Archives for category: Exhibitions

COVER’s readers are invited to the opening tomorrow of Take Off Your Shoes and Open Your Eyes – a collaboration between Alberto Levi Gallery and Idarica Gazzoni (see COVER magazine Summer 2012). Contemporary carpets from Alberto Levi will be displayed in fantasy room settings enhanced by selections from Gazzoni’s Arjumand textile collections. (cont)

Idarica invite

Each designer is inspired by similar source material. Overdyed recycled silk sari hand knotted rugs from the Aquasilk Collection sit alongside Gazzoni’s new collections including the Deco collection based on ivory and black patterns from Japan as well as the geometric abstractions of Emile-Jacques Ruhlmann.

There are two sites to visit, each a short walk from the other. Alberto Levi Gallery at Via San Maurilio 24 and Spazio Arjumand at Via Santa Marta 11, a marvelous Renaissance courtyard. The opening is tomorrow 10.00 to 2000 hours and the exhibition continues until 15th April (1000-1900 hours). To attend tomorrow contact Carola Galliani. carola AT albertolevi DOT com.

Forza Tappeti: the Rug Revolution, La Pelota, Via Palermo, 10, Milan, Italy. La Pelota is the venue for designjunction’s curated exhibition and Forza Tappeti is located at the entrance. Please visit and say hello!

pelota

Let’s go! Andiamo! Don’t miss COVER magazine’s Forza Tappeti: the Rug Revolution exhibition at the entrance to designjunction’s EDIT at La Pelota during the Salone Internazionale del Mobile di Milano. A selection of the designers featured in Forza Tappeti include Christopher Farr and CC-Tapis plus:

Shimmering Spring by Zollanvari

Shimmering Spring by Zollanvari

Tissage

Grace by Tissage

Alasht

Alasht by Edelgrund

Fish Scales by Deirdre Dyson

Fish Scales by Deirdre Dyson

The conceptual underpinnings of Outsider Art are problematic. Who’s “in” and who’s “out” is just one of the questions no one has adequately defined. Your scribe is puzzling this conunudrum for multiple publications, so will say no more for now other that to present textile works from Wellcome Trust’s Souzou: Outsider Art from Japan on until 30 June 2013. More than 300 works in various media create a compelling object-led exhibition. DJ

Yumiko Kawai, Circles, 2009, wool, acrylic yarns, cotton Social Welfare Corporation Yamanami Atelier

Yumiko Kawai, Circles, 2009, wool, acrylic yarns, cotton. Social Welfare Corporation Yamanami Atelier

Yumiko Kawai, Circles, 2009, wool, acrylic yarns, cotton. Social Welfare Corporation Yamanami Atelier

Yumiko Kawai, Circles, 2009, wool, acrylic yarns, cotton. Social Welfare Corporation Yamanami Atelier

Norie Shukumatani Hyogo, Embroidered Strawberry, 2011, Embroidery thread, felt and cotton

Norie Shukumatani, Embroidered Strawberry, 2011, embroidery thread, felt and cotton

Takashira Shimada, (left) Fried Chicken Pyjamas, 2002, oil-based marker, acrylic paint, pyjamas. (Right) Salmon Roe Pyjamas, 2004, thread, oil based marker, acrylic paint, pyjamas

Takashira Shimada, (left) Fried Chicken Pyjamas, 2002, oil-based marker, acrylic paint, pyjamas. (Right) Salmon Roe Pyjamas, 2004, thread, oil based marker, acrylic paint, pyjamas

Satoshi Morita, Untitled, 2010-11, wool, acrylic & cotton yarns, cotton, ribbon. Social Welfare Corporation, Yamanami Atelier

Satoshi Morita, Untitled, 2010-11, wool, acrylic & cotton yarns, cotton, ribbon. Social Welfare Corporation, Yamanami Atelier

Satoshi Morita, Untitled, undated, wool, acrylic, cotton yarns, cotton. Social Welfare Corporation, Yamanami Atelier

Satoshi Morita, Untitled, undated, wool, acrylic, cotton yarns, cotton. Social Welfare Corporation, Yamanami Atelier

Just weeks to wait until the Salone Internazionale del Mobile welcomes the world to the annual design exposition. Spread across the city but centred in the Brera district, one of the focal points is La Pelota where the UK’s designjunction will present EDIT.

Rather like the anticipation created by a nested set of Russian Matryoshka dolls where the urge is to power through the nest to find the innermost gem, visitors will want to ensure they discover COVER magazine’s Forza Tapetti: The Rug Revolution pavilion. Strategically located in the forecourt of La Pelota, Forza Tapetti is a must-see curated exhibition of the best in contemporary carpets. Here’s a sneak peak at the carpets that will be displayed in our Michael Sodeau-designed pavilion. DJ

Forza Tapetti Rug Revolution pavilion, EDIT, La Pelota, Milan Design Week 2013

Forza Tapetti Rug Revolution pavilion, EDIT, La Pelota, Milan Design Week 2013

Woven in linen and cotton Red Meander was designed by Anni Albers, famed alumnus of the Bauhaus in Germany and founding faculty member at the legendary Black Mountain College in North Carolina. It was she who can be credited with developing and disseminating a revolution in 20th century contemporary textile design and production. But is Meander truly a meander or is it more mythical maze? (Cont)

Christopher Farr Rugs, Red Meander by Anni Albers. Weave raised Aubusson, handspun wool.

