Art Monthly 465: April 2023

Art Monthly cover Art Monthly back cover
Rosa Barba

Interviewed by Maria Walsh

Figuring Figuration

Larne Abse Gogarty

Life After Life

Sophie J Williamson

Frida Orupabo

Profile by Phoebe Cripps

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Rosa Barba, Inside the Outset: Evoking a Space of Passage, 2021


On Camera

Rosa Barba interviewed by Maria Walsh

Taking cinema as a metaphor for many things in our life, maybe there’s a way that we can use it as a way of training ourselves to think for ourselves, to see for ourselves and create new spaces.

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Hamishi Farah, Joey, 2020


Figuring Figuration

Larne Abse Gogarty laments the absence of serious critical debate about the return to figuration in painting

The orientation of a significant portion of contemporary figurative painting is towards propertied forms of self-possession: less a thinking space and more a self-actualisation space, marked by shiny exteriors and Instagram- ready subject matter that prioritises photogenic forms of pleasure.

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Shelagh Wakely, aguadorado, 1993


Life After Life

Sophie J Williamson argues that artists are uniquely placed to model holistic ways of combating capitalism’s addiction to waste and extraction

Artists such as Shelagh Wakely and Gustav Metzger subverted the market of capital gain by inverting artistic labour and production, and the legacy of their practices is now being redeployed in the context of the climate catastrophe: new tools and strategies, both poetic and practical, are being used to shape more liveable futures.

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Frida Orupabo, ‘I have seen a million pictures of my face and still I have no idea’, installation view, 2022, Fotomuseum Winterthur


Frida Orupabo

Phoebe Cripps

The politics of vision reverberate in Frida Orupabo’s research into vintage horror films, such as Halloween, The Pit and La femme au couteau – she is particularly interested in how the gaze is employed to elicit fear.


BBC Blues

When Suella Braverman’s poisonous rhetoric over immigration was criticised by Gary Lineker, it prompted a response from the BBC that perfectly demonstrated the collapse of the arm’s-length policy towards national cultural institutions.

Successive Conservative governments since have approached the public sector like corporate raiders bent on stripping assets from institutions such as the BBC and Channel 4 before finally selling off the carcasses to the highest bidder: death by a thousand cuts.


Artist Leaks

Industria’s new report is damning on the poverty-level fees that public institutions pay artists; Scottish MP’s U-turn on a proposed funding cut to Creative Scotland; a children’s art display in a London hospital is closed down under pressure from pro-Israel lawyers; dealer Ivor Braka settles the lawsuit brought against him over unpaid artist royalty fees; the Coventry City of Culture Trust enters administration, threatening the future of the Reel Store digital gallery less than a year after it openend; plus the latest on galleries, people, awards and more.


Norman Dilworth 1931–2023
Jon Wood

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Marc Camille Chaimowicz, Celebration? Realife, 1972/2023


R.I.P. Germain: “Jesus Died For Us, We Will Die For Dudus!”

Morgan Quaintance

Mike Nelson: Extinction Beckons

Peter Suchin

Carolyn Lazard: Long Take

Hannah Wallis

Elizabeth Price: UNDERFOOT and SLOW DANS

Akshi Singh

Larissa Sansour and Søren Lind: Familiar Phantoms

Lauren Velvick

Marc Camille Chaimowicz: Nuit américaine

Chris McCormack

Margaret Raspé: Automatik

Rachel Pronger

Gordon Matta-Clark & Pope.L: Impossible Failures

Mimi Howard

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Francesco Pedraglio, Battle 25: Cascina (1364), 2021

Artists’ Books

Francesco Pedraglio: Battles Vol 1

Ronnie Angel Pope

The beauty of re-enactment in general, as evidenced by Francesco Pedraglio, is that the narrative can be entirely controlled: the focus can be pulled tight, as and when desired.

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Thomas Crow, The Artist in the Counterculture


Thomas Crow: The Artist in the Counterculture – Bruce Connor to Mike Kelley and Other Tales from the Edge

Morgan Falconer

With Thomas Crow providing no definitive answer to what the counterculture was, one begins to wonder whether – at least for him – it was California itself, and that the ‘culture’ was New York.

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Yve-Alain Bois, An Oblique Autobiography


Yve-Alain Bois: An Oblique Autobiography

Matthew Bowman

Yve-Alain Bois permits us to comprehend how and why grasping the visible surface of painting is necessary to knowing its underpinning structure.

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Ulises de la Orden, The Trial, 2023


Berlinale: Forum and Forum Expanded

Matt Turner

Watching Ulises de la Orden’s The Trial, 2023, feels more like a responsibility than a privilege, the sort of enriching undertaking that sounds horrible when described.

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view of the soon to be repurposed Haus Konstruktiv, Zurich


Art Power Stations

Aoife Rosenmeyer

For a start, how do we power our cities, including cultural venues, and what kind of urban landscape do we want? What is the ideal mix of residential, commercial, cultural and industrial buildings?

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Letter from Antananarivo

Emmanuel Balogun

My trip coincided with an opening at Hakanto Contemporary, a new independent, non-profit, artist-led space that takes its name from the Malagasy word for aesthetic.

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‘Mystery 20 Performing Arts Initiator: Narrative Archaeology’, performance, 2023


Letter from Eleusis

Agnieszka Gratza

Eleusis, the ancient name for the Greek city of Elefsina, literally means ‘advent’ or ‘arrival of a notable someone or person, thing, or event’. I soon discover that some people are more notable than others.

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Caroline Walker, Threshold, 2014, estimated £150,000–200,000, sold for £927,100


Next Generation

Colin Gleadell

The London Modern and Contemporary art sales in February/March were the first major test of the auction market this year, and seemed, on the surface, to pass with flying colours. Yet total sales were 28% down on this time last year. The problem had been the diminishing supply from overseas due to higher import duty and Brexit red tape.

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NFTs for sale on the X2Y2 platform, which recently abandoned its smart contractual resale royalty requirement


Digital Rights Management

Henry Lydiate

The French Ministry of Culture is currently embarking on research into ‘the permanence of artistic royalties through smart contracts and other means, and on how blockchains communicate with each other’, an initiative that focuses on smart contracts for artwork sales requiring first and subsequent buyers to agree to pay artists a percentage of any resale purchase price.

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