James Loks

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Prix Marcel Duchamp: Favourites and Outsiders   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
Farah Atassi, Latifa Echakhch, Claire Fontaine, Raphaël Zarka at FIAC October 26th, 2013 11:30 AM - 1:00 PM
Posted 10/22/13
As a corollary to FIAC the Prix Marcel Duchamp has had some pretty impressive winners in its time and is, as with all of these types of prizes, a great way for an artist to get some recognition, funding and actual cash. Not as old as the Swiss Art Awards, as prestigious as a Gold or Silver Lion, or as lucrative as some of the big private awards, it is still sufficient to spur on the career of any artist, not least in that it comes with a well funded exhibition at the Pompidou, and allows you to... [more]
On the eve of FIAC I managed to catch Marianne Paul-Boncour for a chat in what was probably the loudest workers cafe in eastern Paris. We struggled to be heard over the radio, the rattling of cups and glasses and the shrillest of barmaids, while simultaneously squinting into a setting sun. Despite these challenges we managed to talk about painting, New York City, France and FIAC. James Loks: Can you describe your work in brief? Marianne Paul-Boncour: I always come at things from two... [more]
Digital Disappointment   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
GRÉGORY CHATONSKY, DuroSport Electronics, Benjamin Gaulon aka Recyclism, Jonathan Puckey (Moniker), Do it yourself book scanner (Daniel Reetz), Julian Oliver et Danja Vasiliev at Jeu de Paume October 23rd, 2012 - March 11th, 2014
Posted 9/3/13
I guess the title kind of gives it away? But you know, you've got to have expectations to be disappointed and here's the problem: when you put together the two words 'online' and 'exhibition' you can imagine wandering through this vast and surprising digital world where new and previously unimagined forms of artistic stimulation are assailing your senses from every quarter; or you can see the two antithetical things, an exhibition being that immersive, fully realised, interactive, texturally... [more]
59 Rivoli- Squart Collective[1]59 Rue de RivoliParisOngoing   Number 59 Rivoli was abandoned for fifteen years before it was squatted by a group of artists in 1999. After a couple of years of wrangling and campaigning the building was bought by the municipal government of Paris[2], renovated to make it safe, and passed over to the collective, who had now formalised their existence under the name '59 Rivoli'. I visited it as it seems to be an example of the kind of progressive attitude to... [more]
No Temple BS   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
Bert Stern at La Galerie de l'Instant July 11th, 2013 - September 25th, 2013
Posted 7/23/13
This is a terrible show and I loved it. By any of the criteria by which most of the galleries I normally visit judge themselves it was, what, I don't know what to say, a joke? A disaster? A farce? As appears to be my normal approach I'm going to talk about two things, the gallery first, then I'll get on to the artist… The gallery was a mess! There was Bert Stern's work on the walls, with one or two other random photos thrown in, as well as lots of other pictures from other photographers... [more]
A very very big show in a relatively small room   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
Lewis Baltz, Uta Barth, Lothar Baumgarten, Walead Beshty, Lucas Blalock, Mark Borthwick, Josh Brand, Jean-Marc Bustamante, Talia Chetrit, Anne Collier, Sarah Conaway, Luc Delahaye, Thomas Demand, Liz Deschenes, Rineke Dijkstra, Saul Fletcher, Lee Friedlander, Amy Granat, John Houck, Barbara Kasten, Annette Kelm, Josh Kolbo, Luisa Lambri, Elad Lassry, Leigh Ledare, Tim Lee, Jochen Lempert, Hanna Liden, Armin Linke, Sharon Lockhart, Jean-Luc Moulène, Catherine Opie, Eileen Quinlain, Alison Rossiter, Melanie Schiff, Collier Schorr, Bruno Serralongue, Shirana Shahbazi, Erin Shirreff, Stephen Shore, Alec Soth, Thomas Struth, Jeff Wall, James Welling, Chris Wiley at Galerie Marian Goodman - Paris June 28th, 2013 - August 2nd, 2013
Posted 7/9/13
I've become increasingly aware of how people find negative reviews so much more entertaining than positive reviews, and so I'm about to let everyone down. This is a really great show, and an unusual one, and interesting for lots of different reasons; but really one main one. It's also worth saying that the title/name of the exhibition really is fitting for the experience of seeing the show. The big main thing to say is it's a curated show, although Jens Hoffmann prefers the tag 'exhibition... [more]
