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editor-in-chief: rima nasser +961 3 852 899 editor: kasia maciejowska contributing writers: rich thornton india stoughton miriam lloyd-evans jennifer hattam anya stafford rebecca sinha

printing chamas for printing & publishing s.a.l. graphic design: peter korneev

Paul Guiragossian, Retrouvailles, 1989, oil on canvas. Image courtesy Paul Guiragossian Collection


Safwan Dahoul Almost a Dream

5 February - 15 March 2014

ayyam gallery|DIFC


What’s Inside


stanbul, London, Abu Dhabi, Brussels – for this first international issue of the Art Paper we have crisscrossed the planet seeing many shows and many more artworks. Inspired, enthused, and sometimes pleasantly confused, we review Frieze and Frieze Masters, Contemporary Istanbul and Art Abu Dhabi through our own eyes, adding also a glance over Art Basel Miami, for a wider look across the global fairs that dominate the art market in the year’s closing months. We also go deeper: Wael Shawky takes the British Museum’s new curator for the Middle East Miriam Lloyd-Evans around his current exhibition at the Serpentine Gallery, London for us, and Sam Bardaouil and Till Fellrath of Art Reoriented speak with Rebecca Sinha about curating Paul Guiragossian: The Human Condition, at the Beirut Exhibition Centre. Zooming in on one or two highlights from


words: kasia maciejowska

Frieze and Frieze Masters, we interview rising curator Nicola Lees, whose work for the Frieze Foundation considers time, space and experience at the fair. We take a closer look at the retrospective of surrealist Wilfredo Lam, by Galerie Gmurzynska at Frieze Masters, which stood out for its unusual reconstruction of the experimental 1940s exhibition designs of Frederick Kiesler. Later in our pages you will find the fantastic detail of Raqib Shaw’s immense paintings, showing simultaneously at three of Pace Gallery’s New York spaces, alongside fractious collages by Syrian painter Rabee Kiwan, at Mark Hachem gallery. An interview with Turkish collector Öner Kocabeyoglu gives an insight into art viewed from the other side, and we pick out the freshest new exhibition spaces from New York, London, Paris, Sydney and Marrakech – you may like to visit in 2014.

Follow the latest updates from the Beirut Art Fair via the Selections app.

what’s inside

Magazine now on your tablet

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Nilbar Güreş, Below Elsewhere’s Palmtrees, 2012, shown at Rampa Gallery, Istanbul at Frieze Art Fair 2013

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wael shawky: review

words: miriam lloyd-evans


About the writer: Miriam Lloyd-Evans recently took up the position of Lead Curator: International Engagement Team (Middle East), at the British Museum. She previously curated international exhibitions with Edge of Arabia.


Cabaret Crusades The Path to Cairo, 2012 HD video


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like being a transformer of ideas”, Wael Shawky whispers excitedly as we tour his new exhibition, Al Qurban, opening this week at the Serpentine Gallery. He is talking about his Cabaret Crusades, a work that delicately picks apart the gigantic subject matter of one history’s most horrific episodes. Shawky, who buries himself obsessively in the academic aspect of his research, elaborates saying, “Both works are based on books – but more than believing in the history, I am fascinated by transforming it all into a new visual experience”. And what an experience it is. Wael Shawky’s work intelligently creates multilayered narratives that deal with common truths and their recollection in the history books. Like an alchemist he delicately examines the social connotations of the Crusades from the perspective of someone who grew up in Mecca and now lives in Alexandria, where he was born in 1971. The results are impactful works that serve as powerful brain food while also looking stunning. The exhibition at the Serpentine opens with a

case displaying a cast of 24 hand-made marionettes. With bulging eyes, long eyelashes, delicate clothing and incredible character – ranging from priest to camel, peasant to queen - they bring to life the brutality of the Crusades, this time told from an Arabian perspective. These puppets feature here in two films, Cabaret Crusades: The Horror Show File (2010) and The Path to Cairo (2012). Both have intricate stage sets, intense musical scores composed by the artist (think haunting fairgrounds) and a script performed in Classical Arabic which has been adapted from Amin Maalouf’s study The Crusades through Arab Eyes.

Both films hold a tension symptomatic of Shawky’s work, which can be grotesque yet playful, innocent and dark, historical but with contemporary connotations. The marionettes function perfectly as a symbol of the absurd and the unbelievable, so often a part of history once it has become mythologized by the story-making process of writing history. “I’m really criticizing the real but not real”, Shawky says, pointing

towards questions around the ‘realities’ of history. Shawky’s puppets were inspired by a speech made by Pope Urban II, the Head of the Catholic Church from 1088 to 1099, that supposedly lasted two days and inspired more than 600,000 Christians to march from Europe to Jerusalem, massacring, plundering and looting as they went. Shawky points out that the speech was only documented after its delivery and says this

“I like being a transformer of ideas”

WS Al Araba al Madfouna 2012, video

WS Al Araba al Madfouna 2012, video


leads him to consider how second-hand information can be manipulated and distorted to motivate war in the name of religion. Never professing to tell the ‘truth’, Shawky avoids the trap of claiming to interrogate a myth, or social construct, while in doing so re-perpetuating or replacing it. He avoids the singular narrative and in doing so succeeds in generating complex discourses that question the problematic nature of a singular historical truth. The other of his works on show, Al Araba Al Madfuna II (2013) is a beautifully shot black and white film named after a village that Shawky has visited where Al Qurban takes place. Al Qurban is a mythical practice as outlined by Egyptian novelist Mohamed Mustagab whereby local people, aided by a shaman and using magical spells and passages from the Qur’an, search for underground tombs that hold Pharaonic golden treasure. Children play the characters of villagers who re-tell (through narrated adult voices and dress) the ongoing (illegal) practice. “What fascinates me is how this society is

Wael Shawky, installation view at the Serpentine Gallery, 2013, © 2013, Hugo Glendinning

