allows a being t... [more]

20140220170301-now_130x130_cm_acrylique_sur_toile_2014 The Power of the Word: Stohead at Galerie Le Feuvre   Pick-button-0f29c6c075c514ef3a12253f1d60018e
Stohead at Galerie Le Feuvre March 20th, 2014 - April 12th, 2014
Posted 2/20/14

I'm a sucker for densely layered calligraphy: Stohead's canvas Beyond the Clouds, for instance, with its stark silver letters, dripping and cascading over a black background only to transform into the wisps of a cloud hovering over blue sky. Those watery wisps allude to the technique he's developed for his other works, where paint appears like droplets of dye plunging into clear water, dissolving and dissipating in a cloud of color above. Words float, partially obscured in the cloud, as though released... [more]

20140212055802-0 The Weird and Wonderful World of Jean Cocteau   Pick-button-0f29c6c075c514ef3a12253f1d60018e
Jean Cocteau at LA CINÉMATHÈQUE FRANÇAISE - Musée du cinéma February 12th, 2014 - February 23rd, 2014
Posted 2/12/14

To commemorate the 50th anniversary of his death, La Cinématheque Française is holding a retrospective of Jean Cocteau's cinematographic work, exploring the enormous impact of the works and life of this preeminent figure both retrospectively and today. Cocteau was a keen advocate of the Seventh Art, and played a huge role in establishing the prestige of the Cannes Film Festival. Upon his death, Cocteau donated the proportion of his filmography collection to Henri Langlois, a co-founder of t... [more]

20140122074625-tower1 Effortlessness, It’s Never Easy if You Try   Pick-button-0f29c6c075c514ef3a12253f1d60018e
Posted 1/21/14

Seeking to postpone stock experiences and squeeze them all into our few days together, I avoided visiting the Tower until my mother arrived. We didn’t eat macarons at Ladurée, we didn’t get hot chocolate at Café de Flore, we didn’t jostle for selfies with La Joconde, but we went to the Tower. The visit itself is a symbolic gesture, because the symbol literally haunts no matter where you are in the world. Those curving lines, stretching skyward like a bit of pinched... [more]

20140121182108-ac_jamie_reid_affiche_god_save_the_queen_1977_-__sex_pistols_residuals Punk is Dead (again)   Pick-button-0f29c6c075c514ef3a12253f1d60018e
at Cité de la musique October 15th, 2013 - January 19th, 2014
Posted 1/21/14

"Yes that's right punk is dead, it's just another cheap product for the consumer’s head Bubble gum rock on plastic transistors, school boy sedition backed by big time promoters" So sang Crass in their 1978 track Punk is Dead... And the big time promoter in this instance is the French state via Cité de la Musique, where, from a certain perspective, Punk suffers the final ignominy of transferring from cultural reference or product for sale to vitrine protected cultural artefact t... [more]

20131229193708-au_bistrot__ca Ode to Paris   Pick-button-0f29c6c075c514ef3a12253f1d60018e
Brassaï at Hôtel de Ville November 8th, 2013 - March 8th, 2014
Posted 12/29/13

Hôtel de Ville is the proud host of a retrospective exhibition of Brassaï’s photography of his beloved Paris. The native Hungarian, Gyula Halasz, worked under the pseudonym ‘Brassaï’, (referring to his hometown Brassó). Brassaï moved to Paris in 1924 and never returned to his home country. From 1925 he was socialising with the likes of Eugène Atget, André Breton and Salvador Dalí amongst others, and in 1949 he was granted French natio... [more]

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