The First Art Newspaper on the Net Established in 1996 United States Monday, August 31, 2015

National Museum of Anthropology in Mexico City exhibits the enigmatic Calakmul mask

The Calakmul Mask is a funerary piece elaborated in jade mosaic, shell and gray obsidian, found in Tomb 1 in Structure VII, in the archaeological zone of the same name, in the state of Campeche, whose antiquity goes back to 660 and 750 AD. Photo: Colección Archivo Digital MNA-INAH.

MEXICO CITY.- A series of temporary exhibits called “One piece, one culture” starts with the exhibition “The Calakmul Mask. Universe in Jade.” During its inauguration, Teresa Franco, director of the National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH), added that through a single piece highly significant many elements of thought and the worldview of one of the greatest cultures could be explained: the Mayans. The director of INAH added that the exhibition shown in the National Museum of Anthropology is aided by many new technologies in order to get closer some of the most representative works of the ancient civilizations in Mexico to newer audiences, especially young people. Teresa Franco said that two of the first halls are consecrated to an experience that appeals to the public’s senses through visual, sound and graphic effects that produce a lyrical space; afterwards a third ... More

The Best Photos of the Day

Japanese toilet giant flipping open new museum dedicated to a century of lavatories   Palm Springs Art Museum opens the acclaimed exhibition 'Killer Heels: The Art of the High-Heeled Shoe'   'Mito e Natura: Dalla Grecia a Pompei' on view at the Palazzo Reale in Milan for Expo 2015

High-tech toilets, common in Japan, regularly win praise.

TOKYO (AFP).- Japan's leading toilet giant opens a new museum this week dedicated to a century of lavatories, from its first water flushing model to the most cutting edge version with odour-neutralisers and variable water jets. The museum operated by TOTO -- best known for its bidet-equipped Washlet series -- opens its doors on Friday in the southwestern city of Kitakyushu, where the company is based. High-tech toilets, common in Japan, regularly win praise from foreign tourists and celebrities as the epitome of Japanese know-how -- a contraption that offers both comforting warmth and a frighteningly accurate bidet jet. But the toilet firm said Thursday that it is reaching back into its past with a replica of its first water flushing toilet seat, which came onto the market in 1914. There will also be remakes of washrooms that TOTO supplied to major buildings across Japan, including the ... More

Prada, Wedge Sandal in Rosso, Bianco, and Nero Leather, Spring/Summer 2012, courtesy of Prada USA Corp, photography by Jake Zukerkorn.

PALM SPRINGS, CA.- Palm Springs Art Museum will open the highly anticipated exhibition Killer Heels: The Art of the High-Heeled Shoe on September 5, which will be on view through December 13, 2015. The exhibition merges fashion, film, and material culture, while exploring the fashion world’s most coveted object, its rich cultural history, and its complex relationships to fantasy, functionality, identity and power. Organized thematically, Killer Heels features more than 110 contemporary high heels and 50 historical designs drawn from designer archives, the Brooklyn Museum, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s renowned costume collections. Beyond the archetypal forms – stiletto, wedge, and platform – the emphasis is on designs that play with the sculptural, architectural, and artistic possibilities of the high heel ... More

Statua di Trittolemo.

MILAN.- With about 180 art works from Greece, Magna Graecia and Rome, the exhibition MITO E NATURA. Dalla Grecia a Pompei, organized for Expo 2015, presents a little-known aspect of the classical world: the representation of nature in its various aspects, the impact of human beings on the natural world and the environment. We present visitors with the most up-to-date research on a fascinating and little known facet of our classical roots. The works on display come from museums in Italy and abroad, including the National Archaeological Museum in Athens, the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna and the Louvre in Paris. The MITO E NATURA project is sponsored by the City of Milan– Arts Council with the University of Milan, the University of Salerno, the National Archaeological Museum in Naples and the Soprintendenza Speciale per Pompei, Ercolano e Stabia, and is organized by Palazzo Reale with the Electa ... More

Bruce Museum curator authors a paper on the reconstruction a 34 million year old penguin's brain   Chinese paintings and works of art rich in symbolism characterize Gianguan Auctions' September 12th Sale   Volkswagen launches cultural engagement initiative in China with opening of the Rain Room

Life restoration of a 34.2 million year old Antarctic fossil penguin and the extant chinstrap penguin, with 3Dvirtual reconstruction of their brains based on X-Ray CT scan data (top right). Original artwork by Santiago Druetta.

