Autumn 2012 Glenn brown autumn’s best shows where next? graduate destinations MArK wAllInGer on diego velázquez + CASS Art CoMPetItIon | Power oF ColleCtIVeS CUrAtInG At the whIteChAPel | JIM ShAw Q&A
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Cover: Glenn Brown, The Concrete Children, oil on panel, 170x142cm. On display at Upton House, Warwickshire until 6 January 2013. Image © Glenn Brown
Ten to See Top exhibitions. Your eyes will thank you
Past Favourites With Mark Wallinger’s take on Velázquez
Organising Chaos Inside the mind of a Whitechapel curator
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ten to see
From an energetic display at Tate Modern to an alternate use for paper in Manchester, we pick the UK’s top 10 art shows opening in autumn
thomas schütte – faces and figures
25 September – 18 November Serpentine Gallery, London W2 In the first exhibition dedicated solely to his portraiture, Thomas Schütte presents some of his most famous works, as well as brand new pieces created especially for the Serpentine. Schütte’s work is highly charged and decidedly uncomfortable. The German makes repeated nods to minimalism and conceptualism, as well as anchoring his practice in traditional approaches and methods, from watercolour to classical sculptural techniques. Highlights of this show will include 2011’s Vater Staat, a towering sculpture that appears initially to be a dominant authoritarian but, on closer inspection, is revealed to be more vulnerable, demonstrating Schütte’s interest in the fragility of the human condition. serpentinegallery.org
threadneedle art prize 26 September – 13 October Mall Galleries, London SW1 With a £30,000 first prize, there’s plenty riding on this emerging artists competition. The search is for figurative painting and sculpture but the styles are diverse, with plenty of interesting avenues guaranteed to be explored by the 144 shortlisted contenders. threadneedleprize.com
29 September – 25 November Modern Art Oxford The mark of a good artist is surely his or her ability to convince a major gallery to hang a series made entirely with BIC ballpoint pens. There’s more to this French artist than stationery cupboard doodles though as a series of glass and bronze sculptures and a new film commission will attest. modernartoxford.org.uk
seduced by art
31 October – 20 January 2013 National Gallery, London WC2 Spearheading an unofficial season of photography across the capital with major shows at Barbican, Tate Modern and Somerset House, this is the National’s first major exhibition of photographic prints. It places key works (including Ori Gersht’s Blow-Up, Untitled 5, 2007, pictured) in the context of the Old Master paintings that inspired them. nationalgallery.org.uk
matti braun – gost log
© CourteSy of the ArtiSt And MuMMery + SChnelle, london
6 October – 6 January 2013 Arnolfini, Bristol Cologne-based artist Matti Braun has a fantastical way of spinning conceptual paintings and installations from unlikely source material, such as creating a shimmering lake of logs in response to an unrealised Bengali film. arnolfini.org.uk
bloomberg new contemporaries 2012
15 September – 25 November Copperas Hill Building, Liverpool The annual BNC exhibition is always a reliable way of taking the temperature of the current art school scene, with Norwegian painter Tyra Tingleff and Irish filmmaker Jamie Buckley among the candidates impressing this year. newcontemporaries.org.uk > From the creators of Artists & Illustrators_ArtStudent 5
a bigger splash – painting after performance
6 ArtStudent_From the creators of Artists & Illustrators
4 October – 27 January 2013 Manchester Art Gallery and Gallery of Costume, Manchester If the role of paper is often underestimated in art, walking through a forest made of it or seeing clothes created out of maps and money will undoubtedly enhance your appreciation of this humble studio staple. In a major new exhibition split across two galleries, 30 international contemporary artists (including Andreas Kocks, whose In The Beginning is pictured above right) will turn a quotidian material into works of art in their own right. Rob Ryan’s largest single paper cut work will be one of seven brand new commissions on display. The three-metre long piece will feature Ryan’s signature delicate and romantic style. On varying scales, every single type of paper is used, while chosen themes visited include fairy tales, sexuality, environmentalism and death metal. Best of all, if you fall in love with any of the works, you might just have the chance to take it home, as limited editions by featured artists will be on sale. manchestergalleries.org
Until 6 January 2013 Upton House, nr. Banbury, Oxfordshire Born in Northumberland, Glenn Brown graduated from Goldsmith’s in 1992 and has since pursued a fairly singular path through the modern art world. A 2000 Turner Prize nomination and a Tate survey nine years later constitutes his brush with the mainstream to date, but in truth it is a surprise he isn’t a household name. Borrowing as readily from science fiction as he does art history, his paintings embellish found compositions with fantastical distortions, while his manipulations of the paint (including 2012’s Nazareth, top) reveal the true strength of his technical abilities. nationaltrust.org.uk/upton-house
