Palermo - News

“Inside Out” by JR is Travelling to Palermo

4 days ago

In the frame of Sky Arte Festival, JR is taking over Palermo with his travelling installation titled “Inside Out”, a project that is reaching several destinations all over the world since 2011.
The work is made up of over 4 thousand photographic portraits, showcased on an area of 5 thousand square meters in the setting of Piazza del Parlamento and Palazzo dei Normanni in Palermo.

The portraits of 250 citizens of Palermo, reworked by JR, will be exhibited together with those of the previous Italian editions, in a single square and in a continuous exchange where the memory intertwines with the future to launch the message “Restiamo Uniti”, aiming that a culture of inclusion is possible, laying the foundations for a society based on reception and integration.

JR – Inside Out Palermo: Restiamo Umani
Piazza del Parlamento

Carla Ingrasciotta

  • JR, Somerset House London, 2013 JR, Somerset House London, 2013
Dubai/Sharjah/Abu Dhabi - Posts

Alserkal Avenue Announced its Collaboration with the Samdani Art Foundation

6 days ago

Alserkal Avenue has just announced its collaboration with the Samdani Art Foundation on the upcoming exhibition “Fabric(ated) Fractures“, due to open at Concrete, Dubai in March 2019. The group exhibition features works by Bangladeshi, South Asian and Southeast Asian artists.

The exhibition aims to be a platform to amplify the voices of artists from Bangladesh and South and Southeast Asia, introducing new works from artists with a connection to Bangladesh and highlighting the importance of patronage in creating a springboard for dialogue.

This collaboration serves as a bridge to Dhaka Art Summit 2020, which shifts its focus to explore Bengal’s position at the crossroads of historical exchange between Africa and Asia.

Fabric(ated) Fractures
March 9–23, 2019

Concrete, 73 6 St, Alserkal Avenue
Dubai, United Arab Emirates

My Art Guides Editorial Team

  • Left to right: Rajeeb Samdani, Vilma Jurkute, Nadia Samdani, Diana Campbell Betancourt, Abdelmonem Bin Eisa Alserkal. Photo: Dan Weill Left to right: Rajeeb Samdani, Vilma Jurkute, Nadia Samdani, Diana Campbell Betancourt, Abdelmonem Bin Eisa Alserkal. Photo: Dan Weill
Berlin - Interviews

Johann König on Berlin: “This city is still a place of liberty, freedom and hedonism”

1 week ago

During our stay in London, for the occasion of Frieze Art Week, we met Johann König to talk about König gallery’s identity and the brand strategy he initiated in Berlin and brought to the London branch. He has also shared with us his perspective on the Berlin art scene.

Mara Sartore:  Ok, let’s start with the space we are in now, König London, which opened this time last year, why this decision to open a space in London?

Johann König: I thought it was a good idea to open a space in London, we wanted to offer books and our König souvenirs label, we wanted to include this as part of the gallery.

Mara Sartore: I’m really interested in your concept of brand strategy. I am especially drawn to the European Union hoodie!

Johann König: In Berlin we have thousands of visitors for each exhibition and we represent a young generation of artists. The gallery is considered more of a museum or foundation: although there is no entrance fee, it’s a really big space with large shows and we are open on Sundays, have workshops and tour for kids. We could sense that our audience wanted to participate and take a part of it. We developed the building with the landlords and tenants and were inspired by them and their initiatives so we started to develop a magazine, a brand…we started to create products with the artists themselves.

The first product was a blue hoodie with the European Union flag with a missing star which you find on the back and this very quickly became a must-have fashion item, even in London.… We also produced a kippah hoodie as a supportive message to Jewish people who are often attacked on the streets, we try to deliver ‘opinion wear’ with a certain degree of political connotations.

Mara Sartore: When you arrived in Berlin the city was new for you. What is the state of the Berlin art scene today, how has it changed over the years since the opening of the gallery? How do you see the Berlin art scene within the European context?

Johann König: Berlin has a strong identity, with the London space for example, we wanted to bring a little bit of Berlin to London, with a sort of 90s vibe. We purposely decided to not have a townhouse here, opting for a more Berlin type of space. Our original plan was to allow visitors to walk through the courtyard which looks like a Berlin courtyard, even the neighbourhood is “Berlinisch”.

