Thursday, May 21, 2015

Seung Yul Oh's new public artwork

Seung Yul Oh's OnDo, a temporary public sculpture at Ballantyne's Park on Auckland's Dominion Road, which is known for its Asian restaurants. You can read a review of the piece here.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

A coastal walk of art

Len Lye's Wind Wand is a striking and much-loved feature of New Plymouth's coastal walkway, which also includes John Reynolds' Big Wave Territory. This work celebrates Taranaki's rich cultural landscape, directing passers by to various local and regional destinations - the Mountain, Paritutu Rock and Sugar Loaf Island, SPOT X and The Forgotten World Highway. Using Transit New Zealand's road design format and materials, the high reflection sign also provides cultural points of departure, including artistic legacies, such as the writing of celebrated author Ronald Hugh Morrieson and Len Lye's kinetic sculpture.
Images: Len Lye's Wind Wand and John Reynolds, Big Wave Territory, Coastal Walkway, New Plymouth

New Plymouth's coastal walkway: a lesson for city planners on how to create social space

Visitors to the new Len Lye Centre and refurbished Govett-Brewster Art Gallery have another treat in store for them - New Plymouth's coastal walkway. Like many New Zealand cities, New Plymouth was cut off from its waterfront by a four-lane highway and railway line until a plan was hatched to buy up properties along the foreshore and create an elegantly landscaped walkway for local residents and visitors to the city. Created through a multi-disciplinary approach (urban design, landscape architecture, environmental heritage, public art and town planning) it is a brilliant example of how to create social space for residents and support other creative city agendas such as tourism. It's a must-see piece of social engineering.
Image: New Plymouth's coastal walkway offering views of the sea and back over the city to Mt Taranaki

Monday, May 18, 2015

Len Lye Centre: a building inspired by the movement of light

The new Len Lye Centre will open in new Plymouth on 25 July alongside the refurbished Govett-Brewster Art Gallery. The complex will combine a museum of contemporary art with New Zealand's first institution dedicated to a single artist, the pioneer filmmaker and kinetic sculptor Len Lye. Designed by Patterson Associates, the new Centre features a mirror-finished, light-reflecting facade inspired by the movement of light in Lye's sculptures and films - a pitch-perfect research and exhibition centre for an artist who once said: "My work I think is going to be pretty good for the 21st century."
Image: Len  Lye Centre designed by Patterson Associates, Auckland

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Rebecca Baumann's Sydney projects

As the exhibition Rebecca Baumann + Brendan van Hek: Colour Restraint draws to and end at Campbelltown Arts Centre, the Museum of Contemporary Art has announced that Baumann will curate the next MCA Art Bar which takes place during VIVID, Sydney's festival of light, music and ideas. Working with a collective of artists, Baumann has also created a new work for VIVID that will transform the MCA facade into a series of sound and colour 'machines' that create a continuously morphing listening and viewing experience. We will report on the Art Bar and Festival later this month.
Images: installation views of a commissioned work by Rebecca Baumann and Brendan van Hek in the exhibition Colour Restraint at Campbelltown Arts Centre

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Michael Zavros' art magazine covers

Michael Zavros is on the cover of two Australian art magazines - Art Monthly and Art Collector. The cover images are of photographs from his solo show presented by Starkwhite at this year's edition of Art Basel Hong Kong and produced through a collaboration with world's highest paid model, Sean O'Pry

Art Monthly also contains a 6-page spread on Zavros by QAG|GOMA curator Peter McKay on the artist's new interest in photography and performance where he acts as director working with models, commercial photographers, lighting technicians and make-up artists. McKay also covers Zavros' first foray into performance presented by starkwhite (with Rolls Royce) at the 2014 Melbourne Art Fair. Zavros worked with Australia's superstar models the Stenmark twins, a Rolls Royce Wraith, and an endless supply of MZ-monogrammed chocolates offered as gifts to guests at the vernissage.
Image: covers of the current issues of Art Monthly and Art Collector Art Collector  (top and middle) and a view of Zavros' performance Forty at the 2014 Melbourne Art Fair

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Starkwhite announces representation of new artists

We are delighted to announce the representation of three artists - Laith McGregor (AUS), Fiona Pardington (NZ) and Yuk King Tan (HK). McGregor will stage his first solo show with us in May, followed by Pardington in June and Tan in 2016. We will profile each of the artists in advance of their shows, but in the meantime go to our website for images of their work
Image: Laith McGregor, AIAIG, 2014, pencil on paper (top); Fiona Pardington, Mokosoi/Ylang Ylang, Fiji, 2014, pigment ink on Hahnemuhle photo rag; Yuk King Tan, The Beautiful Game, 2008, mixed media and firecrackers, installation detail

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Billy Apple® satellite shows

A number of Billy Apple satellite shows are being presented in Auckland, timed to coincide with the survey exhibition Billy Apple®: The Artist Has To Live Like Everybody Else at the Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tamaki. 

