Wednesday, 7 December 2011

Eoin Llewellyn - Collisions - Interview

Here is a recent video interview with Irish artist Eoin Llewellyn in his studio in Berlin on the occasion of his exhibition "Collisions" which was held in September 2011 in the Theatergalerie Bremen.

Monday, 21 November 2011

From Tomaselli to Keaton...

'Painting Between the Lines' at CCA Wattis Institute for Contemporary Art

Click on Post Title for nice show at Wattis in San Francisco. Also see below for a new entry in BEST LINKS: A Piece of Monologue. To explain: the Wattis show features Fred Tomaselli working in response to Beckett's 'Watt'. Coincidently, I then came across Beckett again in Artforum's November 'Top Ten' feature,  which cites 'Film' (1965) by Schneider and Beckett, and starring Buster Keaton. Intrigued, I went looking for more information and came across A Piece of Monologue which features a Post on the subject of 'Film'. All connected in a very unconnected sort of way, but a good reason to highlight the exhibition, the film and the blog....

Buster Keaton on set of 'Film' (1965)
(see link to A Piece of Monolgue at bottom of page)

Monday, 17 October 2011

Niamh O'Malley: 'Model'

Click on Post Title for link to this show. The framed works, in the entrance towards the gallery and in the main space itself, are as crucial to the reading of the show as the centre pieces of sculpture and projection. They create another engrossing layer to the viewing experience, where perception is caught between the images behind the glass and the surface of the glass itself. Whether the glass is tinted, or whether the inside of the frames and the media used to create the drawings have been treated with a carefully calibrated and closely matched monochrome range of media, is near impossible to work out. A hugely rewarding and engaging show.

Friday, 7 October 2011

The Painting Corner

Click on Post Title for link to the new blog of the Fine Art Painting students and staff of the University of Ulster at Belfast. Linked with painttube Dublin and Paint Club London.

Tuesday, 20 September 2011

Dennis Hopper Photographs 1961-67

'Jasper Johns', contact sheet detail

If you can quickly skip the fly leaf recommendation by Piers Morgan (!?) then this new Taschen book is a rewardingly hefty and detailed feast of information and images. Photographs from around the LA art scene, on film sets and on the Civil Rights march from Selma to Montgomery were amongst Hopper's many subjects. Click on Post Title for link to the exhibition at MOCA which preceded this book, shortly before the actor's death. MOCA's website also carries a nice blog called The Curve.

Civil Rights March

Friday, 9 September 2011

Berliner Liste 2011

Exhibiting with the third space gallery, Belfast, at the 2011 Berlin Art Fair: Mark McGreevy, Dougal McKenzie and Mary McIntyre. Runs through to Sunday 11th September- click on Post Title for info. and directions.



Tuesday, 23 August 2011

Venice 1966

Came across this old Studio International today, and was struck by the fact that it coincided with Venice 2011- thus, exactly 45 years ago, this was how the Biennale was covered by one of the major art mags of the time. It would be interesting to find out if the film was actually shown on the BBC and if it is still obtainable. I also notice that in amongst the various protagonists is Alan Gouk, the Belfast born painter. Click on Post Title to see work of his in John Moores 22.

Thursday, 4 August 2011

Evelyn O'Connor

Click on Post Title above for link to the latest edition of Subjects of the Painter.

Sunday, 10 July 2011

Fumes of Formation

Click on Post Title for link to this show at QSS Gallery, Belfast, running to July 29th; four recent graduates from Belfast, Cork and Limerick with interests in construction/ deconstruction of materials in painted and 3-dimensional formats. Evelyn O'Connor will be the next interview in Subjects of the Painter at the end of July.

Evelyn O'Connor

Colette Cronin

Christopher James Burns

Gerard Carson

Friday, 8 July 2011

Provisional Painting

Raoul De Keyser: Untitled, 2006, oil on canvas, 351⁄2 by 493⁄8 inches.

'Provisional painting is not about making last paintings, nor is it about the deconstruction of painting. It’s the finished product disguised as a preliminary stage, or a body double standing in for a star/masterpiece whose value would put a stop to artistic risk. To put it another way: provisional painting is major painting masquerading as minor painting.'.

