Art in a virtual reality: the platforms bringing culture home

As the art world continues to adapt to our new virtual reality, these are the digital art platforms are offering the real – yet unreal – deal

Hank Willis Thomas, History is Past, Past is Present, 2019, Lenticular

Hank Willis Thomas, History is Past, Past is Present, 2019. Lenticular. Ben Brown Fine Arts

(Image credit: press)

‘The Pandemic is a Portal’ from Armory Access: Curated imagines the world anew

On 15 April, The Armory Show will launch Armory Access: Curated. Ahead of the fair’s next physical edition at the Javits Center in September, two renowned international curators have been invited to conceive a digital show around a theme of their choosing. The first iteration, ‘The Pandemic is a Portal’, was developed by Daniel S. Palmer, curator of New York’s Public Art Fund. The theme and framework of the exhibition was inspired by author Arundhati Roy’s potent 2020 essay published in The Financial Times which highlighted the threat of coronavirus in India. Spanning installation, painting, drawing, print, photography, and film, works will be interspersed with commentary from Palmer and quotes from Roy’s essay. Featured artists include Hank Willis Thomas (Ben Brown Fine Arts), Ann Veronica Janssens (Alfonso Artiaco), Rana Begum and Marina Tabassum (both Jhaveri Contemporary). ‘The Pandemic is a Portal’ will be live from April 15 - 25, 2021. thearmoryshow.com

Writer: Harriet Lloyd-Smith

Minhwi Lee and Yun Choi, Viral-Lingua

Minhwi Lee and Yun Choi, Viral-Lingua, 2018.

(Image credit: Courtesy of the artist)

Korean artists explore psychological well-being and social solidarity through film

Following the first anniversary of the official pandemic declaration, concerns around psychological well-being, social solidarity, and care systems feel more pertinent than ever. These are the themes explored in ‘A Viewing Room’, a new film programme from The Korean Cultural Centre UK featuring new and recent video works by eight contemporary Korean artists and artist groups. Participating creatives include Jeongyoon Ahn, Minhwi Lee & Yun Choi, and the Rice Brewing Sisters Club, with each artist nominated by a member of the exhibition’s curatorial committee. The experience documents the monumental societal changes of recent times and simultaneously offers a sense of belonging and solidarity, despite geographical constraints. kccuk.org.uk

Writer: Harriet Lloyd-Smit

Camille Henrot, Grosse Fatigue (2013) film still - best virtual art platforms

Camille Henrot, Grosse Fatigue (2013). © ADAGP Camille Henrot. Courtesy of the artist, Silex Films and kamel mennour, Paris/London

(Image credit: © ADAGP Camille Henrot. Courtesy of the artist, Silex Films and kamel mennour, Paris/London)

Munch Museum takes a deep dive into screen culture 

There was a time, not so long ago, when screen time was a rare event. In the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, it has become our lifeblood; in our work, social lives and a great deal in between. For its first online exhibition series, the Munch Museum presents Contemporary Art Digital Shorts (CADS). The first of this three-part virtual art series focuses on ‘Screen culture’ and features work by the likes of Camille Henrot, Sofia Caesar, Stine Janvin, Milad Forouzandeh and Lex Brown. Dissecting the relationship between our physical and virtual realities, digital artworks highlight our increasingly complex relationship with screens and how, during the pandemic, the Internet has become an extension of the home. ‘CADS #1: Screen culture’ is on display until 9 April, 2021. munchmuseet.no

Writer: Harriet Lloyd-Smith

virtual art platforms: Yiannis Pappas, Telephus perfomance art for Marina Abramović's Guest Curator Series

Yiannis Pappas, Telephus

(Image credit: press)

Marina Abramović champions the next wave of performance artists

The doyenne of performance art, Marina Abramović has teamed up with WePresent, the editorial arm of WeTransfer, for its inaugural Guest Curator series. Renowned for her grueling mode of endurance-based art, Abramović throws the digital spotlight on five rising international performance artists: Ana Prvacki, Maurício Ianês, Yiannis Pappas, Terence Koh and Regina Jose Galindo, who are each pushing the limits of mind, body and the medium of performance art itself. In early summer, following Abramović’s guest curatorship, the year-long collaboration continues with a virtual iteration of ‘The Abramović Method’ on WeTransfer. Available 24/7 and ‘reaching 70 million people globally’, it seems the artist is present even in the seemingly routine event of transferring files. wepresent.wetransfer.com

Writer: Harriet Lloyd-Smith

Okocha Obasi for Decentralise at Somerset House - best virtual art platforms

Okocha Obasi for Decentralise

(Image credit: press)

