Art in the Age of Black Power

SOUL OF A NATION: ART IN THE AGE OF BLACK POWER, Tate Modern, until 22nd October 2017

 

Elizabeth Catlett
Black Unity, 1968
Mahogany wood
Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Bentonville, Arkansas, © Catlett Mora Family Trust/DACS, London / VAGA, NY 2017

 

I am grateful to John Kirkwood to visiting and writing about this exhibition:

 

It is quite startling to enter this exhibition and be confronted by copies of the Black Panther newspaper – the printed form of the ideology behind the Black Panther movement of the early sixties which wasn’t always engaged in peaceful or lawful pursuits.

Faith Ringgold (b.1930)
American People Series #20: Die, 1967
Oil on canvas,1828 x 3657 mm
The Museum of Modern Art, New York. Purchase; and gift of the Modern Women’s Fund, © Faith Ringgold

There are images in varying media of many of the personalities involved in the rise of the awareness of Black Power including Aretha Franklin, Muhammad Ali and Toni Morrison.  On the more political side we have of course Martin Luther King and Malcolm X who has a painting dedicated to him by Jack Whitten on public display for the first time.  There is a fragment from The Wall of Respect in Chicago which became a powerful symbol of the Civil Rights movement.

Andy Warhol
Muhammad Ali, 1978
Synthetic polymer and silkscreen inks on canvas, 1016 x 1016 mm
Private collection
© 2017 The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc. / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York and DACS, London

This is a timely and far-reaching exhibition and a major celebration of a crucial but perhaps overlooked area of American art history when black artists rose to the challenge of increasing their visibility and saying out loud and clear ‘We are here!’

Roy DeCarava
Couple Walking,1979
Photograph, gelatin silver print on paper, 356 x 279 mm
© Courtesy Sherry DeCarava and the DeCarava Archives

http://www.tate.org.uk

Royal Gifts

Royal Gifts – the Summer Opening of the State Rooms, Buckingham Palace, until 1st October 2017

Australian State Coach
Royal Collection Trust/© Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2017. Photographer: David Cripps

From the moment you arrive at the Grand Entrance and espy the Australian State Coach, a gift to Her Majesty in 1988 from the people of Australia to mark the Australian Bicentenary, you know you are in for something rather exciting. Indeed many of the State Rooms are transformed by special displays of over two hundred gifts that have been presented to The Queen in the sixty-five years of her reign.

‘Royal Gifts’, the special exhibition at the Summer Opening of Buckingham Palace.
Credit: Royal Collection Trust / (c) Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2017.

You will discover a remarkable cross section of items and every gift reflects the donor whether a town, organisation or country.  Each in its own way is uniquely special. I am not going to mention examples because it is something to be experienced in person. I found it all fascinating and engrossing in a way that I had not expected but will remember for a long time.

A Royal Collection Trust member of staff adjusts the Vessel of Friendship, a model of the ‘treasure ship’ sailed by the 15th-century Chinese navigator and diplomat Zeng He. The model was presented to Her Majesty by President Xi Jinping of the People’s Republic of China during the State Visit to Buckingham Palace in October 2015.
Royal Collection Trust / © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2017.

 

Members of Royal Collection Trust staff put the finishing touches to a display of gifts from around the United Kingdom as part of ‘Royal Gifts’, the special exhibition at the Summer Opening of Buckingham Palace.
Credit: Royal Collection Trust / (c) Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2017.

In the Music Room is a charming display to mark the twentieth anniversary of the death of Diana, Princess of Wales. Many of the objects and mementos on and around her desk from her Sitting Room in Kensington Palace were chosen by the The Duke of Cambridge and Prince Harry.

A tribute to Diana, Princess of Wales in the Music Room, one of the State Rooms open to the public as part of the Summer Opening of Buckingham Palace. The centrepiece of the display is the desk at which The Princess worked in her sitting room at Kensington Palace, writing letters and reading official briefings and correspondence.
Credit: Royal Collection Trust / (c) Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2017

www.royalcollection.org.uk

Masterpiece London 2017 – Introduction

Masterpiece London 2017, South Grounds, The Royal Hospital, Chelsea, London SW3, 29th June – 5th July 2017

MASTERPIECE PRESENTS
Iván Navarro
Impenetrable Room
2017
Courtesy Paul Kasmin Gallery

Since its inception this fair has grown into one of the most must-visit events of the art and antiques year. Some thirty-seven thousand visitors last year! It attracts museum directors and private collectors from all over the world to see the artworks shown by a hundred and fifty international dealers. The artworks range from antiquity to the present time. The Royal Bank of Canada is once again the principal sponsor

This year the new MASTERPIECE PRESENTS will reveal a large-scale dedicated exhibition space at the entrance which has been transformed by a special artwork – Impenetrable Room, 2017. Created by the Chilean artist Iván Navarro it has been commissioned by the New York-based Paul Kasmin Gallery who are new exhibitors.

