Friday, October 29, 2010

Hole - Miss World

I used to be a huge Hole fan and today I wanted to watch this beautiful video I had forgotten about... I think it's strong and amazing. The girlie touch is fantastic. I love it and I think Courtney is very charismatic...

My interview with AnOther Magazine online

I am really happy today because the interview I gave to AnOther Magazine has now been published... and without being too egocentric here it is:

And of course you will remember this fantastic cover with Tilda Swinton...

Ad Hoc by Jean Marie-Massaud for Viccarbe

Friday, October 22, 2010

L.12.12 by Lacoste

I've always been a huge fan of Lacoste and I've talked about it several times on Art is Alive. The renaissance of the brand is one of the most interesting case studies in the history of marketing. This new birth mainly comes from the innovative push they did in their ad campaigns (on the beach, some guy once said to his friend about me: "this guy looks like the guy in the Lacoste ad" which I thought was really flattering). 

But let's go back to history. René Lacoste founded La Chemise Lacoste in 1933 with André Gillier, the owner and President of the largest French knitwear manufacturing firm at the time. They began to produce the revolutionary tennis shirt Lacoste had designed and worn on the tennis courts with the crocodile logo embroidered on the chest. Although the company claims this as the first example of a brand name appearing on the outside of an article of clothing, the "Jantzen girl" logo appeared  on the outside of Jantzen Knitting Mills' swimsuits as early as 1921. In addition to tennis shirts, Lacoste produced shirts for golf and sailing. In 1951, the company began to expand as it branched from "tennis white" and introduced color shirts. And the rest is history...

The new website of the brand is amazing! It  allows the user, through an interactive adventure video, to create his/her very own story. The story follows a man who travels across the world in search of his girlfriend. The user and his/her clicks are in sole charge of their fate – depending on what fit the user chooses he should wear, his travels take twists and turns. Throughout the adventure, the brand presents the different L.12.12 polo shirt cuts for Men. Italian, Rugby, Fitted, Retro, Original… Each cut has a world of its own... And for each click a different path. A very creative, innovative video which focuses on the interactivity of internet users... I personnally really like the ultraslim cut which I think is really classy. Wear it with a slim white pants and you'll look fab. One of the videos the brand made which, from a stylistic point of view is fantastic is this one:

On top of that, the Romeo&Juliet scene takes place in London which reminds me of the play I had scene at the Shakespeare's theatre Globe!! Have a look at it!

Visit the Lacoste website too and check the below video to get a better idea!

More info on:  

Monday, October 18, 2010

My portrait by David M. Buisán

 I was so happy when I opened my emails and discovered the portrait the artist David M.  Buisán made of me. I think it's brilliant! Many thanks David!

More info on:

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Vanessa is beautiful the Spanish version of Harper's Bazaar.

Gauguin at Tate Modern, in London until 16 January 2010

Gauguin, the archetype of the artist, the traveller, the hypersensitive... is one of the world's most famous and best-loved artists from the early 20th century...
The exhibition presented at Tate Modern in London, explores the role of the myths around the man – Gauguin as storyteller, painting himself as a Christ-like figure or even a demon in his own paintings, religious and mythical symbols in his work, and the manipulation of his own artistic identity. 

It features many of his iconic paintings, including those showing daily village life from the artist's colony of Pont-Aven in Brittany, nude bathers and haystacks in the Breton landscape, and decorative works such as the carved wooden door panels around Gauguin's hut in the Marquesas Islands in French Polynesia.

Gauguin sought to escape European civilisation in the South Seas. He was also escaping himself. I have a profound respect for his work.

More information on:

Fornasetti's beauties

Karla Black to represent Scotland at the next Venice Biennale

Karla Black: Scotland + Venice 2011 at the 54th International Art Exhibition of the Venice Biennale
Scotland + Venice has announced that  Karla Black has been chosen  to represent Scotland at the 54th International Art Exhibition at the Venice Biennale. The exhibition will be curated by The Fruitmarket Gallery and will, as in 2009, be presented at Palazzo Pisani (S. Marina),
Venice, from 4 June - 27 November 2011.