galápagos 2 November – 13 January 2013 The Fruitmarket Gallery, Edinburgh Since 2007, the Galapagos Conservation Trust has run a residency programme for artists to visit the Pacific archipelago. From illustrations to installations, this show features work by 12 participants, including Jeremy Deller and Alison Turnbull. fruitmarket.co.uk
TATe. PurchASed 1981 ©dAvid hockney; ©Glenn Brown; PhoTo: chriSToPh knoch, Munich courTeSy The ArTiST
14 November – 1 April 2013 Tate Modern, London From painting on the human body and using gestural body language, to making marks or creating stage sets for theatre, this exhibition aims to demonstrate the relationship between painting and performance from 1950 to the present. Taking its cue from David Hockney’s famous 1967 painting of a sun-drenched Californian swimming pool (above), A Bigger Splash will include work in a variety of media including video and documents. Using feet in place of brushes, shooting canvases with air rifles and other techniques of ‘action’ artists such as Niki de Saint Phalle and the Japanese Gutai group will be laid bare in rare films and photographs. The role of make-up in art is also given plenty of attention: as drag, disguise or camouflage. Masterminded by curator Catherine Wood, the scope of the show is ambitious but essential as a means of showing how performance art has impacted on contemporary artists. tate.org.uk
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Over the next three pages, three giants of the contemporary art world reveal the old master works that they find most resonant and inspirational in their own practices
mark wallinger on diego velazquez
diego Velázquez, Triumph of Bacchus, 1628–’29, oil on canvas, 165×225cm
Velázquez is the greatest of all painters and this picture – prefiguring Las Meninas by nearly thirty years – is a wonderful example of the sophistication and modernity of his vision. As in Las Meninas, Velázquez presents us with a complexity of focal points. There are the figures paying sardonic homage to Bacchus, including what appears to be one other deity. The figure doffing his hat on the right I would guess was a latecomer to the painting, included to break up the horizontal row of heads. Bacchus himself, pudgily androgynous, appears illuminated by a different kind of light. He gazes out of frame into a space from which we are forever denied access. As a god, he is abstracted from the scene, which only goes to place the two liggers on his left in even sharper relief. The look they direct at the viewer slices clean through 350 years in the most disconcerting way. It is a look familiar to anyone who has enjoyed the glorious puerility of piling into a photo booth
after a good session. We are welcome to join them for a drink as long as we can stomach their blue jokes. However one might describe them, we are made complicit in the meaning of the work. This direct importuning of the viewer is one aspect of Velázquez’s modernity. The king looks at Diego and he (we) look back. He sees the Hapsburg chin as a spade and paints it as a spade. There is an extraordinary consistency to this gaze, which can find a king so ordinary. It can place the spiritual or mythological among the everyday or make an old woman frying eggs seem a matter of life or death. I think the key to this magic lies in Velázquez’s determination to reveal the materiality of the paint. What we might now perceive as a sort of truth to materials was in a religious age more akin to the transubstantiation of the bread and wine in the Eucharist. Beyond verisimilitude, objects are not so much described, as inscribed with meaning. (Or is that the drink talking?) > From the creators of Artists & Illustrators_ArtStudent 9
David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation
Wildlife Artist of the Year 2013
YOUNG & WILD
Top Prize £10,000
A new category for young artists aged 17-25 sponsored by Animal Friends Insurance Expert judges include David Shepherd, fellow artists, conservationists and art critics. Shortlisted work will be exhibited at the Mall Galleries, London 3-8 June, 2013
ll a r e v O tition e compprize * 0 0 0 , 0 £1
Entry from now until January, 2013 For full details and rules please see www.davidshepherd.org or call 01483 272323
*The overall winner of Wildlife Artist of the Year is chosen from one of the seven category winners. Two winners will be selected in the Young & Wild category each will receive £500 and a further £5,000 to donate to a DSWF project of their choice. The David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation is a UK registered charity (1106893) working to save critically endangered mammals in the wild. David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation, Saba House, 7 Kings Road, Shalford, Surrey GU4 8JU Tel: 01483 272323 Email: email@example.com
Image courtesy of Nikki Stevens
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Michelangelo, Rondanini Pietà, c. 1564, marble, 195cm high
