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October 02, 2012
By Rory Tolan | Art

Artist Luc Tuymans Marks David Zwirner Gallery’s London Debut
Courtesy David Zwirner New York/London

Luc Tuymans, whose paintings are often so pale and sear as to resemble scrimshaw, treats himself to a gambol across the color spectrum in his latest series of canvases, an enthralling collection called Allo!, which debuts this week at the new London location of David Zwirner Gallery.

Tuymans’s blurred, dreamlike lines—the inexact, evasive contours that have brought widespread acclaim to the way he deals with memory and trauma—remain in full, disorienting effect. So does the Belgian artist’s hall-of-mirrors way of distancing himself from his subject. Although he based the series on The Moon and Sixpence, a novel by W. Somerset Maugham concerning a stockbroker who flees his bourgeois life to become a Gauguin-esque artist in Tahiti, Tuymans derived each painting from photographs he took of film stills from the book’s 1942 cinematic adaptation. The result is a facsimile of a facsimile of a facsimile of a facsimile, allowing him to focus less on the artist in this particular novel and more on the ways the culture, in all its sundry media, talks about artists in general.

Allo! is noteworthy for an additional reason. David Zwirner introduced Tuymans to the United States in 1994, giving him his first solo show there and, soon after, solidifying his place in the pantheon of contemporary painters. Since this is the inaugural exhibit at the David Zwirner London space, it seems appropriate that Tuymans, in turn, should introduce Zwirner to Europe. October 4 through November 17; 24 Grafton St.; 44-20/3538-3165; davidzwirner.com.

October 01, 2012
By Erin Schumaker | Art

The Kennedys by Mark Shaw
Mark Shaw, Jackie Kennedy in Ravello, Italy, 1959, © 2012 Mark Shaw / mptvimages.com

The MILA Kunstgalerie in Berlin opened its doors for the first time on September 6 with an exhibit celebrating famed Vogue fashion photographer Mark Shaw called “The Kennedys.” Considered by fashion historians to be the first modern fashion photographer, Shaw breathed life into everyone and everything he captured on film. His iconic photos of celebrities like Pablo Picasso, Elizabeth Taylor, Grace Kelly and (of course) the Kennedys graced the covers of Life magazine dozens of times.

The photographer had unprecedented access to JFK, allowing him to document the president and his family in an intimate way that produced photos both glamorous and candid. “Mark Shaw was the master of casual glamour,” says Daniele Mancinetti, the gallery’s creative director. “Prior to [him], fashion photography was stiff and contrived. But Shaw’s photographs, even when posed, have a live quality not previously seen.”

The images in the gallery are hung in order, starting with the most private moments and ending with more official photos—a journey through the Kennedys’ lives through Shaw’s eyes. Among Mancinetti’s favorites is a photo that illustrates a mixture of the public and private—a shot of Jackie Kennedy, wearing a bright red dress while on holiday in Ravello, off the Amalfi Coast, and holding Shaw’s camera. “The color combination of the dress and the sea is definitely a winner,” he says. “The pose is so natural and the composition is just perfect.” Through October 6; Linienstrasse 154; 49-30/4920-6346; milakunst.com.

September 19, 2012
By Susan Michals | Art

An Ed Ruscha Exhibit at LACMA
© 2012 Ed Ruscha IV.
All rights reserved. Photo © 2012 Museum Associates/LACMA

Fall 2012 is turning out to be a banner season for the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA). As part of its 2012 Art + Film Gala (October 27), the museum is honoring American artist Ed Ruscha and the late film director Stanley Kubrick. 