GREENWICH, CONN.- Bruce Museum Curator of Science Dr. Daniel T. Ksepka has coauthored a research paper on fossil penguin brain endocasts that will be published as a feature article in the prestigious academic journal Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology in September. The artwork related to the article, pictured above, will appear on the journal’s cover. The paper, co-authored by Dr. Claudia Tambussi, Dr. Federico “Dino” Degrange (both based in Argentina), and Dr. Ksepka sheds light on the penguin brain based on research conducted with Antarctic fossils, some more than 34 million years old. The international team used computed tomography (CT) scan data to map the areas once occupied by the brain in the fossils, creating a virtual model that includes the brain, cranial nerves, semicircular canals, and blood vessels. This allowed them to compare the volume and morphology of the fossil penguins to modern species like the ... More

Detail of "The Steed and Groom" by Zhao Mengfu, Yuan Dynasty, in traditional tonalities with one red tether. Signed Zhao Mengfu, with one artist seal and sixteen Collectors’ seals. $10,000,000 - $15,000,000.

NEW YORK, NY.- The splendor of China’s heritage is once again the focus of the exceptionally strong collections of classical and modern paintings and dynastic works of art set for auction on September 12 at Gianguan Auctions New York. The symbolism that underlies every facet of Chinese culture and Buddhist art is front and center. The elevation of scholarship is apparent in the craftsmanship displayed in items as varied a carved jades, antique ceramics, and jewelry and teapots. A collection of multi-million dollar scroll paintings underscores the leadership position accorded Gianguan Auctions in this area. Among the upper tier highlights is Lot 105, “The Steed and Groom,” by Zhao Mengfu (1254-1322). A prince and descendant of the royal family, Zhao Mengfu broke from tradition to explore the layering of grounds at various heights to create depth. In this ink on a stone-black stallion with one red tether is matched with a l ... More

In this file photo visitors gather in the 'Rain Room' installation at the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in Manhattan. Mario Tama/Getty Images/AFP.

SHANGHAI.- Volkswagen begins its activities as a cultural partner in China with the involvement of Volkswagen Group China in the Rain Room exhibition. Opened on Saturday evening in Shanghai, the exhibition marks the first display of Rain Room in China. The artwork created by the British-German artist collective, Random International, has already been met with great interest with displays in London and New York and for the first time occupies an area of 150m² in Shanghai so that it surpasses all previously exhibited versions. Speaking to 300 invited guests, Budi Tek, founder of the YUZ foundation which operates the YUZ museum, and Klaus Biesenbach, Chief Curator at Large at the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), New York and Director of MoMA PS1, who, together with Hans-Ulrich Obrist, was responsible for exhibition of Rain Room in New York, as well as Prof. Dr Jochem Heizmann, President and CEO of Volkswagen Group China and member of the Executive Board of Volkswagen AG, ... More

First one-man-show of Korean artist Kwang Young Chun's work opens at Beck & Eggeling   Over and Some Touch of...: Group exhibition opens at CACT Centro d'Arte Contemporanea Ticino   Contemporary art installation at Smithsonian's Sackler Gallery explores images of Egypt

Kwang Young Chun.

DUSSELDORF.- Beck & Eggeling presents at the start of the autumn season the exhibition “Mulberry Mindscapes“ by the Korean artist Kwang Young Chun. The opening will take place on Friday 4th September 2015 at 6 pm at Bilker Strasse 5 & 4-6 in Duesseldorf, on the occasion of the gallery weekend 'DC Open 2015'. The artist will be present. Kwang Young Chun is considered to be a contemporary master working with paper and is widely recognized for his installations and three-dimensional reliefs. Beck & Eggeling presents the Korean artist for the very first time in Germany with his newest works from the series Aggregation. Meticulously, Chun creates distinctive surface textures by wrapping hundreds of handmade triangles of styrofoam into Korean Mulberry paper printed with Korean characters and and fixing them onto canvas. He thus creates three-dimensional wall art with a sculptural potential. The silk paper ... More

Anna Choi, Untitled, Acrylic on canvas, 2015, 200 x 180 cm.

