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Art Dubai 2011 Is Over With Strong Sales & Record Attendance

Art Dubai was presented Under the Patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE, Ruler of Dubai.

Welcoming a total of 81 galleries from 34 countries—with one-third of the participants based in the Middle East, one-third in Europe and one-third in the United States and Asia. This year’s Art Dubai, the first organised under the leadership of Fair Director Antonia Carver, is also the most diverse and forward-looking to date for the Middle East’s largest contemporary art event.

“Dubai has been a trading post and meeting point for South Asia, Iran, the Arab world and Africa for hundreds of years,” said Antonia Carver. “Over the past decade, Dubai has become the commercial art centre of the region and a city of ideas and entrepreneurship, providing homegrown support for artists, exhibitions and galleries. Through the fair and our platforms for dialogue, Art Dubai has been an integral part of this development and while rooted in the region, we are committed to looking to the future and continuing our role as a catalyst linking Asia and the Middle East with the rest of the world.”

Antonia Carver continued, “We aim for Art Dubai to be a fair of discovery – for the international collectors, curators, artists, gallerists and museum groups that attend the fair aiming to catch up on all that’s happening in the Middle East and South Asia, and for those based in the region to engage with the most dynamic of international galleries. At Art Dubai, these audiences will be able to discover the work of more than 500 artists, as presented in booths, installations, performances, dispatches, talks and screenings.”

Showcasing paintings, sculpture, photography, works on paper and video installations from a host of first-timers as well as returning galleries, the fifth edition of Art Dubai features exciting work from emerging artists and museum-quality masterworks. The fair features an ambitious range of galleries, with more than a dozen significant, curatorially focused galleries exhibiting in the Middle East for the first time; an increased number of single-artist gallery shows, allowing viewers to delve into an artist’s practice in depth; and the strongest showing of galleries from Turkey and South Asia to date.

This year also sees the debut of MARKER, a new platform for experimental art spaces from Asia and the Middle East showcasing projects by emerging artists. Curated by Nav Haq, this section includes five dynamic project spaces: Alexandria Contemporary Arts Forum (Alexandria, Egypt), GREY NOISE (Lahore, Pakistan), Liu Ding’s Store (Beijing, China), Makan (Amman, Jordan) and Ruangrupa (Jakarta, Indonesia). Each organisation will present new projects that have been conceived specifically for Art Dubai and that bridge the gap between the commercial and curatorial components of the art fair.

Programming for the fair included Global Art Forum_5, a four-day series of discussions curated by a committee chaired by Shumon Basar, which explored how a changed world has changed audiences for contemporary art, how expectations have affected artists and their work, and how art and fashion collide. The result of a dynamic partnership between Dubai Culture & Arts Authority (Dubai Culture), Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art in Doha, Qatar, Abu Dhabi Authority for Culture & Heritage (ADACH), Ministry of Culture, Kingdom of Bahrain, this year’s forum is the most collaborative yet. Speakers included: Hans Ulrich Olbrist, Co-Director, Exhibitions and Programmes, and Director of International Projects, Serpentine Gallery, London; Francesco Vezzoli, artist; Germano Celant, Director, Fondazione Prada; Sultan Sooud Al Qassemi, Founder, Barjeel Art Foundation; Wassan Al Khudhairi, Director, Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art; and Vasif Kortun,Director of Research and Programs, SALT, Istanbul; Curator, UAE Pavilion for the Venice Biennale 2011. Natascha Sadr Haghighian, this year’s Global Art Forum Artist-in- Residence, responds to the discussions through a bibliographic journey hosted on this website. 2011 also marks the launch of Forum Fellows, a programme that offers a group of young curators and artists from Abu Dhabi, Antakya, Dhaka, Karachi, Jerusalem and Tehran the opportunity to engage with all aspects of the fair.

In addition to the Global Art Forum, Art Dubai hosted a series of talks including On Collecting, focusing on arts patronage; Art Park Talks, which include performances, conversations and practical workshops; and THE BIG IDEA, a dynamic forum for UAE-based artists and designers, organised by Bidoun Projects.

