Duton’s Presents Rare Antiquities and Wonders at Asian Art in London

This Sunday 5th November marks the opening of Duton’s third edition of their Appreciation of China exhibition to take place at the Grosvenor House Hotel until 8th November.

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Entitled The Exhibition of Chinese Legacy, the presentation will feature a rare array of ceramic and sculptural masterpieces that have received praise from Chinese and international museums alike. The collections range from painted potteries from the Neolithic period and the Northern Qi Dynasty to Tang Dynasty horses, camels and auspicious beasts.

This key event launching Asian Art in London reflects Duton’s essential role as a platform for authentic and exquisite Chinese art and culture. A rare glimpse into the origin of Chinese art, each artwork on view is certified by Oxford Authentication, with many dating as far back as the old Tang and Song dynasties. The hero piece of the exhibition is a monolithic pair of painted horses, each 90 centimeters in height, the likes of which would be extraordinary to find even in the most prestigious of  institutional collections.

As the first Asian art company to arrive in Europe, Duton’s (est. 1999) is the first and premier Chinese auction house in the UK. Their Chairman, Mr. Du, a leading voice for Chinese art and antiquities, was vastly ahead of his contemporaries with his vision to bridge the longstanding cultural histories of China and Britain.

Against the contemporary backdrop of Asian Art in London, a key event in the British social diary, Duton’s will invigorate these important art objects with renewed cultural relevance. Unique to the location, Grosvenor House Hotel hosted the first ever exhibition of Chinese art in London in 1935. The event is a trusted partner of the Cultural Office of the Chinese Embassy, and will be attended by high profile members of British and Chinese society. Integrating Chinese art into the greater international art community is at the heart of Duton’s mission.

Every picture tells a story: Tomohiro Muda at Fitzrovia Chapel

The Horiuchi Foundation will soon present a series of photographs by Tomohiro Muda as part of an exhibition entitled Icons of Time: Memories of the Tsunami that Struck Japan.
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7.22.2012 Ishinomaki, Miyagi, 2012, Inkjet pigment print. © Tomohiro Muda, by courtesy of the artist
This will be the renowned Japanese photographer’s first exhibition in the UK and appropriately falls on the six year anniversary of the earthquake and tsunami that hit Japan’s northeastern coast on 11 March, 2011. The photographs on view will be shown at the recently restored and reopened Fitzrovia Chapel, a stunning Grade II* listed building which was previously the chapel for the old Middlesex Hospital. The exhibition will also form a satellite event for Photo London fair, which runs at Somerset House from 17 – 21 May and be part of Fitzrovia Photo London Discovery Night, when the participating galleries in the fair will stay open until 8:30pm.

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Celebrating South Asian Art: Interview with Annoushka Hempel, founder of the Colombo Art Biennale

2nd December marks the opening of the much anticipated, 4th annual Colombo Art Biennale (CAB), the world’s largest and most significant celebration of contemporary South Asian art and culture.

Attracting over 2,500 visitors in its last edition, this year’s CAB, which is themed ‘Conceiving Space’ is curated by Alnoor Mitha and seeks to reimagine traditional concepts of the ‘spatial’ in relation to boundaries and engagement. It will focus on emerging talent, including over 60 international and local artists, among them Faiza Butt (UK/Pakistan), Cristina Rodrigues (Portuguese) and Chila Kumari Burman (British/Asian)

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Dr. Priyantha Udagedara
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Abdul Halik Azeez

The event itself, was founded by gallerist and cultural ambassador Annoushka Hempel in 2009, its mission being to raise the profile of artists in this fast developing market. We are so happy to have had the opportunity so speak with Annoushka about the upcoming edition and to have her insight on what is certain to be among the top cultural experiences of the year!

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‘Feeling is Liberty’ – ArtAttack meets The Zhou Brothers

ArtAttack had the honour of interviewing the renowned Chinese contemporary duo The Zhou Brothers during their recent trip to London. We met them at The Langham Hotel to hear more about their lives, artistic practise and future plans.

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The Zhou Brothers are one of the most accomplished contemporary artists in the world today, renowned for their unique collaborative work process. They work together on their paintings, performances, sculptures, and prints, often communicating without words in a so-called dream dialogue. Their thinking, aesthetic, and creativity are a symbiosis of Eastern and Western philosophy, art and literature that informed their development since early childhood.

Sinclair Global, a global luxury marketing consultancy providing bespoke experiences across the spheres of art and culture, fashion, gourmet and lifestyle, invited the world renowned Zhou Brothers to London to collaborate with Louis Vuitton.