Berlin has changed a lot. The city is still a place of liberty, freedom and hedonism, there’s an extensive club scene there but the city today has rent problems, it’s very hard to find a space. The reasons are related to tourism, airbnb and also because Berlin is becoming more and more popular, people come here from all over the world and there is boom of tech starts-ups and a lot of people prefer to work in Berlin with a half the payment instead of working in another place in another German city with double the salary simply because they like living in Berlin. And this makes the prices of real estate rise. We own our building and we rent also our space for low rent to support the initiatives we like.
The city is now difficult for artists, especially finding studio spaces, although still easier than London and Paris. It’s not as it used to be anymore, Berlin is in a phase of transition, it is somehow getting older and perhaps more bourgeois, there is more money in the city but it is not a financial capital like London, we have to make sure it will remain interesting, the pressure is increasing… a commercial pressure to get the rent in.

Mara Sartore: What about the market? Is the collectors scene in Berlin is local or is there an international base? How was Art Berlin this year?

Johann König: The fair was really beautiful to look at, but it was very slow. There was no international attendance. This is good enough for us as the German market is really strong. There are big collectors and the situation can be compared to the Italian market scene, it’s on the rise. For example, these collectors start having five Fontanas and they have the conditions of becoming serious collectors of young and mid-generation artists. We have some clients who are second generations art collectors, for example…

Mara Sartore: Why do you think the fair is unable to attract international collectors?

Johann König: The beautiful venue should be able to attract visitors in itself, but it’s running at a bad moment, just one week prior to Frieze. Next year, it will be held during early September.
The problem is that the Berlin gallery community has somehow changed the brand seven times…everybody has lost track. We used to have a functioning art form identity, there was ABC, then it was hosted in a hangar, then it became a curated fair, then it fused with Art Cologne…nobody knows what is going on anymore.

Mara Sartore: Is Art Cologne the main fair in Germany?

Johann König: Yes, it is a very financially strong fair.

Mara Sartore: And what fo you think about MCH acquiring Art Dusseldorf?

Johann König: I think it has to do with the area, Cologne is a Catholic area and they have a big sense for art. Berlin is a protestant city and it’s a disrupted city, it’s both a working class city which of course is rather poor as well as a bourgeois society. The buying people mostly come from areas with big companies, like other places in Germany. With regard to Berlin, I would say that the Gallery Weekend in Berlin which runs in mid April has a much more international attendance and format. 

For us it is a bit different, we have a high number of visits throughout the year due to the exceptional building. Anyone interested in art who comes to Berlin comes to the gallery. The experience of being there is so unique and incomparable to any other kind of gallery. Because of the architecture, the projects we host, as well the sculpture garden in the city centre. I bought the building in 2014 and it was sustained thanks to the sale of artworks. We have no money in the family, my father is a curator…

Mara Sartore: What about the very beginning?

Johann König: The previous gallery was in Rosa-Luxembourg Platz in the east of Berlin where there was originally only a Vietnamese vegetable market, a Hungarian travel agency, a brothel and nothing else and now this is the city centre of Berlin and a prime location, all the big brands have opened there, it’s now the commercial area. It was only 15 years ago but at that time I was paying 10% of what the rent is today.

Mara Sartore: Did you move from there because of the increase in rent?

Johann König: I moved because of annoying tourists. I had an intermediate stop in Potsdamer Platz in a former fabrication hall, a location which I was also lucky enough to buy…that’s what happened also with Paula Cooper in Chelsea, New York for example, when you can buy the venue you step out of the spiral of the increasing rents, but then you become your own ‘gentrificator’, we gentrified the area somehow, we kicked ourself out because we couldn’t afford it anymore

Mara Sartore: How did you find the church?

Johann König: I started looking at alternative real estate because I couldn’t afford normal real estate anymore. I was looking for places which were off the market like train stations, police stations and bunkers and then I found this church. It was in a very bad condition – look at these vintage photos from the 60s – it was 25 meters high and very large and basically nobody knew what to do with it.

Mara Sartore: But it was still owned by the church, right?

Johann König: Yes it was owned by the Catholic Community

Mara Sartore: You bought it from them?

Johann König: Yes, and I contacted the architect Arno Brandlhuber to make the space usable. Today we have have a new floor and at the back of the building we have staircase that leads to the garden.

Mara Sartore: What about the selection of your artists. Your current shows are by Alicia Kwade and Annette Kelm. I would like you to talk about the female presence in the contemporary art scene? How do you select the artists? Do you have personal relationship with them?

Johann König: Yes, most of the time I know them personally. Many of our represented artists are women but this a coincidence or maybe not, but yes, we have a strong presence of female artists.