Karla Black makes sculpture which she has described as "actual physical explorations into thinking, feeling, communicating and relating; parts of an ongoing search for understanding, through a material experience that has been prioritised over language". She works most frequently with loose materials - plaster, chalk dust, pigment, soil, sawdust - and with
materials familiar from life outside art - medicines, make-up, household  cleaners, packaging and toiletries - though she often combines these with more structural elements such as glass, wood and cardboard. While not exactly site-specific, her work is made with its physical and conceptual context in mind.

This will be the fifth presentation from Scotland + Venice, a partnership  between Creative Scotland, British Council Scotland and the National Galleries of Scotland. It builds on the critical success of previous projects which have featured artists including Turner Prize winner Simon Starling and Turner Prize nominees Cathy Wilkes, Jim Lambie and Lucy Skaer,
and last year presented the first solo exhibition for Scotland at the  Venice Biennale with the work of Martin Boyce.

More information on:

Murakami in Versailles

Saturday, October 9, 2010

The spirit of McQueen will live

Sarah Burton, new Creative Director at Alexander McQueen took on the greatest challenge in presenting the new collection since the designer's death last February. Congratulations, it's a success! And once again the collection is beautiful!

Goldfrapp and me...

Copyright Paul Leclercq

I don't generally do that. I don't generally put anything about concerts I attend, or music I like (except David Bowie of course). But in the case of Goldfrapp I think that the music, visual identity and personnality of the band (especially Alison) is so strong that I wanted to publish pictures of the concert I attended in Barcelona, one of the best I've been to. 

It has also gives me the opportunity to pusblish some of the band's covers which I think are fantastic. I am particularly in love with the pictures of the "Seventh Tree" period. Enjoy!

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Cindy Sherman loves Balenciaga

Borrowed from the private collection of François-Henri Pinault, the Balenciaga's store featured six Cindy Sherman self-portraits of the artist wearing the 2007 label's collection. This was one of the last New York Fashion Night's Out. Here is one of the shots.
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Portugal Arte 2010 favours a humanist vision

Even if Portugal Arte took place this summer. I have decided to post something. 

Lisbon – “This show is an independent movie made to be a blockbuster” said Stefan Simchowitz, a cultural entrepreneur as he likes to be described and the artistic director of the country’s first art Biennale at the inauguration in Lisbon on 16 July. Portugal Arte, subtitled “A Survey of Contemporary Art” has been on the minds of Simchowitz and Miguel Carvalho, the Biennale’s president and a food industry businessman, for at least three years. With a limited two million euro budget mainly provided by Portuguese electricity operator EDP, they have finally managed to get the show off the ground this summer.

The four-member organisation has gathered a remarkable 720 artworks by 364 artists from around 10 different nationalities, mainly American. “Our role with this event is to present museum-quality contemporary art to an audience that does not consistently travel the art circuit and to create a stage for the public to engage with new contemporary cultural dialogues; to democratize it so to speak” said Simchowitz. “It is up to the audience to define their experience or reaction to my choices and up to the artists to create their world within their own individual framework.”

With 600 indoor and 120 outdoor pieces the ambitious Biennale reaches out to the public giving them a chance to see artworks that would normally belong in private collections or galleries. “Everyone is a VIP. This also differentiates Portugal Arte from any other biannual event” said Simchowitz at the Biennale’s opening with guests including Palais de Tokyo’s director Marc-Olivier Wahler and Fred Hoffman, curatorial consultant for the Museum of Contemporary Art of Los Angeles and the Jewish Museum of New York, and famous for the 2005 acclaimed Jean-Michel Basquiat retrospective organised by the Brooklyn Museum.


Multiplicity and diversity are at the heart of this countrywide event. While Biennales traditionally take over a single city, Portugal Arte spreads across four: Lisbon, Grândola, Portimão and Vila Real de Santo António. It features the vision of not only one curator but a group of curators and artists working in a collaborative process and exploring a variety of themes. 

