Sámi Stories: Art and Identity of an Arctic People – Scandinavia House in New York

19 May, 2014 at 08:59 | Posted in Culture | Leave a comment
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Saturday, May 10 through Saturday, August 23, 2014
Free admission | #samistories

Curated by the Tromsø University Museum and Northern Norway Art Museum, Sámi Stories: Art and Identity of an Arctic People is a landmark exhibition examining the history, identity, politics, and visual culture of the Sámi, the indigenous people of Finland, Norway, Sweden, and Russia’s Kola Peninsula.

Featuring a selection of contemporary artworks and traditional duodji (handicraft)—including a reindeer milk scoop, shaman’s drum, cradle, and a selection of hats and dolls—Sámi Stories: Art and Identity of an Arctic People offers visitors an overview of Sámi history and visual culture from the 17th century to the present.

Read more: Scandinavia House – The Nordic Center in America

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City of Gold: Tomb and Temple in Ancient Cyprus

20 November, 2012 at 07:08 | Posted in Culture | Leave a comment
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Exhibition at Princeton dazzles with ancient art

By Michele A.F. Kidwell

Crossroads of the Mediterranean, crossroads of ancient civilizations, crossroads of many cultures from Greece to Turkey and from Israel to Egypt, Cyprus has been long renowned for its gracious beauty, which transcends epochs and nationalities.

This remarkable land enters the realm of mythology as the birthplace of Aphrodite and location where Helen, accompanied by Menelaus, tarried upon returning from the Trojan Wars.

Yet, reality equally intrigues: Cyprus is the chosen birthplace of Caesarion, Cleopatra’s son with Julius Caesar.

The installation traces the history of this fascinating site from its prehistoric origins to its artistic pinnacle—a glorious city once named Marion in the eighth century, when it was founded.

The Republic of Cyprus embarked upon a number of festive events to celebrate its assuming the presidency of the European Union. Among these, President and Mrs. Christofias hosted a concert at Lincoln Center; Ambassador Emiliou spoke to members of the Foreign Press Association; and Consul General Sophianou lectured at the European Union Studies Center at The Graduate Center of City University of New York.

Further, four extraordinary exhibitions have been mounted in Belgium, France, Cyprus, and now the United States. The City of Gold: Tomb and Temple in Ancient Cyprus is fittingly held at the Princeton University Art Museum.

Over half the objects on display have been unearthed by the Princeton University Archaeological Expedition to Polis Chrysochous, Cyprus, directed by Professor Emeritus William A.P. Childs from 1983 to 2007.

The installation traces the history of this fascinating site from its prehistoric origins to its artistic pinnacle—a glorious city once named Marion in the eighth century, when it was founded.

It was subsequently called Arsinoe after the wife of Pharaoh Ptolemy II Philadelphos during Ptolemaic and Roman times and is known in the modern era as Polis Chrysochous or City flowing with Gold.

There is no clear reason for Chrysochous’s name. Scholars propose that it may refer to someone’s name, to the fertile soil, to the area studded with copper mines, to Marion’s large number of goldsmiths, to the numerous golden tomb gifts found.

Yet, other towns with more gold offerings and a similar terrain do not have the word “gold” appear as part of their name.

The Exhibition

Spanning varying periods, the exhibition includes over 100 artifacts of painted frescoes, pottery, gold jewelry, seals, coins, as well as sculptures of marble, bronze, terracotta, and limestone.

Archaeology often involves uncovering layers of earth to reach the earliest strata, sometimes destroying evidence of splendid marvels beneath.

With the excavation context unknown, it may become difficult to determine an object’s origin and period of production, which is wonderfully not the case here.

Fortuitously, teams from Germany, England, Cyprus, Sweden, and the United States documented much of what they dug up while preserving vaunted treasures.

Due to its abundant copper and strategic position on the northwestern coast, Marion became the seat of one of the most important Cypriot kingdoms.

Because of its special commercial relationship with Athens, the city received in time many cultural benefits.

Pliny the Elder (the Roman author who described the destruction of Pompeii) wrote about a bronze caster from Cyprus called Styppax. This artist worked in Athens under Pheidias, who was in charge of the Parthenon’s construction, and created a statue for the great statesman Pericles. This fact is proof that artists from Cyprus labored in Athens and could transmit knowledge of the Greek classical style to their island home.

The objects from the Marion period are the high points of this show. They call attention to themselves by their exciting beauty and may blend artistic traditions.

Read more: City of Gold: Tomb and Temple in Ancient Cyprus | Literary & Visual Arts | Arts & Entertainment | Epoch Times

The City of Gold: Tomb and Temple in Ancient Cyprus exhibition is running at the Princeton University Art Museum through Jan. 20.

