Kavi Gupta showed A mended heart, a lightened soul and A murmer of a prayer, both 2021 by Guyanese artist Suchitra Mattai who has used every day wearable objects tied to her cultural heritage – cut, woven, and tied vintage saris with mounts of ghungroo bells – to create new landscapes, or maps.
One such site is Zarzis in southeastern Tunisia, where last June Rachid Koraichi, an Algerian artist, decided to build a cemetery, scented by jasmine blossoms and flowering orange trees, that he calls the Jardin d’Afrique, or Garden of Africa. I have not been to see this garden-cemetery, but I was struck by a beautiful description in the newspaper Le Monde, in which a reporter noted the presence of “yellow and green cups, meant to attract rainwater and birds,” set into the white graves. Mr. Koraichi offers this paradisiacal beauty to — in his words — those “damned by the sea,” as compensation for the suffering they endure on the way to their deaths. The Garden is already nearly full to capacity, bearing witness to the scale of this horrific modern hecatomb.
“Olivia Walton, who recently took over as chairperson of the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art from billionaire founder Alice Walton, bought a work by Suchitra Mattai made of saris from the artist’s mother and grandmother, priced around $30,000.”
The Washington, D.C.-based lawyer, philanthropist, and art collector Schwanda Rountree has long recognized the importance of assembling a collection carefully, with intention, and over time. “I first fell in love with art when I was a kid,” Rountree said. “Whenever I got a chance to be surrounded by art, I was in a joyful space.”
As the UAE celebrates its Golden Jubilee, Kazem reflects on how rapidly the art scene has evolved – from once-in-a-year shows in the 1980s to an amalgamation of galleries, institutions, collectives and increasingly global events today.
Seeing how the idol makers brought the Goddess Durga to life, a seven-year-old child from a remote village in Midnapore’s Tamluk area tried his tender hands in clay molding and even managed to sell a few pieces at the local fairs for as little as 10-15 paise in the early 70s. Who would have thought back then that some 48 odd years later that very child’s artwork would sell at a premium all over the country and beyond? That’s Paresh Maity for you.
We recently sat down with Nigerian-born artist and architect Peju Alatise at her new Glasgow studio to find out more about her back-to-back Venice Biennales, how she juxtaposes being a contemporary architect and fine artist, and how Yoruba culture has helped her work stand out in today’s global art world.
The works of Youdhi Maharjan and Monika Bravo are as different as the artists’ personalities yet exemplify these ideas, and the two share strong connections in their approaches to creativity and the meaning of art. Together with the other artists featured in the exhibition The Power of Intention: Reinventing the (Prayer) Wheel, which brings together select examples of traditional and contemporary art, they take the Tibetan prayer wheel on a conceptual spin.
Ekpuk, a Nigerian American artist, painted a mural for a new gallery, Arts of Global Africa, in March 2017. His art is inspired by nsibidi, a sacred means of communication among male secret societies in southeastern Nigeria. Evolving out of the graphic and writing systems of nsibidi, Ekpuk’s art embraces a wider spectrum of meaning to communicate universal themes.
The exhibition juxtaposes precious old manuscripts, grouped together in three display cases, and works by contemporary artists and writers, most of which are from the Cabinet d’Art Graphique at the Centre Pompidou, in which writing is combined with imagery, sometimes even disappearing completely. This journey through inscriptions bears witness to a primordial interweaving of writing and drawing and reveals a universal vital energy. This energy circulates through gestures and lines, fragile crucibles of history, human beliefs and emotions.
From pioneering modernists to wildly innovative contemporary artists, we explore 10 essential textile artists who have been weaving wonders in cloth from India and South Asia.
"It may be best to begin with a memory. A figure of marbled flesh stands atop a plinth, through the folds of a robe one can discern the silhouette of legs, and beneath a draped foot the name “Venus” is emblazoned darkly. This marble statuette of the Roman goddess of love, a popular keepsake, had once stood on the mantelpiece of my childhood home bought by my father on his travels at sea. When I encountered it years later in a studio conversation with Affan Baghpati, the association was immediate."
"Finding the setting of the production for any object is an essential process for many people. That ‘made in’ piece of information printed on the item can start investigations that trace the history, manufacturing processes and, perhaps, even the geographical routing of the object. This research becomes complex when an object is rooted in history, and production of art and design is a composite that is created with articles from different countries in the world."