Wael Shawky, installation view at the Serpentine Gallery, 2013 © 2013, Hugo Glendinning

Wael Shawky, Al Qurban, runs at the Serpentine Gallery until 9th February 2014. Upcoming exhibitions of work by Wael Shawky include Dictums at the Lisson Gallery, London from 31st January until 8th March 2014 and a solo show at MoMA PS1, New York, later in 2014. MASS, the artist residency and education space founded by Shawky in 2010 in Alexandria is due to re-open following refurbishment in Summer/Autumn of 2014.

using a metaphysical system in order for them to reach a material physical system, in the form of gold”. Child actors serve a similar function to puppets in the film as they remove many aspects that adults carry concerning history, judgement, innocence, gender or sexual layers, and the acting skill – allowing

the viewer to have a more open interpretation of the tales that Shawky weaves. This outstanding and touching exhibition is not for the faint hearted. Its myriad levels and heavy subject-matter take time to understand and stomach to witness, particularly when combined with the exhibition of works by

Jake and Dinos Chapman showing concurrently at the Serpentine. Those viewers who wish to persevere however will be richly rewarded as Shawky is an important expressive artist from our generation who uses his full toolbox of enquiry, technical skill, wonderful storytelling, and a touch of magic.

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Berta Fischa, Iltyd, acril glass, 2013, Galerie Barbara Weiss

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Rana Begum, No 461 and No 463, paint on mirror finish stainless steel, 2013, The Third Line Gallery Bojan Sarcevic, Tridiminished, burning candle on onyx, 2013, Stuart Shave Modern Art

Style and Subversion (I-V), Fig. 2, David Lieske, Corvi Mora Gallery

The format may be familiar but the art at Frieze is what keeps it at the top



frieze art fair: review


rieze Art Fair felt easy going this year. The gigantism was flashy – big shiny Jeff Koons and huge conceptual Dan Graham. The VIP area was full of faces at lunch and bodies drinking champagne. The galleries were a little bit more spaced out than before. Things were easy to navigate. The bookshop was great. But there was no shock-factor. A not unpleasant and familiar balance was struck between interactive installation works by up-and-coming artists from Brooklyn or Peckham, and famous hit-list art by names like Hirst and Gursky. At Frieze you always find at least one portrait of Kate Moss. Because Moss sells, of course, and she makes people walk into the booth to take a look. Most enjoyably, back in October, there were several pieces that evidently engaged visitors over and over again. Esther Schipper showed bewitching little aquarium installations by Pierre Huyghe which proved ceaselessly popular, while a giant tree with captivating mise-en-scenes around it drew ongoing attention at Stuart Shave. Similarly effective but significantly more risqué, Lutz Bacher’s

words: kasia maciejowska

wonderful photographs and sculpture sat with contrasting totemic pole structures by Isa Genzken and the pair collaboratively garnered much praise, particularly as the Institute of Contemporary Art had a powerful solo show by Bacher on during that same week. Most high profile, in part because of their position at the fair, were Nan Goldin’s new work Eyes and Bar, a celebrated painting by Marcin Maciejowski at Wilkinson Gallery. Perhaps the most accessible, but also one of the best, of White Cube’s artists Fred Tomaselli was also notably captivating with his signature illustrative painting style on show in Torso. David Lieske’s bright-onblack works at Corvi Mora were popular and Timothy Taylor had a surprise hit with ceramics by Simon Carroll. A handful of galleries showed interesting historic pieces. Broadway 1602 for example featured Bauhaus artist Xanti Schawinsky’s high-impact contemporary-looking Eclipses. Frieze is a place where the absurd becomes

acceptable, and at times even preferable. Just one example – the excellent (and fashionable) Brooklyn collective the Bruce High Quality Foundation made mini replicas of objects from the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Moulded from PlayDoh, they were priced at between $6,500 and $38,000 each. Compare this with Koons’ brazen cartoonish centrepieces at Gagosian, which included the $22 million Sacred Heart (blue/ magenta). Sales reports from Frieze always sound sensational. Pace Gallery sold a Vik Muniz for $100,000 and a Yoshitomo Nara for $300,000 – to name only two of a long list. Marian Goodman sold some Gerhard Richters. Marianne Boesky sold all of the five paintings by Kon Trubkovich, each priced in the $40-$60,000 range. Frieze is more ‘affordable’ than its partner fair Frieze Masters and prices range from a mere $20,000 up to more like $200,000. Matthew Slotover and Amanda Sharp founded Frieze in 1991 having produced Frieze magazine

together for years. So, although a commercial fair, Frieze has a passion and a depth that sets it apart from the majority of other similar circuses around the world. The Frieze Foundation, also set up in 1991, ensures that independent curation remains alive at the fair through its programme of Film, Music and Projects. The foundation continues to expand across cultural sectors, making Frieze a cross-medium voice that can be heard loudly across the Arts. Even The Tate buys art here (James Richards, Christina Mackie, Sturtevant and Terry Adkins this year). Frieze feels very confident, although predictable in its format. 70,000 visitors in six days is plenty of confidenceboosting footfall. But remembering to really look at the works is the thing. Proposing such a vast quantity of world class art jumbled up side by side means visitors gain a different perspective to that which a museum or more formal gallery provides. At

Fred Tomaselli, Torso (large), 1999, painting, leaves, pills, photocopies, acrylic, resin on wood panel, White Cube Gallery


Frieze you immediately grasp which art speaks to you and which doesn’t. It may be easy to get blasé after visiting 50 galleries in a row but each time you come across something that you like, you are reminded of why it is still worth coming back to Frieze – not only to see another framed photo of Kate Moss.