'Restless painters tend to work in several different manners at once or embark on new approaches in serial order.'

I came across this article sometime ago and thought some of you might be interested,

Wednesday, 6 July 2011

Cy Twombly

Cy Twombly/ Untitled/ 2001

In the same week that Mary Beard trashes Robert Hughes' book 'Rome' (the same author of The Shock of the New and sometime writer on Cy Twombly also), the artist has passed away in his adopted city. As well as his paintings, I was always drawn to his sculptures and photographs, perhaps even more so. Click on Post Title for link to a very recent article on the photographs of Twombly.

The Artist's Shoes, Lexington/ 2001

Sunday, 3 July 2011

Mary Delany's Cuttings

Hand coloured and cut paper, circa 1772, perhaps the first actual collage works...The extraordinary story of Mary Delany's 985 botanical collages, which she began aged 72, could be this summer's best read. Canadian poet Molly Peacock interweaves bits of her own life around this extraordinary biography, with really incisive observations on what the medium of collage can achieve. One early comment, that this work raises questions about the difference between accuracy and realism, still has a strong resonance with why collage continues to be employed by many current practitioners. Click on Post Title for a bit more information on the entire collection which is kept in the British Museum.

Sunday, 26 June 2011

Not out until October but you can pre-order now...

Tuesday, 21 June 2011

Frank Stella... and the Simulacrum

This is a text, that I keep coming back to, by the 'neo-geo' artist Peter Halley "Frank Stella... and the Simulacrum" Published in Flash Art, No. 126, January 1986. (Click on the post title) Halley argues that although Stella is seen as part of the modernist tradition his work "conforms closely to a model of post-modernism that is dominated by ideas of hyper-realization, simulation, closure, and fascination."

The video is an interview with Stella recorded 14 years earlier (simultaneously funny and obnoxious!)

Monday, 13 June 2011


Click on Post Title for link to 1972 Munich Olympics U.S.S.R.v.U.S.A. Basketball Final.
The colour images broadcast by European and U.S. television did not allow for conclusive proof that Sergei Belov's foot was over the line when making the winning pass to Alexander Belov. The images broadcast by Soviet television were in black and white, which allowed for a clearer contrast magnification showing that his foot remained behind the line.
The work 'Medulienka' proposes that Belov bought his girlfriend a dress to celebrate his team's gold medal success, which is entirely speculative. However, a statement of fact is that Belov died only two years after his marriage, and six years after the winning basket of 1972, at the age of 27.

Medulienka/ 2011

Sunday, 5 June 2011

Paul McKinley at the third space

Paul McKinley's show, 'Palisade', deals with our attitudes and relationship to the landscape of historical sites which are sometimes also termed as places of 'Dark Tourism'. A compelling series of works which not only grapple with how the narratives of the sites can be depicted, but also finds ways of presenting the surfaces of the works as sites of conflict in themselves- several of the works balance finely between matt and glistening paint, drawing you in to picture spaces which are at once seductive yet uncomfortably haunting. Show runs to July 2nd. McKinley is represented by Kevin Kavanagh Gallery in Dublin.

Friday, 3 June 2011

Now's the Time

Amy Sillman/ Cliff 1/ 2005

Click on Post Title for link to a somewhat wistful but nevertheless great article by painter Amy Sillman in the new Summer 2011 edition of Artforum. It seems there's more in the air just now to do with AbEx, than with my previous reflections in Post May 18th that it was 80s painting that seemed to be resurfacing (although previous Posts April 12th and 13th, and August 18th had a bit to do with AbEx affairs.) There again, the legacy of the 'expressive gesture' in painting is certainly around a lot just now- maybe it's more a conjoining of AbEx and 80's Bad Painting that's in our time just now.

Friday, 20 May 2011

Eigse, Progress report

Currently I am down in Carlow installing in VISUAL as part of this year's Eigse festival which opens on the 10th June, with the exhibition running until August. It's very exciting, the show is shaping up to be really interesting, so if anyone is about you should check it out!

