The New Black Vanguard -Photography between Art and Fashion

06.11.2019 | Art , Blog , Fashion | BY:

Cover image: Renell Medrano, Untitled, Harlem 2017

A few weeks ago, NYC based not-for-profit foundation Aperture opened its doors to The New Black Vanguard — an exhibition of photography between art and fashion curated by Antwaun Sargent. 

The New Black Vanguard is a visual  documentary of fifteen artists who works fuse the genres of art and fashion through innovative perspective. It compiles the images of these talents that have recently been on reign in magazines,  ad campaigns & museums across the world , be it New York, London, Johannesburg or Lagos.  Each piece of work opens up conversations from different perspectives around the roles of the black body and black lives as a subject matter, collectively celebrating black creativity in fashion and art.

Not only through the hands of photographers, but stylists, designers and other creatives as well. The exhibition includes selected works from photographers including Campbell Addy, Arielle Bobb-Willis, Micaiah Carter, Tyler Mitchell, Daniel Obasi, Justin French and a few others. It will be open throughout the rest of the year and will come to a close on January 18, 2020. For more information visit Aperture. 

Jamal Nxedlana, Late Leisure, 2019
Campbell Addy, Adut Akech, 2019
Dana Scruggs, , Nyadhour, Elevated, Death Valley, California, 2019

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Ingrid Deuss Gallery presents : “When I saw the mountains for the first time, I thought they were clouds ” by Joost Vandebrug

01.11.2019 | Art , Blog | BY:

Later this month, Antwerp based Gallery Ingrid Deuss Gallery is set to present an exhibition by Dutch photographer and filmmaker Joost Vandebrug. The showcase, titled “When I saw the mountains for the first time, I thought they were clouds,” will feature fifteen of Vanebrug’s photographs made between 2011 and 2018 when he immersed himself in the street life of Romania’s capital, Bucharest. 

The images are an honest documentary of the photographer’s six years spent, where he captured the daily lives of the street children of the city. The photo series represents an extension of his acclaimed film “Bruce Lee and the Outlaw (2018)” where he followed the life of the young Nicu who becomes his muse as well as his guide to the emotional underworld of homeless children and people protected under the wings of Florin Hora, a.k.a Bruce Lee. 

All the images for the exhibition will be showcased on Japanese washi paper, which helps in showcasing a similar unpredictability and vulnerability related to the way in which the photographer experienced the project in Romania.

The exhibition will open its doors on November 24th and will run until January 25th. 

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“Nearness” – an exhibition in celebration of British Black History Month

24.10.2019 | Art , Blog , Culture | BY:

Imagery courtesy of Ronan Mckenzie

This evening Brixton Village will celebrate UK Black History month with an exhibition curated by British acclaimed designer Bianca Saunders. The showcase, titled ‘Nearness’ is a pop up installation that explores black creativity in a vast variety of forms. It will include the works of multi-disciplined filmmaker & video artist Akinola Davies Jr, fashion designer Jazz Grant, poet and director Caleb Femi as well as photographer director and curator Ronan Mckenzie. 

“As London continues to grow and evolve in this age of gentrification, we need to keep stoking the fires of multiculturalism and inclusivity by celebrating creativity in up and coming areas. 

The concept of this exhibition is something that speaks to me on a personal level — supporting other artists of colour in London. I reached out to each of these artists personally, based on their unique creative vision: my favourite multidisciplinary talent from the community that enriches London’s culture dialogue,” explained curator Bianca Saunders. 

The exhibition will open it’s door tonight at 6pm at the Market Row in Brixton and will run until the evening of October 27th.

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Thierry Mugler: Couturissime at Kunsthal Rotterdam

18.10.2019 | Art , Blog , Fashion | BY:

Cover Image: Manfred Thierry Mugler , Photo by Max Abadian

Last spring Montreal Museum of Fine Arts launched an exhibition at its headquarters in collaboration with the Clarins Group and the Maison Mugler. The exhibit titled “Theirry Mugler: Couturissime” showcases some of the work of the great French creator Thierry Mugler through his time as a couturier, director, photographer and perfumer with a special focus on his ready-to.wear and haute couture creations. After closing its doors in Montreal, the exhibition has now found its way to the Kunsthal Museum in Rotterdam having opened only a few days ago. 

