Living with Art
5 February – 5 April
Akron Art Museum
They are dissolving the gallery walls over at Ohio’s Akron Art Museum, with a programme called Inside|Out, a new public art project that takes high quality reproductions of work from the Museum’s collection out into different neighbourhoods around Akron. Along the same line of innovative thinking comes Living with Art, for which interior designer Karen Starr has been invited to create a series of home interiors within the museum, each a bespoke setting for a work of art from the Museum’s collection, including a work by Larry Zox, illustrated here. Not only a challenge to the conventions of display used in most museums and art galleries, this exhibition highlights the skills of the local design community while posing interesting questions about what it means to acquire a work of art and share your home with it. A unique opportunity to relax and spend some time with great works of art in the next best thing to the comfort of your own home.
Marlene Dumas: The Image as Burden
5 February – 10 May
Tate Modern, London
Born in Cape Town and now resident in Amsterdam, Marlene Dumas’s work is set to gain a huge international audience with this significant survey exhibition at Tate Modern that charts her career from the early 1970s to the present. ‘I have always been interested in how you can depict suffering without being heavy-handed,’ Dumas once said, and her paintings exude psychological intensity despite their delicate touch, depicting the human experience in all its complexity. She paints from photographs, never from life, and so the likes of Princess Diana, Amy Winehouse and Osama bin Laden appear in her work, alongside less identifiable faces, including herself and her daughter. From seminal canvases to new works on paper, this is set to be a compelling show.
6 February – 3 May
Guggenheim Museum, New York
Tracking the international drifts of the notoriously elusive and poetic provocateur, this will be the first truly comprehensive survey of On Kawara (1932–2014), a Japanese artist whose works provided a humble index of his existence. Resident in New York from 1965 and a contributor to the 1976 Venice Biennale, On Kawara’s conceptual work emphasises language over the art object. Simple, smart and beautifully resonant, his eloquent gestures are represented here in all their forms: date paintings, postcards, telegrams, maps and lists of names. The show offers an opportunity to see drawings made throughout the mid-1960s for unrealised projects, alongside a live performance programme of readings that will ‘activate’ the artist’s encyclopaedic ledgers of names, dates and locations. For more on the exhibition, see our Art Digest major feature later this week.
LAST CHANCE TO SEE
Niki de Saint Phalle
Until 2 February
Galeries Nationales du Grand Palais, Paris
Sculptor, painter, performer and filmmaker Niki de Saint Phalle (1930–2002) is one of the most renowned artists of the mid-20th century. From subversive performances to joyful decorative sculptures, De Saint Phalle created a unique world where female mythology and contemporary politics were challenged and reinvented. With over 200 exhibits this major retrospective takes a new look at her work. Representing her large body of monumental public sculpture is The Tree of Life, a sculpture-fountain placed outside the Grand Palais for the duration of the show.
Until 8 February
Bildmuseet, Umeå, Sweden
You don’t have to go as far as the woods to see one possible source of inspiration for Brazilian design duo Humberto and Fernando Campana’s site-specific installation at the Bildmuseet in Umeå, northern Sweden. Opened in 2012, the seven-storey building by Henning Larsen Architects is clad in larch that, in the low sun, appears identical in colour to the straw and flax creations within. For their first ever show in Sweden, the Campanas take inspiration from nature, using everyday materials and traditional craft skills in unexpected ways, with their characteristic playfulness and humour.