Category Blog

In Tokyo today: Sensual realism in contemporary stillebens

In Claudia Ahlering’s exhibition Still Alive opening this evening in Tokyo, the tradition of stilleben is being both celebrated and challenged by beautifully executed oil paintings on canvas. In the tombs of ancient Egypt walls were decorated with paintings of food objects as it was believed that the depicted items would become available to the deceased in the afterlife. The fascination with painting innate objects, most commonly placed on a table, has stayed with painters and we have seen many bold and successful takes over the years, although I do not remembering seeing a ring finger amongst carrots before; a ring finger with a glistening wedding ring still attached to it. In this bright and painterly composition with soft and warm colours, the dry and moldy carrots are placed in a pile on the floor next to a piece of furniture and a pair of white ladies shoes. Although the carrots have seen better days, the small green leaves are eagerly reaching up towards the light, and in this way life and death are interfacing each other throughout the exhibition.

Still Alive is Hamburg artist Ahlering’s second exhibition at Hiromart Gallery and although the opening is colliding with a possible encounter with the typhoon Jelawat threatening to approach Japan, gallery owner Hiromi Nishiyama is sticking to the schedule. Hiromi is known to defy natural catastrophes in the name of art since April 2011, when Ahlering’s Japan debut opened six weeks after Japan was struck by the massive earthquake, the tsunami and the nuclear disaster. Hiromi recalls the event: “During that difficult time art was more important than ever before. Sometimes we need art to escape reality and at that time the exhibition made us all feel much better as we were able to have a good time and enjoy Claudia’s creations.”

Sensual portraits of young people embodying immortality, whose radiant skin seems to reflect the beauty and the softness of the flowers resting next to their bodies, continue to comment on the fragility and possibility of time. When asked whether her Japanese visitors will appreciate the dark humor and the feminist slant, Hiromi is certain that Still Alive will be met with awe and curiosity in the gallery which is now filled with an unusually strong smell of oil paint. The Japanese art lovers have a lot to discover at Hiromart Gallery, which is one of very few Tokyo galleries dealing in International art. It is both amusing and heart-warming for the gallery owner to be a pioneer in this field. “There must be a different kind of oil paint that they use in Europe? I am looking forward to seeing how people will react to it.”


“Tom” by Claudia Ahlering, now exhibited at Hiromart Gallery

Promotional links::

www.hiromartgallery.com

www.claudiaahlering.de

TEAM REX – The biggest graffiti exhibition London has ever seen

At the end of this month, TEAM ROBBO will be presenting the biggest graffiti exhibition London has ever seen. ‘TEAM REX – Origin of the Species’, opens to the public at the Red Gallery at 3 Rivington Street in East London (EC2) Shoreditch on 31st August.

We have witnessed an explosive activity and interest in street art over the last few years, but how did it all begin? Many debates search to make a distinction between street art and graffiti, as these two art forms now co-exist – each with its own group of supporters. TEAM REX – Origin of the Species suggests a different angle, a non-competitive and contemplative historical perspective with a focus on showcasing the “graffiti DNA” and its artistic mutations.

Contemporary Talks have had the rare opportunity to get very close to TEAM ROBBO and have followed them from back in 2010, when King Robbo was still bombing the streets of London. Last year, after Robbo’s accident when he fell into a coma, his team have continued to spread his message of collaboration, unity, love of the arts and fearless expression. When looking at graffiti in its essence, without commenting on internal or external politics, financial issues and other implications, it is an artistic expression that takes many forms. To capture the astonishing variety of artistic genius that has evolved, TEAM REX – Origin of the Species is bringing together NYC subway veterans like KEL, Crash, Blade, Mare 139, Duster and Duro with British classics such as Tox, SheOne, Remi Rough and 10 Foot. The International presence includes Russia, Norway, Switzerland, France, Germany and the present number of countries represented is still growing.

“Everyone who thought that graffiti could be boxed in and limited to certain circumstances, will be amazed at how the creative DNA of street/train graffiti, spawned in New York City – developed, spread and mutated around the world, creating a kaleidoscope of art and culture.”  – Prime, Team Robbo

Until the day of the opening we don’t know what the show will precisely offer, but TEAM ROBBO are promising a substantial number of graffiti-based pieces in various materials, techniques, shapes and forms. The show will take over the entire Red Gallery, with three internal gallery spaces and the fashionable Red Market, where live painting events with invited artists will take place. The exhibition pieces are to be hung simultaneously with live pieces on the walls surrounding the Red Market and considering the exploding popularity of Shoreditch’s most enjoyable marketplace and the fairly priced bar, we can expect a huge and jolly crowd.

