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Article

Andrew Cross

(b Isleworth, Middx, 1947; d June 5, 2014).

English sculptor. A graduate of St Martin’s School of Art and a contemporary there of Richard Long and Hamish Fulton, he has often been considered in relation to British land art, but his work stands apart from that movement’s direct involvement with the landscape or with the romance of nature. It is more closely allied to the rigorous abstraction of Minimalist painters such as Alan Charlton (b 1948). Ackling’s work remained remarkably consistent from the time that he first started making art in the 1960s, particularly in its reliance on a single exacting process by which fine burn-marks are made onto small pieces of wood or cardboard by focusing the sun’s rays through a magnifying glass. This work, which is always executed outdoors, demands an intensity of concentration that borders on the ritualistic. His very early drawings included shapes reminiscent of figures or clouds, but from the early 1970s his drawings were made using only straight horizontal lines etched into the surface from left to right. Ackling always draws on found objects marked by previous use, such as cardboard from the back of a notepad or wood from a chair leg, either gathered from around the world or discovered washed ashore near his coastal home on the Norfolk coast. Since his art continued to be defined by his chosen method of mark-making, there was little overt development or stylistic evolution. Instead, it was the particular surface characteristics of chosen objects—their shape, size and surface texture—that dictated in each case the placement and banding of the scorched lines, allowing the work its own inner logic....

Article

Michael Ryan

A treasure hoard (now in Dublin, N. Mus.) discovered in 1868 within the rath (circular earthwork) called Reerasta Rath, near Ardagh in Co. Limerick, Ireland. The objects were buried slightly less than 1 m deep and partly protected by an upright stone. The hoard consists of a splendid two-handled chalice, a smaller bronze chalice and four gilt silver brooches. The probable dates of manufacture range from the 8th century ad to perhaps the early 10th.

The silver chalice (h. 178 mm; max diam. 195 mm) has a broad, almost hemispherical bowl, a copper-alloy stem cast in three parts, and a large, sub-conical foot with a broad, flat foot-ring. A band of filigree ornaments and gem-set enamel studs girdles the bowl below the ring. Below this are two applied medallions with filigree and enamels. The strap handles spring from applied escutcheons decorated with enamel, filigree and granulation. The stem carries superb cast gilt ...

Article

Arman  

Alfred Pacquement

[Fernandez, Armand]

(b Nice, Nov 17, 1928; d New York, Oct 22, 2005).

American sculptor and collector of French birth. Arman lived in Nice until 1949, studying there at the Ecole des Arts Décoratifs from 1946 and in 1947 striking up a friendship with the artist Yves Klein, with whom he was later closely associated in the Nouveau Réalisme movement. In 1949 he moved to Paris, where he studied at the Ecole du Louvre and where in an exhibition in 1954 he discovered the work of Kurt Schwitters, which led him to reject the lyrical abstraction of the period. In 1955 Arman began producing Stamps, using ink-pads in a determined critique of Art informel and Abstract Expressionism to suggest a depersonalized and mechanical version of all-over paintings. In his next series, the Gait of Objects, which he initiated in 1958, he took further his rejection of the subjectivity of the personal touch by throwing inked objects against the canvas.

Arman’s willingness to embrace chance was indicated by his decision in ...

Article

Banksy  

Elizabeth K. Mix

(b Bristol, ?1974).

English graffiti and interventionist artist. Banksy is best known for stencilled graffiti that sometimes mimics government posts. His graffiti, both freehand and stencil, started appearing on trains and walls around Bristol in 1992–4. He apparently left Bristol for London late in 1999. The name ‘Banksy’ became formally associated with his work with the publication of his first book, Banging Your Head Against a Brick Wall (2001).

