Are you the next British Art Star?

March 5, 2009 at 5:24 pm | Posted in Art, Art World, BBC, Charles Saatchi, Contemporary Art, London Art, London Art Scene, Reality TV Shows, Saatchi's Best of British, Upcoming Exhibitions | Leave a comment
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Saatchi's search for Britain's Next Art Star continues...

Saatchi's search for Britain's Next Art Star continues...

My previous post “Saatchi’s Got the X Factor!” explained how the art guru Charles Saatchi will launch a new reality TV show on BBC2 illustrating his search for the Britain’s next art star.  Saatchi’s Best of British will give six unknown talents the chance to display their creativity on the small screen and win a place in Saatchi’s upcoming exhibition ” Newspeak: British Art Now” that will take place next autumn in Russia.

The auditions have already started and everyone is invited to submit their art work by print, post or online in The webpage includes a series of recommendations, a list of terms& conditions and a series of frequently ask questions (FAQ click here).

If you are over 18, a UK resident and you think you have a special talent in any artistic discipline from painting to sculpture or designing, submit your artwork before the final deadline Sunday 29th March.

Download application form here.


Credit Crunch Art?

March 4, 2009 at 9:52 pm | Posted in Art, Art Auctions, Art Collecting, Art Market, Art Sales, Art World, Collecting Art, Contemporary Art | Leave a comment
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It's not only Dali's clocks that are melting!

It's not only Dali's clocks that are melting!

Just when you thought the art market was the last safe haven as the rest of the world’s economy melts down…It turns out it isn’t considering how the art bubble has officially burst according to experts.

Profits have gone down in a market that seemed unstoppable only a year ago. Auction houses around the world are increasingly concerned about art sales following their poor winter performances where whole lots remained unsold. Even artist are now forced to lower their prices as no nouveu riche is willing to pay a vast amount of money for an art piece…Good old times where Chelsea’s Roman Abramovich bought a Francis Bacon for £86.2 m.

The Art Capital Group has predicted a downfall in prices “by a total of 20 to 40 percent”and its finance chief executive, Ian Peck, during an interview with The Independent’s Art supplement explained how “the concept of a recession in the art market is no longer an abstract but real condition”.

During the past decade, contemporary art has witnessed a tremendous rise in prices and benefited from a growing popularity amongst socialites all over the world. A favourable situation leading to extreme speculation, outrageous prices and a type of  art that is considered by some a fraud as the art dealer, David Nahmad, explained  during a press conference.

He said: “There is a real art market, with real artists, and then there is the stupid art market which uses publicity to make some artists become very expensive. That doesn’t mean they are good. A diamond skull at $100 is an offence. That’s ridiculous!”

It seems that the economic downturn may even have positive results when it comes to contemporary art. At the end of the day, it should be  all be about the value not the prices!

London Contemporary Art Galleries

March 1, 2009 at 5:10 pm | Posted in Art, Art World, Contemporary Art, Design Museum, Kinetica London, London Art, London Art Scene, London Exhibitions, London Galleries, The Barbican Art Centre and The Curve, Upcoming Exhibitions, Whitechapel Gallery | 3 Comments
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The Barbican Art Centre and its celebrated Curve.

The Barbican Art Centre and its celebrated Curve.

It is no secret that London’s artistic Big 3- formed by the Saatchi Gallery, the Institute of Contemporary Arts and the Tate Modern– rule the capital’s art scene with their much hyped exhibitions and impressive financial resources. But London also features a great variety of less known museums offering an interesting collection of contemporary design.

 Design Museum:

London's Design Museum

London's Design Museum

 It’s been described as the world’s leading  museum devoted to contemporary design in every form from furniture to industrial design.The Design Museum , currently showing Hussein Chalayan latest work,is the first museum exclusively covering 20th design including graphics, fashion and architectural sketches.  It’s motto is to celebrate, inform and entertain. Not bad, is it?

Design Museum, 28 Shad Thames. London SE1 2YD

Phone Contact, 0870 833 9955

 The  Gallery and The Curve at the Barbican Art Centre:

The Curve Gallery at the Barbican Art Centre

The Curve at the Barbican Art Centre

The Barbican Centre, Europe’s largest cultural complex, offers a fantastic range of contemporary art material going from fine art, architecture, fashion design and photography. The Centre is divided in two section The Gallery and The Curve acting as two complete different galleries. In this gloomy credit crunched times, 2 galleries for the price of 1 is definitely a plus! 

The Gallery  focuses on fine art, architecture, fashion design and its memorable photography collection previously exhibiting Robert Capa’s This is War! . The second gallery, The Curve, offers a place where  upcoming contemporary arts can exhibit their work.  Furthermore, the Barbican Art Centre counts with a concert hall, a cinema, two theatres and a public library.

A perfect cultural option!

The Barbican, Silk Street, London EC2Y 8DS.

Phone Contact, 020 7638 4141


Energy as you've never seen it!

Energy as you've never seen it!

The UK’s first museum dedicated to kinetic, electronic and new media art located in London. Kinetica displays some eye-popping, jaw-ddropping, top-notch technology in an attempt to shock the viewer and exhibit the power of energy in all its forms. Kinetica never fails to surprise with a quirky show of lights, colours, movement and sound effects!

Phone Contact, 020 7392 9674

61 Bushfield Street, 3rd Floor, Old Spitalfields Market, London E1 6AA.

 The Whitechapel Art Gallery :

The expanding Whitechapel Art Gallery in East London.

The expanding Whitechapel Art Gallery in East London.

