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Eclectic history of plywood revealed in new Victoria & Albert Museum exhibition

Used to construct everything from a tube to house an experimental elevated railway in 1867 New York to hatboxes, tea chests, surfboards and skateboards, plywood has been embraced by designers, architects and engineers; each successive generation finding ever-more innovative ways to shape, mould, cut and fix it.

LONDON.- Light, strong, affordable and versatile, plywood is the unlikely material behind an eclectic array of groundbreaking designs to be celebrated in a world-first exhibition at the V&A this summer. From the fastest and highest-flying aeroplane of WWII, the de Havilland Mosquito, to the downloadable selfassembly WikiHouse, more than 120 objects have been brought together in an exploration of how the often-overlooked product has helped create the modern world. Fragments of layered board have been found in ancient Egyptian tombs, but it was the advent of mass production in the nineteenth century that saw plywood’s adaptability and potential fully exploited. Used to construct everything from a tube to house an experimental elevated railway in 1867 New York to hatboxes, tea chests, surfboards and skateboards, plywood has been embraced by designers, architects and engineers; each successive generation finding ever-more innovative ways ... More

The Best Photos of the Day

The National Portrait Gallery opens its first exhibition of old master European portrait drawings   C/O Berlin opens exhibition of works by Josef Koudelka   A present from Sir Winston Churchill to Vivien Leigh set to be unveiled at Sotheby's in London

Sir John Godsalve by Hans Holbein the Younger c.1532-4 Royal Collection Trust © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2017.

LONDON.- The National Portrait Gallery opened its first exhibition of old master European portrait drawings, many rarely seen, and some not displayed for decades, today Thursday 13 July 2017. But while the works on display are by some of the outstanding masters of the Renaissance and Baroque, the drawings in The Encounter: Drawings from Leonardo to Rembrandt (13 July – 22 October 2017) have been selected not only because they are extraordinary records of an artist’s skill and a sitter’s appearance, but because they appear to capture a moment of connection, an encounter between an artist and a sitter. Some of the people depicted in these portraits can be identified, such as the emperor’s chaplain or the king’s clerk, but many are the faces from the street – the nurse, the shoemaker, and the artist’s friends and pupils in the ... More

Czechoslovakia, 1968.

BERLIN.- C/O Berlin presents the exhibition entitled Josef Koudelka . Invasion / Exiles / Wall from July 13th to September 10th, 2017. Prague, Wenceslas Square, August 22, 1968: An arm is thrust into the picture. The watch on its wrist indicates the time. In the days before, tanks of the Warsaw Pact had entered the city to the screech of tank tracks on the cobblestones. This photograph by Josef Koudelka fits chronologically into his series Invasion, in which he shows the passionate resistance of his compatriots to the Red Army’s determination to quell by bloody means the democratic fervor of the Prague Spring. But it is also the first photograph in his book Exiles, published twenty years later, in 1988, by Robert Delpire. 1968 was a pivotal year—both in the West and in the East. Koudelka’s photographs leave a lasting impression of these historical events, conveying a vibrant immediacy and intimacy with the situation and the d ... More

Sir Winston Churchill, Roses in a Glass Vase. Estimate Ł70,000-100,000. Courtesy Sotheby’s.

LONDON.- A still-life of roses by Sir Winston Churchill, given to screen-legend Vivien Leigh, will be unveiled for the first time at Sotheby’s in London tomorrow (17 July 2017). Never seen in public before, the painting reveals the little-known story of the deep and long-lasting friendship between the Prime Minister and the legendary star of Gone with the Wind. Depicting flowers picked from Churchill’s beloved garden at Chartwell, his country home in Kent, Roses in a Glass Vase was gifted to Vivien in 1951, during a midnight supper hosted by Churchill on the birthday of Leigh’s husband, Sir Laurence Olivier. Churchill’s flower paintings were given only to those dearest to him and Leigh treasured the present so greatly that the work hung on the wall opposite her bed. Fittingly, on Churchill’s 90th birthday she sent him a bouquet as a gift. Estimated at Ł70,000-100,000, ... More

Monographic exhibition devoted to Georg Baselitz opens at the Guggenheim in Bilbao   Largest anthological exhibition by Christian Boltanski organized in Italy on view in Bologna   Alvar Aalto's organic design idiom developed in interaction with contemporary visual artists

Georg Baselitz, Eagle 53 – Heroe 65 (Remix), 2007. Oil on canvas, 300 x 250 cm. Privately owned © Georg Baselitz, 2017. Photo: Jochen Littkemann, Berlin.

