Posts Tagged ‘London’


April 26, 2009  |  Animation, art, News, Video  |  Comments Off

Onwards from AKQA on Vimeo.

Running obsessed British illustrator, artist, and toy junkie JAMES JARVIS brings his passion for "runner's high" and the moving line together in this amazing animation for NIKE. Now if only a network would grow a pair and sign him to a full-length series...

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March 3, 2009  |  art, Banksy, Graffiti, London, News, Street Art, Street Life  |  Comments Off


BAKSY's back in 2009 with a couple fresh hits in Fogtown. Unsurprisingly, his sense of humor remains undaunted by these dark days...



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February 19, 2009  |  art, London, News  |  Comments Off


Representing two diametrically opposed visual dialectics, the twin solo shows by eighty-one-year-old American painter CY TWOMBLY ("The Rose") and forty-six-year-old Japanese pop artist TAKASHI MURAKAMI ("New Paintings") currently on display at mega gallerist LARRY GAGOSIAN's twin London outposts (Brittania Street and Davies street respectively) create an incredibly exciting dynamic when considered in tandem. A progenitor of graffiti-style writing as fine art, Twombly earned his art world stripes in the late 1960s with challenging paintings depicting loose text-based scrawlings reminiscent of early bathroom stall graffiti. Murakami, currently the high priest of Pacific Rim postmodern Pop, is literally a product of his consumer-centric environment who both seeks to achieve the impossibly clean aesthetic of product in his artwork while simultaneously commodifying his art as product in and of itself. While the two bodies of work share little in common from a technical standpoint, the disparate shows are united in their visceral use of pulsating color. While Twombly's five monumental rose paintings are loose and primal in their execution with color employed as a prime and raw edged emotional force, Murakami's works are so tightly rendered as to appear silk-screened with colors employed as pure eye candy and reminiscent of the hues found in a toy store. Located within walking distance of one another, the disparate exhibitions make for a hell of an uplifting walking tour of the Old Country for those lucky enough to be able to still afford plane tickets these days, let alone the ever-elusive price of ownership. HAVE A LOOK: Read More

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February 11, 2009  |  art, Damien Hirst, London, News  |  Comments Off

Hirst's message to the haters...

Not only did DAMIEN HIRST, the most controversial and highest paid living figure in the art world redefine how business is done late last year with his groundbreaking Sotheby's auction, he's managed to thumb his nose at the world of retail this week by opening a second London shop in the middle of the 21st Century Great Depression:

"Damien Hirst has defied the slump in U.K. consumer spending by opening a second shop in London. Other Criteria, the U.K. artist’s publishing and merchandising company, started the store this week at 14 Hinde Street in the Marylebone district. It sells works including some by Hirst himself ranging from his keyrings at 3.50 pounds ($5) to prints showing pills on mirror glass shelves, from an edition of 125, at 4,000 pounds ($5,800) each.

The first branch of Other Criteria opened in October in Bond Street next to Sotheby’s. The previous month, the auction house staged Hirst’s 111.5 million-pound sale, “Beautiful Inside My Head Forever.” Since then, U.K retailers have suffered in the economic slump. Woolworths Group Plc, MFI Group Ltd. and Zavvi Group were chains that collapsed and closed stores.

“Other Criteria makes objects and books created by artists to an exceptional standard,” said Hirst in an e-mailed statement. “I don’t think art has ever been as popular as it is today and Other Criteria aims to sell affordable art of the highest quality to everyone who wants it.” Click HERE to continue reading...

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February 10, 2009  |  art, Art & Commerce, London, News  |  Comments Off

Jeff Koons' "Stacked" was the prize pig at Sotheby's evening sale selling for $4,136,939...

Last year saw the art market operating at unprecedented highs with works by blue chip artists being snapped up as commodities in an array of auctions that made the heads of even seasoned dealers spin. Of course, by year's end Damien Hirst had claimed the title of "ultimate master of the game" with his masterfully timed, record setting "Beautiful Inside My Head Forever" Sotheby's auction at the precise moment the entire worldwide financial market threw a rod and seized. Since then auction houses have been in the kind of despair heretofore known only to the American auto industry while the art market in general has slowed considerably in keeping with the beleaguered economy. The International Asian Art Fair scheduled to take place during this year's NYC-based Armory show in NYC was even cancelled due to financial concerns and was quickly followed suit by the Moscow World Fine Art Fair (May) and the Salzburg Fine Art Fair (August) which were killed off entirely for 2009. Needless to say, the February auctions by Sotheby's, Christies, and Phillips de Pury that began in London on February 5th and run through the 13th are off to a promising start with a smaller, more carefully curated collection bringing in nice returns (the Sotheby's evening sale brought in $25,785,250 alone) and brightening expectations for this year's art market considerably in the process:

"Predictions of an art market meltdown were confounded in London this week as six sales of impressionist, modern and contemporary art at Christie's and Sotheby's turned in solid results.

The auction houses managed to restore confidence to a jittery market with successful sales by radically shrinking the size of the catalogue and lowering estimates compared with last year. Some distress selling is, however, beginning to filter through.

