ALL THE THRILL OF THE FAIR - ART BASEL HONG KONG 2014

With my wonderful business partner, Jenny Garber and 5 wonderful clients from Australia, I have to say that my experience of Art Basel HK 2014 was exceptional.

From private gallery visits, artist talks and lunch in the home of one of Hong Kong's leading gallery owners, to exceptional dining experiences at The China Club, The Upper House and Island Tang - every sense was catered to.

Our exclusive VIP access enabled our clients to experience the very best on offer during what is known as Art Frazzle! New connections and friendships were formed, new artists discovered and new art treasures where purchased.

The response to our tour been phenomenal, with requests from clients and galleries to be a part of our tour to Art Basel Hong Kong in March 2015.

TESTIMONIAL

'I wanted to be the first to say how wonderful the week was and how marvellous you and Jenny were in the management of such a group! Your professionalism was " par excellence" and the organization, perfection!… I doubt that we could ever repeat such a special week but we could certainly try!'

JA, Melbourne

Special mention must also go to all the galleries and artists who welcomed us so warmly and generously, THANK YOU!

And to The Mandarin Oriental Hotel for their impeccable service during our stay - thank you and we look forward to working with you again in 2015.

If you would like details on any of the works featured in the slide show above, have any general enquiries about the fair or are interested in receiving details about future tours, please contact me at angeline@angelinecollingsart.com  


ART OVERLOAD - THE WEEK THAT WAS AND SOMETHING FOR THE WEEKEND ...

STOP THE PRESS!!!!

The Australian newspaper today had a special feature on Hong Kong in the WISH magazine. With Art Basel just around the corner, I can't help but take this opportunity to invite you to join Jenny Garber and I on what will be a luxury art trip like no other.

JOIN US ...

JOIN US ...

I was delighted to read about the Australian, Michael Lynch, CEO of the mammoth West Kowloon Cultural District project and learn about just how HK$24 billion will be spent across a large museum and 16 other major cultural venues. The mind boggles. Also featured is the architect of the stunning Upper House Hotel, Andre Fu. The Upper House is the venue for the farewell dinner for our trip.

Of course one can't talk about Hong Kong without talking about David Tang and the influence he has had on the dining and luxury retail scene there. On our trip, we will have the pleasure of dining at 2 of his fine establishments - dim sum at the stunning art deco decked out Island Tang and our welcome dinner at the private members China Club...

 

Art Month kicked off this week and, along with a plethora of exhibitions to view across Sydney over the coming month, there are also timely and insightful talks and panel discussions to get your teeth into... 

Wednesday night at the MCA … and it was a treat to hear the ever erudite Simon Mordant and active contemporary collector, James Roland discuss their take on philanthropy. Given that, had it not been for Simon and his wife, Catriona, we would not even HAVE an MCA today - it was a highly passionate and driven conversation about the lack of philanthropic support for not only the visual arts, but the arts in general. Government funding is clearly not the solution to the problem, as Simon has said frequently, more of those who have the means to be more involved SHOULD be more involved. The American model for the board compositions of public art institutions of 'GIVE, GET OR GET OFF' should be adopted here!! The current controversy of Transfield's sponsorship of the Sydney Biennale was also touched on and the general feel was that it is a very slippery slope to throw gifts and philanthropy into the same pool as corporate sponsorship. Nine artists have now withdrawn from participating in the Biennale.

Simon Mordant and James Roland in conversation @ the MCA

Simon Mordant and James Roland in conversation @ the MCA

Thursday night saw a bustling crowd celebrate the opening of Tim Maguire's new exhibition at Martin Browne Contemporary. The canvas works were supremely complimented with a darkened room of his lightbox works - truly hypnotic and a more defined and bold style is shining through. Lots of dots too!

Today Jenny and I enjoyed a wonderful catch up with CEO and Group Fairs Director for Art Fairs Australia, Barry Keldoulis - the man in charge of Sydney Contemporary and The Melbourne Art Fair. Currently working and travelling 7 days a week, Melbourne in August is shaping up to be magnificent with great local, NZ and South East Asian gallery support already in place. Mark your diary for 13 - 17 August and book your accommodation NOW! Last weekends ART13 in London was a great success, with strong sales and happy faces from the galleries and buyers! Congratulations on yet another triumph!