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rieze Masters stole the show from its sister fair. Everybody said so. Of course it did! It was full of incredibly beautiful and exemplary works by Pieter Brueghel, Alexander Calder, Pablo Picasso, Yayoi Kusama etc. It had dove grey walls and soft carpet. It had religious icons from the Renaissance. It had restraint. It had class. New York galleries were

heavily represented, with positive results for sales and quality. Donald Ellis exhibited shamanic masks alongside drawings by Jackson Pollock in a series of inspired juxtapositions. Acquavella Galleries, New York sold a 1961 Picasso to the Greek collector Dimitri Mavromatis for $7 million. Mnuchin Gallery, New York sold a 1980s Willem de Kooning for $8 million.

Vedovi Gallery, Brussels exhibited two fabulous paintings by Jean Michel Basquiat, one of which sold for close to $5 million. Ed Ruscha’s red graphic Mysteries, shown by Anthony Meier, was as appealing as ever, as were Eva Hesse’s untitled inks on paper at the same gallery. Judy Chicago’s rainbow bright drawings and sculpture were eye-catching

at Riflemaker, and equally so the 1970s paintings of Aref Rayess at Agial. Carved black ebony panels by Indian artist F.N. Souza proposed a dark and singular vision at the Grosvenor Gallery and Galeria Berenice Arvani’s selection of graphic logotype emblems by Rubem Valentim gave some pared-back relief to all the painterly richesse found in many of the booths.

Ed Ruscha, Mysteries, red graphic, Anthony Meier Gallery


Dance Mask, Yup’ik Kuskokwim River, Alaska, 19th century wood, pigments, vegetal fibers. Collected along the Kuskokwim River between 1905 and 1941 by Robert Gierke, a trader based in Bethel, Alaska. David Ellis Gallery

Frieze Masters offered up booth after booth of important works from the full gamut of Art History

words: kasia maciejowska

Drawing by Jackson Pollock, ink and paint on paper, David Ellis Gallery

Aref Rayess, from the Life Cycle triptych, oil on canvas, 1970, Agial Gallery



frieze masters: review

Jean Michel Basquiat, Harlem paper product, 1987, acrylic, oilstick and xerox collage on canvas, Vedovi Gallery

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frieze projects: in focus

Nicola Lees curates time specific art in the throng of Frieze Art Fair

Lili ReynaudDewar, Photograph Polly Braden, Image courtesy Frieze The Temple of Play, Angelo Plessas, Photograph by Polly Braden, Image courtesy Frieze



words: kasia maciejowska

Ken Okiishi, Photograph by Polly Braden, Image courtesy Frieze

Nicola Lees, curator of the Frieze Foundation

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icola Lees was appointed curator of the Frieze Foundation in 2013 having previously been senior curator of public programmes at the Serpentine Gallery in London. She tells the Art Paper about her first Frieze Projects and how she goes about commissioning for an art fair. How did you approach Frieze Projects this year? This year I wanted to bring all the commissions together and show them in one architectural space, which was itself a Project. Greek architect Andreas Angelidakis created one focused environment for the projects’ activities, with a very different feel and atmosphere from the rest of the fair. The bespoke structure housed a programme of performances and installations by Rivane Neuenschwander, Ken Okiishi, Lili Reyaud Dewar, Gerry Bibby and Josef Strau. The area definitely had a pop-up feel to it, with great energy created both by the artists commissions and the audience.

In some ways, what all Frieze Projects shared was that none of them really finished or had a final moment of objectification. The commissions unfolded at different times throughout the week of the fair and Angelidakis’ design was strategic in that it shifted the emphasis onto different projects at different moments. Would you approach it differently next year? I would like to build upon the existing relationships with the partner institutions we established this year to pursue a programme of large-scale co-commissions. The number of projects will likely be reduced to four for 2014.

Does Frieze Projects offer a particular context for exhibiting that is different to a gallery or an art fair stand? The five-day timeline of the fair is a unique context, which lends itself very well to time-based and interdisciplinary formats. Integrated programming is central to my practice as a curator and I wish to continue pushing the Frieze Projects programme in this direction by bringing its strands closer together. The non-commercial nature of Frieze Projects is key to

the development of the commissions as it allows the artists to create new works without the pressure of the art market. What are the differences between how you curated for the Serpentine and how you curate for Frieze? In my previous role the Serpentine Gallery I curated a range of performances, screenings, talks and publications, which opened a discourse around the gallery’s exhibitions as well as its architectural pavilions. These projects really shaped

my interest in working with time-based artworks but at Frieze Projects the time-span is extremely concentrated over only five days and this inevitably requires an approach to commissioning that is both site and time-specific. How did you work with each artist to develop their exhibits? One of the most exciting aspects of my role at Frieze Foundation is the possibility to commission new works in close dialogue with a range of artists, both

Temple of Play, Angelo Plessas, Photograph Polly Braden, Image courtesy Frieze


established and emerging names. In 2013 my team included Kate Coyne as Producer and Stella Bottai as Assistant Curator; the three of us worked closely with the artists from idea conception through to realisation and it was very exciting to see the artists’ concepts materialize over time and unfold to the public during the five days of the fair. I wanted the artists to feel that they could experiment, take risks, and potentially make works that would ask more questions than they answer.

Why is it important to have site and time specific commissions at an art fair like Frieze? A wide range of audiences come to Frieze, many of them not only to buy art. A large proportion of the public attending the fair is interested in contemporary art outside of its market value. It is important to address this interest and broaden the potential for discourse and discussion.

