Art Attack!

Art exhibitions Summer 2017

Any round-up of 2017’s top exhibitions of sculpture, fashion, painting, design, art installations and photography would obviously need to include the big art fairs, like the ongoing  Biennale in Venice and Art Basel in Miami Beach in December. But here, we also take a look at current and upcoming exhibitions from Wolfgang Tillmans and Marina Abramovic, as well as the David Hockney retrospective and Rei Kawakubo’s sculptural costumes.



Art exhibitions Summer 2017June 21–October 23, 2017, Centre Pompidou, Paris

After celebrating his 80th birthday at the Tate Modern, and before continuing at New York’s Met, English artist David Hockney is showing at the Centre Pompidou, nearly 20 years after his Paris debut at the same venue. The exhibition brings together an important compilation of David Hockney’s most famous works, celebrating his achievements in painting, drawing, print, photography and video across six decades. From his portraits and images of Los Angeles swimming pools to his Yorkshire landscapes and most recent works, this exhibition shows how the roots of each new direction lay in the work that came before.

Credit: David Hockney, «A Bigger Splash», 1967, Type: Image © David Hockney Collection Tate, London



Art exhibitions Summer 2017May 4–September 4, 2017, The Met, New York City

Under the Comme des Garçons label founded in 1969 by Japanese designer Rei Kawakubo, the abstract, architectural creations by the now-74-year-old designer resemble sculptures. The Costume Institute’s exhibition examines the work of the fashion designer, known for her avant-garde designs and ability to challenge conventional notions of beauty, good taste, and fashion. The Art of the In-Between has nine themes of dualisms, including Absence/Presence, High/Low, Fashion/Anti-fashion, and Object/Subject, and opens with five red garments, including two body-con dresses from her groundbreaking Spring/Summer 1997 collection, Body meets Dress—Dress Meets Body. Kawakubo breaks down the imaginary walls between these dualisms, exposing their artificiality and arbitrariness. The thematic show features approximately 140 examples of Kawakubo’s womenswear for Comme des Garçons dating from the early 1980s to her most recent collection, many with heads and wigs created and styled by Julien d’Ys.

Credit: Rei Kawakubo (Japanese, born 1942) for Comme des Garçons (Japanese, founded 1969); Courtesy of Comme des Garçons. Photograph by © Paolo Roversi



Art exhibitions Summer 2017Through August 13, MoMA, New York City

Making Space shines a spotlight on the stunning achievements of women artists between the end of World War II (1945) and the start of the Feminist movement (circa 1968). The exhibition features approximately 100 works of paintings, sculptures, photographs, drawings, prints, textiles, and ceramics by more than 50 international artists. By bringing these works together, it spotlights the stunning achievements of women artists during a pivotal period in art history, including works that were acquired soon after they were made in the 1950s and 1960s, such as those by Lee Krasner, Helen Frankenthaler, and Joan Mitchell as well as many recent acquisitions including works by Gertrudes Altschul, Ruth Asawa and Alma Woodsey Thomas – that reflect the museum’s ongoing efforts to improve its representation of women artists.

Credit: María Freire (Uruguayan, 1917–2015). Untitled.1954. Oil on canvas, 36 1/4 × 48 1/16″ (92 × 122 cm). The Museum of Modern Art, New York. Promised gift of Patricia Phelps de Cisneros through the Latin American and Caribbean Fund in honor of Gabriel Pérez-Barreiro, 2016



Art exhibitions Summer 2017

Giacometti (until September 10, 2017) and Fahrelnissa Zeid (until October 8, 2017) at Tate Modern, London

The Tate Modern, London, is currently featuring two very impressive exhibitions. One of the few artists of the last century whose work is often more recognizable than his name is Alberto Giacometti. His distinctive elongated figures are inescapably linked to the post-war climate of existential despair. Tate Modern brings together over 250 works, including rarely seen plasters and drawings that have never been exhibited before, and showcases the full evolution of Giacometti’s career across five decades, from early works such as Head of a Woman to iconic bronze sculptures such as Walking Man. The other ongoing exhibition at The Tate that should not be missed is the abstract art by Turkish artist Fahrelnissa Zeid. Trained in both Paris and Istanbul, Zeid was an important figure in the Turkish avant-garde movement in the early 1940s and the École de Paris in the 1950s. Her vibrant abstract paintings are a synthesis of Islamic, Byzantine, Arab and Persian influences fused with European approaches to abstraction. Zeid’s paintings are huge kaleidoscopes of mesmerizing color.

