Saturday, September 19, 2020
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V. W. Cooks

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Untitled 2008-11 (the map of the land of feeling). Photo: museum.cornell.edu

Rirkrit Tiravanija – Contemplative Contemporary

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Rirkrit Tiravanija is well known for his conceptual pieces which focus more on the idea than the object itself. For instance, in his exhibition “Pad Thai 1990” we see him serve traditional Thai food and drink as a part of his show encouraging social interaction between people. The smell of cooking and feeding the public are two vital elements for his installations.
Paper Heads, 2019. Photo: Novakart.com

Julian Opie – Trying Out for World Domination

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Filmmaker and digital artist, born in 1958 in London, Julian Opie’s artwork is typically English but in a contemporary pop art way; famous for the cover of Blur’s Best of Album and his portrait of Sir James Dyson, the vacuum cleaner magnate for the National Portrait Gallery.
Poster for the Seville Fair 1966. Photo: aznalfarache

José Álvarez Gámez – The Artist that Doesn’t Exist

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José Álvarez Gámez was a creative visual artist born in 1925 in Spain and died in 1997. This is all we know about the man who created the most prolific and commercial art widely available in Andalusia today. When Gamez was 6 years old Spain was taken over by the general and dictator Francisco Franco. He rose to power during the bloody Spanish Civil War when, with the help of Nazi Germany and Fascist Italy, his Nationalist forces overthrew the democratically elected Second Republic, adopting the title of “El Caudillo”.
The Hikers, 2019. Photo: Hauser & Wirth

Rashid Johnson – The Escape Artist

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Johnson is well known for incorporating a wide range of everyday objects and materials into his work, often reflecting back to his childhood and referencing aspects of his African American heritage; the cultural identity mixed with symbolism he calls appropriated history.
"Yet Another Letter to the Reader" at Fondazione Volume!, Rome, 2017. Photo: Emanuela Scintu

Walid Raad – The Atlas Group: Fact or Fantasy?

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Born in 1967 in East Beirut only eight years before the war in Lebanon broke out, this war and subsequent battles have punctuated Raad’s life and art. Raad, a renowned contemporary media artist gives his views on life through film, photography and multimedia installations. Using his talents to portray the horrific events in Lebanon between 1975 and 1991.
Tan Tan Bo a.k.a Gerotan: Scorched by The Blaze in the Purgatory of Knowledge. Photo: theboard

Takashi Murakami – Mr Super Flat Strikes Again

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Murakami is a geek in his own words; influenced by Japanese animation and American Sci-fi, in particular, Star Wars, manga, anime and a nod to the Edo period and painter Jyakucyu Ito creating the term ‘Super Flat”. 1962 was a great year for art: several artists were born that year, including Murakami, who was born in Tokyo, Japan on the 1st February. He works in fine art but also in commercial art, fashion and merchandise and, of course, animation.
Contemporary Photography

Contemporary photography

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Contemporary photography is a difficult term to define. It does not permanently stick fast as a label on anyone particular image. It is a concept that changes as time periods change and move forward.
Andy Warhol at his studio in 1983. Photo: Brownie Harris, Getty Images

About Contemporary Art

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In its most basic sense, the term contemporary art refers to painting, sculpture, photography, and installation art produced relatively recently, from 1960 onwards; cited to have arrived after modernism. Given that we are premising that contemporary art was born in the 20th century you may be surprised to hear that contemporary art has a long history. In order to trace this and understand its evolution, we must look back into the history of art and comment have given to leading artists at that time.
Artwork in the GAWU series. Photo: WikiCommons

El Anatsui – The Godfather of Recycled Art

El Anatsui is a very clever and gifted artist. No one else can do what he does and make it look that easy. Born in 1944 in Ghana the youngest of 32 children, El Anatsui is the godfather of recycled art.
The Sun, 2000. An Acrylic work on canvas. Photo: nytimes

Yue Minjun – Obsession or self-obsession?

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Yue Minjun has a funny way of expressing himself. Best known as a self-portrait artist, taken to posing in various settings but with only one face,...