Lucent: Aboriginal and Pacific Works from the Collection

To be glowing with or emitting light is to be lucent. Yet, despite the title of the exhibition, the artworks of Lucent: Aboriginal and Pacific Works from the Collection are not consistently luminous in this literal sense. Although there are aspects of material lustre, this exhibition, which is currently on display at the Queensland Art Gallery of Modern Art, instead takes a more symbolic and spiritual approach in conveying the brightness of its artworks.

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Detail of a group of banumbirr (morning star poles)

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A Gem in Toulouse: Musée des Augustins

One of the best museums in Toulouse, Musée des Augustins offers a brilliant collection of medieval art and French paintings. It is a must-see not only for art enthusiasts but for everyone visiting the brick colored city of Toulouse.

Housed in an ancient convent, Musée des Augustins resides in a majestic setting. Besides its art collections the museum compound hosts a gigantic church and a beautiful courtyard surrounded by an elegant gothic arcade.

The beautiful hall designed by Jorge Pardo houses the 12th century Romanesque capitals.

The beautiful hall designed by Jorge Pardo houses stunning Romanesque capitals dating back to the 12th century.

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Le Corbusier @ Centre Pompidou

The retrospective exhibition Le Corbusier: Mesures de l’homme at Centre Pompidou is a must see for those interested in Le Corbusier himself. Rather than only focusing on his architectural works, the exhibition also presents his career as an artist and exhibits an ensemble of paintings, furniture, sketches, models and sculptures of the influential architect Le Corbusier who was also an urban planner, theorist, sculptor and a painter.

A colorful painting by Le Corbusier representing the Modulor, a system of proportions based on the human scale devised by the master architect.

A colorful painting by Le Corbusier representing the Modulor, a system of proportions based on the human scale devised by the master architect.

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Tribal Artefacts in Paris: Musée du Quai Branly

Musée du Quai Branly in Paris is a museum of tribal objects and artefacts and definitely a must-see for those interested in the genre. Its building, designed by the star architect Jean Nouvel, is also an interesting piece of contemporary architecture.

Although the collection of Quai Branly is rich, colourful and fascinating, like other European and North American museums with colonial collections, it does not present the genuine story of the origins of its objects. And the visitors ought to ask the question, how come ritualistic tribal objects from Polynesia, Australia or Madagascar end up in Paris, completely removed from their original contexts.

Fancy architecture by Jean Nouvel - Part of the museum overlooking the street is covered by a vegetal wall. The museum is preceded by a very strange glass window, which continues for meters separating the museum garden from the street. (Notice the Eiffel Tower in the background)

Fancy architecture by Jean Nouvel – Part of the museum overlooking the street is covered by a vegetal wall. The museum garden is preceded by a very strange glass window, which continues for meters separating the garden from the public street. (Notice the Eiffel Tower in the background)

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#occupygezi: Art of the Gezi Movement

This was a small article first published in the V&A’s poster blog in June 16, 2013, when the Gezi protests were still in progress. This online article, which was later on published in print for the August 2013 issue of Creative Review, aimed to present a quick look at the wonderful creative production we have experienced during the extraordinary times of Gezi. Here is the article as it was published online back in June 2013 with minor edits:

A photo taken from Istiklal Street during the protests.

A photo from Istiklal Street during the Gezi resistance.

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From Van Gogh to Kandinsky: An Exhibition in LA

Expressionism in Germany and France: From Van Gogh to Kandinsky at LACMA (Los Angeles County Museum of Art) delivers a colorful array of beautiful works by famous painters like Van Gogh, Cézanne and Kandinsky.

There are some very beautiful paintings by Van Gogh in the exhibition. Left: Van Gogh, Poplars in Saint-Rémy, 1889. Right: Van Gogh, Pollard Villows at Sunset, 1888.

There are some very beautiful paintings by Van Gogh in the exhibition. Left: Van Gogh, Poplars in Saint-Rémy, 1889. Right: Van Gogh, Pollard Villows at Sunset, 1888.

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Behind the Scenes of the Cool City

On 7th and 8th of November, Salt Galata in Istanbul hosted a brilliant two day workshop titled ‘Cool Istanbul: Urban Enclosures and Resistances.’ The workshop was initiated as part of a research project based in the Institute of European Ethnology in University of Munich.

The event takes its name from a Newsweek cover from 8 years ago featuring the title ‘Cool Istanbul.’ Using this title as a starting point, the discussion of the workshop focused on investigating the creative processes in the production of a cool Istanbul, along with the consumption of the cool city and the brutal reality of gentrification, urban poverty, precarious labor, exploitation, discrimination and run-down neighbourhoods behind the cool façade of the city.

Left: Newsweek cover of Aug. 29, 2005, Right: Cool Istanbul workshop cover

Left: Newsweek cover of Aug. 29, 2005, Right: Cool Istanbul workshop cover

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Review: 13th Istanbul Biennial

Months before its opening, 13th Istanbul Biennial titled ‘Mom, am I barbarian?’ raised much criticism about its various aspects such as the event’s sponsors, subject, graphic design, etc. But why so much criticism?

Istanbul Biennial is organized by İKSV (Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts), a foundation created and funded by a family corporation called Eczacıbaşı Holding. Internationally the biennial is Turkey’s most esteemed and famous art event. Various contemporary artists around the world are invited to participate in the event and it is a very significant occasion for the Turkish art scene which does not have collections of world famous modern and contemporary artists. Besides, the biennial is highly anticipated by art enthusiasts in İstanbul, a city with scarce amount of art museums and exhibitions compared to other big cities like New York, London and Paris.

 

Antrepo 3 Entrance Area

Antrepo 3 Entrance Area

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