“Ed Ruscha: Standard”—a new exhibition showcasing 300 works from the museum’s collection—debuts on September 22 (it continues through January 21). Ruscha, a seminal influence in graphic design, film and architecture, utilized all three disciplines in his depictions of urban history. “Ed Ruscha is a major figure linking the art world and the film industry,” says LACMA curator Britt Salvesen. “Not only does he depict the iconic Hollywood sign in his art, he has made films himself and acknowledges the impact of certain film genres—such as noir—on his sensibility. Ruscha sums it up best with a phrase he has used in several works of art: ‘Hollywood is a verb.’ ”

Kubrick gets his time in the L.A. sun on November 1, when the first retrospective of his work in the context of an art museum will go on view at LACMA. As for the gala itself, expect organizers to pull out all the stops. Leonardo DiCaprio and Eva Chow will cochair the event for the second year running, and a sea of celebrities (including musical guest Florence and the Machine) and L.A. art folk will be out and about in their black-tie best. Gala tickets, from $5,000; tables, from $50,000; call 323-857-6160 or email Nicole Greene at ngreene@lacma.org5909 Wilshire Blvd.; 323-857-6151; lacma.org

September 13, 2012
By Adam H. Graham | Art

Tate Tanks
Courtesy of Tate Photography

The term “performance art” has a checkered past, causing many—even among the most tolerant of contemporary art audiences—to wince. But anyone who witnessed the edgy greatness of Marina Abramoviç’s MoMA show in New York or the thrilling high energy of Tino Sehgal—whose piece, This Variation, was arguably the highlight of the dOCUMENTA (13) art fair—knows that performance art is finally having its moment.

Fittingly, the genre has been given a starkly gorgeous new permanent home in London at the Tate Tanks, which opened in July during the Olympic tumult. The first space ever completely devoted to performance and live art is a shadowy warren of vaulted concrete galleries and quasi-industrial chambers in the gorgeously redesigned basement (formerly water tanks) of the Tate Modern. Coincidentally, it’s just downstairs from Sehgal’s ongoing piece, These Associations, in the main Turbine Hall.

The Tanks three exhibition spaces were redesigned by Swiss architects Herzog & de Meuron and are marked by columns of concrete that beam down like massive shafts of light, a nod to the building’s history as the Bankside Power Station. They also mark the first phase of the museum’s ongoing expansion, which will eventually include a new building (also designed by Herzog & de Meuron) that promises to double the size of the Tate’s already vast footprint.

Meanwhile, the Tanks is hosting Art in Action, a jam-packed 15-week festival that celebrates performance, film and site-specific installations through October 28. Highlights include works by late experimental filmmaker Jeff Keen (September 18 to 23); choreographer Boris Charmatz presenting Flip Book, an ode to Merce Cunningham (September 28 and 29); and an ongoing exhibition by interdisciplinary Korean artist Sung Hwan Kim (through October 28). Bankside; 44-20/7887-8888; tate.org.uk.

September 12, 2012
By Erin Schumaker | Art

A Dennis Hopper Photo Exhibit in Berlin
© The Dennis Hopper Trust, Courtesy of The Dennis Hopper Trust

Two years after Dennis Hopper’s death, a carefully curated selection of photographs shot by the iconic actor during the 1960s and '70s will be exhibited in Europe for the first time. “Dennis Hopper—The Lost Album”—showing at Martin-Gropius-Bau exhibition hall in Berlin (September 20 through December 17)—was first installed at the Fort Worth Art Center Museum in 1970. It comprises more than 400 vintage photographs taken by Hopper between 1961 and 1976.

Though Hopper, who rose to fame in the 1960s, is perhaps best known for his role as Billy, a freewheeling motorcycle rider in the 1969 counterculture film Easy Rider, he was also an influential player in the Los Angeles art scene and one of the first collectors of Andy Warhol. After his first wife (actress Brooke Hayward) gave Hopper a camera as a gift, he began photographing everything and everyone around him. An intimate portrait of Paul Newman in 1964 Malibu (pictured here); shots of Andy Warhol lounging on a couch in the Factory; and more politically motivated frames—street life in Harlem, bullfights in Tijuana, Martin Luther King Jr.’s historic march across Alabama from Selma to Montgomery—show Hopper’s knack for capturing even the most well-known figures in unguarded moments. 7 Niederkirchnerstraße; 49-30/254-860; berlinerfestspiele.de.