Over the coming days I look forward to sharing blogs on some of the leading dealers taking part.

www.masterpiecefair.com

A great celebration of Art!

MAYFAIR ART WEEKEND, Mayfair & St James’s, London (various locations), 30th June – 2nd July 2017

 

I am grateful to John Kirkwood for attending the press conference and writing about this:

 

Max Mara
Ludovica Gioscia – Infinite Present, 2017. C-print on archival fuji matt paper
Courtesy Ludovica Gioscia

Now in its fourth year this celebration of Art in Mayfair features over 60 galleries, auction houses, fashion houses and restaurants who will all in their own way have something to offer the visitor.

Mayor Gallery
Tadaaki Kuwayama – Untitled (Yellow)1969, acrylic on canvas, 90x90cm.
Courtesy of Mayor Gallery

 

Moretti Gallery
Guido Reni, Bologna – Two Bacchantes 1639-1640.
Courtesy of Moretti Gallery

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Royal Academy of Arts will be the hub of this celebration and its courtyard will offer a place in which to relax and recover your strength to carry on through the many events planned.

Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac
Gilbert & George
Courtesy Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, Photo Nikolai Saoulski

There will be temporary, site-specific artworks from up and coming artists and workshops led by groups such as the Bedroom Artists’ Collective as well as informal conversations with artists, gallerists and local Mayfair figures.

Burlington Arcade
Mathilde Nivet – Birds

The Burlington Arcade has commissioned an installation by Mathilde Nivet of 300 paper birds in-flight motion in two positions – wings fully stretched or slightly bent.  Not unsurprisingly the installation is called Birds!

GAFRA
Nelson Makamo – Cool Moments 2017
Courtesy of the Gallery of African Art (GAFRA)

 

Hignell Gallery
Ben Russell – Cactus House, Alabaster 2017
Photograph courtesy of Tanya Dolver

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On Sunday there will be a workshop for kids to create their own Gallery.

Bowman Sculpture
Le Baiser (The Kiss), 2nd Reduction – Auguste Rodin.
Courtesy of Bowman Sculpture

 

David Zwirner
Lisa Yuskavage – Stoned 2016
Courtesy David Zwirner New York-London

 

Victoria Miro
Milton Avery – Young Couple (Husband and Wife), 1963. Oil on canvas. 50 x 60 in
© Milton AveryTrust

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

White Cube
Wayne Thiebaud – Green Dress 1966 – 2017
© Wayne Thiebaud DACS, London, VAGA, New York 2017

 

Simon Dickinson Gallery
Domenico Conti – Portrait of Antonio Canova in his studio completing the La Touche ‘Amorino, 1792.
Courtesy of Simon Dickenson Gallery

 

Partners & Mucciaccia_
Cristiano Pintaldi – Untitled,2016, acrylic on canvas, 101x105cm.
Courtesy of Partners & Mucciaccia

 

Pace
Nathalie du Pasquier
© 2017 Nathalie du Pasquier. Photo by Bruno Lopes

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Halcyon Gallery
Dale Chihuly – Maize Persian Set with Obsidian Lip Wraps
Courtesy of Halcyon Gallery

 

Marlborough Fine Art
Victor Pasmore – The Cloud in the West,1987
Courtesy of Marlborough Fine Art

 

Stoppenbach & Delestre
Andre Derain – Collioure
Courtesy of Stoppenbach & Delestre

 

Mount Street Gardens
Benjamin McMahon (2014)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

http://www.mayfairartweekend.com

 

A striking exhibition!

Aaron Kasmin: UP IN SMOKE, Sims Reed Gallery, 43A Duke Street, St. James’s, London SW1, until 9th June 2017

Aaron Kasmin,
Bottoms Up, 2016.
Coloured pencil, 30x21cm.
Sims Reed Gallery

For his second exhibition with the gallery Aaron revisits the theme of American feature matchbooks with twenty-eight pencil drawings.  It is great fun especially as one can see part of his collection of original matchbooks too.

