Advisory Picks

Advisory Picks presents artworks by artists who have captured the attention of our advisory team.

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William Kentridge’s Spellbinding Animations are the Star of his Royal Academy Show
30 September 2022
William Kentridge’s Spellbinding Animations are the Star of his Royal Academy Show 1
William Kentridge, Notes Towards a Model Opera (2015). Three-channel HD film. 11 min 14 sec. Exhibition view: William Kentridge, Royal Academy of Arts, London (24 September–11 December 2022). © William Kentridge. Photo: © Royal Academy of Arts/David Parry.
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Exhibition view: William Kentridge, Royal Academy of Arts, London (24 September–11 December 2022). © William Kentridge. Photo: © Royal Academy of Arts/David Parry.
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William Kentridge, Notes Towards a Model Opera (2015). Film. Exhibition view: William Kentridge, Royal Academy of Arts, London (24 September–11 December 2022). © William Kentridge. Photo: © Royal Academy of Arts/David Parry.
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Exhibition view: William Kentridge, Royal Academy of Arts, London (24 September–11 December 2022). © William Kentridge. Photo: © Royal Academy of Arts/David Parry.
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Exhibition view: William Kentridge, Royal Academy of Arts, London (24 September–11 December 2022). © William Kentridge. Photo: © Royal Academy of Arts/David Parry.
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Exhibition view: William Kentridge, Royal Academy of Arts, London (24 September–11 December 2022). © William Kentridge. Photo: © Royal Academy of Arts/David Parry.
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Exhibition view: William Kentridge, Royal Academy of Arts, London (24 September–11 December 2022). © William Kentridge. Photo: © Royal Academy of Arts/David Parry.
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Exhibition view: William Kentridge, Royal Academy of Arts, London (24 September–11 December 2022). © William Kentridge. Photo: © Royal Academy of Arts/David Parry.

William Kentridge's spellbinding animations offer a window into the world of this legendary South African artist.

London's Royal Academy of Arts has put on an ambitious and totally brilliant presentation in what is the largest exhibition of Kentridge's work in the U.K. to date. Spanning 40 years of the artist's extraordinary career, the show eloquently unfolds Kentridge's stories through etchings, sculptures, floor-to-ceiling drawings, four-metre wide tapestries, multi-channel films, and more.

Yet, it's his mesmerising animations that are the star of the show. In the ten-part film series, The Soho Chronicles, the viewer is met with multiple screens narrating the story of Soho Eckstein, Kentridge's fictional alter ego.

For over 20 years, Kentridge has worked on the hand-drawn animated film series, which beautifully narrates the anxieties he wrestles with as an artist.

William Kentridge is now open at the Royal Academy until 11 December 2022.

Woody De Othello’s Anthropomorphic Ceramics Take Over Karma
27 September 2022
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Woody De Othello, Secrets safe (2022). Ceramic, glaze, and wood pedestal. 58.5 x 22 x 22 inches. Courtesy Karma.
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Woody De Othello, Morning light (2022). Ceramic, glaze, wood, and lightbulb with wire. 48 x 20 x 20 inches. Courtesy Karma.
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Woody De Othello, Faucet (2022). Ceramic and glaze. 8 x 6 x 6 inches. Courtesy Karma.
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Woody De Othello, prying and prayer (2022). Bronze, ceramic, and glaze. 50 x 48 x 25 inches. Courtesy Karma.
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Woody De Othello, On my way home (2022). Ceramic, paint, and resin. 40 x 20 x 22 inches. Courtesy Karma.
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Woody De Othello, exhalation and praises (2022). Bronze, ceramic, and glaze. 48 x 32.5 x 61 inches. Courtesy Karma.

Woody De Othello's warped, anthropomorphic ceramics have taken over Karma for his solo exhibition, Maybe tomorrow at the gallery's 22 East 2nd Street space in New York.

Surrounded by the deep green walls of the gallery, Othello's alluring, unsettling sculptures are dotted around in a multitude of mise-en-scènes.

Since graduating in 2017 with an MFA from California College of the Arts, San Francisco, Woody De Othello has carved a name for himself with his distinct ceramic works that play with unexpected distortions of form.

Coated in vibrant reds, bronze, and magnetic black, Othello's sculptures hint at the West and Central African concept of nkisi, in which objects contain and release spiritual forces. Similarly, the tropical plants painted on the ceramic 'calendar', Faith in June (2022) nod to the artist's upbringing in Miami as the child of Haitian immigrants.

