a tale of a few cities

5,000 Free Limited Edition Artworks To Celebrate Elmgreen & Dragset’s Trafalgar Square Sculpture Unveiling

Posted in Art, artists, collecting, collections, limited editions, multiples, pictures, Public Art, Sculpture by petercombe on February 23, 2012

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LONDON, Feb. 23, 2012 —  In collaboration with s[edition], a digital platform for collecting contemporary art, Elmgreen & Dragset invite visitors to experience ‘Powerless Structures, Fig. 101’, the Fourth Plinth in London’s Trafalgar Square in the virtual world using augmented reality.

For the first time, visitors can further engage with the Fourth Plinth commission, which is funded by the Mayor of London with support from Arts Council England. They will be able to access exclusive content via the s[edition] iPhone app. When devices are pointed at the sculpture’s plaque, users will receive a three-dimensional rendering of the sculpture, along with unique footage of Elmgreen & Dragset presenting their work.

The artists have also collaborated with s[edition] to create a digital limited edition artwork celebrating the commissioned sculptureDesigned to be viewed on digital devices from iPhones to televisions, the limited edition features a unique digital rendition of the bronze sculpture on the plinth. To commemorate the unveiling, s[edition] will offer members of the public the chance to own one of 5,000 limited editions, worth £35 each ($55US), for free before 5pm GMT on Friday 24 February 2012.  The editions are limited to one per person and can be accessed via here.

Michael Elmgreen said: “The internet has created possibilities for experiencing artworks in a totally different way. You do not need to be there in a physical sense at the location to actually get an impression of the work. So it broadens the possibilities to reach other audiences apart from the people in Trafalgar Square.”

Ingar Dragset stated: “When we developed the sculpture itself in a 3D format, we used the computer as well as a tool. It is a big part of most artists’ working process. What you see with our s[edition] limited edition is the computer manipulated sculpture turning around, with the blue sky in the background, and it loops endlessly.”

Martina King, Managing Director of Aurasma, said: “This ground breaking collaboration with s[edition] brings digital art to 3D life, augmented into the real world.  People will be able to use the simple tools in the app to add a 3D model of the artwork to their homes, offices gardens – even the street.  We’re delighted to see Aurasma’s unique technology being used to change the way people see and interact with art using their mobile devices.”

Commissioned by the Mayor of London and supported by the Arts Council England, Elmgreen & Dragset’s new sculpture for the Fourth Plinth was unveiled on 23 February 2012 in Trafalgar Square, London. Entitled Powerless Structures, Fig 101, the artwork features a 4.1m high golden bronze sculpture portraying a boy on a rocking horse with his right arm thrust high in the air.

Available for iPhone and Android smartphones, Aurasma uses advanced image and pattern recognition technology to seamlessly blend the real world with interactive digital content called “Auras”.  Auras can be created for images, objects and physical places. Users can even use the simple tools in the app to create and add their own Auras to the world. A 3D version of Powerless Structures, Fig 101 will be available on the Aurasma platform for users to place into the real world, view and share.

The Sacramento Bee

Thursday, February 23, 2012
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UPDATE, February 24, 2012: As it is now past 5pm GMT on Friday 24 February 2012 Limited edition art work is now priced at $56USD.
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Elmgreen & Dragset’s Powerless Structures, Fig. 101 Unveiled

Posted in architecture, Art, artists, Installation, Photography, pictures, Public Art, Sculpture by petercombe on February 23, 2012

Artist duo Elmgreen & Dragset have become the latest contemporary artists to unveil a public sculpture on Trafalgar Square’s Fourth Plinth. ‘Powerless Structures, Fig. 101’ depicts a classically proportioned young boy atop a flat rocking horse.

The plinth, built in 1841, was originally designed to host a bronze equestrian statue of King William IV designed by architect Sir Charles Barry.  Organisers said that, after 170 years, “Elmgreen & Dragset have completed the process by presenting a new take on the tradition of equestrian statues, directly engaging with the history of the plinth itself”.

Michael Elmgreen (Denmark) and Ingar Dragset (Norway) are a collaborative artist couple who live and work together in Berlin. Their work often takes the form of a wittily subversive intervention or mise-en-scène. They are critical of contemporary art institutions, and restrictive viewing of the white cube viewing space. The duo have held solo exhibitions at galleries including the Serpentine and Tate Modern, in London, and The Power Plant, in Toronto.  As a duo, the artists – who will exhibit at London’s Victoria and Albert Museum in autumn 2013 – are known for works including Prada Marfa, a full-scale replica of a Prada boutique in the middle of the Texan desert.  