Banksy’s text-based graffiti has included the phrase, ‘caution, concealed trap doors in operation’, on London’s Millennium Bridge; ‘designated riot area’ in Trafalgar Square, and ‘this is not a not a photo opportunity’ at various tourist sites including Big Ben, the Eiffel Tower, and the Sydney Opera House. Many were fooled by his official-looking stencilled declaration that walls on Marylebone and Bayswater Roads in Westminster were ‘a designated graffiti area’. Other works contained unusual appropriations of public property—vandalized street signs, traffic cones, telephone booths, vehicles, and even farm animals. Banksy has termed his appropriation and manipulation of public advertisements ‘Brandalism’. A subtle use of found objects involves the painting of frames or dotted lines and scissors around the edges of objects, making the outlined objects appear to be either artworks or coupons ready to be clipped. In addition, Banksy has mimicked British pound notes (‘Banksy notes’ featuring Princess Diana) and oil paintings by William Bouguereau and Claude Monet, among other artists, by inserting incongruous objects (bombs, iPods, shopping trolleys) into copies of well-known paintings in a series of ‘Vandalized Oil Paintings’....

Article

Francis Summers

(b Glasgow, 1967).

Scottish installation artist and sculptor. Boyce studied at Glasgow School of Art, in the Department of Environmental Art, from 1986 to 1990, and, after a break of five years returned to Glasgow School of Art to complete his MA (1995 to 1997). He also visited the California Institute for the Arts, Valencia, in 1996. An early work Around Every Corner (1996; see 2000 exh. cat., pp. 18–19), made whilst still at college, is a wall painting that uses a grid and the words of its title. Combining the utopian tropes of the Modernist project with a sense of menace, Boyce made more wall drawings employing words and grids, such as Over Your Shoulder and Disappear Here (both 1999; see 2000 exh. cat., pp. 40–41 and p. 33 respectively). Other works directly reference Modernism by incorporating International Style design products. For example, Boyce used the classic Eames storage unit in ...

Article

Eva Meyer-Hermann

(b Sonthofen, Allgäu, Aug 1, 1944).

German painter, sculptor and environmental artist. He studied in Kassel between 1964 and 1967, first at the Werkkunstschule and then at the Hochschule für Bildende Künste with Arnold Bode. In 1969 he moved to Cologne. His first journey to Morocco in 1970 was decisive for the course of his artistic development, and thereafter Marrakesh was his second home. At Documenta 5 in Kassel (1972) Buthe was one of the artists whose work was grouped under the heading of ‘Individuelle Mythologien’, exhibiting the environment Homage to the Sun (see von Weise, p. 21).

Buthe’s works cannot be characterized by one style, but rather they emerge from an attitude that makes no differentiation between art and life. The artist builds spaces (for himself), using a large variety of materials, which may be transitory, ‘poor’, or precious (e.g. gold), as well as trivia: everyday objects as well as keepsakes become cult objects, fetishes, linked to folk myths and fairy tales. Murals or installations were built up on a collage principle, and earlier works could be reworked with a new status. Sumptuous colours and imagery such as stars, suns, palm-trees and stylized flowers reveal the influence of Africa, for example ...

Article

Stephen S. Prokopoff

Artistic partnership. Christo [Christo Javacheff] (b Gabrovo, Bulgaria, 13 June 1935, d New York, 18 Nov 2009), an American artist of Bulgarian birth, studied at the Fine Arts Academy in Sofia (1953–6), after which he spent six months in Prague. There he encountered Russian Constructivism, which impressed him with its concern for monumental visionary structures. He escaped first to Vienna, studying briefly in 1957 at the Akademie der Bildenden Künste, and in 1958 to Paris. Like his contemporaries, Christo rebelled against abstraction, seeing it as too theoretical and proposing in its place a manifestly physical art composed of real things. Christo began by wrapping everyday objects, including tin cans and bottles, stacks of magazines, furniture (e.g. Wrapped Chair, 1961; New York, Jeanne-Claude Christo priv. col., see 1990–91 exh. cat., p. 54), automobiles, or various objects such as Wrapped Luggage Rack (1962; New York, Jeanne-Claude Christo priv. col., see ...

Article

(b Budapest, 1931).

American conceptual and environmental artist of Hungarian birth. She was educated in Sweden and the USA. In much of her work she presented analytical propositions in visual form, seeking to re-evaluate existing knowledge, and her work came to be seen as a process of investigation, incorporating both philosophy and science but also using elements of myth. In her book Map Projections she relinquished accepted forms of knowledge of the planet earth and sought new possibilities, presenting them in the form of drawings. Thus, for example, ‘longitude and latitude lines were unravelled, points of intersection cut, continents allowed to drift, gravity tampered with [and] earth mass altered.’ The element of game-playing in this was important, as was the belief in the possibility of changing our understanding of the world. Denes felt it was important to ‘accept the possibility that there may be no language to describe ultimate reality, beyond the language of visions’ (e.g. ...