This coming weekend sees the 2nd instalment of SCULPTURE AT SAWMILLERS, a week long outdoor sculpture exhibition on Sydney's harbour foreshore at McMahons Point. Given that this is in my own backyard, I am thrilled that Elsa Atkin, fellow resident and dog walker, has once again gathered an extraordinary collection of artists and installed a breath taking outdoor show for locals and Sydneysiders. Running until the end of next weekend I urge you to hop on the ferry, grab a coffee at Bili's Cafe on Blues Point Road and head to this hidden pocket of bushland and lawn, right on the water. That's where I'll be at 8am tomorrow with my dog!

There is SO much to see and do in Sydney this month, I guess I'll sleep in April...

ACA EXCLUSIVE VIP ART BASEL TRIP IN THE PRESS

It's hard to believe that it's only 10 week until Art Basel Hong Kong kicks off. 

The bespoke programme that Jenny Garber of InArt and I have put together for our Private Escorted VIP trip is fabulous and we have some truly exceptional and exclusive art and luxury cultural experiences lined up.

The anticipation is building and, as you can see from the recent press we have enjoyed, the word is getting out there!

The Australian Financial Review - Life & Leisure, Fri 28 Feb, 2014

The Australian Financial Review - Life & Leisure, Fri 28 Feb, 2014


Australian Vogue Living, March 2014

Australian Vogue Living, March 2014

THE ART 'ISM' OF THE MOMENT...

As I said in my last gallery talk about the art market back in August, we are now slap bang in the middle of a new 'ism' in art.

Having said goodbye a long time ago to Post Expressionism, Modernism, Post Modernism and all the others… we now can confidently say we have embraced Commercialism

This is a fine article and a fine book that really sums it all up… enjoy!

Is Art Really A Good Investment? 

Bob Dylan @ Halcyon Gallery, London, Nov 2013

Bob Dylan @ Halcyon Gallery, London, Nov 2013

London Calling II - Dec 2013

What a trip! Still another week to go and it’s back across the Channel to London again and a final chance to fill in the art and gallery gaps before I headed home to the magical city of Oz, Sydney.

Deep breath, let’s go…

An AMAZING new find was Charlotte Colbert, a London passed photographer and screenwriter who was showing at the beautiful Gazelli Art House in Dover Street. The exhibition, A Day At Home explores femme-maison themes of real and imagined identity, notions of solitude, isolation and confinement. Colbert builds a film noir narrative into each of her images, which are then compressed into a single shot, imparting her work with a cinematic and surreal atmosphere. Working with traditional photographic methods and 35mm black and white film, these haunting images have stayed with me and I’d love to see Colbert’s audience grow. A true talent to watch. 

John Martin Gallery had a breathtaking sellout exhibition of paintings by Andrew Gifford. Two Cities: Paintings from Jerusalem and Ramallah is so much more than this humble title suggests. What started as a simple painting trip to Jerusalem in January 2012, evolved into a beautifully poetic and poignant journey through painting, history, identity, land, friendship, pride and heritage in these ancient lands and their surrounding towns and landscape. The significance of this exhibition has been officially recognized and will be touring to both Jerusalem and Ramallah in 2014 with the support of the Al Ma’mal Foundation for Contemporary Art, the A. M. Qattan Foundation and the British Council.

Gagosian's main gallery in Kings Cross was unfortunately closed for the holiday season but their street-front space in Mayfair was playing host to the world renowned architect, Frank Gehry's light sculptures. Created using metal wire, colour-ore Formica, silicon and wood, these giant fish were captivating. To walk amongst them and see them up close was yet another super treat, so was having the whole space to myself!

The physicality of painting and the surface was front and centre at Timothy Taylor Gallery in the current show, Hantaï, Hartung, Soulanges, Tàpies, on view till 18 Jan 2014. This is a stunning exhibition which brings together four of the key artists who were instrumental in the evolution of post-war European Abstraction. At a time when Paris continued to be the nexus of European art, literature and philosophy, the cultural scene in the US was also growing and increasing in confidence. This exhibition explores how these four artists sustained the project of Abstraction for over half a century by pushing the medium of painting and the painting surface to its very limits. A hands down museum quality show and it was such a treat to have had the chance to view it.

