A version of the V&A’s exhibition Balenciaga, Shaping Fashion is now showing at the Bendigo Art Gallery, Bendigo, Victoria, Australia, until 10 November 2019. The Spanish couturier, whose female dress and master tailoring was admired by Coco Chanel and Christian Dior, was one of the most innovative and influential fashion designers of the 20th century. The Australian exhibition shows highlights of the V&A’s display including garments crafted by Balenciaga from the 1950s and 1960s—arguably the most creative period of his career, when he dressed some of the most renowned women of the time—through to pieces designed by protégés and contemporary designers working in the same innovative way today. The exhibition features examples of Balenciaga’s revolutionary shapes—the tunic, sack, baby doll and shift dresses—all of which remain style staples today, and marks the centenary of the opening of Balenciaga’s first fashion house in San Sebastian, and the 80th anniversary of the opening of his famous fashion house in Paris.
A free one-room show which draws on Birmingham’s collection of modern and contemporary art to explore how artists have used a wide range of styles and imagery to interpret complex human emotion and experiences. The display is centred around the sculpted polychrome group Man and His Sheep (1989) by the Brazilian-born artist Ana Maria Pacheco, which has not been on show for over five years. The striking installation consists of eight lifelike carved wooden figures arranged in a procession. Each imposing figure is carved from a single piece of limewood then painted and waxed to give a startling lifelike appearance, enhanced by their onyx eyes and acrylic teeth, which add a somewhat sinister expression. Pacheco’s oil painting In Illo Tempore I (1994) is also on display. The display also includes two Picasso etchings from the Vollard Suite. Winged Bull Watched by Four Children (1934) shows a monstrous mythological beast, whilst Portrait of Vollard (1937) uses lighter and darker shades to depict different characteristics of Ambroise Vollard, the art dealer who commissioned the Suite of prints. For conservation reasons neither of these works on paper are likely to be on display again soon. Other artists whose portraits are featured in the exhibition include a self-portrait by the Birmingham-born David Bomberg and Frank Auerbach’s etching of his friend the art historian Michael Podro. Click here for more information.
Obedience and Defiance focuses on political and feminist themes and includes previously unseen paintings and works on paper from the artist’s family and close friends, which reflect Rego’s perspective as a woman immersed in urgent social issues and current affairs. The selection of works focuses on the moral challenges to humanity, particularly in the face of violence, gender discrimination and political tyranny. There are paintings and etchings related to children sold into slavery in North Africa (1996–98), abortion (1998–2000) and female genital mutilation (from 2009). Many of the images begin with the artist’s Portuguese roots and childhood experiences or respond to current affairs. This will be the first ever exhibition in Britain to present the paintings Rego made in the 1960s during the regime of the dictator Salazar.
Curated by the former director of London’s Whitechapel Gallery, Catherine Lampert, and organised by MK Gallery (Milton Keynes), the exhibition includes over 80 works. A major new publication will accompany the exhibition with texts by curator Catherine Lampert and the American writer and novelist Kate Zambreno, published by ART/BOOKS. Touring to Edinburgh and Dublin, the exhibition will be the first ever retrospective of Rego’s work in Scotland and Ireland.
Click here for more information on the exhibition in its current location.
The visual arts in Spain have long been haunted by the spectres of six giants: El Greco, Ribera, Velázquez, Murillo, Goya and Picasso. Still today, these canonical figures tower over all others and continue to shape the story of Spanish art, which has been traditionally told in monographic form. Although the strength of the Spanish canon has informed different disciplines (literature, aesthetics, performing arts), given the recent ‘material turn’, the prosopographical dimension of the visual arts in Spain poses a disciplinary challenge. Similarly, following the ‘global turn’, the visual arts of Iberia pose a geographical challenge, intersecting with the Mediterranean, Arabic, Latin American, British and continental European worlds. The notions of ‘Spain’ and ‘Spanish art’, therefore, are necessarily nebulous and problematic, raising a host of questions: To what extent does Spanish art exist before the establishment of Spain as a nation state? To what extent is the art of the Habsburg and Bourbon empires a Spanish art outside Spain? What is the role of Spain in the wider canon of European art? Who has exploited the visual arts of the Hispanic world, geographically, politically and intellectually? These questions ultimately point to a tension between canons and repertoires; between centres and peripheries; and between consolidating the ‘core’ and expanding the ‘remit’ of the so-called Spanish school.
This conference will explode the disciplinary, material and geographical limits of Spanish art, inaugurating the Zurbarán Centre as a critical and innovative research institution for the study of Spanish and Latin American art in the twenty-first century. Papers will challenge the canonical construction of Spanish art, which can be traced back to writings from Palomino’s Lives of the Eminent Spanish Painters and Sculptors (1724) to Stirling Maxwell’s Annals of the Artists of Spain (1848), to more recent publications by scholars in the field. Papers will also probe the chronological, geographical and material boundaries of the ‘El Greco to Goya’ survey, interrogating the ways in which academics, curators, scholars and teachers narrate this material through various platforms, including publications, museum displays, exhibitions, lectures, gallery talks and academic courses. Speakers will address the various ‘terrains’ of Spanish art, from geographical constructions of Iberia as Europe’s frontier or edge, to exchange with all that lies beyond the Pillars of Hercules.
The Latin American and Caribbean Contemporary Art Web Archive is a collection developed by the Ivy Plus Libraries Confederation‘s Art & Architecture Librarians, and is an extension of an existing effort focused on collecting publications in all formats that document contemporary art and artists of Latin America and the Caribbean. The agreement defines contemporary art as it refers to ‘developments in the visual arts from 1975 to the present,’ with material sought ‘for the entire career of artists who have been active at any time since 1975.’
This archive aims to preserve for researchers the personal and official websites belonging to notable contemporary Latin American and Caribbean artists in order to assure the continuing availability of the important content they contain.
Click here to access and browse the collection on Archive-It here.
Corredor Suspendido I, 2006 925 x 795 cm Hierro dulce trenzado, cables de acero y sombra. Vista de instalación Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, 2013 Foto: Attilio Maranzano
A recipient of Spain’s National Visual Arts Award in 1999, Cristina Iglesias (San Sebastián, 1956) is an internationally renowned Spanish artist. This exhibition consists of a huge collection of pieces that will be on display on the second floor of the west wing of the Centro Botín. Well-known for her sculptural pieces with hanging pavilions, latticework, corridors and labyrinths, Iglesias combines industrial materials and natural elements to create unusual, experiential spaces.
Cristina Iglesias has developed a close relationship with the Fundación Botín and its recently opened arts centre in Santander. This relationship translated into a site-specific sculptural intervention at the Centro Botín and the Pereda Gardens, titled Desde lo subterráneo (From the Underground), which features four pools and a pond in stone, iron and water. Moreover, in September 2018, Iglesias led a Villa Iris Visual Arts Workshop, an annual project sponsored by the Botín Foundation since 1994. The latest grand exhibition by Cristina Iglesias in Spain was on at the Reina Sofía Museum and Arts Centre in 2013. Her upcoming exhibition at the Centro Botín will offer a great chance to enjoy both her older and more recent pieces.