Article

Annika Öhrner

(b Stockholm, Aug 30, 1888; d Stockholm, April 28, 1973).

Swedish painter, designer and sculptor. Derkert studied at the Kungliga Akademien för de Fria Konsterna (Royal Academy of Fine Arts), Stockholm. She went to Paris in 1913 where she visited the Académie Colarossi, Académie de la Grande Chaumière and Académie Russe. In 1914 she travelled around Algiers with some female artist friends. The same year she met the Finnish artist Valle Rosenberg (1891–1919); their son Carlo was born in Italy in 1915. From 1915 to 1916, influenced by urban life and the avant-garde scene in Paris, Derkert developed a fine Cubist idiom in landscape paintings and portraits (see fig.). During this period Derkert, together with Rosenberg, also took an interest in fashion design (see sig.). Derkert returned to Stockholm in 1916 and the following year she staged a modern dance piece at the Theatre Intiman, in which she also danced and designed the costumes (together with Rosenberg who sent drawings from Italy). Her visionary designs were discovered by the fashion house Birgittaskolen (directed by Elisabeth Glanzberg) in Stockholm and she received a contract for two annual collections for women’s fashion. She worked with them until the house went bankrupt in ...

Article

Renato Barilli

(b Rosario, Santa Fé, Feb 19, 1899; d Comabbio, nr Varese, Sept 7, 1968).

Italian painter, sculptor and theorist of Argentine birth. He moved with his family to Milan in 1905 but followed his father back to Buenos Aires in 1922 and there established his own sculpture studio in 1924. On settling again in Milan he trained from 1928 to 1930 at the Accademia di Brera, where he was taught by the sculptor Adolfo Wildt; Wildt’s devotion to the solemn and monumental plasticity of the Novecento Italiano group epitomized the qualities against which Fontana was to react in his own work. Fontana’s sculpture The Harpooner (gilded plaster, h. 1.73 m, 1934; Milan, Renzo Zavanella priv. col., see 1987 exh. cat., p. 118) is typical of his work of this period, with a dynamic nervousness in the thin shape of the weapon poised to deliver a final blow and in the coarse and formless plinth. Soon afterwards, together with other northern Italian artists such as Fausto Melotti, Fontana abandoned any lingering Novecento elements in favour of a strict and coherent form of abstraction. In ...

Article

John-Paul Stonard

(b Cheshire, July 26, 1956).

English sculptor and photographer. He studied fine art at Bradford School of Art (1974–5) and at Preston Polytechnic (1975–8). Goldsworthy works in the open air with natural materials such as stones, leaves and ice. Like other artists associated with ‘Land Art’, such as Richard Long and Hamish Fulton, he uses photographs as permanent documents of the ephemeral structures left in isolated locations. His sculptures are, as he puts it, ‘there all the time’, their aesthetic and formal qualities revealed by his work in and with the landscape. Changing seasons and weather conditions play a large part, often dictating the possibility of making a work, as well as its final appearance. The changeable British weather gives both transience and urgency to sculptures that can melt, topple over or be blown away. Goldsworthy records his work photographically before such damage occurs. Although most are created outdoors in isolation, he has also produced sculptures for galleries (...

Article

(Mark David)

(b London, Aug 30, 1950).

English sculptor and draughtsman. He studied archaeology, anthropology and art history at Trinity College, Cambridge (1968–71) and Buddhist meditation in India and Sri Lanka (1971–4), experiences that profoundly inform his work. Influenced by the ideals of Indian sculpture as much as by those of modernism, his sculptures use the human form to explore man’s existence in and relation to the world. He is primarily known for the lead figures cast from his own body. Free of individualizing surface detail, with welding lines emphatically exposed, these remain physical casings rather than imitative representations of the universal human form. His belief that the spiritual and physical selves are inseparable is reflected in works such as Land, Sea and Air II (1982). Three figures, crouching, kneeling and standing, were placed on the seashore, embodying the process of Buddhist spiritual awareness. The work also referred to the earthly condition of the body and man’s relationship with his surroundings. These concerns are further reflected in Gormley’s full use of installation space, with sculptures suspended from ceiling and walls. Many works were made specifically for natural environments, most controversially ...

