‘Buy something you love and would be happy to live with’ – ArtAttack meets Nick Campbell

Over the last few years Nick Campbell has built a reputation as London’s go to consultant for finding artworks under £10,000.

After studying History of Art and Arts Management at Oxford Brookes University, Nick worked at some high-end galleries such as Emmanuel Perrotin, Haunch of Venison, Victoria Miro, White Cube and Christies in New York. Since 2013 Nick has dedicated all of his time to developing Narcissus Arts and it’s sister company, Narcissus Interiors. In 2014 Spears Magazine chose Nick as the UK’s best art consultant under 35.

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Nick Campbell, Founder of Narcissus Arts

I had the chance to speak to Nick about Narcissus Arts and the state of London’s emerging art scene.

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‘I think the sky represents the future’ – Peter Newman at CNB Gallery

Subterranean Blues at Mark Hix‘s CNB Gallery presents an exhibition of new photographs by the acclaimed British artist, Peter Newman.

The show is comprised of eight large-scale works that appear, at first glance, like planets suspended in a pitch-black universe. However, closer inspection reveals them to be depictions of city streets taken from the ground up. Dramatic and mesmerising in equal measure, they form part of Newman’s long-term ‘Metropoly’ project, which connects to earlier serial and typological photography, such as the work of Bernd and Hilla Becher, the German artists who methodically recorded the mechanical structures of the industrial age.

I had the chance to speak with Peter about his artistic practice and forthcoming exhibition.

1. London, St Mary Axe, 2014
Peter Newman, London, St Mary Axe, 2014, C-Type print 122 x 122 cm | © Peter Newman. Courtesy the artist and CNB Gallery

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Markus Karstiess: When Beauty and Abject Bind Together

 

ArtAttack would like to introduce you to renowned German sculptor, Markus KARSTIESS, in anticipation of his second show at Bruce Haines Mayfair opening this week.

The exhibition is comprised of three distinct bodies of work by KARSTIESS.

5. Markus Karstiess, Hannibal Doe, 2009
 Hannibal Doe, 2009. Ceramic, platinum glaze, white gladioli (Gladiolus) H 65 cm. © Markus Karstieß/ VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2015. Courtesy the artist and Bruce Haines Mayfair

 

The first, his signature memento mori (remember that you can die), reminds us of our mortality and the vanity present in a contemporary society based so strongly on appearances. Living in excess within our consumerist society, we think of ourselves as immortal, like the immortal plastic flowers that flourish in our living rooms come rain or come shine. In these works, KARSTIESS brings us back down to earth, and puts emphasis on our mortality through the hopelessness and beauty of nature; he places a flower inside each vase, which is allowed to naturally perish over time. In this way, the artist reminds us that we as human beings are like real flowers not fake ones; we will one day fade and die. The titles of these vases, all borrowed from the ‘Doe family,’ suggest that they stand as a memorial for the unknown dead that have fallen into the oblivion of our ephemeral memory. The artist’s incredible knowledge of the material and techniques allows him to push the boundaries of the clay, making these deformed organic vases simple, yet significantly disturbing.

 

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‘A re-negotiation with Modernism’ – David Ben White at l’étrangère

Inside Outside at  l’étrangère presents a new body of work encompassing painting and sculpture by the British artist, David Ben White.

Absorbed within the language and aspirations of modernist architecture, design and art, White’s paintings and sculptures disrupt the self-enclosed logic of this prescriptive legacy through a subversion of its objects and spaces. For his first exhibition at l’étrangère, White will treat the spaces of the gallery as subjects to be reinterpreted; the homogenous model of the white cube is reformed via signifiers of a familiar, domestic interior. Upon entering the gallery, a constructed environment comprising painting, sculpture and vinyl installation draws the viewer into a re-configuration of the relationship between gallery, artwork and spectator, one that gestures towards an interior design logic.

I had the chance to speak with David about his artistic practice and forthcoming exhibition.

David Ben White, Installation view, 2015 | © David Ben White. Courtesy the artist and l’étrangère
David Ben White, Installation view, 2015 | © David Ben White, Photo: Angelo Plantamura. Courtesy the artist and l’étrangère

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ArtAttack’s Roman Holiday: 3 Favourites from a magical Italian weekend

I find few things more desirable than pasta so traveling to Rome this past weekend, my plan was to eat as much spaghetti as humanly possible. (And so we’re clear, for me that’s A LOT!) Of course Italian coffee, Giolitti gelato and art were also on my Roman menu, and I must say nothing disappointed. I left the Italian capital Sunday night feeling utterly full, and I’m not just talking about my stomach, but culturally as well.