Art Dubai Projects took an observational, almost anthropological approach to the gallery metropolis created by Art Dubai. The rich programme of new works and performances includes painters Ali Chitsaz and Mounira Al Sohl in collaboration with Bassam Ramlawi taking on the theme of ‘labour’ in a live mural; the commissioning of Oraib Toukan to create a new work within the grounds of the fair while Hrair Sarkissian has adapted an existing work that – in its new state – plays with the façade of Madinat Jumeirah; works created by Abbas Akhavan and Shaikha Al Mazrou during the Delfina Foundation’s eight-week residency programme in Bastakiya, with the support of Dubai Culture & Arts Authority (Dubai Culture) and Tashkeel; performative tours of the fair by Malak Helmy and Abhishek Hazra; a bank of radio dispatches from artists’ studios curated by The Island (Victoria Brooks and Andrew Bonacina); and Art Park, a series of films, talks and projects curated by Bidoun Projects that features retrospectives of video artists Wael Shawky and Sherif El-Azma.

The largest and most diverse edition to date, Art Dubai experienced strong sales during its 2011 presentation from 16-19 March and attracted more than 20,000 guests, with a 30 percent increase in international visitors. Underscoring its role as a vital cultural meeting point connecting the Middle East and Asia with the rest of the world, Art Dubai 2011 was attended by curators, collectors, gallerists, artists, museum directors and more than 60 museum groups.

Of the 81 participating galleries, the majority experienced strong sales from the outset with major purchases from international and regional institutions in addition to established and first-time collectors from the Middle East, Europe, Asia and the United States. A number of participating galleries, including Chatterjee & Lal and Chemould Prescott Road (Mumbai), BISCHOFF/WEISS (London), Kalfayan Galleries (Athens /Thessaloniki), Sutton Gallery (Melbourne), Mah Art Gallery (Tehran), AB Gallery (Lucerne/Zurich), Grey Noise (Lahore), Gandhara-art (Hong Kong/Karachi), Pilar Corrias (London), Dirimart (Istanbul), Priska C. Juschka Fine Art (New York) and GALLERY ISABELLE VAN DEN EYNDE (Dubai) among others sold most of their available works at the fair.

“Spring 2011 marks a shift in the cultural life of the Gulf,” said Fair Director Antonia Carver, who is in her inaugural year leading Art Dubai. “Never before has there been such a level of international interest in the arts scenes of the MENASA or such a level of regional support for artists and their projects. Galleries at Art Dubai 2011 reported strong sales and the fair offered an unprecedented level of innovative artists’ projects and educational events, which we feel are part of what makes this fair unique.”

Exhibitors offered positive reports of their experience at the fair, including:

“Art Dubai has been really successful for us,” said Paola Weiss of BISCHOFF/WEISS (London). “I’ve noticed that there is now a solid Middle Eastern collector base, which has grown immensely over the past two years and now stands out to me. In general people seem more interested in collecting. Furthermore, arts patronage has really started to show.”

“We’ve had a great experience here,” said Adrian Turner, Senior Director, Marianne Boesky Gallery (New York). “Everyone seems very warm and inviting and we’ve accomplished more than we’d hoped. We’re coming back.”

“I had a great experience here at Art Dubai and really met a lot of people who are very interested in our work,” said Sappho Ma, Gallery Director, Connoisseur Contemporary (Hong Kong). “And equally important—the fair was satisfying as a human experience; great people, great parties and a great spirit.”

“Despite showing an artist with a proven track record in the region, we were overwhelmed by response both in terms of critical reception and sales,” said Mortimer Chatterjee of Chatterjee & Lal (Mumbai).