BILBAO.- The Guggenheim Museum Bilbao is presenting Georg Baselitz. Heroes , a monographic exhibition devoted to a series of paintings that depict vulnerable, defeated "heroes", created in 1965/66 by one of the most influential artists of our time, Georg Baselitz. This show, organized by the Städel Museum Frankfurt in collaboration with the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, the Moderna Museet Stockholm, and the Palazzo delle Esposizioni in Rome, has assembled 60 paintings, drawings, and sketches from the series for the first time. Baselitz’s monumental, frenzied, defiant figures are an energetic statement of the artist’s selfassertion and identity that ran contrary to the prevailing artistic and ideological trends of his time. Establishing an ideal continuity between past and present, the exhibition in Bilbao (as in Rome) concludes with a selection of paintings from the Remix cycle that Georg ... More

Christian Boltanski, Anime. Di luogo in luogo, installation view at MAMbo – Museo d'Arte Moderna di Bologna, 2017. Photo: Matteo Monti.

BOLOGNA.- Until November 12, 2017 MAMbo – Museo d'Arte Moderna di Bologna presents Anime. Di luogo in luogo, the largest anthological exhibition by Christian Boltanski organized in Italy. The exhibition, curated by Danilo Eccher, is the heart of the homonymous special project which presents the work of this great protagonist of the international art scene through an itinerary with different simultaneous interventions in different areas of the city. Born in Paris in 1944, like many European artists born during or just after the end of World War II, Boltanski has to deal with his urge to elaborate the deep trauma caused by the war and the sense of tragedy embedded in history. In an attempt to represent the feeling of loss, he uses methods that are typical of human sciences such as anthropology, sociology, and archiving to create a system of memories based on the meticulous collection of traces of what has been lost. The exhibition dis ... More

Pendant Lamp A 331, ”Beehive”, Alvar Aalto, 1953. © Vitra Design Museum, 2014. Photo: Vitra Design Museum/Andreas Jung.

HELSINKI.- Alvar Aalto (1898–1976) is the most internationally famous Finnish architect and designer. Alvar Aalto – Art and the Modern Form opens up new perspectives into Aalto's life and work. The comprehensive exhibition illustrates how Aalto's thinking and design idiom developed in interaction with contemporary visual artists. In addition to presenting Aalto's extensive oeuvre, works are also being featured from his close friends and modernist masters, such as the American Alexander Calder and the Frenchman Fernand Léger. The exhibition also highlights the role of the Artek furniture and design company, established in 1935, as a contributor to the Finnish art scene. The exhibition is produced by the Vitra Design Museum, in cooperation with the Alvar Aalto Museum and the Ateneum Art Museum. "Alvar Aalto's work showed a broad understanding of the arts. His circle of acquaintances included a large ... More

First exhibition to examine the influence of Constructivism on Australian art on view in Melbourne   George A. Romero, father of the zombie movie, dead at 77   Canada's unique heritage and diversity told from a contemporary perspective

George Johnson, Construction With Brown Triangle, 1986. Acrylic on canvas, 186 x 140 cm. Courtesy of the artist and Charles Nodrum Gallery © the artist.

MELBOURNE.- For more than one hundred years, artists have drawn inspiration from the early twentieth-century avant-garde movement Constructivism. Originating in Russia in the years immediately before and after the 1917 revolution, then spreading to places throughout the world, Constructivism’s abstract forms, utopian ideals and vision of art’s vital role in building a new society have continued to act as a beacon for artists of successive generations in many countries. This extensive survey (over 200 works across three galleries) explores how Australian visual artists have responded to this ground breaking modernist movement, and reveals its enduring call upon their imaginations from the 1930s to the present day. The excitement of new formal discoveries, the integration of ideas across the various art forms, and the strong role taken by women artists who, unusually for the time, ... More

Shot in black-and-white on a budget of just over $100,000, "Night of the Living Dead" daringly featured black actor Duane Jones as its lead in a script about a group of people attempting to survive an attack by re-animated corpses.