The Pavilion of Portugal, designed by Pritzker Prize winner Álvaro Siza Vieira and located in Lisbon’s Parque das Nações, offers the largest exhibition space. Left empty since its construction for the Universal Exhibition of 1998 and especially revamped for the Biennale, it looks as if it was designed to welcome contemporary art. While the first room under the theme “Gradation” curated by the American artist Garth Weiser explores new abstraction with a selection of New York-based painters including Alex Kwartler, upstairs, a large airport-style billboard by João Louro is the first Portuguese artwork of the exhibition to welcome the visitor. “Curator and artist Johannes Van der Beek was excellent both in balancing nationalities across the show and selecting Portuguese artists” said Simchowitz.

“California Dreamin” is the next section and was curated by Fred Hoffman and Paul Young, L.A-based curator and a highly respected journalist. It showcases an astounding selection of media. Video is highly represented with “The Comic That Frenches Your Mind” by psychedelic Frank Zappa’s videast Bruce Bickford or Bruce Nauman’s 1969 “Pulling Mouth”. More recent, the video by Julika Rudelius has a look at childhood and rebellion, where Chanel-dressed little girls put on make-up until they go berserk and reduce their salon to dust.

Later, “Pink Terror” by Mark Barzman, a Guy Bourdin-inspired video shown in a high-ceiling dark room features violent characters smashing watermelons, shooting guns or firing bangers. The tone is often corrosive and sombre. “I have drawn my conclusions in the past about how contemporary art functions within the system as opposed to contemporary art as a generic term. This exhibition is a response to that.” adds Simchowitz. Jonathan Monk’s deflated bunny, a direct criticism of Jeff Koons’polished, dollar-driven pop art, arguably encapsulates best the latter comment.

But Portugal Arte does not limit itself to challenging the art establishment. Above all it surveys humanity and freedom of speech in a country whose eventful history is marked by oppression and revolution. The choice of Grândola as one of the hosting cities certainly serves as a symbol. It was the cradle of the revolution of 1974, where the movement which led to the overthrow of Salazar’s dictatorship was triggered by young officers. Here, “Serendipity”, an exhibition organised by Cuban curators Juan Delgado Calzadilla, Nelson Herrera Ysla and Elvia Rosa Castro, explores through paintings and videos the creativity stemming from the Caribbean island’s varying domination. In particular, “Todas iban a ser reinas” (“They were all going to be queens”), a poignant video by Gustavo Pérez, features disillusioned Russian women who emigrated to Cuba in the 1980s in the hope they would find the Eldorado. John Miller’s “Refusal to accept limits”, already shown last year at the Kunsthalle of Zurich, expresses a similar desire to push the boundaries. Its gold-painted archaeological ruins mixed with dumped refuse openly criticise the distraction consumer society is driving us into. The installation is a key part of “Personal freedom”, the self-explanatory titled exhibition curated by Van der Beek and shown in the Pavilion of Portugal.

 With seventy per cent of exhibited artworks from the United States, the event is still a far cry from the multicultural platform it aims to be. Tight funding cannot have helped, as the Biennale’s short one-month duration and timid public attendance illustrate. Still, Simchowitz and Carvalho plan for the next edition of their striving survey of contemporary art to focus around Portugal’s cultural connections with Brazil. This might prove a risky direction given the confusing definition of the event for the public, as well as its young age. If anything, Portugal Arte’s impressive public installations have raised some interest among the population. “Nothing lasts forever”, a specially commissioned public temple by New York-based collective of artist Faile, displayed in central Lisbon and the most expensive production of the Biennale, was vandalized on the night of the opening. This could be the ideal start to Portugal Arte’s blockbuster script.

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Manchester International Festival: The life and death of Marina AbramoviĆ


Very exciting news: the Manchester International Festival and Teatro Real Madrid will present the world premiere of a startling new piece for the stage: The Life and Death of Marina Abramović, a biography of the grandmother of performance art reimagined by visionary director Robert Wilson.
The show will feature scenes from Abramović’s life and career, from her Serbian childhood to her work as a performance artist. Featuring original and traditional music, including songs written and performed by the incomparable Antony (Antony and the Johnsons), one of my heroes, this ground-breaking show will bring together the worlds of theatre, art and music to thrilling effect. Can't wait...
The Manchester International Festival 2011 will take place from 30 June - 17 July 2011.
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