This year also saw particularly strong attendance from the more than 400 exhibited artists representing 57 countries, including Diana Al-Hadid, Liu Ding, Shezad Dawood, Hrair Sarkissian, Raafat Ishak, Slavs and Tatars, Timo Nasseri, Oraib Toukan, Wafaa Bilal, Sebastian Lütgert, Farhad Moshiri, Charlie Koolhaas, Natascha Sadr Haghighian, Kamrooz Aram, Nabil Nahas, Abhishek Hazra, Kader Attia, Walid Raad and Nadia Kaabi-Linke.

Coinciding with Sharjah Biennial 10, the fifth edition of Art Dubai was inaugurated by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai. Her Royal Highness Sheikha Manal bint Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum hosted Ladies Day at Art Dubai.

The international art world turned out to Art Dubai 2011 in record numbers, including museum groups and representatives from Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art (Qatar), Qatar Museums Authority, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and Foundation (New York), MoMA (New York), Tate Modern (London), Hong Kong Museum of Art, Museum of Contemporary Art (Sydney), Centre Pompidou (Paris), Sotheby’s Institute, Performa (New York), and Cartier Foundation (Paris).

Art Dubai Live, a new ongoing initiative, launched on 19 March at http://www.artdubailive.ae. All galleries’ booths are represented on the site with interviews filmed throughout the fair. Visitors to the site can also watch footage of the programmes that took place during this year’s physical fair, as well as those in the past.


March 22, 2011 Posted by | Art Exhibitions, Art Fairs, Artists, Museum, News, photography | | 1 Comment

Fresh Paint 4 Art Fair – 5-9 April 2011 in Tel Aviv

Fresh Paint contemporary art fair, Tel Aviv,will be held between 5-9 April in the Botanic Gardens in the southern part of Tel Aviv. The fair provides a meeting-place for art lovers, artists and art professionals,and an opportunity to purchase the work of top contemporary artists.

The fair, which takes place every year at a new, surprising location in Tel Aviv – the beating heart of the Israeli cultural world – brings together all the significant forces of the Israeli art world and enjoys the support of leading international art institutions.

All the leading Israeli galleries will be taking part in Fresh Paint 4, along with The Independent Artists’ Greenhouse which will present the works of dozens of promising up-and-coming artists. The fair will feature a solo exhibition of the work of Nivi Alroy, winner of the Most Promising Artist award for 2010, and present new works of art, installations and video exposed for the first time. Again this year, the fair will initiate and implement a number of artistic community projects including its successful Secret Postcard Project, and will offer enrichment programs featuring video screenings, lectures, discussions with artists and workshops.

The first 5 people who will request an invitation, will get one for the preview day!


March 20, 2011 Posted by | Art Exhibitions, Art Fairs, Artists, News, photography, raw art gallery | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Institute of Contemporary Art Gala Party And Made.com featuring Damien Hirst & Ai WeiWei

The ICA (Institute of Contemporary Art) Gala Party in conjunction with made.com have joined forces in an upcoming event featuring several customized pieces of art work based on utilitarian products. Such well-known artists such as Damien Hirst and Chinese artist Ai WeiWei have come on board to work their personal styles over items such as bicycles. Other artists involved have been given mediums such as Piggy Bags, Arche Lamps, Champion Pro Football Tables and Hollander Bikes for their own interpretation. A full list of artists and information can be seen over at made.com. The preview exhibition will be held from March 23 – 27 at the ICA with a fundraising auction on March 29.

March 20, 2011 Posted by | Art Exhibitions, Art Fairs, Artists, Auction, Design, News, photography, raw art gallery | Leave a comment

“Quentin vs. Coen” Art Show in NYC

Spoke Art presents “Quentin vs. Coen – An art show tribute to the films of Tarantino and the Brothers”, a followup to last yearʼs highly successful “Bad Dads – a tribute to Wes Anderson.” For “Quentin vs. Coen”, Spoke Art has arranged a battle-royal style art show featuring over 100 world class artists from the new contemporary art scene. Painters, screen printers and digital artists were invited to reinterpret their favorite scenes, characters and films from the heralded directors, resulting in an eclectic showing of inspirational fine art. No restrictions were placed on content or subject matter, allowing each artist to chose their personal favorite scenes, films and characters. With over 100 artists, “Quentin vs. Coen” offers a broad range of affordable prints and also fine art works. The show opens on Thursday, April 7 at Bold Hype Gallery in New York City and will be on view until Saturday, April 9, 2011.