Photos and Paintings Track Medieval Icelandic Sagas in Manhattan Exhibit

6 October, 2012 at 18:39 | Posted in Culture, picture of the day | Leave a comment
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By Evan Mantyk
Epoch Times Staff

NEW YORK—The English-speaking world has the tales of King Arthur. The Arab world has “One Thousand and One Nights.” The Scandinavian people of Iceland have the “Íslendingasögur,” or “The Sagas of Icelanders”—which are arguably more embedded in the landscape of its people than other ancient tales.

While the English might speculate about the location of Camelot, Icelanders know the exact locations of the sagas, even down to the farms featured in the stories.

“We have people living in the same farms,” said renowned Icelandic photographer Einar Falur Ingólfsson.

A new exhibit of paintings and photographs at Scandinavia House, in Midtown Manhattan, tiptoes across the centuries to make the sagas vividly come to life.

Read more: Photos and Paintings Track Medieval Icelandic Sagas in Manhattan Exhibit | Literary & Visual Arts | Arts & Entertainment | Epoch Times

Seventeenth Century Chinese Artists Expressed Subtle Dissent

20 December, 2011 at 11:22 | Posted in Chinese culture | Leave a comment
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Interesting exhibition at Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City,
until January 2, 2012.

Ming-loyalist art at the Met: grace under fire

By Betsy Kim

NEW YORK—If you are curious about the art of people protesting against the government in China during the 1600s, the paintings, calligraphies, poems, and carved objects, now on display at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City may surprise you.

Walking through the exhibit The Art of Dissent in 17th-Century China, subtitled Masterpieces of Ming Loyalist Art from the Chi Lo Lou Collection, offers a subdued, peaceful, and contemplative experience.

Under siege by peasant rebellion and the invasion of the Manchus, the 300-year-old Ming Dynasty collapsed with its last emperor hanging himself in the gardens outside of the Forbidden City (the Imperial Palace) in Beijing in 1644.

Ming loyalists—government officials, scholars, and members of the imperial house—resisted the new Qing (Manchu) Dynasty, leaving their legacy in historically and artistically significant masterpieces.

In contrast with flamboyant, graphic depictions of violence that capture cataclysmic upheaval in Western art, these artists expressed dissent with subtlety. In muted palettes, tones of gold, brown, ivory, black, gray, and blue, the exhibit displays a beauty of orderly, artistic discipline and restraint. The works symbolize refuge in nature, moral virtues, and defiance through idiosyncratic styles.

Paintings and Carvings

Bada Shanren (1626–1705), born into Ming royal lineage, escaped persecution by becoming a Buddhist monk and later a painter. The Met’s gallery label notes his painting “Fish” expressed defiance with the animal’s menacing stare and bloated belly.

“Its upturned eye creates an image that is almost human. Seemingly suspended in midair with its tail half cropped, the fish may symbolize the displacement and bereavement of all native Chinese,” the label states.

Shitao (1642–1707), also of the Ming royal family, painted bamboo and orchids in a traditional manner of the imperial court. Created together with artist Wang Hui, Shitao’s “Orchids, Bamboo, and Rocks” hangs beside his ink on paper scroll, “Bamboo and Rock.”

The gallery label explains that bamboo represents integrity, and orchids symbolize purity. Thus, the paintings pay homage to transcendent ideals. In his second painting, Shitao creates depth, using leaves in varying shades of black, with grays receding to the background. The blowing leaves resemble dark birds in incessant flight.

To maximize the intellectual and emotional impact, set aside a minimum of two hours to view the art at an unhurried pace. Take the time to read the historical information in the galleries. Visually absorb and compare the different works of art. Distinctive styles of the calligraphies and landscapes will emerge with clarity.

Amelia Bryne and Peter Norrman, both filmmakers, came from Brooklyn, specifically to see this exhibit. With a background in cultural anthropology, Bryne gravitated toward the brush holders, brushes, water bowls, seals, and ink tablets. She enjoyed “thinking about the actual physical objects people used to make something.”

The ivory and bamboo brush holders showcase intricate, deeply chiseled engravings that cradle the delicacy of a miniature theater.

Gu Jue (late 17th century) carved a brush holder that depicts the famous poem “Ode to the Pavilion of the Inebriated Old Man.” The meticulously detailed scene shows pine trees, clouds, and the sky partially covering the thatched roof of a pavilion that shelters people. An almost 3-D, small diorama circles around the container.

