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October 06, 2014
By Mark Ellwood | Art
Photo courtesy of Naomi Fisher

This decade-old contemporary space was cofounded by artists Hernan Bas and Naomi Fisher—“We liked how our names together sounded, like a fishing tournament,” Fisher says. BFI programs edgy and experimental work, whether visual, video or performance art. Spend 15 minutes inside the space to see whatever exhibition has taken over the gallery, then allow an afternoon to join a Weird Miami tour, Bas Fisher’s signature series, in which an artist is given free rein to take visitors on a mystery tour through the city, helping them discover the forgotten, hidden or overlooked places and things that define Miami. At 100 NE 11th St.; basfisherinvitational.com.

October 06, 2014
By Josh Dean | Art
Photo courtesy of Dana Levy

Founded in 2001, Artists in Residence in Everglades, or AIRIE, is one of the country’s most unusual programs. Fellows, such as New York–based visual artist Dana Levy (see her on-site installation, Emerging from the Swamp, above), spend a month alone in a cabin deep in the Everglades, with air-conditioning­, spotty Internet, a bike, a kayak and free rein of the 1.5 million­–acre park. So far, 110 fellows—artists but also writers, musicians and even dancers—have been selected to live and work among the alligators and panthers and inva­sive pythons. The lonely, spartan experience can occasionally be shocking. One artist from Hollywood, Florida, packed up her things after the first day and began to drive away, only to have a change of heart and turn around. “The next day,” says Deborah Mitchell, AIRIE’s executive director, “she had this pivotal experience that made her want to stay.” airie.org.

October 03, 2014
By Marnie Hanel | Art
Leif Parsons

A two-year scuffle between the Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) and the city of North Miami will come to a close in November when part of MOCA will become the Institute of Contemporary Art and move to an interim facility in the Design District. The rest of MOCA will stay in North Miami. It remains to be seen which artworks will go to which institution.

October 01, 2014
By Mark Ellwood | Art
Photo courtesy of Steven Brooke Studios

This is the sumptuous Coconut Grove villa of industrialist James Deering, a Golden Age Elton John with a magpie’s instinct for collecting.

For the first 20 minutes, visitors should wander the Hearst Castle–like interiors, a mash-up of European antiques and fixtures. Then, in the next 25 minutes, dawdle in the gardens, now often host to contemporary art exhibitions. Don’t miss the mermaid-adorned waterfront barge that sits in front, designed by Sterling Calder, father of mobile designer Alexander. “When it was done, Deering complained to Calder that the female figures were too well endowed,” says museum executive director Joel Hoffman, “and requested they be rendered more modest.” At 3251 S. Miami Ave.; vizcaya.org.

September 23, 2014
By Susan Michals | Art
MARY CORSE Untitled (Black and White with Blue Outer Bands, Beveled), 2014 glass microspheres in acrylic on canvas 84 x 84 inches 213.4 x 213.4 cm Courtesy the artist and Lehmann Maupin, New York and Hong Kong

Frieze London, the grande dame of all art fairs, returns to the city’s Regents Park to showcase another annual installment dedicated to contemporary and living artists (friezelondon.com). From October 15 to 18, visitors (over 60,000 people are expected) can take in works from 162 participating galleries from around the world. With plenty to see, hear and learn, here’s what you cannot miss. 

Brand-new to the fair this year is Live, a section devoted entirely to performance-based installations, including works specifically conceived for Frieze and the restaging of important historical pieces. Works by Robert Breer, Franz Erhard Walther, Tamara Henderson, Adam Linder, Shanzhai Biennial and United Brothers will all be on view.

Head to Lehmann Maupin Gallery’s stall for a curated selection of multimedia works by artists like Lee Bul, Alex Prager, Tracey Emin, Teresita Fernández and others, who all share an interest in the perception of constructed environments—both physical and psychological.

Also of note is the presentation from New York’s Lower East Side gallery Canada, which showcases works by artists such as Michael Williams and Xylor Jane. Keep an eye out for pieces by the late artist David Askevold, once dubbed by fellow artist Mike Kelley as the “difficult conceptualist.” Askevold’s artistic endeavors, such as his Psychedelic Buffalo 3, defy explanation and hark back to trippy days gone by; they should not be skipped.