 This is must for art discussions, poetry reading, music and film events and…it keeps getting better! The Whitechapel Art Galllery is currently undertaking an impressive expasion plan as part of a massive £13 million programme that will be ready for Spring 2009 and includes the opening of three brand new galleries.

80-82 Whitechapel High Street, London E1 7QX

Phone Contact, 020 7522 7878





The Russian Revolution hits the Tate!

February 23, 2009 at 10:56 am | Posted in Aleksandre Rodchenko, Art, Art World, Constructivism, Contemporary Art, Liubov Popova, London Art, London Art Scene, London Exhibitions, London Galleries, Tate Modern, Upcoming Exhibitions | 1 Comment
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Defining Constructivism

Defining Constructivism


The work of the Russian masters of Constructivism, Aleksandr Rodchenko and Liubov Popova, is currently exhibited at the Tate Modern gallery in London. The Rodchenko and Popova: Defining Constructivism exhibited surprisingly puts together a collection of more than 350 pieces including paintings, propaganda posters and the famous Constructivist architectural sketches made up of interlinked geometrical shapes.

The story of both artists, who dominated the Russian cultural scene for decades, illustrates the birth of the new Russia that emerged after the Communist Revolution in the year 1917. Both Rodchenko and Popova embraced the Communist motto of destroying the old, hierarchical and bourgeois order in their art work by defying classical patterns.

Rodchenko was radical and abstract in his creations; a trademark that is reflected in his monochromatic paintings Pure Red Colour, Pure Yellow Colour and Blue Blue Colour. The three later combined to form a unique canvas.

Popova, vibrant and experimental, abandoned the restrictions imposed by classical patterns and played with different styles going from cubism, to futurism and,at her most productive stage, constructivism. She was a prolific artist who could create paintings and posters but also clothes for the Russian workers cooperatives.


*Opening Times: Daily 10.00-18.00 [ Fri& Sat extended opening hours, 10.00-22.00]

* Tickets: £9.80 adults, £8.80 over 60, £7,80 students.

*Nearest Tube Station: Southwark

For more information:

Saatchi’s Got the X Factor!

February 20, 2009 at 5:22 pm | Posted in Art, Art World, BBC, Charles Saatchi, Contemporary Art, Reality TV Shows, Saatchi's Best of British, Upcoming Exhibitions | 2 Comments
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Art genius Charles Saatchi plans to launch X Factor-like TV show

Art genius Charles Saatchi plans to launch X Factor-like TV show.


Art guru Charles Saatchi will team BBC2 to launch a new reality TV show illustrating the pursuit of Britain’s next art star. Saatchi’s Best of British will give six unknown talents the opportunity to display their creativity onscreen and a privileged artistic insight at Saatchi’s boot-camp.

By the end of the series, Saatchi himself will select the winner whose work, as part of the final prize, will be granted a space in Saatchi’s upcoming exhibition “Newspeak:British Art Now” that is to take place in St Petersburg next autumn.

Well, does all this British next star of no-matter-what that is bound to become the nation’s sweetheart and is then rapidly forgotten after 15 short minutes of fame, ring a bell?

I bet it certainly does considering how the British television has witnessed in the past years an avalanche of talent-seeking competitions that repeat the same generic formula of locking a bunch of contestants in house and wait for them to dispute or fall in love.

From the X Factor, to Britain’s Got Talent or Strictly Come Dancing, money and ratings seem to prevail over real talent.

 So, what is it that makes Best of British so outstanding? Will Saatchi become a new type of pop mogul of the likes of Simon Cowell? At the end of the day and just like Crowell, isn’t he trying to find a product that works and sells well?

Yes, Saatchi’s show aims to make money. Yes, Saatchi’s show pursuits top TV ratings. Yes, Saatchi’s looking for an artist who sells well in his future exhibitions.

 But Saatchi’s Best of British has an educational purpose too as it democratises the usually elitist  contemporary art making it available to the mass audience that usually follows reality TV shows.

This proyect takes a closer look at the secrets of contemporary art as renowned,usually camera-shy artists are set to share their genius with the viewers.

Television aims to entertain and educate, Saatchi’s Best of British makes it possible.

London at the top of the Contemporary Art Scene

February 20, 2009 at 3:51 pm | Posted in Art, Art Market, Art World, Christie´s London, Collecting Art, Contemporary Art, Contemporary Art Auctions, Frieze Art Fair, London Art, London Exhibitions, Sotheby´s London | Leave a comment
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London as the ruling capital of the arts.

London as the ruling capital of the arts.


Despite the gloomy credit crunch mood and Christie’s disappointing sales results last week, London consolidates itself as the capital of contemporary art.

London’s contemporary art fair, offering an eye-popping mix of quality and innovation, had already seduced more than 30,000 visitors attending the second edition of the Frieze Art Fair  last OctoberA series of positive results that only seemed to demonstrate what art collectors and critics had already predicted: London is developing an ever-growing appetite for contemporary art.

An appetite for art that defies the current financial squeeze as shown in Sotheby’s London evening sale of contemporary art earlier this month where a total of 27 pieces were auctioned.  The firm achieved £17, 879, 250 in profits and a fantastic sell-through rate of 92%. Lucio Fontana’s Concetto Spaziale fell into the hands of an anonymous European collector for £4,409,250.

Philips de Pury & Co. sales totaled £5,820,750 and Martin Kippenberg Portrait of Paul Schreber being the firm’s top lot, sold for £432,000. Various artists peaked at record prices while others sold well above their predicted estimates.

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