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Author Archives: Nathalie  Soo

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Review: Ai Weiwei at the Royal Academy ...
The Ai Weiwei exhibition held at the Royal Academy in London has been one of the most anticipated art events of the year. The retrospective showcases work made by the Chinese artist over the last 22 years, filling 10 rooms with some of his most famous and ferociously political pieces.   This is Ai’s first major survey after his four-year travel ban from China. Although the artist did much of the show’s planning from Beijing, he was finally granted a six-month British visa and was able to come and place his final touches on the exhibition. Surveillance, imprisonment, deconstruction and reconstruction that pertain to China’s political history, are some of the key themes resonating throughout the show. Before entering the gallery space, one is instantly confronted with Ai Weiwei’s “Trees” installation, which stands at the centre of the Annenberg Courtyard of the RA. These enormous sculptures are made from fragments of dead trees that have been reconstructed and carefully joined together to resemble eight large individual trees. The installation is a response to the Chinese government’s slogan of ‘One China’ and comes to represent the diversity of Chinese society that has seemingly unified the country. The spectacle also sees Ai Weiwei transform ordinary objects into conceptual, politically charged thinking pieces. The dissident artist shows us their power by reconfiguring everyday objects, using materials heavily associated with Chinese identity and the nation’s rich imperial history. Grapes (2010), a cluster of twenty-seven Qing stools is one of Ai’s various sculptures that take an anti-communist stance. The work paints a picture of a beautiful past that shows the meeting and unification of souls before China’s Communist takeover. It is not surprising that Ai managed to fit in the largest and not to mention heaviest sculpture into the RA. Straight (2008-12) is composed of an astounding 200 tonnes of steel rods, which have been straightened to create a structure that commemorates those who were killed and affected by the 2008 Sichuan earthquake. Surrounding the work is a list of schoolchildren names who were known to have died from the disaster. Much of Ai’s work is humorous and purposefully paradoxical in its meaning and message. He Xie (2011) does just this, as the artist plays on the dual meaning of the Chinese word. “He xie” can mean both “river crab” and “harmonious” which is emblematic of how the Chinese government wants the nation to be perceived. At the corner of one room are hundreds of grey and rather sprightly orange coloured porcelain river crabs piled and scattered on top of one another. The work is representative of the destruction of his studio in Shanghai and his arrest in 2011.   The notion of surveillance is a constant and persisting theme within the exhibition. In the second last room, 6 giant boxes fill the space. Next to them are small platforms that people can step up on in order to look inside the box. Here, Ai recreates scenes from his 81-day imprisonment, where he was not allowed to be more than a metre away from a prison guard at all times. S.A.C.R.E.D (2014) exposes a stint of his subjugating experience and gives one an idea of what it is like to be constantly watched.   Altogether, it is difficult to digest and apprehend the great deal of work on display. It is evident that Ai Weiwei tests the limits of his materials. With his clever and witty transformation of them he is able to convey powerful and controversial political messages. As one of the most fearless and contentious artists, Ai’s work never ceases to amaze as he continually shocks his audiences. The spectacle is one that should not be missed and is on display at the Royal Academy until 13 December 2015. 1 December 2015 Any views or opinions in the post are solely those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of the company or contributors. ...

December 01, 2015

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Artist of the Month - Ronald Ventura...
“The skin of his subjects can become an expressive surface, with tattoo drawings adding a new layer of meaning. Over the years he has developed a menagerie of what he calls “zoomanities” — human subjects with animal attributes, and vice versa — based on early 17th-century etchings of humanized animals he once saw.” - Sonia Kolesnikov-Jessop from the New York Times Ronald Ventura has established himself in the last decade as one of the most prominent Contemporary Southeast Asian artists. Since his record breaking sale of “Graygound”, which sold for USD $1.1 million at the Sotheby’s Hong Kong auction in 2011, the Filipino artist has continued to produce works of art composed of figurative motifs, using his multi-layering style which is unique to him. Point of Know Return 1 by Ronald Ventura Lithography and oil base paint on aluminium sheet, Lightbox 2012 70cm x 90cm / 27.6″ x 35.5″ Edition of 3  USD $11,200 Partnership with STPI   Any views or opinions in the interview are solely those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of the company or contributors. ...

