Figge von Rosen Galerie, Cologne
Humour me for a minute. If you’re not familiar with the 1950’s American Civil Defense film character “Bert the Turtle” and his song Duck and Cover, used to teach children how to behave in the event of nuclear attack, take a second and pull that up on YouTube. It’s there. I’m going to go out on a limb and assume everyone remembers Right Said Fred’s 1991 hit song I’m Too Sexy (but in the case I’m wrong, and despite seemingly every record company’s attempt to remove every music video from YouTube, that’s there too, for now…). So now that those are both fresh in mind, imagine Bert the Turtle singing, “I’m too sexy for this bomb, too sexy for this bomb, so sexy it’s wro-ong.” Have you got some image in mind? Good, now we can talk about Bas de Wit’s exhibition Duck and Cover. Read the rest of this entry »
Continuing with the theme of inflatable objects, we’ll travel down and over, to NYC, where information about photographer Brian Hedenberg’s Inflatable Photo Studio (IPS) hasn’t even been officially released yet. Hedenberg has lived with the problems photographers face, namely, the lack of a studio, and found an interesting inflatable solution.
As they say, necessity is the mother of invention, and thus the IPS was created. In just three minutes, any photographer can have a studio, pretty much anywhere. Although the studio looks more like a massive blown-up garbage bag than anything else, it has all of the components one needs: it’s portable, it can block out natural light, it’s weather proof, and it’s affordable. The studio boasts two entrances, and the fan is adjustable so that it can blow on the model to achieve that tousled, breezy look that fashion magazines adore.
You can pre-order the Inflatable Photo Studio at www.ips-studio.com.
As any photographer can tell you, New York is one of the inspiring cities in the world. And the most inspired hotel in NY? Our vote goes for the Greenwich, where you can escape from the city streets into an atmosphere that is, most definitely, New York.
Contributing writer: Alicia Reuter
Behind the rather grand period facade on Norrmalmstorg Square lurks a youthful spirited new hotel set to become the leader of the pack in royal Stockholm.
Local design heroes CKR have redefined the grand hotel experience, void of the trappings of old boy luxury & pomp – this is for the smart set of sophistication yearning for the understated and somewhat “tamed“ Grand Dame.
The Nobis Hotel, is anything but norrmal.
The Twilight Zone’s Rod Serling once said, “Fantasy is the impossible made probable. Science fiction is the improbable made possible.” What he said about science fiction could easily be said about a lot of the arts, but also easily about the scientific pursuit of artificial intelligence. Not so long ago it would have seemed improbable that “robot soldiers” could be used in combat. That particular shift from improbability to possibility has already been seen. Whether these kinds of advancements are embraced as positive progress of mankind’s capabilities, or dreaded as the harbingers of a Man vs. Machine Terminator-esque apocalyptic future, really does boil down to personal viewpoint.
This is where art comes back into the story. Art can deal with social and political subject matter, but ultimately it’s always as just as subjective as one’s personal opinion on, for example and to stay on subject, whether robots are a triumph of science or something to be feared. In Robot Dreams, Kunsthaus Graz’s second co-production with Basel’s Jean Tinguely Museum, robots become a medium for an artistic exploration of ethical questions surrounding artificial intelligence, differing definitions of what intelligence is, as well as robot-associated concepts such as power, control, and fear. Don’t let the overwhelmingly positive title of the exhibition fool you though. Despite the usage of Robot Dreams rather than, say, Robot Nightmares, the exhibition maintains a critical tone even if aiming for a robot-like detachment.
October 9, 2010 – February 20, 2011 at Kunsthaus Graz, Lendkai 1, 8020 Graz, Austria. Opening hours: Tuesday – Sunday, 10am – 6pm.
Stay at the art-packed Schlossberghotel in Graz…it’s anything but Robotic.
Contributing writer: Melissa Frost
By now Banksy is practically a household name, but he’s not the only artist in his genre. Expand your graffiti education by checking out the Metropolis exhibition at DOX, the centre for contemporary art in Prague. Metropolis is returning from a successful run at the Expo 2010 in Shanghai.
The Czech street artists in the exhibition display their work under the monikers Masker, Pasta, Tron, Skarf, Cryptic 257 and Point, and there’s a lot more than tags and burners to be seen. These are some seriously talented artists, bringing in a new generation of super-hybridity in art.
Each artist started by depicting the urban environment of their imagination, transforming the gallery space to fit their needs. They started by knocking down the walls, and it only got wilder from there. Visitors to the exhibition enter the simulated city that replaced the white cube from underneath a “bridge”. From there the artist Point has penetrated seemingly Communist-era buildings with organic forms. Skarf shows a video montage whose sound sets the tone throughout the city. Cryptic 257′s graffiti vending machine replaces sugary sweets with colourful cans. Masker, Pasta, and Tron offer even more surprises as they expose the lives of the cities fictitious inhabitants.
The exhibition runs through the end of the year. More about Metropolis and the artists involved here: www.doxprague.org
Your eyes will be dancing after being exposed to Metropolis, so give them a break by spending a few nights at Icon. The urban location couldn’t be better, in the centre of the city it’s just steps from all the fashion, entertainment, and shopping the city has to offer.
Contributing writer: Alicia Reuter