miroslaw balka on michelangelo The Rondanini Pietà is probably the last work Michelangelo made before he died, which might explain why it looks unfinished. I had known about this sculpture for a very long time, but only from a black-and-white photograph in one of my old art books. When I first saw the photograph as a teenager, I thought that the sculpture looked very mysterious. It seemed like an imperfect work. But when I looked closer I could
see that in this imperfection there was a kind of perfection. So, in some way, the work plays with the viewer. Michelangelo spent a lot of time working on only a few details, such as the arm, the thighs and the knees of Christ. Some parts are very well finished while others remain rough. What I like about using marble is that it is a material that takes time to work with. However, this piece is like a sketch, or a drawing in space. Some elements in this sculpture are very well done while others just disappear. In this respect, the Rondanini Pietà is an honest work of art. I think this is one of the most important things in the creative arts. You can see some mistakes in the sculpture but that doesn’t matter to me. Artists can make mistakes. In fact, it is in the mistake that one can find the power and the truth of a situation. For example, the hand here appears disconnected from Christ’s body. The work is like an intriguing puzzle and you have to glue the elements together. The Rondanini Pietà is very different from the first Pietà that Michelangelo made, which is in St Peter’s Basilica in Rome. That sculpture is very beautiful – in the way you would call such a sculpture ‘beautiful’. However, I have never liked that Pietà because it is too well done. You don’t see the importance of each of the parts that make up the whole. The body of Christ is given the same importance as the folds in the cloth that he lies on – everything is treated the same. In the unfinished Rondanini Pietà, with all its imperfections, you can’t tell if it is really a Pietà or not. The face has been sculpted in a very simple way. It doesn’t look like a Renaissance work of art – more like a guide suggesting how to make a work of art. Some of the parts even look quite abstract. And, for the first time in art history, the Madonna looks like a little grandma, and it seems as if the figure of Christ is carrying her. (It reminds me of a similar scene in Shohei Imamura’s 1983 film The Ballad of Narayama.) I think this portrayal of fragility is very important for this work. A few years ago I saw the Rondanini Pietà in the flesh, at the Castello Sforzesco in Milan. It was a disappointing experience. They had restored it, and now the Pietà looks too clean and white. I much prefer the memory of looking at the picture of the dirty, grey sculpture in my book. >
From the creators of Artists & Illustrators_ArtStudent 11
gillian wearing on james ensor PrivAtE collEction. JAmES EnSor © DAcS 2012; courtESy mAurEEn PAlEy, lonDon. © GilliAn WEArinG
I love James Ensor because he was obsessed with masks. I too have the same passion for disguise and changes of identity. In my work I conceal in order to reveal depths of the self, whereas Ensor showed how we are all but masks hiding our real selves under a façade. It is the opposite of what the sociologist Erving Goffman would have called the ‘front stage’ personality, when we perform to an audience, as opposed to ‘back stage’ behaviour when no one is watching and we drop our guard. Ensor showed the back stage as the mask, hiding the more banal centre inside. What you saw was the satirized individual who could not help but show their true colours. The Great Judge shows a group of masks. The bodies are awkward and ill-fitting with the masks; some of the heads seem to rest on top of a body as if the body was a shelf and this was a still-life painting. Carnival masks sit alongside masks from Noh theatre and the Commedia dell’Arte, which are particularly fitting, as there is a sense of grim humour hanging over the work. A scared-looking skeleton (who represents the judge) looks like he is being mocked and cornered by the other masks. Are they trying to confront death, the final judgment for everyone, or are they laughing in the face of it? But that laugh would be hollow, since death is the ultimate judge and always wins. When I use a mask I see it as a layer waiting to be peeled back to reveal 12 ArtStudent_From the creators of Artists & Illustrators
meaning. I see the masks we create for ourselves as being another self or selves, and believe that these personas are necessary for the different social environments we occupy. Ensor painted masks before psychoanalysis would have become widely understood and available as source material. His use of disguise could be traced back to his early life. Ensor’s grandmother owned a souvenir shop, which, among other things, sold bric-a-brac, dolls, vases and carnival masks, and he would often be confronted by his grandmother wearing a ‘frightful mask’ before a carnival – a woman in her sixties trying to scare and entertain a five-year-old boy. One of the reasons I chose this painting instead of many similar works by Ensor is that The Great Judge has a plain background. I prefer such backgrounds in my own disguise work, reducing everything to what is necessary to capture the essence of the sitter or sitters. It makes the portraits more powerful and arresting. Ensor is an artist who I would place within my spiritual family. Within that family I would also include Cindy Sherman for her disguises and Diane Arbus, who seemed to evoke a mask-like face from every person she photographed, although their eyes would tell you that there were secrets to unfold. Ensor is the grandfather in this family tree – a kindred spirit. _ AS