It was a complete change of pace next door at Hamilton Gallery who were exhibiting Daido Moriyama, the  most celebrated Japanese photographer from the Provoke Movement of the 1960's, . His images are so multi layered, visually and philosophically that it's hard to know where to begin. It is first best to perhaps understand that he was born in Osaka in 1938 and the historical and social significance of this is palpable in his work. The aftermath of WWII, industrialisation, unsettling cultural shifts and urbanisation are issues which all play out in his captivating images. Gallery owner, Tim Jefferies selected 16 images from the Artist's archive and these have been created as screenprints exclusively for the gallery in an edition of 3.

I'm never sure if I'm going to like the shows at The Saatchi Gallery, they've been more miss than hit for me. This time I was pleasantly surprised. The current Body Language show as well as New Order are well worth a visit if you are in London. I found it refreshing to see works by younger artists acknowledged and shown together with more established artists, such as Chantal Joffe. New Order was equally satisfying, I especially enjoyed Alejandro Guijarro photographs of blackboards from academic institutions showing the workings of quantum mechanics. They are philosophically complex images, dealing with issues of mental movement, the speed and repetition of thought, questioning and problem solving. My evening visit was capped off with a trip to the gallery's basement to visit one of my favourite pieces of contemporary art, Richard Wilson's oil installation… as it always does, it took my breath away.

My final day saw me enjoy an early morning visit to the recently re-hung Tate Britain and what a treat it was. The curators have certainly done a magnificent job by beautifully re-working the galleries and breathing new life into ever corner. Pure joy.

My final exhibition visit was initially planned as a purely indulgent treat. It was in the end, rather emotional. Somerset House's current show is called Isabella Blow, Fashion Galore! and it is wonderful. The exhibition thematically charts Blow's life through her extensive fashion, shoe and hat collection. I'm not going to go into detail here on who she was - look her up if you are interested. What I will say is that I had followed and admired her for years, we shared the same birthday (11 years apart) and she died on my wedding anniversary in 2007. Her incredible skill for spotting, mentoring, supporting and promoting young fashion talent (Alexander McQueen most famously) was extraordinary. Her fearlessness, creativity and boldness is something the world needs more of. Seeing Blow's exquisite personal collection of clothes, hats and shoes has brought her back into the public eye but the world is certainly a less colourful place without her.

OVERALL & GENERALLY

It was an incredibly exhausting, stimulating, fascinating and fulfilling 2 1/2 weeks 

Work by emerging artists (UK and international) exhibiting in London and Paris was exciting and seemed incredibly affordable

The lower end and blue chip art market is alive and well - the mid market is a struggle

Seeing painting, painting and MORE painting was BLISS

There are some great new, young galleries and gallerinas who are knowledgable, dynamic and BOLD!!   

Can I wait to get back to London & Paris? NO 

When do I think I might? October for Frieze and Frieze Masters et al - fingers crossed

London Calling ...

And so the end of my first week in London draws to a close and it's been a superb art filled experience. 

It all started with a trip to the Royal Academy to see if the media fuss swirling around the huge survey show Australia is warranted. Personally, the theme of the show is problematic on a number of levels, namely it's very narrow - landscape - that's it ... Because of this, huge swaths of Australian art and artists are missing, as are an equitable representation of women artists but perhaps that says more about the nature and culture of art in Australia. Conflicted I think best expresses my feeling about the show.

A short stroll down to St James Square brought me bang up to date with what's currently hot in the international art market, namely Russian Art on view at Christie's and then to White Cube to view the visually arresting images and sculpture of German born, LA based artist, Friedrich Kunath. Combining slap stick humour, pathos and metaphoric allegory, his images and ceramic painted Canadian otter sculptures, Kunath had me submersed in a dreamscape, presenting a world of shifting realities. I loved it!

