For the September/October issue of ArtAsiaPacific, we look at artists who extend the vocabulary of their given practices—through the use of a specific material or by adopting a range of strategies and styles, both old and new—to communicate their ideas, often in novel, unexpected ways.
Any reader of lifestyle-oriented art magazines is familiar with the topos of the collector interview. Proudly posed amid a smattering of treasures, the collector tells tales of provenance and pedigree, impulse and addiction, sudden chance and shrewd pursuit through art world haunts dotted with cameos by complicit dealers, affable advisors and artists who have become fast friends.
Just off Istanbul’s central Taksim Square, at the top of the street that curves down toward the Dolmabahçe Palace, is a small space with two glass walls facing the street.
Without question one of Aotearoa New Zealand’s most remarkable artists, Billy Apple is nearing 80. His lengthy, and still ongoing, career has encompassed direct involvement in some of the most crucial phenomena of postwar and contemporary art, from Pop to Conceptualism, body art to institutional critique—sometimes all together.
For nearly 25 years, Sheela Gowda has been lauded for her use of agrarian materials, such as cow dung and jute, sourced from her native India, as well as thread and human hair.
In the near decade since the MIT List Visual Arts Center presented “Sensorium” (2006), an artistic exploration of aesthetics, technology and the senses, the institution has championed art that engages the body as well as the eye.
It’s graduation season and spirits are high on the campus of Beijing’s Central Academy of Fine Arts (CAFA). It is during this time in June that Xu Bing, the institution’s former vice president and current head of its academic committee, meets with me at the CAFA museum café.
From homeless architecture to dictatorial dinnerware? Whether overseeing the operation of an Iraqi food truck manned
by refugees and war veterans, or creating replicas of looted artifacts, Rakowitz’s interventionist projects and site-specific installations explore the idea of making “the invisible” visible.