First up was SUCK, the first section of a two-part exhibition, Poetry in Motion, curated by Artspace director Misal Adnan Yildiz. Featuring a Suck sculpture and four small off-set lithographs on canvas of men with erections, perfectly centered on each wall, the exhibition transitioned into Poetry in Motion, a group show with with a lineup of artists including Billy Apple®, Art & Language, Bruce Barber, Yoko Ono, Martha Rosler and Laurence Weiner. This link takes you to a review of SUCK.

The Artspace show was followed by BILLY APPLE SOUND WORKS at Te Uru which gathers together, for the first time, sound works produced by Apple in collaboration with composers such as Jonathan Besser, Annea Lockwood, John Osborne and Nam June Paik.

Around the same time, Starkwhite launched its contribution to the city-wide satellite shows. Curated by Mary Morrison, TOTEM presents Billy Apple alongside Arnold Manaaki Wilson. Using the golden ratio the artist has divided the two columns in Starkwhite into artist's cut and dealers's cut. Starkwhite's share is white and remains part of the gallery architecture, and Apple demonstrates his share by painting it yellow, like a 3-D bar graph. Arnold Wilson is represented with three pou whenua of maori ancestral figures - Haumia, the god of wild, uncultivated things and her children Rangitiina and Tiniia. Grouped together they signify regeneration, emphasising the need to take care of nature's ecosystems.

You can read the curators rationale for the juxtaposition of the two artists here.

Image: Billy Apple SUCK, installation view, Artspace (top); artwork for SOUND WORKS at Te Uru (middle);  TOTEM, installation view, Starkwhite (bottom)

The Artist Has To Live Like Everybody Else

The Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tamaki is currently showing Billy Apple®: The Artist Has To Live Like Everybody Else, an exhibition surveying work produced during a career spanning over 50 years.

Billy Apple was 'born' in London in 1962, the same year he graduated from the Royal College of Art, when the 26 year old artist changed his name and bleached his hair. By reinventing himself, Apple sought to establish a new relationship between the the artist and everyday life by exploring how he could be redefined as a 'product' with his own distinct brand. 

His commitment to testing the boundaries between art and life continue to this day. In 2007 Billy Apple® registered his name as a trademark. He is now involved in various projects that explore the legal concept of intellectual property by bringing his art brand into the market place. As Apple says, he is a brand looking for product and the survy show includes recent examples of this move, such as his Billy Apple Cider produced through a collaboration with Saatchi & Saatchi's Derek Lockwood.

Apple's contributions to the history of pop and conceptual art have been recognised internationally, with a major two-part survey at Rotterdam's Witte de With Centre for Contemporary Art in 2009, curated by Nicholaus Schafhausen. He is also represented in the Walker Art Centre's forthcoming survey of pop art opening in Minneapolis in 2016. 

Curated by Christina Barton, Billy Apple®: The Artist Has To Live Like Everybody Else runs to 21 June 2015. 
Image: Billy Apple (above), Billy Apple Cider (middle) and Billy Apple Art Free for the Taking, 2015 (below), a free multiple which is being snapped up by visitors to the the exhibition at the Auckland Art Gallery 

Monday, May 11, 2015

Starkwhite blog is back online

Following a three-month hiatus, we have relaunched our blog. We will continue to post reports on our artists and our programme along with news from around the globe, but with a focus on developments in the Asia-Pacific region (including the Pacific-rim).

We will post items several times a week, but not every day as we did in the past, and well preview blog posts on Instagram (you can follow us at @starkwhite).

This week we'll report on new additions to our stable of artists, Billy Apple's must-see survey exhibition at the Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tamaki (and city-wide Apple satellite shows), and spin-offs from our participation in this year's edition of Art Basel Hong Kong. 

Monday, February 9, 2015

Martin Basher's Jizzy Velvet

Martin Basher's Jizzy Velvet continues this week at Starkwhite, through to 7 March 2015.
Images: installation views of Martin basher's Jizzy Velvet.

