Tuesday, 13 October 2015

John Hoyland on Julian Schnabel and photos by Nick Smith

Given the current exhibition of John Hoyland's work at the Newport Street Gallery we are reposting this clip from the Turps Banana interview in 2010 in which John discusses Julian Schnabel and the European sensibilities. Also here are a small selection of Nick Smith's wonderful photographs taken at the time:

All images copyright of Nick Smith

Thursday, 10 September 2015

Michael Rey and Anke Weyer at Office Baroque

Office Baroque's up up and coming exhibitions of Michael Rey and Anke Weyer run from 11th September - 24th October and 7th November. 
Anke Weyer (1974) studied at Frankfurt’s Staedelschule and at New York’s Cooper Union and has been living and working in New York since 1999. Anke Weyer recently completed a residency at the Elaine De Kooning studio in East Hampton.
Emulsified, 2015

ASAP Already, 2015

Michael Rey makes monochromatic wall works with panels entirely surfaced in plasticine clay and oil paint. Born in 1979 Michael Rey currently lives and works in Los Angeles. 

Deek, 2015
Muta, 2015

Anish Kapoor's 'Dirty Corner' vandalisation..

ARTNEWS: From The Art Newspaper regarding the vandalisation of Anish Kapoor's abstract sculpture, 'Dirty Corner'..

Anish Kapoor 'Dirty Corner' 2014
'Anish Kapoor’s controversial, cavernous sculpture Dirty Corner sited in the grounds of the Palace of Versailles outside Paris has been vandalised for a second time. In a statement, Kapoor condemned the attack, saying that the 33 foot-high sculpture has:

“become a receptacle for the dirty politics of anti-semitic vandals, racists and right-wing royalists… I will not allow this act of violence and intolerance to be erased. Dirty Corner will now be marked with hate and I will preserve these scars as a memory of this painful history.” 

Fleur Pellerin, the French culture secretary, said on Twitter that the defacement was an act of “stupidity and violence against culture”. Catherine Pégard, the president of the Palace of Versailles, tweeted that the attack was “intolerable”, adding that her staff were outraged. Phrases were daubed on Saturday, 5 September, in white paint on the work and the surrounding rocks, some of them anti-Semitic; one of the slogans stated that “Christ is King in Versailles”, another said “disgust, dishonour, treason, satanism.” 

The 60m-long work was quickly cleaned after it was attacked in June when vandals splashed the piece with yellow paint. Kapoor’s exhibition at Versailles is due to close on 1 November.'

Tuesday, 21 July 2015

Agnes Martin, Tate Modern until 8th October 2015

'The beauty is not in the rose, the beauty is in your mind..'

As always Tate dont make it easy to share images or docs..so look here for more information.

Robert Rauschenberg: 'Cardboards and Gluts' a short discussion..

Bob's ubiquitous cardboard boxes, create for me an innovative and humourous use of a found and 'abstracted' space.. 

From a few years ago, with Susan Davidson, curator at Guggenheim and RRF Board member and David White, curator at Robert Rauschenberg Foundation (RRF)and board member.

'What was the journey..?' Robert Motherwell and the New York School, 'Storming the Citadel' 1991

It's an old classic, but we love it, here at the Abstraktion Headquarters..

A documentary about Antoni Tapies, 2009, a poetic insight into his working practice..

Tapies talks beutifully about how he works with materials..

Willem de Kooning: 'A Way of Living', the best book on De Kooning?

Willem De Kooning 'A Way of Life' by curator Judith Zilczer, Phaidon Press, published March 2014..

I have just bought this book, a sumptuous and gorgeous book on the whole of De Kooning's paintings, much from the Willem De Kooning Foundation, it gives a better understanding of his innovative approach to painting than I had thought, certainly havent seen many of these works before.

Monday, 13 July 2015

Alberto Burri in Città di Castello

Alberto Burri Foundation

If you happen to be heading to Italy this summer and haven't yet been to the Alberto Burri Foundation in Città di Castello in Perugia, Umbria, it is worth fitting in a visit.

Thursday, 9 July 2015

Kenneth Noland at Castelli

Kenneth Noland Color and Shape 1976–1980 at Castelli
June 8–July 31,

Kenneth Noland (April 10, 1924 – January 5, 2010) 
Noland’s shaped canvases were last exhibited in New York more than 20 years ago, and have never before been on display in Los Angeles. Forty years after these works were created, Castelli Gallery and Honor Fraser present a comprehensive and fresh perspective on this distinctive period of Noland’s career. 

