This Week In Art: Monday 31st July – Sunday 6th August

This Week In Art: Monday 31st July – Sunday 6th August

Our weekly round-up of the best art exhibitions to attend, and engaging reads to keep you up to speed

What’s happening this week

  • Microsoft Paint survives! The beloved program was facing the ax, but after protests Microsoft concede that the classic won’t go away so easily. [News Watch TV]
  • Is it ever okay for a gallery to sell art for financial reasons? An American gallery comes under fire for plans to sell 40 artworks – including works donated by Norman Rockwell – as executive director Van Shields says ‘To survive, it is change, move, or die — we have to change.’ [NPR]
  • Banksy’s ‘Girl with Balloon’ has been chosen as the UK’s favourite artwork, over the likes of Constable and Turner. [Telegraph]
  • The ICA in Boston is met with more protest over Dana Schutz’ controversial ‘Open Casket’ painting. Should the gallery take a moral stand? [New York Times]
  • Galleries in the Rhineland decide a new approach is needed to survive the slew of closings and the expenses of art fairs with new program ‘Okey Dokey’. [Artnet News]
  • Want to be someone else for a day? Just find artist Paul Ramirez Jonas, who is making fake ID’s at The New Museum in New York.  [Artnet News]
  • An entire collection from photographer Annie Leibovitz has been deemed ‘not culturally significant’ by the Canadian governement. [New York Times]
  • Reality star, President, artist? A sketch from US President Donald Trump sells for $29,184, but maybe he shouldn’t quit his day job just yet… [Hyperallergic]


Our selection of must-see events to put in your calendar:

Zadie Xa: The Conch, Sea Urchin and Brass Bell, 3rd August to 24th September Pump House Gallery, London: Canadian artist Xa, who is based in London, describes the story of a displaced body’s journey and return to a ‘homeland’. Xa works with notions of identity and self in relation to Asian diaspora through film, textiles, and costume design. In the exhibition, the artist weaves a narrative of rejection and hope. [Pump House Gallery]

Zadie Xa, The Conch, Sea Urchin and Brass Bell, 2017. Courtesy of the artist.

Art Nocturne Knocke, 5th to 15th August, Knocke-Heist, Belgium: Taking place only in the evening, Art Nocturne Knocke has made a name for itself for being one of the most prestigious European fairs of the summer. The night fair, situated by the sea, caters to experienced and new collectors alike with its diverse range of art and antiques.  [Art Nocturne Knocke]

Jean Koumy ,‘Blue Eyes’, acrylic on canvas, courtesy of Atelier Borabeau Gallery.

Devils Advocate, August 4th, Centrala, Birmingham: The group show brings together five artists to discuss their ideas around gender and culture for one night only. The exhibition will feature a varied selection of media including jewellery, sculpture, painting and film, with the aim of provoking some difficult conversations. [Centrala]

Devils Advocate, Courtesy of Centrala

What not to miss

Don’t miss your last chance to see these exhibitions, now in their final week:

Memorie Urbane: From Wall to the Gallery, dMake Art, Rome, til August 4th: Memorie Urbane is a street art project that spans 13 cities, with almost 120 artists involved internationally, allowing artists to rediscover and reclaim their cities. This exhibition collects work from the artists who have participated in the festival in Italy, reflecting on the practice and implications of street art. [Memorie Urbane]

 Lula Goce, courtesy of Memorie Urbane.

Hansel and Gretel, til August 6th, Park Avenue Armory, New York: What does public space mean in an age of surveillance? Referencing the story of Hansel and Gretel – where a familiar forest becomes menacing to lost children – heavyweight artist Ai Wei Wei joins award winning architects Jacques Herzog and Pierre de Meuron in this ambitious show. The artists’ turn the Armory’s Drill Hall into a sinister environment, where every movement is tracked as drones patrol overhead. Big Brother is watching you. [Park Avenue Armory]

Installation view of Hansel and Gretel, Ai Wei Wei, Jacques Herzog, Pierre de Meuron, Park Armory Avenue. Photo courtesy of James Ewing

Catch up

Recently opened and unmissable. Make sure you save some time to visit these ongoing exhibitions:

The Encounter: Drawings From Leonardo To Rembrandt,  until October 22nd, National Portrait Gallery, London: Rarely do we get to see the working process of Renaissance and 17th Century masters. This exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery which includes sketchbooks of some of the greatest artists of the era, gives us a rare behind the scenes look at their preparatory work and studies. [National Portrait Gallery]

A sheet of figure studies,  Rembrandt von Rijn c.1636. Copyright: The Henry Barber Trust, the Barber Institute of Fine Arts, University of Birmingham.

Walker Evans, until 14th August, Pompidou Centre, Paris: The Pompidou’s retrospective combines over 400 images from the across the fabled photographer’s career with an assortment of personal artefacts collected by Evans himself. His documentary style has shaped generations of artists and this show is a testament to his widespread influence and importance. [Centre Pompidou]

Walker Evans, The Passengers, New York, 1941, Walker Evans, Princetown, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Princetown University Press, 2000.

Emma Hart: Mamma Mia! Until 3rd September, Whitechapel Gallery, London: As part of the Max Mara Art Prize for Women, Whichapel Gallery presents Emma Hart: Mamma Mia! In this show Hart dissects thoughts surrounding therapy; for doomed couples, troubled families, or even the viewer. The artist magnifies the tediousness of difficult relationships through a sparse and stark design. There is a palpable tension throughout this exhibition. [Whitechapel Gallery]

Emma Hart, Mamma Mia!, installation view photo by Thierry Bal, copyright the artist, Courtesy the Whitechapel Gallery.

Cover Photo: Walker Evans, The Passengers, New York, 1941, Walker Evans, Princetown, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Princetown University Press, 2000.