Concurrently, Woody's work is included in Hear Me Now: The Black Potters of Old Edgefield, South Carolina at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York (9 September 2022–5 February 2023).

Focusing on the work of African American potters in the 19th-century American South, Hear Me Now places close to 50 ceramic objects in dialogue with works by Black contemporary artists, including Simone Leigh and Theaster Gates.

Carmen Argote in Her Forms of Other
24 September 2022
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Carmen Argote, Protector: No (2022). Figs, acrylic, gesso, gel medium, crayon, and iron powder on paper. 74 x 56 cm (unframed), 84 x 64 x 5 cm (framed). Courtesy the artist and Commonwealth and Council, Los Angeles/Mexico City. Photo: Ian Byers-Gamber.
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Carmen Argote, Protector: Open (2022). Crayon, gel medium, and iron powder on paper. 71 x 55 cm (unframed), 84 x 64 x 5 cm (framed). Courtesy the artist and Commonwealth and Council, Los Angeles/Mexico City. Photo: Ian Byers-Gamber.
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Carmen Argote, Protector: Surrender (2022). Figs, acrylic, gesso, gel medium, crayon, and iron powder on paper. 74 x 56 cm (unframed), 84 x 64 x 5 cm (framed). Courtesy the artist and Commonwealth and Council, Los Angeles/Mexico City. Photo: Ian Byers-Gamber.

The works of Mexican-born, Los Angeles-based artist Carmen Argote were an Advisory favourite at Commonwealth and Council's booth in Frieze Seoul earlier this month.

Open now at Commonwealth and Council's Mexico City gallery is Argote's solo exhibition, Her Forms of Other (24 September–29 October 2022).

Featuring works from the artist's ongoing 'Mother' series, the presentation encapsulates Argote's visceral, tactile approach to art-making in seamlessly woven personal explorations.⁠⁠

Paintings and mixed media works are composed of assemblages of conventional media and found materials—with crayon, acrylic, iron powder, rubber bands, figs, and palm fronds recurring throughout.

Argote's standout 'Protector' drawings present evocative, abstracted portraits. With the artist's fingerprints almost tangible on the paper surface, these works illustrate uninhibited expression and a material intuition.

Carmen Argote's solo exhibition, Filtration System for a Process-based Practice, is currently on show at Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego until 23 October 2022.

Michael Armitage’s Penchant for Storytelling Arrives at White Cube
21 September 2022
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Michael Armitage, Curfew (Likoni March 27 2020) (2021). Oil on Lubugo bark cloth. 250 x 350 cm. Courtesy Ocula. Photo: Annabel Downes, Ocula Advisory.
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Exhibition View: Michael Armitage, Amongst the Living with Seyni Awa Camara, White Cube Bermondsey, London (21 September–30 October 2022). Courtesy Ocula. Photo: Annabel Downes, Ocula Advisory.
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Exhibition View: Michael Armitage, Amongst the Living with Seyni Awa Camara, White Cube Bermondsey, London (21 September–30 October 2022). Courtesy Ocula. Photo: Annabel Downes, Ocula Advisory.
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Michael Armitage, Three Boys at Dawn (2022). Oil on Lubugobark cloth. 220 x 300 cm. Courtesy Ocula. Photo: Annabel Downes, Ocula Advisory.
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Michael Armitage, Dandora (Xala, Musicians) (2022) (detail). Oil on Lubugo bark cloth. 220 x 440 cm. Courtesy Ocula. Photo: Annabel Downes, Ocula Advisory.
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Michael Armitage, Head of Koitalel (2021). Oil on Lubugo bark cloth. 65.5 x 50.3 cm. Courtesy Ocula. Photo: Annabel Downes, Ocula Advisory.
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Michael Armitage, Witness (2022). Oil on Lubugo bark cloth. 170.5 x 220.5 cm. Courtesy Ocula. Photo: Annabel Downes, Ocula Advisory.
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Michael Armitage, Amongst the Living (2022) (detail). Oil on Lubugo bark cloth. 220 x 420 cm. Courtesy Ocula. Photo: Annabel Downes, Ocula Advisory.
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Michael Armitage, Dandora (Xala, Musicians) (2022) (detail). Oil on Lubugo bark cloth. 220 x 440 cm. Courtesy Ocula. Photo: Annabel Downes, Ocula Advisory.