WASHINGTON (AFP).- US filmmaker George A. Romero, whose 1968 cult classic "Night of the Living Dead" spawned the zombie movie genre, died on Sunday aged 77. Tributes poured in from Hollywood and beyond for the legendary director who according to his manager Chris Roe passed away "listening to the score of The Quiet Man, one of his all-time favorite films." "He died peacefully in his sleep, following a brief but aggressive battle with lung cancer, and leaves behind a loving family, many friends, and a filmmaking legacy that has endured, and will continue to endure, the test of time," Chris Roe added in a brief statement. Shot in black-and-white on a budget of just over $100,000, "Night of the Living Dead" daringly featured black actor Duane Jones as its lead in a script about a group ... More

Installation view of the Canadian and Indigenous Galleries at the National Gallery of Canada.

OTTAWA.- After many years of planning and nine months of construction the National Gallery of Canada has opened the new Canadian and Indigenous Galleries. It is the first major gallery transformation at the NGC since the building’s inauguration in 1988. Internationally renowned museum design firm Studio Adrien Gardčre reconfigured the galleries to create spacious rooms that are ideally suited to present close to 800 works of art from the NGC’s collections of Canadian and Indigenous art, and photographs, alongside loans of historical Indigenous sculptures and objects by Inuit, Métis, and First Nation artists. The transformed galleries incorporate the most up to date museum LED lighting technology, accessibility standards, and custom-made display cases that bring artworks closer to viewers, creating an enhanced visitor experience. “The newly transformed galleries provide the ideal setting to tell a ... More

Occasional Geometries: Rana Begum curates the Arts Council Collection   Patina Gallery in Santa Fe opens a photography exhibition by Doug Menuez   Survey exhibition of the work of Assemble on view at the Architekturzentrum Wien

Tomma Abts, Heit, 2011. Arts Council Collection, Southbank Centre, London © the artist.

WAKEFIELD.- Yorkshire Sculpture Park presents Occasional Geometries, an exhibition selected largely from the Arts Council Collection by Bangladeshi-born artist and guest curator Rana Begum. Begum has established an internationally respected practice creating immaculately conceived and constructed abstract installations that challenge the distinction between two and three-dimensional practice, sculpture and painting. A scroll through Begum’s Instagram feed immediately reveals a particular personal interest and delight in the occasional geometries of life. This might be the definition of an air vent, the architecture of a stairwell articulated through light and shadow, or the abstract pattern of a handrail. Begum says, of a childhood memory: ‘One particular day as a child in Bangladesh reading the Quran at the local mosque, in a tiny room dappled with morning light. The light and the repetition of recitation, all familiar ... More

Steve Jobs Explaining Ten-Year Technology Development Cycles, Sonoma, California, 1986. Doug Menuez.

SANTA FE, NM.- For photographer Doug Menuez, the most creative period in the career of Steve Jobs, the man who gave the smartphone to 200 million Americans, was a noble cause that reset the trajectory of the human race. To illustrate, he recalls a moment as he ended a talk on the computer revolution in Silicon Valley during of the late-1980s and early-1990s. “I had one guy stand up at one of my lectures,” Menuez says. “He started crying and said he would go home, quit his job and start doing something important with his life. “The Silicon Valley story is one of blood, guts and money. It’s about the future of the human race, and we have to have a voice.” In that spirit, Patina Gallery in Santa Fe announces a photography exhibition by Menuez that opened Friday, July 14, 2017, in the gallery at 131 W. Palace Ave. Fearless Genuis: The Digital Revolution in Silicon Valley will ... More

Yardhouse, 2014. © Assemble.