Wednesday, 8 July 2015

Sandra Porter at Quercus

Exhibition at Quercus Gallery featuring
Sandra Porter’s work:
ENCLOSURES 11 July – 15 August 2015

Sandra Porter’s work explores a fascination with the power of repetition. Through playing with grids, stripes and recurrent schemes she creates series of images that are similar but never the same. Pieces differ; reflect each other yet also work independently. Recent prints and paintings are ever evolving improvisations around the stipe and grid format.  These works seek a synthesis between the horizontal and vertical stripe together with the all-important negotiation of monochrome, colour and definitive mark.

Bothan Window

Long Bothan

Storyboard Bothan

Whilst colour, structure and pattern are the means by which I interpret the ancient and modern worlds, I remain deeply influenced by the art of the early Italian Renaissance as well as the traditions of Modernism, Constructivism, Minimalism and Abstract expressionism. When all figurative references are absent in the work the imagination can create a genuinely original narrative, which can be said to be truly abstract. Only then can a visual language really speak.

In the same way that my printmaking influences my painting and my painting affects my printmaking, the relationship between what I see in the outside world works symbiotically with the processes of my practice as an artist My preoccupations in the studio can suddenly resonate with something I see outside of it. A new experience of a piece of architecture or art can kick start a whole new series of work and when all figurative references are absent in the work the imagination begins to create a narrative which can be said to be truly abstract.
Skye Bothan II
Gaining a Masters in Painting from Chelsea School of Art in 1981, Sandra Porter later studied Printmaking with Master Printmaker Dorothea Wight in the 1990s. She has exhibited widely in a thirty year career latterly in New York and France as well as the UK and her work can be found in Private & Public Collections including Arthur Anderson, Deutsche Bank, the Government Art Collection, Hammersmith Council and in the Tate and V&A Libraries.

Monday, 6 July 2015

De Wain Valentine at David Zwirner

De Wain Valentine at David Zwirner Works from the 1960s and 1970s

June 25 - August 7, 2015

Circle Blue Alizarin Crimson Flow, 1971
Valentine came to Los Angeles in the mid-1960s, moving there from his native Colorado, where he was already an established sculptor, to teach a class in plastics technology at UCLA. He had begun working with plastics as early as the 1950s, but it was not until his arrival in the artistically fertile environment of Los Angeles that he started to utilize the material in a more expansive way.

Large Ring Light Violet, 1968
Particularly influenced by the California landscape, Valentine has noted, “All the work is about the sea and the sky. I would like to have some way…to cut out large chunks of ocean or sky and say, ‘Here it is.’”1 Despite his grand ambitions, Valentine was initially confronted with material limitations, as polyester resins at the time could not be poured in volumes that exceeded 50 pounds. Not willing to accept this restriction, he partnered with Hastings Plastics in 1966 to create a new polyester resin that could be cast in larger quantities. The resultant material, which is commercially known as Valentine MasKast Resin, not only allowed the artist to dramatically increase the scale of his work, but also continues today to have applications beyond the realm of art. Polyester resin, with its inherent ability to both contain and reflect light while delivering a luminous dimensionality, would from that point on form the foundation of Valentine’s practice.

On view will be a number of Valentine’s “Columns,” corporeally scaled sculptures cast in colored polyester resins that recede from a wider base up to a narrow tip. These works have a prismatic effect, both transmitting and refracting light, and thus capturing an optical sense of depth, space, and color. Executed in varying heights and widths, works such as Column Yellow and Column Lavender (both 1968) engage the viewer on a phenomenological level.

A highlight of the exhibition will be Valentine’s twin Gray Columns (1975-76), which each stand twelve feet tall and have never before been exhibited together in their intended configuration. Originally executed for Baxter Travenol Laboratories’ newly built corporate headquarters in Deerfield, Illinois, Valentine had conceived of two immense vertical columns standing side by side, but because of architectural modifications (the ceiling in the company’s reception area was lowered at a late stage of construction), Valentine was forced to install the two slabs on their sides.

Ring Blue, 1968

 The exhibition will additionally include a number of Valentine’s “Circles,” a shape he began to experiment with in 1969. These works display not only the artist’s mastery of geometrical form, but also highlight his command of color in sculptures like Circle Blue Smoke Flow Blue (1970), with its dappled blue-gray surface, and Circle Gold-Rose (1970), with its optically shifting hues. A room of these large-scale circles was installed in Valentine’s 1970 solo presentation at the Pasadena Art Museum, known at that time as an important platform for young artistic talent. A selection of Valentine’s smaller forms, such as rings, discs, and double pyramids, which make clear the theoretical basis of his practice, will also be on view.