Article

Bojan Ivanov

(b Prilep, March 19, 1925; d Skopje, May 28, 1986).

Macedonian sculptor. He was apprenticed to a local stonecutter in Prilep from c. 1940, and from 1945 he attended the class of Dimo Todorovski (1907–83), founder of modern Macedonian sculpture, at the School of Applied Arts in Skopje. Grabuloski graduated from the Academy of Arts in Belgrade in 1952, having studied under Lojze Dolinar (1893–1970) and Sreten Stojanović (1898–1960). He returned to Skopje and in 1953 founded the Denes group. In the following years he attempted to embody in his work the group’s programme for a synthesis of the arts and architecture. Between 1968 and 1974 he came closest to achieving that aim when he created the huge spherical Monument of Ilinden at Kruševo, central Macedonia, with eight mine-like, radial protrusions arranged on two levels. Comparable in spirit to this monumental project were the ‘ambient sculptures’ that he displayed at his one-man exhibition in the Museum of Contemporary Art in Skopje (...

Article

Sara Champion

Type of landscape art. It is apparently unique to Britain, and the earliest hill-figures probably pre-date the Roman conquest of the 1st century bc. Hill-figures are produced by removing turf to expose the underlying rock or soil. In the majority of cases—most figures are found in southern England—this is chalk, and thus almost all the figures appear white on a green background. One notable exception was the no longer extant Red Horse of Tysoe in Warwickshire, England, where reddish clay was exposed. Two figures at Strichen in Aberdeenshire, Scotland, were filled with quartz and limestone to give a white appearance, and a small horse-figure at Woolbury Camp, Hampshire, England, was made of flint that has been whitewashed in the past. Most hill-figures feature large cut areas, with details left as uncut patches of turf. A number of the earliest figures, however, were drawn as outlines, with the edges and details marked by cutting, leaving the main body of the figure dark; the same technique was used for some 20th-century signs and badges. For some of the earlier examples, records exist of elaborate cleaning and scouring rituals, for which the participants were paid; seven years seems to have been a regular interval for the cleaning of many figures. Some English figures, such as the ...

Article

Vanina Costa and Lin Barton

(b Bristol, June 2, 1945).

English sculptor, photographer and painter. He studied at West of England College of Art in Bristol (1962–5) and from 1966 to 1968 at St Martin’s School of Art, London, where his fellow students included other artists who were redefining the terms of sculpture in England, among them Hamish Fulton, Jan Dibbets, Gilbert and George, and John Hilliard. Within a year of his departure from St Martin’s, Long was closely associated with the emergence of a new art form, Land art, having already produced such works as A Line Made by Walking (1967; London, Tate), a photograph of the trail left in the grass by walking back and forth in a straight line; another work, England (1968; London, Tate), consists of an X shape made by cutting off the heads of flowers in a field, again presented in the form of a photograph.

Long made his international reputation during the 1970s with sculptures made as the result of epic walks, sometimes lasting many days, to remote parts of the world, including desert regions of Africa as well as Australia, Canada, Japan, Switzerland and Norway. Guided by a great respect for nature and by the formal structure of basic shapes, especially circles, he never allowed facile exotic connotations to intrude into his work, although some of his sculptures evoked the mysterious connotations of ancient stone circles and other such monuments. Different modes of presentation, sometimes combined, were used to bring his experience of nature back into the museum or gallery. These included, above all, photographs documenting the sculptures left behind in their original setting, such as ...

Article

Susan Snodgrass

(b Madrid, Spain, 1961).

Chicago-based American sculptor also working in photography, video and installation. He received a BA in art and art history and a BA in Latin American and Spanish literature from Williams College in 1983. In 1989 he earned a MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

Manglano-Ovalle’s hybrid practice emerged with Tele-vecindario: A Street-Level Video Block Party, a public art project created for Culture in Action, a community-based art program in Chicago in 1992–3. Working with Latino youth in Chicago’s West Town community, an area often challenged by substandard housing, drugs and gang violence, the artist facilitated a multimedia portrait of their lives in which these youth constructed their own images and concept of self. Issues of identity, community and migration, as they relate to both cultural and geographic borders, have been explored throughout his prestigious career that includes collaborative modes of working, as well as individual works sited within the museum or gallery. For Manglano-Ovalle, culture encompasses a broad network of systems—artistic, political, environmental, scientific—in constant dialogue, negotiated by both artist and viewer....