James Ensor, The Great Judge, 1898, oil on canvas, 63×77cm Gillian Wearing, Me as Warhol in Drag with Scar, 2010, framed bromide print, 147×124cm
This is an extract from In My View – Personal Reflections on Art by Today’s Leading Artists by Simon Grant, published by Thames & Hudson (RRP £19.95). To order your copy at the special price of £14.95 including UK mainland delivery (overseas costs available on request), please call the distributor Littlehampton Book Services on (01903) 828503, quoting “TH191”. Offer is subject to availability. www.thamesandhudson.com
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Artist and Illustrator September 11.indd 1
CourteSy Collezione SAndretto re rebAudengo
fluorescent yellow feathered bear, a suicidal squirrel lying dead on a kitchen table, a projection of a hammered nail; these are just some of the absurd and darkly humorous artworks that will feature in the latest exhibition I have been working on, Collection Sandretto Re Rebaudengo at the Whitechapel Gallery. Acquired by Turin-based art patron and collector Patricia Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, the works on display are part of one of the most important private collections of contemporary art in Europe. During the course of the next year, more than 50 works from the collection will be shown in a series of four consecutive displays. Since its inception in 1901, the Gallery has pioneered the presentation of modern and contemporary art in London. Hosting monographic retrospectives, as well as group shows that explore themes or movements, its exhibition programme has included leading names of art history, as well as young emerging artists of the day. Drawing upon private and public collections is essential to both the research and production of such exhibitions, enabling us to present works of local, national and international importance. Therefore, when the gallery closed its doors to the public to undergo an extensive renovation in 2007, it was a significant decision to dedicate one of the new spaces solely to the display of work from a selected collection. Our ongoing collections programme was created with the purpose of displaying work of historical significance, rarely seen by the public. The programme runs annually, starting in 2009 with displays from British Council Collection. Collection Sandretto Re Rebaudengo will be the programmeâ€™s fourth iteration.
character building The job of the curator is an integral and often unsung part of the exhibition making process. The Whitechapel Galleryâ€™s Poppy Bowers offers insight into the process of handling, managing and displaying eclectic collections
Maurizio Cattelan, Bidibidobidiboo, 1996
> From the creators of Artists & Illustrators_ArtStudent 15
Maurizio Cattelan, Catttelan, 1994
part of our role as curators is to tease out the stories of how these works came to be in this group Identifying the strategies that a collector has adopted in building their collection is what makes curating a show from a single source so interesting. These displays provide a moment to view and explore a collection as a subject, to offer our visitors the opportunity to explore the act of collecting itself; how and why particular works are brought together at a particular moment in time, in a particular place. For myself and the lead curator, Achim BorchardtHume, a period of research to gain a thorough grasp of all
Maurizio Cattelan, Il Bel Paese, 1995
16 ArtStudent_From the creators of Artists & Illustrators
the works in the collection is carried out; reading through object lists, examining photos and visiting the collection to view and experience the work first hand are essential steps taken to unlocking the core strands and identity of this orchestrated group of works. It was through this research that a decision was made to make the first of the four displays a single artist show: Maurizio Cattelan. As an artist hailing from the north of Italy but now settled in New York, Cattelanâ€™s journey and international reputation aptly mirrors the geographical