"Affan Baghpati’s art pieces are always intriguing enough to want me gaze them for a while to comprehend the dark humour that lies within each joint and assemblage. At once they might look bizarre, non-sensible and complex; however, these assembled materials are actually juxtaposing history and contemporary forms and tastes to present something Avant Grade."
"There can be many definitions of creativity, but the simplest one is: to join two different entities and get something new. We are all born through such a procedure and we employ the same formula to fabricate our artworks. Creative individuals often approach it in the most unimaginable manner; establishing a link plainly shocking, utterly odd and normally impossible. However, the excitement lies for makers and viewers in finding a relationship between elements that usually does not exist."
"Happening now at the newly opened DrikPath Bhobon at Panthapath, "Chobi Mela Shunno'' has successfully created a space for artists, thinkers, activists, and visionaries in self-reflective, experimental processes. "Frozen Song'', an exhibition of the festival, depicts the diversity and transformation of Drik and Pathshala."
A contemporary American painter of African American and South Asian descent who lives in Weston, Connecticut, Mequitta Ahuja casts herself as mythic warriors, epic heroes, and power figures descending from traditions across cultures. She synthesizes her multicultural heritage into works that evoke the process of identity construction.
"The difficulty of having a show during this time is that the atrocities in the world today make it difficult to have any kind of celebration while so many around the world find themselves in mourning, but I suppose that revelation is a continuous need. I wish that people could come and enjoy it with me but I understand that that's not possible at the moment."
No sooner had Pakistani artist Adeela Suleman’s exhibit opened at the Karachi Biennale
last week than she had an encounter that artists, writers, journalists and activists say has
become common under the current government: It was shut down.
Her installation, a work that referenced the case of a police officer accused of being
behind more than 400 murders and assassinations, was then wrecked and carted off in
Pakistani authorities are cracking down on free speech, a move critics say reflects a
renewed authoritarianism driven by the military but veiled with the veneer of an elected
Criticism of national-security issues and coverage of the political opposition has all but
disappeared from news broadcasts as a result of pressure and guidance from the media
regulator and security officials, according to local journalists.
We are pleased to announce the participation of Anila Quayyum Agha in the North Carolina Museum of Art's upcoming exhibition You Are Here: Light, Color, and Sound Experiences. Anila will be exhibiting an iteration of her seminal work Intersections alongside internationally renowned artists, Bill Viola, James Turrell, Janet Cardiff, Olafur Eliasson, and many more. The exhibition will be on view from April 7th through July 22nd, 2018.
Aicon Gallery congratulates Adeela Suleman and Abdullah M. I. Syed on their participation in the exhibition I Don't Want to be There When It Happens, at the Perth Institute of Contemporary Arts (PICA). In response to the 70th anniversary of the Partition of Colonial India (14 August 1947), this exhibition features artists from both Pakistan and India whose evocative practices convey the profound existential unease of our age, either directly or indirectly. They unravel the present time, dealing with the legacy of history, as well as foretelling the future.
Aicon Gallery is proud to congratulate Abullah M. I. Syed on winning Australia's 2017 Carstairs Prize. The Carstairs Prize offers $3,000 assistance to a mid-career Australian artist to present a socially engaged art project that embraces participatory and collaborative experiences. The aim of the funding is to bring participants into active dialogue with the artist in order to involve audiences beyond the art community.
We are delighted to announce the participation of Abdullah M. I. Syed in Asia Contemporary Art Week's 2017 Field Meeting Take 5: Thinking Projects. An annual signature program of ACAW, Field Meeting is a two-day exclusive forum for arts professionals dedicated to newly conceived performances, lecture-performances, and lively discussions. Syed will be staging a new experiential performance work titled Flesh and Blood.
Aicon Gallery is delighted to congratulate Abdullah M. I. Syed on being nominated as a finalist for the 2017 Woollahra Small Sculpture Prize. An exhibition featuring finalists' work will be held from October 14 through November 5, 2017. 'Moneyscape III' uses hand cut and assembled money to recall his childhood memories of experiencing the world through images on banknotes.