BELLINZONA.- OVER is an anthological exhibition that constitutes something of a platform, where artists who use different languages coexist in a general artistic and aesthetic panorama in a constant state of flux. Quite apart from those cells that are still vigorously distinguished by the paradigms of the Avant-garde, whose nucleus anticipated the figure of an militant artist involved socially and politically in its evolutionary developments, for the generation of artists who were born in the sixties and seventies, the concept of irreversibility and of stylistic consistency has become drastically absent these days. Some of these artists feature in OVER, on the one hand to underscore – this is the curator’s intention – the blurred sense of historical belonging that is now somewhat dated, while on the other to convey an understanding of the extent to which the identity of the transition, transmedia ... More

Detail of Oum el Dounia by Lara Baladi (b. 1969, Beirut), Belgium, 2000-2007. Wool and cotton. Courtesy of the artist.

WASHINGTON, DC.- A large-scale tapestry by Egyptian-Lebanese photographer and multimedia artist Lara Baladi (b. 1969, Beirut, Lebanon) is being exhibited in the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery pavilion this summer as part of the museum’s “Perspectives” contemporary art series. On view Aug. 29–June 5, 2016, “Perspectives: Lara Baladi” centers on “Oum el Dounia,” a tapestry created by digital loom and based on a photographic collage. Immense in scale—nearly 10 feet tall and over 29 feet wide—the work playfully illustrates a genesis story that upends stereotypical views of Egypt and the desert. “Baladi’s multidisciplinary work questions and experiments with the photographic medium, its history and role in shaping perceptions and narratives of the Middle East,” said Carol Huh, assistant curator of contemporary art at the Freer and ... More

Craft in America episode focuses on how fine handmade instruments are crafted   Solo exhibition of new works by artist Cecilia Paredes opens at Ruiz-Healy Art   Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago partners with the Chicago Architecture Biennial

Joan Baez with her Martin guitar. Courtesy of the C.F. Martin Archives, Greg Solomacha photograph.

LOS ANGELES, CA.- Craft in America, the Peabody Award-winning documentary series, now in its 7th season, returns to PBS, on November 20th at 10pm*, with an all new episode, titled MUSIC, which focuses on how fine handmade instruments are crafted and the world-renowned artists who play them, demonstrating the perfect blend of form and function. The hour features interviews and performances from Joan Baez, Rhiannon Giddens, Director of the Count Basie Orchestra Scotty Barnhart, banjo master Tony Ellis, Los Angeles Philharmonic timpanist Joseph Pereira, and virtuoso ukulele player Jake Shimabukuro. By exploring how various instruments are perfected, MUSIC also offers viewers a unique journey through our country's past, detailing the contributions of jazz and Appalachian roots music to the American cultural landscape, as well as the intersection of the guitar and political activism, and how the legacy of West ... More

Cecilia Paredes, Corinthians - 3/7, 2014 (detail). Photo performance, 49 x 49".

SAN ANTONIO, TX.- Ruiz-Healy Art will participate in FOTOSEPTIEMBRE USA International Photography Festival and will present The Wandering Flight a solo exhibition of new works by internationally renowned artist Cecilia Paredes. Born in Lima, Peru, Paredes currently works and lives between Philadelphia, PA and Lima, Peru. She studied fine Arts at the Catholic University of Lima, Cambridge Arts and Crafts School in England, and the Accademia del Nudo in Roma in Italy. The Wandering Flight tells the story of the desire to fly. The narrative begins with a place to arrive—a port—here the character can dwell in search of relevance. Camouflaged within the surroundings, the character inhabits a perfect symbiotic realm. The exhibition’s flight narrative continues with four large format tapestries made out of feathers. The artist dyed common feathers to set them ablaze with colors in these arrangements. As Simon Flores states,  ... More

Christo, Orange Store Front, 1964-65. Collection Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, gift of Natalie and Irving Forman. Photo: Nathan Keay, © MCA Chicago.

