Archive: façade art
Andy Warhol’s scandalous mural was destroyed within days

Andy Warhol’s scandalous mural was destroyed within days

Andy Warhol - Thirteen Most Wanted Men No. 11, John Joseph H., Jr., 1964, Photo Axel Schneider
Thirteen Most Wanted Men No. 11, John Joseph H., Jr., 1964
Photo: Axel Schneider

Pop provocateur Andy Warhol was never a stranger to controversy. In 1964, as part of a series of commissions for the New York State Pavilion, Warhol was commissioned to work on an installation that would be displayed on the face of the pavilion, which was to serve as one of the main venues of the fair.

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Jonas Wood’s still life painting covers facade of museum in LA

Jonas Wood’s still life painting covers facade of museum in LA

Jonas Wood - Still Life with Two Owls, 2016, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles 1
Jonas WoodStill Life with Two Owls, 2016, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles
Photo: Elon Schoenholz

The Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles may feel hidden because of its downtown location. For a long time since it was designed by Japanese architect Arata Isozaki, it has been associated with its less conspicuous qualities. Since L.A. painter Jonas Wood covered the museum building facade with a reproduction of his Still Life With Two Owls painting of 2014, the vinyl production has not only revitalized the downtown street but the museum’s interior as well.

There is no shortage of dazzling architecture in the modern era and for a museum to stay quiet in a vibrant city like Los Angeles feels odd. Thanks to Wood, the 500m2 facade has covered the museum’s exterior with a mural that depicts plants in a variety of decorated ceramic vessels. There is no doubt that the flowers and splash of color that has been used in the vinyl gives the temperature outside the museum a complete makeover.

The choice of color that Wood uses is peculiar to him as he has for a long time taken pride in creating brightly hued portraits and still life drawings with generous amounts of color combinations. This current project has taken him since 2014 and the final touches were being made in 2017. For an artist of his caliber to sit back and describe his work as exuberant, it is because he too believes in the effect it is going to create. This is the reaction Wood has as he sees the rendering team working to set the paint on the wall. There is no doubt that the colors will come to life just like the artist intended.

Such effort in lightening up an outdoor space is worth it even if the light only lasts a while. The decision to use vinyl is deliberate because not only does it adhere to the wall, but it keeps the facade intact. While Wood’s mural is currently vibrant, in time it will need to pave way for another artist to showcase their ideas. As the face of the museum takes a transformational curve, it will give art lovers new hope and desire to see what is on display.

As its run comes to a close, Wood’s vinyl mural will have to peel off the wall but its magnificence does not come down with it. In this technological era, his work will be immortalized on smartphones and social media pages.

Jonas Wood - Still Life with Two Owls, 2016, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles 2
Jonas WoodStill Life with Two Owls, 2016, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles
Photo: Elon Schoenholz

Jonas Wood - Still Life with Two Owls, 2016, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles 3
Jonas WoodStill Life with Two Owls, 2016, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles
Photo: Elon Schoenholz

Jonas Wood - Still Life with Two Owls, 2016, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles 4
Jonas WoodStill Life with Two Owls, 2016, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles
Photo: Elon Schoenholz

Jonas Wood - Still Life with Two Owls, 2016, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, Photo Christina House : For The Times 2
Jonas WoodStill Life with Two Owls, 2016, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles
Photo: Christina House / For The Times

Jonas Wood - Still Life with Two Owls, 2016, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles 5
Jonas WoodStill Life with Two Owls, 2016, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles
Photo: Christina House / For The Times

Jonas Wood - Still Life with Two Owls, 2016, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, Photo Christina House : For The Times 3
Jonas WoodStill Life with Two Owls, 2016, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles
Photo: Elon Schoenholz

Jonas Wood - Still Life with Two Owls, 2016, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, Photo Christina House : For The Times 1
Jonas WoodStill Life with Two Owls, 2016, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles
Photo: Christina House / For The Times


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Viewers mislead: These people are not famous – Braco Dimitrijevic

Viewers mislead: These people are not famous – Braco Dimitrijevic

Braco Dimitrijevic - Casual Passer-by I met at 11.09 AM, 1971
Braco DimitrijevićCasual Passer-by I met at 11.09 AM, 1971

Braco Dimitrijević’s Casual Passer-By series are a series of canvas based photographs created as from 1971. The works feature large-scale images of people that the artist met in the streets. Each of the pieces comes with the exact time and place where the artist met with the person. However, he did not always put the exact date. These images were then placed on some of the prominent positions on the facades of high traffic areas such as the museum, advertisement displays, or the underground train service.

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Jaume Plensa’s stunning larger-than-life sculptures

Jaume Plensa’s stunning larger-than-life sculptures

Jaume Plensa - Paula, 2013, Bronze, 179 x 63 x 63 cm, Toledo Museum of Art, 2016, Photo The Blade:Andy Morrison

Jaume Plensa
Jaume Plensa

Jaume Plensa is arguably one of the top sculptors today. He is largely known for creating huge-sized ethereal sculptures, and has also worked with different other types of contemporary art media, including from acoustic installations to video projections.

