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Almine Rech-Picasso Goes Global Ocula Conversation Almine Rech-Picasso Goes Global

French gallerist Almine Rech-Picasso opened her first space in Asia on Shanghai's historic Bund in July this year, bringing her eponymous gallery's total locations to five. The Shanghai gallery occupies roughly 4,000 square feet on the second floor of the three-storey Amber Building, a beautiful warehouse space, originally occupied by the Central...

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From the Gallery to the Streets: Home Works 8 in Beirut Ocula Report From the Gallery to the Streets: Home Works 8 in Beirut 8 Nov 2019 : Nat Muller for Ocula

There's an inside joke amongst the team of Ashkal Alwan, The Lebanese Association for Plastic Arts: that every time an edition of its biennial forum on cultural practices is planned, a national crisis happens. The eighth edition of Home Works was no different: it opened on 17 October amidst the most devastating wildfires that Lebanon had witnessed...

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Hans Hartung and Art Informel: Exhibition Walkthrough Ocula Insight | Video
Sponsored Content | Mazzoleni Gallery
Hans Hartung and Art Informel: Exhibition Walkthrough 15 October 2019

Hans Hartung and Art Informel at Mazzoleni London (1 October 2019-18 January 2020) presents key works by the French-German painter while highlighting his connection with artists active in Paris during the 50s and 60s. In this video, writer and historian Alan Montgomery discusses Hartung's practice and its legacy.Born in Leipzig in 1904, Hans...

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Elmgreen & Dragset

b. 1995, Denmark

Collaborating since 1997, artists Michael Elmgreen and Ingar Dragset (Elmgreen & Dragset) have actively challenged and reshaped contemporary ideas about the viewing and experiencing of art. Wit and subversive humour almost always accompany their works, as evident in Prada Marfa (2005), which saw the artists place a fake Prada store in the middle of a Texas desert town, and the large sculpture Van Gogh’s Ear (2016), which rendered the legendary ear using a domestic swimming pool. ‘The noblest role of art’, in the words of the artists, is ‘to reject responsibility, to exist beyond any logic, to not just be reduced to becoming a reaction to something else.’ 
 
Elmgreen & Dragset often seek to challenge the status quo of the art world while maintaining their signature humour. Entering the art world in the 1990s as ’outsiders’—with no academic background in art—the duo confronted the convention of the white cube literally by designing gallery spaces suspended from the ceiling, sunken into the ground or turned upside down. The transformation of these galleries was not simply whimsical; they also sought to reconfigure the rules that have dictated and continue to dictate the experience of art. 
 
The transformation of conventional space is as integral to Elmgreen & Dragset’s practice as the objects they may put in the space. In their 2015 show Aéroport Mille Plateaux, the duo transformed PLATEAU, Samsung Museum of Art, Seoul, into an airport. With chairs commonly found in airports and playbacks of announcements for arrivals and cancelled flights, the space dictated the experience and behaviour of its visitors. Through the transformation, the duo explored the interchangeability of institutional architecture.
 
Elmgreen & Dragset have also demonstrated their prowess as artist-curators on several occasions. At the 53rd Venice Biennale in 2009, in an unprecedented merging of two national pavilions, Elmgreen & Dragset curated the Danish and Nordic Pavilions as a single exhibition. Titled The Collectors, the exhibitions invited more than 20 artists and designers from the two respective countries to fill the homes of fictional art collectors. In transforming an otherwise competitive event into one of participation and intimacy, the duo subverted art world convention once more. Similarly, for their first exhibition in mainland China at the Ullens Centre for Contemporary Art, they turned the institution’s great hall into the site of an art fair. Presenting a selection of over 80 of their works from the past two decades, The Well Fair (2016) continued the artists’ longstanding interest in merging spaces to critique conventions of the art world. Each booth of the fair addressed larger sociocultural problems such as childhood and identity, while the fictive setting of the fair subverted the social hierarchy of artists and artworks found in commercial art fairs. Their success was further recognized by their appointment as the curators for the 15th Istanbul Biennial in 2017.
 
Based in Berlin, Elmgreen & Dragset have exhibited at numerous venues including Museum Haus Lange, Kunstmuseen Krefeld, Germany (2017); Tel Aviv Museum of Art, Israel (2016); Statens Museum for Kunst, Copenhagen (2014); Victoria & Albert Museum, London (2013–2014); Tate Modern, London (2004); and Kunsthalle Zürich (2001). In 2000, they were nominated for the Hugo Boss Prize, in 2002 they won the Preis der Nationalgalerie at Hamburger Bahnhof, Berlin, and in 2009 they were awarded Special Mention at that year's Venice Biennale for their effort as curators. 