Wednesday, 1 July 2015

John Hoyland at Newport Street Gallery

A major exhibition of works by John Hoyland (1934–2011) – one of Britain’s leading
abstract painters – will inaugurate Damien Hirst’s Newport Street Gallery in October

‘Power Stations’ (8th October 2015 – 3rd April 2016) consists of paintings by John
Hoyland dating from 1964 to 1982, from Hirst’s collection.
Damien Hirst interviewed by Tim Marlow. Hirst discusses Newport Street Gallery and its inaugural exhibition of John Hoyland. from Newport Street Gallery on Vimeo.

Occupying all six of Newport Street’s individual galleries, entry to the exhibition will be free.‘Power Stations’ will be the first major exhibition to be devoted to the artist since
2006. The show spans a pivotal period in Hoyland’s career, which included his first
solo exhibition in a museum (Whitechapel Gallery, 1967) and, twelve years later, his
defining retrospective at the Serpentine Gallery (1979–80). Having been described
by the writer Mel Gooding as, “without question... one of the two or three best
abstract painters of his generation anywhere in the world”, and by Hirst as, “by far the
greatest British abstract painter”, ‘Power Stations’ both reaffirms Hoyland’s status as
a major innovative force within the field of international abstraction, and provides new
insights into his diverse and ever-evolving work.
Renowned for his bold use of colour and scale, Hoyland was strongly influenced by
the American Abstract Expressionists of the late 1950s and early 60s. He met many
of the most acclaimed of these artists, including Mark Rothko, Barnett Newman,
Robert Motherwell and Helen Frankenthaler, some of whom he became close friends
with. Stating, “paintings are there to be experienced, they are events”, Hoyland’s
extraordinary and intuitive manipulation of colour, form and texture received early
critical acclaim. Although he disliked the term abstraction, he was a life-long
proponent of non-figurative imagery, in which he saw, “the potential for the most
advanced depth of feeling and meaning”. Art critic Andrew Lambirth described
Hoyland’s paintings as, “abstracts but they are not about absolutes. They are about
[…] very particular emotions, thoughts and feelings dependent upon the act of
During his lifetime, Hoyland won many awards including the prestigious John Moores
Painting Prize in 1982 and the Wollaston Award in 1998. As well as his exhibitions at
Whitechapel Gallery and the Serpentine, his work has been the subject of major
retrospectives at the Royal Academy of Arts (1999) and Tate St Ives (2006). In 2010,
it also formed the centrepiece of ‘The Independent Eye’ exhibition at the Yale Center
for British Art (2010–2011). A long-standing, active and outspoken Royal
Academician, Hoyland was appointed Professor of Painting at the Royal Academy
Schools in 1999 and was awarded an Honorary Doctorate by Sheffield Hallam
University in 2000. Throughout a long and successful career, he remained a
committed teacher and lecturer and, like Hirst, a supporter of young and emerging
artists. This will be the first major solo exhibition of Hoyland’s work to have been
shown in London in the last 16 years.
On the significance of the artist, Hirst has stated: “In my eyes, John Hoyland was an
artist who was never afraid to push the boundaries. His paintings always feel like a
massive celebration of life to me.”

Tuesday, 30 June 2015

Damien Hirst's John Hoyland tribute show 'Power Stations' at new London art space, Newport Street Gallery, London

(Paintings 1964–1982)

This show will mark the opening of Newport Street Gallery in Lambeth, south London, a major new space which will be free to the public.

See Damien interviewed below on the forthcoming exhibition of John Hoyland, 'Power Stations' (Paintings 1964-1982) where he discusses the influence he had on Hirst's painting, also how he has the Hoyland painting from the sixties in his office.

Press Release information:
'The paintings are all drawn from Damien Hirst’s art collection – known as the Murderme Collection – and span a particularly important period in Hoyland’s career when he was starting to make a name for himself with his first solo museum show at the Whitechapel Gallery (1967). It also covers the time from the mid-1960s to the early 1970s when Hoyland was first engaging with the New York art scene. Curated by Hirst, the exhibition takes the viewer from the vast colour-field works of the 1960s, through the textured surfaces of the 1970s to the more spatially complex paintings of the early 1980s.
It is the first major exhibition of Hoyland’s work since his death in 2011.'

Further information
8 October, 2015 – 3 April, 2016
Newport Street Gallery, Newport Street, London SE11 6AJ
Opening times: Tuesday – Sunday, 10am–6pm
Admission free

I think its great that Hirst is opening his new gallery with a bold declaration of a painter, a great British painter of the post war years and an abstract painter, and a maverick abstract painter who went against the grain of the stuffy British establishment of the time. 

This will, I am sure, be picked up and discussed in art magazines more abroad, where Hoyland has a more defined reputation, both in Europe and the USA, than in London, a brave decision and Abstraktion applauds it! (see our earlier posts on the Hoyster here and his last interview with Peter in Turps Banana #9. )

Our Pete and the Hoyster
 Also, there is a great interview between Hirst and Hoyland here. Curtesy of Damien Hirst

Damien Hirst's Newport Street Gallery in Lambeth, South London (an artist's impression). Curtesy of Damien Hirst and Science Ltd.