A reception took place at The Langham Hotel, welcoming the Zhou Brothers to the inner sanctum of London, before their exclusive event at the secret Louis Vuitton Maison, New Bond Street with an artist talk conducted by Sotheby’s, London.

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Connecting with Nature — Yiming Min’s UK Debut

Renowned Chinese artist, Yiming Min, will make his UK debut next week with a sculpture and painting exhibition entitled ‘Therefore‘ presented by Very Art Space. The show will usher viewers into a machine-made yet natural world including a large-scale installation, sculptures and a suite of oil paintings.

The inspiration for the works is Yiming’s studio in Xiamen, China, which is located within a natural oasis of trees and wildlife, whilst still only 100 metres away from a bustling port city — the juxtaposition between man and nature informs the work. In his own words, Yiming seeks to examine the “coherence of perception between humanity and the natural world.”

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Beyond Inspiration: William Kentridge at Marian Goodman

It’s not often one sees an artwork that is truly unlike any art one has ever experienced in the past, but I can say with certainty that such was the case for me with William Kentridge: More Sweetly Play the Dance at Marian Goodman, London. In fact, the work from which the exhibition borrows its’ title, an 8-screen film piece described by the gallery as ‘dance macabre,’ is perhaps the most inspiring work of art I’ve ever seen, and one that has pleasantly haunted me in the two weeks since I visited the show.

The experience goes something like this: After admiring a series of stunning, mostly black and white, paintings downstairs, which blend Chinese cultural artifacts with images of flowers painted on found paper swimming in Chinese characters, you enter a room, which introduces you to Kentridge’s video art.

William Kentridge at Marian Goodman
William Kentridge at Marian Goodman

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ArtAttack’s ‘Best of Biennale’: India & Pakistan Historically Join Forces for ‘My East is Your West’

When art aficionado, businesswoman, and philanthropist Feroze Gujral – who is of Indian, Arab, and British origins – visited the Venice Biennale in 2013, she noticed there was neither an Indian nor a Pakistani pavilion. With great experience sustaining large-scale arts projects via the Gujral Art Foundation, she decided to change that, and selected internationally recognised artists, Shilpa Gupta (India) and Rashid Rana (Pakistan), to collaborate on ‘My East is Your West.’ The project is an official Collateral Event of the 56th Venice Biennale, and unites at the Biennale for the first time the historically conflicting nations of India and Pakistan. Rana and Gupta have previously collaborated on the cross-border project ‘Aar Paar’, in which artists from Mumbai and Karachi each created public works in the other’s territories.

On view in Venice, Shilpa Gupta’s work, characteristically both poetic and direct in its delivery, reflects on her own experience visiting the borders of Mumbai, Bangladesh and Kashmir, which are partly controlled by India and partly by Pakistan. As a central focus of the work, she stages a performance wherein an actor diligently works away at a crafts table in a dramatically lit red room. Without acknowledging the presence of visitors, the actor traces a shape on carbon paper that rests on a pile of cloth. The cloth itself is significant, measuring the width of a sari and one-thousandth the length of the 3,400km security barrier, the longest in the world, that India is currently building along its’ perimeter with neighbouring Bangladesh. Although open-ended, the piece seemingly alludes to the vast and somewhat arbitrary effort of retaining distance through the gesture of drawing borders.

'My East is Your West,' 2015
‘My East is Your West,’ 2015

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ArtAttack’s ‘Best of Biennale’: Arsenale

After a quick Venezia break to bring you a bit of Central Saint Martins inspiration, we are back on our biennale grind, and ready to share some more of our favourite moments with you. As I mentioned previously, the main venues for this international event are the Giardini, (a beautiful garden dotted with various exhibition halls and country pavilions), and the Arsenale (a complex of former shipyards and armories for which construction began as early as 1104). The latter, perhaps due to its’ age and history, has a very majestic feel to it, and witnessing such a multitude of art within its’ antique walls is truly special.

Like the Giardini, the Arsenale houses both specific country pavilions and a general ‘All the World’s Futures‘ exhibition, showcasing multiple international artists and curated by Okwui Enwezor.

I suppose the major difference between the two spaces is that while the Giardini feels light and airy — no doubt because of its’ outdoor setting — the Arsenale gives off a much more severe vibe, leaving less room for dillydallying and daydreaming, and hence producing, in my view, a more focused and intense experience.

The armory itself also feels endless, with art around every dark corner, and even outside rising from the canal (Chinese artist, Xu Bing‘s ‘Phoenix Project‘ and Brazilian Vik Muniz‘ ‘Lampedusa‘ to name a few). Walking through the exhibition feels something like making one’s way through a maze — you tread carefully so as to not miss anything, and yet you deliberately plough forward too, with the pulsing goal to make it out the other side.

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