Galerie Gmurzynska reconstructed the experimental exhibition designs of Frederick Kiesler for a retrospective of paintings by Wilfredo Lam at Frieze Masters

frieze masters: in focus


er head dropped back, her figure outlined behind a semi-sheer curtain, she stared at the ceiling. What was she doing, this woman in the Galerie Gmurzynska space? She was looking at a picture - of course, it was Frieze Masters and the halls were heaving with some of the most covetable works in the history of art. Its repetitive walls of dove grey panels make Frieze Masters a prime location at which to stage an outré reconsideration of how to exhibit art. Who better to sympathise with Frederick

words: kasia maciejowska

Kiesler’s assertion that “If you like your pictures hung on the wall at about eye level […] you’re conventional minded, commercial [and] bourgeois” than someone who has been trekking through Frieze’s formulaic trenches for 48 hours? In a welcome alternative to the commercial, often un-thematic way that galleries tend to exhibit at art fairs, the Swiss Galerie Gmurzynska mounted a conceptual display that recreated a moment from the history of Modern Art. In 1947, Kiesler designed

an exhibition of Wilfredo Lam’s paintings at New York’s Hugo Gallery in a show called Bloodflames, curated by art critic Nicolas Calas. His hanging schemes showed paintings against dark colours and abstract shapes and positioned visitors in a rectangle of semi-sheer curtains to view artwork on the ceiling. These detailed experiential techniques for viewing art were a signature of Kiesler’s, intended to generate more cohesion between artwork and viewer. In the 1947 Bloodflames

Original exhibition design by Frederick Kiesler for Bloodflames 1947 at Hugo Gallery Image, Courtesy Kiesler Archive



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The Galerie Gmurzynska reconstruction of Bloodflames 1947 at Frieze Masters 2013

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Original exhibition design by Frederick Kiesler for Bloodflames 1947, Image courtesy Kiesler Archive


catalogue he wrote, “We, the inheritors of chaos, must be the architects of a new unity.” He succeeded in integrating art into the gallery in so far as his techniques transformed paintings into installation pieces, of which his designs were part. Several surrealist artists, including David Hare and Matta were shown with Lam’s work in 1947, whereas the Frieze Masters reconstruction focused solely on the work of Lam, serving as a solo retrospective of this important artist whose paintings helped shape the

canonical collection of Peggy Guggenheim. Kiesler and Lam were friends for many years and the Gmurzynska exhibition catalogue features photographs of them together and playful portraits by Kiesler of Lam. Kiesler was a progressive designer who associated with the artistic European avantgardes that coloured the twentieth century. Born in 1890 he lived in Vienna and worked closely with members of the De Stijl movement there and premiered the film Ballet Mécanique with Man Ray, before moving to New York in 1926, at the height of the Roaring Twenties. In New York, Kiesler

The original Bloodflames 1947 exhibition at Hugo Gallery New York. Image courtesy Kiesler Archive

“If you like your pictures hung on the wall at about eye level you’re conventional minded” – Frederick Kiesler

The Galerie Gmurzynska reconstruction of Bloodflames 1947 at Frieze Masters 2013, with curved wall, angled artworks at various heights, and sheer curtains


associated with the Surrealists, many of them European emigrés, most famously Marcel Duchamp. Kiesler designed Peggy Guggenheim’s first gallery, The Art of this Century, which featured his experimental spaces for showing surrealist, kinetic and abstract art. Here his Surrealist Gallery sometimes plunged viewers into darkness while his Abstract Gallery showed artworks suspended in mid-air on ropes. Against Kiesler’s curved ultramarine canvas walls and rotating contraptions Guggenheim exhibited Salvador Dalí, Alberto Giacometti, Wassily

Kandinsky, Joan Miró, Pablo Picasso, Alexander Calder, Willem de Kooning and Mark Rothko (to name but a few). Jackson Pollock had his first solo show at The Art of This Century in 1943. Kiesler’s work as an artist in his own right has been acknowledged by exhibitions at the Whitney, New York, in the 1980s and the Pompidou in Paris in the 1990s. Although considered a radical, he had the backing of New York’s leading art and architecture institutions. During the 1930s and 1940s he taught architecture at Columbia University and saw his design works exhibited at the MoMA.



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We round up some of the best art spaces that have opened during the past year


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new galleries around the world

Gallerie Perrotin

Dominique LEVY


New York Situated on the ground floor of 909 Madison Avenue, Emmanuel Perrotin launched this New York edition of his edgy Paris space in Le Marais only a year after the opening of his Hong Kong franchise in May 2012. Not just famous for discovering now-heavyweights Maurizio Cattelan and Takashi Murakami, Perrotin has collaborated with musicians such as Feist, Massive Attack and N.E.R.D. Knowing this, it was no surprise to see Pharrell Williams at the glamorous September opening party, where Italian artist Paola Pivi filled the floor with eight, life-size, neon sculptures of polar bears.

New York Sitting right on top of Emmanuel Perrotin’s ground floor space is Dominique Lévy’s first foray as a commercial gallerist. The space confidently covers the first, second and third floor of the historic Upper-East side building. Connoisseur, collector and advisor Lévy is considered an expert in the work of post-war masters Alexander Calder, Alberto Giacometti, Yves Klein, Mark Rothko, and Andy Warhol and also represents work from the most important women artists of the late20th-century such as Barbara Kruger, Laurie Anderson, Cindy Sherman, Jenny Holzer and Louise Bourgeois. During her role as director of private sales of modern and contemporary art at Christie’s she co-founded the Los Angeles gallery L&M Arts but split with partner Robert Mnuchin to go it alone earlier this year.

London This year’s Frieze London saw the re-launch of Robin Mann’s and Margherita Berloni’s previously titled EB&Flow gallery in a new central London space. Now simply called Berloni, the gallery now states its aim to work closely with their artists in order to support them more thoroughly, saying, “We don’t see our artists as commodities; we genuinely get inspired by their work”. In keeping with this the duo plan to convert a back room of the gallery into residential studio space for their artists – a considerable investment as the gallery is in Fitzrovia.


Carwan Gallery Beirut Two years after their appearance on the design scene in 2011 Pascale Wakim and Nicolas Lecompte have opened a permanent exhibition space in Beirut. Known for its commitment to collectable design and beautiful craftsmanship, the Carwan name has gradually built up an international reputation via exhibiting in pop-up spaces and at design fairs. The new gallery is set in a space with three glass walls called L’Ebeniste in the Clemenceau area. The gallery opened with an exhibition of various works that announced it as firmly international with designs from Michael Anastassiades (UK), Lindsey Adelman (USA), Taher Asad-Bakhtiari (Iran), Nada Debs (Lebanon), Paul Loebach (USA), India Mahdavi (France), Philippe Malouin (Canada), Studio mischer’traxler (Austria), Khalid Shafar (UAE), Oeuffice (Canada) and Tamer Nakisci (Turkey).

Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac Paris Following the format of converting post-industrial warehouse spaces on the outer city limits into gigantic showrooms, the Austrian art magnate Thaddaeus Ropac has set his fourth art gallery in old ironware factory situated in Pantin on the north-eastern side of Paris. After running two significant spaces in Salzburg and one in Le Marais, Ropac said, “We created this new space to give the artists the opportunity to realize their vision without the usual restrictions of space.” Ropac is known for his desire for space, space and more space – each of his other galleries has undergone extensions during their lifespan so he could better show installations by sculptors such as Antony Gormley and Tom Sachs, and to exhibit influential pieces by outstanding artists including Joseph Beuys, Marcin Maciejowski and Cory Arcangel among many others.

Riad 18

M Contemporary

Marrakech As part of the art renaissance currently flooding Marrakech’s old medina, Moroccan photographer Laila Hida has opened an art-space / think-tank intended to host cultural events and house the work of local artists. Riad 18 has captured one corner of an old riad and transformed it into a literary café prepped to support any art project from painting and printmaking to dance and song. Launched in collaboration with Hicham Bouzid, the former communications director of Librairie Les Insolites in Tangier, there will be bimonthly events organised by Anania, an organisation created by Tawfiq Izeddiou, the founder of the dance festival of Marrakech.

Sydney Bucking the trend that has seen many Sydney galleries shut-up shop and go virtual, Michelle Paterson opened her M Contemporary Gallery in the commercial art haven of Woollahra in August this year. The South-African born collector has spent the past 16 years feeling out the art market in Asia; her gallery focuses on selling ‘Work that is fresh, colourful, tactile, and not too political’. M Contemporary also runs education programs and events in order to incite cross-cultural dialogue and ‘create new collectors’. The fact that the first exhibition – a solo show by South African artist Lyndi Sales – was opened by Sydney Contemporary art fair director, Barry Keldoulis, suggests that M Contemporary is on the right track to make it in Sydney.

Ed Ruscha, Rustic Pines, 1967. Gunpowder on paper, Dominique Lévy Gallery

Abraham Cruzvillegas, Generous and Needy, 2012/13, Courtesy of the artist and Galerie Chantal Crousel

James Nares, Globe, Paul Kasmin Gallery

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f the 20th century was the era of art movements, the 21st is the era of art fairs. Although the concept was born long before the turn of the millennium, it is this past decade in which shows such as Frieze and Art Basel have dominated the calendars of

Marina Abramovic, Places of Power, The Garden of Maitreya, 2013. Photography by Marco Anelli. Image courtesy the artist and Luciana Brito Galeria

Grosse Fatigue, Video © Camille Henrot, Courtesy the artist, Silex Films and kamel mennour, Paris


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artists, dealers, buyers and tag-alongs alike. The main difference between the original Art Basel and it’s sexier younger sister in Miami is not the art but the atmosphere. Beach clubs, pop-up nightclubs and neon cocktails not only set the tone for Art Basel

Miami Beach but also for the countless satellite fairs and local museum shows which have developed due to the main festival’s success. From graffiti exhibitions in the city’s Wynwood district, to the re-launch of the Perez Art Museum Miami (designed by

Marc Camille Chaimowicz, Desk... On Decline, 1981, Andrew Kreps Gallery

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words: rich thornton

Barnaby Furnas, Genesis, 2013, Acrylic on linen, Victoria Miro Gallery

a hop, skip and jump through art basel miami beach

Herzog and de Meuron), this year it was difficult to concentrate on the actual galleries - despite big-name offerings like Linder at Blum and Poe and Yayoi Kusama at Victoria Miro. The art at Miami was also in danger of being over shadowed by the music as the entertainment industry

piled in for the party. Nicolas Jaar, Mark Ronson, Boy George, Lenny Kravitz and Lady Gaga all performed at various exclusive parties over the long weekend - a chance for people to engage their ears and give their eyes a rest from all the pop art, pool glare and brand collaborations.


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contemporary istanbul: review

words: jennifer hattam

Yaşam Şaşmazer, Taming the Darkness, 2013, mixed media on wall wooden sculpture, Berlin Art Projects

Contemporary Istanbul is committed to staying in touch with its roots, despite going more global this year

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op-cultureinfluenced art, large-scale portraiture, hyper-realistic photography, city scenes, and a sculpture revival were some of the noticeable trends among the 3,000 works on display at this November’s installment of Contemporary Istanbul. Scottish artist David Mach’s work Tiger, a near-life-sized sculpture made of wire coat hangers, was one of the annual art fair’s big sellers, fetching 250,000 euros, while Turkish artist Yaşam Şaşmazer’s cartoonish, creepily intense wooden figures - one leading a monster by a chain and the other cowering from a swarm of painted birds drew a lot of attention from visitors.

