Sotheby’s Bear Witness

Last week I had the pleasure to attend the preview exhibition of Bear Witness in London’s Sotheby’s. The house’s one of the largest ever auction was about contemporary artworks and the gallery was transformed in the spirit. Sotheby’s took a brave step to present the exhibition in this way. The whole evening felt revolutionary and a real pleasure to see and experience. The entire collection belonged to an anonymus vendor whose passion for the modern art was completed by that for the bears and skulls, which have also been auctioned alongside the artworks.

The auction took place on the 10, 11 and 12 of March and I was very curious to see the results. The total sales have risen above £36 million, with higlights such as Rothko’s Untitled (£3.397.000), Gerhard Richter’s Sternbild (£1.565.000) or Lucio Fontana’s Concetto Spaziale, Attesa (£1.865.000).
The details of the auction are available here.
Mark Rothko

Mark Rothko

Francesto Clemente

Francesto Clemente

Kader Attia

Kader Attia

Isaac Julien

Isaac Julien is an artist and filmmaker, whose art I find sophisticated and inspiring. He is having an exhibition in the MOMA, NY called Ten Thousand Waves. It is a film installation from 2010 inspired by the Morecambe Bay tragedy of 2004, in which more than 20 Chinese cockle pickers drowned on a flooded sandbank off the coast in northwest England and the ancient China (source: MOMA). The shots were taken in Shanghai, both the modern and old parts of it.

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I was delighted to be informed about an upcoming exhibition of the artist in the recently opened gallery of Victoria Miro in Mayfair. The new seven screen installation called Playtime will receive its world premier at the Gallery on the 24 January and is going to run until the 1 March.

The Japan Foundation, London

My latest discover in London is The Japan Foundation. It is a place where you can study Japanese supported by a library with language teaching materials, you can learn more about the culture of Japan, and you can explore and get a closer look at the art of Japan.They organize various events and talks related to art.  The next one is Intervening in Nature and Society: History of the ‘Art Project’ in Japan, 1955-2013, a talk by Kenji Kajiya on the 17 of October.

“In this talk, Kenji Kajiya, Associate Professor of Art History at Hiroshima City University, will discuss how art projects took place and have developed in postwar Japan. Tracing back to outdoor exhibitions organised by Gutai Art Association and Kyushu-ha in the mid-1950s, he will demonstrate how non-museum-based exhibitions have developed and taken shaped through each decade, before international art festivals in rural setting and university-based outdoor exhibitions stood out as art projects in the 2000s.

This talk will provide an insightful and historical account of art projects and their development to the present day, considering how these phenomena have been integrated or interacted with natural landscapes and society in Japan.” (source: Japan Foundation)

These events are all free of charge but booking is essential. You can browse for more programmes and reserve on the site.

Flowers and Birds of the Four Seasons by Kanō Eitoku

 

Save me. – exhibition in Muswell Hill London – interview

On the day of the 7 October 2013 I took part in one of the workshops  of Impreint, an artist who decided to create a concept and not only his ego, and he has definitely done it! Don't buy this. It is nothing!

Here my interview:

N: What is Save me.?             IMPREINT Save me.

I: Is a project related to art and children.

N: Why is it called Save me.?

I: It’s taken from one of my first work on canvas. Through my experience I discovered that creativity can give a different vision and perspective. When I was painting “save me” it was not a request of help but a declaration that this was an answer, so the same I propose as an experience to the others.

N: When did you decide to create these workshops?

I: Since I decided to be an artist one of my priorities was to share with the others. In this specific project I decided to create common workshops about balloons to give them unification.

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N: When are you going to do the next one and how do you choose the places, I mean do you privilege disadvantage areas?

I: No matter social class, so no matter areas. We are doing something together. Together it means that we don’t make distinctions between us for a common intent.

N: Who are the people involved in this project and who can participate?

I: Whoever feels something inside himself connected with what I’m doing can participate just contacting me. Is a work of meaning and can be done also without my presence.

                                                        IMPREINT Save me.

IMPREINT – Balloons

My interview with IMPREINT -an artist who I personally admire and just started to collaborate with-  about his last project called ‘Balloons’.

Napsugar Budai: So why is this project?

IMPREINT: To develop an idea I had 3 years ago in a series of initiatives and work in progress all around the world including the video that you participate.

NB.: How did you make this video?

I.: Sharing balloons with the people.

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NB.: Do you like to share your work with others?

I.: I think it is the meaning of being an artist.

NB.: Was it simple to realise this video?

I.: In the moment when you decide to share your work you have to accept the compromise that it will be not exactly what you would like to realise, but this is also the beauty of it. I wasn’t looking for a ‘perfect’ job, but for something alive.

NB.: What do these balloons represent for you?

I.: The people, so different, unique, so beautiful with all their imperfections, and the opportunity to see the same scene with different prospectives. So for me they represent also hope.

NB.: Could you explain more about the workshops with children please?

I.: They are part of a project called ‘Save me.’, related to art and children where everybody can participate. Who is interested can find more information on the site. I will be pleased to establish new collaborations.

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Photos of a workshop with a School in Hungary

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NB.: Don’t you think that the idea of balloons can be considered too simple and copyable?

I.: I like simple things, I find extremely sophisticated.  Let’s hope everybody will copy then!

NB.: In the material that you gave me about this project I read ‘Let’s fill all the world with balloons!’ Is this what you would like to do?

I.: Yes, until the world itself will assume the form of a balloon!

NB.: Then you will be satisfied?

I.: Then I will invent something else!