September 24, 2015

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Artists in their Studios...
The Artling features a curated selection of artworks by artists living and working in over 20 different countries. With a majority of works produced in Asia or by Asian artists, we would like to take this opportunity to celebrate 10 artists across different countries within the region working in their studios.  Ketna working on the ‘The Last Asian Supper'  Working on 'The Fall of Venus'  Image: Artist’s Pinterest       Image: John Martono Image: John Martono       Farhad Moshiri in his studio in Tehran, 2008 Image: ArtAsiaPacific, photo by Shirin Aliabadi      Image: Cassette    Image: TrendsNow       Image: Artist’s Instagram   Image: Artist’s Pinterest     Chandraguptha Thenuwara working on ‘Spaces Giving Shade’ Image: GSA   Image: Geotamil       Image: Gridcrosser       Image: Amy Goodwin       Image: The Star   Any views or opinions in the interview are solely those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of the company or contributors. *Note: If any of these images belong to you and would like to be referenced, please do not hesitate to let know and we will happily make the appropriate changes. ...

September 24, 2015

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Exhibitions to Visit this September: Hong Kong...
Our picks for exhibitions to catch in Hong Kong this September....

September 17, 2015

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Catch These Exhibitions Before the End of the Week: Singapore...
Check out these exhibitions before they close this week!...

September 16, 2015

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Exhibitions to Visit This September: Philippines...
Art Informal Images on the Horizon Jojo Serrano There are some brilliant shows to catch this September in Philippines with galleries showcasing a variety of works from painting, mixed media, sculpture to photography. The Artling have compiled a list of 14 exhibitions that you should see this month.  13 August – 12 September 2015 Jojo Serrano, Rock Giant, France (2015), oil on canvas Image: Artinformal   What Falls Apart  Joel Vega 13 August - 12 September 2015 Joel Vega, The Hills Have Eyes (2014), photo transfer on cloth, embroidery  Image: Artinformal   Okay Yeo Kaa 13 August - 12 September 2015 Yeo Kaa, Slowly Dying From Overthinking (2015), acrylic on canvas  Image: Artinformal    Finale Art File Yasmin Sison 04 September - 26 September 2015 Image: Finale Art File    Art Underground Up in the Basement Rene Bituin x Gerecho Iniel  24 August - 14 September 2015 Image: Click the City      Silverlens Galleries Touch Me, Touch Me Not John Pettyjohn & Tessy Pettyjohn  20 August - 19 September 2015 Jon Pettyjohn, TM1 (2015), stoneware Image: Silverlens     The Hunters Enter the Woods Patricia Perez Eustaquio  20 August - 19 September 2015 Patricia Perez Eustaquio, Casting Figures (Black Dust) I (2015), oil on canvas Image: Silverlens     Kulay-Diwa Ambiguous Dream Mark Jefferson Huang  30 August - 21 September 2015 Image: Kulay-Diwa     MO Space Meeting Rivers  Pardo De Leon 15 August - 13 September 2015 Pardo De Leon, Rower (2015), oil on canvas  Image: MO Space     Galleria Duemila “Group Show”  Nilo Ilarde 05 September - 28 September 2015 Nilo Ilarde, The Road To Flatness (2010), installation  Image: Manila Art Blogger      West Gallery Psychedelic Behaviour  (Gallery 1) Pow Martinez 13 August - 12 September 2015    Shepherd Moons (Gallery 2) Alvin Villaruel 13 August - 12 September 2015    Bad Ass Magis (Gallery 3) Frolian Calayag:  13 August - 12 September 2015    Abandoned (Gallery 4) Soler Santos:  13 August - 12 September 2015 Images: West Gallery    Any views or opinions in the post are solely those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of the company or contributors. ...