It features over 140 ensembles, many of which are being put display for the very first time since their creation between 1973 and 2001, with an additional collection of stage costumes, videos and sketches. Of course imagery also plays a major part, as the photographs of industry icons such as Avedon, Bourdin, Goude, LaCapelle, Newton, Ritts and Isserman have been curated all around the gallery to give an even wider perspective of the mythical extravagance which surrounded and still surrounds the designer.  

“I have always been fascinated by the most beautiful animal on Earth: the human being. I have used all of the tools at my disposal to sublimate this creature: fashion, shows, perfumes, photography, video… I am not a person who dwells in the past, but the MMFA, through Nathalie Bondil, was the first to propose to me to stage my creations and imagine together a free, global and reinvented artistic vision. How could I refuse?” said creator Manfred Thierry Mugler. 

Thierry Mugler: Couturissime is only display at Kunsthal Rotterdam from October 13th 2019 to March 8th 2020. 

Yesmin Le Bon wearing Thierry Mugler photographed at the London Palladium for ES Magazine
Patrice Stable, Outfit by Thierry Mugler
Helmut Newton, Outfit by Thierry Mugler
David LaChapelle, Outfit by Thierry Mugler

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Jamea Richmond-Edwards presents Prom Night at the Kravets Wehby Gallery

09.10.2019 | Blog | BY:

Cover Image : Fly Whips and Fly Girls, 2019

We all know of the commemorative event that signals towards the end of teen hood as being high school prom night. If we haven’t witnessed it first hand, then we’ve lived vicariously through the likes of films as old as Grease or as recent as High School Musical. But why is it that this event is such a milestone ?  

Later this month, New York based gallery Kravets Wehby will present an exhibition by American artist Jamea Richmond-Edwards that gives interesting insight on the momental event as a ritual for black American teenagers.

 Opening on October 17th , the artist will take her audience on a visual journey of paintings as she explores the question of why prom is such a right-of-passage for Black America.  Each of the artist’s paintings tells a story that hints to the bilateral perspectives surrounding the event. In her piece “Fly Whips and Fly Girls,” she depicts two prom goers posed against their cars ( a photo op. that has become somewhat of a staple on prom night ), implying a sense of autonomy. In another painting, “Seated Girl on Serpent Thrown with Stink Pink Gators,” Richmond-Edwards nods in references to her Southeastern American heritage through the girl’s pink alligator boots. Each painting tells a different story and offers an elevated perspective of the event that has become the norm so much so that we barely even think about it , through the eyes of black America. 

If in New York, this exhibition is not one to miss, and will run until November 16th. For more information , visit Kravets Wehby.

Slow Dance with Big Chief, 2019
The Prettiest Dress, 2019
Seated Girl on Serpent Throne with Stink Pink Gators, 2019

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“When you dance you make me happy ,” ft selected artworks from the Luciano Benetton Collection

12.09.2019 | Art , Blog | BY:

Cover Image – Boakye Pass  by Lynette Yiadom

This week Italian contemporary gallery Gallerie Delle Prigioni opens it doors to a new exhibition entitle  “ When you dance you make me happy ft selected artworks from the Luciano Benetton Collection”. The exhibition , set to open tomorrow at the gallery’s location in Treviso has been curated by Nicolas Vamvouklis, and will include themes which focus along the lines of the human body. 

“ The starting point of the exhibition is the tension between inner and outer worlds, public and private realms interpreted through the idea of the body as a shell that is both a home and a prison,” reads the press release. Throughout the exhibit the themes then extend to the collective dimension and observe the performative roles the body plays in social gatherings of celebration, mourning or protest.

The collection include pieces from names like Helmut Lang, Maripol , Nick Cave, Hermann Nitsch and other gems from Italian Billionaire Luciano Benetton’s private collection. The exhibition entrance is entirely free and will run until November 10th. For more information visit Imago Mundi Art. 