Michael Armitage has an innate ability to meld narratives and materials to tell the stories of his native Kenya.

Armitage paints on Lubugo cloth, the traditional Ugandan bark cloth. What is particularly magical about this show is the way the artist incorporates craft techniques and natural material properties into his visual narratives: upon closer inspection, you can see how his stitching acts as veins along vines and branches, while in other areas, it creates divisions between embracing individuals across his compositions.

Michael Armitage's paintings and drawings are shown alongside the sculptures of artist Seyni Awa Camara. Hand-modelled with earth that is mixed into a clay, Camara's totemic sculptures give shape to the stories, observations, and feelings she has experienced as a Senegalese woman.

Amongst the Living, with Seyni Awa Camara is open at White Cube Bermondsey from 21 September to 30 October 2022.

Jill Mulleady’s Paintings Depict Dreamlike Scenery at Gladstone Gallery
17 September 2022
Jill Mulleady’s Paintings Depict Dreamlike Scenery at Gladstone Gallery 1
Jill Mulleady's Los Angeles Studio. Courtesy Gladstone Gallery, New York.
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Jill Mulleady, A Sun for the Sleepers (2022) (detail). Oil on linen. 127.3 x 266.1 cm. Courtesy Gladstone Gallery, New York.
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Jill Mulleady, All Flowers in Time Bend Towards the Sun (2022) (detail). Oil on linen. 112 x 55 cm. Courtesy Gladstone Gallery, New York.
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Jill Mulleady, The Vampire (2022). Oil on linen. 127 x 266.1 cm. Courtesy Gladstone Gallery, New York.

Jill Mulleady's weird and wonderful compositions possess a theatrical flair. In the Los Angeles-based artist's latest exhibition, Bend Towards The Sun at New York's Gladstone Gallery (15 September–22 October 2022), reality and imagination are blended in new works that reference Francisco Goya's 'Black Paintings'.

Mulleady takes the precise dimensions of the 14 works in Goya's canonical series as a starting point for her own canvases. The resulting CinemaScopic presentations of landscapes and interiors are the stars of the show.

Mulleady's images get under your skin: unsettling female figures stare out of the canvas, and surprising elements from the natural world punctuate dreamlike, post-apocalyptic scenes.

Mulleady graduated with a Masters in Fine Arts from the Chelsea College of Arts, London, in 2009. In 2011, she received an award in the Art in Perpetuity Trust's visual arts competition in London.Mulleady currently also has work showing in David Zwirner's online group exhibition, A Maze Zanine, Amaze Zaning, A-Mezzaning, Meza-9 (9 September–15 October 2022).

Helen Marten Challenges the Relationship Between Two- and Three-Dimensional Form
16 September 2022

Oblique and thought-provoking, Helen Marten's new exhibition unfolds a formulation of a narrative from displaced imagery and unfulfilled language.

Third Moment Profile | The Almost Horse features 26 paintings (one for every letter of the alphabet) by the Turner Prize-winning artist, presented by Sadie Coles HQ, London (14 September–29 October 2022).

The 26 works, each of equal size, offer slightly different renderings of the same mundane, abstracted landscape viewed through a window. To the right of these vistas are an accompanying 'page' of a fictional tale written by the artist.

Marten's combinations of collage, screen print, and painterly marks disorientate and disrupt the viewer's perception with each successive work.

Encompassing a broad range of materials and concepts, Marten's distinctive style marks her as one of the most exciting artists working in London.

Marten's work is held in major permanent collections including MoMA, Guggenheim, and Tate. Her work featured in the 55th and the 56th Venice Biennales, as well as the 12th Lyon Biennale. In 2016, she was the recipient of both the Turner Prize and the inaugural Hepworth Prize for Sculpture. Marten published her first novel, The Boiled in Between, in 2020. She is currently working on her second novel, A Polite History of Vandalism.

Images: Exhibition view: Helen Marten, Third Moment Profile | The Almost Horse, Sadie Coles HQ, London (14 September–29 October 2022). Courtesy Ocula. Photo: Rory Mitchell, Ocula Advisory.