Bond Street never fails to thrill and an early morning trip on a frosty Sunday morning didn't disappoint when I had a brush with Bob Dylan. His exhibition, Mood Swings is currently on view at Halcyon Gallery and housed in their galleries on both sides of the street are 3 separate bodies of work, composed of paintings, prints and 7 massive steel 'gate' sculptures. All very humorous and a complete surprise. My favourite series was of paintings and prints depicting faux magazine covers with lurid and amusing headlines ...  this is one I simply could not resist!

Bob Dylan @ Halcyon Gallery, London 24.11.13

It was a treat to catch up with the dapper and delightful Angus Haldane of Haldane Fine Art over lunch on Wednesday. Angus and I were comrades in arms at Sotheby's for a number of years and I truly value his view and take on the London market and all things arty. Interestingly the lower and tip top ends of the market are incredibly buoyant and healthy with the £20,000 - 100,000 proving problematic. With lots of travel and lecturing under his belt this year, I very much look forward to welcoming him to Sydney in August, 2014 - we're in for a treat!

Hahn / Cock by Katharina Fritsch on the Fourth Plynth @ Trafalgar Square

Tate Modern's galleries have had a re-jig since I was last here in 2011 and I have to say the new hang is fabulous. Beautifully themed and curated, I think this was my most pleasurable visit ever... 

Rounding out the week was the annual cocktail party for ex-Sotheby's colleagues, hosted beautifully by Alexandra Reece and Sasha Weld-Forester at Marlborough Fine Art on Albemarle Street. As part of the ex 1744 group, I loved catching up with Andre Zlattinger (now Head of Modern British Pictures at Christie's), Guy Vaisierie (currently at Linley) and James Murray now successfully art dealing and advising (www.jmurrayfineart.com). Boy did we have ALOT to catch up on. Again, they all said that the art market is powering ahead with activity across all categories, with contemporary being, unsurprisingly, top of the tree. Everybody wants in, including active Australian expats in London and Europe, Switzerland was specifically mentioned!

Now it's onto Paris on Monday to revisit some favourite art haunts, and I'm especially excited about visiting more recent gallery connections I've made at the art fairs in Hong Kong, Singapore and Sydney. It will be great to see them on their home turf!

A friend from home. Asprey's window, New Bond Street

A fun filled weekend with Garth Knight @ Paradise Lost

The wet weather didn't deter a hard core group of art lovers from visiting .M Contemporary over the weekend.

Saturdays Artist Talk with Garth generated a great deal of questions about his process and the ideas behind his work. He spoke about how each series leads on from the previous one and how they are all connected to each other and to him in a very deep and personal way. Garth's practice is very much a journey and he certainly took us into his world in a very beautiful and generous way.

Sunday saw a change of pace with the gallery filled with the headiness of scent and perfume as Garth and Catherine du Peloux Menage took us on an olfactory journey through Paradise Lost. By engaging this often forgotten sense, guests experienced the works in an altogether new and delightedly unexpected way.

Added to the pleasure of the weekend was meeting a new Garth Knight collector. An image of the beautiful Elephant will shortly be installed in her home in Melbourne.

All in all a wonderful weekend and thank you to everyone who was a part of it!

Artist, Garth Knight talking us through his process, Sat 16.11.13

Exploring the scents of Paradise Lost with Catherine du Peloux Menage, Sun 17.11.13

Garth Knight and Catherine du Peloux Menage (right) with guests at .M Contemporary, Sun 17.11.13

.M Contemporary are hosting their final Art & Wine Dinner for 2013 on Tuesday 26 November at 6.30pm. Click the link below for details. It promises to be a fabulous evening and a real treat to meet Natalia Bradshaw, Chair of Art Month, Sydney.

OH WHAT A NIGHT…!

It was a perfect warm Sydney evening as art lovers and collectors packed .M Contemporary for the opening night of Garth Knight's exhibition, Paradise Lost. Moshe Rosenzveig, Founder & Director of the Head On Photo Festival, the worlds 2nd largest photography festival, spoke so beautifully and eloquently about Garth's work and it was a tremendous treat to have him officially open the show. 