CHICAGO, IL.- The Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago is a partner of the inaugural Chicago Architecture Biennial, and in celebration of this city-wide cultural event, the MCA presents four exhibitions, four programs, and a pop-up shop of design objects. Each showcases architectural innovation within the contemporary art community. The MCA celebrates and cultivates the multidisciplinary ways in which artists work, and the exhibitions and programs that run concurrent to the biennial highlight the intersection of creativity and functionality that is integral to contemporary architecture and design. Pop Art is widely regarded as the most significant artistic movement since 1945. Reflecting on the cult of celebrity, commodity fetishism, and media reproduction that permeated everyday life in the post-war era, Pop Art continues ... More

The birds' song gets on my nerves. I feel like trampling every worm. Paul Klee

More News
First major solo exhibition of visual artist Anne de Vries opens at Foam
AMSTERDAM.- Foam presents the first major solo exhibition of visual artist Anne de Vries (born 1977, The Hague) in which existing and new work are combined. Anne de Vries grew up in a time in which the internet, Photoshop, Tumblr and mobile upload feeds came to seem entirely natural. They embrace the fluid, dynamic world that exists in the computer and the new world facilitated by it, deploying photography as an important part of a far broader artistic practice, in which a diversity of materials, techniques and methods are brought together. His visual language is strongly influenced by corporate branding, commercial visual merchandising and stock photography. The starting point for Anne de Vries his work is the combination of abstract notions of ‘new materialism’ with the everyday, common objects and with new materials, technologies and printing techniques. His oeuvre ranges from ... More

Young French photographer Jean-Vincent Simonet opens exhibition in Amsterdam
AMSTERDAM.- When the young French photographer Jean-Vincent Simonet (Lyon, 1991) came across the book Les Chants de Maldoror (The Songs of Maldoror), he felt hugely attracted to the dark, theatrical and transgressive character. The cutting-edge book praising youth revolt, blasphemy and the victory of dream over reality was published in 1869 by Comte de Lautréamont. Jean-Vincent Simonet decided to revive the literary enigma by transforming the classic novel into a contemporary book and exhibition Maldoror. Simonet’s photos don’t literally follow the text of The Songs of Maldoror but are related to the universe of Lautremont: romanticism, chaos, bestiality, science, intimacy and literacy. The photographs of Simonet are based on the atmosphere it evokes. The eclectic style of the book inspired Simonet to use a diversity of photographic techniques and layouts. Simonet used ... More

Migrant drama hits European screens in film 'Mediterranea'
PARIS (AFP).- As migrant tragedies overflow in the news cycle, especially in Europe, a new movie opening in France puts a human -- and artistic -- face on the phenomenon up on the big screen. "Mediterranea", a first feature by US-Italian director Jonas Carpignano who was part of the shooting crew on the well-received 2012 film "Beasts of the Southern Wild", follows two Africans as they make an odyssey to Europe -- and to disillusionment. It starts in Algeria and moves to Libya, a launching-off point for some of the many perilous cross-Mediterranean boat trips being made by hundreds of thousands of migrants and refugees each year. It then goes on to show the dangers and hard slog as the two main characters make it to Italy. One of the characters is played by Koudous Seihon, and the story is inspired by his true-life story: born in Ghana he first went to Burkina Faso after the death of his father then ... More

Pablo Helguera's 'Librería Donceles' opens at the Henry Art Gallery in Seattle
SEATTLE, WA.- Librería Donceles is an itinerant, second-hand bookstore, created by Pablo Helguera in 2013 to serve the growing Hispanic and Latino communities and their limited access to Spanish-language books in the United States. Since it was first installed in New York City, Librería Donceles has traveled to Phoenix, San Francisco, Brooklyn, and now Seattle. Each time that it has been presented, it has been the sole Spanish-language used bookstore within that city. There are millions of Spanish speakers in the United States and yet there is a scarcity of books available in Spanish. The situation has been made more critical by transformations in the publishing industry, and with the rise of digital publications and online retailers. Comprising 20,000 volumes on topics ranging from anthropology, biography, and economics, to psychology, science, and theater, the books in Librería Donceles ... More

