Art Monthly 337: June 2010

Art Monthly cover
Francis Al?s Walks

Coline Milliard

The Artist as Artist

Dean Kenning

History of Art, the

Klara Kemp-Welch

Emerging Markets

Colin Gleadell

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Francis Alÿs The Nightwatch from 'Seven Walks' 2004


Walks of Life

Coline Milliard looks at Francis Alÿs's art at ground level

The modern, globalised metropolis may resist individuals and their narratives, but Francis Alÿs's perambulations reimagine the city at human scale. By setting up frameworks for his walks in London, is Alÿs fragmenting the city - and, if so, to what end?

'Francis Alÿs's "Seven Walks" introduces stories to the capital, the starting points of urban myths that could be perpetually transmitted and transformed.'


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Emma Hart The Question Department, Performance Two 2009


The Artist as Artist

Dean Kenning argues that schools are an appropriate place to question what artists do

There are many instances where artists make an appearence within their own work; instead of forcing interaction between audience members, could interaction between audience and artist prove more fruitful? And are schools ideal for facilitating just such situations?

'Hannah Arendt warned that with the rise of modern "society" the presence of others, rather than constituting a common world, may merely be the means to satisfy the private, narcissistic need for public admiration.'



Cut and Come Again

The new government brings with it inevitable budget cuts, the first of many promised. On cue, and as with the previous Conservative regime, the low-priority arts are offered up to business as a philanthropic charity case that needs to be taught how be more enterprising. But does making art more like business simply produce more business and less art?

'Voted the "most fanciable" MP by his colleagues in 2008 - albeit on a Sky News poll - the ex-head boy of Charterhouse, who read philosophy, politics and economics at Oxford at the same time as the PM, Jeremy Hunt was expected to be a high-flyer. Instead, he landed the arts.'


Middlesex University closes its most successful course; Tate Modern comes under fire for relying too heavily on grassroots goodwill; the sorry fate of Anish Kapoor's tower for the Seville Expo; galleries are launched and refurbished; new studios open; and all the latest news on art world appointments, events, commissions and more.

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History of Art, the

Klara Kemp-Welch

Caroline Bergvall and Ciarán Maher

Stephen Lee


Colin Perry

Contemporary Art Iraq

Omar Kholeif

Glasgow International Festival of Visual Art

Rosie Lesso

Tatton Park Biennial: Framing Identity

David Trigg

Jo Coupe: Crystalline Energy

Paul Usherwood

Rachel Harrison

Cherry Smyth

Melanie Gilligan: Popular Unrest

Maria Walsh

Heiner Goebbels

Maria Fusco


Artists' Books

Sol LeWitt

Stephen Bury on the conceptual artist's book works

'The book format was peculiarly suited to LeWitt's serial experimentation. The cut of recto and verso pages and the narrative progression from beginning to end allowed the revelation of geometrical permutations as they evolved in complexity.'




Alex Coles on Claire Doherty's new collection of essays on art in time and place

'According to Claire Doherty, in 2007 artists "contested and frustrated the expectations of the art tourist, producing what we might term situation-specific, rather than site-specific projects".'



Vote Art

Mike Watson on Mark McGowan's pre-election provocations

'While McGowan demonstrated the ability of art to mimic politics very convincingly, he also demonstrated the still existing freedom of art from politics. That nothing useful should be done with this freedom from responsibility by artists generally may be the real pity.'



Berlin Gallery Weekend

David Ulrichs on the German capital's latest successful event

'Every year, on the last weekend in April, the Berlin art world is so caught up in a frenzy of VIP events and gallery openings that no one dares to ask the simple question: "What is Gallery Weekend Berlin?".'



Centre Pompidou-Metz

Alex Coles on the latest franchised museum outpost

'From an intriguing cardboard-constructed micro-studio attached to the sixth-floor balcony of the Pompidou Centre in Paris in 2004 (in which Shigeru Ban's team worked on the new building for the project's duration) to looking like a shiny white Sainsbury's superstore - just what precisely went wrong with the Pompidou-Metz?'


Emerging Markets


Colin Gleadell on the sale of work from Brazil, Russia, India and China

'Following the end of the art boom in the autumn of 2008, prices in some of these markets crashed by up to 50%. But recently the Chinese market has started to bounce back, as has the market for modern Indian art of the 1950s and 60s. The BRIC sale was therefore an opportunity to compare the resilience of these key emerging markets.'



Selling Power

Henry Lydiate on what a new courtcase involving Marlene Dumas reveals about the balance of power between artists and dealers

'Artists who do have strong bargaining power in the marketplace can choose who can buy directly from them, and exercise powerful influence and control over sales by their dealers. Gossip and speculation in recent times has suggested that powerful 'negotiating' artists and their dealers maintain blacklists of speculative (and therefore unwanted) purchasers to whom they and/or their dealers would never sell.'



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