Though news tends to get ascribed to particular events happening on a certain day at a certain time, a look through 2015 reveals that much of what made the headlines was a continuation or culmination of events that have unfolded over a number of years: the Syrian conflict, the march to marriage equality, the debt crisis in Greece, the Black Lives Matter movement. Though not “art news,” these and other stories touched the lives of many people, including artists. Here we highlight nine whose work can help parse the year’s biggest stories from a perspective not usually found in the columns of a newspaper’s front page.
Pulling from a year’s worth of travel, insight from some of the world’s most influential curators and collectors, and early intel on upcoming exhibitions, we’ve skimmed the top of emerging art to bring you the 16 artists to look out for in 2016.
This year’s most talked-about and game-changing institutional shows have revisited overlooked artists, cemented the positions of two of 20th-century art’s profoundest painters, and brought overdue attention to one of Latin America’s most important artists. They have also catapulted two emerging artists to the mainstream, harnessed the power of technology, and asked: What is American art today?
John Bisbee (previously) has worked with nails as a sculptural medium since he accidentally toppled a bucket of them years ago and was astonished to see how they remained intact, rusted and fused into a single object. Every since, he's been hammering nails of varying size into complex patte
Gathering spare pieces of metal, John Brown assembles his findings into sculptures of colorful butterflies, insects, and birds. Although the assemblages are formed from salvaged materials like nails and bicycle chains, the pieces somehow remain delicate, wings appearing just as thin as a butterf
Customs brokers are now disengaged in the clearance of goods from Turkey, told the radio station "Moscow speaking" about an unspoken ban on TCF imports of goods from that country. One of the interlocutors of the radio station that is engaged in the import of products said, in an interview to "Moscow speaking", that today they did not accept the customs Declaration for the issue of Turkish goods of all categories and recommend the carriers to issue a re-export. "Any kind of official paper was not shown to anybody, but the point is that for the goods today, the Turkish issue was impossible. The machine that is used is slowing down, and for those that already arrived, a re-export was issued. The goods that arrived by air, are also experiencing the same problem," the source added. Source in the Federal customs service said to "Moscow speaking" that the customs officers gave the order of 100% screening of cargo from Turkey, and then to leave them at the warehouse of temporary storage. We are talking about all types of transportation.
The Barrett Barrera Gallery in St. Louis, MO, has opened a unique exhibit of art made from human hair, bones and teeth. The “Darwinian Voodoo” exhibition features clothes and household items - if you can digest this.
American artist Trevor Paglen may have more in common with whistleblower Edward Snowden or journalist Glenn Greenwald than he does with other contemporary artists. How do you categorize an artist who works like an investigative journalist and data scientist? In his own words, Paglen’s artistic project is to create “new metaphors” for the “invisible war”—the weaponization of space, the militarization of the internet, mass surveillance, and counterintelligence efforts by U.S. and foreign governments over the past 15 years, most of which remain classified. In 2015 we know the surveillance state is paradoxically as present as it is invisible, and in his past two solo shows at Metro Pictures, Paglen has gone to impressive lengths—technically and through exhaustive research—to make it visible for us. He built a telescopic lens to capture U.S. intelligence from 30 miles away; he modeled the orbits of unclaimed government satellites from TLE files sourced from amateur astronomers; and trained to scuba dive in order to take underwater images of fiber-optic communications cables tapped by the U.S. government. Paglen himself is at the technical cutting-edge of both photographic and software technology, making his process almost impossible to do justice to in our framework.
Brazilian artist Arruda’s abstract paintings have long transfixed the São Paulo art scene. Since 2009, when he held his first solo exhibition in the city, the artist has inspired a rapid collector base. (His waiting list was at one point rumored to be 100 names long.) Arruda had a strong 2015, curating a show at Herald St, London and receiving solo exhibitions at Lulu in Mexico City, and PIVÔ in São Paulo, among other highlights.
His compositions are as much lightscapes as landscapes; the artist forgoes scale for subtlety, exploring the luminous cadences of beaches, forests, and sunsets in relatively diminutive works that sometimes harken back to Whistler and Monet. They are frequently untitled, however, and his exhibitions often share the name “Deserto-Modelo,” evidence of the artist’s attempt to unanchor his art from any discernible place or context. One untitled work characteristically depicts a beach composed of criss-crossing brushstrokes, as if pulled this way and that by a wind felt only within the canvas.
In some ways, this year’s art news marched to a familiar, though by no means dull, rhythm: Auction house executives came and went, lawsuits were brought and settled, and all while the price of works at auction reached heretofore unimaginable heights. Yet, though it seems as though sometimes this beat is heard only by those inside the white cube, this year the art world had to contend with broader political and social issues from ISIS’s ongoing destruction of cultural heritage to free speech and labor relations. Here, we bring you the 20 key stories as they unfolded throughout the year.
Depth is not a concept immediately sparked when we think of thin pieces of paper, however artist Angela Glajcar gives the typically 2D medium a new sculptural life—stringing together dozens of sheets to create cavernous works often lit from their core. The trailing sculptures are ripped haphazar
The brain has been called the most complex structure in the universe, but it may also be the most beautiful. One artist's work captures both the aesthetics and sophistication of this most enigmatic organ.
An unmanned military underwater vehicle rigged with explosives was spotted on the seabed in the vicinity of the Nord Stream gas pipeline in the Baltics on Friday, Swedish media report. The device is expected to be disarmed on November 9.
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