In this manner, Robbo’s creative spirit continues push the borders of the art scene, locally and internationally. We will ask ourselves questions such as ‘What is contemporary graffiti?’ and bare witness to how graffiti evolves in an exhibition space.

A series of free talks and events related to TEAM REX – Origin of the Species will also be provided – full details are provided on the website dedicated to the exhibition – www.TeamRex.org. We do know that Mare 183 and KEL are flying in from New York to give talks at the Red Gallery on the 29th of Aug and 1st of Sept at around 7 pm.

If you wish to attend the Private View on 30th August and free entry to the after party at East Village, London – you’d better hurry to get your name on the guestlist which is almost certainly going to be oversubscribed. You can apply via the private view link on TeamRex.org: http://www.teamrex.org/privateview

Forget the politics, avoid the media, play positive jams, fill your headspace with positive inculcations – that’s how you privately beat the system. XXXXXXX, true say    Punk Roc    true star – Choci-Roc, Team Robbo

Exhibition opening times 

Team Rex exhibition runs from 31st August until 9th September. Opening hours are Mon / Tues / Wed / Fri / Sat 10am – 7pm | Thurs 10am – 8pm / Sun 11am – 5pm – Entry is free. For special events – see website www.teamrex.org.

The Team Rex exhibition is organised by Team Robbo and Prank Sky Media.

www.TeamRobbo.orgwww.Pranksky.com

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Promotional links:::

About TEAM ROBBO

Team Robbo is the driving force behind the global movement which is articulating the cultural hegemony within the graffiti/street scene. The arts collective was formed in 2010 by its founder and inspiration, King Robbo, a champion of the original street art movement who can be traced back to the early days of NYC graffiti in the 80s.

Through exhibitions, auctions and creative events, Team Robbo and its core members have positioned themselves to redefine the landscape of graffiti-inspired art, design and culture in all its forms at the centre of the art market. Following the airing of the award-winning documentary “Graffiti Wars” (last year on Channel 4, UK) which featured King Robbo, Team Robbo’s subsequent art exhibition at Signal Gallery and auction club event at Cargo cemented it in its place as a dynamic and successful arts group, able to galvanize support and loyalty from investors, collectors and a worldwide fan-base.

www.TeamRobbo.org / www.TeamRex.org / twitter.com/TeamRexLDN

About RED GALLERY

Red Gallery hosts exhibitions, live art, literary soirees, symposiums, film screenings, live music and club events. Their vision is to promote an expansive artistic culture and curate large-scale gallery shows (currently touring internationally) covering subjects as diverse as the history of acid house and the future of art in the East End, with exhibitions such as ‘20 years of Acid House’, ‘East End Promise’ and ‘East Pop’.

Over the past 18 months Red Gallery have collaborated with a wide array of artists, art collectives and organisations including; Adam Dant, Bo Ningen, East End Film Festival, Gavin Turk, House of Fairy Tales, i-D magazine, Kid Koala, Le Gun, Noriko Okaku, Onedotzero, Soul Clap, Soundcloud, and Camberwell and Kingston Colleges of Art and Redsonik.

About RED MARKET

The Red Market Pop-Up fuses Food, Drink, Art, Music & Leisure Across 20,000 Sq. Ft in East London

What do you get when East London’s most prominent street, Old Street, hosts and brings together local East London traders, artists and musicians? A unique outdoor ‘Pop Up’, now in its second year and bigger and better combining social regeneration and shared cultural pursuits.

Running from July 6th to September 2nd 2012, The Red Market Pop Up, a fully licensed space open from midday to 11pm daily will transport visitors through East London’s culinary and creative delights amongst a 20,000sq ft outdoor space with various installations including a stage, a summer house, a sand area, table tennis, hammocks, graffiti artworks and petanque pitches.