March 19, 2011 Posted by | Art Exhibitions, Artists, News, photography, raw art gallery | Leave a comment

Clark Magazine Celebrates Its 47 Issue

French publication Clark Magazine celebrates its 47th issue for March/April 2011. The work of Evan Robarts graces the cover while featured participants include Humberto Leon of Opening Ceremony, young Basque chef Inaki Aizitarte, Cody Hudson and musician Hanni El Khatib, amongst many others. The issue is now available here.

March 19, 2011 Posted by | Art Exhibitions, Artists, Books and Magazines, Design, News, photography, raw art gallery, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Quiksilver releases “Moments” surfing film

Quiksilver releases “Moments”, a 24 minute film starring champion Kelly Slater, Dane Reynolds, Jeremy Flores, Craig Anderson, Clay Marzo and the rest of the global Quiksilver surf team and was filmed in Indonesia, Hawaii, Tahiti, Mexico, Australia, France and Puerto Rico. Moments was shot in full HD using Phantom Gold, Cineflex, Red One and 16mm film cameras and features unique perspectives such as a Phantom helicopter angle at Grajagan in Indonesia, that has never been seen before in a surf film. Moments also uses an artistic approach to explore the individuality and uniqueness of each surfer’s style. Hang Loose!

BTW, Congrats Kelly Slater for winning the Quik Pro Gold Coast 2011!

March 14, 2011 Posted by | News, photography, sports, Surfing | 1 Comment

Museum of Liverpool Opening

The Museum of Liverpool will launch 100 years to the very day that its iconic neighbour the Royal Liver Building opened its doors.

The largest newly-built national museum in Britain for more than a century, the new Museum of Liverpool, will open to the public for the first time on Tuesday 19 July.

One of the world’s leading history museums and a stunning new addition to the city’s famous waterfront, the Museum of Liverpool is the first national museum anywhere in the world that is devoted to the history of a regional city.

Demonstrating Liverpool’s extraordinary contribution to the world, it will showcase popular culture and tackle the social, historical and contemporary issues of the city.

Professor Phil Redmond CBE, chairman of National Museums Liverpool said: “Liverpool’s waterfront is known the world over, and we are pleased that we will soon be welcoming visitors to what is undoubtedly a stunning addition to that World Heritage Site.

“Liverpool’s role in history is also known the world over, as is its iconic symbol, the Liver Bird. It is fitting then that the first purpose-built museum to examine a city’s role in world history, is opening its doors 100 years to the day that the Liver Building itself opened for business.”

Until now, people have found it difficult to grasp the sheer size of the birds that perch on top of what was once the tallest building in Britain. Now visitors to the new Museum in July will be able see for themselves the magnificence of an 18ft life-size Liver Bird, overlooking the Three Graces.

Both the Liver Building and Museum of Liverpool are considered cutting edge architectural designs in their own right. The Museum is the newest symbol of Liverpool’s confidence as a great 21st century city.

Housing more than 6,000 objects, many which have never been on public display before, visitors can unearth an array of stories spanning the Ice Age to the present day.

People will be able to see the stage where John Lennon and Paul McCartney first met, witness the city’s growth into the world’s greatest port, see first hand the last remaining carriage from the famous Liverpool Overhead Railway, and immerse themselves in the city’s rich sporting and creative history.

David Fleming, director of National Museums Liverpool said: “The Museum of Liverpool is all about telling the stories of the city and its people. This includes the times of struggle such as the Toxteth riots, the triumphs of our musical exports including The Beatles, and the dramatic histories of our football teams.

“Every single event has helped shape this city’s personality. The Museum of Liverpool is here to tell the tale, and like the Liver Building, will be around for many years to come.”

