tue 20/08/2019

Visual Arts Features

theartsdesk in Liverpool: The Sea Odyssey

Glyn Môn Hughes

There is something surreal about emerging from an underground station in Liverpool and being confronted by an enormous giant lumbering its way up the street. Even coming up the escalator it is possible to hear the band accompanying this gigantic being merging with the roar of delight from the crowd. And crowds there have been. Over the three days of the Sea Odyssey it is estimated that 600,000 people have seen the latest street theatre creation from Nantes-based Royal De Luxe.

Read more...

Damien Hirst: Genius or Con Artist?

Sarah Kent

As Damien Hirst’s Tate retrospective looms large on the horizon, the million-dollar question is whether the work has withstood the test of time. Will exciting and provocative sculptures like the pickled shark, which became an icon of Brit Art the minute it swam into view at the Saatchi Gallery in 1992, still send shivers down the spine, or has it become too familiar to arouse anything more than a yawn of recognition?

Read more...

theartsdesk in New York: Battling for the Heart of Ground Zero

Markie Robson-Scott

Ever since we moved into an apartment building round the corner from Ground Zero a couple of years ago, I’ve been keeping an eye on One World Trade Center, formerly known as the Freedom Tower, soon to be America’s tallest building. Now it’s reached 92 of its eventual 105 floors at the rate of one floor a week, its octagonal steel panels covered in blast-resistant glass soaring skywards, and Condé Nast and J Crew have signed up as some of its future occupants.

Read more...

theASHtray: Homeland, Kings of Leon, and we need to talk about Aïda

ASH Smyth

So Homeland is here, and mid-ranking-CIA-operative Claire Danes is chasing Marine-Sergeant-and-possible-al-Qaeda-double-agent Damian Lewis all over the shop (but really only in their heads, so far), and neither of them is getting anywhere fast, so Claire goes home for a kip and sticks on some relaxing music, and would you Adam ‘n’ Eve it? – another bloody jazz nerd!

Read more...

theASHtray: Whitney, bin men, and the NPG's 'incautious' acquisitions

ASH Smyth

Right, out with it: who else had their Valentine’s dinner-out ruined by 36 consecutive requests for Whitney Houston? Not even the entire back-catalogue, either: just “(And I-ee-I-ee-) I…”, over and over.

Read more...

theartsdesk in Papa Westray: Art at the End of the World

Amy Liptrot

In the same way that some chase the thrills of extreme sport, extreme art fans can now take the challenge of visiting this small art festival, which is uncompromising in terms of location, climate and content. Orkney as a whole has natural beauty, a rich history and a thriving cultural life, with a disproportionate number of artists compared to the size of the population.

Read more...

The Excruciating Power of the Parental Legacy: My First Foray Into Curating

Mark Hudson

Remember when you were out playing football with your mates, and your dad pulled up beside the pitch in a slightly too flashy car and told you it was time for tea or – even worse – tried to join in the game – and how you died inside. Actually, I don’t remember this Nick Hornbyesque scenario, having spent most of my childhood avoiding playing football, but I certainly recognise the sentiment.

Read more...

theASHtray: Beyoncé, 'Bond', and Eddie Redmayne's lips

ASH Smyth

So, Birdsong is over, and for all the arts-crit ink spilled upon it I am still none the wiser vis-à-vis my three main points of concern. First: it is a truth universally acknowledged (I asked around) that the most memorable episode in the Faulks novel was the one about the blowjob. This scene was not so much absent from the TV version as, er... cunningly re-gendered. Why?!

Read more...

theartsdesk Debate: But What Does It Mean? + Can Art Still Shock?

theartsdesk

The latest in the live events staged by theartsdesk aims to shed light on controversies and myths about the value and purpose of contemporary visual art. Taking place at the heart of the London Art Fair, where more than 100 galleries will present work this week, this double debate, chaired by our visual arts critic Fisun Güner, is the place to come and ask the tough questions about the relationship between artist and viewer.

Read more...

The Underbelly Project: Paris

Jasper Rees

Witnesses will have been puzzled. In a southern suburb of Paris, a group of maybe 16 figures trudge with purpose along the pavement at the witching hour of half past four in the morning. Some are carrying rucksacks. We are mostly male. Mostly tattooed. We loiter, attempting anonymity.

Read more...

Pages

Subscribe to theartsdesk.com

Thank you for continuing to read our work on theartsdesk.com. For unlimited access to every article in its entirety, including our archive of more than 10,000 pieces, we're asking for £3.95 per month or £30 per year. We feel it's a very good deal, and hope you do too.

To take an annual subscription now simply click here.

And if you're looking for that extra gift for a friend or family member, why not treat them to a theartsdesk.com gift subscription?

latest in today

Train Your Baby Like A Dog, Channel 4 review - an animal beh...

Animal behaviourist Jo-Rosie Haffenden, who lives in Spain, has some very good dogs (and a charming toddler, who knows how to sit). Can she...

Prom 43: Haefliger, BBCSO & Chorus, Oramo review – the f...

Time was, not long ago, when the very word “premiere” was enough to ensure a sizeable smattering of red plush holes in the Royal Albert Hall...

The Day Mountbatten Died, BBC Two review - the IRA's au...

It was a lovely summer’s day in southern England, much as it was in County Sligo. I was with my parents, driving to visit a very elderly relative...

Making new waves: Royce Vavrek on forging a libretto from La...

It was during the 1997 Golden Globe Awards telecast that I first caught a glimpse of the...

DVD/Blu-ray: The Chant of Jimmie Blacksmith

Fred Schepisi’s The Chant of Jimmie Blacksmith (1978) was the...

Prom 41: Ghindin, LPO, Jurowski review - perfect sound in a...

It was a Disney theme-park of Russian music, and in an entirely good way: none of the usual rides, but plenty of heroes and villains, sad spirits...

Edinburgh International Festival 2019: MacMillan birthday co...

To celebrate the 60th birthday of Sir James MacMillan, the...

CD: New Model Army - From Here

Justin Sullivan, the last remaining original member of Bradford post-...

Niall Griffiths: Broken Ghost review - Welsh visions of hope...

The trend-hopping taste-makers who run British literary publishing have lately decided that “working-class” writing merits a small dole of their...

Edinburgh International Festival 2019: Eugene Onegin, Komisc...

Returning to Edinburgh International Festival, Berlin's Komische Oper brought Barrie Kosky’s sumptuous production of Eugene Onegin to the...