Barkley L. Hendricks – Fela Amen
Image by Maripol

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PUBLIC Gallery: Echolocation by Charlotte Edey

31.08.2019 | Art , Blog | BY:

Early this month on the 4th of September, British artist Charlotte Edey is set to present her debut solo exhibition Echolocation at the PUBLIC Gallery space in London. Edey’s exhibition is set to speak along themes that have influenced the artist through her experience in career, identity, spirituality and femininity as she explores how we navigate our environment with a series of drawings, embroidery, women tapestry and silk georgettes.

“Employing organic symbolism and the traditionally gendered mediums of embroidery, weaving and textile, the fabric of the worlds is shaped and informed by the idea of femininity and how it intersects with the multiple facets of identity. Anthropomorphic landscapes and atmospheres punctuated by curls and waves speak to expanding beyond the body,” she comments.

“Across the series a desire for harmony is communicated through curvilinear landscapes and symmetry of form. Edey’s attempt to resolve divisions also manifests within the physical nature of the works. Distinctions between synthetic and natural processes are blurred as drawings are translated via a digital jacquard loom to woven tapestry, displayed alongside hand-embroidery and hand-weavings.”

The exhibition is set to run throughout the month and will eventually close its doors on the 28th of September. 

Freshwater, 2018, Woven jacquard tapestry with hand embroidery
Garden, 2019, Woven jacquard tapestry with freshwater pearl, mirror detail and hand embroidery
Biform, 2019, Graphite pencil

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Creswell Crags Cave set to house psychoacoustic artwork exhibit

27.08.2019 | Art , Blog | BY:

Cover Image: AlanJames Burns at Creswell Caves by Stephen Garnett – CAG Photography

At the beginning of next month , a series of interesting performances will take place at an art event being held in a space that was recently revealed to house the largest concentration of apotropaic marks in protection against witches and curses ever found in the UK. Beginning on September 3rd at the Creswell Crags Cave in Worksop, Nottinghamshire, Visual and Environmental Artist AlanJames Burns will bring forth the first British presentation of Burns’ “Entirely hollow aside from the dark.” The project, done in collaboration with the Creswell Crags Museum & Heritage Centre , will stage an immersive psychoacoustic sound artwork in the cave, following Burns’ success of an Irish nationwide tour completed in the summer. 

The “Entirely hollow aside from the dark” project was created by the artist to take place inside ancient natural auditoriums,  “using these caves a physical metaphor for the mind the cavern personifies the consciousness of Mother Earth as she struggles with her worsening mental health, brought on by the human distressing of her body,” reads the press release. 

“In the gloom of these caves an audible dialogue echoing Mother Earth’s thoughts and regrets unfold a symphony of choreographed sounds shifts around the cave mirroring the processes of the human mind. “ The exhibition will also be done in collaboration with writer Sue Rainsford and  Sound Editor Ian Dunph and is set to run until September 7th. For more information visit Entirely Hollow Aside From the Dark. 

AlanJames Burns at Kesh Caves, Sligo 2017. Photo by Trevor Whelan
Entirely hollow aside from the dark, Audience with lights (Smugglers Cave, Portrane, Dublin, Ireland, 2016). Photo by Brian Cregan

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Saatchi Gallery Presents – Sweet Harmony: Rave ft Seana Gavin and others

12.07.2019 | Art , Blog , Culture | BY:

Today,  London’s Saatchi Gallery opens it’s doors to an immersive retrospective exhibition devoted to presenting a revolutionary survey of rave culture through a variety of various voices who have experienced it. The exhibition, titled Sweet Harmony: Rave| Today is set to open on Friday July 12th and will include several portrayals of the new world which emerged from the acid house scene. Throughout the exhibition, the space will feature multimedia room installations and audiovisual works by some of the rave movements experienced by first hand. As the concept of the acid house revolution is set to be recalled through photo series , live music events, talks and panel discussions by the movements’ architects and influencers of the 80s and 90s. 

The Saatchi Gallery’s director Philly Adams in partnership with co-curator Kobi Prempeh have assembled a team of youthful visionaries and photographers including Sheryl Garratt, Agnes Bliah, photographers Tom Hunter, Vinca Petersen and a Twin favourite Seana Gavin. In anticipation for the upcoming event, we called upon the London based artist for a quick chat on what to expect. 