Christopher Farr, Red Meander by Anni Albers. Weave raised Aubusson, handspun wool.

The word meander calls to mind a loose, loopy gambol not a rectilinear purposeful path. Albers’ pattern recalls labyrinth floors like St Quentin, Chartres Cathedral or the infamous labyrinthos of Greek mythology.

Daedelus designed the labyrinth to cage King Minos’ stealth weapon – the “man-bull” Minotaur. At war with mainland Athens, the island King prevailed and demanded “tributes” of Athenian youth every nine years to feed the Minotaur. Enough was enough. Athens sent Theseus to Crete. He got lucky. It was un coup de foudre when the King’s daughter saw him. Betraying dad, she gave Theseus the secret directions to the heart of the labyrinth. “Forwards, down and never left or right”, and she gave him a ball of yarn to unroll as back-up “map”. Theseus killed the man-bull. Fair fight? No. Theseus had a sword. Poor Minotaur. Trapped his whole life in a maze, no friends, and infrequent feedings. Cruel. (Cont)

ancient graffiti

Pompeii labyrinth graffito 79 AD

Whatever Albers’ influence for Meander, it seems she may have inspired Keith Haring, or is it only your scribe who sees similarities between Meander and Haring’s hip hop graffiti?

Original Anni Albers rugs and textiles are found in private collections, museums and The Josef and Anni Albers Foundation. Several exemplary contemporary dealers are authorised by the Foundation to sell renditions of Meander. Alan Cristea Gallery sells screenprints, and Christopher Farr sells the rug. Find Farr in London or better still, stop by COVER’s Forza Tappeti: The Rug Revolution exhibition at Edit during Milan Design Week next month to see Meander and more. DJ

Yesterday’s highway led to the press preview for the V&A exhibition Treasures of the Royal Courts: Tudors, Stuarts and the Russian Tsars, but hours later the byway landed your scribe in Goa. Googling for information on English traders, your scribe chanced across a print from Jan Huygen van Linschoten’s Itinerario (1596) detailing his stay (1583-1588) in the Portuguese colony of Goa on the Indian subcontinent. The print is full of action, but it’s the row of houses in the background that holds a nugget of information for textile buffs and fans of line drying.

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Itinerario, Jan Huygen van Linschoten. John Carter Brown Library, Brown University

The upper windows of each house have what appear to be shallow balconies. But are they balconies or rather clever drying racks? Rugs or textiles hang from the floors of three balconies at the left of the print (click to enlarge images). The image suggests that rather than solid slabs, the floors were an open series of horizontal poles creating the architectural version of modern airing/drying racks. A rather elegant and tidy solution to the pell-mell of clotheslines. DJ (see addendum below)

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(Detail) Itinerario, Jan Huygen van Linschoten. John Carter Brown Library, Brown University

ADDENDUM

Your scribe welcomes input and a devoted reader (*mum*) offers her view on the laundry rack theory. She suggests

“if these were primarily laundry drying racks then I would expect to see articles of clothing such as we saw in Spain on clotheslines strung between buildings. But no. What I see in Goa are bed quilts put out for airing in the manner of the Japanese, which custom is adhered to even today in Japan, I believe.”

Your scribe agrees. Goa residents – especially those facing a major public square – would not hang wet clothing at the front of the property for aesthetic, propriety, and practical (dripping water) reasons. So yes, learned mum is correct. These are airing racks for decorative bedding or rugs but not laundry racks. DJ

Over the river, and through the woods, but your scribe isn’t going to grandma’s house. A visit to the British Museum’s African Textiles Today requires perseverance to cross multiple galleries, wend through crowds, until Gallery 90 is reached by fleet feet up four flights. Don’t be flummoxed by In Search of Classical Greece, cross through this exhibition to discover the African textiles exhibition tucked at the back. It’s not big, but it’s bold, bright and informative. And for your scribe it posed a question. Was Roy Lichtenstein influenced by African design?

Samakaka printed cotton, Angola, early 21st century

Samakaka printed cotton, Angola, early 21st century, photograph courtesy of and copyright The Trustees of the British Museum

Concurrent with the British Museum’s African Textiles exhibition is Tate Modern’s blockbuster Lichtenstein exhibition. Pop art’s pow hit the public in 1962. Lichtenstein, Warhol, Wesselmann, Indiana and Rosenquist all had one-man shows. Lichtenstein famously used newspaper comic strips as his compositional and narrative framework although he was also influenced to a lesser degree by other media.

