William Eggleston’s great achievement in photography can be described in a straightforward way: he captures everyday moments and transforms them into indelible images. William Eggleston: Democratic Camera, Photographs and Video, 1961-2008 presents a comprehensive selection from nearly fifty years of image-making.
Born in 1939 in Sumner, Mississippi, a small town in the Delta region, Eggleston showed an early interest in cameras and audio technology. While studying at various colleges in the South, he purchased his first camera and came across a copy of Henri Cartier-Bresson’s book The Decisive Moment (1952). In the early 1960s, Eggleston married and moved to Memphis, where he has lived ever since. He first worked in black-and-white, but by the end of the decade began photographing primarily in color. Internationally acclaimed and widely traveled, Eggleston has spent the past four decades photographing all around the world, conveying intuitive responses to fleeting configurations of cultural signs and moods as specific expressions of local color. Psychologically complex and casually refined, bordering on kitsch and never conventionally beautiful, these photographs speak principally to the expanse of Eggleston’s imagination and have had a pervasive influence on all aspects of visual culture. By not censoring, rarely editing, and always photographing, Eggleston convinces us of the idea of the democratic camera.
Exhibition: William Eggleston: Democratic Camera Photographs and Video, 1961—2008, Whitney Museum, November 7 – January 25, 2009
The Eggleston Artistic Trust is dedicated to the representation and preservation of the work of William Eggleston.
Recommended reading: William Eggleston’s Guide
The modern home is the perfect venue for displaying tribal art. A recent auction of the collection of Frieda and Milton Rosenthal, at Sotheby’s yielded a very rare and significant sculpture.
This Wooden figure from Easter Island (one of the most remote islands in Polynesia, some 2000 miles from the nearest landmass) representing emaciated, sometimes almost skeletal, men locally called Moai Kavakava are named after moai for the monumental monolithic human figures found on Easter Island and the word kavakava meaning “ribs”. Little is known about their cultural context.
Moai Kavakava are said to represent spirits or ghosts (Aku Aku) as well as deceased ancestors. German Expressionist Max Ernst, was inspired by these figures and their rituals and they can also be found in the collections of the French surrealist André Breton.
Moai Kava Kava, Sold at auction, $ 614,500 USD, at Sotheby’s New York, USA
We love these images that recall the work of the influential photographer and designer, Lazlo Moholy-Nagy in the 1920′s.
Collages, by Alejandro Chavetta
Bruce Munro’s iconic Field of Light sculpture is now installed at the Eden Project in Cornwall. The piece can now be seen on the sloping grass roof of the visitors centre, called the Link building, between the famous Rainforest and Mediterranean Biomes, and will remain there until Spring 2009. The sculpture first came to widespread public attention when a scaled-down version was exhibited in the Pirelli Garden at the V&A in 2004.
Bruce Munro and five assistants worked over three days to install Field of Light at the Eden Project. It is made of 6,000 acrylic stems, through which fibre optic cables run, each crowned with a clear glass sphere.
Field of Light, by Bruce Munro, through Spring 2009, at the Eden Project, Cornwall, UK
When Alexander “Sandy” Calder (1898–1976), arrived in Paris in 1926, he aspired to be a painter; when he left in 1933, he had evolved into the artist we know today: an international figure and defining force in twentieth-century sculpture. In these seven years Calder’s fluid, animating drawn line transformed from two dimensions to three, from ink and paint to wire, and his radical innovations included openform wire caricature portraits, a bestiary of wire animals, his beloved and critically important miniature Circus (1926–31), abstract and figurative sculptures, and his paradigm-shifting “mobiles.”
Exhibition: Alexander Calder: The Paris Years, 1926-1933, at the Whitney Museum October 16, 2008 – February 15, 2009
Goldfish, a polychrome woodcarving about 24cm long
Goldfish, by Yoshimasa Tsuchiya
Friedman Benda Gallery, will unveil the new work of Ron Arad. This new body of work, the artist’s most ambitious to date, propels Arad into previously unexplored sculptural dimension. In a departure both in scale and material sophistication, the artist uses his signature vocabulary of volumetric forms to unexpected and mesmerizing visual effect.
GAM Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art will dedicate an extensive anthological exhibition to the works of Enzo Mari, eminent Italian designer with an intense artistic career since the 1950s, when he stood out as a prominent figure of Programmed and Kinetic Art. In 1963, Mari coordinated the Italian movement called Nuova Tendenza, and in 1965 he organised its participation in the Zagreb Biennial Exhibition. In parallel with his artistic career he worked as a designer, engaged at first in individual formal investigation and subsequently in collaboration projects with various enterprises involved in the fields of graphic design.
Organised in its entirety by the Enzo Mari Studio as “global project” (curatorship, arrangement and catalogue), the exhibition evolves in a chronological order that deliberately makes no distinction between Mari’s artistic production and the objects he designed for industry.
Exhibition: Enzo Mari The Art of Design, October 29 to January 6, 2009 at GAM, Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Turin, Italy
Spend the night at the Guggenheim. Guests can reserve an overnight stay in a Revolving Hotel Room, a work of art created by artist Carsten Höller. Revolving Hotel Room is an art installation comprising three outfitted, superimposed turning glass discs mounted onto a fourth disc that all turn harmoniously at a very slow speed. At night guests can roam the museum alone all night, during the day the hotel room will be on view as part of the Guggenheim’s theanyspacewhatever exhibition.
Over the past few years, Japanese bamboo artists have reached beyond the established boundaries of their craft. New Bamboo is the world’s first exhibition devoted exclusively to Japanese bamboo as a sculptural medium, featuring 23 innovators, old and young, who explore to the full the tension between traditional skill and new expressive opportunities. Ranging from ethereal, computer-designed filigrees, through dramatic wall pieces to angry-looking, dirt-encrusted tangles and anthropomorphic, sexually charged sculptures, the more than 90 works on display demonstrate awesome technique, meticulous attention to detail and extraordinary creativity.
Exhibition: New Bamboo: Contemporary Japanese Masters, Saturday, October 4 – Sunday, January 11, at Japan Society New York, USA