Visual Arts News from the Vancouver Art Gallery Library, August 13, 2014


Gumhead a step too far. While most visitors wouldn’t think twice about sticking a piece of gum on the popular Gumhead installation, an innocent-looking platform is deterring those in wheelchairs from participating in public art. Sitting on top of a grassy mound outside the Vancouver Art Gallery is a seven-foot-tall sculpture of artist Douglas Coupland’s head. Many have already stuck gum on the gallery-commissioned sculpture since its inception on May 31 as part of a crowd-sourced and interactive project.” The Courier, August 8, 2014

Art this week: Holger Kalberg, Rodney Graham and Corey Bulpitt. A look at three of the most influential art events in Vancouver this week. Vancouver Sun, August 13, 2014


Waterfront attracts diverse mix of artists. John Meredith, Rita Letendre, William Perehudoff, Kathleen Lynch, Dean Lewis, Debbie Hunt and Marty Machacek are some of the local artists mentioned by Robert Amos. Times Colonist, August 8, 2014


Supersizing Prairie Gothic: The Art of Heather Benning. “34-year-old Regina artist Heather Benning subverts that dynamic, creating large-scale art installations in the midst of rural areas…this week, she debuted her first-ever Ontario installation—an homage to farm labour that has seen some 600 sculptures of hands installed in an old tobacco kiln in Norfolk County…Benning chats via email and phone about her inspirations, installations, and insights into rural loss and change. Canadian Art, August 8, 2014


Anatomy of a Blockbuster: Ai Weiwei: According to What? at the AGO. “Last summer’s Ai Weiwei show at the Art Gallery of Ontario not only outperformed all expectations; it forwarded a new idea of what a blockbuster art exhibition might be.” Toronto Star, August 8, 2014

Video Report: Rebecca Belmore’s Bodies of Survival. “In this report—viewable by clicking on the Video icon in the link —Canadian Art editorial resident Natasha Chaykowski visits “KWE: Photography, sculpture, video, and performance by Rebecca Belmore” at the Justina M. Barnicke Gallery in Toronto” Canadian Art, August 12, 2014

Gravity’s Rainbow: A Visit With Libby Hague. “It was while attending her recent “Family Dynamics” exhibition at the sparkling white room that is Toronto’s Verso Gallery that I decided all over again—after already admiring Libby Hague’s work for years—that one really ought to give oneself up, utterly, unreservedly, joyously, to an artist who would list “gravity” as one of her materials.” Canadian Art, August 11, 2014

Lynne Cohen’s Influence Felt in Aimia Prize Shortlist. Four artists—including one Canadian—were shortlisted this morning for the Aimia | AGO Photography Prize. Chicago-based Canadian David Hartt, LA-based Israeli Elad Lassry, South African Nandipha Mntambo, and American Lisa Oppenheim are vying for the $50,000 first prize, which is decided by public vote. Canadian Art, August 13, 2014


Paper Palaces. “In a profession often associated with showmanship and ego, Ban’s work appears humble, and appropriate to a historical moment that celebrates altruism, or its posture.” And yet: “You can live in a house designed by Shigeru Ban only if you are recently homeless or exceedingly wealthy.” The New Yorker, August 11, 2014


University of Chicago Whitewashes Commissioned Mural, Artists Claim Censorship. The University of Chicago whitewashed a mural created by visiting artists to the school without consulting the artists or the organizer of their visit. The school says the mural was painted over in response to complaints from local residents in the neighborhood where it was painted, but the artists involved are calling it censorship. This past spring, artist and University of Chicago lecturer Katherine Desjardins brought members of the Montreal artist collaborative En Masse to do a residency at the school. Hyperallergic, August 11, 2014

New York

King of Ming’ devoted life to Chinese art. Robert Ellsworth, a prominent dealer of modern Chinese painting, Ming dynasty furniture, archaic jade and other examples of Asian art who helped amplify many of the major Asian collections in the West, died on Aug. 3 in Manhattan. He was 85. Globe & Mail, August 10, 2014

Museums See Different Virtues in Virtual Worlds. “This is an account about how two New York museums seized this dream — and how one of them clings to it still, while the other has found that the Internet’s true value isn’t in being everywhere but in enhancing the here.” New York Times, August 7, 2014


Claims of retaliation for faculty dissent at Corcoran Gallery of Art. “Jayme McLellan, an adjunct instructor at the Corcoran, had been engaged to teach her usual class in professional practices for artists this fall. Last week “she was notified that the class was canceled and her employment terminated. … The problem: McLellan is the co-founder of Save the Corcoran” – the group that filed suit to stop the planned dissolution/division of the Corcoran between the National Gallery and GWU.” Los Angeles Times, August 11, 2014

For Save the Corcoran, an anxious wait in the face of a merger. “The court calls them “The Intervenors,” which sounds as if it could be the name of a performance art collective. If that were true, the past few weeks would have been quite a show for the group Save the Corcoran.” Washington Post, August 12, 2014

When Trash Talk Becomes Brainy. “A bracket-style competition by public vote to choose the Smithsonian Institution’s “most iconic” object has led to a barrage of competitive tweeting and Photoshopping, as a Pullman train car races against the original “Star-Spangled Banner” flag, and a Tyrannosaurus rex skeleton battles the National Zoo’s young panda.” New York Times, August 11, 2014

Willmington, Delaware

Museum Under Fire for Selling Its Art. “The AAMD sanctioned the museum in June for selling a piece from its collection to raise funds. Now that it’s already in museum-Siberia anyway, the DAM has decided to auction off two more works: Winslow Homer’s Milking Time and Alexander Calder’s The Black Crescent.” New York Times, August 7, 2014


Losing Maya Heritage to Looters. The Mesoamerican antiquity trade goes back almost to the Spanish conquest. Business for the huecheros accelerated as more people became fascinated with all things Maya while villagers were dislocated by the 1960-1996 civil war, which was most intense in the 1980s. National Geographic, August 8, 2014


Jake and Dinos Chapman sculpture removed from Rome gallery. A nude sculpture by British artists Jake and Dinos Chapman has been removed from a Rome gallery after complaints from a children’s rights group. BBC, August 11, 2014


Painting Black Presence: Kerry James Marshall. “How do you paint absence? This is the formal and conceptual problem that US artist Kerry James Marshall set for himself early on—“to call attention to the absence of black presence” in visual art. Entwined with this was another aim: getting authentic representations of black culture accepted into an exclusively white visual-art tradition such as Western painting.” Canadian Art, August 7, 2014

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