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The large-scale work that Jean Dubuffet never saw and Art News of the Week 31 August – 6 September 2020

Jean Dubuffet. Photo: Courtesy of Pelham
Jean Dubuffet. Photo: Courtesy of Pelham

The organizers of Art Basel Miami Beach have decided to cancel the event until next year. ‘Beyond the Streets’ will launch a new online art fair for December 5th and 6th. The Massachusetts-based deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum have named Sonya Clark as the winner of this year’s $35,000 Rappaport Award. Le Cirque was a work of Jean Dubuffet from 1970 but that he did not finish in the large-scale format during his lifetime.

Art Basel Miami Beach is canceled

September 4, 2020 – Via The New York Times

The Art Basel fair in Miami Beach in December 2018. Photo: Courtesy of Casey Kelbaugh for The New York Times

The state of the pandemic in South Florida is causing concern everywhere in the United States. Because of this, the organizers of Art Basel Miami Beach have decided to cancel the event until next year. This would have been the 19th edition of the art fair that every year attracts important figures from the art world.

Dan Gelber, the mayor of Miami Beach expressed to the media that after discussing the issue with the staff of the fair during the last months, this event that would open in that city during next December has been postponed to December next year. This news came after 39 deaths were reported this week in Miami-Dade County.

The pandemic situation in the State of Florida, existing quarantine regulations, and international travel restrictions have left organizers of the event who are based in Switzerland with no other option. In addition, The Miami Beach Convention Center is being used in the present as a field hospital and a coronavirus testing site.

Dan Gelber also expressed that he has offered not to charge for the rent of the Convention Center due to the financial difficulties of Art Basel after the cancellation of the fairs in Hong Kong and Switzerland. The Miami Beach Convention Center was recently remodeled at a cost of $615 million due to recommendations from the fair itself.

The number of fatalities during the last few days has remained between 20 and 50 within the county, which includes Miami Beach, the city of Miami, and the suburbs of this city. While the art world seems to be coming to life in New York, in Miami the situation remains serious. Despite having improved after the worst of the pandemic during the summer that is ending in the region.

‘Beyond the Streets’ will launch a new online art fair

September 3, 2020 – Via Artnet News

Roger Gastman, curator of “Beyond the Streets”. Photo: Courtesy of Krink Studio.

The art initiative ‘Beyond the Streets’ opened a street art exhibition last year in New York. Next December it will come in the form of a virtual art fair. The event is scheduled for December 5th and 6th and is organized by the curator Roger Gastman in collaboration with the online sales platform NTWRK.

According to its website, Beyond The Streets is “a celebration of society’s most creative misfits, whose impacts are undeniable but often overlooked. By shining a much-needed light on one of the contemporary culture’s most storied movements, BEYOND THE STREETS is the leading voice of, and platform for, mark makers and rule breakers everywhere”.

The first group of artists participating in this online initiative is formed by Felipe Pantone, Mister Cartoon, DABSMYLA, and Kenny Scharf. Works by Rammellzee, the New York artist who died in 2010, will also be available. The works presented by these artists will be of a limited edition. Both artists and visitors will be able to participate in the fair free of charge.

Gastman told Artnet News that “it was an opportunity for artists to create works away from the canvas in a more product-driven space”. Gastman also commented that he has seen “a growing overlap between contemporary art, graffiti, skateboarding, hip-hop, and pop culture audiences”. Products prices at this fair will range from $30 t-shirts to $30,000 paintings. As Gastman said: “All you need is the NTWRK app and you can participate and be entertained, educated and get some cool new shit!”

Sonya Clark Wins 2020 Rappaport Prize

September 03, 2020 – Via ARTFORUM

Reversals (Performance) 2019. Photo: Jessica Kourkounis for The New York Times

Sonya Clark is a professor of art at Amherst College in Amherst, Massachusetts. Her work is among important collections at places like the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Indianapolis Museum of Art, the Boston Museum of Fine Arts, and the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts. The Massachusetts-based deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum has named Sonya as the winner of this year’s $35,000 Rappaport Award.

Sonya performs large-scale installations and performances. She addresses issues of migration, slavery, and white supremacy in her works, using elements such as combs and flags. Sarah Montross, deCordova’s interim art director, and senior curator said, “Sonya Clark’s work deals reflectively and powerfully with aspects of the experience of Black people in the United States, struggling with the relationship between history, social injustice, institutional racism, and racial inequality”.

Sonya said, “The good news of these days is a tender seed that is breaking through the hard concrete. It points to the fertility of hope. The Rappaport Prize, this unexpected recognition, is a green promise, which will help to germinate the creative impulses that my ancestors planted in my DNA long ago. I nurture those seeds, help them flourish by resisting injustice and celebrating my ancestors through my art practice. I am deeply grateful for the support this award provides for this purpose”.

The large-scale work that Jean Dubuffet never saw

September 3, 2020 – Via ARTnews

Jean Dubuffet – Le cirque, 1970. Photo: Courtesy of Pace Gallery

Jean Dubuffet (1901 – 1985) was a French painter and sculptor and one of the most famous post-war artists in Europe. He had an imaginative genius who knew no limits. He was an idealist who embraced the aesthetics of so-called “low art”. He always followed a more authentic and human concept of art, leaving aside the traditional standards of beauty.

He was known for founding the art movement “Art Brut” and the collection of works made by this same movement. Dubuffet presented his work in many exhibitions in France and the United States. His style was marked by rough looking drawing and painting, child figure and abstraction. He was an incessant experimenter who worked with a large number of different materials and forms.

Dubuffet is remembered for his spectacular large-scale sculptures, which adopted organic forms with white bodies and outer lines strongly marked in black. Le Cirque was a work of Jean Dubuffet from 1970 but that he didn’t finish in the large-scale format during his lifetime. From September 18, Pace Gallery will hold a show where a large scale version of this work will be exhibited in its New York gallery. Pace is a contemporary art gallery representing many of the most important international artists and heritage of the 20th and 21st centuries.

According to Oliver Shultz of Pace Gallery, Dubuffet imagined this work to be physically possible 50 years ago. While he was never able to make this work outside of sketches, this work already existed in its definitive form in his mind. The Pace Gallery is proud to bring to the public, from the mind of one of the most important European artists of the 20th century, this piece of art never seen before.

Dubuffet’s story is curious because he didn’t begin his artistic career until the age of 41. Born in France in 1901, he studied painting at the age of 17 at the Académie Julian in Paris but did not devote himself to art until he was removed from the French weather corps. In 1944 Dubuffet held his first solo exhibition at the Galerie René Drouin in Paris and at the Galerie Pierre Matisse in New York in 1947.


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