A mixed blog of fashion goodies
Have an idea for the Hint Blog? Email us.
Bookmark and Share

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Dean Mayo Davies does the London art thing...

It's exhibition overload in London at the moment. We're inundated with enough brilliant art and design shows to fill several weekends off. They won't be around for long, so the message here is: pull a sick day and catch ‘em while you can.

First up is avant-garde serial spotter Yayoi Kusama at Victoria Miro’s N1 space. Fifty creepy, germ-like works on canvas are on view, but as always it's her interactive installations that really shine. Infinity Mirrored Room–Love Forever is a freestanding mirrored room in which a series of colored light bulbs flash their way to boundlessness. Upstairs, Dots Obsession–Infinity Mirrored Room is a yellow inflatable structure containing smaller yellow inflatables and again mirrored to oblivion in a mind-melting trip of anxiety. A version of her famous Narcissus Garden is even installed out back in Regents Canal. You really would be dotty (sorry) to miss it. Until March 20.

Literally next door, at Parasol Unit, is Darren Almond's Fire Under Snow. British artist Almond's work deals with themes of time, memory, human labor and exploitation. A highlight of the exhibition is the film installation In The Between (left), shown in a vacuous, dark room over three screens. Filmed on the Qinghai-Tibet railway, the piece is a stirring clash of cultures, spiritually and industrially, from a troubled nation. Also check out the brutal photographs of Siberian dead tree forests in Night + Fog. Until March 30.

From there, hop across to Shoreditch’s young Seventeen Gallery on Kingsland Road. Chow down on an exhibit of Les Blank's revered film Werner Herzog Eats His Shoe, in which the German new-wave director does exactly that. Until March 22.

Then head west to W1 for a show by Jenny Holzer at Monika Sprüth Philomene Magers. Bizarrely, as Holzer in London is a pretty rare occurrence, this one seems to have slipped under the radar. She ranks high on my list of faves, so this exhibit really is a must-see, if I can speak for everyone. In Detained, the artist has made a study of declassified U.S. government documents relating to the Iraq War. Several "handprint" paintings depict American soldiers who are accused of crimes in the Middle East, and there's also a piece called Torso, in which a ribcage of ten semicircular LEDs relays information from statements and investigation reports regarding the accused soldiers. Heavy and uniquely Holzer, it confronts the mechanics of politics and war, revealing the suffering of the individual. Until March 15.

Now on to Chelsea, and the new European headquarters of the auction house Phillips de Pury, where a sale called SATURDAY@PHILLIPS will take place on March 15, billed as an affordable—though undoubtedly it won't be—sale of contemporary art, design, jewelry and photographs. A jaw-dropping selection of pieces will go under the hammer, including photographs by Araki, Wolfgang Tillmans, Thomas Demand, Nan Goldin, Hiroshi Sugimoto and Jeff Wall, as well as sculptures and canvases by Takashi Murakami and work by Keith Haring, Basquiat and Warhol, whose Souper Dress from 1960—a mini-dress repeat-printed with Campbell's soup cans—is just crying out for a pair of sky-high Pierre Hardy heels. It's what Warhol would've wanted. And I haven't even mentioned the furniture yet. All I'll say is my birthday is coming up soon. I’ve been very good, so if someone wants to buy me Peter Shire’s Brazilia table (1981) and the Gala lamp by the recently deceased Ettore Sottsass, I’ll graciously accept. Until March 15.