Jailed filmmaker inspires Ukraine with bestselling book
KIEV.- Ukrainians are snapping up the autobiography of film director Oleg Sentsov, who was last week sentenced by Russia to 20 years in prison in a shock ruling that sparked global condemnation. All 2,000 copies of the book titled "Stories" flew off the shelves the day after Russia announced the verdict, and an additional print run is in the pipeline. Russia last week convicted the 39-year-old Sentsov, who opposed the Crimean annexation, of terrorism charges. His countrymen are buying the collection of autobiographical stories in a poignant gesture of solidarity. Half the proceeds from the book, which costs 50 hryvnias ($2.3) per copy, will be used to help pay for Sentsov's defence team and support his wife and two children. "We still don't have time to process all the orders", Igor Skryl, a sales manager at the only Ukrainian store that sells the book, told AFP. "People are writing and calling us non ... More

Hongkong Land presents 'Parallel Worlds: Where Art & Archaeology Collide'
HONG KONG.- Hongkong Land collaborates with the Bandung Geology Museum of Indonesia to present major upcoming exhibition Parallel Worlds: Where Art & Archaeology Collide, reconciling the realms of science and the arts. It's staged at The Rotunda, Exchange Square in Central from 1st to 18th September 2015. The exhibition brings large-scale fossil reproductions, as well as contemporary photography and sculptures by Indonesian artists Kinez Riza and Rudi Hartono under a singular platform, and is premised on an interweaving narrative of the past and present, offering a lens into the evolution of humanity. Parallel Worlds assembles 21 exhibits covering a number of geologic periods, and through a careful curation of contemporary artworks and a natural history collection communicates the inter-connectedness between two seemingly diverse disciplines. One of the key ... More

Hundreds protest smashing of 'Mephistopheles' figure in Saint Petersburg
SAINT PETERSBURG (AFP).- More than a thousand Russians rallied in Saint Petersburg on Sunday after a century-old bas relief of a mythical demon was destroyed amid fears of increasing religious intolerance under President Vladimir Putin. Last week, the figure of Mephistopheles was ripped down from the facade of a century-old building in Saint Petersburg. An obscure group calling itself the Cossacks of Saint Petersburg claimed responsibility. The seemingly religiously-motivated act of vandalism caused an outcry in the former imperial capital and police launched a probe. The figure of a bat-winged creature on Lakhtinskaya Street dated back to around 1910. By some accounts, the bas relief paid homage to legendary Russian opera singer Feodor Chaliapin famed for his role of Mephistopheles. ... More

New book presents Eric Maillet's entire body of personal photographic work
LONDON.- Water and nature occupy a very important place in Eric Maillet's works. Water is captured in many forms; snow, ice, bubbles... Maillet's images reduce nature to its simplest element allowing one to contemplate its unexpected aesthetic. The female body also holds an important place through his work and finds a harmony in the artist's nature-focused universe. Maillet's work has always taken into consideration that an open book or magazine invites the reader to look at two images simultaneously and this book presents his work in this way. Maillet chose the paradoxical words 'Silent' and 'Conversations' to reflect the relationship between his images used to create diptychs. He wanted to underline the exchange between each image and indicate that it is in the middle that things happen, causing us to ask ourselves questions. The photos are silent yet they tie together a long personal ... More



On a day like today, American photographer Helen Levitt was born
August 31, 1913. Helen Levitt (August 31, 1913 - March 29, 2009) was an American photographer. She was particularly noted for "street photography" around New York City, and has been called "the most celebrated and least known photographer of her time. She lived in New York City and remained active as a photographer for nearly 70 years. New York's "visual poet laureate" was notoriously private and publicity shy

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