Somerset House explores the cultural history of Black British art

For its inaugural project, Somerset House’s Young Producers collective has teamed up with innovative design studio COMUZI for Decentralise, a new interactive digital resource celebrating the cultural history of Black British art, spanning themes including Afro-Nowism and Afrofuturism. Encouraging virtual engagement with objects inspired by Somerset House’s past exhibitions, users can form their own creations in response which will then be added to the Decentralise archive. The initiative forms part of Somerset House’s recent Anti-Racism Pledge, which ‘commits to conducting, and making available, new research into what is currently understood of Somerset House’s social history’. somersethouse.org.uk

Writer: Harriet Lloyd-Smith

Correspondance by Thomas Brown and Guillaume Ferrand


(Image credit: Image courtesy Thomas Brown / Guillaume Ferrand)

New online platform Correspondance reflects on personal and universal isolation

Inspired by the shifts in our communication during lockdown, regular Wallpaper* photographer Thomas Brown collaborated with illustrator Guillaume Ferrand for a new online platform, Correspondance. They exchange thoughts on notions of time, place and the spirit of collaboration, each reflecting on their personal yet universal experiences of isolation. With an immersive digital platform produced by Justified Studios, atmospheric sounds from Anaïs Khout enhance viewers' journeys through eleven digital spaces. Partnering with The Photographers Gallery, an open call invites individuals to share their own correspondences, from which selections will be curated into a twelfth online room. 

correspondance.world
thephotographersgallery.org.uk

Writer: Sophie Gladstone

Touch the ocean.jpg, from the Instagram of Cao Fei part of NYUAD Art Gallery exhibition not in, of, along, or relating to a line

Touch the ocean.jpg, from the Instagram of Cao Fei

(Image credit: © Cao Fei, 2020)

In NYU Abu Dhabi Art Gallery’s first foray into virtual exhibiting, no two experiences can ever be the same. Titled ‘not in, of, along, or relating to a line’, the show features new and existing work from the likes of Cao Fei, Sophia Al-Maria, Addie Wagenknecht, Eva and Franco Mattes and Lee Blalock. Curated by Heather Dewey-Hagborg and Maya Allison, the platform explores how each artist harnesses technology as a tool for self-expression, and the omnipresence of screen-based art during Covid-19. Some artists delve into how identities and histories are engineered in the virtual world. Others interrogate the power relations of technological tools, from virtual gaming and ‘big data’ consumer portraits to facial recognition software. Developed specifically for mobile devices, viewers can plunge into a digital landscape using their touchscreens to navigate from artwork to artwork - a journey that will be unique for each user. ‘not in, of, along, or relating to a line’ is available to experience until 10 July, 2021.

nyuad-artgallery.org

Writer: Harriet Lloyd-Smith

Sebastian Nevols Untitled Nude hosted by Sid Motion Gallery via the Vortic Collect app


(Image credit: press)

Sebastian Nevols explores representations of the male body in Name no one man

Bringing together over 20 of London's contemporary galleries to host exhibitions in Virtual Reality, The London Collective allows audiences to discover new artists and exhibitions while physical spaces remain closed. Hosted on Vortic Collect, a highlight is Sebastian Nevols’ series of tonal nudes ‘Name no one man’ which reimagines the representation of the male body within art history, opening on 24 March with Sid Motion gallery. Working with a wide range of artist models, Nevols explains that the process was similar to the gesture of drawing as both bodily positions were composed and lighting was carefully constructed. The resulting images are mirrors to ourselves; as viewers we bring our own bodily experience to Nevols’ enigmatic forms. 

sidmotiongallery.co.uk
vortic.art

Writer: Sophie Gladstone

Flashpoints 2013 Ongoing C Philip Montgomery

Flashpoints, 2013-ongoing.

(Image credit: © Philip Montgomery / courtesy of the artist)

Foam Talent 2020 enters the virtual realm 

In previous years the acclaimed Foam Talent’s exhibition has travelled internationally. However, current circumstances have called for a fresh approach and the exhibition has been reworked into a unique digital showcase in which the nineteen selected photographers each convey meaningful messages about our world today. Video, soundscapes, interviews and music accompany the diverse works. Instinctive to scroll through, the platform offers powerful insight into the future of photography as talent from across Europe, Asia, North America, South America and Africa unite. 

talent.foam.org

Writer: Sophie Gladstone

Strange Flowers the Earth Issue, featuring work by William Arcand

William Arcand, Abdou, 2020

(Image credit: press)

The Earth Issue’s ‘Strange Flowers’ features powerful expressions of struggle and hope

Featuring works from their fundraiser, which raised £213,000 for charities connected to the Black Lives Matter movement, The Earth issue presents the online exhibition Strange Flowers. Founder and Head of Photography Elena Cremona explains, ‘The artworks here are like these flowers: they are radical expressions of racial struggle, life and hope. The artists have created them as testimonies to the complex world we inhabit, and we are celebrating them as symbols of the struggle, the fight and the great war for equality among all.’ The show runs in tandem with the US’s Black History month, then continues until 11 April.

