Pope.L, My Kingdom for a Title, Courtney Willis Blair (Ed.)

Posted in art, Artist Book, books on August 13th, 2021
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My Kingdom for a Title is a collection of writing by Chicago–based artist Pope.L documenting his use of language as a mode of visual, narrative, and performative story telling.

The act of writing has been integral to how Pope.L works and is arguably the most consistent element in his practice. These works take various forms: scripts, short stories, scribbled notes, large scale installation, and painting—many never before released. Assembled here for the first time, My Kingdom for a Title allows the breadth of the artist’s engagement with language to be fully assessed. Within the book, Pope.L’s work is supplemented with extensive endnotes sourced by artist Kandis Williams.

Pope.L is a visual artist and edu­cator whose multidisciplinary practice uses binaries, contraries, and preconceived notions embedded within contemporary culture to create artworks in various formats including writing, painting, performance, installation, video, and sculpture. Building upon his long history of enacting arduous, provocative, absurdist performances and interventions in public spaces, Pope.L applies some of the same social, formal, and performative strategies to his interests in language, system, gender, race, and community. The goals for his work are several: joy, money, and uncertainty—not necessarily in that order.

Edited by Courtney Willis Blair
Endnotes by Kandis Williams
Co-published by Mitchell-Innes & Nash

First Edition (2021)

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Lemaniana: Reflections on Other Scenes, Andrea Bellini (Ed.)

Posted in art, books, exhibition catalogue, Motto Books on August 13th, 2021
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Lemaniana: Reflections on Other Scenes is the catalogue of a collective exhibition at the Centre d’Art Contemporain Genève celebrating the diversity of the contemporary artistic production in the Léman region.
The exhibition is the result of a call for projects, launched in autumn 2020, based on an open conception of the territory, with the aim of bringing together artists of different background who are either temporarily or permanently linked to the cross-border region of the Lake Léman basin, irrespective of training or education.
Rich in illustrations and texts, the catalogue allows us to navigate through the universe of nearly 60 artists, including artist duo and collectives, bringing to light new connections and opening our gaze to fresh interpretations of the world – a world deeply shaken by recent events. Current news – whether we are talking about racism, divergent political powers, gender identity or the pandemic and its confinements – give the project a truly contemporary nature.

Edited by Andrea Bellini.
With essays by Mohamed Almusibli, Andrea Bellini, Roxane Bovet, Patrick de Rham, Jill Gasparina and Stéphanie Moisdon.
Artists: Sonja Aboussouan, Mathilde Agius, Jérôme Baccaglio, Lucas Ballester & Oélia Gouret, James Bantone, Jacopo Belloni, Mabe Bethônico, Yann Stéphane Biscaut, Aurélie Blanchette Dubois, Vivia Braitano, Francesco Cagnin & Lorenza Longhi, Loucia Carlier, Stefania Carlotti, Salomé Chatriot, Adrien Chevalley, Alfredo Coloma, Jeremy Dafflon, Francesco De Bernardi, Caterina De Nicola, Azize Ferizi, Félix Gagliardi, Louisa Gagliardi, Annabelle Galland, Gabriele Garavaglia & Miriam Laura Leonardi, Virginia Garra, Elisa Gleize, Deborah Joyce Holman, Lauren Huret, Inner Light, Luc Joly, Kayije Kagame, Monika Emmanuelle Kazi, Shiva Khosravi, Quentin Lannes, Shuang Li, Hunter Longe,  Soraya Lutangu & Ali-Eddine Abdelkhalek, Evariste Maïga, Lucia Martinez Garcia, Lou Masduraud, Lamya Moussa, Johanna Odersky, Valentina Parati, Leonardo Pellicanò, Jessy Razafimandimby, Real Madrid, Anouk Reichenbach, Delphine Reist, Diane Rivoire, Christian Schulz, Rose Siebke Winckler, Terat Thanaworrawatniti, Ambroise Tièche, Remy Ugarte Vallejos, Marco Walpen, Sarah Watson and Mayara Yamada.

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Enough Is Definitely Enough, Andrew Bracey

Posted in art, Artist Book on August 12th, 2021
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Painted in 1656 by Diego Velázquez, Las Meninas is one of the most revered and innovative artworks in history. Widely discussed, debated and critiqued, it has inspired artists, writers and filmmakers for centuries.

Just when you thought there was nothing more left to say about the painting, artist, curator and lecturer Andrew Bracey asked sixty-two contemporary artists to interpret the artwork. Well, almost. The painting itself never leaves the world-famous Museo del Prado in Madrid, so he distributed a postcard of Las Meninas to respond to in place of Velázquez’s original.

Bracey’s perceptive and engaging writing brings Las Meninas to life in new ways through the interpretation of these contemporary artworks, which range from the witty and the cosmic through to the conceptual and intuitive.