The £72m project is continuing apace, and internal fit-out of the major galleries is taking shape to such an extent that the three-phased opening of the Museum has been reduced to just two, with the second phase opening later this year. Discussions regarding plans for the launch day are currently taking place, and will be announced nearer the date.

March 13, 2011 Posted by | Architecture, Art Exhibitions, Artists, Design, Museum, News, photography, raw art gallery | Leave a comment

Annie Leibovitz Exhibition Breaks Museum of Contemporary Art Attendance Records

Annie Leibovitz (American, b. 1949), Patti Smith with her Children, Jackson and Jesse, St. Clair Shores, Michigan 1996. Photograph © Annie Leibovitz.The Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA) announce that its exhibition of works by internationally renowned photographer Annie Leibovitz is now the most popular ticketed exhibition ever presented at the MCA. Just twelve weeks since its opening on 19 November 2010 and only half-way through its run, Annie Leibovitz: A Photographer’s Life 1990–2005 has attracted 95,118 visitors. During the summer period, attendances have peaked at nearly 2,300 people per day. The previous MCA record for a ticketed exhibition was set by Danish artist Olafur Eliasson whose works attracted 63,080 visitors in 2010. MCA also announced that the MCA is extending the exhibition by another month. It will now close on Tuesday 26 April 2011, providing more opportunity for Sydney-siders and interstate visitors to enjoy this moving and inspiring exhibition.

MCA Director Elizabeth Ann Macgregor was delighted to make this announcement in light of the visit to Sydney by Annie Leibovitz. The artist is this week attending a series of media events and a special reception to celebrate the exhibition. 

“We are delighted but not at all surprised by the success of the Annie Leiboivitz exhibition. It has been popular from New York to London, Paris to Berlin and now in Sydney also. She is one of the most celebrated artists of our time and certainly the most influential photographer working today. We are thrilled to have her here with us in Sydney to see the exhibition and celebrate its success,” says Ms. Macgregor.

Annie Leibovitz: A Photographer’s Life 1990–2005 brings together almost 200 images of famous public figures together with personal photographs of her family and close friends over a fifteen-year period. The images project a unified narrative of the artist’s private life against the backdrop of her public image. “I don’t have two lives,” Leibovitz says. “This is one life, and the personal pictures and the assignment work are all part of it.”

Born in Westbury, Connecticut, Annie Leibovitz is the third of six children. She is a third-generation American whose great-grandparents were Russian Jews. Her father’s parents had emigrated from Romania. Her mother, Marilyn Leibovitz, was a modern dance instructor; her father, Sam Leibovitz, was a lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Air Force. The family moved frequently with her father’s duty assignments, and she took her first pictures when he was stationed in the Philippines during the Vietnam War. In high school, she became interested in various artistic endeavours, and began to write and play music. She attended the San Francisco Art Institute, where she studied painting. For several years, she continued to develop her photography skills while working various jobs, including a stint on a kibbutz in Amir, Israel, for several months in 1969. Throughout her life on the Kibbutz, she learned to take Jewish concepts and apply them to her photographs.

Leibovitz had a close romantic relationship with noted writer and essayist Susan Sontag. They met in 1989, when both had already established notability in their careers. Leibovitz has suggested that Sontag mentored her and constructively criticized her work. After Sontag’s death in 2004, published an article about Leibovitz that made reference to her decade-plus relationship with Sontag, stating that “The two first met in the late ’80s, when Leibovitz photographed her for a book jacket. They never lived together, though they each had an apartment within view of the other’s. Neither Leibovitz nor Sontag had ever previously publicly disclosed whether the relationship was familial, a friendship, or sexual in nature. However, when Leibovitz was interviewed for her 2006 book A Photographer’s Life: 1990-2005, she said the book told a number of stories, and that “with Susan, it was a love story.