. In anticipation for the upcoming event, we called upon the London based artist for a quick chat on what to expect. 

For the exhibition, your work is mainly based off your time during the Spiral Tribe,  what would you say was the definition of  the term “rave” during a time such as this?

The raves I attended began in London. They were parties put on by collectives and sound systems such a Spiral Tribe who would take over abandoned empty buildings like office blocks, factories, post offices and outdoors in fields and quarries and would transform them into spaces where people from all walks of life could sweat the night away on a dance floor surrounded by likeminded individuals. The parties were run on a donation only entrance policy. Their ethos were all about the freedom to party as a way to break away from the commercial club culture that was emerging at the same time. They were illegal, very underground and it became a subculture. When Spiral Tribe left the UK in 1993 they would continue their mission across Europe. Other sound systems followed and raves turned into multi sound system Techno Festivals known as  ‘Teknivals’.

New Years day,Barcelona by Seana Gavin

 How would you say rave culture has changed since then and in what ways has the way in which you document rave culture since then evolved?

Overlapping with the scene I was part of, rave culture expanded from illegal warehouses into ticketed commercial club events. Even though raves and Teknivals still go on today they can’t have the same energy and rawness from the early days. Nothing can be repeated like that. In the early days to find out about the parties there was a secret party line info number you’d call on the night. It is incredible to think that between 30-50,000 people attended the iconic Castlemorten 3 day rave in the British countryside in 1992 purely through these channels and on a word of mouth basis.

In Europe, flyers were also handed out to pass on info about the next party. In my era it was pre-smart phones and social media so there was less documentation. Nowadays the digital age and overload of selfie culture has tainted things. Everyone has a portable camera in their phone so there is less mystery around it.

I think it’s great that clubs like Berghain in Berlin try to keep things more old school by storing your phone as you enter the club. Which also forces you to be present in the experience and not live through the lense of your smart phone camera.

record dusting, hostomice Teknival 1998, by Seana Gavin

 What would you like your audience to take away from your series?

I’d like to think the viewers would feel a sense of intimacy to the subject matter. I wasn’t a photo journalist documenting this scene at the time, I was immersed in this way of life . The photos I’ve included in the show capture the raves locations, the journeys in between, the aftermath of the parties and people who defined the scene.

I would hope the viewers would get a sense of the perspective of what it felt like to be part of that community which was more than a night out but an alternative outlook to society and a way of life.

Twice as Nice, Aiya Napa, London, 1999
VINCA PETERSEN Bus And Rig

Other names of images makers included in exhibition are Ted Polhemus, Dave Swindells and Mattko. Throughout the exhibition, a space is created featuring the visually stimulating collections of each artist accompanied by a Spotify playlist with sub-genres of Detroit Techno, Acid House, Happy Hardcore, UK Garage and Grime. Uniting a selection of like, yet diverse minded creatives including electronic musician, visual artists and of course photographers. After the exhibition’s debut this Friday, it shall remain open to the public throughout the summer, until September 14th. For more details, visit Saatchi Gallery.

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Artist+AI: Figures & Form in the Age of Intelligent Machines

18.06.2019 | Art , Blog | BY:

Cover Image: Hyperbolic Composition 1 by Scott Eaton

This evening American artist Scott Eaton debuts his first solo exhibition at the Somerset House in London under the themes  of the convergence of the human hand and technology of artificial intelligence. Throughout the exhibition generative artificial intelligence (AI) is morphed with century old practices of drawing and sculpting. As an interdisciplinary artist with a background in anatomy, Eaton creates pieces that offer new perception on the understanding of the human form.

“For as long as humans have made art, the figure has been a primary focus of creative exploration. In each age new tools, techniques and styles influence how the figure is portrayed. Often the tools remain the same -pencil, charcoal, paint, clay – but the style changes – impressionism, cubism, surrealism, abstract expressionism. At certain times, however, there are seismic advances in technology that create entirely new possibilities for representation – photography, moving image, animation … and now AI” the artist explains. “The magic of the process is revealed,” Eaton says, “when you guide the AI to create something unlike anything it has seen before: ‘The AI has no choice but to do what I ask, no matter how difficult or unreasonable my request. The result is often a wondrous, unexpected, interplay of visual ideas, both mine and the machine’s.” The exhibition opens it’s doors on June 18th and will run throughout the week until June 23rd. 

