mon 22/07/2024

Visual Arts Features

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?

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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.

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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!

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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?!

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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.

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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.

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New Year Brantub - Free Tickets Competition

theartsdesk

Competition alert! Start 2012 with a surprise arts trip. On theartsdesk we love crossing the borders - "Surprise me," was the edict of the great impresario of theatre, music, art and dance, Serge Diaghilev, and it's one we hold to here, because we believe in the pleasure of surprises. So please enter our competition, and a pair of tickets to one of the splendid events listed below could be coming your way, but you will take pot luck with which one you win, and who knows?

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