Saturday, May 18, 2013

DREAMING IN PUBLIC: Sheba Chhachhi, Araya Rasdjarmrearnsook, Jakkai Siributr and Hema Upadhyay (May 15 - July 25 2009 at Gallery Soulflower)

'...The process of dreaming can refer to one’s unconscious thought processes, the amorphous and infinite world of the imagination, desire and ambition in terms of change, extrasensory perception, ideal experience and much more in terms of history and theory. The idea of public – on the other hand – is distinct from general notions of the private & the personal, commonly afforded to the ‘state of dreaming’. Often, ideas of public comprise community and consensus...'

EVERYTHING: Julia Schwadron (January 1 - 31 2012 at H Project Space)

NOTHING IS TRUE: Lisa Brown (September 14 - October 12 2011 at H Project Space)

H Project Space is very pleased to announce a site-specific installation by the UK-born artist Lisa Brown. Nothing is True responds to the particular qualities and architectural details of H Project Space as the artist allowed this 19th century, colonial-style room determine her decisions. With a minimal use of materials, Brown’s installation draws our attention to a series of inter-relationships: inside and out, the gallery and the built environment, and art and the world at large.

HARARE BEYOND WORDS: EMERGING ART FROM ZIMBABWE, curated by Valerie Kabov (January 5 - 31 2012 at H Gallery)

The works of Brian Banda, Zacharaha Magasa, Wycliff Mundopa, Terence Musekiwa and Moffatt Takadiwa are odes to the city they love as each tease out rhythmic, urbane and deeply human polyphonies from everyday life and its objects in Harare. Mundopa and Banda focus on the lives of women: Mundopa creates beautiful mono-prints, drawings, and collages while Banda elevates discarded cookware into dignified and emotive sculptures. Takadiwa distils the poverty and privations of life in contemporary Zimbabwe with surprising combinations of functional objects. And Magasa captures both a love of music and the spirit of Harare with paintings made from the multi-colour remnants of plastic containers which are distinctly local. Musekiwa brings traditional Zimbabwean stone carving into the contemporary world, blending it with issues of labour and home-life.

Monday, April 08, 2013

SONGS OF THE CITY: Michael Lee and Olivier PinFat (October 13 - December 31 2011 at H Gallery)

H Gallery is very pleased to announce an exhibition of two artists who explore the urban environment in radical contrast. Singapore-based Michael Lee creates cool, analytical renderings of lost, destroyed and impossible cities which examine these sites as sources of individual desires, fantasy and collective memory and need. Olivier Pin-Fat’s photographs of his adopted home of Bangkok are inflected by drug-induced visions, a profound sense of the animistic, and disruptions of the photographic surface. While Lee dissects ethereal knowledge of places and spaces, Pin-Fat registers the outer reaches of subjective experience. At some point, the works of both artists meet.

SOMEWHERE IN THE DISTANCE: Yvonne Hindle, Mit Jai Inn and Chat Jenchitr (September 8 - October 9 2011 at H Gallery)

H Gallery is very pleased to announce an exhibition that explores aspects of the contemporary significance of painterly abstraction. Yvonne Hindle is influenced by Taoist concepts of time and flux and paints with a baroque yet romantic aesthetic. Mit Jai Inn creates canvases of subtly symbolic shapes and with gently rendered geometric surfaces, sometimes double-sided. And Chat Jenchitr abstracts metaphors from Buddhist philosophy with an often dazzling use of color.

Sunday, April 07, 2013

BODY BORDERS: Pinaree Sanpitak, a 3-part exhibition (August 6 - September 4 2011 at H Gallery)

Three of Bangkok's most established contemporary art venues are very pleased to announce an ambitious collaborative showcase of Pinaree Sanpitak's recent works. Two interactive installations and a series of paintings reveal new interests and developments in Pinaree's on-going exploration of the symbolic and experiential dimensions of corporeality.

The body - which has been a continuing focus in my work for the past 20 years - explores sensory experience and perception. Recently, my son’s interest in pursuing studies in fashion design has led me to look at the body through the ideas of adornment: How the body is epitomized or minimized. What matters to me is how the body becomes a site of transit, contemplation and understanding. The body - part or whole - ponders, wonders and challenges.

Saturday, March 23, 2013


The first paragraph of my review of Alice Maher's major show 'Becoming' at the Irish Museum of Modern Art, published in the April edition of Frieze 2013.

This selection of works by Alice Maher, stretching from when she emerged in the late 1980s to today, was not a standard retrospective as such. Instead, the exhibition figured new relationships within the artist’s oeuvre, a rationale that was made clear by its title, ‘Becoming’. Maher’s interest in capturing the material qualities of transformation and the capacity of images and objects to register beguiling, resonant interest is not conducive to a historic or academic overview. Furthermore, as curator Sean Kissane notes in his accompanying essay, ‘Becoming’ contributes to the ongoing narrative of IMMA’s temporary space at the historic Earlsfort Terrace (which, among other uses, was the premises of University College Dublin for more than 100 years). One could, however, also argue that the significance of Maher’s career for contemporary art in Ireland over the last 20 years is not reducible to the details of its parts...

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Myself and Steve Dutton's - of the University of Lincoln - exhibition of 20 artists has been extended to May 26th at the Bangkok Art and Culture Center. It's titled 'Possession (1)' and artists often contact me after a show opens. Here are two works by Justin Mills:

'God As Birth, Life, Death', 2010 rubber-modified bitumen, oil, acrylic, on canvas, 100 x 100 cm (credit: Rirkrit Tiravanija, 'Born, Live, Die', 2010, printed matter on a table)

'God As 18th Century Persian Calligraphy', 2010, rubber-modified bitumen, oil, acrylic, on canvas, 100 x 100 cm (credit: Abdul Majid Talighani, Persian Shikasteh Style Calligraphy, 18th Century)

Liam Morgan sent me the following image and email this morning:

It's a found-object piece I did entitled 1992.  The found objects are a bunch of negatives I found in an abandoned building, along with some bits of old wood I came across.  The pictures were from the construction of the building; they were taken in 1992. The photographer is unknown, but it would have been someone from the construction company taking 'evidence' photographs of the work in progress.  Of course the building was never finished. 

They were taken with one of those cameras which stamps the date on the negatives.  So, assuming the camera was set up properly, we know that the images were made on Feb 26th, 1992 and the negatives sat in the unfinished building until I picked them up 20 years later.  There are a lot of aspects of this that interest me.  Initially, that these were 'disposable images'; they were made to demonstrate evidence of a problem.  Once the problem was described to whoever needed to know about the problem, the images were no longer useful to anyone.  But because they are physical objects, their life went beyond their intended purpose and they changed and took on a life of their own.  And then I came across them and turned them into something very different from their original author's intended lot-in-life.  

In someways this is a pondering on the massive paradigm shift we have seen in the way people produce and consume photographs; images have become a means of communicating experience in (almost) real-time, rather than something captured to be kept and reminisced at some point in the future.  They are a spoken conversation, rather then the written letter they once were.  In fact, the photographs that make up 1992 were made in a similar spirit to how many people create photographs now; they are unintenional fore-runners of this great digital shift of visual literacy.