reach of the collection. Known as the joker and agent provocateur of the art world, his practice utilises different mediums such as photography, performance and sculpture to create work often in response to the circumstances in which it is shown. This broad approach makes his practice difficult to define, reflecting the versatile spirit of the collection whilst his political yet humorous gestures demonstrate an ambivalence that form a strong thread throughout many works in the collection. While working with a collection creates a chance for a serious reflection upon the individual artworks, it also creates a moment to explore the collection as the context in which to read these works afresh. Part of our role as curators of a collection display is to tease out the stories of how these works came to be in this group and the reasoning and circumstances that have driven such acquisitions. Active collections evolve over time, undergoing periods of coherence and times of spontaneity with the collectorâ€™s actions often reflecting the behaviour of the art scene. Patrizia bought her first work by her fellow countryman Cattelan not in Italy but in a small gallery in West London. This transaction began a long-standing relationship between the collector and the artist that not only tells the story of the artwork itself but also illuminates something of the nature of the contemporary art market at a given time. Our Cattelan display will mark the 20th anniversary of Patriziaâ€™s collection, returning her first purchase back to the city in which it was made. Maurizio Cattelan runs from 25 September to 2 December at the Whitechapel Gallery, London E1. www.whitechapelgallery.org
CourteSy Collezione SAndretto re rebAudengo
Founded in 1992, the Sandretto Re Rebaudengo Collection now consists of more than 1,000 works that span sculpture, photography, painting, film, audio and full room installations. Unlike public collections, a private collection is often driven by the character and curiosity of its individual founder; in this case, Patrizia Sandretto Re Rebaudengo. The collection started as a personal endeavour and it became formally organised in 1995 with the opening of the Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, a not-for-profit organisation for the purpose of promoting and interest and critique of contemporary art. The foundation was created in partnership with Italian curator and scholar Francesco Bonami, who was appointed artistic director, and the collection has been formed by this long-standing friendship between the pair. Patrizia is an active member of many international councils including the Tate here in Britain. Since the early 1990s, Francesco has lived in the US, where he works on curatorial projects worldwide, including the 2003 Venice Biennale. The collection, therefore, reflects the internationalism of its leading figures, as well as their knowledge and support of emerging Italian artists. Alongside works by renowned artists such as Pawel Althamer, Mona Hatoum and Cindy Sherman, there are pieces by young Italian artists including Eva Marisaldi and Giuseppe Gabellone. Artists working further afield in Korea, Japan and Poland are also represented in the collection and a number of artists, including Maurizio Cattelan, Douglas Gordon and Glenn Brown, have been supported and collected by Patrizia Sandretto Re Rebaudengo over a number of years.
ʻPortrait of Bryanʼ by Luca Indraccolo
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19/8/12 Artists and12:37:08 Illustrators - 12.091 1
12/09/2012 15:44:39 Richard Learoyd, Man with Octopus Tattoo II (detail), 2011. © Richard Learoyd, courtesy McKee Gallery, New York
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art on the web this page has insecure content
Some of the following may not be true
Our favourite fine art tweeters…
> there are 38 twitter accounts named after Marcel Duchamp.
DaviD sHrigley @DaviDsHrigley
> 98.6% of digital art posted online should have remained on people’s hard drives.
197cm tall. Artist. Likes pens, rulers, etc. Sample tweet: “Mrs Shrig has gone to Essex to buy a dog. We will have an Essex dog. Why Essex? I don’t know.”
> David Hockney has spent more time on the internet than any other living artist.
BoB anD roBerta sMitH @BoBanDroBerta
SHow tHe world
Artist Sample tweet: “@MittRomney America would be crazy to elect you”
takasHi MurakaMi @takasHipoM_en The name’s Takashi Murakami. I’m an artist. The dog with me is named POM. Ain’t she cute? Sample tweet: “If you can read my daily missives with the understanding that they are larger ideas taking root, that would make me happy.”
yoko ono @yokoono #DontFrackMe Tell Gov Cuomo NO to Fracking in New York State Sample tweet: “Your summer dream will always stay in your heart. But your heart is already breathing in the future. Let it breathe the air of the world.”
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INSPIred! BBC’s Your Paintings is attempting to catalogue every oil painting in UK public collections. You can view more than 145,000 currently uploaded at bbc.co.uk/arts/yourpaintings
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nga.gov/podcasts top lectures, videos and podcasts on Miro, gauguin and more | michaelharding.co.uk useful resources for making paints and mediums | galleryoflostart.com stories behind lost artworks, co-produced by tate | mallgalleries.org.uk/bursaries top up your loans with a series of major cash awards
win more than £400 worth of paint sets courtesy of cass art With the new term starting at art colleges across the country, September is the perfect time to stock up on art materials. Art Student has teamed up with Cass Art to offer three lucky readers the chance to win one of three luxury Winsor & Newton paint boxes worth £135 each. Each Chelsea Wooden Box includes 15 tubes of artists’ quality watercolour, two sable brushes, a palette, a sponge and a putty rubber.