VIENNA.- The Architekturzentrum Wien presents a world premiere with a survey exhibition of the work of Assemble: 'Assemble. How We Build'. In 2015 the London-based collective of 18 equal members won the coveted Turner Prize, Europe's most prestigious award for contemporary art. The architecture of Assemble is a unique combination of social activation with poetic spaces, and environmental with economic sustainability. The way we build and the relationships between how things are made and how materials are assembled is a reflection of a society's social, economic and political situation — as Assemble acknowledge. Their projects are prototypes for different ways societies can build. Even their debut project The Cineroleum, a temporary cinema erected by the collective at a disused petrol station, attracted widespread attention. Shortly after the completion of their various studies at Cambridge University, The Cineroleum marked the founding of As ... More

More News
Ecuador designers reinvent indigenous style for modern age
RIOBAMBA (AFP).- After years of taking a backseat to Western style, indigenous fashion is re-emerging in Ecuador, thanks to a new generation of designers who are re-imagining traditional clothes. "Make the turn snappy!" says Juana Chicaiza, who founded the modeling agency "Awkis y Nustas" -- "Princes and Queens" in the Quechua language. She is teaching her young charges how to best show off the "anaco," a traditional Andean skirt, on the catwalks. A former beauty queen with long dark hair, Chicaiza -- a member of the Puruha indigenous group -- was mocked at a pageant because of her traditional garb. The experience inspired the 32-year-old to open her agency in 2013 and "strengthen the identity" of the Puruha on the runways, where models now sashay in outfits that mix "the Western and the ancestral." Latin American agencies generally seek models with ... More

Exhibition offers a fresh insight into the work of two pioneers of Soviet nonconformist literature
MOSCOW.- Garage Museum of Contemporary Art is presenting an exhibition of documents relating to the poetry of Igor Kholin (1920–1999) and Genrikh Sapgir (1928–1999), offering fresh insight into the work of two pioneers of Soviet nonconformist literature. Their names are often encountered together: in literary analysis, in publications on Russian contemporary art, and on children’s book shelves. Kholin and Sapgir met in 1952 and became close allies. Both were members of the first postwar unofficial community of artists and poets, known as the Lianozovo group, and pupils of its leader, artist Evgeny Kropivnitsky. They worked alongside some of the key names in Russian postwar art, including Oskar Rabin, Lydia Masterkova, and Vladimir Nemukhin. Bohemians of the 1960s and 1970s, their avant-garde poetry was unpublishable until the advent ... More

Framer Framed opens exhibition of works by Marjan Teeuwen
AMSTERDAM.- What does it mean to be forced to flee your home and become internally displaced? What is the meaning of the word ‘home’ in the context of war, diaspora, exclusion, and displacement? these questions are central to the exhibition Home, curated by Meta Knol, with the photographic works of Destroyed house Gaza (2016/2017) by Dutch artist Marjan Teeuwen, and videoblogs made by Palestinian photographer Ezz al Zanoon and journalist Rawan Mahady. In September and October 2016, Teeuwen stayed in the Gaza strip, part of the occupied Palestinian territories, and created an on-site monumental architectonic installation. as an artist Teeuwen is interested in the human resilience necessary to constantly rebuild their environment, even in the most destructive of circumstances. in Gaza, the houses of Palestinians are continuously destroyed ... More

Belfast Exposed exhibits works by Gábor Arion Kudász
BELFAST.- In the years following the death of Hungarian artist Emese Kudász, her son Gábor Arion Kudász catalogued her entire estate and photographed it to secure her fast-fading trace in time, so as to establish a guide to the workings of memory. The method of the photographic research disrupted the order of things she had created, the context that surrounded her and was distinctively her own. Through these cracks hidden aspects of her personality emerged, together with a previously unrealized coherence among her objects; it is no longer possible to tell whether these had existed before or were only the result of the intervention. Whatever has been in the ground for a long time, say archaeologists, has probably found its best place there. What they mean is that while the excavation may promote knowledge, an important part of the context ... More

Solo show by Portuguese artist Aires de Gameiro opens at The Switch
LISBON.- The Switch presents “PARALLAX” by Portuguese Artist Aires de Gameiro, curated by Henrique Menezes. From July 7th until July 23rd 2017, Aires de Gameiro reveals an installation specially conceived for Cabinet de L’Art – the gallery’s front room. Expanding the geometrical essence of his work, three sculptures and a series of paintings are conceptually and physically blended, borrowing the individualities of each technique through hybrid perceptions. The term “parallax” refers to the way an object’s position or direction seems to change depending on its viewing angle. This apparent displacement has been used in distinct domains of knowledge such as astrology, philosophy, linguistic to web design, as well as psychoanalysis and photography. In “PARALLAX”, Aires de Gameiro reveals his quest for the objects’ inner strength and visual esthetics. By rearranging processes, the Ar ... More