Aicon Gallery is delighted to announce the acquisition of two seminal video works by Adeela Suleman by Pinakothek der Moderne, Munich. The acquisition will be accompanied by a discussion with the artist at the museum on Thursday, July 20th at 6:30pm in the Ernst von Siemens-Auditorium. The acquired work Don't Despair, Even Over the Fact that You Don't Despair was featured in Suleman's exhibition Not Everyone's Heaven held at Aicon Gallery in June, 2017.
Aicon Gallery is delighted to congratulate Adeela Suleman on her participation in The Artist / Knight, a group exhibition at Gaasbeek Castle, Brussels. The Artist/Knight is an exhibition with and about artists imbued with the spirit of chivalry and who bring the knight to life in countless incarnations, ranging from gentle irony to unbounded passion. The exhibition runs from July 11th through November 5th and features artists such Marina Abramovic, Tracey Emin, Damien Hirst, Barbara Kruger, Jonathan Meese, and Yoko Ono, among many others.
We are delighted to announce the participation of Anila Quayyum Agha in the Asia Society's upcoming exhibition Lucid Dreams and Distant Visions: South Asian Art in the Diaspora. Anila will be exhibiting her work Crossing Boundaries alongside an absolutely phenomenal group of diaspora artists including Aicon friends Jaishri Abichandani, Rina Banerjee, Khalil Chishtee, Ruby Chishti, Naeem Mohaiemen, Kanishka Raja, Jaret Vadera, and many more!
Aicon Gallery is delighted to announce that Anila Quayyum Agha has been named the recipient of Cincinnati Art Museum’s 2017 Schiele Prize. This prize honors the legacy of Marjorie Schiele, a Cincinnati artist whose generous bequest of the Hanke-Schiele Fund makes this award possible. Agha’s All the Flowers are for Me (Red) is the first purchase with the museum’s new Alice Bimel Endowment for Asian Art.
We are thrilled to announce the exhibition All the Flowers Are for Me by Anila Quayyum Agha at the Cincinnati Art Museum. The exhibition will feature Agha's iconic floating installation All the Flowers Are for Me (Red) along with a selection of works on paper. The exhibition will be on view from June 17th through October 15th, 2017.
Aicon Gallery is proud to congratulate artist and long-time friend Abir Karmakar on being awarded the first Asia Arts Future Award present in India by the Asia Society. “This is Asia’s moment,” says Boon Hui Tan, Vice President of Global Arts and Cultural Programs at Asia Society and Director of Asia Society Museum in New York. “Asia Society’s Asian Arts Awards India affirms that places of extraordinary artistic creativity are occurring all over the Asia region. South Asia is one of those regions where the encounter between millennium deep civilizations and the global contemporary is nurturing exciting new forms of artistic practice. As a global initiative, this event in India builds on the original awards platform in Hong Kong to give a more diverse picture of Asian art in the contemporary moment.”
Aicon Gallery is proud to share the news that Abdullah M. I. Syed will be presenting Flying Buck Exchange, a performance over three days, as part of the inaugural Asia-Pacific Triennial of Performing Arts (Asia TOPA), taking place in Melbourne, Australia from February 13 through March 6, 2017. Syed’s tongue-in-cheek turn of phrase, Bucking, will see him consuming, distributing and exchanging currency, in this case, in the form of the fabled US dollar bills.
We are thrilled to announce the participation of Rasheed Araeen in the 57th Edition of the Venice Biennale, which runs from May 13 through November 26, 2017. Additionally, we are pleased to announce his participation in Documenta 14 in Athens, Greece from April 8 through July 16, 2017, and Kassel, Germany from June 10 to September 17. The projects will lead up to the opening of his major Retrospective at the Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven, the Netherlands, which will run from December 2, 2017 to April 8, 2018.
We are delighted to announce the New York premier of the first installment of BBC Four's documentary series Treasures of the Indus - Pakistan Unveiled, hosted by Sona Dutta, on Friday, October 21, 2016 at 6pm. The screening is held in conjunction with the first major New York exhibition by Anila Quayyum Agha, Walking with My Mother's Shadow.
Join Pakistani-American artist Anila Quayyum Agha and Holly Shen, BAM’s Curator of Visual Arts, Staurday, October 22nd at 4pm, for a conversation coinciding with Agha’s solo exhibition at Aicon Gallery, Walking with My Mother’s Shadow. Agha will discuss her monumental hanging sculpture All the Flowers are for Me, on view in the BAM Fisher lobby, adjacent to the Wendy’s Subway Reading Room. Originally installed as part of BAM’s 2016 Winter/Spring exhibition Arch of My Eye’s Orbit, curated by Hrag Vartanian, Agha’s installation has been extended after overwhelmingly positive response from BAM audiences.