Building on the success of their 2010 take-over of 1-3 Rivington Street, then a derelict building, the team behind The Red Market Pop Up transformed the area into one of London’s key cultural hubs building relationships with East London’s many creative individuals and organisations. The team today offer low cost space on Rivington Street to artists and internet start-ups whilst hosting a selection of exhibitions, live art, live music, literary events and film screenings amongst other activities.

www.RedGalleryLondon.com


Art quote:: Japanese art connoisseur at the age of six

One day a six year old convinced his mother that they must enter the contemporary art gallery Hiromart Gallery in Tokyo, located amongst Japanese gardens and frequently visited by an International crowd thanks to the neighboring hotels. After having spent a good two and a half hour indulging critically in the art works, the young man decided which painting he loved the most. The mother tried to convince her son that the smallest (and therefore the cheapest) painting was his favorite, but he was not impressed by the colors in the small painting. Gallery owner Hiromi was watching with great surprise when the six year old signed the contract and declared the painting sold.

From feature Robin Fry’s glittering ‘Golden Altitudes’ at Hiromart Gallery in Tokyo

Photo: Tokugawa Ieyasu

 

From feature Robin Fry’s glittering ‘Golden Altitudes’ at Hiromart Gallery in Tokyo

 

Art project SEEDS OF BLISS / بذر / גרעינים is defying political, religious and geographical borders in the Middle East

Photo: Shula Covo, all rights reserved

The intention of SEEDS OF BLISS   / بذر  /   גרעינים is to bring people in the Middle East together to chew a total of ten tons of sunflower seeds in neighbouring cities. This intercultural cooperation project by interdisciplinary artist Noam Edry, in collaboration with the Haifa Museum and Artis Contemporary, is not about nationality, politics, religion or any other differentiating factor; all participants are individuals living in a Middle Eastern city and they come together with their neighbours to share the pleasure of a tradition deeply rooted in their part of the world. Jordanians from Aqaba and Israelis from Eilat live within 6 km from each other with an equal distance of less than 1 km to the Red Sea. Now we have entered August, which is when the sunflower seeds are ready for harvest and the sunflower seed donations for SEEDS OF BLISS   / بذر  /   גרעינים have reached a total of 3 tons. The artist, who is travelling around Israel for meetings with the country’s seeding companies, is met with great enthusiasm and it should not be long until the ten tons have been raised.

In September, ten people from Eilat will cross the border and get together with their neighbors in Aqaba to chew, spit, drink coffee and socialize for five days at Al-Fardos Café.  Later on, the people from Aqaba will cross the border over to Eilat and continue the seed-shelling with their new friends. To get the Israeli State to approve the Jordanian’s VISA applications is a complicated procedure, but Noam Edry is working on the bureaucracy together with trusted volunteers. Additional neighboring cities to take part in SEEDS OF BLISS   / بذر  /   גרעינים are Nablus-Haifa and Jenin-Afula. All stages of the project are being documented and the 5-day performances will be filmed and publicized in the press in real-time. Though in its early stages, SEEDS OF BLISS   / بذر  /   גרעינים has already received huge TV and press coverage in Israel and is stirring quite an interest worldwide. After the completion of the project, the artist hopes to exhibit the remnants of ten tons of sunflower seeds and the documentation in London, as a humorous Middle-Eastern response to Ai Weiwei’s Sunflower Seeds. “The Chinese are expert craftsmen. Our expertise is to chew and spit” she explains.

Photo: Shula Covo, all rights reserved

Noam Edry describes her recent visit to Aqaba in her own words:

“I came with my photographer and the people in Aqaba adopted us immediately. Hasan, the owner of Al-Fardos café, hosted us and treated me like a real friend. Hasan introduced me to his friend Nabih, the manager of the mosque, and single-handedly they put together a team of ten very trustworthy and responsible Jordanians, who understand the nature of this project.”

Every evening the artist got together with Hasan and people from all around Aqaba to enjoy the friendly atmosphere at Hasan’s café, where the conversations flowed naturally accompanied by sunflower seeds, shish and coffee. Although the city has plenty of entertainment to offer a visitor, it was nothing that could beat the contentment of simply chilling out, talking about life and discussing the beautiful possibilities of SEEDS OF BLISS   / بذر  /   גרעינים. Throughout the evenings people discreetly joined the group with a passport in their hand and expressed their wish to participate in the project, which put the artist in a very humbling position.