Huge thanks must go to Michelle, Louise and Paola for hosting everyone and for arranging a fabulous celebratory Artist's Dinner at Nino's so we could continue the festivities.

Click below to view more images from the opening night

SPECIAL EVENTS

Aligned with the current show, Paradise Lost, there are a number of special events at the gallery in the coming weeks, including:

Tomorrow, Sat 16 Nov at 2pm, Moshe returns to the gallery for a Q & A with Garth to delve deeper into the inspiration and influences that effect Garth's unique art practice.

Sun 17 Nov at 3pm, sought after perfume and scent expert, Catherine Du Peloux Menage joins Garth to explore the scents of Paradise Lost. Join us for what will be a unique and special experience.

Please click below for further details:

PRESS

AUSTRALIAN FINANCIAL REVIEW - FRI 15 NOV 2013

Life & Leisure Luxury Magazine, pg 22

Today's AFR Luxury magazine featured, Garth Knight collector, Parisian-based jeweller, Lorenz Baumer. As the Head of Fine Jewels for Louis Vuitton, Lorenz is recognised globally as a leading light in his field. Lorenz and Garth share a long standing working relationship and it is Lorenz's own jewellery designs that form the basis of and inspire Garth's intricate creations.

Garth Knight collector & collaborator, Lorenz Baumer, Head of Fine Jewels for Louis Vuitton, as featured in the AFR Luxury magazine, 15.11.13

It's Almost Opening Night!

The anticipation is building!

Here are some shots of the exhibition installation for Garth Knight as well as a lovely piece in the Art Collector online magazine ...

Garth and I are looking forward to welcoming you to the gallery tomorrow night!

Garth hanging the stunning Elephant

One Hundred and One Breaths, (selection)

Thank you Art Collector magazine!!

EXHIBITION OPENING THURSDAY 14 NOVEMBER GARTH KNIGHT, PARADISE LOS

 

THE EX HIBITIO N WILL BE OFFICIALLY OPENED BY

MOSHE ROSENZVEIG

FOUNDER & DIRECTOR OF THE HEAD ON PHOTO FESTIVAL

Finally the date is approaching and the amazing visual imagination of Garth Knight will be revealed at .M Contemporary in Sydney when the exhibition, Paradise Lost opens on 14 Nov at 6pm. This has been a long, and at times stressful, journey but I am delighted that we are in the final stretch and the thrill of opening night is in sight!

I invite everyone to come and see the show, meet Garth and participate in the many talks and events which will be held at the gallery through the duration of the show (15 Nov - 8 Dec).

Please visit www.mcontemp.com for a full listing of event details.

Click here to view the exhibition catalogue

 http://mcontemp.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/M_Contemp_Garth_Knight.pdf  

The exhibition installation begins on Monday 11 Nov and, if you pass by the gallery on Ocean Street, Woollahra, next week you will be able to view the Artist at work, transforming the front gallery with a stunning monumental site specific sculpture.

Extra special thanks must go to .M Contemporary's amazing team: Michelle Paterson, Louise Rush, Paola Laurenzi and Fiona Lanigan who continue to be so generous with their enthusiasm and time.

 

They Came, They Saw, They Did A Little Shopping... well quite a bit of shopping actually

SYDNEY CONTEMPORARY 13 

Carriageworks

19 - 22 SEPTEMBER. 2013

If the rumoured closure of Redfern train station in a bid to cope with the tsunami of 8,000 people trying to get into Carriageworks for Sydney Contemporary 13's Vernissage last Thursday night is even half true,  then I think we can confidently say that we have a major new addition to Sydney's art calendar.

 

Sydney Contemporary opened it's doors to VIP Collectors at 4pm, this was the calm before the storm!

Sydney Contemporary opened it's doors to VIP Collectors at 4pm, this was the calm before the storm!

It was an incredible 3 days and with an attendance number of over 28,000 people through the doors, an enormous congratulations must go to Tim Etchells, Barry Keldoulis and their incredible team for pulling it off. THANK YOU!    

 

IMG_0885.jpg

Having taken Monday off to recover from a severe case of AFF (Art Fair Fatigue) I'm now ready to gather my thoughts and share my experiences. 