We are thrilled to announce the participation of Adeela Suleman in the 2016 edition of the Singapore Biennale, An Atlas of Mirrors, which runs from October 27, 2016 through February 26, 2017. Suleman's recent work has centered around hand-beaten steel reliefs, rendered in the hammered metalworking tradition of Islamic art, depicting beheaded figures engaged in violent, but also absurd, scenes of armed conflict. Her latest solo exhibition with Aicon Gallery New York, Towards the End, took place in 2014.
We are delighted to announce that a special exhibition showcasing the full retrospective of the works of Rasheed Araeen will be held at the Van Abbe Museum in Eindhoven, Netherlands from December 2, 2017 through April 8, 2018. The exhibition will showcase 60 years of Araeen's works, including significant institutional and private loans, selections that form the artist’s archives, and works realized specifically for the exhibition
We are delighted to announce the participation of Abir Karmakar in the 2016 edition of the prestigious Kochi-Muziris Biennale, which runs from December 12, 2016 through March 29, 2017. Studying the traditions of oil painting and its varying forms of spatial construction, Karmakar's photorealistic canvas and trompe-l’œil-esque paintings dramatise the space between perception and interpretation. His latest solo exhibition with Aicon Gallery New York, Uncanny Space, took place in 2015.
Aicon Gallery is delighted to offer our warmest congratulations to artist and friend Saad Qureshi on being commissioned by NOVA to create a major new site-specific public installation for the district of Victoria in Central London. The project launches on November 22, 2016 and "looks at the portability of landscapes, and the human mind as a vehicle that allows places to travel, to be carried in the memory from one location to another,” Qureshi explains.
We are delighted to announce the participation of Salman Toor in the 2016 edition of the prestigious Kochi-Muziris Biennale, which runs from December 12, 2016 through March 29, 2017. Toor's work, installed in the Aspinwall section of the Biennale, will consist of a large installation of works on canvas both inspired by and presented alongside his multi-media collaboration with exiled Pakistani poet Hasan Mujtaba, which was born of the artist's 2015 exhibition Resident Alien at Aicon Gallery, New York.
We are excited to announce the inclusion of Rasheed Araeen in the upcoming exhibition Postwar: Art Between the Pacific and the Atlantic, 1945 - 1965, on view at Haus de Kunst, Munich, Germany from October 14, 2016 through March 26, 2017. Alongside Araeen's works My First Sculpture (1959) and Burning Bicycle Tires (1959-61), the exhibition features the work of Joseph Beuys, Robert Rauschenberg and many others. "The exhibition examines the vibrant and turbulent postwar period as a global phenomenon for the first time in recent exhibition history. In eight dramatic chapters, the exhibition guides visitors through the first 20 years following the end of World War II..."
We are pleased to annouce that Rasheed Araeen will be speaking at the Guggenheim New York on Friday Sept. 23, 2016 at 2pm as part of the museum's seires of lectures (De)Coupling as Discourse on the Global South, taking place concurrent with the exhibition But a Storm is Blowing from Paradise, on view until October 5, 2016. The discussion, organized by Sara Raza, will explore "the autonomous rise of contemporary art in the Global South, this two-day symposium traces aesthetic and contextual change to identify an elastic discourse around global visual culture."
Aicon Gallery New York is proud to announce Geometry and Symmetry | New Works by Rasheed Araeen, a major new exhibition by the London-based, Pakistani-born artist. A pioneering artist and voice for alternative and Non-Western interpretations of Minimalist and Conceptual art in the 1960s and 70s, Araeen’s work in this exhibition spans his oeuvre from his beginnings in Pakistan and London to the present day.
We are delighted to announce that Rasheed Araeen's work Lovers (1968) is now on permanent view in the exhibition Between Object and Architecture at the Tate Modern in London. The exhibition, on display in Switch House, Level 2, West, explores the ongoing dialog between Contemporary Art and Architecture, and between materials and space. Araeen's Lovers is joined in the West Room by work from artists such as Carl Andre, Felix Gonzalez-Torres, Yayoi Kusama, and many others. Lovers was acquired by the Tate in 2011, joining the works 3Y + 3B (1969), Rang Baranga (1969), Bismullah (1988), and Zero to Infinity (1968 - 2007) in their permanent collection.