September 05, 2012
By Rory Tolan | Art

The Biennale des Antiquaires in Paris
Drawn by Karl Lagerfeld, 2012 / Courtesy of the Syndicat National Des Antiquaires

The exit of every art museum is a treasure trove of trash, where the connoisseur can take away Taschen hardbacks, plastic replicas and other cheap tchotchkes that will be fodder less for his memory than for the dust on his coffee table. But from September 14 to 23, the Grand Palais in Paris will host an entirely different sort of museum, whose $50 billion worth of art is stickered with price tags. The Biennale des Antiquaires, now celebrating its 26th biennial installment and its 50th anniversary, recalls Portobello Road less than it does the pleasure dome of Kubla Khan. It is a place where the curators of the Louvre and the Tate can—and do—max out expense accounts within minutes.

On display are some 8,000 paintings, sculptures, jewels, suits of armor, tapestries, illuminated manuscripts and other riches spanning several millennia and six continents. Warhol’s Liz #1 is for the taking, as is Cézanne’s Tasse, verre et fruits, II. So is an ornate bureau from André-Charles Boulle, legendary cabinetmaker to King Louis XIV, as well as a Dumas manuscript from the private collection of Czar Nicholas I. (It would not be surprising if the Golden Fleece was also up for grabs.)

With more than 120 exhibitors, this is the largest Biennale to date, not least because the Grand Palais has opened its long-forgotten wing, the Salon d’Honneur, for the first time since 1940. Karl Lagerfeld, creative director of Chanel, has dressed the scene, transforming the Grand Palais into a Belle Epoque Champs- Elysées, with 19th-century arcades, reproductions of the Arc de Triomphe and the Place de la Concorde and even an antique hot-air balloon floating beneath the building’s great glass dome. (He also designed the official poster, pictured above.) All that glitters may not be gold, but one can probably find it under this roof. Keep your shades on. 1 Avenue Géneral Eisenhower; sna-france.com.

August 28, 2012
By Erin Schumaker | Art

Zaha Hadid Exhibits Design Prowess in Madrid
Jacopo Spilimbergo

Designer and architect Zaha Hadid is known for making waves, sometimes quite literally. After years as a controversial figure in the architecture world, Hadid became the first woman to win the Pritzker Architecture Prize in 2004. More recent accomplishments include designing the Maxxi museum in Rome and the aquatics center for this summer’s Olympic games in London. The 61-year-old’s fluid designs continue to challenge convention, and “Zaha Hadid. Beyond Boundaries, Art and Design” at Ivorypress Space in Madrid (opening September 4) showcases a wide sampling of the artist’s work.

Dawings, paintings, reliefs, installations and furniture design comprise the collection. From her London studio, for example, Hadid’s Liquid Glacial table (shown above) is an ethereal structure of rippled glass that seems to pour from top to legs in one fluid motion. “What is so inspiring and intriguing about the astounding output of Zaha Hadid is the imaginative, inventive and unquenchable expression of curiosity and creativity,” says exhibition curator Kenny Schachter. “Hadid defies pigeonholing in a world increasingly defined by uniformity.” September 4 through November 3; 48–46 C/Comandante Zorita; 34-91/449-0961; ivorypress.com.

August 22, 2012
By Erin Schumaker | Art

Le Royal Monceau’s Dreamlike Art Exhibit
Courtesy Le Royal Monceau, Raffles Paris

Art has been a cornerstone of Le Royal Monceau’s identity since the iconic 84-year-old Parisian hotel reopened in 2010 on the heels of a redesign by French architect and designer Philippe Starck. In addition to a dedicated art concierge (the first in Paris) and an art bookstore, the hotel has its own gallery, Art District, where the work of French photographer Jean-François Rauzier is on view in the exhibit “Hyper Versailles” through September 2.