to enter for your chance to win, just visit www.artistsandillustrators.co.uk/cassart To find out more about Cass Art, visit www.cassart.co.uk or call their flagship store in islington on (020) 7354 2999. the closing date for all entries is 15 november 2012. Terms and conditions apply. For full details, go to www.chelseamagazines.com/terms-and-conditions From the creators of Artists & Illustrators_ArtStudent 19
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Andrew Hood, Road Side
If the realities of leaving art college are daunting, why not share the stress? Alice Wright talks to a range of artists who believe in the power of the collective
s art students prepare to leave the support systems of university and college behind, the working world can seem a very intimidating place. Making that transition is tricky for any student, but the path is a little smoother for those entering the routine and security of nine-to-five jobs. Art graduates often face taking those first steps alone, and that can be a daunting prospect. To avoid the isolation, risks and costs of going it alone, some choose to link up with fellow artists, forming collectives that can provide a supportive base from which to launch a career. Traditionally, collectives were based around sharing the cost of a larger studio space but in the age of the Internet, they have become looser and more organic. While some collectives are still formed around a physical location, many now exist predominantly online. Aims can range from splitting costs to pursuing joint ventures or simply acting as a sounding board for ideas. Jamaica Street Artists in Bristol is an example of just how successful collectives can be. Founded almost 20
years ago by a small group of artists looking to share a space, it is now one of the largest artist-led studios outside London. It currently provides affordable studio space for 45 fine artists, illustrators and filmmakers. Andrew Hood, studio manager at Jamaica Street, explains that from modest beginnings the collective has developed a formal structure which means a few people can run it for the benefit of all, allowing the other artists to concentrate on their work.
The studio even employs someone to promote shows. But collectives don’t have to be on such an ambitious scale. Illustrator Emma Carpendale wanted to be part of a supportive, creative network after she graduated from the University of Northampton in 2010 so she joined with seven fellow graduates to found the Edge Arts Collective. “We were all aware that when you leave university you’re a bit alone, so it was about keeping the connection going,” she says.
The Edge Arts Collective is a mix of illustrators and artists, and Emma has particularly enjoyed working with a different discipline, picking up ideas from the fine artists that have fed into her own work. “The collaboration, bouncing ideas off each other, is the main impetus for most of us,” she says. The group is scattered around the Midlands so most communication is done via email but they meet regularly to discuss their work and have organised two group shows.
A Jamaica Street Artists Open Studio event in 2011
> From the creators of Artists & Illustrators_ArtStudent 21
Jill Wales, Video Projection onto Concrete
Kate Thomas, Untitled
start me up
Six tips for organising your own collective
traditionally, collectives were based around sharing studio costs but they’ve become looser and more organic in the internet age Sharing resources and skills to organise viable shows is one of the main attractions for many artists joining a collective, and most will aim to show their work together on a regular basis. In the case of Edge, Emma believes the eclectic mix of artists involved has also added to the success of their exhibitions. “It gives people more of a selling point that we’re a really dynamic group with lots of different things going on. If you come to an exhibition, you’re going to see lots of different stuff.” Artist Nicola Anthony also recognises the benefits of working collectively. Having studied at Central St Martins and Loughborough University, she set up the London Artists Collective in 2006 to bring together like-minded artists who were working around the capital. “It’s very easy for artists to get absorbed in their own work – you’re in your own little bubble,” she says.
“Collectives can encourage you to be challenged by other people. You’re also sharing contacts and sharing tips, such as which galleries to approach. “You can get a lot from working in a group, particularly in London where there’s so much going on. It’s very hard to link into that yourself, but you can link into that as a network.” London Artists Collective grew to encompass about 100
Emma Carpendale, Symbolic Portrait of August Strindberg
22 ArtStudent_From the creators of Artists & Illustrators
artists and, although it still exists, Nicola explains that it has been “wound down”. “It ended up being quite a large group and the learning point was that there was an optimum number in there to have a nurturing group.” However, through coming together in the London Artists Collective, many members have since formed new collaborations and partnerships. Nicola herself has joined a new collective, Fabelist. She is also working on a transatlantic project connecting the art worlds in Singapore and London. “It’s not a collective as such but it’s taking the key things from working collectively, the conversations and the dialogues that can go on between artists.” And having gained so much from being involved in collectives, she wholeheartedly encourages other graduates to set up their own. “Start small and see where it takes you,” she says. _AS
Agree from the start what you want to achieve. Is it just about sharing costs or are you interested in collaborating? Do you want a formal structure or to be more relaxed? Discuss honestly how much everyone is prepared to commit – both financially and in terms of time. Consider a manifesto. Having established your aims and objectives, think about writing them down in an informal manifesto so everyone is clear on your goals. But be prepared to evolve as it develops. Be business-like. You will be dealing with galleries, venues and collectors so you must be professional. Consider assigning jobs so that someone deals with marketing, another with finances and so on. Be generous with one another. It can be tempting to keep contacts to yourself, but the strength of a collective is in sharing resources. Try to raise a start-up fund, perhaps with a sale of work, and invest this in promoting the collective. Do your research. Artists involved in established collectives will usually be more than happy to pass on advice. If you’re looking for affordable studio space, the National Federation of Artists’ Studio Providers – www.nfasp.org.uk – can offer advice and support.