My career was a bit unusual as you might know. I lost my eyesight when I was young and this led me to think that there’s a certain connection to the work that needs to be physically encountered and this is a connecting point, to be really understood. And this is what happened with Katharina Grosse for example, or with the swimming pool by Elmgreen & Dragset currently on view at the Whitechapel Gallery or Alicja Kwade’s work at Hayward Gallery.
I believe that perceiving art is not just a matter of visuality but it should involve all senses, it’s an  immersive experience, the show by Michael Sailstrofer – “Tear Show” opening tomorrow is another example of this.

Mara Sartore: What about future projects? What will happen in London after Frieze and this current show?

Johann König: We have 5/6 weeks long exhibitions, a very fast pace rotation, it’s quite an active programme…maybe we need to slow down a bit!

Mara Sartore

  • Johann König © Lukas Gansterer Johann König © Lukas Gansterer
  • Micheal Sailstorfer, Tear Show, Exhibition view © Damian Griffiths, Courtesy of KÖNIG GALERIE Micheal Sailstorfer, Tear Show, Exhibition view © Damian Griffiths, Courtesy of KÖNIG GALERIE
  • KÖNIG LONDON, Souvenir and Bookshop © Damian Griffiths KÖNIG LONDON, Souvenir and Bookshop © Damian Griffiths
  • St. Agnes, Staircase, Courtesy of KÖNIG GALERIE St. Agnes, Staircase, Courtesy of KÖNIG GALERIE
  • St. Agnes, Outside, Courtesy of KÖNIG GALERIE St. Agnes, Outside, Courtesy of KÖNIG GALERIE
  • St. Agnes, Nave, Courtesy of KÖNIG GALERIE St. Agnes, Nave, Courtesy of KÖNIG GALERIE
Venice - Posts

Enrico David, Chiara Fumai, Liliana Moro to Represent the Italian Pavilion at the 2019 Venice Biennale

2 weeks ago

Today, October 3rd, the Minister for Cultural Heritage, Alberto Bonisoli, announced the three artists selected by the curator Milovan Farronato, who will represent Italy at the upcoming Venice Biennale (11 May to 24 November 2019):  Enrico David (Ancona, 1966); Chiara Fumai (Rome, 1978-Bari, 2017); Liliana Moro (Milan, 1961).

“Between two generations, the works and biographies of Enrico David, Chiara Fumai and Liliana Moro, although very different”, explained the curator of the Italian Pavilion Milovan Farronato, “mark significant contemporary artistic paths that stand out for their research between past and present. Their works stand out for the inextinguishable desire to explore territories where daily life, survival, tradition and narration have a strong presence. I worked closely with these three artists over the years, on the occasion of personal and collective exhibitions in Italy and abroad, and I am happy to be able to support their practices in this large-scale exhibition, which will include new works but also works of the past”.

Carla Ingrasciotta

  • Chiara Fumai Chiara Fumai
  • Enrico David Enrico David
  • Liliana Moro Liliana Moro
Dubai/Sharjah/Abu Dhabi - News

Dubai Design Week 2018: Highlights from the Upcoming Edition

2 weeks ago

With its six-day programme and more than 200 events, Dubai Design Week is the largest creative festival in the Middle East, reflecting Dubai’s position as the regional capital of design.
The event sets itself as a meeting point for the global design community, a platform for regional design and acts as a catalyst for the growth of the creative community in Dubai.

The fourth edition of Dubai Design Week, running November 12-17 2018, features the region’s leading design fair, Downtown Design, the Global Grad Show, which brings together projects from 100 of the most innovative universities across the world; and Abwab, the curated and interactive project containing original design from the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia.

Check out here the full list of events.

Dubai Design District
12 – 17 November, 2018

Opening Hours
Monday – Thursday: 9am –6pm
Friday and Saturday: 9am –6pm

Carla Ingrasciotta

  • Dubai Design District Dubai Design District
Seoul - News

Korea Gallery Weekend: October 4 – 7, 2018

2 weeks ago

Organised by Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism and Korea Arts Management Service (KAMS) and produced by the Galleries Association of Korea, the Korea Gallery Weekend 2018 runs from October 4 to 7 during KIAF 2018 Art Seoul presenting a series of events such as K-ART Fam-tour, Networking Reception, K-ART Conversation, and exhibitions for Korean and international visitors.

The K-ART Fam-tour is an opportunity for international guests to take a tour on major Korean galleries
(around 15) and museums to have the opportunity meeting with artists and hear words from the officials.