Peter Paul Rubens, The Fall of the Damned, 1620, Oil paint
Fall of the Damned, 2019 © Scott Eaton

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Pervilion at Silver Building: May 30th – June 2nd

30.05.2019 | Art , Blog | BY:

Cover Image: Still from To Spoor A Stockroom by Dorothy Feaver

Today in East London, opens a new and interesting exhibition at the Silver Building space in Silvertown.  “Pervilion at Silver Building,”  curated by Dorothy Feaver features the likes of scent, sculpture and film creatives, respectively Katharina Dubbick, Jack O’brien and Stella Scott. For the show, these artists explore the various states of dissolution as they replicate and activate the defunct of the boiler rooms of a sixties office block. Proposing several ways in which the body may register, absorb and release tensions within a built environment. 

In the concrete chambers the Silver Building, sculptor Jack Obrien presents a series of hanging sculptures titled “Buildings that Weep” that approach the body’s complex interactions with surrounding physical structures. Featuring husk-like forms, made of pigmented silicon, silicon chains and taut lines that trace the folds of drapery while mimicking the patterns of veins and muscular definition. While scent designer Katharina Dubbick fills the upper boiler room with an installation called “Time Capsule 7.23am (2019).” 

“I want to capture the moment of exhaustion after a climax – the sense of space that’s left when feelings settle, ” she explains. Through steam the space is filled with scents that stimulate associations of sweat, saliva, sex, gin and tonic, cigarettes, smoke,  sticky skin among other products, capturing the smells of latex and body odour with the help of perfumer Meabh McCurtin. And in a film entitled “To Spoor Stockroom (2019)”, filmmaker Stella Scott tracks liquid cycles that confront the sanitised the future and fetishisation of space in central London. The exhibition is a response to both the pressures and pleasures of the urban fabric of London, presented in abstract ways to intrigue the entire human sensory system. The exhibition will run for four days and close its doors on June 2nd.

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Cecilie Bahnsen x Matches Fashion Capsule Collection

24.05.2019 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

Danish designer Cecilie Bahnsen recently teamed up with luxury retailer Matches Fashion on the release of a fifteen-piece collection released this week . The collection, a continuation of her SS19 collection,  includes a selection of the designer’s signature feminine designed accentuated with embroidery, beading and other details.

“The designs for the exclusive capsule collection are a beautiful continuation of our last collection. Combining sculptural silhouettes with couture techniques reinterpreted for Matches Fashion woman,” explained the designer. 

For the collection, Bahnsen collaborated with a few female creatives including teenager Margrethe Hjort Hay who inspired the floral beadings as well as photographer Josefine Seifert who shot the editorial. In celebration of the collaboration, Cecile has also put on an installation open to the public until June 1st, at the Matches Fashion Mayfair townhouse, featuring furniture from Swedish Design Group Magniberg and the work of glass artist Nina Norgaard to stylishly accompany the designer’s collection. The Cecilie Bahnsen x Matches Fashion collection will soon be available online Matches Fashion.

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Soft Opening: Belly Room by Nevine Mahmoud

23.05.2019 | Art , Blog | BY:

British visual artist Nevine Mahmoud recently partnered  with London art gallery Soft Opening on her first European solo exhibition entitled ‘Belly Room.’  The exhibition which opened earlier this month features a selection of five sculptures carved from marble and hand-blown glass.  Throughout the themes of the exhibition, the artist explores her ongoing interest in disembodied body parts with the series of glass forms that represent single breasts and full busts, re-opening the conversation around women’s bodies and their objectification thereof. 

With a palette of pinks, amber and nude, the translucent sculptures subtly distort and dissect the female human form, with each sculpture swelling and sagging along the walls of the gallery.  The sculpture series also includes curving marble slides and sheets mimicking a sort of abstract plastic humanity.