For art of slightly older provenance (all works on view were made before 2000), check out Frieze Masters (friezemasters.com), just a 15-minute walk away. Pay special attention to the solo artist presentations from the fair's impressive list of 120 galleries from October 15 to 19.

Should you need a break from the throngs, but not from quality art, head to London’s oldest French restaurant, L’Escargot (48 Greek St.; 44-20/7439-7474; lescargotrestaurant.co.uk). Only 14 minutes away by Tube, the old standby has just launched its Upstairs Club, with six kaleidoscopically redecorated rooms full of comfort and calm. Thanks to its collection of works by Salvador Dalí, Matisse, Laura Knight, Peter Blake and Grayson Perry, among others, you’ll still feel part of the artistically inclined fanfare.

September 17, 2014
By Susan Michals | Art
Courtesy of Jessie Askinazi

Michael Lindsay-Hogg is the epitome of the Renaissance man. He is a painter, writer, director and an unmitigated bon vivant, of sorts. He’s directed videos for The Rolling Stones and The Beatles, as well as the acclaimed television series Brideshead Revisited. (He’s also the purported son of Orson Welles.)

He has dubbed his work as a painter, which he has now turned to full-time, as “career number five,” and his latest creations can be seen in the brand new exhibition “Casanova’s Dream,” on display at The Salon at Automatic Sweat in Los Angeles through October 10.

Lindsay-Hogg’s painting is an amalgamation of folk-art-like expressionism suffused with wit and humor, a la poet Dorothy Parker or filmmaker Preston Sturges. Like all of his work, the artist does not limit himself to mere canvas; he works on cardboard, paper, postcards…anything he feels will enhance his vision.

“I guess painting is what I like doing best now,” mused the artist at his opening last Saturday evening. “Although, in one way, it’s only marks and colors on a surface, for me there’s a link to writing, directing, in movies and theater. There is an ambiguous relationship the people in the paintings have with each other, with the outcome—often in doubt, or left hanging—[and] with each other or with the viewer.”

What is beyond clear, however, is that his artwork deserves to be seen. 2656 S. La Cienega Blvd.; 310-839-3100; automaticsweat.com.

September 10, 2014
By Robert Khederian | Art
Walter Steiger. “Unicorn Tayss,” Spring 2013. Courtesy of Walter Steiger. Photo: Jay Zukerkorn

Every September, fashion capitals all over the world light up with designers’ latest collections for spring—but the catwalk isn’t the only source for sartorial entertainment. This month, three cities play host to exhibitions that investigate our relationship to style and fashion’s role in history.

“Hollywood Glamour: Fashion and Jewelry from the Silver Screen”: Joan Crawford, Greta Garbo, Mae West—these names are synonymous with the golden age of Hollywood, when satin-clad actresses of the 1930s and ’40s wore exquisite gowns accessorized with equally dramatic jewels. On display at Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts is an indulgent array of creations by the likes of Adrian, Travis Banton and Chanel, just to name a few. Taken from film sets, or from the personal collections of their leading ladies, the curated collection demonstrates how the era’s signature glamour was determined as much by what the stars wore offscreen as what they wore on camera. Through March 8, 2015; 465 Huntington Ave.; 617-267-9300; mfa.org.

“Killer Heels: The Art of the High-Heeled Shoe”: With a history that stretches back nearly four centuries, the high-heel has undergone transformations of form and cultural relevance. From iconic styles by fashion favorites like Manolo Blahnik to architectural creations by Zaha Hadid, the display at The Brooklyn Museum—which includes six specially commissioned short films—proves one thing: A shoe is never merely an accessory. Through February 15, 2015; 200 Eastern Pkwy.; 718-638-5000; brooklynmuseum.org.

Fashion Film Festival Milano: Debuting September 14 during Milan Fashion Week at the Piccolo Teatro Grassi Milano, the inaugural festival draws on the growing popularity of fashion films, from Prêt-à-Porter to The Devil Wears Prada. In addition to showcasing films created in collaboration with the world’s top brands—including Gucci, Louis Vuitton and Cartier—the Festival hosts a competition for new talent, providing a forum for young directors and producers to share their work with designers, brands, artists and the fashion-hungry public. September 14–15; Via Rovello, 2; 39-848-800-304; fffmilano.com.

