September 2022: News roundup

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Virtual Reality as a Sketchpad? Painter Emma Webster Introduces this Concept

Emma Webster's VR-generated oil on canvas landscape

British-American artist Emma Webster uses virtual reality as the basis of her wondrous oil on canvas landscapes. Her intermedia practice is purely original: a simple sketch is scanned into a VR program, which is then altered and arranged to the artist’s intent, thus turning a physical drawing into an immersive, virtual sculpture. Webster’s use of the medium is in fact meant to explore the notion of VR as a form of sculpture. When her work is done in the program, she prints it and completes the piece by painting it onto a large-scale canvas. Webster’s current solo exhibition featuring these surreal displays, Illuminarium, is currently on view at the gallery Perrotin in Seoul, South Korea.

Artist Awol Erizku Joins Sean Kelly Gallery for Representation

Girl with a Bamboo Earring
Girl with a Bamboo Earring, 2009

Ethiopian-born, Bronx-raised artist Awol Erizku has joined New York gallery Sean Kelly for representation. The photographer’s work is commonly recognized for both its conceptual beauty and celebrity subjects; Beyoncé and poet Amanda Gorman to name a few. His art has been featured throughout numerous publications and museums. A more recent solo show at Gagosian, Memories of a Lost Sphinx, displayed Erizku’s visual perception and analysis of mythological creatures and the cultures they originate from.

 Marine Archaeologists Search the Skerki Banks for Lost Pieces of History

UNESCO has just begun an extensive underwater exploration project intended to unearth sunken shipwrecks, artifacts, and treasures dating back between ancient times to World War II. Marine archaeologists will work aboard the vessel Alfred Merlin in the Skerki Banks from Sicily to Tunisia. The expedition is supported by experts from Algeria, Croatia, Egypt, France, Italy, Morocco, Spain and Tunisia–all who believe the Mediterranean expedition may reveal parts of their shared cultural heritage.

Revolutionary Japanese Photojournalist Tsuneko Sasamoto has Passed Away at the Age of 107

Japanese Photojournalist Tsuneko Sasamoto
In a time and place where the medium was practiced by a male majority, Sasamoto established new grounds in Japan during and after World War II for other women photojournalists. A recent exhibition, The New Woman Behind the Camera, recognized the artist for her boundary-breaking achievements. The show, which took place at both the Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York) and the National Gallery of Art (Washington, D.C.), regarded Sasamoto and other 20th century women who truly shaped photography as a medium for artistic practice.

The New York Historical Society Exhibits Life’s Work of German-American Artist Winold Reiss

Winold Reiss

Langston Hughes
Langston Hughes

The New York Historical Society has opened an exhibition highlighting the works of artist, graphic designer and interior designer, Winold Reiss (1886-1953). The German-born American artist’s work is little-known, but mainly influential for his artistic portrayal of marginalized Asian, Black, and Indigenous Americans. The exhibition’s split into four galleries: the first one centering Reiss’ early paintings, graphic works and furniture made in Germany. The second gallery exhibits what could be his strongest and most compelling work, Reiss’ commissioned depictions of Black writers, philosophers, and editors–such as Alain Locke–who were featured in the 1925 Survey Graphic issue, Harlem: Mecca of the New Negro. Alongside the illustrations for Survey Graphic, Reiss’ drawings of poet Langston Hughes, Japanese-American artist Isamu Noguchi, and a portrait of Turtle, an Indigeous man, are also on display.

The Collaborative Works of Fashion Designer Elsa Schiaparelli and Salvador Dalí On Display in Paris

Lobster Dress (1937) by Elsa Schiaparelli with Salvador Dalí
Culinary couture: Elsa Schiaparelli created the Lobster Dress (1937) with Salvador Dalí

The early to mid-twentieth century designer worked with various artists in her time to explore the surreal possibilities art and fashion figures could create together. The Musée des Arts Décoratifs is currently hosting Shocking! The Surreal World of Elsa Schiaparelli, an exhibition showcasing the designer’s avant-garde creations. One room solely focuses on the collaborations of Schiaparelli and Salvador Dalí. A gem of the show: their 1937 Lobster Dress, designed for Wallis Simpson for her marriage to the Duke of Windsor. The dress’ inspiration came from Dalí’s legendary Lobster Telephone, which was made for British poet Edward James.


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