The girls name “Susie” served as a trademark for Ashley Bickerton’s work, he showed during the 1980s in New York until moving to Bali. His intriguing painterly and sculptural pieces derive from commodity aesthetics, marketing language and corporate culture. At the time they were shown in the context of the seminal group of artists – often referred to as “Neo-Geo” – consisting of Bickerton, Halley, Koons and Vaisman at Sonnabend gallery. Ashley Bickerton – Susie is the first monographic close reading of Bickerton’s influential early work. Contributions by Lauren O’Neill-Butler, Fredi Fischli, Abigail Solomon-Godeau, Bob Nickas, Niels Olsen, Thomas Lawson and John C. Welchmann offer a wide range of critical views on his practice. Published in the series STUDIOLO / Edition Patrick Frey.
Oceanomania investigates the evolution of our fascination with the sea, in time and space, design, literature and art, revealing how the uncanny and marvelous have inspired artistic research. Continuing his investigations as a naturalist, archaeologist and traveler, the American artist Mark Dion explored the collections of the Oceanographic Museum of Monaco to create a monumental curiosity cabinet and dived into the collections of the Nouveau Musée National de Monaco (NMNM) to present a major intervention at Villa Paloma, one of the NMNM’s exhibition spaces. The accompanying publication, Oceanomania: Souvenirs of Mysterious Seas published by MACK and NMNM combines installation images from the exhibition, original artist imagery and essays from various writers exploring the different facets of the exploration of the seas and the challenges in exhibiting a marine world above sea level. Two significant and contrasting recent maritime events form the conceptual framework of Dion’s project. These are the recently completed Census of Marine Life (2010) and the Deepwater Horizon oilrig explosion. The first brought together 2,700 scientists from 80 nations over a 10-year period to assess and explain the diversity, distribution and abundance of life in the oceans. The second, the Deepwater Horizon oilrig explosion led to 4.9 million barrels of crude oil being spilled into the seas of the Gulf of Mexico, producing an 80 square mile kill zone and causing extensive damage to marine life. Its consequences are expected to be felt for decades to come. Dion’s work examines our perception of the oceans and engages our sense of wonder at its diversity and our melancholy at its depletion. The project brings together works by 20 visual artists and 13 writers who show different aspects relating to our understanding of the sea and the ocean. They focus on the ocean not only as a site for exploration and discovery but also as a site where there is often unregulated and invisible human labor and exchange and where the marvelous aquatic life and mineral resources are often neglectfully exploited. The exhibition and catalogue includes the monumental series Twenty Thousand Leagues under the Sea by Bernard Buffet (1928-1999) and works by Matthew Barney, Ashley Bickerton, David Brooks, Michel Camia, David Casini, Peter Coffin, Katharina Fritsch, Klara Hobza, Isola and Norzi, Pam Longobardi, Jean Painlevé, James Prosek, Man Ray, Alexis Rockman, Allan Sekula, Xaviera Simmons, Laurent Tixador and Abraham Poincheval and Rosemarie Trockel.
In an age of ‘ethnic cleansing’ and forced migration, of contested borders and nations in turmoil, how have issues of place and identity, and of belonging and exclusion, been represented in visual culture? In Terra Infirma, Irit Rogoff examines geography’s truth claims and signifying practices, arguing that geography is a language in crisis, unable to represent the immense changes that have taken place in a post-colonial, post-communist, post-migratory world. She uses the work of international contemporary artists to explore how art in the twentieth century has confronted and challenged issues of identity and belonging.
Rogoff’s dazzling and richly-illustrated study takes in painting, installation art, film and video by a wide range of artists including Charlotte Salomon, Ana Mendieta, Joshua Neustein, Yehoshua Glotman, Mona Hatoum, Hans Haacke, Ashley Bickerton, Alfredo Jaar and Guillermo Gomez-Pena. Structuring her argument through themes of luggage, mapping, borders and bodies, Rogoff explores how artists have confronted twentieth century phenomena such as the horror of the Holocaust, the experience of diaspora at New York’s Ellis Island, and, in the present day, disputed and fraught boundaries in the Middle East, the two Germanies, the Balkan states and the US-Mexican border.
