New art writing, new art thinking, new artist opportunities – Art Monthly newsletter
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Dec-Jan 18-19


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December-January Issue

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Dara Birnbaum Hostage 1994


Break In

Dara Birnbaum interviewed by Maria Walsh

The pioneering video artist who took on television and embraced activism discusses the power of media and the importance of remembrance.

I used to envy my brother who is a doctor and saves lives. Art doesn’t save lives but it saves the life of the spirit. Actually, art is one of the highest forms of human potential for me.
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Trevor Paglen Comet (Corpus: Omens and Portents) Adversarially Evolved Hallucination 2017


Dematerialised and Dark

Francis Frascina examines archival activism in the digital age

Is the work of pioneering archive activists, such as Lucy Lippard and Luis Camnitzer, negated by the archive’s technological turn, as tackled by the work of Trevor Paglen and Hito Steyerl, or in dialogue with it?

‘The work of art is a document of civilisation and of barbarism. The job of the materialist is to think the two identities – the two kinds of belonging to history – together. Not to reduce one to the other.’ The same could be said of the two identities of the digital ‘technological turn’: radical and enabling/invisible and controlling.
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IC-98 House of Khronos 2016-


Deep Time

Rob La Frenais on art that might outlive the human race

As the reality of climate change comes into sharp focus, what does it mean for long-duration artworks by artists such as Robert Smithson and John Latham or Katie Paterson and Bebe Williams – and does it matter that no one may be around to see them?

One of the central aspects of long-term art projects is the element of the ‘contract’ or ‘legacy’ that enables the artwork to continue beyond the artist’s lifetime. Bebe Williams’s early 1980s conceptual project Instructions for Meeting Time Travellers relies on the passing on through the generations of a document which cites a meeting place that you may know to exist in the future.

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From the Back Catalogue
Art & Oil Colin Perry on the greasing of the art industry



The ‘C’ Word

Arts Council England’s current so-called consultation on its next ten-year strategy (the ‘proposed outcomes for 2030’ have, it seems, already been drafted) is based on a Strategy Consultation Framework that prefers to avoid the word ‘art’ – but without the arts, what is the point of an arts council?

This shift in language from ‘arts’ to ‘culture’ merely shunts the issue of what is meant by the arts into what is meant by culture. Who defines what is and is not culture?
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Art Prescribed

Health secretary Matt Hancock calls for GPs to prescibe art via public libraries; ACE publishes a new report on the socio-economic divisions in arts engagement, education being noted as a prime factor; artist Gavin Turk is arrested during the Extinction Rebellion climate-change protest blockading London roads; oil giant Shell ends its relationship with the National Gallery to focus its corporate influence on schools; fake exhibitions purporting to be by Yayoi Kusama and Takeshi Murakami tour China; plus the latest news on galleries, appointments, prizes and more.

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Victoria Santa Cruz They shouted black at me 1978
on show at Nottingham Contemporary


Before Projection: Video Sculpture 1974-1995

Lizzie Homersham

Antarctica: An Exhibition on Alienation

Rose-Anne Gush

Low Form: Imaginaries and Visions in the Age of Artificial Intelligence

Agnieszka Gratza

John Akomfrah: Mimesis – African Soldier

Tom Snow

Henrik Olesen: Hey Panopticon! Hey Asymmetry!

Mark Prince

mounir fatmi: This is My Body

Aoife Rosenmeyer

Still I Rise

Ellen Mara De Wachter

Bow Gamelan Ensemble: Great Noises that Fill the Air

Morgan Quaintance

Judson Dance Theatre: The Work is Never Done

Alexandra Symons Sutcliffe

Chris Paul Daniels: Northern Lights

Tom Emery

Nashashibi/Skaer: Thinking through other artists

Martin Holman

Chila Kumari Singh Burman: Tales of Valiant Queens

Virginia Whiles

Flo Brooks: Scrubbers

Larne Abse Gogarty



k-punk: The Collected and Unpublished Writings of Mark Fisher (2004-2016)

Jack Smurthwaite

What k-punk is undeniably clear about is Mark Fisher’s stand against today’s anti-intellectualism. It places him as a thinker and writer whose work – varied and prodigious – will continue to have relevance as long as there is any doubt that we should function in solidarity.


Mirror-Touch Synaesthesia: Thresholds of Empathy with Art

Maria Walsh

While phenomenology is acknowledged and addressed positively by many of the book’s contributors, contemporary neuroscience’s grounding in technologies that evidence the workings of the brain overshadows the former’s more imaginary projecting consciousness.


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Zheng Yuan Dream Delivery 2018

Letter from North Rhine-Westphalia


Marcus Verhagen

Just to the west of Dusseldorf, in the slightly down-at-heel town of Monchengladbach, is Museum Abteiberg, which deserves to be world-famous.