Although I like Elmgreen & Dragset’s work, I wish Jennifer Allora and Guillermo Calzadilla’s proposal had been chosen. Their’s featured a working cash machine embedded within the plinth which, when accessed, would have triggered a functioning pipe organ set on top of the plinth, to play throughout Trafalgar Square.

Elmgreen & Dragset’s Powerless Structures, Fig 101, replaces Yinka Shonibare’s large-scale Nelson’s Ship In A Bottle.

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[youtube http://youtu.be/watch?v=dLGj7lxwjNk&w=720&h=450]

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Elmgreen & Dragset’s Fourth Plinth

Posted in Art, artists, Installation, London, Photography, pictures, Public Art by petercombe on February 22, 2012

The unveiling of London’s Fourth Plinth, Powerless Structures, Fig 101‘ by Scandinavian artistic duo Elmgreen & Dragset starts tomorrow at 9:00am (GMT), in Trafalgar Square.

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Philippe Parreno, For Eleven Months of the Year it’s An Artwork and in December it’s Christmas

Posted in Art, artists, pictures, Post Modernism, Sculpture by petercombe on December 24, 2011
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Philippe Parreno
For Eleven Months of the Year it’s An Artwork and in December it’s Christmas, 2009
Cast and painted aluminium, glitter & bronze, 130 x 130 cm

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Christo, Over the River

Christo, moments after I asked whether anybody had ever called him the first wrap artist. Tate Britain, 14.09.2011

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Christo, Over the River (Project for Arkansas River, State of Colorado), Drawing 2010 in two parts, 15 x 96″ and 42 x 96″ (38 x 244 cm and 106.6 x 244 cm), Pencil, pastel, charcoal, wax crayon, enamel paint, wash, fabric sample, hand-drawn topographic map and technical data (Photo: André Grossmann) © 2010 Christo

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Federal regulators on Monday approved a $50 million installation of anchored fabric over the Arkansas River in southern Colorado by the artist Christo, whose larger-than-life vision has divided environmentalists, residents and politicians for years over questions of aesthetics, nature and economic impact.

The project, “Over the River,” will include eight suspended panel segments totaling 5.9 miles along a 42-mile stretch of the river, about three hours southwest of Denver. Construction could begin next year, pending final local approvals, with the goal being a two-week display of the work as early as August 2014.

Christo’s projects — from the wrapping of the Reichstag Parliament building in Berlin in 1995 to “The Gates,” a meandering path of orange awnings through Central Park in New York in 2005 — have often generated heated debate in advance of their creation.

“We are elated,” Christo said. “Every artist in the world likes his or her work to make people think. Imagine how many people were thinking, how many professionals were thinking and writing in preparing that environmental impact statement.” [NYTimes]

This past September, Christo gave a rare talk in London about two works in progress, Over the River, Project for the Arkansas River, State of Colorado and The Mastaba, Project for the United Arab Emirates. He talked about the concepts behind these two artworks, and the significant process of production and realisation when working on large-scale environmental artworks. I was lucky enough to be sitting in the 2nd row center, it just so happened that he sat directly in front of me narrating while slides of his projects were projected on stage. He spoke much about the Over the River project but I was most intrigued by The Mastaba project (a monumental artwork, set in the Abu Dhabi desert, to be made of approximately 410,000 horizontally stacked oil barrels). I had always thought The Mastaba had been abandoned so was delighted to hear that it is an artwork still in preparatory stages.

During question time I asked how one might volunteer to work on one of his projects (48:55). He immediately pointed out that everybody working on his projects is paid since you could not fire volunteers. Jeanne-Claude (his now deceased wife), made sure that laboring help was paid 25% above minimum wage. I was amazed at Christo’s energy and level of enthusiasm, being that he is 76 years old.

Artist’s Talk: Christo, Tate Britain, Wednesday 14 September 2011
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The London Open

Posted in Art, Artist call, artists, contests, Exhibitions, London by petercombe on October 20, 2011

The London Open is a snapshot of the latest art from London in 2012. This new incarnation of the Whitechapel Gallery’s triennial open submission exhibition is open to all artists aged 26 or over living and working in the London postal district (i.e. N, NW, SW, SE, W, WC, E and EC postcodes). The first edition of The London Open is selected by writer Patricia Bickers, artist Rodney Graham, collector Jack Kirkland, curator Marta Kuzma and Kirsty Ogg, curator, Whitechapel Gallery.