Aicon Gallery is proud to announce the most recent set of insitutional acquistions by artist Rasheed Araeen. Since Araeen's last solo exhibition, Minimalism Then and Now, held at Aicon Gallery in May, 2015, we are delighted to have placed his work with the following collections. The Guggenheim, Abu Dhabi - Chakras (1969-70), The Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, NY - Pehli Si Muhabut (1971/2015), The Kiran Nadar Museum of Art, New Delhi - Rang Baranga II (1969/2014), The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York - Chaar Yaar II (1968), and The Art Institute of Chicago, IL - Punj Neelay (1970).
Aicon gallery is proud to congratulate artist Abdullah M. I. Syed on his exhibition Substitute: The Untold Narrative of a Mother and Son, running at the Fairfield City Museum & Gallery in Sydney, Australia from June 4 - August 6, 2016. The exhibition is the culmination of a six month long artist residency Syed undertook at the Fairfield City Museum & Gallery from 2015-2016, and "investigates ideas of memory, intimacy, migration and gender role attitudes in a complex narrative that weaves together the personal, the familial and the historical through photographic digital prints, sculptural works, drawings, video and installation, as well as an outreach project engaging members of the Sydney community and beyond."
We are pleased to announce that Rasheed Araeen's work will be on view in the exhibition Defining Sculpture at the Albright-Knox Art Gallery in Buffalo, New York. The exhibition, which centers around the question of "What sculpture is and is not" runs from June 18 - October 9, 2016, and is comprised of work from the museum's permanent collection, featuring artists such as Robert Rauschenberg, Claes Oldenburg, Tara Donovan, and many others. Araeen's work was acquired by the museum for their permanent collection in Spring of 2015.
Aicon Gallery congratulates artists Nadia Kaabi-Linke and Mohammed Kazem on their participation in the Guggenheim New York's first major survey of art from North Africa and the Middle East, But a Storm is Blowing from Paradise, running from April 29 - October 5, 2016. We are honored to be showing both artists, concurrent with the Guggenheim, in our exhibition Between Structure and Matter: Other Minimal Futures, on view from May 26 - July 2, 2016. The Guggenheim exhibition "through painting, drawing, sculpture, installation and video...presents a spectrum of artistic voices and critical concerns from a rapidly evolving region."
We are excited to announce the participation of Anila Quayyum Agha in The Arch of My Eye's Orbit, a major exhibition curated by Hrag Vartanian, installed throughout the Brooklyn Academy of Music in New York. Alongside Agha, the ehxbition features the work of Kamrooz Aram, Kameelah Janan Rasheed, and Slavs and Tatars. "Reflecting on the cosmopolitan nature of cities and their interplay of light, language, symbols, and networks. The Arch of My Eye’s Orbit (a title derived from a verse by the 14th-century Persian poet Hāfez) thematically points to a connection between architecture and the act of seeing. The exhibition uses the frame of the city and its architecture to explore and uncover the visual and physical space between ancient and modern, past and present."
Aicon Gallery congratulates artist Rachid Koraichi on his participation in the 2016 Marrakech Biennale, Not New Now, running from Feburary 24 - August 5, 2016. During the Biennale's run, we are honored to be hosting the first major showing of Koraichi's work in New York, in collaboration with October Gallery, London, with the exhibition Rachid Koraichi | Love Side by Side with the Soul, on view from March 3 - April 16, 2016.
We are proud to announce the first exhibition of Anila Quayyum Agha's iconic work Intersections in a major East Coast meseum. Agha's work will be on view at the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, MA, the only U.S. museum with a permanent display of Contemporary South Asian Art, from February 6 - October 16, 2016. "Intersections: Anila Quayyum Agha is an immersive single room installation that bathes the visitor in a geometric array of light and shadow. Inspired by traditional Islamic architectural motifs, Pakistani-American artist Anila Quayyum Agha's laser-cut steel lantern conjures the design of the Alhambra Palace in Granada, Spain, a historic site of cross-cultural intersection where a thousand years ago Islamic and Western cultures thrived in coexistence.