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Paris THE DISTRICT
Rendezvous in Belleville or head to Père-Lachaise and Gambetta in the east.
THE STYLE You don’t need us to tell you that art runs through the blood of Paris, perhaps more than any other city on earth, as painters gather in squares and fine art is sold by the Seine. The touristic parts can feel a bit stuck in the past but dig deep and you’ll see a youthful vibe in the east of the city, particularly in the nightlife around the Rue Oberkampf.
THE BENEFITS It’s all about the history. Wouldn’t you like to be able to walk to the Louvre while you’re studying? Or pop to the Pompidou for some inspiration? Of course you would. There’s an incredible history of art in this beautiful and historic city and much of it is on display. The attitude is more encouraging too. You’ll never be mocked for your art in Paris – that’s what the Anglais do.
© Steve pill; © AlexAndre GuirkinGer; © pierre FAhyS; © pAriS touriSt oFFice - photoGrApher : Amélie dupont; © pAriS touriSt oFFice - photoGrApher : dAvid leFrAnc - Architect : renzo piAno et richArd roGerS
THE DESTINATIONS In short: stay east. Head to the bar at the Philippe Starck-designed Mama Shelter Hotel or the 1990s Britpop-themed Le Motel and the dive bars surrounding it. Alimentation Generale and the whole area around Republique. Director David Lynch’s club, Silencio (top right), is achingly cool, while there’s also Montmartre or the Left Bank for a spot of old school Parisian café culture.
If you’re looking to continue your artistic studies after foundation or degree level, Europe’s hottest cities have plenty to offer, as Chris Beanland discovers
THE STUDIES There are, unsurprisingly, a slew of art schools in the French capital, so you can afford to be choosy. The Ecole Parsons is a well-respected offshoot of the Paris School of Art, which does offer bursaries. Meanwhile, the famous Sorbonne is split into different parts now – the PantheonSorbonne University houses the illustrious institution’s art department.
THE RESIDENTS From masters such as Dali, Renoir and Picasso, through to contemporary talents such as Olivier Kosta-Théfaine and David Liver, a stint in Paris is de rigueur for any self-respecting artist. > From the creators of Artists & Illustrators_ArtStudent 25
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THE DISTRICT Kreuzberg is still the place for art students, but the more residential Prenzlauerberg’s is packed with pop-up galleries and studios, too.
THE STYLE Europe’s coolest capital bristles with creativity from top to bottom. Berlin has been a place for outsiders and artists for more than a century and that spirit of individuality runs deep. Music, clubbing, art and culture are elevated beyond mere play: here, they are central to everyday life.
viSitberlin.de © Günter Steffen; CourteSy: bourouinA GAllery/ berlin. Photo: romAn märz; © Steve Pill; © miChelberGer hotel
THE BENEFITS Have you seen how cheap the rent is? An estimated 5,000 artists live and work in the German capital. You can score a loft on your own or share with likeminded friends from around the globe and see how your work develops, knowing that you won’t have to wait tables and fret over your last fiver like you’d need to in London.
THE DESTINATIONS The impressive HBC looks out over East Berlin’s Alexanderplatz. Housed in the former Hungarian cultural centre, it’s still a bustling hub today, with a café, restaurant, cinema and gallery combo. Also look out for opening nights at Kreuzberg’s Chert, a gallery that has amassed a notably international roster of artists since it opened in 2008. And if you’re planning a weekend visit, the Michelberger Hotel is the place to stay, while the Watergate and Berghain are both legendary techno clubs that have to be seen to be believed.
THE STUDIES Adam Saks, Harvest, 2012
The city’s University of the Arts offers exchange programmes, which include German language study. The School of Art and Design Berlin Weissensee is a legendary art school, founded by artists associated with the Bauhaus school. Bursaries are limited: some links can be found on the Studenten Werk Berlin website though.
THE RESIDENTS Early 20th century expressionist Käthe Kollwitz has a museum devoted to her in Charlottenburg, while Danish painter Adam Saks and US installation artist John von Bergen are among the contemporary talents calling Berlin home. > From the creators of Artists & Illustrators_ArtStudent 27
BARCELONA THE STYLE In Spain’s cultural nexus, the political is inextricably tied up with artistic. The current economic problems have seen communes break out and artists making ever more political works.