African textiles & Roy Lichtenstein

Comparison of modern African textiles with Roy Lichtenstein’s pop art oeuvre

Have critics considered whether Lichtenstein, like Picasso et al, was influenced by Africa, particularly African textiles? The term “radical chic” arrived in 1970 when Tom Wolfe used it in his New York magazine feature Radical Chic: That Party at Lenny’s to describe the interaction of above Houston Street denizens like conductor Leonard Bernstein with those who lived below Houston (Greenwich Village etc). Did Lichtenstein similarly seek inspiration or kudos from African motifs as secondary supplement to his adaptations of American mass media? Whether yes or no, the compilation image above shows the visual relationship between the two. Your scribe suggests readers cross the Thames both ways to see Lichtenstein on the south bank and African art on the north, and judge for yourselves. DJ

Go on. Lean deep into the hairpin curve. Forza Tappeti Rug Revolution 2013 at the Salone Internazionale Del Mobile, Milan will be an exhilarating ride. Celebrating its second successive year at the Salone, Forza Tappeti is a COVER magazine exhibition presenting the best in contemporary hand made design carpets. COVER are delighted to present Forza Tappeti as part of designjunction’s Edit exhibition.

COVER magazine's Forza Tappeti Rug Revolution 2013. Background image is Esquire Evolution rug by Top Floor.

Get ready to ride! COVER magazine’s Forza Tappeti Rug Revolution 2013. Background image is Esquire Evolution rug by Esti Barnes for Top Floor.

The venue is La Pelota, on the via Palermo in Milan’s famous Brera-Garibaldi artist quarteriere, aka the Brera Design District. Before the massive venue was renovated and transformed to host events, La Pelota was the place to watch the riotous and rapid game of pelota. Promoted in North America (and elsewhere) as Jai alai, the small rubber game ball can reach speeds of 300 km per hour. Expect Forza Tappeti to deliver similar speed, expertise, exhilaration, players, audience and more.

Edit’s dates are 9-14 April 2013, and includes highlights from designjunction’s September 2012 London Design Week show. And now for the first time it will also include Forza Tappeti. Just two months to go. Get ready to ride. DJ

The portmanteau word “carpetalogue” is the delightful moniker created to describe the ‘pages’ – i.e. carpets – in the current exhibition at Gallery Libby Sellers, London. Celebrating art and design studio M/M (Paris), the singular exhibition title is interpreted by your scribe as a witty contemporary update of the traditional festschrift – a volume of essays by different writers celebrating a remarkable individual. Instead M/M (Paris) – with a little help from their friends – celebrate themselves. And rightly so. Carpetalogue recognises M/M Paris’ twentieth anniversary and publication of the studio’s monograph.

Fumetsu rug M/M Paris. Photograph by Gideon Hart. Copyright the artists and photographer. Image courtesy of Gallery Libby Sellers.

Fumetsu rug M/M Paris. Photograph by Gideon Hart. Copyright the artists and photographer. Image courtesy of Gallery Libby Sellers.

The designs of the four hand knotted wool rugs (limited edition of twelve each) are drawn from the visual lexicon of M/M Paris, and made in Varanasi, India under the design direction of Gallery Libby Sellers and Abhishek Poddar, whose art/design credentials include carpet projects with Takashi Murakami and Julian Opie.

Sirene rug M/M Paris. Photograph by Gideon Hart. Copyright the artists and photographer. Image courtesy of Gallery Libby Sellers.

Michaël Amzalag and Mathias Augustyniak established M/M (Paris) as a graphic design studio in 1992. Their “free forms” graphic style is noteworthy on many levels, not least because the duo have elevated the furiously fast and dense ink doodles (e.g. Sirene above) familiar perhaps to many COVER readers from their own school notebooks, to the realm of fine art and design. Rather than a pejorative critique, this observation is a commendation to M/M Paris for pushing into the mainstream an art form practiced even before medieval secular illuminators inserted often quite naughty “doodles” in the marginalia or inside back covers of folios they were tasked to hand-illuminate.

Notebook page, M/M Paris. Photograph by Gideon Hart. Copyright the artists and photographer. Image courtesy of Gallery Libby Sellers.

Exhibition installation photograph copyright Ed Reeve. Photograph courtesy Gallery Libby Sellers.

Fitzrovia is London’s new gallery quarter, and on the last Thursday of each month the galleries host a late night. Gallery Libby Sellers is part of these festivities, and not only can COVER readers enjoy the Carpetalogue exhibition until 9 p.m., they can benefit from Libby Sellers’ “penchant for second hand books”, as the gallerist is creating a one night only pop up shop to sell some of her design book collection. Sharp elbows at the ready, your scribe will be there at the bell to dive into Sellers’ exhibition and book cornucopia. DJ