Credit: Fahrelnissa Zeid: Resolved Problems, 1948, Istanbul Museum of Modern Art Collection, Eczacıbaşı Group Donation (Istanbul, Turkey) © Istanbul Museum of Modern Art © Raad Zeid Al-Hussein

Credit: Alberto Giacometti: Man Pointing, 1947, Tate © Alberto Giacometti estate / ACS+DACS in the UK, 2017



Art exhibitions Summer 2017August 4–September 17, 2017,Hamburger Bahnhof – Museum für Gegenwart, Berlin

Rudolf Belling (1886–1972) was one of the most important German sculptors of classical modernism. He created a groundwork of abstract Expressionist sculpture, and was at the forefront of the avant-garde—but then returned to figurative work for decades. His stylistic vocabulary ranges from expressionism to new objectivity, futurism to constructivism, abstraction to naturalism. This stylistic ambivalence became apparent in 1937, when Belling presented works in two major antipodal propaganda exhibitions, Degenerate Art and the Great German Art Exhibition (where a sculpture of the boxer Max Schmeling was presented as an expression of official Nazi culture) just a few hundred meters away from each other in Munich. Later he moved to Istanbul, where he lived in exile for 30 years. The large-scale exhibition now at Berlin’s Nationalgalerie (temporarily based in the Hamburger Bahnhof) is the first comprehensive presentation of his oeuvre in 40 years, and shows Belling’s importance to the 20th-century avant-garde movement. Around 80 exhibited items from the 1910s to the 1970s, including sculptures, drawings, models, films, photographs, and figures, illuminate the many facets of Belling.

Credit: Rudolf Belling: Kopf in Messing, 1925, Messing, 33,3 x 22,5 x 19 cm, Nationalgalerie, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin | © bpk /Nationalgalerie, SMB / VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2016



Art exhibitions Summer 2017May 28–October 1, Fondation Beyeler, Basel

Wolfgang Tillmans has earned recognition as one of the most exciting and innovative artists working today. He first rose to prominence in the 1990s for his photographs of everyday life and contemporary culture. These have since attained iconic status for their evocation of the mood of an entire generation, with its carefree urge for freedom and its desire to seize life’s moments. Tillmans has gone on to work in an ever-greater variety of media, and has taken an increasingly innovative approach to staging exhibitions. Alongside portraiture, landscape and intimate still lifes, Tillmans pushes the boundaries of the photographic form in abstract artworks that range from the sculptural to the immersive. Straight after his super-successful Tate Modern show in London ended in June, Wolfgang Tillmans is presenting even more work at the Fondation Beyeler in Basel, Switzerland, until October. There are around 200 photographic works on display, from 1989 to present day, and his more recent sound-based interest will also be evident through an audiovisual installation.

Credit: Wolfgang Tillmans: Adam, 1991, Courtesy Galerie Buchholz, Berlin/Cologne, Maureen Paley, London, David Zwirner, New York



Art exhibitions Summer 2017

June 17–October 22, 2017, Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Copenhagen, Denmark

This summer, the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art in Copenhagen presents the first major retrospective presentation of Marina Abramović’s work in Europe. Very few artists in the world today evoke such strong emotions and reactions as the pioneer of body and performance art, Abramović. With her own body and energy as her primary material she has developed one of contemporary art’s most radical and uncompromising practices since the 1970s. Best known for physically and mentally demanding performance works that are often transgressive and revolve around the body, gender, energy, time, pain, presence, and identity, her performances range from powerful, violent, and risky actions to quieter exchanges of energy and meetings with the audience—members of her audiences have increasingly become key players in her works. The Cleaner comprises more than 100 works from early concept sketches, paintings and sound works to presentations of the artist’s performances—including her collaboration with her former partner, Ulay.

Credit: Marina Abramovic, Stromboli III Volcano, Photo, Stromboli, 2002, © Marina Abramovic, Photo © Paolo Canevari, Courtesy of the Marina Abramovic Archives



Art exhibitions Summer 2017June 28–September 24, 2017, Design Museum, London

Breathing Color by Hella Jongerius is an installation-based exhibition that blurs the boundaries between art and design. It takes a deeper look at the way color behaves, exploring shapes, materials, shadows and reflections. The Dutch industrial designer has become known for the manner in which she fuses industry and craft, high- and low-tech, traditional and contemporary, color and color. We see the world in color but rarely do we appreciate how color shapes what we see. Jongerius has consistently addressed the significance of colors and surfaces in contemporary design in her work with textiles, ceramics and furniture. She has been the Art Director for colors and materials at Vitra for many years The exhibition is divided into separate spaces that simulate daylight conditions at specific times of the day—morning, noon and evening. These three phases explore the impact of changing daylight on our perception of color. Each installation includes a series of three-dimensional objects as well as textiles.

Credit: Breathing Colour by Hella Jongerius ©Roel van Tour



Art exhibitions Summer 2017Berlin Art Week (September 13–17, 2017) and Art Berlin Contemporary(September 14-17, 2017)

Berlin Art Week is a great opportunity for art enthusiasts to discover and discuss the works of international and local artists exhibited in hundreds of galleries. In 2017, visitors can expect opening receptions, talks, performances, and art installations, as well as large-scale exhibitions focusing on established artists such as Monica Bonvicini, Danny Lyon, Willem de Rooij, a retrospective on Harun Farocki, and countless artists from various genres. Besides the fairs, the abc (art berlin contemporary in collaboration with Art Cologne) will be kicking off Berlin Art Week. It will be presenting around 110 international galleries from 16 countries at Gleisdreieck Station, featuring famous galleries like Blain|Southern, Eigen+Art, König Galerie, Esther Schipper, and Sprüth Magers, to name but a few. In addition to emerging as well as established galleries focusing on contemporary art, one will also be able to discover modern art.

Credit: abc art berlin contemporary, © Kulturprojekte Berlin, Foto: Alexander Rentsch