Article

(b Esher, Surrey, Nov 14, 1945).

English sculptor, land artist, and draughtsman. He studied at Kingston College of Art (1963), Brighton College (BA, 1964–7), and Chelsea School of Art (MFA, 1969–70). In 1967 he moved to Blaenau Ffestiniog, Gwynned, a slate-quarrying village, motivated by a desire to escape the ‘unnecessarily competitive’ metropolitan art world. As a student Nash became interested in the art and writing of China, particularly the text of the Dao de Jing by Laozi (see China, People’s Republic of §I 5.); other interests include the painting of Abstract Expressionist Arshile Gorky, as well as the theoretical implications of Minimalism, although he found much Minimalist work ‘completely devoid of the human spirit’. Nash’s early works were in part a response to both Minimalism and the sculpture in the New Generation 65 exhibition (1965; London, Whitechapel A.G.), which included work by Philip King and William Tucker. From the late 1960s he developed his holistic approach to art; his first exhibition ...

Article

Anne K. Swartz

[née Berliawsky, Leah]

(b Kiev, Russia [now Ukraine], Sept 23, 1899; d New York, NY, April 17, 1988).

American sculptor. In her lifetime Nevelson was considered one of the leading American sculptors and one of the most successful women artists of the post-war years. She is represented in major museum collections and was given important public commissions. Born in Kiev in 1899, Louise Nevelson immigrated to America at the age of six and grew up in Rockland, ME. Her father had a successful lumber and construction business there. With her marriage to Charles Nevelson in 1920, she moved to New York and eventually began her studies at the Art Students League where she was instructed by Kenneth Hayes Miller and Kimon Nicolaides (1891–1938). In 1931 Nevelson travelled to Germany to meet Hans Hofmann and later studied with him in New York. In 1933 she served as an assistant to Diego Rivera on one of his New York mural projects.

Nevelson’s marriage was brief, but it produced a son and helped her move to New York where she began her career. From ...

Article

OHO  

Miško Šuvaković and Žarko Cvejić

Artists’ group active in Kranj and Ljubljana, Slovenia, between 1966 and 1971. Initiated in Kranj by Marko Pogačnik (b 1944) and I. G. Plamen (Iztok Geister, b 1945), the group also included Aleš Kermauner (1946–66), Franci Zagoričnik (1933–97), Milenko Matanović (b 1947), Andraž Šalamun (b 1947), Tomaž Šalamun (b 1941), and David Nez (b 1949), among others.

The group emerged in the context of European neo-avant-garde concrete and visual poetry. In the Slovenian context, concrete and neo-avant-garde poetry were determined by the doctrine of reism. Reism is an aesthetic and artistic doctrine that replaces the subject with the object in art and culture. The artwork thereby becomes an object that says and shows tautologically that it is an object. Reism emerged as a critique of the humanist world view.

The OHO-Katalog (‘Catalogue’) movement emerged when the OHO group expanded onto ...

Article

Stephan von Wiese

(b Laasphe, Westphalia, April 18, 1928; d Berlin, Jul 17, 2014).

German painter, printmaker and environmental artist. He studied art at the Hochschule für Bildenden Künste in Munich and the Staatliche Kunstakademie in Düsseldorf and then philosophy at Cologne University, graduating in 1957. In the same year he developed the Grid Picture, a type of stencilled painting made from half-tone screens with regularly arranged points in single colours (yellow, silver, white or gold), for example Pure Energy (1958; New York, MOMA). The vibrating pattern and slight shadow in these works, which were first shown in September 1957 at the first evening exhibition in Piene’s studio in Düsseldorf as avant-garde manifestations of the West German art scene, seemed to take the play of light itself as their theme. Their objectivity lay in their lack of any subjective painterly gestures. The connection between art, nature and technology remained the goal of Piene’s work, first of all within the Zero group and then, from ...