Throughout the exhibition, “the artist negotiates the boundary distinguishing perception and expectation. Searching for a form at once recongnizable and alienated, these uncanny sculptures reverberate with suggestive innuendo.”

The belly room is currently open at the Soft Opening in London and will run until June 30th. 

Nevine Mahmoud, bust (phantom Li), 2019 
Nevine Mahmoud, breast (tamarind), 2019
Nevine Mahmoud, carved slide (2019)

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Playing For Keeps: Molly Matalon & Caroline Tompkins – May 23rd – June 29th

06.05.2019 | Art , Blog , Culture | BY:

Later this month, creative studio Enlarge Your Memories, in partnership with Italian  lens-based bookstore Micacamera will open the doors to an exhibition entitled Playing for Keeps,  featuring the work of American photographers Molly Matalon and Caroline Tompkins.

This exhibition, set to open in the Micacamera space in Milan, will tell the tale of a contemporary woman’s viewpoint of romanticized America. With its infamous patriarchal history, the typical photography that addresses American ‘landscape’ has tendency to only display the postcard values of automobiles, family values and great outdoors.  However, in 2019, the idea of American lives have been expanded on by a wealth of cultural and artistic effort.

Throughout this exhibition Molly Matalon takes on a domestic point of view as she explores the narrative of the housewife. She explores the part of the typical housewife’s world not shown on camera. Portraits of home visitors, palpable sexual tension etc. With the compilation of images, she addresses the freedoms and power plays commonly associated with men in like-environment and in photography. On the other hand, Caroline Tompkins’ work embodies the female YOLO America. It displays a narrative of the fast life, climbing the highest trees, hiking the tallest mountains, getting too close to the fire.

Tompkins’ work denounces gender stereotypes and strives for a reclamation of the pseudo masculine American landscape as she schools her audience on how gratifying it is to live life with the wind blowing through one’s hair. In Playing For Keeps, the photographers explore and update the ideas of humour, sexuality, ownership and power play within today’s contemporary America. 

Image by Caroline Tompkins
Image by Molly Matalon

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Public Gallery: “The Redemption of Delilah” by Alexi Marshall

02.05.2019 | Art , Blog | BY:

Cover Image: Your Hair Was Long When We First Met, 2019, Alexi Marshall

In less than a week, London based gallery Public Gallery, will present an exhibition featuring the work of British visual artist Alexi Marshall titled The Redemption of Delilah.

The exhibition, set to open on the 8th of May will reveal a series of work from Marshall exploring and reimagining denigrated women of history through the humanity and nuance that lies in what has been traditionally known as sin. In her work, with the use of print, fabric, drawing and embroidery, the artist invites her viewers for a deeper analysis of condemned female figures, with the story centred around the biblical story of Samson and Delilah. As Delilah’s name has been known to be synonymous with the qualities of being voluptuous and treacherous, her fate following her actions highlighted in the bible has never been revealed, which in turns, forever shows her in a degenerated light.

Throughout the exhibition Marshall highlights the characters’ powers as well as their fallibilities as she explores the internal and external forces and at play.  Each pieces of wrk highlights characters from different narratives including Mexican and Trinidadian folklore that tell stories of tragedies, fate, forgiveness and life and death. 

“At a time when powerful women are still regularly denigrated in contemporary society, Marshall shines a new light on these ‘imperfect female sinners’ offering them a voice beyond the confines of history. These characters from religion and folklore become Marshall’s own personal deities, neither benevolent or malevolent but acting as symbols for fate and the innate wild nature of humanity. ” The exhibition will run its course throughout May at the Public Gallery until the 4th of June. 

Sweetest Downfall, 2019, Alexi Marshall
Jezebels Burden, 2019, Alexi Marshall

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Foam: “I Can Make You Feel Good” by Tyler Mitchell

01.05.2019 | Art , Blog , Culture , Fashion | BY:

Cover Image: Boys of Walthamstow, 2018, Tyler Mitchell

This Spring Foam Museum has opened photographer and filmmaker Tyler Mitchell’s first solo exhibition entitled I Can Make You Feel Good.

