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Other Criteria is at @expochicago booth 848 until Sunday 17th September #Damien Hirst #EduardoSarabia
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Harland Miller at Blain|Southern Berlin

April 29, 2016 by Mary

Tonight We Make History (P.S. I Can’t Be There) is Harland Miller’s first solo exhibition in Germany. Departing from his use of appropriated imagery, the exhibition comprises many new large-scale paintings that incorporate his own designs, which is a first for the artist. He takes formal and conceptual inspiration from the abstract geometrical covers of popular psychology books of the 60s and 70s, an era when positive messaging often masked societal neurosis.


Installation View, Harland Miller, Tonight We Make History (P.S. I Can't Be There), 2016
Harland Miller, Tonight We Make History (P.S. I Can't Be There), 2016
Courtesy Harland Miller and Blain|Southern
Photo: Jörg von Bruchhausen

Three-metre high paintings with titles such as Overcoming Optimism and Back on the Worry Beads occupy the main space of the gallery. Often the same text appears on different compositions, demonstrating how form and colour relationships can change the way in which titles are interpreted. Interspersed between the larger paintings, a number of smaller works act like punctuation marks. The sentiments of the artist’s phrases remain open enough to imbue every work with a different idiosyncratic significance to each individual viewer. Upstairs, a new body of the artist’s most iconic artworks, The Penguin Books Series paintings, are bought together including; High on Hope, I’ll Never Forget What I Can’t Remember and the titular Tonight We Make History (P.S. I Can’t Be There).


Installation View, Harland Miller, Tonight We Make History (P.S. I Can't Be There), 2016
Harland Miller, Tonight We Make History (P.S. I Can't Be There), 2016
Courtesy Harland Miller and Blain|Southern
Photo: Jörg von Bruchhausen

The exhibition marks twenty-five years since the artist lived in Berlin. He first visited in 1985 prior to the fall of the wall and the experience had a lasting impact on his practice. Staying in Kreuzberg and exploring the east of the city, he encountered many German paintings that incorporated prominent use of text as an integral part of the work. Unable to speak the language and thus understand such texts, Miller found the appearance of these words as imagery equally as effective as the written message. Having been advised against the use of typography in painting at art school in the UK, this discovery of a direct communication between type and image was a defining moment.

Blain|Southern, Potsdamer Straße 77-87, 10785 Berlin
30 April 2016 – 30 July 2016

Mat Collishaw: Folly!

April 22, 2016

This summer, Mat Collishaw will be presenting two new site-specific sculptures at the National Trust's Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal Water Garden in North Yorkshire as part of their Folly! programme.

Mat Collishaw has created two striking new installations for the follies in Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal - a National Trust World Heritage Site in Yorkshire. A co-commission between the Trust and Blain|Southern, the works draw upon the history of the buildings, creating optical illusions that echo ghosts of the follies past.

Situated in the 18th century landscape surrounding the abbey, the follies will be transformed by Collishaw’s immersive and captivating installations. The Banqueting House is the site for a major new 3D zoetrope titled Seria Ludo. The work is a glowing, strobe lit chandelier, covered with 186 carousing Lilliputian figures, conjuring up a scene of excitement and debauchery as complex engineering rouses a spiralling dervish of dissolute behaviour.

Serenely stationed at the edge of the garden’s Moon Ponds, the Temple of Piety will be the setting for a more tranquil work, The Pineal Eye. Echoing the circulat forms of the ponds outside, the mirrored domes conjure upan ethereal mirage of the Roman depiction of piety; a daughter feeding her imprisoned father from her breast - an illusion which mirrors the Georgian relief located on the rear Temple wall.

The canals, ponds and cascade offer pictorial beauty and also function as hydraulic balancing systems for the river Skell that flows through Fountains Abbey. Inspired by this form of release both of Collishaw's works;  Seria Ludo and The Pineal Eye reveal an explosion of tension, with themes that plumb into the follies' principles of pleasure and piety.

Folly! at Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal,
Ripon, HG4 3DY
April 23–October 30th 2016

Jane Simpson’s gallery launches a “Selection Box”

April 21, 2016 by Mary

Galerie Simpson, a non profit gallery, is a publishing label founded by artist Jane Simpson. Producing limited edition artworks made in close consultation with internationally renowned artists. 

The gallery will launch a Selection Box on the 22nd of April, 2016. It is a selection of 18 editions which have been created especially for this project and donated by the artists to help support the Swansea gallery. 


