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“It’s strange, I must have been away too long, the faraway, my home, is in my dark dreams. It’s strange, with strangled words, while drowning. I screamed alone in the water, in a fever (…) Such will be the title of Julien Creuzet’s show; or not” “It’s strange, I must have been away too long, the faraway, my home, is in my dark dreams. It’s strange, with strangled words, while drowning. I screamed alone in the water, in a fever (…) Such will be the title of Julien Creuzet’s show; or not” is the beginning of a poem, a first-person litany, of a voice that soon doubles up and multiplies. It’s also the title of Julien Creuzet’s solo show at the Palais de Tokyo, or not. This exhibition will come alive in the form of secular pop songs. A deep-sea landscape in a plastic pool. An unaccentuated rhyme illuminated by a bluish light, turning around on itself. A parrot glitching with a guitar on its foot. A melodic meandering along jagged shores. An array of ragmen’s stalls at the Croix-de-Chavaux market. A breath and a riff. A choreographic score derived from a Dogon ceremony. Sirius B rotating to the beats […]

The Middle East, unrecognised countries, radioactive or forbidden zones seen as “unintentional natural parks” are all territories that Louis-Cyprien Rials has explored or inhabited. From these zones marked by violence or whipped up by great conflicts, the artist delivers a silent, sometimes mystical image, using video and photography. His moving pictures made up of still shots, which are often long and devoid of human presence, talk of the impossibility to grasp such abandoned, transformed spaces, filled with beliefs and run through with stigmata. Louis-Cyprien Rials is presenting at the Palais de Tokyo a film and a series of objects made with Ramon Film Productions. This production company, set up by Isaac Nabwana I.G.G., brings together Ugandans from various origins in a studio not far from the Wakaliga road, in a ghetto in the suburbs of Kampala, the capital of Uganda. Together, they have been writing and producing successful, low-budget films for over ten years. Their feature-length movies are inspired from Chinese Kungfu films and convey the violence of American action movies. With Louis-Cyprien Rials, they produce an adaptation of Rashomon(1950) by the famous Japanese director Akira Kurosawa. The result is hybrid: it mingles filmic and cultural references, while leaving open the […]

Some utterances are the very act that they describe. The philosopher of language J.L. Austin called them “performative” during a series of lectures in the 1950s – published posthumously as “How to Do Things with Words” and translated into French as “Quand dire c’est faire” (when saying is doing) – thus upturning linguistics by opening out a new field based on a theory of acts of language. As for Angelica Mesiti, for several years she has been developing research into non-verbal communication. Her ambitious video installations, both the fruition of long-term explorations and chance encounters, explore the potentialities of language which, beyond speech or writing, are contrary to any explicit expression, but still remain possible as a means of communication. As the artist says, “words are not my tool; all my training is about expression in a different way.” Her solo show at the Palais de Tokyo, the first in a French institution, is entitled “Quand faire c’est dire” (when doing is saying), a symbolic reversal of a performative utterance. Covering the 2012-2017 period, the exhibition highlights an iconic selection of Angelica Mesiti’s works, most of which having never been displayed in France. Deployed over a broader extent in the […]

For his first solo show in France, Theaster Gates has initiated a new project, pursuing the exploration of social histories of migration and inter-racial relations. He thus deals more exactly with questions of black subjugation and the resulting imperial sexual domination and racial mixing, while concentrating on an episode in American history. These themes allow Gates to explore new cinematographic, sculptural and musical futures while examining the history of land ownership and race relations in North Eastern, United States. The starting point of this exhibition, entitled “Amalgam”, is the story of Malaga Island, a small isle in the state of Maine, in the USA: In 1912, the governor of the state of Maine had all of its inhabitants expelled. This poor population, made up of an interracial, mixed community of about 45 people, considered to be “indolent” by many of the local inhabitants, was forced to spread out through the region, some of them even being condemned to psychiatric institutions. The term “Amalgam”, which currently seems outdated in English-speaking culture, was used to describe a racial, ethnic and religious mingling. It has acquired for Theaster Gates a “loaded” significance, calling for a new series of works made up of videos, […]

Franz West (1947–2012) brought a punk aesthetic into the pristine spaces of art galleries. His abstract sculptures, furniture, collages and large-scale works are direct, crude and unpretentious. Visitors to this major retrospective will be able to handle replicas of his Passstücke (Adaptives) – papier-mâché pieces made to be picked up and moved. They were a turning point in the relationship between art and its audience. He also created playful sculptures incorporating objects from everyday life such as a hat, a broom, or even a whisky bottle. In his final years he produced large, brightly coloured and absurd sculptures both for galleries and public spaces. Born and based in Vienna, West collaborated with numerous artists, musicians, writers and photographers. He has been a vast influence on younger artists – his friend and collaborator Sarah Lucas has contributed to design of the exhibition.