A major retrospective of Leibovitz’s work was held at the Brooklyn Museum, Oct. 2006 – The retrospective was based on her book, Annie Leibovitz: A Photographer’s Life, 1990–2005, and included many of her professional (celebrity) photographs as well as numerous personal photographs of her family, children, and partner Susan Sontag. This show, which was expanded to include three of the official portraits of Queen Elizabeth II, then went on the road for seven stops. It was on display at the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., from October 2007 to January 2008, and at the Palace of the Legion of Honor in San Francisco from March 2008 to May 2008. In February 2009 the exhibition was moved to Berlin, Germany.

In 2007, the Walt Disney Company hired her to do a series of photographs with celebrities in various roles and scenes for Disney Parks “Year of a Million Dreams” campaign.

At the heart of the exhibition, Leibovitz’s personal photography documents scenes from her life, including the birth and childhood of her three daughters, and vacations, reunions, and rites of passage with her parents, her extended family and close friends. The exhibition also features Leibovitz’s portraits of well-known figures, including actors such as Jamie Foxx, Daniel Day-Lewis, Demi Moore, Scarlett Johansson, Al Pacino, Nicole Kidman and Brad Pitt as well as artists and architects such as Richard Avedon, Brice Marden, Philip Johnson, Chuck Close and Cindy Sherman.

March 13, 2011 Posted by | Art Exhibitions, Artists, Museum, News, photography, raw art gallery | 3 Comments

TED prize winner 2011

TED2011 posted a video of TED Prize winner JR, an anonymous artist who drapes large scale photographic portraits across buildings in poor urban areas. Check it out and Kudos!

TED winner 2011 

March 4, 2011 Posted by | Artists, News, photography, raw art gallery, Tel Aviv - Israel, Uncategorized | 1 Comment

My Favorite Museum in Scotland: The Kelvingrove Art Gallery & Museum in Glasgow

The Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum in Glasgow houses one of Europe’s greatest civic art collections, consisting of almost 10,000 items . Located in the beautiful surroundings of Kelvingrove Park in the city’s West End, the museum sits opposite the architecturally similar Kelvin Hall (which houses the Glasgow Museum of Transport and International Sports Arena) and near to Glasgow University. Loved by locals and tourists alike, the Kelvingrove vies with Edinburgh Castle to be Scotland’s most popular attraction, and is, by some margin, the most visited museum in the United Kingdom outside London. The magnificent red sandstone building was partly financed using the proceeds of the 1888 International Exhibition held in Kelvingrove Park. The gallery was designed by Sir John W. Simpson and E. J. Milner Allen and opened in 1901 as the palace of fine art for the Glasgow International Exhibition held that year. Built in a Spanish Baroque style, the outside facades are constructed from red sandstone from Lochabriggs Quarry near Dumfries (which provided much of the stone for Glasgow’s Victorian-era expansion), the interior uses a much lighter colored sandstone from Giffnock. The buildings facades are adorned with sculptures by George Frampton, Francis Derwent Wood and other contemporary British artists. A popular local myth states that after construction, the architect realized he had built the gallery the wrong way round (with the ‘front’ facing into Kelvingrove park, rather than onto Argyle Street) and consequently threw himself to his death from the roof. Not only were there actually 2 architects, it had always been intended that the building face into the park and the ‘rear’ of the building is so impressive, visitors only realize it is the back when they walk around and view the front. During the 6 month’s of the 1901 Glasgow International Exhibition, 11 million visitors passed through the new building. After the International Exhibition closed, the Kelvingrove reopened in 1902 as Glasgow’s civic museum and art gallery. The museum closed during World War II and its most valuable items were scattered, a fortuitous decision, when a German bomb detonated close by and caused significant damage to the building. The Kelvingrove reopened soon after the war ended and remained massively popular. In 2006, the Kelvingrove reopened after a three year refurbishment program and immediately tripled its visitor numbers to over 3 million in is first full year after reopening, making it the UK’s most visited museum outside London (only the National Gallery, Tate Modern and British Museum receive more visitors). The refurbishment work included opening up the first floor halls, creating new basement display and retail spaces and the complete restoration of the interior stonework. In addition to the galleries, visitors to the museum (which is free to enter) can enjoy its cafes and museum shops. The study centre and library are both open to the public for those who want to discover more about Glasgow’s museums and their collections. The museum hosts over 1.5 million visitors annually. Visit the museum’s website at … http://clyde-valley.com/glasgow/kelvingr.htm

