In 2009 Taryn Simon documented over 1,000 examples of seized contraband during a 5-day stint at JFK International Airport. The resulting body of work, currently on display at Gagosian, Beverly Hills, presents an array of items – unidentified meats, animal parts, cow dung toothpaste – uniformly documented in objective, forensic-style photographs. Stripped of context by a neutral grey background, these items of trade are effectively re-presented as global artifacts.
The opening of Takashi Murakami’s retrospective at the Chateau of Versailles has been met with protests by concerned French traditionalists resistant to the exhibition of contemporary art in Versailles. The Versailles Defence Coordination and Versailles Mon Amour have created a petition containing over 11,000 signatures berating the Chateau for allowing such a ‘clash of cultures’.
Of course the disconnect between location and exhibition is intentional. It encourages typical Versailles visitors to view art they might not otherwise see and introduces contemporary art enthusiasts to a location they might not otherwise visit. Leg of Lamb reckons it’s a win win situation.
Murakami Versailles, Chateau of Versailles, Place d’Armes, until 12 December 2010.
The Wheeler Centre has released video footage from Critical Failure, a series of events that examined the state of arts criticism in Australia. You can watch the debates on the Wheeler Centre’s website here.
Kaliman Gallery was a fixture in the Sydney art scene for almost a decade and its closure last year was saddening. But all is not lost for former director Vasili Kaliman following the announcement that he will be opening a new dealer gallery in Sydney with fellow dealer Michael Reid in early 2011. Kaliman + Reid will focus on secondary market works made from the 1980’s onwards and will also encorporate curated exhibitions into their programme.
Until then, you can keep any eye on what Kaliman’s up to on his website, blog and twitter page.
Discovering a Paul McCarthy video amidst ACCA’s current Gestures and Procedures exhibition was a welcome relief after suffering through Bianca Hester’s ‘experiential’ trash next door. Leg of Lamb loves a bit of smut and
McCarthy never fails to disappoint.
Tucked in between projections of Mike Parr’s 1970’s performance pieces and Daniel von Sturmer’s elegant modernist videos, McCarthy’s offering is decidedly base. ‘Rocky‘ features the naked artist repeatedly punching himself in the face and smearing ketchup where the sun don’t shine.
McCarthy’s performances often rub people up the wrong way (ahem) but there’s something perversely pleasing about watching a grown man behave in such a puerile manner. McCarthy abandons ‘normal’ codes of behaviour and reverts to a primal form of existence in which pleasure (and pain) is achieved simply, directly and without inhibition.
Gestures & Procedures, ACCA, 111 Sturt Street, Southbank, Melbourne, until September 26.
The Guggenheim received over 23,000 submissions for their forthcoming YouTube Play Biennial. 100 of these entries have now been short-listed and you can view them on the Play Biennial channel on YouTube here. From what Leg of Lamb has seen, the pickings are slim. Unless of course you’re partial to musings on humanity that closely resemble ads for health insurance (above). A final 20 works selected by the jury will be exhibited at the Guggenheim, New York from October 22.
American photographer Lee Friedlander loves a good road trip and has for many years photographed scenes in the rear view mirrors of various hire cars. The mirrors are clever framing devices that Freidlander uses to create oblique perspectives on the American landscape. 192 of these square format images taken during the past decade are currently on display at the Whitney Museum of Art.