For the Application Form you will need:

– Your personal details (name, address, email address, telephone number, date of birth);
– A one page A4 CV set in minimum type font 10;
– Your 500 word personal statement;
– Up to 5 examples of your practice in the form of images, web-links or a combination of both (plus details – title, medium, dimensions/duration, date);
– £25 application fee.

Open for submissions
3 October-25 November 2011

Exhibition
4 July-14 September 2012

Image: Design by The 2 Group 2011

Click here to apply now.

Currently, I am in London

Peter Combe, London Bridge, T, 2011

Christo talk @ Tate Britain

Posted in Art, artists, Collage, Conceptual Art, environmental art, London, Sculpture, Work on Paper by petercombe on August 17, 2011

Christo, The Mastaba in comparison to the Great Pyramid of Giza (Pyramid of Cheops), Egypt

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I’ve booked my ticket to see Christo talk at Tate Britain. Secretly, I’d love a months long gig working on the team with Christo.

New York-based environmental artist Christo gives a rare talk in London about two works in progress, Over the River, Project for the Arkansas River, State of Colorado and The Mastaba, Project for the United Arab Emirates. Christo is renowned for his often controversial public artworks carried out with his late partner Jeanne-Claude. These include the monumental wrapping of the Reichstag in Berlin and the Pont Neuf in Paris, the 24-mile long Running Fence in California, and most recently, The Gates in New York City’s Central Park.

For Over the River, initially conceptualised in 1992, Christo plans to suspend nearly six miles of silvery, luminous fabric panels high above the Arkansas River, along a 42-mile stretch between Salida and Cañon City in south-central Colorado.

The Mastaba has been in development from 1977. This monumental artwork, set in the Abu Dhabi desert, will be made of approximately 410,000 horizontally stacked oil barrels.

In this lecture Christo, who has generously contributed his time, will talk about the concepts behind these two artworks, and the significant process of production and realisation when working on large-scale environmental artworks.

Wednesday 14 September 2011, 18.30–20.00
Tate Britain  Auditorium
£12 (£9 concessions), booking recommended
For tickets book online
or call 020 7887 8888.

Ai Weiwei and the Five Finger Discount

Posted in appropriation, Art, auction, China, Conceptual Art, illustration, London, Painting, Sculpture by petercombe on July 19, 2011

Detail of Ai Wei Wei sunflower seeds from the Tate Modern in London

For the eleventh commission in the Tate Modern‘s Unilever Series, Chinese conceptual artist Ai Weiwei had filled the museum’s Turbine Hall with millions of life-sized sunflower seed husks made out of porcelain. The collective effort of a number of specialists from Jingdezhen, China, the hand-crafted seeds were individually formed and painted. Before the museum was alerted to the installation’s dangers of lead paint and silica dust, visitors were encouraged to touch and walk on the carpet of tiny replicates. Before a barrier was erected around the perimeter of the installation, I wondered how many visitors were tempted to pilfer samples of the tiny seeds (see photo above). In February of this year Sotheby’s Contemporary Art Evening sale in London surpassed the $192,000 estimate, netting $559,394 for a 100-kilogram pile of Weiwei’s seeds. That puts worth of the stolen seeds pictured above at about $33.60.

Raven Row, Gone With The Wind

Posted in Art, artists, Conceptual Art, Group Show, London, Photography, Sculpture, silkscreen, sound art by petercombe on June 30, 2011

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top right, Walter Marchetti, Musica da Camera N° 182, 1989/2011 (photo by Fabrizio Garghetti)
middle, Opening night viewers take in Takehisa Kosugi’s Ear Drum Event, 1962/75 (photo Mandy Williams)
bottom left, Mandy Williams, Lost voices, 2010, Audio installation
bottom right, Walter Marchetti, Musica da camera N° 211, 1990/2011 (photo Rupix)
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Gone With The Wind is curated by Ed Baxter, director of Resonance104.4fm. The London art radio station took its quarters at Raven Row for the duration of the exhibition, broadcasting, and hosting workshops and live events, as well as presenting an ‘overhung’ sound installation – the ‘Resonance Open’ – with contributions solicited from local and international sound artists.

Gone with the Wind remains open until 17 July 2011 at the Raven Row gallery in London.

In-depth Review >

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