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Raja’a Khalid Fortune/Golf 2014

Letter from Dubai

Bad Timing

Stephanie Bailey

Oil, a material that is both life-giving and life- destroying, is taken as something both ‘magical’ and ‘insidious’.


Art After Death

Living Legacies

Henry Lydiate

Two interesting new tools have recently been published to help artists plan their legacies. These endeavours are welcome additions to the growing number of initiatives developed in recent years focusing on artists’ estates – whether from the perspective of living artists planning for posterity, or of heirs and successors inheriting management duties.




This month's highlights include:

  • Tai Shani performance Nottingham Contemporary 6.30pm Fri 7 Dec
  • Wolfgang Tillmans talk on music Somerset House 6.45pm Fri 7 Dec
  • They Are Here artist talk Turf Projects 12.00pm Sat 15 Dec

The updated events and exhibitions calendar can be viewed online.


Exhibition Listings

Art Monthly's exhibition listings can be viewed online.


Michael O’Pray Prize 2018

Read the winning entry online now

Bank – Basement – Becker
Adam Hines-Green on the expression of horror through both fiction and reality in the LA video art of Julie Becker

The Michael O’Pray Prize is a Film and Video Umbrella initiative, in partnership with Art Monthly. Supported by University of East London and Arts Council England.


Art Monthly Talk Show

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Next broadcast: 8pm Monday 10 December

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Audio recordings are available in the Events section of the Art Monthly website:

Recent additions:

Partner Promotion

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20% off ICA Red Gift Membership
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Support radical arts and culture and give a year of unlimited cinema, exhibitions, talks and live programme with ICA Red Membership.

ICA Red Gift Membership gives access to:

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  • Priority booking for ICA Cinema previews, premieres, Q&As and special events
  • Free exhibition ticket for you and a guest
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Assistant Curator

Kettle’s Yard, Cambridge | 3 Dec

Deputy Director

Iniva, London | 3 Dec

Senior Curator

Southbank Centre, London | 4 Dec

Operations Supervisor & Building Technician

South London Gallery | 5 Dec

Assistant Curator: Special Projects

Whitechapel Gallery, London | 5 Dec

General Manager

Studio Voltaire, London | 7 Dec

Partnerships & Communications Manager

DRAF, London | 12 Dec

Lecturer in Film and Moving Image

Norwich University of the Arts | 12 Dec
[email protected]

Exhibitions Assistant

Ikon, Birmingham | 13 Dec

Director’s Assistant

Parasol Unit, London | 14 Dec

House of Voltaire Manager

Studio Voltaire, London | 19 Dec


Focal Point Gallery, Southend | 31 Dec


Liverpool Biennial | 7 Jan


Call for Artists

Submissions for Bloomberg New Contemporaries runs 10 December to 28 January. The 2019 show will mark the 70th anniversary of New Contemporaries.


Production Funding

FLAMIN Productions | 3 Dec

Proposals for a temporary art commission

Towner Art Gallery, Eastbourne | 30 Dec

Write for Art Worlds

Art Quest | Rolling


Open Call: Curator in-Residence

Wysing Arts Centre, Cambridge | 2 Dec

Digital Media Residencies

European Media Artists in Residence Exchange | 3 Dec

Into The Wild

Chisenhale Studios | 6 Dec

London Borough of Culture 2019 Residency

Waltham Forest, London | 7 Dec

Henry L and Natalie E Freund Teaching Fellowship

Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts, Washington University, USA | 18 Jan 2019

ARC Getaways

Stockton Arts Centre | Rolling

Black Artists Development Programme

Slate & HOME, Manchester | Rolling


Filmmaking in a day

The Edge, Bath | 8 Dec


The Rome Scholarship 2019

The Royal Society of British Artists, London | 31 Jan 2019

Step Beyond Travel Grants

European Cultural Foundation | Rolling

Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grants

Pollock-Krasner Foundation | Rolling


‘ECSTASY IN NORWICH’ – Call for Work

Artists’ responses to ideas presented by the life and beliefs of the celebrated female mystic Julian of Norwich’s 16 ‘showings’ (visions). Exhibition runs 8-22 Dec, PV 15 Dec.
LOWER.GREEN | posted work: 11 Dec | hand delivered: 14 Dec


This Year’s Model ’19

Call for entries for studio1.1 London’s Members’ Show. Submit up to 3 images of work from 2018. For info, to join or renew membership click here!
Studio1.1 | 20 Dec


Open Call for Artist Performance

HOME, Manchester | 2 Dec

Open Call for Artist Film Submissions

HOME, Manchester | 14 Dec

Call for Submissions 2019/20

Intermedia Gallery, CCA, Glasgow | 28 Jan

Submissions: Send opportunities to [email protected]


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