Noam Edry has been studying Arabic in order to better communicate with her volunteers. Thanks to the abounding conversations that have taken place during the initial stages of the project, all happening in a sunflower seed chewing spirit, the nature of SEEDS OF BLISS   / بذر  /   גרעינים is becoming increasingly organic and collaborative. The starting event will take place on 23 August 2012 in the artist’s birthplace of Kibbutz Ramat Yohanan, a small communal settlement in the North of Israel, with the participation of the neighboring Arab-Bedouin villages of Ras Ali and Khawaled. Together they will chew the first few kilos of sunflower seeds.

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[More on Noam Edry]

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Interview Series 2011

Part 1 – A constant battle for the freedom of speech in a web of taboos and envy

Part 2 – From sharp-edged politics to an S&M club and back again

Part 3 – “I Am the Terrorist”

Feature on Childhood

Born a War Painter

Reviews

Museum of Art, Ein Harod, Israel, 2012

Goldsmiths MFA 2011

 

Noam Edry was born in 1982 in Israel in a communal settlement and raised in London. Her work explores questions of identity, mechanisms of power and domination and their physical relationship to the human body. She works internationally on ambitious projects that often involve a large number of participants, merging the physical with the political; the body and the private space of the individual function as allegories to the social and political sphere. Edry completed her Master of Fine Art with Distinction at Goldsmiths, University of London (2011) and a BA of Fine Art at Bezalel Academy of Art & Design Jerusalem (2005), she studied painting at the Ecole Nationale Superieure des Beaux Arts de Paris (2003-4) and acting at the Nissan Nativ Acting Studio, Tel Aviv. Her recent solo show at the Ein Harod Museum, Israel titled “The Silver Salver” (2012) explored the relevance of national Israeli emblems and involved living sculptures; actors and actresses who dressed up as exported fruits and vegetables in a reconstruction of a bloody battle field. Artis Grant recipient 2012, shortlisted for the Red Mansion Art Prize (2011), Israeli Arts Council Grant recipient (2008), winner of the Bremen Art Grant (2008), winner of the International Jewish Artist of the Year Award (2004).

IDM + minimal techno mix – We Love Mondays

 

 

 

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We Love Mondays Track list

tshirt (Claes Ericson) – the horse
Doc Deem – New Oryed
tshirt (Claes Ericson) – faddlack
Doc Deem – 222
decontractex (Claes Ericson) – aconcagua
Doc Deem – Lowe Road
Doc Deem – Hug Girl

Also thanks to rutgermuller, zippi1 acclivity and corsica-s on www.freesound.org

 

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Click to read interview with Doc Deem

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Video:: Bengalfuel – Spence’s

Based in New York and New Jersey, the artistic duo Bengalfuel delivers ambient anti-Newtonian art videos directed by one of the collaborators, Joe LiTrenta (aka Doc Deem). The other half is Dentist, and together they defy gravity sonically and visually.

Click to read interview with Doc Deem


Video:: Bengalfuel – Free

Based in New York and New Jersey, the artistic duo Bengalfuel delivers ambient anti-Newtonian art videos directed by one of the collaborators, Joe LiTrenta (aka Doc Deem). The other half is Dentist, and together they defy gravity sonically and visually.

Click to read interview with Doc Deem

The artistic process and the importance of creativity

When you are an artist, creativity is one of the most important traits that you can possess. The ability to think outside the box and do something unique is what makes you stand out from others and get noticed for your talents. For those who love to be creative, the artistic process tends to follow on from a moment of inspiration and continue through an outpouring of talent until you, as the artist, are happy with the finished product.

The moment of inspiration can come at any time. It can strike you like a bolt of lightening when you are washing the dishes or playing a game of Partypoker. The point is that you will often find inspiration when you least expect it and the important thing is to be ready for it. The minute you feel inspired to create something new, if you can drop whatever else you are doing, then do that. Head to your artistic area and get painting, drawing or however else you create your artwork,

The process of creating a spectacular piece of art can vary from lengthy to surprisingly fast, depending on what you are creating and how you are doing it. Aside from creativity, another important attribute to have is patience, as this will come in handy when you are creating something that requires hours of meticulous work. Always have a vision of the finished article in mind and do not give up on it. The feeling once you have created something that you are really proud of is definitely worth all of the hard work that you have put into it. Also, the actual process of creating the artwork can be very enjoyable in itself, so you should remember to pay attention to this all the time and make the most of it.