With contributions by Sabeth Buchmann, Mercedes Bunz, Diedrich Diederichsen, Kodwo Eshun, Anselm Franke, Erich Hörl, Norman M. Klein, Maurizio Lazzarato, Flora Lysen, Eva Meyer, John Palmesino, Laurence Rickels, Bernd M. Scherer, Fred Turner In the year 1966, a young man named Stewart Brand handed out buttons in San Francisco reading: “Why haven’t we seen a photograph of the whole Earth yet?” Two years later, the NASA photograph of the “blue planet” appeared on the cover of the Whole Earth Catalog. In creating the catalogue, frequently described as the analogue forerunner of Google, Brand had founded one of the most influential publications of recent decades. It mediated between cyberneticists and hippies, nature romantics and technology geeks, psychedelia and computer culture, and thus triggered defining impulses for the environmentalist movement and the rise of the digital network culture. The photo of the blue planet developed a sphere of influence like almost no other image: it stands not only for ecological awareness and crisis but also for a new sense of unity and globalization. The universal picture of “One Earth” hence anticipated an image of the end of the Cold War, whose expansion into space it accompanied, and overwrote or neutralized political lines of conflict by transferring classical politics and criticism of it to other categories, such as cybernetic management or ecology. The exhibition “The Whole Earth” is an essay composed of cultural-historical materials and artistic positions that critically address the rise of the image of “One Earth” and the ecological paradigm associated with it. The accompanying publication includes image-rich visual essays that explore key themes: “Universalism,” “Whole Systems,” “Boundless Interior,” and “Apocalypse, Babylon, Simulation,” among others. These are surrounded by critical essays that shed light onto 1960s California and the networked culture that emerged from it. Artists: Nabil Ahmed, Ant Farm, Eleanor Antin, Martin Beck, Jordan Belson, Ashley Bickerton, Dara Birnbaum, Erik Bulatov, Angela Bulloch, Bruce Conner, Öyvind Fahlström, Robert Frank, Jack Goldstein, Nancy Holt and Robert Smithson, Lawrence Jordan, Silvia Kolbowski, Philipp Lachenmann, David Lamelas, Sharon Lockhart, Piero Manzoni, Raymond Pettibon, Adrian Piper, Robert Rauschenberg, Ira Schneider, Richard Serra, Alex Slade, Jack Smith, Josef Strau, The Center for Land Use Interpretation, The Otolith Group, Suzanne Treister, Andy Warhol, Bruce Yonemoto, et al.
Greek collector Dakis Joannou is one of the preeminent collectors of contemporary art in the world, with a collection that stands as a virtual who’s who of artists from the 1980s through today. 85 of those artists are represented in Monument to Now–the most utterly relevant to today, of course. Leading curators from New York, Milan and Paris have contributed essays and selected the included artists. Designed by acclaimed graphic artist Stefan Sagmeister, the hardcover edition features a three-dimensional monument affixed to the front cover; the paperback retains some trace of the monument, perhaps a footprint of the monument on the front cover, a pop-up monument inside, or some other invention. The follow-up to Everything That’s Interesting Is New, an earlier book on the Joannou collection, Monument to Now strictly includes work dating from 1985 and later, with a focus on the artists who are most relevant now. Among many new acquisitions featured are works by Vanessa Beecroft, Maurizio Cattelan, Gregory Crewdson, Anna Gaskell, Mariko Mori, Chris Ofili, Tom Sachs, Fred Tomaselli and Kara Walker. Other included artists are Janine Antoni, Matthew Barney, Ashley Bickerton, Rineke Dijkstra, Olafur Eliasson, Robert Gober, Andreas Gursky, Peter Halley, Mike Kelley, Toba Khedoori, Jeff Koons, Paul McCarthy, Takashi Murakami, Shirin Neshat, Tim Noble & Sue Webster, Cady Noland, Gabriel Orozco, Charles Ray, Cindy Sherman, Kiki Smith, Wolfgang Tillmans, Gillian Wearing, Christopher Wool and Chen Zhen.
a+mbookstore is a publishing house and a bookstore specializing in visual contemporary arts, founded in 1993 in Milan.
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