Read more: Seventeenth Century Chinese Artists Expressed Subtle Dissent | Literary & Visual Arts | Arts & Entertainment | Epoch Times

”The Arts of Zhen Shan Ren” – in Gothenburg June 30 – 15 July

1 July, 2011 at 21:17 | Posted in Chinese culture, Falun Dafa/Falun Gong | Leave a comment
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”The Arts of Zhen Shan Ren”
(The Art of Truthfulness, Compassion and Tolerance)

http://www.theartofzhenshanren.org (In Chinese, English and Spanish)

The Art of Truth, Compassion, Tolerance consists of works from over twelve artists. Their backgrounds are varied and diverse in terms of professional experience, artistic styles and cultural upbringing. What they have in common in their practice of Falun Gong is united in an effort to express the myriad of experiences of living in it.

It was the release of Professor Kunlun Zhang, arrested for his belief in Falun Gong, from a Chinese brainwashing center in 2001 that spurred communication between the artists, many of whom have never even met face to face. In the course of sharing experiences and understandings over three years, the ideas for the exhibit began to take shape. Realist oil painting, or New-Renaissance, was chosen as the style for its narrative capabilities, accessibility and, above all, its simplistic purity. The exhibit would encompass four main themes: harmony, adversity, courage and justice.

The exhibition is displayed at the Gothenburg Public Library June 30 – 15 July
Open: Mon-Fri 10-19.30, Sat 11-16.30

Read more: Falun Dafa Art Center

Cooper & Gorfer “My Quiet of Gold” in Gothenburg!

2 March, 2011 at 21:51 | Posted in Culture, picture of the day | 2 Comments
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Exhibition: Cooper & Gorfer My Quiet of Gold

February 25–May 15 2011

HASSELBLAD FOUNDATION The work of Gothenburgbased artist duo Sarah Cooper (USA) and Nina Gorfer (Austria) belongs to a narrative tradition within photography, with roots in 18th and 19th century painting. Their staged photographs hold distinct reference to fables and myths. Sarah Cooper and Nina Gorfer are choreographers behind their images. Their working process is intuitive and organic. Curiosity attracts them to unknown places where they tactfully and sensitivelly observe the surroundings. Ideas come about and are realized in close collaboration with the people they portray. The exhibition at the Hasselblad Center focuses on the photographs from a journey to Kyrgyzstan, which depict the collective memories and folk tales of a people. The images are processed digitally, forming picturesque collages in which the stories are never linear. Instead they suggest multifaceted and dream like realities.

via Current exhibition

The Known Universe

11 June, 2010 at 10:52 | Posted in Science | Leave a comment
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From an exhibition “Visions of the Cosmos: From the Milky Ocean to an Evolving Universe”, at the Rubin Museum of Art in Manhattan, through May 2010.

“The Known Universe takes viewers from the Himalayas through our atmosphere and the inky black of space to the afterglow of the Big Bang. Every star, planet, and quasar seen in the film is possible because of the world’s most complete four-dimensional map of the universe, the Digital Universe Atlas that is maintained and updated by astrophysicists at the American Museum of Natural History. The new film, created by the Museum, is part of an exhibition, Visions of the Cosmos: From the Milky Ocean to an Evolving Universe, at the Rubin Museum of Art in Manhattan through May 2010.”

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“And there was Light” Unique Art Exhibition

23 March, 2010 at 08:52 | Posted in Culture | 2 Comments
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With the start in Sweden, Gothenburg, a unique art exhibition open its doors with the works of the Renaissance masters Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo and Raphael, displayed in a different and innovative way. The exhibition will then tour around the world for 8! years. So why not schedule a visit this summer to the beautiful country of Sweden? 🙂 The exhibition will run between 20 March to 15 Aug 2010.

To the webpage of the Exhibition

La Bella Principessa, a previously unknown work by Leonardo da Vinci, are an attraction at the exhibition. In the middle an engraving that depicts Michelangelo in profile, conducted by Francesco Bartolozzi. To the right, Raphael's Holy Family (cropped). (Please click on the picture if you want to read the Swedish article)

Priceless Art Exhibition

The exhibition includes original pieces by three Italian Renaissance masters, Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo and Rafael. These three Masters lived at the same time, knew and influenced each other, and were even rivals for the same contracts.

[Alessandro Vezzosi, Exhibition’s Artistic Director] :
“The Renaissance was influenced by ancient cultures and civilizations including Greece, Rome, India and China. In particular for Leonardo, the idea of a Renaissance civilization is a model for today.”

The most spectacular piece in the exhibition is ‘La Bella Principessa’ which was recently confirmed as a genuine Leonardo. This is the painting’s first public appearance and it is now valued at a hundred million euros. But the painting was first thought to be painted by a minor German artist.