Exploring themes including ‘close looking’, time, mirroring, the meta and the complex, and associative thinking, this book demonstrates how an artist’s interpretation of an artwork can offer a host of new perspectives.

Enough Is Definitely Enough introduces the relative art novice to the links between contemporary art practice and art history, while allowing the expert to find alternative ways of looking at one of the world’s greatest paintings.

1st Edition Paperback, 2021

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Niza Guy / Bifurcated, Mitchell Syrop

Posted in art, Artist Book, typography on July 27th, 2021
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Niza Guy / Bifurcated presents two text works by Mitchell Syrop. Each one follows the flow of an internal monologue from fatalistic to comic to mundane. Syrop’s idiosyncratic use of language and apparent stream-of-consciousness writing contrast with a rhythmic cadence he invokes through structural formulas and tactical page breaks. Viewed in succession, the two texts set up a dialectical tension between the artist’s public and private personas to produce a hypnotic self-portrait that is at once familiar and subjective.

Edition of 400

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METAPHOR. PROTEST. CONCEPT, Iulia Popovici, Raluca Voinea (Eds.)

Posted in art, books, performance, Theory, writing on July 24th, 2021
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PERFORMANCE ART FROM ROMANIA AND MOLDOVA

Interviews with: Iulia Popovici & Raluca Voinea, Dan Perjovschi, Szilard Miklos, Matei Bejenaru, Pavel Braila, Farid Fairuz, Anca Benera & Arnold Estefan, Nicoleta Esinencu, Alexandra Pirici, Veda Popovici, Candidatura la Presedintie, Paul Dunca, Ioana Paun, Simona Dumitriu & Ramona Dima, Florin Flueras & Alina Popa.

„The diversity of performance art forms in Romania and the Republic of Moldova speaks about distinct motivations, personal and artistic, in the opinion for this language, but also about the mode in which an art gets to build its own definitions, in specific contexts. There are these definitions that we are searching, through the dialogues with artists, in the present book.”
(Iulia Popovici)

„These days we don’t find each other so much in the street; we don’t find ourselves in the political or aesthetical programme of the recent protests or we simply wait that they generate other metaphors and other concepts, for a new generation of artists (and citizens).”
(Raluca Voinea)

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The Blow-Up Regime, Marc Bauer, Berlinische Galerie (Eds.)

Posted in art, Artist Book, illustration on July 21st, 2021
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Drawings as Artistic Research

Marc Bauer (b. Geneva, 1975; lives and works in Berlin) is the winner of the 2020 GASAG Art Prize. Working in the medium of drawing, he grapples with themes such as migration, identity, and gender and articulates a critique of the new media or the nexus between religion and violence. Building on extensive research, the artist develops sprawling installations encompassing intimate works on paper, wall drawings, animations, and sound. A suggestive dramaturgy emerges that intertwines historic events and fictions and remains open to a range of interpretations. For his exhibition at the Berlinische Galerie, Marc Bauer has conceived a broad-based inquiry into the history of the Internet and its impact on society and the individual.

The accompanying catalogue presents the entire installation in detail. With texts by Guido Faßbender, Thomas Köhler, Thomas Kuratli / Pyrit, and a conversation between Sibylle Berg and Marc Bauer as well as interviews with Alan Emtage and Luca Maria Gambardella. A greeting was written by Gerhard Holtmeier.

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Terraforma Journal – Issue #1

Posted in art, magazines, music, writing on July 17th, 2021
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The Terraforma Journal is a new editorial project by Terraforma. A biannual publication exploring the intersection of sound, art, ecology and culture at large. Issue #1 focuses on the expanded notion of the festival—intended as a collective, multi-lateral, interconnected manifestation of dynamicity. The theme unfolds through a multiplicity of layers to acquire new and unexpected definitions. Terre Thaemlitz, Fabio Sargentini, Shiraz Arts Festival, Beuys 2021, Alice Bucknell, Angela Rui, 2050.plus — among many others — explore this angle and translate their vision into the printed matter. Every issue of the Terraforma Journal features a specially commissioned cover, starting with a labyrinthine interpretation of Daniel Sansavini and Studio Temp.

Terraforma Journal is an expansion towards a renovated feeling of togetherness and exchange.

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Joachim Perez. désirer, ne pas voir @ Motto Berlin. 16.07 – 07.08.2021

Posted in art, exhibitions, Motto Berlin event on July 16th, 2021
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Joachim Perez | Marc Bauer @ Motto Berlin | Thursday 15 July 2021

Posted in art, events, exhibitions, Motto Berlin store on July 10th, 2021
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désirer, ne pas voir

Joachim Perez

Opening on Thursday 15 July, from 6 pm @ Motto Berlin

Men have always depicted naked women. Joachim Perez took this observation as a starting point,  appropriating a medium codified as feminine — embroidery — to depict male bodies. Working primarily with sewing and embroideries, he began to create large-scale installations that explore masculinity and sexuality in a defined space.