September 04, 2015

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Catch These Exhibitions Before the End of the Week: Singapore ...
  This Summer there have been several exciting exhibitions to attend in Singapore. As August comes to an end, The Artling would like to share with you some of our favourite exhibitions from the month. Singapore Tyler Print Institute (STPI) As We Never Imagined: 50 Years of Art Making 13 June – 30 August 2015 Roy Lichtenstein, Reflections on the Scream (1990), Collection of Singapore Art Museum, © Estate of Roy Lichtenstein Image: STPI      ARNDT Subtraction Paradise Jigger Cruz 4 June – 29 August 2015 Jigger Cruz, Disjointed (2015), Oil and spray paints on canvas, 172 x 141 cm (diptch overall) / 172 x 141 cm (each) Image: ARNDT     Objectifs Centre for Photography and Filmmaking  Sajeev Photo Studio: A Decade of Portraiture in Little India 30 July – 31 August 2015 © Sajeev Digital Studio Image: Objectifs      FOST If You Think I Winked, I Did Khairullah Rahim  1 July – 30 August 2015 Khairullah Rahim, Eye Candy II (2015), Acrylic on Canvas, 88 x 58 x 4.5 cm Image: FOST      Element Art Space Desires Mystified: Oil Paintings by Ming Jing Ming Jing 14 August – 6 September 2015 Image: SAGG     Any views or opinions in the interview are solely those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of the company or contributors. *Note: If any of these images belong to you and would like to be referenced, please do not hesitate to let know and we will happily make the appropriate changes. ...

August 27, 2015

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11 Must See Exhibitions this September: Singapore ...
Check out The Artling's picks for exhibitions to catch this September in Singapore!...

August 27, 2015

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Decorative with Art: Monochrome ...
Monochromatic artworks are lovely additions to the home. These works can pair well with subtle, nude and earthy tones and can change the entire atmosphere of a room. As these works are limited in colour, they can also function as great statement pieces without being too overbearing. Here are a few examples that have inspired The Artling…  Image: Vogue Living Interior Design by Arent&Pyke, Architecture by TFAD, Photography by Anson Smart, Shoot styling by Megan Morton   The artwork (seen above) coordinates beautifully with furniture in this living room. With hints of black and different hues of grey, these minute details help draw ones attention to the boldness of the painting, while allowing us to appreciate the soft pink and sandy tones within the room.  Image: Muotoseikka / https://stylizimo.com/   Image: https://www.leveronedesign.com/   Large monochrome works of art can help frame the room and elongate your walls to make the home feel larger. If you have an bare wall in your bedroom or living area that needs filling, monochrome works can transform as well as build character within the room. Image: INT2   Image: Burlap & Lace   Here are a selection of monochrome pieces from The Artling that can be incorporated into your home.  Turn Around by Nakatani Suisen  Sumi on Xuan paper 85cm x 154cm / 33.5” x 60.6” Unique Work  USD $8,445     Awakened by Tian Xu Tong Ink & colour on Rice Paper 2014 135cm x 34cm / 53.1” x 13.4” Unique Work  USD $6,200     Untitled  by Maria Taniguchi 114.3cm x 83.8cm / 45” x 33.0” Unique Work USD $5,000     Every Breath You Take by Ezekiel Wong  Ink on paper 2014 30cm x 43cm / 11.8” x 16.9” Unique Work USD $650   Pearl of the Orient #11 by Shin-young Park Screen Print on Metal  2013 90cm x 90cm / 35.4” x 35.4” Unique Work  USD $4,000        Any views or opinions in the interview are solely those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of the company or contributors. *Note: If any of these images belong to you and would like to be referenced, please do not hesitate to let know and we will happily make the appropriate changes. ...

August 12, 2015

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5 Must See Exhibitions This September: Hong Kong...
Check out The Artling's top five picks for exhibitions to catch this September!...

August 12, 2015

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