Friday, January 9, 2015

A new flag for New Zealand?

Image: Michael Smythe's design for a New Zealand flag based on Gordon Walters' koru paintings.

New Zealand celebrates Waitangi Day

Image: David Hatcher's Waitangi, First Article, English (as signed), 2004.

Thursday, January 1, 2015

New director of Art Basel Hong Kong announced

Adeline Ooi is the new director of Art Basel Hong Kong, replacing outgoing director Magnus Renfrew. Formerly the head of Art Basel's VIP Relations for S E Asia, she takes up her new position in January, two months out from the third edition of Art Basel Hong Kong. Read more...
Image: Adeline Ooi, director of Art Basel Hong Kong

Happy New Year

All the best for 2015 from the team at Starkwhite.
Image: Billy Apple's Brand New

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Summer hours at Starkwhite

Starkwhite is closed for the summer holiday period re-opening on 13 January and by appointment from the 5th. Our first show in 2015 is by Martin Basher.
Image: Installation view of Martin Basher's last show at Starkwhite

Friday, December 19, 2014

Blutopia at Starkwhite

Tonight we launch a new Inhouse designed publication by John Reynolds, with writing by Laurence Simmons seeking to unravel some of the mysteries of blueness. 

Simmons says: "Blue is as moody as we all are. It can almost mean anything. The colour of vibrant skies; the undisputed colour of heaven, but also of the cold, bruised skin of death. It is the signature of plainness in blue denim jeans, the peasantry in the Mao suit of communism, the law in police uniforms, the earnestness of bluestockings, the sign of the Virgin Mary and even John Key. Of course, the bluest blues have always been found in painting: it was lapis lazuli, the vivid blue rock from Afghanistan, that lit up Renaissance Italian painting becoming the signature shade of the Virgin Mary’s mantle; and Yves Klein’s International Klein blue that bound the pigment to the canvas for a bluer blue, at once more material and more abstract. With ‘Blutopia’ John continues that long tradition of painting in his boisterous exploration of the associations and hues of blue. He exquisitely teases out the contradictions of blue, its mercurial nature. For blue is the colour that both reassures and intimidates us. As Derek Jarman in his last film, made shortly before his death from AIDS, declared 'blue is an open door to the soul, an infinite possibility of becoming tangible'”.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Starkwhite on Instagram

We have joined the Instagram set and you can follow us at where you will find this image featuring as our latest post - our place photographed by Shanghai-based artist Jin Jiangbo (making the familiar strangely unfamiliar).

Monday, December 8, 2014

Capturing all the world's moments

Instagram as an artistic medium was the subject of one of the sessions in this year's Art Basel Miami Beach Talks programme, featuring four panelists with a combined 1.6 million followers. Amalia Ulman took the stage first, describing how she had created a fictional online narrative around the character who appears in selfies on the amaliaulman Instagram feed. Simon de Pury was next up saying he uses the service to catalogue pieces and items that he finds beautiful, followed by Hans Ulrich Obrist who talked about his handwriting project, a massive series where artists and cultural figures write short phrases on post it notes for his Instagram feed. Klaus Biesenbach then explained how Instagram helped him get over his aversion to revealing anything about himself, and co-founder of Instagram Kein Systrom wrapped up the session saying "our mission is to capture all the world's moments, but our core value is to inspire creativity."
Image: James Franco's post-it note for Hans Ulrich Obrists' The Handwriting Project.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Billy Apple and Artspace support Artists for Kobane benefit auction

At the opening of the first show by new director Adnan Yildiz (tomorrow at 6pm), Artspace will present  a contribution from Billy Apple towards Artists for Kobane, a global benefit auction organised by Hito Steyerl and Anton Vidokle in solidarity with refugees from Kobane, Shengal and many other towns and areas in northern Syria and Iraq who have been displaced by IS attacks and provisionally sheltered in museums, construction sites or tents. Proceeds from this auction will go towards providing tents, winter clothes, electric stoves, blankets and diapers mainly to the municipality of Suruc, where around 50,000 refugees from Kobane live.
Images: Billy Apple, Art For Kobane, 2014, 382 x 618 x 25mm, UV impregnated ink on canvas; Billy Apple, Basic Needs, 2014,  618 x 382 x 25 mm, UV impregnated ink on canvas