When someone buys a Selection Box, they will receive the artworks in a unique wooden box, only 50 of which have been created. The works featured in each box will go on show at the launch party, and offer a fascinating snapshot of the British art world today.

The combined art has been conservatively estimated as being worth around £4,000, and the first two to go on sale will cost half of that at £2,000 before rising to £3,000.

"It's nothing like the real value of the work, it's a massive discount," says Galerie Simpson owner Jane Simpson, pictured with pet dog Sonny, who points out that with Arts Council of Wales's Collectorplan, anyone could can start their own collection of contemporary art for around £200 a month.

"It will pay for the rent, upkeep, and a small amount for the exhibitions for the next three years," she adds.


Production methods for the works included range from watercolours, lino cuts, wood block and silkscreen to gold plated sculptures, cast resin, vegetable prints, photo collage and digital prints, many of which are made in Swansea by Swansea Print Workshop.

"There is truly something for everyone in this cornucopia, which contains similar voices and overlapping interests, each work featuring hand finishing or multiple layers of creation to create something truly special."

Jane Simpson herself has been a leading figure in the British art world for two decades, having been championed as a graduate by Damien Hirst and featured in seminal exhibitions including Some Went Mad, Some Ran Away in 1994.
In order to create the Selection Box, she got in touch with friends she had made during years of being immersed in the British art scene, and the result reads like a who's who of important turn-of-the-century artists.


They include Fiona BannerSir Peter Blake, Angela de la Cruz, Abigail Fallis, Tom Gidley, Georgie Hopton, Rachel Howard, Des Hughes, Gary Hume, Catrin Saran James, Michael Landy, Simon Periton, Jamie Reid, Sarah Staton, Gavin Turk, Rachel Whiteread, Clare Woods and Jane Simpson.

"These are well-known artists, many of whom have previously shown at the gallery, and I've been delighted by the spirit of goodwill in which these pieces have been donated," says Jane.

"I want the gallery to have a future — it's championing local artists in an environment that wouldn't look out of place in the West End of London," she says.

The money raised will also free Jane up to make more of the sculptures for which she is best known: by combining freezer technology with household items, she has been able to create widely acclaimed sculptures that evolve and grow as the ice forms. After years living in London, she feels her new base in Swansea has given her the perfect environment in which to be creative again.

"Since coming back to Swansea the art scene is fabulous, really active and positive, especially with the support of Coastal Housing," she says of the local talent such as Catrin Saran James who features in the box.

"But I've reached a point where I desperately want to make my sculptures again — I feel the time is right, and I'm in the right place."

Art on a Postcard best of 2015 show raises money for charity

April 12, 2016 by Mary

20 Best Cards of Art on a Postcard curated and hosted by Jealous. The show offers brand new print editions based on the finest postcard designs contributed to Art on a Postcard over 2015.

The portfolio is comprised of 20 prints featuring internationally acclaimed artists such as Gavin Turk and Rachel Howard and aims to spread further awareness of the for The Hepatitis C Trust and raise money to fund research and support.

Art on a Postcard raises money for The Hepatitis C Trust - the national UK charity for hepatitis C. Founded, led and run by people with personal experience of the effects of hepatitis C, Art on a Postcard's main objective is to eliminate hepatitis C as a major health concern by 2030.


Rachel Howard, Murder or Suicide?
Edition of 50. 1 colour screenprint with varnish overlay on Somerset Satin 300gsm paper, deckled edge £195, unframed.

The exhibition runs from 12th – 24th April with a Private View on Tuesday 12th April from 6.30pm – 9.30pm at Jealous East Gallery; all are welcome.

The exhibition will also feature new work from the on going Postcard Lottery, which will be exclusively available through the CultureLabel website. For only £10 you will have the chance to win an original postcard by a host of artists, including Ben Eine, Fin DAC, Eelus and Gavin Turk. Past postcards have reached prices of £4,200 at auction! We will be showing a limited edition run of deckchairs featuring designs by the artists who have donated works to Art on a Postcard.


Gavin Turk, Untitled
Edition of 50. Archival Print on Somerset Satin Enhanced 330 gsm paper, 22 x 21 cm, deckled edge £175, unframed.