theearthissue.com

Writer: Sophie Gladstone

I Love You Moi Non Plus is a participatory digital art project inspired by the British-French relationship


(Image credit: press)

I Love You Moi Non Plus is a participatory digital art project inspired by the British-French relationship

Launched by Somerset House in partnership with Dover Street Market, I Love You Moi Non Plus invites artistic contributions from artists around the world based on the theme of the British-French relationship. As we adjust to the new borders put in place by Brexit, the initiative, which takes its name from Serge Gainsbourg’s 1967 song Je t'aime, moi non plus, seeks to build bridges through creativity and share the love between the two nations. The digital art project has been launched with contributions from international artists and creatives including Ai Weiwei, Brian Eno, Caleb Femi, Anne-Lise Coste, Angelique Kidjo and Stella McCartney. Artworks can be created in any medium, and should be shared on social media using the hashtags #ILoveYouMoiNonPlus,#ILYMNP and #LifeAfterBrexit or directly via the Dover Street Market website.

london.doverstreetmarket.com (opens in new tab)

somersethouse.org.uk (opens in new tab)

World on A Wire Hyundai Motorstudio Beijing

(Image credit: press)

World on a Wire looks to the future of digital technologies in art

Longtime artworld supporter Hyundai has partnered with art organization Rhizome of the New Museum to support innovative digital art endeavours and exhibitions through to 2022. Virtual in both medium and platform, the debut exhibition, World on a Wire, recently debuted through a digital experience (opens in new tab), as well as being presented physically at the Hyundai Motorstudio in Beijing. The mixed-media exhibition showcases the works of 11 global artists who share an interest in emergent born-digital technologies like VR. The work of Pete Jiadong Qiang, for instance, combines physical space with virtual environments experienced through a headset.

Writer: Elly Parsons

Neon cow sign

Sammy Yip, Neon cow sign, Sammy’s Kitchen, circa 1978, neon light, zinc, steel, and paint. M+, Hong Kong. Gift of Sammy’s Kitchen, 2013.

(Image credit: © Sammy’s Kitchen Ltd)

M+ offers diverse digital experiences as its physical museum nears completion

M+ invites viewers to travel virtually through the ever-evolving contemporary art scene of Hong Kong and beyond. Its bilingual digital storytelling platform, ‘M+ Stories’, features a range of blog posts, videos and digital commissions related to the museum, which is scheduled to open in early 2021. This includes an online presentation of the Sigg Collection, featuring 271 contemporary artworks created between 1972 and 2012. A separate digital exhibition, ‘Neonsigns.hk’, is devoted to a disappearing element of the urban landscape: since 2013, M+ has been salvaging neon signs removed by the government over safety concerns. Presented anew, the signs are now accompanied by essays, films and artist commissions. Elsewhere, data-driven creative Shirley Wu fuses her love of art, maths and code to develop a mesmerising interactive web visualisation that celebrates Hong Kong’s female artists, while demonstrating their underrepresentation online.

mplus.orginstagram/mplusmuseum

Writer: Diane Theunissen

Portal 8

Phillip K Smith III, Portal 8, included in ‘SITE: State Savings Bank’.

(Image credit: Image courtesy of the artist and Library Street Collective. Image and rendering by James Haefner)

Detroit’s historic State Savings Bank sets the scene for innovative virtual exhibition 

In Detroit, a platform is taking online exhibiting to a new dimension. Led by Library Street Collective in collaboration with architectural photographer James Haefner, the inaugural iteration for SITE has filled downtown Detroit’s State Savings Bank with intricately rendered, site-specific work by the likes of Daniel Arsham, Phillip K Smith III and Kennedy Yanko. The building, a sprawling 72,000 sq ft Classical Revival structure designed in 1900 by New York architects McKim, Mead & White, was left deserted for more than 20 years until its restoration and reopening in 2018 with a presentation of Doug Aitken’s Mirage Detroit. Further SITE exhibitions will be staged in the city’s architecturally significant buildings including those designed by architects Minoru Yamasaki and Albert Kahn and locations that once housed the automotive industrialists of Detroit’s past. Ten per cent of sales will be donated to Ruth Ellis Center, Detroit, a non-profit organisation building positive futures for LGBTQ+ youth. lscgallery.cominstagram/librarystreetcollective

Writer: Harriet Lloyd-Smith

The Hatchling

Joanna Rajkowska, The Hatchling.