A total of 72,000 people passed through the halls of Contemporary Istanbul

A total of 72,000 people passed through the halls of Contemporary Istanbul, now in its 8th edition, and snapped up 67% of all the works exhibited by 95 galleries from 22 countries. Although organizers are proud of the increasingly global character of the fair, they say they remain committed to showcasing a high percentage of Turkish galleries in order to bring more exposure to the country’s art scene. Artists both Turkish and foreign derived inspiration from Istanbul itself. French photographer Jean-François Rauzier’s ultra-vivid Yali Vedute, with its packed rows of colourful waterfront mansions, contrasted sharply with Turkish artist Ahmet Doğu İpek’s watercolour Building Porn X, with a similarly dense repetition of dark, characterless skyscrapers. A number of Turkish artists tried to address the mass protests that rocked the country this summer, but with so little time passed since those events, these topical works were lacking in comment or nuance. Contemporary Istanbul is the city’s oldest and

Mark Hachem, Les Parfums de Revolte, 2013, digital prints on transparent film burnt and enclosed in plexiglas boxes, Hayat Gallery

Kerem Ozan Bayraktar, A Horse, A Duck and A Goose, 2013, computer generated image c print, Pg Art Gallery

Jean Francois Rauzier, Yali Vedute, 2013, hyperphoto lambda print, Villa del Arte Gallery

Ralf Peters, Baum, 2011, c print on diasec, Kornfeld Gallery

Zhouang Hong Yi, Flower Bed, 2013, rice paper installation on canvas, White Room / Liquid Art System

Volker Marz, Little Ironie, 2013, burned clay and coloured glass, Gallery Tammen


most influential art fair but has attracted a new competitor this year in the form of September’s ArtInternational. But CI organizers plan to keep their spot at the top of the heap with two new parallel events already in the works for next year: one for new media and digital art, building on this year’s inaugural Plug-In section, and one that will focus on the work of emerging galleries.


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abu dhabi art: review

words: anya stafford

Small is Beautiful exhibition

Pascale Martine Thayou, Plastic Bags, Galleria Continua

Abu Dhabi Art mixes headline galleries with new talent from the region and comes into its own


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n the same year that the United Arab Emirates celebrates its 42nd birthday, the fifth Abu Dhabi Art fair showed an impressive ripening. Over 90% of last year’s galleries returned, and this was reflected in solid sales, with new performing arts programmes drawing in yet more crowds. Even a heavy storm, which temporarily

closed the fair, didn’t dampen the buyers’ wallets. Abu Dhabi Art took place last month in the Norman Foster-designed UAE pavilion in the cultural district of Saadiyat Island. Its new neighbour, the Louvre Abu Dhabi, will open its doors on the UAE’s next birthday, 2nd December 2015, to be joined later by the

Guggenheim Abu Dhabi, designed of course by Frank Gehry. Gehry’s work was on sale at the fair this year, with a piece from his Fish Lamps series represented by the Gagosian gallery. Other top names filling the booths of galleries like Cheim & Read, Lisson and Galleria Continua were Louise Bourgeois,

Performance at Durub al Tawaya


Shirazeh Houshiary, Moat, 2013, Pencil, pigments and black aquacryl on canvas and aluminium. Images courtesy the Lisson Gallery


The UAE has an important spoken word heritage and journeying tradition. New performing arts strand Durub al Tawaya built on this, and performance, concerts and public art could be found on Abu Dhabi’s buses, on the beach and even in a dhow. “Cultivating an art market is an important step in the maturity of any cultural hub and Abu Dhabi Art is one of the many driving forces behind this progress” said Rita Aoun-Abdo, Executive Director, Culture Sector, Abu Dhabi Tourism and Culture Authority. As with all art fairs, the diversity was dizzying, and yet Abu Dhabi Art has developed a coherent character of its own to sit among the emerging Gulf centres of expression and consumption.

Nabil Nahas, Betty Boop, Lawrie Shabibi

Yoda Shawesh for EOA.Projects

location, as part of Emirati Expressions: Realised. His near-submerged project from this year’s Venice Biennale is epic in its rerealisation. New kid on the Dubai gallery block Lawrie Shabibi had a packed booth with visitors taking in works from Nabil Nahas and Meekyoung Shin, whose Ghost Series are antiquities remade, incredibly, from soap. Another highlight was Small is Beautiful, an attempt at ‘levelling the playing field’, according to curator Fabrice Bousteau. Artworks no larger than 50cm were presented in a small black space near the ceiling of the pavilion. A very portable Basquiat sat spotlit in the darkness, near Dutch duo Gordijn and Nauta’s dandelion chandelier Fragile Future 3, along with other miniature treasures.

Ed Ruscha, Anish Kapoor, Marina Abramovic and Joan Mitchell. Robert Longo’s large-format charcoal drawing Untitled (Mecca Diptych) sold for a staggering $850,000 to a Middle Eastern buyer. Tina Keng gave audiences a welcome chance to see, or perhaps purchase, Chinese artist Zao Wou-Ki’s May.Sep.89. Artworks from established Middle Eastern artists like Hannah Mallalah and Marwan Sahmarani were there, with Jeffar Khaldi’s new piece, Emergency, being snapped up. On the Emirati side, galleries like Meem and Salwa Zeidan featured Hassan Sharif’s canvas Cars, on tackling Dubai traffic, and Afra Bin Dhaher’s photograph Self Portrait, Prayer Rugs, which layers new narratives onto everyday life. Mohammed Kazem’s second edition of Directions 2005/2013 can be seen until 18th January 2014 in the same

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paul guiragossian: review

words: rebecca sinha


“When I was a child, people around me were talking different languages. I was wondering then: who am I? And in what language should I express myself: in Armenian, Arabic or French? Finally, I understood that my first I should only talk through painting and nothing else.” Paul Guiragossian


odernist painter Paul Guiragossian has experienced exile several times. Born in Jerusalem in 1925 to survivors of the Armenian genocide, he was sent to boarding school at a young age, going on to study art in Italy and France. In 1947 his family left the instability of Palestine for Lebanon, from where he was once again forced to flee by the Civil War, relocating to live in Paris between 1989 and 1991 before returning to Beirut until his death in 1993. So perhaps it was

this turbulent life that lead Guiragossian to depict human relationships with such tenderness. The Human Condition, a retrospective of Guiragossian’s work held at the Beirut Exhibition Center in December, curated by Till Fellrath and Sam Bardaouil of international curatorial platform Art Reoriented, constituted the largest exhibition of his work to date and was organised by the Paul Guiragossian Foundation, presided over by his daughter Manuella. Guiragossian’s instantly recognisable hand combines influences from East and West in colourful canvases that capture the people in the artist’s life, from his family to those living in his neighbourhood. For The Human Condition, Bardouail and Fellrath chose to organise the work not according to

