Starving to Successful


By way of justifying his art college’s lack of business of art courses, the former chair of the fine arts department at Ringling School of Art & Design, once told me that “our faculty are all practicing, exhibiting artists who know very well what it takes to make it in the art world.” Presumably, just the presence of these teaching artists and the example they set would provide their students all the information they needed. However, that claim is difficult to test. Certainly, art faculty don’t lose their jobs if they haven’t had a show or sold a work of art in many years, and no one would want that to be the criteria for evaluating an instructor. Continue reading

Sarah Saunders: Songs of Sanctuary

Sarah Saunders Sculpture

Sarah Saunders, Assembly Line, 2011.

I first encountered the work of Sarah Saunders in the late 1990s when I was the curator at the Confederation Centre Art Gallery in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island. I was fortunate enough to include her in an exhibition of sculptural ceramics, and had the opportunity to write about her work for a catalogue, and then later review her work in magazines. Continue reading

Sculpture at Scenic World 2017 Call for submissions


Louis Pratt, Wonder, 2016. Photo by Keith Maxwell

Sculpture at Scenic World has opened the call for submissions for its 2017 exhibition. It is the most important prize in Australia for an outdoor artwork that in the 2016 edition has been increased up to 20,000 AUD. Located 100 kms from Sydney, the idyllic village of Katoomba is the main destination for all who want to admire the breathtaking views of the rock formation called The Three Sisters in the heart of the Blue Mountains National Park. Scenic World, one of the oldest tourism business in New South Wales, is owned by the Hammon Family – now in their third generation, and siblings Anthea and David have brought fresh air to the company; in the last few years they have been committed to providing a extensive experience to the visitor and, at the same time, contributing to the already vibrant art scene of Katoomba. That’s why five years ago they launched the first exhibition with 26 sculptures and installations in the area of a lush rainforest. Continue reading

Jaume Plensa’s Visual Language

Jaume Plensa Sculpture

Jaume Plensa (Spanish, born 1955), Paula. Bronze, 2013. 276 x 38 5/8 x 100 1/2 in. (701 x 98 x 255 cm) © Jaume Plensa, courtesy Galerie Lelong, New York. Image courtesy of Toledo Museum of Art. Photo by Andrew Weber.

When he was a child, Spanish-born Juame Plensa sometimes furtively hid inside his family’s upright piano.  There, when his father would sit down to play, the sound of the music momentarily became something palpable as the physical vibrations of each note passed through Plensa’s body.  The experience was to have a profound effect on much of his subsequent public art, through which Plensa has always sought to give tangible shape to the ephemeral and the numinous.  Continue reading

Case Work


Dutchess County Estate – Main House site and massing concept study. Acrylic, cast resin, polished brass and charred pine. 24 in x 24 in x 6 in.

There is a shared dream of architecture. A wish that we have, both for architecture, and that we desire to carry out through architecture. In this dream we reshape the world around us like powerful wizards, holding out our hands in front of our bodies and, with mere gestures, cause the landscape to be moved and shaped around us. Rock rises from within the earth, dimples form burning brilliant blisters of crystal and glass into steel and sand, wood grows instantaneous into the deep burnished hues of old-growth, as if we command not only space but time itself. Continue reading

What’s What in a Mirror

Liam Gillick Sculpture

Liam Gillick, Visuo Vestibular Conflict, 2016. All work courtesy of the artist and Kerlin Gallery, Dublin. Image by writer.

It’s impossible to consider “What’s What in a Mirror” as separate from the rest of the gallery. Rather than a self-contained show, it is scattered throughout the Hugh Lane: encroaching upon solo exhibitions by Alan Phelan and Jesse Jones, dotted on landings, and tucked around the corner of the gift shop. Jones’ expansive curtain, dragged between gallery spaces at intervals as a part of NO MORE FUN AND GAMES skirts the piece Agent Relativity neatly and dramatically; Perceived Lightness reflects visitors searching the display racks for their name in Irish. To see all of Gillick’s work necessitates seeing everything here, punctuated by the repeated stool, mirror and table arrangement. Continue reading

Mona Hatoum – Tate Modern

Mona Hatoum Sculpture

Over My Dead Body, 1988. Inkjet on paper. 204 x 304. © Courtesy of the artist.

I first encountered Mona Hatoum’s work in Berlin in 2010 when she was awarded the Käthe Kollwitz Prize by the Akademie der Künste (Academy of Arts). Her large sculptural works with their mix of both delicate and industrial materials was intriguing, and the underlying tension which is often so central to her practice fascinated me. Two years later I was fortunate enough to see her survey “You Are Still Here” at Arter – Space for Art in Istanbul. [1] Here Hatoum’s dense and poetically loaded works were an engaging and perhaps pointed contrast to the largely commercial surroundings on Istiklal Caddesi, the pedestrian avenue visited by as many as three million people during weekends in the popular Turkish city. Continue reading


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