The portfolio features the works of: Chantal Joffe, David Shrigley, Mick Rooney RA, Carol Robertson, Mark Peppé, John Wragg RA, Vanessa Gardiner, Gavin Turk, Ray Richardson, Carl Moore, Simone Lia, Danny O’Connor, Robert James Clarke, Rachel Howard, Ceal Warnants, The Connor Brothers, Dougie Wallace, David Shillinglaw, Tyler Spangler and Anita Klein.

Eduardo Sarabia receives the Mike Kelley Foundation Grant

April 11, 2016 by Mary


Eduardo Sarabia, Puerto Vallarta, 2004, Digital C-print on Fujiflex Crystal Archive, 42 x 55 inches. © Eduardo Sarabia, 2016. Photo courtesy of the artist and The Mistake Room, Los Angeles.

Launched in June of last year, the Artist Project Grants seek to further Mike Kelley’s philanthropic work and honour his legacy by supporting innovative projects with visual artists at L.A. non-profit institutions and organisations. The goal is to benefit both visual artists and arts organisations alike and to support compelling and inventive projects in any medium, particularly work that is under-known, or has proven difficult to make or to fund.

The 2016 grant recipients include both established and new organisations, and their projects represent a diverse mix of media and content. The supported works range from a series of new commissions by members of the Echo Park Film Center Co-Op, honouring their unsung efforts at this unique volunteer- driven organisation, to a collaboration with artist Rosten Woo and Los Angeles Poverty Department (LAPD) on how zoning codes disenfranchise Downtown communities.

“Since 1985, we’ve been making art that connects the experience of people living in poverty in the Skid Row community to the social forces that shape their lives, in other words, creating citizen artist witnesses," explained LAPD Founding Artistic Director John Malpede. “With the Kelley Foundation grant we’ll be addressing new threats to the area’s hard won affordable housing, inviting both new and old residents of a quickly gentrifying Downtown to examine, question, and imagine how decisions get made and how our city gets created.”


Installation View of Eduardo Sarabia at Instituto Cultural Cabañas, Guadalajara, Mexico, 2014. © Eduardo Sarabia, 2016. Photo courtesy of the artist and The Mistake Room, Los Angeles.

The Mistake Room will bring Los Angeles-born, Guadalajara-based Eduardo Sarabia back to the city for an innovative survey show that will weave together the artist’s previous projects in a complex narrative video and installation environment. The project’s deeply self-reflective nature will provide Sarabia with a rare and risky opportunity—a chance to explore in-depth the meaning and relevance of his artistic work to date.

Raised in East Los Angeles and now based in Guadalajara, Eduardo Sarabia explores complex moments of cultural contact, using storytelling, mythology, popular culture, music, spirituality, and social conventions as metaphors for broader geopolitical contexts. His “survey” show in September 2017 at The Mistake Room will take the form of a narrative video that will bring together all of the artist’s previous projects and characters in a series of interconnected stories. Sarabia will collaborate with an architect to transform TMR into a series of theatrical vignettes—a Mayan temple, a bar, a jungle in Southern Mexico, and a Border Patrol interrogation room—in which the objects and edited versions of the video will be installed.

“This project will be the boldest endeavor I’ve ever undertaken, both formally and conceptually, bringing together ten years of work and five years of research in a new kind of 'total artwork,’” said Sarabia. “It's not an easy project, and without the fearless support of The Mistake Room and now the generous grant from the Kelley Foundation, I don’t think it would be feasible at all. I'm so grateful and excited."


Eduardo Sarabia, Desert Daze, Oil on linen, 73 x 100 inches. © Eduardo Sarabia, 2016. Photo courtesy of the artist and The Mistake Room, Los Angeles.

The Mike Kelley Foundation for the Arts seeks to further Kelley’s philanthropic work through grants for innovative projects that reflect his multifaceted artistic practice. The Foundation also preserves the artist’s legacy more broadly and advances the understanding of his life and creative achievements. The artist established the non-profit Foundation in 2007.

The work of artist Mike Kelley (1954-2012) embraced performance, installation, drawing, painting, video, sound works and sculpture. Kelley began his career in the late 1970s with solo performances, image/text works, and gallery and site-specific installations. He came to prominence in the 1980s with a series of sculptures composed of common craft materials. The artist’s later work addressed architecture and filmic narratives using the theory of repressed memory syndrome coupled with sustained biographic and pseudo-biographic inquiry into his own aesthetic and social history. Regarded as one of the most influential artists of our time, Kelley produced a body of deeply innovative work in dialogue with American popular culture as well as both modernist and alternative traditions.