For those visiting during Art Basel in Hong Kong (29–31 March 2019), the smell of fresh paint may still be in the air at the latest heritage conservation project, The Mills, which opened on 16 March to encompass the Centre for Heritage, Arts and Textiles (CHAT), joining the ranks with ex-prison complex Tai Kwun, along with Eaton HK—a retro...
Firenze Lai says that she knows her studio of a few hundred square feet intimately; from the textures of its surfaces to the way the breeze blows into the room. The spaces depicted in her paintings are equally intimate. When curators seem to be at a loss for words to discuss troubled times, fear of containment, and the feeling of being completely...
In Meiro Koizumi's three-channel video installation, The Angels of Testimony (2019), the central frame features an interview with Hajime Kondo about his time as a solider of the Imperial Japanese Army during the Second Sino-Japanese War. The conversation centres on war crimes perpetrated in China, including the beheading of Chinese prisoners for...
Melanie Manchot, Out of Bounds, Section A, 2016, still from video.
Eastbourne, UK — When artist Melanie Manchot started making work in the 1990s, she was deeply influenced by gender and feminist theories. Her most well-known series from that period consists of photographs depicting her naked mother in different locations, often placed against imposing natural landscapes. Since then, Manchot's work has shifted toward anthropology and philosophy, although certain themes, such as the tension between private and public spaces, individual experiences versus collective memory, still concern her.
People Places Prepositions, at Towner Art Gallery, premieres Manchot's Out of Bounds, 2016, a cinematic two-part installation shot in the Swiss Alpine valley of Engleberg, depicting the activities of alpine workers employed in the winter sports industry. Mountains are recurrent in Manchot's work. In the past years she's returned many times to the Alps, taking pictures and making videos of the inhabitants and environs, but never before has the artist produced such a lyrical piece as Out of Bounds.
'Photography is the backbone to everything I do and to how I think visually. I would suggest that most of my moving-image works, whether film or video, are strongly informed by photography - conceptually, aesthetically, in terms of their sense of time and duration. Cameras, whether still or moving, are crucial devices shaping the construction of the work. To me, cameras are not simply machines that generate the images I wish to make; more importantly, they are an organizing principle, an apparatus that becomes part of a set of relations I wish to create.'
Melanie Manchot's diverse and research-driven practice employs photography, video, film and sound. Her long-standing areas of enquiry range from portraiture to participation and performance, to questions of individual and collective identities, and to the exploration of the very particular socio-economic and ecological microclimate of a specific alpine mountain and its community. Situated at the threshold between the documentary and staged events, Manchot's work frequently involves an engagement with strangers.
Manchot's methodology is based on processes of exchange, contribution and collaboration, often involving groups or communities and creating expanded portraits of people, both their individual and social selves. The work thereby poses '... a series of related questions on how visual art might form a dialogue on notions of personhood, and how I might contribute to the ongoing investigations into different theories of the self.'
Manchot first came to prominence in the 1990s for a groundbreaking series of naked photographic portraits of her mother. When first exhibited the works received widespread attention and contributed to a growing debate around the representation of women, age and contested notions of body politics. Since 2000 Manchot has increasingly incorporated film and video installation in her work with the frame of reference expanding to include archive film, experimental film and cinematic history.
Recent projects include the multi-channel video installations Twelve (2015), an exploration of lives spent in addiction and recovery, and 11/18 (2015) a nine-screen durational studio portrait, seven years in the making, which enquires into the nature of time, duration and commitment. Out of Bounds (2016), a cinematic two-part installation shot in the Swiss Alps is part of an ongoing engagement with the landscape, culture and people of the village of Engelberg, a well known winter sports venue.
Since 1997 Melanie Manchot (born 1966, Witten, Germany) has exhibited internationally. Recent solo exhibitions include Towner Art Gallery, Eastbourne (2016), Aspex Gallery, Portsmouth (2016), fig-2 at the ICA, London (2015), Galerie M, Bochum (2015), the Toronto Photography Festival (2012), Nuit Blanche, Paris (2011) and the Whitechapel Art Gallery, London (2010). Important group exhibitions include the Marl Media Arts Awards at the Museum Marl, Germany (2016), Group Therapy, FACT, Liverpool (2015), Welde Art Award, Stadtgalerie Mannheim (2014), The Rhythm Is..., Museum Folkwang, Essen (2014), Situations, Musee d'Art Contemporaine, Paris (2012), Wunder, Deichtorhallen, Hamburg (2011), the New Forest Pavilion at the 52nd Biennale di Venezia (2007) and Global Feminisms at the Brooklyn Museum, New York (2007). Her work is included in important public and private collections including the Arts Council Collection, London, FMAC, Fonds Municipal d'Art Contemporain, Paris and the Brooklyn Museum, New York. The artist lives and works in London.
COPENHAGEN — Outside Denmark's Louisiana Museum of Modern Art on a recent late-summer morning, a few sunstruck visitors were sprawling on the turf of the sculpture garden, between monumental outdoor works by Alexander Calder and Richard Serra.
This week gave me a chance to consider human intervention in our environment. If Sondra Perry’s opening at the Serpentine uses digital tools to make our dark history extremely contemporary, Open Space Contemporary’s Adventitious Encounters exploits its location to explore our desire for nature in a technologically saturated world. The former...
The newly formed Holt-Smithson Foundation has made its first move to secure the legacy of the pioneering land artist Nancy Holt (1938–2014), better known for safeguarding the work of her husband, Robert Smithson, after he died in 1973 than for promoting her own.
I have the impression that in the Czech Republic education is more classically based than in some other European countries. For example, when it comes to literature, people learn the classics, they know what's what. Is it similar with the teaching of art in the Czech Republic, say compared to here in the UK?Ten or 15 years ago, when I was at the...
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