As there is so much to cover, I'm breaking it down, and 'nut shelling' my fair highlights into 3 themes...

 1. HIGHLIGHTS FROM THE GALLERIES POPPING THEIR EXHIBITING CHERRY IN SYDNEY

I loved, loved loved seeing my favourite Scottish artist, Callum Innes' work at the booth of Hong Kong's most charming Frenchman, Edouard Malingue. Edouard's Gallery on Queens Road, Central is a haven of art and refined taste and it was an extra treat to be able to catch up with him during his brief time in Sydney.

Paragon Press, London exhibited, in addition to some stunning Anish Kapoor and Gary Hume works, a Grayson Perry etching which, for my money took the prize for SC13 Humour and Wit in Art Award. A truly whimsical experience.

Detail, Grayson Perry at Paragon Prints, London

Detail, Grayson Perry at Paragon Prints, London

Singapore's Art Plural Gallery was a definite highlight, especially the works of Ian Davenport, Qiu Jie,  Fabienne Verdier and Bernar Venet especially his monolithic sculpture which looked as if it had dropped from on high at the entry to Carriageworks. The gallery also enjoyed opening night sales for a Verdier painting (AU$70,000) and also a piece by gallery staple, Pablo Reinoso (AU$46,000).

Bernar Venet at Carriageworks, Art Plural, Singapore

Bernar Venet at Carriageworks, Art Plural, Singapore

With galleries in New York, Hong Kong and Singapore, the incredibly dapper Sundaram Tagore didn't hold back with his self named gallery presenting a survey exhibit of his top talents, including, Hiroshi Senju, Kim Joon (Drunken-Royal Copenhagen, sold, AU$17,000), Sohan Qadri (Untitled, sold, AU$71,000) and Robert Polidori

Viewing Kim Joon's work at Sundaram Tagore Gallery, New York, Hong Kong & Singapore, with Emma Hack at the VIP Collectors Preview

Viewing Kim Joon's work at Sundaram Tagore Gallery, New York, Hong Kong & Singapore, with Emma Hack at the VIP Collectors Preview

Katie de Tilly of 10 Chancery Lane, Hong Kong showed a diverse mix of important artists from her stable. My favourite of all her gallery heavy hitters was the poetic Dinh Q. Le (considered one of Vietnam's most significant contemporary artists) whose works explore the notion of layered and fragile memories.

 

Dinh Q. Le, Untitled 4 - 07, at 10 Chancery Lane, Hong Kong

Dinh Q. Le, Untitled 4 - 07, at 10 Chancery Lane, Hong Kong

Having fled Vietnam with his family in 1979 to a new life in Los Angeles after heavy fighting broke out between the Vietnamese and the Khmer Rouge near his village on the border with Cambodia, Dinh's works comment on 'how memories are recalled and how society archives the experience of human suffering'. 

2. JUICY TALENT - IN SEASON NOW! 

Armed with the privilege of having experienced the large international art fairs of Frieze, London, Art HK, Art Basel HK and Art Stage, Singapore, where there has usually been a small Australian contingent, I was most excited by the prospect of viewing, in my home town, contemporary Australian art en masse in an international art fair environment alongside strong work from overseas ... Not a lot to ask really!

I HAVE NOT BEEN DISAPPOINTED. 

Collectors viewing at Martin Browne, Sydney, SC 13

Collectors viewing at Martin Browne, Sydney, SC 13

In no particular order, the highlights for me were:

Craig Waddell's charming portraits of birds at Gallery 9. Each one named and lovingly and tenderly depicted in luscious oil paint, scoped onto the canvas like gelato.

Franceska by Craig Waddell, Gallery 9, Sydney Acquired by Artbank

Franceska by Craig Waddell, Gallery 9, Sydney

Acquired by Artbank

I could smell this gallery's booth before I could see the work! Deservedly, his show was almost a complete sell out and included Franceska (AU$7,500) which was acquired by Artbank as well as other pieces to some super swanky corporates.