Among the week's highlights were a classic impressionist painting by Monet that fetched £11.2m, a Degas sculpture that sold for £13.3m and a carved stack of cartoon-like animals by Jeff Koons that made £2.8m. The day sales, which offer more moderately priced works, also proved successful.

"We feel a lot better than we did a week ago," said James Roundell, a London dealer. "At best, people thought the sales would be patchy. These results send a positive message to the market." Click HERE to continue reading...

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December 4, 2008  |  Art & Commerce, Banksy, London, News  |  Comments Off


Just in time for Christmas shopping, London's PICTURES ON WALLS has announced a new BANKSY print commemorating his Tesco mural in Shoreditch (now covered in protective plastic) is set to go on sale on December 6th. The signed and numbered silkscreen will be available—alongside a number of other prints we could care less about—via a lottery system whereby would-be buyers can purchase a lottery ticket for £1 GBP (up to 20 per person), with all proceeds going to Sight Savers, an international anti-blindness charity, that will ensure them a CHANCE to snag the actual print when it's released. Unfortunately for international Banksy fans, tickets can only be purchased in person at POW. Winning consumers will be chosen randomly, and the first four names drawn get the print for free. Not a bad deal considering this thing might end up putting your kid through college someday (when people start buying art again)...


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December 2, 2008  |  Graffiti, London, News, Street Art  |  Comments Off

PATRICK McNEIL and PATRICK MILLER, the formerly anonymous street art duo known as FAILE blew the doors off their "Lost in Glimmering Shadows" solo show of new work at LAZARIDES GALLERY last month and the BBC's new street art show "Blast" took notice, interviewing the pair for the first time on camera...

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December 2, 2008  |  art, Design, London, News  |  Comments Off

"Kanye West is on the phone, he'll take two..."

The most retro-futuristic place to have a pint in old London is unfortunately the prohibitively members-only HOME HOUSE where the British-Iraqui architect ZAHA HADID recently installed her eye-popping, Jetsons-esque SPACE BAR. Sculpted in metal and finished in matching silver leather all wrapped in a deep coat of glossy automotive metalflake enamel, this to-die-for watering outpost when contrasted by the club's vintage 250-year-old interior could easily double as the set of the finale of Kubrick's 2001...

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November 26, 2008  |  art, Art & Commerce, Damien Hirst, London, News  |  Comments Off

Damien faces the global economic crisis with his game face—and skull—intact...

After a record-breaking solo auction at SOTHEBY’S in September that raised a record $200 million USD, DAMIEN HIRST has announced this week that he’s laying off half of his staff of London-based assistants that create the bulk of his art in a factory-style setting under his Science Ltd. studio umbrella. Having explained in July that he would cease production of some of his most (in)famous series of works including the spin, butterfly, and medicine cabinet lines, after the last offerings of each were sold at Sotheby’s, Hirst has scaled back his workforce accordingly, perhaps in anticipation of upcoming artwork that he promises will be more painterly and hands-on with less emphasis on the manufactured sculptural tableaux he’s become famous for. Around 20 of Hirst’s assistants who are earn a reported $30K USD each, have been let go, and although workers have been told not to speak to the press, the artist’s spokesperson Jude Tyrrell explained, “As previously stated by Damien, he is finishing a number of bodies of works which is why temporary contracts have not been renewed. We have to be mindful of the current economic climate and how this may affect us in the future." After all, art, above all else, must reflect one’s times, no?

In other Hirst news, have a look at Damien’s commentary on his recent entry into the BRITISH MUSEUM’s current “Statuephilia” show and the skull as a metaphor in his art:

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November 13, 2008  |  art, Graffiti, London, News, Openings, Street Art  |  Comments Off


After rocketing into the stratosphere of the underground art world in the past few years, the anonymous collaborative street art duo known only as FAILE is making huge waves across the pond with the debut of "Lost in Glimmering Shadows," a show of ambitious multimedia work at London's starmaking LAZARIDES GALLERY. Located in the Lilian Baylis Old School, a special offsite non-gallery venue chosen to maximize the impact of the show's presentation, the vast array of large and huge-scale paintings and sculptures are radiant in their new home, owing much to gallery impresario STEVE LAZARIDES' knack for spectacle. Introducing a new Native American theme to their work, Faile are returning to their early aesthetic influences growing up in the Southwest by channeling appropriated Pop cultural renderings of American Indian culture into their trademark heavily layered work in a pointed commentary on "the expanse of contemporary commercialism at the expense of society's connection with nature and spirit." Explosive color is a unifying theme throughout the show, the focal point of which is a series of impressive new "collage" paintings, and carries through to the beautiful, carved 5-foot-tall Native American wooden prayer wheels engraved with a mix of Faile's trademark Americana iconography, and the smaller wooden boxes bearing more of the same. More subdued were the round palette paintings that mimicked Native American pottery and baskets in both shape and pattern and interwoven with Faile's graphic messaging. With prices ranging from $7,000—100,000 USD and work selling as fast as the gallery can take orders, it's obvious that the world of street art is thus far proving recession proof amid the global economic meltdown. Londoners take note, the show is only on display until November 16th, so don't sleep. HAVE A LOOK: Read More

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