Paul Guiragossian, Self Portrait, 1951, gouache on paper. Owned by Mr. & Mrs. Ramzi Saidi. Courtesy of Paul Guiragossian Foundation

language is painting; and

Paul Guiragossian, Famille, 195859, gouache on paper. Courtesy of Paul Guiragossian Foundation


chronology but by subject matter. Having divided the vast exhibition hall into eight interconnecting galleries, the work was hung according to the distinct but related themes of Self, Family, Woman, Theatre, Faces, Life, Despair and Faith. “I think it was very important to show a wide range of works,” explained Fellrath, “so that you can get an understanding when you come into the space that it’s a range of different explorations of a common theme. There are no works or periods that we needed to leave out because

he was revisiting those themes throughout his life consistently.” It was an approach that encouraged viewers to look beyond the works to the man behind them. “What we advocate is to try to understand any art in particular through the artist, in the end,” Fellath added. “What has this artist created? Why was he doing what he was doing?... For an artist who was such a people person and such a charismatic human being, so this was very much envisaged as a personal show -- you feel a bit the spirit of who he was as an artist.”

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rabee kiwan: review

The human figure is never enough according to painter and canvas-collagist Rabee Kiwan



words: rich thornton

fast becoming a trademark of Kiwan’s creative process. He explains, ‘It takes me five days to plan a new piece, but only a matter of hours to paint it. I don’t use collage to relate unrelated images; I use it as a new way of making a whole’. In October 2013, Mark Hachem gallery held Rhythm A, a solo exhibition for Rabee Kiwan in its space Rabee Kiwan, Untitled, mixed media on canvas

oled-up in his second floor apartment in Beirut’s Achrafieh district, Syrian painter Rabee Kiwan is exploring what it means to be human. A new work spills out over the floor, a patchwork of 16 canvasses tiled together to make a collage of his already collaged work. Patchwork and the painting of a work across different pieces of cloth is

the human condition is his move away from the human figure and towards inanimate objects that are still tragically human. A pile of forgotten shoes, a scatter of gas masks, a blown-out bus and silhouetted handcuffs give a taste of types of icons the artist uses to express his sentiment. The fact that these images are painted onto

Rabee Kiwan, Untitled, mixed media on canvas

in Downtown Beirut – it also has galleries in Paris and New York. After its popularity at the Beirut Art Fair in September 2013, Mark Hachem is devoting more and more space to emerging Syrian art, with a solo show for Nizar Sabour being held directly after Kiwan’s in November 2013. What is interesting about Kiwan’s artistic exploration of

Rabee Kiwan, Untitled, mixed media on canvas

“It takes me five days to plan a new piece, but only a matter of hours to paint it”

Rab-L2149, Rabee Kiwan, Tank, mixed media on canvas

The Fractured Canvas

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different canvases and then pasted together to encourage the viewer to think from multiple perspectives. They somehow suggest that the individual experience of hope or suffering is never the same, yet ironically can still be encapsulated and represented through universally resonant objects. Kiwan recently travelled to Bologna to take part

in a live painting project by CrAck Italy. The artist explains, ‘A video of a moving human face was projected onto a canvas and I had to paint over it, while loud music played. It was a thrilling experience. The energy was exciting and it was a totally different atmosphere to how I normally work – I loved it.’


raqib shaw: review

words: india stoughton

Shaw has made art history by being the first artist to exhibit simultaneously at Pace’s three West 25th Street galleries in New York this winter, showcasing ten paintings, three sculptures and five drawings, based on John Milton’s seminal epic English poem Paradise Lost. Shaw’s fantastical works, which are painstakingly executed using porcupine quills, combine the delicacy of Indian miniatures with a monumental size and scope that dwarfs the viewer. His paintings contrast scenes of violence, war and destruction with erotic tableaux featuring sublime creatures, part human and part animal, which inhabit a world populated by the ruins of Western

classical architecture. Elaborate decorative motifs, including flowers in riotous bloom and the addition of glitter, enamel and an abundance of precious stones give his work a rich texture and an over-thetop appeal that hovers on the edge of kitsch. The first gallery houses three painted bronze sculptures. One of them, entitled Moon Howlers, was inspired by Shaw’s beloved bonsai trees. This mesmerizing, eightfoot-high work captures tiny human figures with animal heads clutching the branches of the magnified tree with its twisted trunk and diminutive branches.

Installation image from Raqib Shaw Paradise Lost, 2013. Image courtesy Pace Gallery

Pace Gallery is dedicating three of its four New York exhibition spaces to Raqib Shaw’s intensely fantastical paintings

Raqib Shaw, Garden of Earthly Delights Synopsis, 20102012, acrylic, enamel, glitter and rhinestones on paper. Image courtesy Pace Gallery

Raqib Shaw, Arrival of the Ram King, Paradise Lost II, 2011 2013, Oil, Acrylic, Enamel, Glitter and Rhinestones on, Birch wood. Image courtesy Pace Gallery

orn in Calcutta in 1974 and raised in Kashmir, Raqib Shaw was forced to flee to Britain in 1998 due to on-going violence. The artist has created his own eccentric Himalayan paradise in London in the most unlikely of locations — an old sausage factory. Rooms filled with bonsai trees, flowers and shrubs attract butterflies and bees, an indoor waterfall fills the studio with the sound of running water and the former abattoir has been converted into a blood-spattered bathroom. A conversion of such extremes perfectly suits the artist’s simultaneous attraction to the perverse and the divine.