Issy Wood’s Textured Paintings Evoke Uncanny Aesthetics at Michael Werner
13 September 2022
Issy Wood’s Textured Paintings Evoke Uncanny Aesthetics at Michael Werner 1
Exhibition view: Issy Wood, Time Sensitive, Michael Werner, New York (6 September–12 November 2022). Courtesy Ocula. Photo: Annabel Downes, Ocula Advisory.
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Exhibition view: Issy Wood, Time Sensitive, Michael Werner, New York (6 September–12 November 2022). Courtesy Ocula. Photo: Annabel Downes, Ocula Advisory.
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Exhibition view: Issy Wood, Time Sensitive, Michael Werner, New York (6 September–12 November 2022). Courtesy Ocula. Photo: Annabel Downes, Ocula Advisory.
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Exhibition view: Issy Wood, Time Sensitive, Michael Werner, New York (6 September–12 November 2022). Courtesy Ocula. Photo: Annabel Downes, Ocula Advisory.
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Exhibition view: Issy Wood, Time Sensitive, Michael Werner, New York (6 September–12 November 2022). Courtesy Ocula. Photo: Annabel Downes, Ocula Advisory.
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Exhibition view: Issy Wood, Time Sensitive, Michael Werner, New York (6 September–12 November 2022). Courtesy Ocula. Photo: Annabel Downes, Ocula Advisory.
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Exhibition view: Issy Wood, Time Sensitive, Michael Werner, New York (6 September–12 November 2022). Courtesy Ocula. Photo: Annabel Downes, Ocula Advisory.
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Issy Wood, Go, Daddy! (Naming names) (2022) (detail). Oil on velvet. 93 x 93 cm. Courtesy Ocula. Photo: Annabel Downes, Ocula Advisory.

Issy Wood's paintings are both seductive and unsettling. A self-described 'medieval millennial', Wood renders contemporary subjects and concerns in a distinctly uncanny, hyperreal style.

Open now at New York's Michael Werner is Time Sensitive (9 September–12 November 2022), a solo exhibition of new paintings by the American-born, London-based artist.

Wood depicts everyday objects, honing in on evocative textures and surfaces. Polished kitchenware, glossy leather, and gleaming sets of teeth reveal a realm of deeply intimate moments.

Cropped snapshots, such as that of a leather seat in Neapolitan (How you really feel) (2021), and lace lingerie in Untitled (Me time) (2022), suggest a reflection on the artist's experience of contemporary life. Often taking the form of extreme close-ups, Wood's compositions might be considered fetishistic—or, as Barry Schwabsky described in Artforum, 'perverted realism'.

By using oils on unconventional substrates such as velvet and leather, Wood tempts viewers to experience her paintings as tactile, sensory objects with depth, subverting a two-dimensional reading.

Wood is a graduate of Goldsmiths (2015) and the Royal Academy Schools, London (2018). She is also an electronic-pop musician, with her latest album, My Body Your Choice (2022), featuring her own paintings on the cover art.

In 2022, Wood featured in the group exhibition Artists Inspired by Music: Interscope Reimagined at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. In 2023, she will exhibit in the group show Brave New World: 20 Painters for the 21st Century at the Museum De Fundatie in Zwolle, Netherlands.

Wolfgang Tillmans Captures Candid Moments in MoMA Retrospective
10 September 2022

Wolfgang Tillmans' distinct approach to art explores human connection and the poetics of intimacy in the contemporary world.

Wolfgang Tillmans: To look without fear is the most comprehensive exhibition in the artist's career to date. Comprised of 417 works made over three-decades, it thoroughly explores Tillmans' use of art as a means of engaging in social and political dialogue.

The breadth of Tillmans' photographic practice is vast. Navigating between delicate still lifes, tender portraits, vivid nightlife imagery and astronomical observations, Tillmans' photography considers every genre of the medium. While his subjects vary, so do his methods. Experimentation is a crucial part of Tillman's process, making each artwork entirely unique.

Typically unconventional in hang, MoMA's presentation of Tillmans' work is informal. The work is displayed unframed, attached to the walls by tape, pins or clips and hung together with black and white photographs and video projections. Each room offers an eclectic collection of imagery that expertly depicts Tillmans' ability to capture the transient.

Wolfgang Tillmans: To look without fear is open at MoMA in New York from 12 September 2022 to 1 January 2023.

Images: Exhibition view: Wolfgang Tillmans, To look without fear, Museum of Modern Art, New York (12 September 2022–1 January 2023). Courtesy Ocula. Photo: Annabel Downes, Ocula Advisory.