The first art stop on our Roman Holiday was a private tour of the Fondazione Giorgio e Isa de Chirico, a fantastic apartment on the Piazza di Spagna where the artist spent, alongside his wife, the last 30 years of his life, and which now serves as a museum. Of the house itself, Giorgio de Chirico said, “They say that Rome is at the centre of the world and that Piazza di Spagna is in the centre of Rome, therefore, my wife and I, would indeed be living in the centre of the centre of the world, which would be the apex of centrality, and the apogee of anti-eccentricity.”

But aside from the phenomenal location, this is truly a gem of a museum. Of course, it is always especially magical to see an artist’s work within his own home and studio, and the Fondazione is no exception. I fell utterly in love with de Chirico’s oeuvre, discovering his sculpture for the first time as well as his “d’après” paintings, in which he painted in the style of various Renaissance and baroque masters, before he began to dive into the iconic metaphysical art he is now most known for.

Giorgio de Chirico
Giorgio de Chirico
Giorgio di Chirico
Giorgio di Chirico

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Duane Hanson’s Forceful Realism Enthralls Viewers at the Serpentine

Duane Hanson’s lifelike and life-size sculptures come alive in his first survey show in the UK since 1997 on show at Serpentine Sackler Gallery.

In forties and fifties America, Abstract Expressionism ruled. Pop art gave realism a way back in, but even in our own age there is a degree of embarrassment about realism in contemporary art.

The late American realist sculptor Duane Hanson stuck to his guns attempting to re-connect art with everyday life and put the spotlight on a large portion of society that are typically ignored.

During the sixties Hanson’s life-like figures caused widespread controversy shocking viewers with works like Trash (1967); in which a dead baby suffocated with a plastic bag lies within a dustbin amid an umbrella, beer cans and various other outcast items. The latter is the only work displayed from his early period, but is still as shocking as it was nearly half a century ago.

'Trash,' Duane Hanson, 1967
‘Trash,’ Duane Hanson, 1967

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ArtAttack Preview: The traditional become the unsettling at Dadiani Fine Art’s ‘Off Kilter: An Age of Oil’

No form of Fine Art, these days, sounds more traditional to us than painting. Visiting a painting show seems to be one of the safe ways to experience art, at least in the popular imagination; if you’re not one of those convinced by the shock factor of a shark in a tank or someone taking their clothes off in front of you, then the conventions of a beautiful oil-on-canvas may seem far more appealing. A beautifully rendered portrait or landscape – even an abstract form – falls within a certain comfort zone for us. Yet, when subverted or altered even slightly, the medium can be one of the most effective ways of unsettling and surprising. It’s within this subtle relationship between tradition and something more unbalanced that the group show Off Kilter: An Age of Oil, previewing at Dadiani Fine Art on Friday, situates itself. Works by William S. Burroughs, Jennifer Binnie, David Courts, Kelly-Anne Davitt, Robert Hawkins and more all use familiar oil techniques, but at the same time have something off about them. In some cases it’s hard to really pin down;  Burroughs’ work, for example, is dark not just in colour, but you can’t explain just why the forms he’s used make the hairs on the back of your neck prickle. It’s the place where Abstract Art becomes surreal, not just about that pure form.

William Burroughs, Untitled, 1998. Oil paint andmixed media, (dimensions notavailable).
William Burroughs, Untitled, 1998. Oil paint and mixed media, (dimensions not available).

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ArtAttack Interviews Artist Paul Oz on His Ode to the 80’s, Formula 1 & Engineering Past

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Arriving at Imitate Modern’s new space at 90 Piccadilly on Saturday 6th June, I am excited to check out artist Paul Oz’s portraits of the most feared and adored 80’s icons. Assembled for ‘80s KID‘, Paul’s first UK solo show now on view at the gallery, the works are vividly coloured, highly textured and pulsing with an unmistakably 80’s energy.

Set against white walls, Maggie Thatcher catches my attention first, her deep-set eyes seeming to call me up the long staircase, with that signature Maggie flair, a combination of traditional British elegance coupled with a gentle gaze and slightly pursed lips.

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