Around the galleries
During the Olympic Games London plays host to an array of tempting exhibitions, including a welcome show of late works by Henry Moore. On the French Riviera, Monaco sees the return of Point Art Monaco.
Monique Kent, Friday, 1st June 2012
With the Olympic Games and the London 2012 Festival, the capital is going to be busy this summer, so it’s no surprise that galleries across the city are staging an array of tempting shows.
The Gagosian Gallery (6–24 Britannia Street; +44 (0)20 7841 9960) hosts an exhibition of large scale sculptures by Henry Moore, some of which are presented indoors for the first time. ‘Henry Moore: Large Late Forms’ brings together works such as Three Piece Sculpture: Vertebrae (1968) and Large Spindle Piece (1974) until 18 August (discussed on pp. 42–47 by Richard Calvocoressi, director of the Henry Moore Foundation, which has collaborated with Gagosian to create this show).Fitzrovia sees the opening of The Piper Gallery, a new space devoted exclusively to the work of contemporary artists whose careers have spanned 40 years or more. Opening at 18 Newman Street (+44 (0) 7415 123 000) on 29 June, its inaugural exhibition is entitled ‘Then and Now’, and examines the interplay between past and present. On display are early works by Edward Allington (b. 1951)and Vaughan Grylls (b. 1943), alongside new pieces created by the British artists especially for this show (until 11 August).
In Mayfair, Browse & Darby (19 Cork Street; +44 (0)20 7734 7984) stages the 36th edition of its annual summer show (until 25 July). ‘British & French’ brings together a selection of paintings, drawings, prints and sculptures from the gallery’s holdings, by major artists such as Degas, Sickert, Boudin and Augustus John. Among the works on display is Christopher Wood’s Still life on a Table (1925; Fig. 1), whose ‘naive’ style with its flattened and simplified forms was influenced by the work of Alfred Wallis.
From early 20th-century French and British art to a revival of the 1960s avant-garde, Luxembourg & Dayan (2 Savile Row; +44 (0)20 7734 1266) presents ‘Nouveau Réalisme’. Featuring Arman, Yves Klein and Martial Raysse, the exhibition presents the diversity of the movement, often considered the transposition of Pop Art in France. A particular highlight is Mimmo Rotella’s 8 Sopra (1960), a décollage on canvas that demonstrates Rotella’s use of lacerated posters – a technique later developed by other members of the group (until 11 August).
The Queen’s Diamond Jublilee celebrations continue at Richard Green (147 New Bond Street; +(0)20 7493 3939) with ‘Edward Seago: 1910–1974’. The painter was one of the Royal Family’s most admired 20th-century British artists – a portrait of the Queen and its accompanying preparatory work hang in the Duke of Edinburgh’s study. The 40 paintings on display here include many East Anglian subjects, such as the atmospheric oil English countryside, A Suffolk Farm. Seago lived at Ludham on the Norfolk Broads, and painted coastal and river scenes that captured the shifting light and skies dominating the flat landscape (until 7 July).
Gallery-goers have until 31 July to catch a show of Helaine Blumenfeld’s recent sculptures at Robert Bowman Modern (34 Duke Street; +44 (0)20 7930 8003). Finally, Marcus (170 New Bond Street; +44 (0)20 7290 6500) offers specially commissioned Swiss watches to celebrate its 10th anniversary, as well as showcasing a rare collection of vintage Audemars Piguet timepieces (until 2 October).
For those heading to the French Riviera this summer, be sure to visit Monaco where an abundance of exhibitions are presented by local galleries alongside the international fair Point Art Monaco (www.pointartmonaco.com). Now in its second year, Point Art Monaco, under the high patronage of Albert II, Prince of Monaco, takes place from 30 August until 2 September. As part of the event, local and international galleries exhibit an array of fine art and decorative works at the Sporting d’Hiver, the monumental art deco building on Place du Casino. Among this year’s participants is the Monaco-based Maison d’Art, offering Parmigianino’s arresting Portrait of a man holding a book inscribed ‘Franc. P.’ (Fig. 1). The unidentified sitter holds a small volume of poetry and his index finger marks a page, as if he has just stopped reading. Dated 1526, it was executed during the three-year period that the artist spent in Rome, and is particularly significant since Parmigianino produced few finished paintings while in the Italian city.
Renard Antiquités offers, meanwhile, a highly decorative, ormolu-mounted game table with a recently attributed Imperial provenance. The discovery of a 1797 invoice identifies this table as one of a series commissioned by Catherine the Great for the Winter Palace. Dated c. 1795–97, it was made by the renowned St Petersburg cabinetmaker Christian Meyer, with marquetry designs after Michael Angelo Pergolesi.Galerie Grippaldi presents Canaletto’s excep-tional oil, Venise, vue du Pont de Rialto (early 1730s). The Venetian master’s spectacular panoramic view is one of Canaletto’s many grand scenes of Venice, which portray the city’s pageantry, traditions and day-to-day activity in the 1700s.
Another highlight can be found on the stand of Galerie Adriano Ribolzi. A Meissen porcelain group, dated c. 1738/40 and identified as the model for a group by Johann Joachim Kändler, forms part of
a Louis XV ormolu-mounted clock (Fig. 2). In the centre of this charming group of figures is a crinoline lady, extending her hand out to be kissed by a suitor. Surrounding the clock face are soft-paste porcelain flowers produced by the Vincennes manufactory.
For a modern purchase Serge Ferat’s (1881–1958) enigmatic, undated gouache entitled New York is offered by MC Fine Arts, while Galleria A. Pallesi presents An episode of the conquest of Naples by Alfonso d’Aragona, a striking painting dated c. 1790 by Fedele Fischetti. For those looking to build their collection while in the principality,
Art Consultants Monaco can be found nearby on 3 Rue Comte Felix Castaldi (+ 377 97 70 23 70).
In the lead-up to Point Art Monaco, Monaco’s Opera Gallery (1 Avenue Henry Durant; +377 97 97 54 24) stages ‘From Impressionism to Pop Art’ from 7 July to 7 August. The exhibition brings together around 30 paintings by modern masters, including works by Chagall, Miró and Warhol.
Elsewhere, Paris’s Centre Pompidou sets up camp for the summer at Grimaldi Forum Monaco with the exhibition ‘Extra Large’, which showcases a cross section of works from the Pompidou’s modern and contemporary collections. Featuring recent acquisitions and works that have never before been exhibited in Europe, the show explores monumentality in art, and features works by Jean Dubuffet and Frank Stella alongside sculptures and installations by Joseph Beuys, Anish Kapoor and Sol LeWitt. Running from 13 July to 9 August, the exhibition also includes Daniel Buren and Xavier Veilhan’s 2007 collaboration La Cabane éclatée aux Paysages Fantômes (Fig. 3). Featured in the Centre Pompidou’s 2007 exhibition ‘Airs de Paris’, Buren has, together with Veilhan, reconfigured his exploded cabin for the Grimaldi Forum, creating a site-specific piece that questions the relationship between art and architecture.
Further afield in Europe, other fairs opening over the summer include Bamberg Art and Antiques Festival, which opens for business from 23 July to 20 August (www.bamberger-antiquitaeten.de). In Austria, Art Salzburg plays host to an array of dealers from 11 to 19 August (www.artsalzburg.info); while the coastal town of Knocke in Belgium hosts the 37th edition of Art Nocturne Knocke (www.artnocturneknocke.be), from 11 to 19 August.
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