Since his historical debut last year with American Vogue’s September issue, featuring Beyoncé as cover, the photographer has been exploring the visuals of the black utopia ever since. This exhibition showcases a compilation of images that feature black youth in safe spaces. With the use of his signature candy coloured palettes and natural light, Mitchell creates images of young black people in gardens, park and in front of idyllic studio backdrops where his subjects appear as free, expressive and vulnerable beings. He creates a  sort of utopia around his subjects that mimic scenarios that are in contrast to what one might acknowledge as reality, bringing a sort of humanity to the forefront. 

The exhibition also premieres two of Mitchell’s video works: “Idyllic Space and Chasing Pink” and “Found Red. ” These are presented as audiovisual installations that explore the senses of play and childlike freedom within the black utopia. His stimuli for the exhibition was based off a younger period of his life where the dynamic site of Tumblr was very influential to the development of his creative vision. “I would very often come across young, attractive white models running around being free and having so much fun — the kind of stuff Larry Clark or Ryan McGinley would make. I very seldom saw the same for black people in images — or at least in the p hotography I knew of them.” I Can Make You Feel Good presents Tyler’s rendition of an earlier Tumblr in a time where it provided creative nutrients inclusive of black youth. The exhibition will run throughout the Spring at the Foam in Amsterdam until the 5th of June. 

Untitled (Two Girls Embrace) 2018, Tyler Mitchell
Untitled (Hat) 2018, Tyler Mitchell

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Six artists to discover during Art Brussels

28.04.2019 | Art , Blog | BY:

Cover Image: Autour de nous huile sur bois de Karine Rougier, 103 x 93 cm, 2018

Brussels is increasingly becoming one of the most refreshing European cities in which to discover art. Young spaces like collective Ballon Rouge and the collaborative La Maison de Rendez-Vous are opening new spaces and giving a new dose of oomph to the scene. Last week’s Art Brussels, an annual fair in its 37th edition with 148 galleries, was not too big, not too small – the goldilocks porridge of fairs. Here were six artists worth only a Eurostar away.

Merve Iseri

Turkish painter Merve Iseri was both a focus’ at Balon Rouge’s beautiful peach painted booth at the fair and the subject of a solo show at their downtown space. Her graphic large scale paintings touch on the body and landscape, balancing the figurative with a strong sense of abstraction and colour. An off-modernist breath of fresh air.

vision of holding a star in motion, Merve Iseri
Night Walk, Merve Iseri

Kayode Ojo

One of the NYC’s hottest current artists, Ojo originally emerged from a photographic background which he still balances with a glamorous and intelligent take on sculpture. His mirrored, misused furniture works covered with diamante jewellery or lame dresses were perfectly paired at Martos Gallery’s booth with a sexy large scale images of a trans model.

Boohoo Plus Verity Slinky Plunge Split Maxi Dress, Kayode Ojo
Balenciaga Bootcut, Kayode Ojo

Anicka Yi

Outside of the fair, the highlight of gallery night on Wednesday was Anicka Yi’s incredible show at Gladstone Gallery. Aiming to dissolve the boundaries between the human, animal, and vegetable, the show included sculptures that played with the living and kinetic. Its central room was filled with small animatronic moths flickering inside bulbous sculptural balls accompanied by a flickering electronic sounds.

Anicka Yi: We Have Never Been Individual
Anicka Yi: We Have Never Been Individual

Rubem Valentim

Mendes Wood DM devoted their booth at Art Brussels to Brazilian artists on their roster. It included some stunning paintings and a wood carved sculpture by the late Rubem Valentim, a self-taught artist who fused modernist ideas with the geometry, religion and aesthetic of Brazilian cultures. His Afro-Brazilian references were intentionally political, and the results exude vibrant energy.

Emblema 78, (1978), Rubem Valentim
Emblema-Relevo, (1980) , Rubem Valentim

Hoda Tawakol

It was impossible not to love Egyptian artist Hoda Tawakol’s sculptures at Gallery Isabelle van den Eynde’s booth. Made from tights, synthetic hair, rice, wadding and resin, these fetish-like small nudes are strongly rooted in the legacy of feminist 1970s art and the use of textiles as a loaded material. These gorgeous little fat figures questioned the representation of femininity.