Biography by Sherry Paik | Ocula | 2017
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Featured Artworks

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Untitled by Elmgreen & Dragset contemporary artwork
Elmgreen & DragsetUntitled, 2019 Steel, aluminium, lacquer
140 x 70 x 70 cm
Kukje Gallery
Tailbone (golden) by Elmgreen & Dragset contemporary artwork
Elmgreen & DragsetTailbone (golden), 2019 Polished bronze, steel, stainless steel, lacquer
Kukje Gallery
No Man Is An Island by Elmgreen & Dragset contemporary artwork
Elmgreen & DragsetNo Man Is An Island, 2019 Aluminium, polished bronze, lacquer
Kukje Gallery
Black Socks by Elmgreen & Dragset contemporary artwork
Elmgreen & DragsetBlack Socks, 2019 Aluminium, steel, lacquer, socks
119 x 62 x 80 cm
Kukje Gallery
Couple, Fig. 12 by Elmgreen & Dragset contemporary artwork
Elmgreen & DragsetCouple, Fig. 12, 2016 MDF, PVC, aluminum, stainless steel
220 x 142 cm
Perrotin
Eternity by Elmgreen & Dragset contemporary artwork
Elmgreen & DragsetEternity, 2014 Epoxy resin sculpture on wooden bed, bedding, white super matte lacquer finish
133 x 155 cm
Perrotin
Highway Painting, No. 6 by Elmgreen & Dragset contemporary artwork
Elmgreen & DragsetHighway Painting, No. 6, 2019 Paint on asphalt, aluminium
205 x 105 x 8 cm
Kukje Gallery

Recent Exhibitions

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Contemporary art exhibition, Group Exhibition, Taka Ishii Gallery 25th Anniversary: Survived! at Taka Ishii Gallery, Tokyo
Closed
25 June–27 July 2019 Group Exhibition Taka Ishii Gallery 25th Anniversary: Survived! Taka Ishii Gallery, Tokyo
Contemporary art exhibition, Group Exhibition, Taka Ishii Gallery 25th Anniversary: Survived! at Taka Ishii Gallery, Tokyo
Closed
25 June–27 July 2019 Group Exhibition Taka Ishii Gallery 25th Anniversary: Survived! Taka Ishii Gallery, Photography / Film, Tokyo
Contemporary art exhibition, Elmgreen & Dragset, Adaptations at Kukje Gallery, Seoul
Closed
21 March–28 April 2019 Elmgreen & Dragset Adaptations Kukje Gallery, Seoul

Represented By

In Ocula Magazine

Philip Tinari talks about Elmgreen & Dragset's 'The Well Fair' at UCCA, Beijing Ocula Insight Philip Tinari talks about Elmgreen & Dragset's 'The Well Fair' at UCCA, Beijing 26 January 2016

Since taking up the role of director at Ullens Center for Contemporary Art (UCCA) in Beijing in 2011, Philip Tinari has increasingly become known as one of the leading experts on contemporary Chinese art. UCCA is one of the most important non-profit art institutions in China, and Tinari manages an exhibition programme dedicated to promoting both...

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Elmgreen & Dragset Ocula Conversation Elmgreen & Dragset Artists, Scandinavia

The influential powers of the art market; its hierarchies and trends, provide the stage and spotlight that determines a contemporary artist’s career. Danish and Norwegian artist duo Michael Elmgreen and Ingar Dragset, aka Elmgreen & Dragset, have utilised these art world systems to their advantage, fuelling their practice and...

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Elmgreen & Dragset Ocula Conversation Elmgreen & Dragset Artists, Scandinavia

Subversive humor is at the heart of Michael Elmgreen and Ingar Dragset’s widely divergent contemporary works that often include the transformation of architectural spaces and sculpture. The Scandinavian duo met in the mid-nineties at a nightclub in Copenhagen, lived together for a decade, and still collaborate today from their respective...

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In Related Press

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The Shows to See in Copenhagen During Chart Related Press The Shows to See in Copenhagen During Chart Frieze : 29 August 2019

Danish collective SUPERFLEX follow Jeppe Hein in the creation of an installation in the moist, dark recesses of Copenhagen's fascinating former cisterns. 'It is not the end of the world', invites the viewer to enter a dystopian future set in a climate-ravaged city. Waterproof footwear is obligatory to enter the space and can be borrowed on site....

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Elmgreen & Dragset and Georg Jensen invite you to put your phones to bed Related Press Elmgreen & Dragset and Georg Jensen invite you to put your phones to bed Wallpaper* : 15 July 2019

Georg Jensen's HQ occupies a yellow-brick, former porcelain factory building in the leafy neighbourhood of Frederiksberg, Copenhagen. It's a suitably impressive place, befitting a world-renowned heritage brand, but what sets it apart is what it contains, rather than its architecture. On its first floor is the world's largest silver smithy, where...

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Elmgreen & Dragset's bar doesn't work (and that's the point) Related Press Elmgreen & Dragset's bar doesn't work (and that's the point) Phaidon News : 2 April 2019

There's a nice-looking bar at Elmgreen & Dragset's new show, Adaptations, at the Kukje Gallery in Seoul, South Korea. It's white, oval shaped, and is fitted with two bar taps, and looks pretty inviting ...

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Elmgreen & Dragset’s cavernous Berlin live-work space offers a clever twist on familiar structures Related Press Elmgreen & Dragset’s cavernous Berlin live-work space offers a clever twist on familiar structures Wallpaper* : 1 January 2019

Scandinavian art duo Michael Elmgreen and Ingar Dragset have become masters of the architectural installation over the past 13 years, picking up critical acclaim and international gallery shows as they go. Their work is characterised by presenting a familiar space in a different context.

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