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Complete castle covered with photorealistic print

Complete castle covered with photorealistic print

Bettina Pousttchi - The City, 2014
Bettina Pousttchi – The City, 2014, photo installation, facade of Wolfsburg Castle, photo by Norbert Miguletz

Bettina Pousttchi is a German-Iranian artist, living and working in Berlin. She works equally in the field of media, photography, video and sculpture, often involving architecture in urban and historical contexts. Her exhibition at the Städtische Galerie Wolfsburg is a site-specific photo installation called “The City”: an artwork covering the façade of the city’s castle. This work is a reference to the history of the 20th century planned city Wolfsburg.

Working on architecture about architecture allows for an artistic practice between architecture, sculpture, and photography. It is a different way to materialize a photographic file and to bring back the digital to the physical world.

Castle of Wolfsburg
The northern wing of the castle before the renovation (photo by Städtische Galerie Wolfsburg)

Bettina Pousttchi - The City, 2014
Bettina Pousttchi – The City, 2014, photo installation, facade of Wolfsburg Castle, photo by Norbert Miguletz

Bettina Pousttchi - The City, 2014
Bettina Pousttchi – The City, 2014, photo installation, facade of Wolfsburg Castle, photo by Norbert Miguletz

Bettina Pousttchi - The City, 2014
Bettina Pousttchi – The City, 2014, photo installation, facade of Wolfsburg Castle, photo by Norbert Miguletz

Bettina Pousttchi - The City, 2014
Bettina Pousttchi – The City, 2014, photo installation, facade of Wolfsburg Castle, photo by Norbert Miguletz


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What is Ai Weiwei doing with 9000 children’s backpacks?

What is Ai Weiwei doing with 9000 children’s backpacks?

Ai Weiwei - Remembering, 2009
Ai WeiweiRemembering, 2009, 100x1000cm, Haus der Kunst, München (Germany)

Overview

Ai Weiwei is unmistakably one of the most influential and equally controversial Chinese artists in recent history. He became famous worldwide in 2009 thanks to his highly celebrated art project, Remembering, an art piece he created to honor over 80,000 Chinese, most of whom were school children who perished in the May 2008 Sichuan earthquake. It was so captivating and popular that it rubbed the Chinese ruling regime the wrong way, and Ai Weiwei’s career has never been the same.

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Thomas Struth’s jungle photos may make you feel helpless

Thomas Struth’s jungle photos may make you feel helpless

Thomas Struth - <em>Paradise 01 (Daintree, Australia)</em>, 1998
Thomas Struth – Paradise 01 (Daintree, Australia), 1998

About New Pictures From Paradise

Next to his well known Street and Museum Photographs, Thomas Struth has been taking pictures of forests in different parts of the world since 1998. By giving these images the title New Pictures from Paradise he has endowed them with a special meaning as pictures of nature before the Fall of Man. His attention focuses on wild nature, at the same time referencing and questioning representations of paradise throughout history and cultures.

Thomas Struth about these works in Artforum, May 2002: My approach to the jungle pictures might be said to be new, in that my initial impulses were pictorial and emotional, rather than theoretical. They are “unconscious places” and thus seem to follow my early city pictures. These images contain a wealth of delicately branched information, which makes it almost impossible, especially in large formats, to isolate single forms. One can spend a lot of time in front of these pictures and remain helpless in terms of knowing how to deal with them. There is no socio-cultural context to be read or discovered, unlike in the photographs of people in front of paintings in museums. Standing in front of the facade of the cathedral in Milan, one experiences oneself as a human being defined by specific social and historical conditions. The jungle pictures, on the other hand, emphasize the self. Because of their consistent “all over” nature, they could be understood as membranes for meditation. They present a kind of empty space: emptied to elicit a moment of stillness and internal dialogue. You have to be able to enjoy this silence in order to communicate with yourself—and eventually with others.

In most of these photographs, Struth doesn’t allow our gaze to penetrate the depth of the image. Trees, branches and leaves create a dense texture that prevents us from seeing the horizon and the depth of the landscapes, which can only be guessed. Without hierarchically structuring the picture, its entire surface is crisscrossed all over and covered by plant forms – reminiscent of the lines in paintings by Jackson Pollock and Brice Marden. Struth’s jungle pictures mark the beginning of a different approach to the way the surface of photographic images captures our gaze, sending it in different directions. Thanks to their richness of details, the images are presenting a kind of silence that can be listened to for a long time before one can get to know its rules. From the first documentary portraits of families to the cityscapes, to the museums, up to the harmonic chaos of the jungles, Thomas Struth’s photographic eye has traveled the world finding new ways of representing its complexity, trying to capture the presence of the unconscious in the visible.

About Thomas Struth

Thomas Struth is one of the leading artists in contemporary photography. Born in Geldern near Cologne in 1954, from 1973 to 1980 he studied at the Düsseldorf Academy as a student of Gerhard Richter and then Bernd Becher. By the end of the Seventies, he started to explore the possibilities of photography as psychological research. Since 1978 he takes pictures of urban landscapes, from 1980 he photographs museum visitors looking at paintings, thus exploring the different relationships between painting and photography, art and the viewer. Later he works on a broader range of subjects, working always in these groups.

Since his first museum exhibition at Kunsthalle Bern in 1987, his work has been shown extensively in museums throughout the world. In 2003 the Metropolitan in New York staged a large retrospective, and recently he had exhibitions at the Prado in Madrid in 2007 and at the Museum Madre in Naples in Spring 2008. His works are in the collections of MoMA and the Metropolitan Museum in New York, the Tate Gallery in London, the Museum of Modern Art in Tokyo and Kunsthaus Zurich among many others.

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