July 24, 2014
By Sasha Levine | Art

Masayoshi Sukita. © Sukita / The David Bowie Archive 2012.

After a successful run in both London and Toronto, the much-acclaimed exhibit “David Bowie Is” is set to hit Chicago’s Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA) this September for the traveling showcase’s sole stop in the United States.

First realized at the Victoria and Albert Museum in March 2013, the show makes its American debut with a chronological perspective on the icon’s evolution, focusing on his creative processes—beginning with his formative years as David Robert Jones in post–World War II London—and his collaborative efforts with other artists and designers. The exhibit as a whole explores how Bowie, as both a pioneering musician and persona, influenced and was influenced by simultaneous movements in the arts.

“His constant reinvention and strategic image management help us understand the popular culture of today,” explains Michael Darling, the museum’s James W. Alsdorf chief curator. “We also feel it is important to look outside the realm of the visual arts for clues to what is important in contemporary culture, and David Bowie’s career is a compelling analogue to what has been happening in other creative fields over the past 40 years.”

More than 300 items will be on display as part of the immersive experience, including costumes, photography, album artwork, handwritten lyrics, original fashions and set designs culled from Bowie’s decades-long career. Some highlights include his Freddie Burretti–designed Ziggy Stardust bodysuits (1972); clips from films and live performances, including his appearance on Saturday Night Live (1979); and previously unseen storyboards and tour footage. Tickets go on sale July 31; exhibit runs September 23 through January 4, 2015; 220 E. Chicago Ave.; 312-280-2660; mcachicago.org.

July 22, 2014
By Robert Khederian | Art, Arts + Culture

Bottega Veneta Photographs Culture in Shanghai
Photo courtesy of Bottega Veneta

Bottega Veneta may be best known for its sumptuous woven leather goods, but the Italian label is quickly establishing itself among art connoisseurs. Five art exhibitions have already been produced by the brand out of the second-floor gallery space of its Yifeng Galleria boutique in Shanghai, and earlier this summer it unveiled its sixth: A collection of photography by seven artists entitled “Pleasures of the Imagination.”

“I’m delighted with the latest exhibition and hope our clients find it inspiring,” says Bottega Veneta creative director Tomas Maier. “Photography is one of my passions, so I’m particularly pleased with how well these exhibitions have been received by everyone who has visited.”

Following shows that have examined the art of the portrait, objects of everyday life and China’s heritage, “Pleasures of the Imagination” investigates how the seven participating artists interpret modern Chinese life and culture. And while Bottega Veneta ultimately hopes to foster the next generation of artists, it also seems to be strategically differentiating itself from its contemporaries. The shopping experience offered in Shanghai, coupled with a chance to peruse a culturally relevant compilation of esteemed local talent, demonstrates the brand’s understanding of a discerning customer that appreciates quality, craftsmanship and creativity in art as well as fashion.

“Our clients have high expectations and our goal is not to just meet those expectations, but to surpass them,” says president and CEO Marco Bizzarri. “I think we have managed to give them something they truly do not get anywhere else, but most importantly, something they appreciate on a personal level.”

While we’re hoping plans for stateside shows are in the works, it’s hard not to be excited by this thoughtfully holistic interpretation of luxury shopping. Through September; 86-21/5306-7650; bottegaveneta.com.

June 30, 2014
By Julian Sancton | Art

Philip Johnson's Glass House Transformed
©Richard Barnes

Using fog as her medium, 81-year-old Japanese artist Fujiko Nakaya transfigures spaces without touching them. For her installation Veil (on view now through November 30), she has found her most symbolic setting yet: Philip Johnson’s Glass House. Nakaya is shrouding the New Canaan, Connecticut, landmark, which celebrates its 65th anniversary, in a dense mist once an hour, thanks to 600 nozzles hidden in the grass. She complements the transparent walls with their exact architectural opposite: opaque air. From the inside, invisible divisions take form. From the outside, the house seems to disappear in a cloud. The effect becomes all the more mysterious as the fog dissipates and the house emerges as if out of a fairy tale. At 199 Elm St.; theglasshouse.org.

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