Black Art Projects installation of Reko Rennie's Black Diamond series was stunningly snapped up, and rightly so (pieces sold at both the AU$7,700 and AU$28,500 level). With a foot in both Melbourne and Milan, moody, edgy and with just the right amount of attitude, I can't wait to see what project Black Art take on next...

Opening Night saw the engaging and delightful Daniel Agdag grinning from ear to ear at MARS Gallery's booth as his incredible, intricately cinematic paper contraptions (AU$4,400 each) were a sell out by 7.30pm.

Completely enthralled with Daniel Agdag and his paper contraptions. MARS Gallery, Melbourne

Completely enthralled with Daniel Agdag and his paper contraptions. MARS Gallery, Melbourne

Daniel's works transported me to the fantastical, industrial gothic film worlds of Fritz Lang, Terry Gilliam and David Lynch. Eccentric Wunderkammer for the 21st century.

Greg Semu's photographs at Alcaston Gallery stopped traffic and I hope this important young artist's career continues its trajectory north. His work Self Portrait with Side of P'ea was one of the first pieces I saw where I literally stopped and stared, amazing.

 

Greg Semu, Self Portrait with Side of P'ea, Alcaston Gallery, Melbourne

Greg Semu, Self Portrait with Side of P'ea, Alcaston Gallery, Melbourne

Sam Jinx, Babies sleeping soundly @ Sullivan & Strumpf ...

Sam Jinx, Babies sleeping soundly @ Sullivan & Strumpf ...

Leo Silitonga, Director of Jakarta's Umahseni Gallery, exhibited the visually arresting paintings of Ronald Manullang in which he has drawn on both historical and fictionalised elements to enhance the real and imagined events between Indonesia's first President, Soekarno and his 5th wife, the Japanese born Naoko Nemoto.

Umahesni's Gallery, Jakarta, SC13

Umahesni's Gallery, Jakarta, SC13

This gallery was one of the highlights for me and I hope Leo returns to our shores soon with even more work from this regionally significant art community.

 

Unsurprisingly, Michael Reid showed stella work which sold well. His artists included Joseph McGlennon (AU$8,800 for Thylacine Study No. 3) , Christian Thompson (AU$7,700) and Joan Ross. Total reported sales over the 3 days topped AU$250,000.

 

Joan Ross @ Michael Reid Gallery, Sydney

Joan Ross @ Michael Reid Gallery, Sydney

The 'Bumph' as we call it @ Michael Reid Gallery

The 'Bumph' as we call it @ Michael Reid Gallery

Congratulations to Michelle Paterson at .M Contemporary for both strong sales and the visually stunning and soaring installations of South African (and Venice Biennale representative), Lyndi Sale's works. Following a beautiful opening gallery exhibition last month, her suspended laser cut perspex disks at the entry to Carriageworks,

Lyndi Sales suspended perspex mirrored discs, as seen from the VIP Collector Lounge, .M Contemporary, Sydney

Lyndi Sales suspended perspex mirrored discs, as seen from the VIP Collector Lounge, .M Contemporary, Sydney

and also at the gallery's booth, where 159 / 295 symbolises the tragic Helderberg air crash in 1987 in which Sale's father was one of the victims, means her growing profile in Australia is now firmly cemented. 

3. A FRUITY MEGA-MIX OF EXTRAS I INDULGED IN!

Having extracted myself from the maelstrom of Carriageworks at about 8pm, I headed to the VIP after party at the above mentioned .M Contemporary! Digital media and performative artist, Garth Knight thrilled the VIP guests during a hypnotic performance

 

piece in which he applied his rope bondage skills to interact and engage with a live model. Knight will be the first Australian artist to exhibit at the gallery when his show, Paradise Lost opens on 15 November. (Disclosure, I am the shows curator)

 

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Those with still an ounce of stamina headed off to the QT Hotel where, word has it, 3am was the time most people turned into pumpkins ... 

Friday Chit Chat - Australia v's the rest of the world offered an interesting insight from gallerist Anna Schwartz, Art Advisor, Mark Hughes and collector Becky Sparks.