Following the acquisition in 2018 of ‘Grodenstraße nach Varelerhafen’ (Polder Road to Varel Harbour), dating from 1938, the Sammlung Moderne Kunst is staging an exhibition on Franz Radziwill, one of the most important representatives of Magic Realism. The focus is on his Expressionist early work as a continuation of the ‘Brücke’, as well as on his involvement with the Nazi regime – between conformity and defamation as a ‘degenerate’ artist. One of Radziwill’s canvases, painted on both the front and back, is being exhibited for the first time showing both sides, to highlight the break between an Expressionist early work and a principal work of Magic Realism.

Invited work. Marriages of Martín de Loyola to Beatriz Ñusta and Juan de Borja to Lorenza Ñusta de Loyola The scene depicted in this anonymous painting brings together two weddings that occurred at different times and places with the purpose of showing the blood ties between the Inca dynasty and descendants of two of the founders of the Society of Jesus, Saint Ignatius of Loyola and Saint Francis Borja. The conquest of America was thus represented as a harmonious union between the vanquishers and the vanquished.

This ‘archival’ exhibition of The Brotherhood of New Blockheads (1996-2002) is special, being the first time the group has been presented officially on the international stage. In what way is the legacy of the New Blockheads of interest today? It is in part quite logical, for it was born in a time when a deficit in the present and a crisis of utopian ideals made looking to the past the only source of hope. Utterly in keeping with their own time, standing apart from any fixed styles or trends, The Brotherhood of New Blockheads was everything we could want of art: daring, despairing, naive, radical. Their legacy is relevant today for it provides a model for frank and uncompromising artistic behaviour, for maximum sincerity, something which is so keenly lacking in the world today.

The exhibition by New York-based, German-Croatian artist Genoveva Filipovic is titled Shiva 2019 ✆. Her art seems enigmatic, but light; it is hermetic, yet open, serious, yet oblique. (…) What is shown in Shiva 2019 ✆ ? The exhibition consists of 17 works on canvas, made specifically for Kunsthalle Zürich, five identical posters, flat cardboard and a series of round prints on paper, which have been placed beneath the paintings as if they were train wheels.

Plain and functional elegance, colourful Pop Art, a historical cathedral flavour – the metro stations built in Berlin between 1953 and 1994 with their distinctive post-war and post-modernist feel are still a defining feature in the daily lives of Berlin’s residents. Once threatened by radical revamps, 27 of these 82 undergound structures are now listed monuments, thanks to a dedicated younger generation of academics, photographers and film-makers.

The ALBERTINA Museum is presenting a comprehensive selection of the most outstanding works from the Princely Collections under the title From Rubens to Makart. The museum is also devoting a simultaneous exhibition to the Viennese watercolor, an important and central category of works within the Princely Collections, in an exhibition entitled Rudolf von Alt and his Time. Well over 100 of the most important paintings and sculptures from the exquisite collection of this family, rich in tradition like few others in Europe, span an impressive range from the Early Renaissance in Italy to the Baroque period, from Viennese Biedermeier to the historicism of the Makart era. Iconic works such as Antico’s Bust of Marcus Aurelius, which was acquired for the Princely Collections just recently, the life-size bronze sculptures of Adrian de Vries, and Peter Paul Rubens’s famous Venus in Front of the Mirror are the focus of an exhibition that amounts to a veritable promenade through five centuries of art history.

IN-SIGHT has set its focus on the 1809 figural group sculpture entitled Mars and Venus with Cupid, by Upper Austrian sculptor Leopold Kiesling. The exhibition reveals the work’s political topicality against the backdrop of the marriage of Napoleon I and the daughter of Emperor Francis II (I), Marie Louise.