Following his residency at the Musée Jenisch (Vevey, Switzerland), where the classicism of the paintings in the permanent collection clashed with the elasticity of his works, Perez presents a new series of embroideries at Motto, this time on tarpaulin. Limited to the gallery’s glass cabinets, his embroideries stress a back and forth in his practice between the male body displayed in an unaffected manner and the constraints imposed by the space in which it is exhibited. Indeed, Perez’s works speak of our gaze, tensions and the internal dialogue that results from the tendency to both desire and reject eroticism.The partial unveiling of the works engages the visitor to develop a narrative aroused by the latent violence of bodies kept in glass cages.

Stick Your Finger – a Recollection by Marc Bauer

Stick Your Finger – a Recollection

Marc Bauer

Opening on Thursday 15 July, from 6 pm @ Motto Berlin

Another Mobile Gallery is pleased to invite you to Marc Bauer’s exhibition entitled Stick Your Finger – a Recollection which will take place on the 15th of July, hosted by Motto Berlin. Summoning the public to a meditation on the body and the sense of touch, the artist has put together 12 works to express difficult themes such as sexuality and the implied dichotomy of care and abuse, blended with his own personal experiences and memories as a teenager in the 1980s. The artworks will not be displayed in a traditional format, but will be shown as part of a collaborative performance where the public will interact directly, as an homage to the recent reality of the pandemic and the restrictions universally faced for the past year and a half.

Another Mobile Gallery is a dynamic, alternative space thought out as a stand-in for the usual contemporary art gallery. Starting out in the shape of a van, AMG isn’t currently tied to a physical space but it continues with the main purpose of providing pop-up shows which can take place anywhere in the world. Born out of pure passion by making use of minimal resources, this project continues to ensure the promotion of young, up-and-coming artists as well as established creators, while presenting them with the same challenge faced by AMG’s owner in the first place: create something extraordinary from little to nothing; the sky is the limit.

The View From “No Man’s Land”, Firas Shehadeh

Posted in art, Artist Book, books, meme, politics on July 10th, 2021
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“Since 2013, Firas Shehadeh’s conceptual practice has been preoccupied with understanding the human condition through post-internet aesthetics, a tactic calculated towards a larger strategy of tackling the many themes mirrored by our new millennia. The internet and its cultures, video games, virtual communities, and various types of images are key mediums in his work, which helps the artist avoid material limitations and highlights the impact internet life is increasingly having on our offline lives.

Yet if one can trace a unity in Shehadeh’s work, one would find that it’s mainly concerned with images, not purely as form, but for what it absorbs from today’s political realities, conveyed by way of not-so-innocent silliness or abstraction. That is not to say that he deals with images as if they are inherently political. On the contrary, as a puppeteer controlling his marionettes with agility, Shehadeh takes such images and carefully reassembles them in front of us to subtly narrate their stories of origin and the meaning they evolved to carry. By relying on a combination of irony, tragedy, and delicate hopefulness, he ultimately highlights the bitter contradictions of today’s world.

One can easily detect some of Shehadeh’s political interests: history, technology, and aesthetics. He connects all these in today’s Online, the direct descendant from yesterday’s internet. Today’s algorithmically-driven Online is akin to predestination, loaded with ready-made scenarios where you’re trapped in a time loop like a sick joke. Original moves are calculated, preconfigured, and repeated every day; a Punxsutawney-hell from hell where one disaster leads to another. Still, they’re expected, welcomed, normalized, in a made-up history where irony’s reserve has drained to the very last drop.

In The View from “No-Man’s Land,” Shehadeh documents the year 2020 by using online culture’s main currency—memes—to tell stories of crashes, depressions, and violence caused by acceleration and the hyper technologies of control. His position as a Palestinian artist permits him to tell such stories with ease and cleverness. Yet unlike his subjects, he doesn’t convey a post-ironic attitude; his awareness is a tool to decipher post-irony, exposing its contradictions as if fighting fire with fire. That is highlighted best in the book’s cover; a kite strapped with a Molotov cocktail. The contra-drone of the oppressed. A direct, ironic answer to the oppressor’s hyper-tech arsenal.

This book and its artifacts function as a memory theater for an era that doesn’t want to leave, trying to outwit us by employing elements from the past. All the versos and rectos speak of the same story, reiterating after Carl “CJ” Johnson, its undeclared Angelus Novus, “Oh shit, here we go again.””

– Yazan S. Ashqar
Writer, Editor, and Translator, New York City

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