K-ART Conversation is an international panel talk hosted by Korea Arts Management Service (KAMS) and Galleries Association of Korea, in partnership with Talking Galleries of Spain.

The Art Bus (free, 2pm – 6pm, October 5, 6,  7) provides chance to take a look at galleries around Insa-dong and Samchung-dong. General visitors will take a ride on Art Bus departing from Coex going to Insa-dong, and will be able to freely tour exhibitions and Insa-dong centering on the gallery information provided.

My Art Guides Editorial Team

  • Gallery Weekend Korea 2018, Courtesy Gallery Weekend Korea. Gallery Weekend Korea 2018, Courtesy Gallery Weekend Korea.

Per Barclay and Turin: a Declaration of Love to an Underestimated City

2 weeks ago

On the occasion of Artissima and our digital issue on Turin’s Art Week, we had a conversation with Norwegian-born and Turin-based artist Per Barclay to learn more about his projects and ask for some tips to make the most of the Piemontese town.

Mara Sartore: In many of your past and recent “oil room” installations you have engaged in some sort of dialogue with architecture and then photography. What is your relationship with these two media?

Per Barclay: The photography is a prolongation of the actual installation and becomes a separate entity in itself. It’s a duality I find intriguing. The installation itself usually disappears after a short time but with the photographs I can continue to explore what I found interesting with the space (architecture) in the first place.

MS: Could you lead us through the creating process behind your work and how your method has been changing through the years?

PB: At the beginning I had what we could say a sculptor’s approach. The photos were taken frontally and printed as big as possible. I wanted the spectators to have the feeling they could physically enter the image. With time I started to dig deeper into the images by drawing out parts of the architectural space, often rendering these cuts nearly abstract: perhaps a more painterly approach.

MS: You have been living in Turin for almost 20 years now, what made you chose this city?

PB: In 1989 I started working with Giorgio Persano gallery in Turin. At the time I was living in Naples. Persano suggested I worked in Turin, a choice I have never regretted. I was given amazing work conditions and through the gallery had the privilege of knowing artists like Franz West, Susana Solano, Mario Merz and Gilberto Zorio among others. A great school for a young artist. Turin is one of the most important cities in Italy for contemporary art. In addition to excellent museums, foundations and galleries, you find everything you need for your work as an artist, including extraordinary artisans.

MS: We love to give insider’s tips to our readers, could you recommend 5 not-to-be-missed spots in Turin for an art lover visiting the city on a regular day?

PB: In my opinion Turin is an underestimated city. The historical centre is beautiful. I always take my visitors to the church of Il Santuario della Consolata, in Piazza della Consolata. Don’t miss the famous ex voto in the back of the church to the right. Turin is known for its café culture. The town’s oldest café – Al Bicerin is just in front of La Consolata and a must. Not far, in the interesting quadrilatero district you’ll find Ristorante Tre Galli (Via Sant’Agostino, 25) my kind of kitchen and a good choice of wine. My favourite café is Caffé Platti (Corso Vittorio Emanuele, 72)…..for coffee and good cakes. In the beautiful Piazza Vittorio Veneto you’ll find one of the most typical Piemontese restaurants: Ristorante Porto di Savona (Piazza Vittorio Veneto, 2) with traditional food and great atmosphere. If you would like to take home some Italian specialities like parmigiano, ham etc go to Baudracco (Corso Vittorio Emanuele, 62): they have a super choice and they will vacuum pack for you what you get.

MS: Your most recent work is on show at Palazzo Mazzarino in Palermo for Manifesta12, this was your third big project in town after Palazzo Costantino and Bianco Palermo. Could you tell us about this experience?

PB: The Cavallerizza of Palazzo Mazzarino is an amazing space. I visited it for the first time two years ago during its restoration and totally fell in love. My dynamic gallerist in Palermo, Francesco Pantaleone agreed it would be perfect for an oil room project. I am most grateful to the Marchesi Berlingieri for the permission and great support during the whole process. I have always been fascinated by Palermo. A city of raw energy and wonderful enthusiastic public. I am honoured to have been able to work in some of the most important historical monuments of the city.

MS: Could you anticipate something about your future projects in Italy and abroad?

PB: I am happy to say my schedule is quite busy these days. I have two gallery shows coming up in Italy next year: one in Bologna in January and one in Milan in April. I am also working on a public sculpture in Norway to be completed before May and then preparing two major museum exhibitions for next year and 2020 which will keep me well occupied!