The museum’s collections originally came from the McLellan Galleries and the old Kelvingrove House Museum. Donations and acquisitions over the years have increased the collection, including, most famously, “Christ of St. John of the Cross” by Salvador Dali, purchased direct from the artist by the museum’s then curator in the early 1950s for £8,200, a price considered very high at the time, even though Dali had been bargained down by a third from his original asking price and the sale included copyright to the image. The collections are displayed in 22 state of the art galleries. Amongst the artworks on display are paintings and sculpture from all periods of history, including works by Van Gogh (“Portrait of Alexander Reid” (once thought to have been a self-portrait)), Rembrandt, Botticelli, Turner, Millais, Whistler, Picasso, Monet (“Vetheuil”), Mary Cassatt *”The Sisters”) and L. S. Lowry (“V.E. Day”). Scottish works on display feature influential art from the Glasgow School of the late 19th and early 20th century including George Henry & E. A. Hornel, William Kennedy, Sir James Guthrie and “Motherless” by George Lawson. More contemporary work is also on display including Sophy Cave’s “Floating Heads” (more than 95 disconnected heads showing the whole rage of human expressions) hanging from the ceiling above the museum’s famous pipe-organ and Avril Paton’s “Windows in the West”. The Kelvingrove features more than just art, and amongst the natural history galleries, “Sir Roger” – a stuffed elephant (shot after a hormonal disorder made him extremely aggressive at Glasgow Zoo) – is a favorite with visitors, while a fully restored Spitfire hanging from the ceiling is a highlight of the scientific and technological displays. The decorative arts collection reflects Glasgow’s maritime trading heritage, as well as the expeditions of David Livingstone, with art and artifacts from dozens of cultures all over the world, including ceramics, glass, furniture, silverware, costumes, textiles and metal work. One gallery features a recreation of a Charles Rennie Mackintosh style dining room, emphasizing his importance to the history of art and design in Glasgow. The Kelvingrove is famous for its collection of arms and armor, including the ‘Avant’ armor (the earliest near-complete set of armor in the world, darting from around 1440), William Herbert, first Earl of Pembroke’s complete armor for man and horse (made by the Greenwich Royal Workshop in 1557) and rare medieval Scottish weapons amongst broad displays of European armor and weaponry.

The Kelvingrove has had a long reputation for holding major exhibitions, including the ‘Dead Sea Scrolls’ (1998) and Frank Lloyd Wright (1999) shortly before it’s refurbishment. This tradition has continued since the museum reopened, with temporary exhibitions now held in a the RBS Exhibition Gallery. “Pioneering Painters: The Glasgow Boys 1880-1900” which was on display during 2010 set new records for visitor attendance, and showed 100 oil painting plus 50 works on paper by this influential Glaswegian group. The first exhibition dedicated to the Glasgow School since 1968, a condensed version of this exhibition is currently on view at the Royal Academy of Arts. The next exhibition to open at the Kelvingrove will be “Drawing (on) Riverside: An Exhibition by Patricia Cane”, which opens on April 15th and runs until August 14th 2011. Kelvingrove’s recent exhibition of work inspired by the construction of the Riverside Museum in Glasgow (housing the new museum of travel and transport) featured works by Patricia Cain, a Glasgow lawyer turned artist, who won the Aspect prize (Scotland’s premier prize for painting) in 2010 for her forensically detailed studies of the museum under construction. “Drawing (on) Riverside: An Exhibition by Patricia Cane” will be the artists first major solo exhibition and will draw on the works previously exhibited.

March 2, 2011 Posted by | Architecture, Art Exhibitions, Artists, Museum, News, photography, raw art gallery | 1 Comment