THE BENEFITS The weather, the beach, the beautiful people, the architecture, the museums and galleries, the collaborative spirit of the Catalans – Barca has it all.
THE DESTINATIONS The bars of Plaza Del Sol are big student hangouts, while the MACBA gallery provides a good social hub. Avoid the tourist-dominated Ramblas at all costs. Art students and graduates usually congregate around the El Raval and Gràcia neighbourhoods, while Poble Sec has increasingly become a popular hipster hangout.
THE STUDIES The Universitat de Barcelona (UB) is the leading public university of Spain and its art school is recognised internationally for the quality of teaching on offer. However, with Spain’s current economic woes it might prove tricky to come by any kind of bursary.
LISBON THE STYLE
Of late, Lisbon has been re-imagining itself in the mould of a Portuguese Barcelona, and boy is it working out well for them. Stunning architecture abounds yet the rest of the city is flaky and faded, adding to the overall feel of this stunning city built on seven hills.
THE BENEFITS With the Calouste Gulbenkian Gallery and Museum firing on all cylinders, the centre of the city is being transformed with galleries and design hotels. The light and the incredible cityscape could prove inspirational. Studio rents remain pretty cheap here, too – particularly around Estrela and Chiado.
THE STUDIES The Faculty Of Fine Arts in Lisbon is Portugal’s top art school. Course fees are waived if you’re an international student and it offers an exchange programme. _ AS 28 ArtStudent_From the creators of Artists & Illustrators
iStock; ccB © turiSmo de LiSBoA / www.viSitLiSBoA.com
Galeria Alecrim50 is the pick of the burgeoning art scene. Hard up students can get beers for next to nothing in the hipster dive bars of the Bairro Alto, plus you get to ride one of the famous elevators up to the top of town. For clubbing head to Lux, John Malkovich’s dockside pleasure palace – you won’t believe the roof terrace ‘til you’ve seen it.
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(send a cheque for £59.99 payable to Artists & Illustrators. Be sure to include your name and address with your order). From the creators of Artists & Illustrators_ArtStudent 29
10 minutes with…
jim shaw The Michigan-born California Institute of the Arts graduate is perhaps best known for inventing the Oism religion. His paintings are filled with surreal pop references and a major new survey of his work, The Rinse Cycle, opens at BALTIC, Gateshead on 9 November.
As a guy from the Midwest, how did you enjoy art college in Los Angeles? Cal Arts seemed like a great escape from the winters and slow death of Michigan. There was a nude swimming pool, crazy orgies that I was never a party to, and a history of largesse that was over by the time we got there. My memories of school were that there was a lot of guilt and moral condemnation: one visiting artist was scorned because a large painting of hers was photographed in a corporate boardroom. None of us had any idea of art world success, which at the time seemed to consist of being on the receiving end of federal arts grants. What was your big breakthrough? My inclusion in a show called CalArts Skeptical Belief(s) at the Renaissance Society in Chicago in 1987 was the first one to get me attention outside of Los Angeles. Since 1992, your art has been exploring America’s relationship with religion.
the music. However, today many of my research and musical needs can be met by the computer, so there really is no actual need to collect anymore. The amount of images of, say, 1960s beehive hairdos you can collect on the web is near infinite.
What personal conclusions have you drawn? I guess I’ve concluded that America isn’t that different from Afghanistan: we have a large population of religiously conservative, tribally oriented folks with a deep suspicion of the central government; folks who love their weapons and are traditionally located in the mountainous regions. There’s always a stream of fantastical pop culture influences in your art. Are you an avid collector? I am, but as I get older I consider what a curse objects can be when I have to move them, or when I die. The only collections I really care for anymore are the books and
What’s the biggest myth about being an artist? The myths about being an artist are in flux. When I was a kid, an artist was a drunk who lived in his studio and told everybody off. My generation went to grad school and we were smarter than the rest of the world – or so we thought. For a while, students seemed to think they would be the next Jeff Koons, living in hotel rooms, screwing porn stars and getting rich. Hopefully this myth is gone. What do you know now that you wish you’d known at 21? I wish I’d known that I was allergic to cow dairy and wheat products, and that I’d worked harder on my posture, which is now slumping irrevocably. Oh, and I wish I’d bought some Apple stock! _AS
Jim Shaw, Capitol Viscera Appliances, 2011, mural
PHOTO: LeeAnn nickeL, LOS AngeLeS. cOurTeSy Of THe ArTiST And SimOn Lee gALLery, LOndOn
30 ArtStudent_From the creators of Artists & Illustrators
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