Frieze New York: Literature and Art Fairs   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
Lydia Davis at Frieze New York May 11th, 2013 4:00 PM - 6:00 PM
Posted 5/7/13
The art fair as cultural event is pretty well established now. It makes sense to use the pretext of the weird art supermarket that forms the body of the fair as an excuse for a wider programme; it adds interest and tempers the slightly distasteful frenzy that makes it so difficult to actually see the art everyone's here for. As part of this year's Frieze New York we have the opportunity to attend a reading and Q&A session with Lydia Davis. For those of you who aren't familiar with her, as... [more]
It's in a gallery but you can't have everything   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
Joan Jonas at Galerie Yvon Lambert April 27th, 2013 - May 30th, 2013
Posted 5/2/13
Similarity and difference seems to be the theme of the current exhibition at Yvon Lambert. In one room we have Joan Jonas, presenting a video installation Reanimation II, a reworking of a piece originally shown at dOCUMENTA (13), and in the other we have a wall piece by Lawrence Weiner. The similarities are that both artists are very well respected (although Jonas isn't celebrated quite as much as Weiner), both came to prominence in the sixties and have something like a forty-year body of work,... [more]
Tumbling Blocks / Stumbling Blocks   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
Victor Costales, Julia Rometti at Jousse Entreprise-Saint Claude April 6th, 2013 - May 18th, 2013
Posted 4/17/13
As is my way, I didn't do any research on Julia Rometti and Victor Costales before I went to see the show. I knew that they'd won a prize at the last edition of ARCO Madrid (the illy SustainArt prize) and I knew they were young and pretty successful. That was it. I'm also a fan of Jousse Entreprise as a gallery; they're definitely one of the most interesting smaller galleries in Paris and they represent a few artists of whom I'm a fan (Superflex, Matthew Derbyshire, and Philippe Meste if you... [more]
Hypnosis   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
Julio Le Parc at Palais de Tokyo February 25th, 2013 - May 13th, 2013
Posted 2/27/13
There's part of this job that involves trying to use words to conjure the experience of an artwork or an exhibition for the reader. From the second I entered this show I realised that with the work of Julio le Parc – no chance. There's no way that I can tell you even a fraction of what the experience of being in this show is like. Not least because just finding your way through the first immersive sculpture – a small fully mirrored room full of tightly packed full length hanging mirrors that... [more]
A Negative Review   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
CHLOE TALLOT at Galerie Suzanne Tarasiève January 10th, 2013 - February 9th, 2013
Posted 1/28/13
I really like Suzanne Tarasiève's Loft 19 space. Tucked away on a dead-end street behind Belleville it has the feel of a genuinely alternative art space, something different and away from the rest of the galleries. There's nothing like it in Paris. I always look forward to openings there as you get to see some good art and there's normally an interesting crowd and something nice to drink. This wasn't the case yesterday. ‘Forcément on pense au rouge’ by Chloé Tallot is based around a... [more]
Ceci N'est Pas: An Interview with Aude Pariset   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
Aude Pariset at Favorite Goods March 23rd, 2013 - April 27th, 2013
Posted 1/24/13
Aude Pariset isn't taking part in Art Los Angeles Contemporary, and most likely none of her work will be on display at any stall throughout it. She does however have a show at Favourite Goods gallery supported by Ceci N'est Pas. As an integral part of programming around ALAC this programme shows how an art fair isn't simply a commercially driven sharkfest but can also be a powerful driver of internationalism and offer the opportunity for young artists to both show their work and broaden their... [more]
A Night Out   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
Alex Cecchetti, Laure Prouvost at Shanaynay December 3rd, 2012 - December 31st, 2012
Posted 12/17/12
In previous articles I've complained about certain aspects of the Parisian art scene, one of which being that it lacks the spark and energy of new things. It's difficult in a conservative country that holds fine art and culture so close to its sense of identity. Last night was fortuitous. The PRs all spoke about Miami. It was very cold and grey in Paris. There was nothing to catch the eye. I walked into Shanaynay to find, among other artworks, a bicycle upturned and surrounded by tools. I... [more]