Nude #20 (2019), Hoda Tawakol
Nude #20 (2019), Hoda Tawakol

Karine Rougier

Another off-fair highlight was Karine Rougier’s incredible detailed show at the young Fondation Thalie. Born in Malta and based in Marseille, this show brought together every element of her practise from scrapbook collages to tiny found object sculptures to her surreal miniature paintings. The work was filled with disembodied hands, doses of sex and horror and a dreamlike fantastical brilliance.

Soulever les Frissons, Détail, 38 x 45 cm, huile sur bois, Karine Rougier, 2019

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Congregation by Sophie Green

24.04.2019 | Art , Blog , Culture | BY:

For the past two years British social documentary & portrait photographer Sophie Green has been working on a project in celebration of Southwark’s community of Aladura Spiritualist African churches and congregations. As the product of her detailed studies, Green has created a compilation of all the documented images of the community that is often referred to as the “white garment” churches and will be presenting them in the form of an exhibition and hardcover titled Congregation this Thursday at the Hannah Barry Gallery. 

The images give a front row seat to the Christian denomination practised by Yoruba Nigerians that throughout the past 40 years has become a greater part of Southwark London —  being the community which hosts one of the highest concentration of African churches in Europe. Congregation will also raise conversation about collective identity and power within subcultures, cultural practices and traditional dresses, food and customs in modern technology and fashion. For the project, the photographer collaborated with members of the congregation through portrait sessions and photographic workshops which go hand in hand with the candid images of the men, women and children throughout their religious practice. 

Congregation will be launched available online this Thursday and can be purchased via Loose Joints.

Congregation by Sophie Green 
Congregation by Sophie Green
Congregation by Sophie Green

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Love Me by Stella Asia Consonni – April 25th

23.04.2019 | Art , Blog , Culture | BY:

This Thursday Italian photographer Stella Asia Consonni is set to open the doors to her solo exhibition entitled Love Me . The showcase, set to take place for one night at Protein Studios in Shoreditch, London, will feature a compilation of intimate images of with diverse couples as subjects.

The photographer first began shooting for the project a year ago, with the intention of creating an online photo series as a means of healing as she overcame her then-recent break-up. One of the images from the original series, featuring two men mid-kiss was uploaded by the photographer via instagram and was soon after deleted by the platform for “not following community guidelines.” Instagram later issued an apology and allowed the image to be re-uploaded but the second time around Consonni was met with homophobic comments and slurs in reaction to the image.

This was when she decided the best way to contest the homophobes and bigots was to create an entire exhibition in celebration of the many colours and forms of love. In addition to the photo series, the photographer will also debut a short film complementing the series by documenting short bits and pieces of these love stories. 

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Foam Talent Exhibition: May 15th

19.04.2019 | Art , Blog , Culture | BY:

For the third year in a row,  Amsterdam based international talent organisation Foam returns to Red Hook Labs in New York for their annual group exhibition Foam Talent. Set to debut on May 15, the exhibition will feature the work of twenty international photographers who were selected through the organisation’s annual talent call from a pool of 1853 creatives under the age of 35. 

The showcase will feature the works of these artists under several tabs of contemporary themes and topics such as social politics, nostalgia, night fall, homesickness and grief. A few of the names featured will include French duo Durimel,  Chinese photographer He Bo, Australian Sophie Gabrielle, Italian Salvatore Vitale, British Maisie Cousins, among others. For further info on how to cop tickets visit Foam

Cover image: “Untitled” from the series Worry for the Fruit the Birds Won’t Eat, 2018 by Sophie Gabrielle

“Kaelyn and the girls” from the series Frères dune île pas très proche, 2018 © Durimel
“Ants” from the series grass, peonies, bum, 2018 © Maisie Cousins
Model Angela and her personal story”, 2016, from the series Separation Anxiety, 2018- ongoing © Dima Komarov
“Untitled” from the series How to Secure a Country, 2015-2018 © Salvatore Vitale

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