Victor Man's Starry Dreams at Galerie Max Hetzler
6 September 2022
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Victor Man, Eyelids, Towards Evening (2022). Oil on canvas. Courtesy Galerie Max Hetzler, Paris.
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Victor Man, Girl with Laughing Cat (2022). Oil on canvas. Courtesy Galerie Max Hetzler, Paris.
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Victor Man, Untitled (From Wounds and Starry Dreams) (2022). Oil on canvas. Courtesy Galerie Max Hetzler, Paris.

Presented at Galerie Max Hetzler in Paris is From Wounds and Starry Dreams, a solo exhibition by Romanian-born painter Victor Man. The show features a suite of melancholic, introspective portraits in moody hues of green and blue, reminiscent of the cool pallor of Picasso's Blue Period paintings.

Three astonishing new works (all 2022) capture the psychological precision for which Man has become known. Eyelids, Towards Evening depicts a sleeping woman resting her head against a pillow; Girl with Laughing Cat tenderly portrays the relationship between person and pet; and Untitled (From Wounds and Starry Dreams) stages a modest portrait of a young woman. Typically working with oils on a small scale, Man is able to achieve a depth of colour and atmosphere in his portraits with a poignant, dreamlike ambivalence.

Despite having painted since the 1990s, Man has only in more recent years gained more widespread international recognition. He represented Romania at the Venice Biennale in 2007, and was featured also in the biennale's 2015 iteration too. In 2014, he was awarded the Deutsche Bank Artist of the Year.

With few of his works coming to auction, Victor Man has not yet shared the market acclaim of his Romanian contemporary Adrian Ghenie. Recently, however, Man's works have caught the attention of a number of influential collectors, and the market appears to be catching up. In March this year, his portrait D with Raven (2015) was the star of the show at Christie's 20th/21st Century: London Evening Sale. Selling for ten times its estimate, the result represents a newfound interest and confidence in the artist. ⁠⁠

Chronicling the mind of Frank Walter at Xavier Hufkens
27 August 2022
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Frank Walter, Sir George Walter Counting with his Fingers (n.d.). Oil on cardboard. 28.5 × 24 cm. Courtesy Walter Family and Xavier Hufkens, Brussels. Photo: Kenneth M. Milton Fine Arts.
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Frank Walter, Untitled (n.d.). Oil on cardboard. 15.8 × 12 cm. Courtesy Walter Family and Xavier Hufkens, Brussels. Photo: Kenneth M. Milton Fine Arts.
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Frank Walter, Untitled (n.d.). Oil on linoleum on fibreboard. 21.8 cm diameter. Courtesy Walter Family and Xavier Hufkens, Brussels. Photo: Kenneth M. Milton Fine Arts.
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Frank Walter, Untitled (Self-Portrait) (n.d.). Oil on cardboard. 20.4 × 25.2 cm. Courtesy Walter Family and Xavier Hufkens, Brussels. Photo: Kenneth M. Milton Fine Arts.
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Frank Walter (ca.1989). Courtesy Walter Family and Xavier Hufkens, Brussels.

Xavier Hufkens presents the first European retrospective of Antiguan artist and polymath Frank Walter (1926–2009).

Francis Archibald Wentworth Walter spent his formative years working in a sugar plantation, at the time a major industry in the Caribbean, before leaving to travel in the 1950s. He lived and worked in England, Scotland, and wider Europe, where he faced persistent discrimination.

Walter returned to Antigua in the 1960s, where he became increasingly reclusive, and prolific in his artistic output—producing thousands of paintings and photographs, as well as texts that reveal his visionary voice.

Though his works received little recognition during his lifetime, Walter has gained increasing posthumous attention, with his work included at the Venice Biennale in 2017 and in 2019.

Many of his works are undated and untitled, and are host to a rich spectrum of real and imagined subjects. Frank Walter's Chessboard chronicles the complex internal landscape of an itinerant artist grappling with visions ahead of his time.

As Stephanie Bailey wrote for Ocula Magazine, Walter's paintings reflect a 'search of worlds capable of accommodating the depth and breadth of far-reaching hopes and visions. He was at once a product of his time and lights years ahead of it; an artist who left universes to explore in his wake'.

⁠⁠Frank Walter's Chessboard is open at Xavier Hufkens' Rivoli gallery from 26 August–22 October 2022.

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