Big Galleries [Part Two]   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
Anselm Kiefer at Gagosian - Le Bourget October 19th, 2012 - January 26th, 2013
Posted 11/12/12
The journey to Gagosian's new Le Bourget gallery made last week’s trip to the suburbs look like child's play. While the Pantin space of Thaddeaus Ropac is conveniently situated a short walk from the metro, this involved travelling to the end of the metro line and then taking a bus for twenty-five minutes to reach the outskirts of the airfield on which it is situated.[1] Not for the first time I rued the absence of a private jet in my life, or a car for that matter. By the time I arrived I was... [more]
Big Galleries [Part One]   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
Anselm Kiefer at Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac - Pantin October 14th, 2012 - February 23rd, 2013
Posted 11/5/12
In general people who live in Paris, stay in Paris. And the big news of the moment in the art scene is that we can no longer do this. The reason being that both Galerie Ropac and Gagosian have taken it upon themselves to open new, large-scale, galleries outside the city (although by the standards of anywhere else in the world they are hardly in the nether and beyond, Pantin is still on the Metro, and the Gagosian gallery at Bourget is about twenty minutes from Gare du Nord by RER[1], however,... [more]
There is a lot of talk that things are changing in Paris, and it seems to be change in both directions. In one way we have big international galleries opening monumental spaces outside of the city, and in the other there's a collection of smaller galleries opening in the eastern arrondissements, centred around Belleville. Both movements seem to indicate an important shift, and will perhaps usher in a new period in the artistic life of the city. Could this be the moment when the East Side of... [more]
Perhaps Paris   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
Posted 10/16/12
Listen, there is no way around it. In the article that follows I'm going to be forced to wield sweeping generalisations, peddle the occasional stereotype, and generally piss off the people of my adopted home. However. It needs to be done. It's like one of those difficult talks that normally take place in the kitchen and are basically painful for one party. Home truths might be what we are dealing with here. I would also like to say that this is not a negative article and I don't want anyone to... [more]
Grumpy Sunday   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
Roman Ondák at Musée d'Art moderne de la Ville de Paris / ARC September 28th, 2012 - December 16th, 2012
Posted 10/14/12
I was in a bad mood when I entered the Musée D'Art Moderne. It was ten o'clock on a Sunday morning, and I'd just paid six euros for a completely average coffee – with bad service – when my fatigue and the hour would've already been enough. Entering the Roman Ondák exhibition, I had the distinct feeling that this was not the time to look at art, and immediately my suspicions were confirmed. After climbing the stairs I was in a dim space with two video installations running and lots of glass... [more]
There is a problem with trying to write this introduction. In it I feel like I should tell you about why and how you should read on, I should list the achievements and recognition that Elodie Seguin has already received, her success. I should mention that she is only twenty-eight years old. I could call her one of the hottest upcoming artists in France at the moment. But none of this seems quite right. It would seem a bit too much like hype. And this suits neither her nor her work. Instead I... [more]
Food is Hot Right Now   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
at Frieze London October 11th, 2012 - October 14th, 2012
Posted 10/10/12
Food is pretty hot right now. Art is also pretty hot right now, perhaps hotter than it's ever been. And both appear to be crisis resistant. The fiscal point isn't however where the similarities end as, if we examine it, food production and artistic production seem to be intertwined in a strangely symbiotic, and occasionally dysfunctional, relationship. It is not as simple as stating that artists like restaurants and chefs like art, although these things seem to be true; there appears to be an... [more]