[Pascal Cotte, CTO Lumiere Technology]:
“I have a new knowledge about painting because I have what we call the multi spectral knowledge. It’s a new way to investigate inside the pictorial layer to investigate the painting or a drawing. I discovered one piece of the puzzle and after one another piece and after that another piece, at the end when you have completed the puzzle you realize that all the pieces fit exactly each one together. The final touch was of course the fingerprint. When I discovered the fingerprint on the top left of the drawing, we made a comparison with a fingerprint found on Saint Jerome, another famous painting by Leonardo, and it matched perfectly. It matched historically and it matched scientifically, so it’s proved now, it’s a da Vinci.”

A big part of the exhibition is dedicated to the genius of Leonardo’s visions and inventions 500 years ago. It also includes around 50 original pieces from the renaissance, which most are privately owned and have rarely or never been shown in public. The exhibition called “And there was Light” is planned to tour around the world for several years, and where it will go from here is still unknown.

Bolette Ebertz, NTD News, Gothenburg, Sweden.

The exhibition includes original pieces by three Italian Renaissance masters, Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo and Rafael. These three Masters lived at the same time, knew and influenced each other, and were even rivals for the same contracts.

[Alessandro Vezzosi, Exhibition’s Artistic Director] :

“The Renaissance was influenced by ancient cultures and civilizations including Greece, Rome, India and China. In particular for Leonardo, the idea of a Renaissance civilization is a model for today.”

The most spectacular piece in the exhibition is ‘La Bella Principessa’ which was recently confirmed as a genuine Leonardo. This is the painting’s first public appearance and it is now valued at a hundred million euros. But the painting was first thought to be painted by a minor German artist.

[Pascal Cotte, CTO Lumiere Technology]:

“I have a new knowledge about painting because I have what we call the multi spectral knowledge. It’s a new way to investigate inside the pictorial layer to investigate the painting or a drawing. I discovered one piece of the puzzle and after one another piece and after that another piece, at the end when you have completed the puzzle you realize that all the pieces fit exactly each one together. The final touch was of course the fingerprint. When I discovered the fingerprint on the top left of the drawing, we made a comparison with a fingerprint found on Saint Jerome, another famous painting by Leonardo, and it matched perfectly. It matched historically and it matched scientifically, so it’s proved now, it’s a da Vinci.”

A big part of the exhibition is dedicated to the genius of Leonardo’s visions and inventions 500 years ago. It also includes around 50 original pieces from the renaissance, which most are privately owned and have rarely or never been shown in public. The exhibition called “And there was Light” is planned to tour around the world for several years, and where it will go from here is still unknown.

Bolette Ebertz, NTD News, Gothenburg, Sweden.

Art Deco sculptures in the “Big Sculptural Salon” exhibition

11 March, 2010 at 10:07 | Posted in Culture | Leave a comment
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The “Big Sculptural Salon” exhibition of sculptures opened in Kiev on Tuesday.

One of the attractions of the exhibition is the display by the Romanian master, the brightest representative of Art Deco style, Dmitry Chiparus.

[Natalia Zabolotnaya, Organizer]:

“This style is distinguished from others by the fact that it allows you to combine several materials: bronze and precious and semi precious materials such as gold, silver and, of course, ivory.

Decorative works of Dmitry Chiparus combine elegance and luxury. The works mostly display beautiful women from the beginning of the last century.

[Igor Voronov, Owner of the collection of Dmitry Chiparus]:
“The plastic is expressed here quite prominently, in any sculpture. They are quite symbolic.”

Collector`s favorite sculpture “Shiva” was sold for a record sum of 510-thousand dollars at Sotheby’s in Paris. Today the works of Dmitry Chiparus are the most sought-after items of art deco style.

[Oleg Salmin, Visitor]:
“I collect such sculptures as well. And it’s very rare to see that Dimitry Chiparus is sold in some galleries today.”

[Irina Malyshak, Visitor]:
“Look how she embraces them to herself. She does not just look on them or stroke. She, like mother of the children, cuddle them and she seems to want them to fondle.”

At the center of the salon was the exhibition called “Ukrainian Wooden Sculpture at the Turn of the Century”. Eight sculptors are united by one new style, which as been dubbed the ethno-avant-garde.

[Alexander Briginets, Head of the Kiev City Council for Cultural Affairs]:
“It is very difficult to cause positive emotions and negative ones – very simply. In this case, people did the maximum to create positive emotions simply and affordably.”

In addition there are works of world-famous Gregor Kruk, forty Ukrainian contemporary artists and special projects of the leading Ukrainian art galleries.

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