Aaron Kasmin,
Pumps, 2016.
Coloured pencil, 30x21cm.
Sims Reed Gallery

Aaron Kasmin,
Sea Shell Restaurant, 2016.
Coloured pencil, 30x21cm.
Sims Reed Gallery

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Aaron sums up his enthusiasm saying:  “These new works reflect a joint celebration of the joy of collecting and creating works inspired by the sheer inventiveness and genius of feature matchbooks. The matchbooks are small, ephemeral and almost forgotten; the ingenuity of the imagery in what must be the golden age of graphic design is here in minute form. To me they conjure up the glamour of early to mid-twentieth century American life. The glitz inherent in nightclubs and bars hark back to the post-prohibition era with movie stars and opulent parties evoked and captured in the novels of Scott Fitzgerald and Raymond Chandler, and re-created in the nostalgic films of Woody Allen.”

Aaron Kasmin,
Special Delivery, 2017.
Coloured pencil, 21x15cm.
Sims Reed Gallery

 

Vintage Matchbooks
Sims Reed Gallery

 

http://gallery.simsreed.com

Hollywood Style!

Betsy Bloomingdale: A Life in Style, Christie’s New York, live auction on April 5th 2017 and online sale March 30th-April 6th2017

The Atrium, Mrs. Bloomingdale’s Hollywood Regency villa, Los Angeles.
Photography by Spencer Lowell. Courtesy of Christie’s.

In her later years Mrs Bloomingdale summed up her thoughts on style saying: ‘To me, style in anything you do, whether dressing, entertaining, collecting, whatever, is a sureness of choice. It can be learned, it can be developed, but to be successful, it mustn’t be perceived.’

Both the online auction and the live auction reflect her philosophy whether it be in jewels, or clothes – Oscar de la Renta, Valentino and Christian Dior – or her home. A leading figure of Los Angeles society she was known for her philanthropy and her entertaining. She welcomed many legendary Hollywood figures to her home as well as the Reagans and the Annenbergs.  She kept a record of every dinner party she gave from 1959 until her death last year.

The Dining Room, Mrs. Bloomingdale’s Hollywood Regency villa, Los Angeles.
Photography by Spencer Lowell. Courtesy of Christie’s.

Her home was a fine example of Hollywood Regency and was one of the legendary designer William (Billy) Haines last remaining masterpieces.  Haines started his career as a silent movie star but his refusal to end his relationship with his long-term partner Jimmie Shields led to his MGM contract being ended in 1933.

The Bedroom, Mrs. Bloomingdale’s Hollywood Regency villa, Los Angeles.
Photography by Spencer Lowell. Courtesy of Christie’s.

However this inspired Haines (1900-1973) to set himself up as a designer of both interiors and furniture.  His clients included Joan Crawford, Jack Warner, George Cukor, the Goetzes and the Annenbergs at both their home Sunnylands, near Palm Springs and also at Winfield House, London when Mr Annenberg was the US Ambassador to the UK. As these images show Haines had a deft touch creating an 18th century feel in rooms that were very easy to use and so perfectly crafted that the owners rarely changed anything.

This sale is truly a celebration of 20th century American style and taste!

The Living Room, Mrs. Bloomingdale’s Hollywood Regency villa, Los Angeles.
Photography by Spencer Lowell. Courtesy of Christie’s.

 

www.christies.com

Modern Masters

From Picabia to Picasso: A Selection of Works by Modern Masters, Olivier Malingue Ltd, 143 New Bond Street, London, W1, until 1st March 2017

From Picabia to Picasso, Installation view at Olivier Malingue Gallery, January 2017. Photo: Plastiques Photography

From Picabia to Picasso,
Installation view at Olivier Malingue Gallery, January 2017.
Photo: Plastiques Photography

The Olivier Malingue Gallery opened in October 2016 with an exhibition of works by the Korean artist Cho Yong-Ik and at present it plays host to a fascinating exhibition featuring works by Alexander Calder, Jean Dubuffet, Sam Francis, Wassily Kandinsky, Henri Laurens, Fernand Léger, Francis Picabia and Pablo Picasso.

From Picabia to Picasso, Installation view at Olivier Malingue Gallery, January 2017. Photo: Plastiques Photography

From Picabia to Picasso,
Installation view at Olivier Malingue Gallery, January 2017.
Photo: Plastiques Photography

This is a beautifully curated show with the works displayed in a way that allows them to each be studied and experienced individually but when, as the images indicate, the show is viewed as a whole it becomes a harmonious ensemble which both stimulates and satisfies the viewer’s senses.

http://oliviermalingue.com/