Mara Sartore

  • Per Barclay © Ilja Hendel Per Barclay © Ilja Hendel
  • Per Barclay, Cavallerizza Palazzo Mazzarino, Palermo Per Barclay, Cavallerizza Palazzo Mazzarino, Palermo
  • Per Barclay, Santa Caterina #6, Courtesy of Francesco Pantaleone Per Barclay, Santa Caterina #6, Courtesy of Francesco Pantaleone
  • Per Barclay, Rosso Ribera. Installation view, 2011 Per Barclay, Rosso Ribera. Installation view, 2011
Lagos - News

LagosPhoto Festival October 27 – November 15, 2018: “Time Has Gone”

2 weeks ago

With the title “Time Has Gone” the 9th edition of LagosPhoto Festival will run from October 27 to November 15 across many venues in Lagos, Nigeria.

“Time Has Gone” explores contemporary dialogues surrounding different facets of time. The relationship between time and photography is obvious, so artists from around the globe are invited to investigate the practices of archiving, preservation, imagining the possibility of an Afro-based future, putting an end to a ‘‘time that is up’’ or the never-ending desire to reinterpret a past, laden with both nostalgia and/or hidden phantoms.

Claudia Malfitano

  • Courtesy of LagosPhoto Courtesy of LagosPhoto
Miami - News

Art Basel Announces a Premier List of Galleries for its Miami Beach Edition

2 weeks ago

Art Basel returns in Miami Beach for its 17th edition with a new line up of events and news. On September 28, it announced a premier list of galleries which counts 268 leading galleries from 34 countries of which 29 galleries join Art Basel in Miami Beach for the first time. The list features a strong presence of Latin American galleries and artists, reflecting the importance of Art Basel in Miami Beach for the region.

This year, the renovation of the Miami Beach Convention Center (MBCC) will be concluded, with expected completion of the parks as a next phase of the project to be realized in the coming years. Together with the redesigned floorplan and enhanced layout, the upgraded facilities will provide a premier platform for the exhibiting galleries

Art Basel in Miami Beach
6 –9 December 2018

Media Reception:
Wed, Dec 5, 2018

Private View (by invitation only):
Wed, Dec 5, 2018, 11am to 8pm
Thu, Dec 6, 2018, 11am to 3pm

Public days:
Thu, Dec 6, 2018, 3pm to 8pm
Fri, Dec 7, 2018, 12noon to 8pm
Sat, Dec 8, 2018, 12noon to 8pm
Sun, Dec 9, 2018, 12noon to 6pm

My Art Guides Editorial Team

  • Art Basel in Miami Beach 2017 © Art Basel Art Basel in Miami Beach 2017 © Art Basel
New York - News

New York Arab World Year Long Programme in the Five Boroughs

2 weeks ago

The Arab Art & Education Initiative presents a city-wide, year-long programme of events across the five boroughs of New York City. The programme involves a a coalition of artists, foundations, and major institutions to promote a greater understanding between the Arab world and the United States.
Complete Programme:

October 13 – January 13, 2019
Syria Then and Now: Stories from Refugees a Century Apart
Brooklyn Museum

October 14 – 24, 2018
Arab Street Artists’ Majlis
ArtX, Meatpacking District

October 14 – September 24, 2018
Arabic Music, Books & Posters
2 Bridges Music Arts

October 14 & October 21, 2018
Poets of Little Syria – Guided Tours
Little Syria – Lower Manhattan

October 15, 2018
Modern Mondays: Monira al Qadiri
The Museum of Modern Art

October 16, 2018
Culture Forum: Art for Sustainable Futures
Asia Society

October 17, 2018
Young Arab Artists Exhibition
ArtX, Meatpacking District

Octber 18 – September 20, 2018
Arab Women Artists’ Residency
The Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts

October 22, 2018
Representations of Mecca
Columbia University

October 23, 2018
Scholarly Seminar: Collecting and Exhibiting the Middle East
The Metropolitan Museum of Art

October 23, 2018
Conversations with Contemporary Artists: Samia Halaby
Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum

Claudia Malfitano

  • Syria, Then and Now: Stories from Refugees a Century Apart Syria, Then and Now: Stories from Refugees a Century Apart
  • Arab Women Artists’ Residency - Farah Al Qasimi, Falcon Hospital, 2016 Arab Women Artists’ Residency - Farah Al Qasimi, Falcon Hospital, 2016