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Raqib Shaw, The Disambiguation Of The Myth Of The Last Shinobi, 20112012. oil, acrylic, enamel, glitter and rhinestones on Birch wood. Image courtesy Pace Gallery

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Each figure looks upwards, seemingly engaged in a frenzied howl towards the unseen moon, while sprays of cherry blossom surround them in an ethereal cloud. A second gallery is dedicated to paintings and drawings, among them the incredible Arrival of the Ram King - Paradise Lost II, in which a dusky sky, streaked with rich purple, orange and red, overlooks a breathtakingly detailed scene of chaos, in which centaur-like creatures with the bodies of zebra caper and prance amid crumbling masonry. In the final gallery Shaw’s enormous Paradise Lost, started in 2001 and

finished just before this exhibition opened, is on display. The work consists of 12 panels, each 10 feet high and 60 feet long, in which weird and wonderful creatures wander through fairy tale landscapes filled with verdant green plants and delicate blossom. All Shaw’s works, and this one most of all, take viewers on a journey between the horrifying and the heavenly, plunging them vividly into the artist’s magical world.

Raqib Shaw, Paradise Lost, is at Pace Gallery on West 25th Street, New York, until 11th January 2014.


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article title


The Brilliant Issue ∙ 10 top Tech GADGETS ∙ Record Breaking Diamonds ∙ Sparkling Winter Jewellery ∙ Serge Lutens ∙ Stargazing Hotspots ∙ Accessories Focus ∙ Julio Le Parc ∙ Michael Anastassiades


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collector profile: Words: öner kocabeyoğlu


words: jennifer hattam

Sarah Morris, Total Lunar Eclipse [Rio], 2012, 16 colour screen print with gloss finish

Murat Pulat, Light Recording, oil on canvas, 2013

Selim Turan abstract composition, mixed media, oil on canvas

Selim Turan, Untitled, oil on presstual

Collector Profile: oner Kocabeyoglu

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“A collector has to buy and invest first in the artists of his country,you can’t wait for someone from abroad to do it”


he first piece of art that ever caught textile magnate Öner Kocabeyoğlu’s eye wasn’t a famous work or even a particularly attentiongrabbing one. Instead, it was a small abstract canvas by Selim Turan, a Turkish painter born in 1915 whose work was little recognised even in his own country. Impressed with the art on display at a friend’s home, Kocabeyoğlu attended his first auction in 2001, where he was drawn to the colours and shapes in the untitled oil

by Turan. After purchasing the piece, Kocabeyoğlu, whose company Papko manufacturers clothing in Turkey for the international apparel brand Zara, dedicated himself to learning more about the artist, and discovered a whole new world. Turan, it turns out, was a member of the École de Paris, a group of non-French artists living and working in the French capital from roughly the 1930s up until the 1950s. “When Turkish artists first went to Paris, they went with

nothing,” Kocabeyoğlu says. “There were no museums here then, and they went to this city full of art. This period became the backbone of Turkish modern art.” Working without an adviser — “It’s too cold for me to have someone say, ‘You have to buy this,’ when you don’t believe in it,” he says — Kocabeyoğlu began collecting paintings by other Turkish members of the Paris School such as Hakkı Anlı and Nejad Melih Devrim. Recently he started adding the works of contemporary

and international artists including stars such as Andreas Gursky and Julian Schnabel to his collection. He now owns more than 1,000 works that have an estimated value of $11 million. But collecting and promoting the work of Turkish artists still remains his primary passion. “A collector has to buy and invest first in the artists of his country,” Kocabeyoğlu says. “You can’t wait for someone from abroad to do it.”

A trip to BRAFA is like visiting the most fabulous decorative arts museum filled with collectible pieces from around the world - except that you can buy things

brafa: preview

words: kasia maciejowska

Le Miroir Invisible, René Magritte, gouache on paper, 1942, at Harold T´Kint De Roodenbeke Gallery


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Rocaille console in carved gilt wood, Sarrancolin marble, circa 1745, at Steinitz Gallery


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Main Ray, Man Ray, Painted bronze and billiard ball mounted on a base, at Galerie Seghers



ow in its fiftyninth year, BRAFA is giving itself a makeover. Previously the Brussels Fine Arts and Antiques Fair, and before that the Belgian Antiques Fair, BRAFA now stands for the Brussels Art Fair, a reflection of the cache that is now placed on being an “art fair”. Known especially

for its outstanding tribal artworks from around the world, this stately fair mixes ancient, modern and contemporary art Being in Belgium, close to Brussels and Antwerp, European centres for antiques and decorative arts dealerships, BRAFA is inherently conservative and traditional in ambience. In many ways it remains so, with galleries that specialise in Oriental Art, Art Nouveau and Old Masters for example, and partnerships with institutions like this year’s

guest of honour, the Royal Museum of Central Africa, a colonialist collection that remains remarkably unreconstructed. On the other hand, it feels refreshing in today’s saturated art fairs market to see pieces that are classics and, in some cases, pleasingly unfashionable. This year’s 131 exhibitors come from Paris, Vienna, Zürich and of course Brussels; a handful hail from further afield, from places like Canada, the USA and Japan. New arrivals include the Carpenters Workshop Gallery from London, Cité de la Céramique from Sèvres, Robertaebasta from Milan, and Lux Art Consulting from Luxembourg. At the more established end of the scale, the family run grand antiques house Costermans will celebrate its 175th anniversary during the fair. While the Royal Museum of Central Africa closes in order to modernise it will be showing some of its incredible tribal masks,

voodoo sculptures, and animal and insect specimens in a special section at the fair. This is particularly worth seeing, although of course these objects won’t be for sale. Some highlights you can take home include Three Black Birds by Georges Braques, Yellow Flower by Fernand Léger, Clarice by Niki de St Phalle, Main Ray by Man Ray, T.M., 1958 by Victor Vasarely, and Le Miroir Invisible by René Magritte. There are also exquisite crafted pieces like Italian alabaster vases from the 19th century and jade snuff bottles from 18thcentury China. Curios from Ancient Egypt and Imperial Rome can be found, as can cartoons and designs from the late 20th century.

BRAFA takes place at Tour & Taxis in Brussels from 25th January until 2nd February 2014.

Art Retreat Passion

- Magnus Winter/Bransch

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