Wednesday, 18 May 2011

Kostabi World

Mark Kostabi/ Useless Knowledge

The James Kalm Report (click Post Title) catches up with Mark Kostabi. 'His' work always seemed to be on the cover of Flash Art in the 80s when I was at art college. I remember it better than Kippenberger's (see Post below.) In this time of Painting's undoubted revival (it will not last, but it will come back again, and then it will go again...) there's something in the air that feels like nostalgia for 80's painting. But it was 'bad' in every way, and perhaps now the 'Pictures Generation' that preceded it has more currency with contemporary art today. Still, can't help but liking the encounters that happen throughout James Kalm's report above.

Tuesday, 17 May 2011

Kippenberger and Picasso

Martin Kippenberger/ Picasso Museum, Malaga

Nearing the end of its run now, this show (click on Post Title for link) encapsulates the myriad of approaches  Kippenberger's practice took. However, there is a tighter focus brought to bear on the late series of paintings he made in response to particular images of the 'grieving Jacqueline' and also Picasso in his 'white trunks/ underpants'. These latter images were to inspire Kippenberger's own 'pants' self portraits.

Kippenberger/ Self Portrait/ 1988

His name is still often cited- particularly amongst current German painters- as an abiding influence. Less, probably, to do with the ethos of the 'bad painting' of the 80s which he dominated, but more to do with the sheer weight and presence of his massive output and personality. For me, the best part of the show was a large selection of his drawings made on hotel notepaper. Many of these appeared to depict, and predict, his death just a couple of years after they were made.

Friday, 6 May 2011

Black and Shaw

                                          George Shaw

Two divergent painters on the 2011 Turner Shortlist, George Shaw and Karla Black, make for a very interesting comparison of materials and methods. Click on Post Title for link to video, for an honest and intelligent appraisal of his work by Shaw himself. His show at Baltic is nearing its end, and interestingly a series of influential movies had been selected by the artist to accompany the show- The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner for instance. This is common enough amongst painters- Peter Doig's Studio Film Club comes to mind- but a bit like artists listening to music in the studio, is this an over-played and unnecessary embellishment of the painters' process?  The filmic narrative held within the rectangle of the screen, and the painted narrative held within the limit frame of a painting can have strong associations at times. But perhaps the strong influence that a movie or piece of music has on a painter is a soft option for fleshing out the concerns of a work.

Sunday, 1 May 2011

Like Drinking Turps?

Most people will have picked up the recent issue of Turps Banana to look at the very good interview by Gavin Lockheart with Peter Doig. I picked up my copy from the Douglas Hyde Gallery the other day and at the end of it all began to wonder why I had put TB on Best Links at the bottom of NOCM. The interview with the ranting John Hoyland is bad enough- not a word of it is worth repeating- with his general bad attitude about contemporary art, women painters in particular and women in general. But it led me to see how throughout the whole of this issue, not a single female painter features (unless you count the really quite good article on crime court artists which features two female illustrators) and not that many in other recent issues either. It's becoming a bit of a boys' painting mag, and uncomfortably so.

Dubliners no.1

With the current renovations at the National Gallery of Ireland, the Jack B. Yeats Collection has been rehoused in a smaller, more intimate suite of rooms that give a stronger overall impression of the works on show compared to previously. Over at the Kerlin, Brian Maguire's 'Notes on 14 Paintings' brought me to consider formal and thematic links between the two, particularly in view of a recent review of Maguire's show which attempted to make parallels with Francis Bacon. It seemed off the mark to me at the time, and more so now. Yeats and Maguire are more comfortable bedfellows.

From the Jack B. Yeats Collection, National Gallery of Ireland

Brian Maguire at The Kerlin Gallery, Dublin

Dubliners no.2

Alexis Harding at The Rubicon Gallery, Dublin

Shiva Linga at The Douglas Hyde Gallery, Dublin

Shiva Linga at The Douglas Hyde Gallery, Dublin

An interesting parallel runs between the Alexis Harding show at The Rubicon and the Shiva Linga paintings at the Douglas Hyde Gallery. The Shiva Linga paintings (each one made anonymously) follow a regular format on paper mounted on cardboard, and Harding has created an installation of paintings on cardboard covered, spiral bound catalogues. Both provide compelling takes on abstraction, albeit coming from quite different directions and with different intentions.