Rauzier works in a self-invented style he calls “hyperphoto,” where he creates visual images from hundreds of still shots taken with a telephoto lens, then assembles the images on his computer. “Hyperphotos are like a long-forgotten dream come to life,” he says. “The images are assembled numerically, to create an image so detailed and fascinating yet at the same time massive in scale and never ending—just like a dream.”

Among the works on display at Le Royal Monceau is Galerie des Affaires Etrangères (pictured above), a 2011 piece from Rauzier’s “Versailles” series and a whimsical creation made up of photographs taken in the Gallery of the Hotel of Foreign Affairs and the Navy, the very room where the 1783 Treaty of Versailles was negotiated, bringing about the end of the American War of Independence. Through September 2; rooms, from $960; 37 Hoche Ave.; 33-1/4299-8800; leroyalmonceau.com.

August 15, 2012
By Ingrid Skjong | Art

A Madeline Weinrib Exhibit in the Hamptons
Madeline Weinrib

Textile and carpet designer Madeline Weinrib, known for her way with color and pattern, is no stranger to the world of interiors. In a new exhibit at the Southampton location of Sebastian + Barquet gallery, she contributes her visually provocative fabrics to a lineup of iconic furnishings, upholstering the pieces of furniture in characteristically inventive ways. “I like to challenge myself during the creative process and explore new, unexpected pairings,” says Weinrib. “In revisiting these classic furnishings and using them as a canvas for my own work, I wanted to showcase the original designs, while simultaneously re-introducing them to viewers from a fresh, contemporary perspective.”

Pieces by noted designers like Vladimir Kagan (known for the Erica chaise lounge), Gio Ponti (father of the Leggera side chair) and Osvaldo Borsani (the man behind the P32 lounge chair) are reimagined in Weinrib’s modern coverings. A three-seat sofa by Ico and Luisa Parisi is swathed in brown-stripe ikat; the Erica chaise, inspired by Kagan’s late wife, gets a cloak of lavender Egerton jacquard. (Prone to falling for particular colors, Weinrib is currently in a love affair with purple.) The approach is intriguing, stirring up a new appreciation for those famous lines. Through September; 67 Jobs Ln.; 631-238-0456; sebastianbarquet.com; madelineweinrib.com.

August 08, 2012
By Erin Schumaker | Art

Marilyn Monroe
Getty Images

Marilyn Monroe, America’s favorite sexpot and the thrice-divorced star of Gentlemen Prefer Blondes and Some Like It Hot, passed away at the age of 36 in August 1962 from a drug overdose, alone in her bedroom with the phone in her hand. Fifty years later, the Salvatore Ferragamo–founded Lungarno Collection is honoring the actress with the black-and-white photography exhibit “On the Heels of Marilyn,” at Gallery Hotel Art in Florence (through September 15). The exhibition, organized by Galleria Brancolini Grimaldi, features intimate photographs of the iconic actress, including casual shots of her primping in front of a makeup mirror and lounging by the pool and photos taken with her third husband, Death of a Salesman playwright Arthur Miller.

“We wanted to celebrate Marilyn Monroe and her extraordinary life,” says Phillip Haller, vice president of the Lungarno Collection. “We hope to remember her talent and ultimately inspire guests with her unique career and lifetime.”

Just blocks away, the Salvatore Ferragamo Museum (museoferragamo.it) hosts a second Monroe-inspired exhibit (through January 28, 2013). The provocative starlet was a loyal Ferragamo customer, and the museum has dozens of pairs of her iconic pumps on display, not to mention photographs, film clips and documents—including an order for Ferragamo shoes handwritten by Monroe herself. Two-night Florence City Break package, including entry to the Salvatore Ferragamo Museum, from $228 a night; Gallery Hotel Art; 5 Vicolo dell’Oro; 39-55/27263; lungarnocollection.com.

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