Damien Hirst on Francis Bacon

“I think Bacon is one of the greatest painters of all time. He’s up there with Goya, Soutine and Van Gogh: dirty painters who wrestle with the dark stuff. He’s complicated. It’s not essentially about formal skill or technique or dexterity. It’s about belief. I believe! And the struggle, the sense that you somehow grunt … read more… “Damien Hirst on Francis Bacon”

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Poe art in London

In anticipation of the bicentenary of Edgar Allan Poe’s birth (1809), White Cube’s exhibition “You Dig the Tunnel, I’ll Hide the Soil” explores the enduring legacy and cult status of the American writer. Wherever curator Harland Miller noticed a connection to an artist’s existing work, life or practice, he approached them to read the stories … read more… “Poe art in London”

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Links: Musicians who paint

For readers like me who are drawn to dopey famous-people-who-paint stories, The Observer’s Casper Llewellyn Smith points out five painter/rockers today.Marilyn Manson The controversial goth rocker paints disturbing watercolours. His first show, The Golden Age of Grotesque, was held in Los Angeles in 2002 and was likened by one critic to the works of a … read more… “Links: Musicians who paint”

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Doig retrospective opens in London

Using photographic images from newspapers or snapshots as a starting point, Peter Doig recasts everyday imagery to make imaginary landscapes and figure scenes. All are imbued with a strong sense of atmosphere – his figures seem out of time, and his landscapes possessed of a strange, haunting presence. (See images of his work at Werner … read more… “Doig retrospective opens in London”

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Michael Craig-Martin: U is for Cynic

“Michael Craig-Martin: A is for Umbrella,” Gagosian Gallery, London. Through Jan. 31. In The Observer, Rachel Cooke writes that Craig-Martin has been turning out work that is repetitive, mundane and just a tiny bit cynical. “Craig-Martin has never stopped being interested in the meanings we invest in quotidian objects: the hope is that by reducing … read more… “Michael Craig-Martin: U is for Cynic”

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British fantasy illustration at the Dulwich Picture Gallery

“The Age of Enchantment: Beardsley, Dulac and their Contemporaries 1890-1930,” curated by Rodney Engen. Dulwich Picture Gallery, London. Through Feb. 17. This group of artists was intent upon borrowing from the past, especially the fantasies of the rococo, the rich decorative elements of the Orient, the Near East, and fairy worlds of the Victorians. Artists … read more… “British fantasy illustration at the Dulwich Picture Gallery”

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Portraiture in Pop

“Pop Art Portraits,” curated by Paul Moorhouse. National Portrait Gallery, London. Through Jan. 20. PAP examines the role and significance of portraiture within Pop Art. Marilyn Monroe is a featured player. Artists include Andy Warhol, Robert Rauschenberg, Jasper Johns, Roy Lichtenstein, Peter Blake, Richard Hamilton, David Hockney and Patrick Caulfield. In The Observer, Tim Adams … read more… “Portraiture in Pop”

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John Everett Millais at the Tate Britain

“Millais,” curated by Alison Smith and Jason Rosenfeld, Tate Britain, London. Through Jan. 13. Schedule: Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam February 15 to May 18 , 2008, and two venues in Japan: Kitakyushu Municipal Museum of Art from June 7 to August 17, 2008, and The Bunkamura Museum of Art, August 30 to October 26, 2008. … read more… “John Everett Millais at the Tate Britain”

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Gary Hume’s cheerleaders, angels, flowers and icons

“Gary Hume: American Tan,” White Cube Mason’s Yard, London. Through Oct. 7. “Gary Hume Prints: Angels, Flowers and Icons,” Hastings Art Museum and Gallery, East Sussex. Through Sept. 23. Dividing his time between studios in London and upstate New York, Hume’s new series of paintings and bronze sculptures at Mason’s Yard is informed by his … read more… “Gary Hume’s cheerleaders, angels, flowers and icons”

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Embedding artists with the troops

In The Observer, Ruaridh Nicoll reports:”Peter Howson never took to the role of official war artist. The Glasgow-based painter had such a grim time during his trips to Bosnia in 1993 that he turned to drink, drugs and, latterly, religion. He created paintings of such brutality that even the hardened curators at the Imperial War … read more… “Embedding artists with the troops”

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