Tag Archives: contemporary art

rolling the ball…


Ok, so i like this work, Ayed Arafah is interested in the concept of playing and how we tend to lose this capacity as we become older…he rolls a sphere made from plastic waste bins around Biella, encouraging people to join in and play with it…

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So Biella is a tough crowd, it’s not always so easy to engage and involve on the the street but this work, works. People constantly ask what it is, why, they join in and push, they even get out of their cars to push…and mostly they smile. It’s a simple thing but not so easy to do and for a little while creates a common language that has nothing to do with speaking English, Italian or Arabic…

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…a family plays with the ball for ages…and here is where this kind of intervention is nice, you actually start to talk to people, rather than just existing in the same space with them…

P1070698“guarding” the sphere while the artist buys chips…photo by ayed arafah

P1210601sphere and pigeons

…meanwhile Ilaria swaps cotton candy for aluminium…but that’s another post i think:

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on spoilers and giving away secrets…

jumping back Edinburgh for a week..with the festival in full swing and all…

SPOILER ALERT: if you are in Edinburgh for the 2013 International Arts Festival and you are thinking of going to see the work by Gregor Schneider at Summerhall…DO NOT read this post as it will spoil the work for you…the work relies on you not knowing what you are going into…YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED!!!!

So…all we are told is that this work was specially created by Gregor Schneider for the basement galleries in Summerhall, that you must go into the space alone (you queue up) and that you can spend a maximum of 5 minutes there and that there is absolutely no photography or recording allowed…

It’s my turn, i go through the door and there is a long white corridor with a door at the end and a door to my left (i have been instructed to try all the doors), i go into this nearest door and am in a smaller white, windowless room with some vents…it’s very, very bright, even feels a bit misty but i can’t tell if it’s a trick of my eyes because of all that bright whiteness, it smells a little of dry ice. I stand there for a minute blinking in the whiteness and then go back into the corridor…only 1 other door option…at the end of the corridor.

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Am aware of loud voices coming from nearby, but this place is a warren and there are lots of other plays and performances going on, i wonder if this is what i am hearing…i can’t tell the language, maybe it’s English but i don’t think so…i open the door and the voices cease immediately…OK…so now i am in a very dark room, black with very low level lighting…but i am not alone. At first i think they are mannequins or statues as their bodies are classical and smooth like marble. But they are men…maybe 20 or more of them, naked, black, sitting and standing around the perimeter of the room…muscular like classical statues, glowing slightly yellow in the dim light, and looking at me the audience…i think. There is silence…

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Wow…what to do…i can’t believe some people spend 5 minutes here…i spent less than a minute and that felt like a LONG time…Am not sure what to do so i find a gap among the bodies and stand like them for a few seconds, in a kind of clothed solidarity…then i see the green exit sign above another door and leave…once the door is closed, i start to laugh (quite a lot), that is my immediate reaction…at my own discomfort, at the tension of the situation… and the invigilator radios that i have left and that the next person can enter. I ask him how people react when they come out…he says a few laugh, a few are bit disturbed, some are unperturbed, all manner of reactions…

I immediately think I’d like t go through again, try to remain a little longer in the space, see what happens but then realise i don’t want to go through in this new fully informed state, it changes everything.

more UNIDEE in progress…

A lot was going on during our open studio and on top of all my other jobs, coordinating the final open studio of UNIDEE in progress meant i could not be everywhere at the same time…and the photos i snatched every now and then could only tell so much of the story (see previous post), so am publishing some more formal shots taken by Enrico Amici who was the photographer for all the events happening at Cittadellarte during Oct 5:

ALL PHOTOS ON THIS POST BY ENRICO AMICI

UNIDEE in progress

I think preparing for group art shows must be a little like childbirth…in that you conveniently forget all the pain involved… which allows you to embark on the next one…otherwise you would never go back for more…arghhhhh!!

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photos by Margavp with extra material from Shah Zaman

We finally had our end of residence show (for more see posts from june-october), the results/works in progress from 4 months of an Italian contemporary art residence. I was coordinating the event which was not easy due to the usual restrictions that come in a cultural institution operating within the financial constraints of a global economic crisis…and also the Fondazione was opening 3 or 4 shows on the same date so resources were spread thin…very thin!!! However we survived…all of us…just… with a great show from a group of very lovely people…some good art…oh yes… and a lot of people turned up!!!…

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artists in natural habitiat…

Went to visit the collection at Castello di Rivoli, near Turin, with UNIDEE. They do have a very decent contemporary art collection there, Sol le Witt, Maurizio Cattelan, Rebecca Horn etc…but for me it was more fun to go for the “artists in the art gallery” angle in my photographs…A big thanks to the Castello di Rivoli who allowed us to take photos inside of the collection.

triptychs…

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