A Unity in Difference   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
Mika Rottenberg at Galerie Laurent Godin September 8th, 2012 - October 13th, 2012
Posted 9/15/12
It was the first Saturday of openings in the Marais after everyone had closed for August and it seemed like there was a vernissage at every twenty meters. I don't know how many galleries are collected in what is less than a square mile. A lot. Fifty plus to make a wild guess. In these circumstances I was very happy that I made it out to the western edge of the area to Galerie Laurent Godin, who have a history of showing clean, clever, interesting work. In this instance they stayed true to form.... [more]
Panorama   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
Gerhard Richter at Centre Pompidou June 6th, 2012 - September 24th, 2012
Posted 8/24/12
For anyone reading this who hasn't been in Paris during the month of August it is hard to describe just how dead the city is. In the quarters outside the main tourist areas, cafes and shops are shut, the streets are quiet, the galleries closed. It is almost impossible to see a dentist. I was left with the Gerhard Richter exhibition at the Pompidou. There are worse things in the world certainly; however at the same time it proves difficult to tackle for purposes of review. Produced in... [more]
Some hours   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
Aya Takano at Galerie Perrotin - Saint Claude June 23rd, 2012 - July 28th, 2012
Posted 7/15/12
I was trapped in Galerie Perrotin by sheets of torrential rain. Summer in Paris this year is grey, cold, and wet. It's ridiculous to imagine how we all used to fantasise that global warming would bring balmy southern-style weather. The upside of the situation was the Aya Takano exhibition. In these circumstances the otherworldly lightness of her work proved to be welcome relief from the deluge outside. My enforced immobility also gave the opportunity to judge these works against a criteria... [more]
Crumbland   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
Robert Crumb at Musée d'Art moderne de la Ville de Paris / ARC April 13th, 2012 - August 19th, 2012
Posted 7/3/12
I love Robert Crumb as much as the next nerdy, sexually-perverse misanthrope but this was almost too much, like being sucked into his arsehole, twisted through various glandular and digestive tracts and then dragged out his gullet via heart and brain. Comprehensive doesn't begin to do it justice and he is no doubt responsible for the forty-percent increase of ogling at girl's bottoms on the Metro home. The man turned me into a monster, unleashed animal fuckatories in my brain I didn't know were... [more]
I met Matt Darbyshire at the opening of his first solo show in France. As an artist whose work shows not only a formal sculptural sensibility but also defies easy categorisation, his combinations of objects retain a delicious ambiguity. It's not simply critical or aesthetic but also combines the quotidian and the iconic in a way that brings out both the tackiness and the poetry of the things we find ourselves surrounded by. It is many things at the same time, and as such it's no surprise that... [more]
A Nice Slice of Problems   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
Pure Evil, Broken Fingaz, Pascal Le Gras at Lebenson Gallery June 2nd, 2012 10:00 AM - 1:00 PM
Posted 6/15/12
Before I went to see this show I was having a conversation with one of my more troublesome alter egos about the nature of street art, and you know, it kind of bums -- not street art itself, per se, but the whole 'street art' in a gallery, is it 'fine art' question/debate, along with its juvenile and spiky cousin that comes from the other side of the fence and claims that the transition from wall to white wall is, (here you can affect a slightly whiny voice if you so choose) 'selling out'. It... [more]
Don't Take It Too Seriously   Pick-button-f22fa879042524f5c7b8d2278b2983b8
Ivan Moudov at Galerie Alberta Pane May 5th, 2012 - June 16th, 2012
Posted 5/20/12
"It was a normal day in the Marais, the sun had given us a break from the rain, people were shopping, drinking coffee, going about their business. Not me. I lowered my eye to the glory hole. There was a bear on the other side, a bear in a bad way. He was laying down. From my position all I could see was the pile of his guts as they spilled out over the floor." Not the start of a hard-nosed gay policier. On one side of the glory hole was a gallery, on the other side of the glory hole was a... [more]
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