 

Australia v's The Rest of the World, panel discussion, SC13

Australia v's The Rest of the World, panel discussion, SC13

Hearing Anna was the highlight for me as she drew on her deep wealth of experience. In the panel's view, Australian collectors are not as parochial as one might think, which, if the final tally of sales is any indication, pretty much backs them up!

Saturday afternoons discussion on Whether Sydney was the art capital of Australia should have been so much better than it was. Instead, it was just the same old Melbourne / Sydney rivalry nonsense, complete with a segway into an indulgent speel into public institutions and the regional craft scenes. Not at all my cup of tea... 

What was more my cup of tea, actually, make that a soy latte... was earlier in the day at the VIP Brunch, hosted by the gorgeous Ursula Sullivan and Joanna Strumpf at their gallery in Zetland. The sun shone, the coffee brewed, the bubbly flowed and it was wall to wall VIPs at 9.30am. This MUST have been a first given the late night most people had experienced. With the support of VAULT magazine, the panel, chaired by the AFR's Katrina Strickland discussed the notion, The Gallery Is Dead, Long Live The Gallery. Artist Alex Seton, Carriageworks own Lisa Havilah, Collectors Simon Hayman and Terry Wu, as well as Mark Feary from Artspace really nutted out the problems, the issues and opened a window on how the world might look in the future, given the growing involvement of the internet and technologies like 3D printing within the art world.

The panel ... 

The panel ... 

My main take away was thinking about the concept of buying an Alex Seaton sculpture online, after which, he then sends me a link for me to print out on my 3D printer! It was such great fun that none of us wanted to leave, including Emma Hack, Tim Goodman, Jenny Garber and Satoshi Kinoshita...

Joshua Yeldham's talk, at ArtHouse Gallery's booth, late on Saturday afternoon was spell binding. He spoke generously about his life and art with an economy of words, so richly laced with emotion that he nearly had us all in tears. 

Joshua Yeldham @ Arthouse Gallery, Sydney, SC13

Joshua Yeldham @ Arthouse Gallery, Sydney, SC13

Joshua Yeldham, speaking so eloquently about his artistic journey and sense of place. SC13

Joshua Yeldham, speaking so eloquently about his artistic journey and sense of place. SC13

If any Australian artist is capable of expressing a sense of place, both externally and  internally, then it is Yeldham. 

I wish my final talk on Sunday afternoon, Art into Fashion / Fashion into Art had been longer as, having heard the panel dissect various aspects of the art and fashion worlds, I was just starting to formulate some creative and critical thoughts and questions, when the session came to an end. At least I got to hear Akiro Isogawa describe himself as a 'bulls**t artist', at which point, Kylie Kwong, sitting across the aisle from me, nearly fell off her seat! 

IN SUMMARY

Was SC13 a success? 

Absolutely.

Are there a couple of teething problems to iron out? (Don't you just love a mixed metaphor?)

Of course, that's to be expected.

Are Tim Etchells and Barry Keldoulis capable of topping this event in Melbourne next year?

You bet your cashmere socks they are! 

(Sale results obtained from various sources) 

SYDNEY CONTEMPORARY 13

further visual highlights ...

All The Fun Of The Fair - Sydney Contemporary, 19 to 22 September, 2013

Let's all start with a huge exhale of breath!

FINALLY Sydney has it's very own contemporary art fair which is so LONG overdue it's not funny.

For far too long Sydney art-sters and the art-eratti have been starved of exposure and access to contemporary art from overseas, with local commercial galleries sticking to a traditional and rather formulaic exhibition format and programming schedule, dominated by a revolving roster of similar and familiar artists. Not to mention all those poor art school undergraduates who generally only see international contemporary art through the porthole of a computer screen. 

THANK GOD then for Tim Etchells, Barry Keldoulis and the team at Sydney Contemporary!

83 galleries from across Australia and around the world are breaking out of the white cube and breathing creative energy and buzz into Carriageworks for 3 fabulous days and 4 sparkling nights of what is gearing up to be a blistering weekend of business and art overload.

I'll be there for the duration and will be posting, my thoughts, photos and top tips throughout, as well as keeping you informed on my take on the art of the deal!

So people, I suggest that you strap yourselves in and let the games begin! 

 

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