Parrish Art Museum presents a mixed-media installation of monumental prints and immersive LED walls
WATER MILL, NY.- Platform is the Parrish Art Museum’s open-ended invitation to a single artist to consider the entire Museum as a potential site for works that transcend disciplinary boundaries, encouraging new ways to experience art, architecture, and the landscape. This year, Platform features multimedia artist Clifford Ross, who engages with several areas of the Museum, including the exterior south wall of the Museum, interior entrance lobby and locations within the Parrish collection galleries, for his mixed media installation, Light | Waves. “Clifford Ross’s fascination with the ocean off the shore of Long Island gains new meaning with his immersive installation at the Parrish that places the viewer into the midst of crashing hurricane waves in a building situated between two bodies of water,” said Parrish Art Museum Director Terrie Sultan. “Using new media of his own invention, ... More

Award-winning Numbers in Nature exhibit expands to Philadelphia
PHILADELPHIA, PA.- Luci Creative, a full-service museum creative agency collaborated with the Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago (MSI), Leviathan, and Ravenswood Studio in 2014 to develop, design, build, and install Numbers in Nature: A Mirror Maze, the transformative and award-winning exhibit. Building on that success, the partners have come together again to transform the permanent exhibit into an 8,000 square-foot traveling exhibit. The fully-immersive, interactive, and playful experience reveals the predictable math behind recurring patterns found in the natural and man-made world. The exhibit begins its tour at The Franklin Institute in Philadelphia. (Now open through September 4, 2017.) “We’ve seen an incredible response to A Mirror Maze: Numbers in Nature from guests, with an overwhelming number of adults noting this exhibit opens ... More

'Connecting Stories: The Library of Birmingham and the British Library' exhibition now open
LONDON.- The Library of Birmingham and the British Library announce the opening of Connecting Stories: Our British Asian Heritage, (15 July to 4 November 2017, hashtag #connectingstories) an exhibition and community project celebrating the important role South Asian culture has played in forming Britain and Birmingham’s history and identity. The archive material in the exhibition focuses on the countries of present day India, Bangladesh and Pakistan. Connecting Stories explores Britain’s enduring connections with South Asia, from historical trading links stretching back 400 years, to the impact of migration and settlement in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. The rich and intertwining history of South Asia and the Midlands is being illustrated by photographs, letters, posters, paintings, documents, oral history, music and ephemera, demonstrating ... More

The tranquility of Claude Monet's fabled gardens rediscovered in 'Stephen Shore: The Giverny Portfolio'
VANCOUVER.- The Vancouver Art Gallery is presenting Stephen Shore: The Giverny Portfolio, on view until October 1, 2017. Stephen Shore: The Giverny Portfolio features twenty-five photographs by contemporary American photographer Stephen Shore produced during several visits to Impressionist painter Claude Monet’s famous gardens at Giverny, France. Showing concurrently with the exhibition Claude Monet’s Secret Garden (June 24 to October 1, 2017), Stephen Shore: The Giverny Portfolio offers a contemporary perspective on the tranquility originally captured in Monet’s iconic paintings. “We are thrilled to be showing Stephen Shore’s entire series from Giverny for the very first time, work by a photographer whose remarkable vision has shaped the evolution of the art of photography over the last several decades,” says Gallery Director, Kathleen S. Bartels. ... More

A look behind-the-scenes of Darius Frank’s Things I Love/d

On a day like today, German-American painter and caricaturist Lyonel Feininger was born
July 17, 1871. Lyonel Charles Feininger (July 17, 1871 - January 13, 1956) was a German-American painter, and a leading exponent of Expressionism. He also worked as a caricaturist and comic strip artist. In this image: Hellmut Seemann president of the foundation "Weimarer Klassik", right, talks with William Timken, US ambassador to Germany, left, about drawings of artist Lyonel Feininger after the opening of the "Feininger" exhibition at the Bauhaus museum in Weimar, eastern Germany, Saturday, Feb. 18, 2006.

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