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Posts By katie mccallum

Artwork installation

Strange worlds collide in Matrix: Mathematics_Heart of Gold and the Abyss

[Our U.K. correspondent, Katie, takes a trip to Seoul and reviews a show combining calculation and contemporary art. -- the artblog editors] To most people, mathematics is something of an unknown world. At worst, it can be intimidating; at best, filled with secrets that can’t be accessed without a significant amount of education. Conceived as a look at the artist’s take on mathematics, Matrix: Mathematics_Heart of Gold and the Abyss at Seoul’s National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art was timed to coincide with the International Congress of Mathematicians, taking place in the same city. The “Heart of Gold,” explains ... More » »

The Treachery of Sanctuary, Chris Milk.

Shaping the Digital Revolution at the Barbican, London

[Our London correspondent, Katie, takes us through a group exhibition focusing on the progression of digital art since its inception; she also offers thoughts about where the medium will take us next. - the artblog editors] Any exciting new trend or tendency in the art world will find itself, sooner or later, the subject of a large, high-profile show hoping to act as the herald for the next big thing. Such shows often become the focal point around which lively debates and controversies play themselves out. The Digital Revolution show at the Barbican Centre, London, is just such an exhibition. ... More » »

Giulio Paolini ESSERE O NO ESSERE Macro - Roma a cura di Bartolo

Slipping out of the picture –- Giulio Paolini’s To Be Or Not To Be at the Whitechapel Gallery, London

[Katie delves into the magic and mathematical inspiration behind Giulio Paolini's work, which tackles the role of the viewer, tongue firmly in cheek. -- the artblog editors] Giulio Paolini’s retrospective show at the Whitechapel Gallery reads like a playful pursuit in a hall of mirrors; the viewer may hunt the artist all they like, but all they will find is their own gaze, reflected and deflected through a teasingly self-referential maze. Paolini’s work is a witty exploration of the encounter between the work and the viewer, his own role constantly questioned, upturned and visibly sliced out of the picture. Capturing ... More » »

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University of Brighton Graduate Show 2014

[Our UK correspondent, Katie, reflects on the plight of the graduating art student; she discusses how these challenges are reflected in a show of matriculating students' work. -- the artblog editors] An institution like a university provides its students access to an extraordinary range of contacts, information, resources, and tools. One difficulty is that the culture residing within its walls can also tend to reinforce a belief that such structures are essential to facilitate, showcase, and validate cultural production. The yearly Graduate Show at the University of Brighton sees a crop of students just about to step outside of this ... More » »

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Makers – Collaboration in the age of new technology

[Katie reports from the UK, where she gets a taste of the "maker movement" encouraging everyone to take a hands-on interest in the creation of products and technologies. -- the artblog editors] Today’s world seems to be filled with brand-new technologies, invented and reinvented at lightning speeds by the youngest of experts. The maker movement can be broadly defined as a group taking a DIY approach to these new technologies, prioritising the asking of questions and free experimentation in a culture of very hands-on creation. Collaborative workshops known as “hackspaces” are popping up all over, filled with making equipment and ... More » »

© Oliver Goodrich

Dead space in a crowded city — Turning London’s empty warehouses into creative communities

[Katie takes an in-depth look at how rising housing costs are pushing some London artists to get creative, and live communally. -- the artblog editors] London is an expensive city. Reports abound of broom-closets with toilets next to the bed going for exorbitant rates of rent, in a city plagued by homelessness and poverty. It is also home to a vibrant arts scene, with four major universities churning out batches of exciting young artists with wild ideas and a lot more drive than money. The rise of a new community center It’s no surprise, then, to find a thriving scene ... More » »

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United in light — Darren Almond’s To Leave a Light Impression and Dale Chihuly’s Beyond the Object in London

[Katie explores two London shows that treat light in very different ways, from moonlit nature photographs to abstract, colorful glass sculptures -- the artblog editors] Light does much to connect us with the world. Its ricocheting rays tell volumes about what’s around us, from the expression on the face of a friend to the condition of a distant star. It’s little wonder, then, that light is an object of fascination and exploration for artists, who play with perceptions that most of us take for granted. Darren Almond‘s long-exposure moonlight photos, now showing at White Cube, play explicitly with the idea ... More » »

Kara Walker, Auntie Walker’s Wall Sampler for Civilians (detail), 2013. Courtesy of Sikkema Jenkins & Co., New York © Kara Walker.

Fighting dirty — Kara Walker’s first UK show and upcoming curatorial project

[Katie reviews a controversial show at London's Camden Arts Centre by American artist Kara Walker, and discusses whether the artist is reinforcing or battling racist stereotypes. -- the artblog editors] As I enter, there it is spelled out in bold lettering on the glass doors: “We at Camden Arts Centre are Exceedingly Proud to Present an Exhibition of Capable Artworks by the Notable Hand of the Celebrated American, Kara Elizabeth Walker, Negress.” Even reading this title to Kara Walker’s first major solo UK show is itself somewhat discomfiting; its phrasing carries airs of times past, of printed playbills, hyperbolic flatteries, ... More » »

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Cracks in the boundary walls – Keith Harrison and Napalm Death

(Katie chronicles a participatory combination music/art show with an unexpected yet satisfying end — the artblog editors) It was a peculiar crowd that piled on to the two-carriage train to Bexhill on Friday 29th November, a sea of beer-swigging beards mixed with gallery types making their excited way to this sleepy seaside town. The occasion was a combination no less eclectic: a collaboration between the Victoria & Albert Museum’s former resident ceramicist Keith Harrison and the infamous grindcore band (**see note below) Napalm Death, who share both roots in Birmingham and a notorious appetite for destruction. On top of the ... More » »