This week in Art Weekly we are traveling to Johannesburg, South Africa, London, Rome, and of course home sweet home NYC for this week’s top national and international art opening picks! Enjoy!
Various Artists (Kaari Upson) — “Mixed Message Media” — New York, NY
Those who know this column also know that I only include group shows if they are really special! This one qualifies as unique as it gathers artists from around the world who use very non-traditional materials to create their work. Curated by Neville Wakefield, this show will include a broad range of mediums including but not limited to, video, site-specific installation, painting and sculpture. I am particularly looking forward to what Kaari Upson (who created the gorgeous photo above) will be exhibiting. I saw her work displayed at the Rubell Family Collection in Miami just a couple of years ago and was completely shocked and impressed.
Ed Ruscha, Lucien Smith, Betty Tompkins, Piotr Uklaski — “Sunsets and Pussy” — New York, NY
This exhibition has already raised many eyebrows throughout the art world chatter channels but knowing “top of the A-list” venue Marianne Boesky Gallery, it will be simply be clever, cheeky and very summery exhibition to be remembered. As the press handle cleverly states, “This exhibition brings together two classic themes of summer wonder.” The fact that the four artists who have created this work are of the highest quality also confirms that this show will be quite an adventure. I will be at this opening reception tonight, so I hope to see you there!
Robert Irwin will be doing his very first solo show at Pace Gallery in London this week and it looks like it will be a pretty special event. The exhibition will feature two new site-specific installations of a very large scale and will include suspensions that will be suspended from the ceiling. Because Irwin found painting and sculpture to be too constricting he was the very first artist to make installations solely with the intention of manipulating the light in front of and surround the viewer. I can’t wait to see what he has in store!
Jannis Kounellis — “Invito Black En” — Rome, Italy
Greek painter, performance artist and sculptor Jannis Kounellis is most active in Italy which is where he will be exhibiting his show this week. Associated with the Arte Povera movement his work is defined by a juxtaposition of objects, materials and actions that were culturally and physically opposed to each other. This included the usage of cotton and coal, objets trouvés such as bed-frames, doors etc. and in his most exciting installations, fire, wood, embers and smoke.
Walter Oltmann — “Penumbra” — Johannesburg, South Africa
Walter Oltman’s work is nothing short of extraordinary. Using extremely thin aluminum wire, usually only 1mm thick in diameter he creates fantastical sculptures and drawing that are incredibly intricate and delicate. His work ranges from small paintings to massive wire sculptures and costumes which, as exhibited in the above photo, are perhaps where Nick Cave has drawn inspiration and vice versa. For our South African readers: you are very lucky to get to see this rare exhibition, enjoy!