Tuesday, 23 June 2015

Jackson Pollock at Tate Liverpool

Jackson Pollock: Blind Spots
30 June – 18 October 2015
Jackson Pollock: Blind Spots at Tate Liverpool is the first exhibition in more than 30 years to explore the artist’s black pourings, a lesser known but extremely influential part of his practice. The exhibition offers a unique opportunity to see the largest number of Pollock’s black pourings ever assembled in the UK, with some never before seen in this country.
Yellow Islands
This exhibition will take visitors on a journey through the artist’s career, starting with a room featuring a selection of his iconic drip paintings from 1947–49 as an introduction to the black pourings period, 1951–53. Exhibiting works from the peak of the artist’s fame alongside his lesser known work offers viewers the opportunity to appreciate Pollock’s broader ambitions as an artist and better understand the importance of the ‘blind spots’ in his practice.
The exhibition includes a painting from the Empire State Plaza Art Collection.
No 12
 State Office of General Services Commissioner RoAnn Destito said the loan of "Number 12, 1952" fulfills a goal of the state's collection to expose the public to the work of New York artists."
"Number 12" barely survived the 1961 fire at the Executive Mansion, where Gov. Nelson Rockefeller — who bought the painting for his personal collection in 1952 — hung it on the second floor, next to a tapestry version of Picasso's "Guernica."
The heat of the fire — said to be caused by faulty wiring — melted the paint. After initial conservation efforts, the painting was given to the state and put on display in 1974. In 1990, "Number 12" received an extensive overhaul at the Williamstown Art Conservation Center in Massachusetts and was returned to its space at the foot of the Corning Tower in 1991.
Jackson Pollock, 1950 Photograph by Hans NamuthCourtesy Center for Creative Photography

Friday, 19 June 2015

Olga de Amaral's stock is rising.

Olga de Amaral

Artnet's story is about the market value that Colombian textile artist Olga de Amaral is attracting at the age of 83. 
Lienzo Ceremonial II Sothebys
Born in Bogotá, Colombia, Olga de Amaral studied fabric art at the Cranbrook Academy of Art in Michigan. Amaral is a renowned artist whose evolving technique, incorporating fiber, paint, gesso and precious metals transforms two-dimensional textiles into sculptural works that seamlessly integrate art, craft, and design. In their engagement with materials and process her works become essentially unclassifiable and self-reflexively authentic. Amaral is an important figure in the development of post-war Latin American abstraction. Her creation of “off stretcher” works, using non-traditional materials, acquires greater historical resonance with each passing year.Amaral’s work is deeply driven by her exploration of Colombian culture and her own identity. Architecture, mathematics, landscape, and socio-cultural dichotomies in Colombia are woven together through the use of fiber. Understanding and being understood is an important part of her work. Through a complex system based on artisanal technique, she finds answers to inner questions. Her golden surfaces of light thus embody the secrets of her soul.Her use of gold, inspired by the interwoven histories of pre-Hispanic and Colonial art, gives her work a presence at once sensual and otherworldly. In his prologue essay to the book Olga de Amaral: El Manto de la Memoria (2000), Edward-Lucie-Smith comments on the transcendent qualities of her art: "A large part of Olga's production has been concerned with gold, but there are in fact no equivalents for what she makes in Pre-Columbian archaeology. Nevertheless one feels that such objects ought in logic to exist —that she has supplied a lack."

Sol Rojo Doble Sothebys
Sombra Azul Sothebys
Alquimia XIX Sothebys
installation Galerie Agnes Monplaisir

Wednesday, 17 June 2015

Joan Witek ay Jason McCoy

JOAN WITEK: PAINTINGS at Jason McCoy June 17 – July 31, 2015
Joan Witek in her Tribeca studio 1974

I am attracted to black because of the beauty of the color and its infinite ! variety.

It is a color that has been my inspiration since I began painting.

JOAN WITEK: PAINTINGS brings together works from the 1970s to the present, revealing the artist’s impressive unwavering focus. Here, Witek uses fine pencil lines on white ground to define her compositions, before applying black oilstick to establish rich strokes. The latter move vertically, horizontally, or diagonally on the picture plane, employing the invisible grid as the overall structural backbone. Though seemingly graphic when viewed from afar, Witek embraces handmade imperfections that offer rich nuance. In fact, subtle expression is found within each line as thickness and strength of application shifts. It is in these variations within the overall minimal vocabulary that we find traces of emotional undercurrents and a glimpse of the person behind the work.
P161 2013


P139 2007