(Image credit: Vassilis Skopelitis)

A new interactive map allows viewers to walk The Line, online 

We’re all becoming accustomed to spending less time outdoors, but one initiative is bringing the experience of a sculpture trail onto our screens. To celebrate its fifth anniversary, The Line – London’s first dedicated public art walk – has launched an intuitive, interactive map by design practice, Burgess and Beech. Along the way, virtual ramblers can make pit stops for insight on the rich heritage and abundant flora and fauna to be found along waterways, home to more than 50 species of bird. Running from the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park to the O2, The Line currently has ten sculptures in situ, including Gary Hume’s Liberty Grip, Anish Kapoor’s ArcelorMittal Orbit (the UK’s tallest sculpture) and Joanna Rajkowska’s The Hatchling. The initiative hosts new interviews (filmed from home) with artists who have worked with The Line over the past five years including Antony Gormley, Joanna Rajkowska and Alex Chinneck. Offering some light at the end of the tunnel, The Line will also announce new collaborations for later this year, with artists including Eva Rothschild and Anne Hardy. 
the-line.orginstagram/thelinelondon

Writer: Harriet Lloyd-Smith 

‘Stacked’ table

‘Stacked’ table, Sabine Marcelis' virtual background for Got Your Back

(Image credit: press)

Got Your Back livens up the working from home environment 

With online business meetings surging in popularity, Dutch creative agency Staat has gathered a group of established and emerging creatives to create virtual backdrops, available to use for free in a wide range of video conference applications such as Zoom and Microsoft Teams. We're particularly fond of the backdrops by 2020 Wallpaper* Designer of the Year Sabine Marcelis, which feature her 'Stacked' table and Candy Cubes. Other headline contributors include landscape designer Piet Oudolf, who selected a picture of his garden in Hummelo, and photographers Iwan Baan and Romain Laprade, who respectively submitted images of the interior Le Corbusier’s Convent Sainte-Marie de la Tourette and a seashell-shaped synagogue in Tel Aviv. Titled ‘Got Your Back’, the project provides design enthusiasts with a new opportunity to share great art and architecture while sprucing up their work routines. Voluntary donations raised through ‘Got Your Back’ go towards the Covid-19 Solidarity Response Fund. gotyourback.space 

Writer: Diane Theunissen

Not Vital's Artist's Palate recipe

Not Vital's Artist's Palate recipe, 'plain in pigna', originally featured in the November 2017 issue of Wallpaper* (W*224). Photography: Felicity McCabe. Interiors: Matthew Morris. Food: Iain Graham. Artwork: Not Vital, Pelvis, 2008. Stainless steel. 386 x 341 x 146 cm. Edition of 3 plus 2 AP (#2/3). Courtesy the artist. Portrait of Not Vital by Beny Steiner.

(Image credit: Filippo Simonetti)

Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac’s cross-platform initiative feeds the mind  

Since social distancing began, Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac has done anything but sit still. With its cross-platform digital initiative, the gallery sheds new light on its roster of artists, revives archival material and recreates physical exhibitions online. Its weekly newsletter, ‘From The Studio’ features virtual studio visits and ‘culinary art’, sourced in part from Wallpaper’s Artist’s Palate series, with featured recipes from the likes of Robert Longo, Tom Sachs and Not Vital. The ‘Artist Eye’ video series – including Antony Gormley and Liza Lou – sees an artist select and discuss an object of inspiration. Over on Instagram live, the gallery’s senior global director, Julia Peyton-Jones hosts ‘Tea with Julia’ each Saturday, a succession of in-depth conversations with prominent art figures. An extension of Harun Farocki and Hito Steyerl’s exhibition ‘Life Captured Still’ will be staged online, highlighting seminal works from their recent London show. As curators, Antje Ehmann and Carles Guerra say, ‘Harun and Hito devised in advance a kind of work with images in which the human presence was already vanishing, and yet the discursive impact would be progressively assumed as part of the work.’ Julia Peyton-Jones will be in conversation with design critic and author Alice Rawsthorn on Instagram live at 11am (BST) on Saturday 2 May. 
ropac.netinstagram/thaddaeusropac

Writer:  Diane Theunissen

Artist Rashid Johnson’s #ColoringFromHome takeover

Artist Rashid Johnson's #ColoringFromHome takeover on the RxART Instagram 

(Image credit: press)

RxArt’s #ColoringFromHome Instagram initiative harnesses the restorative qualities of art 

Art has the power to heal, as American nonprofit organisation RxArt has demonstrated over the years. In addition to commissioning contemporary artists to bring beauty and joy to paediatric hospitals, they also publish an artist-designed colouring book every two years, both as a gift to young patients and a fundraising initiative. The colouring project has now gained a live dimension, called #ColoringFromHome, which sees artists from their roster host colouring sessions on Instagram Live, every weekday at 4PM EST. The colouring templates are free to download on RxArt’s website – among them are Alex Israel’s self portrait maze, the Haas Brothers’ playful creatures and Claudia Comte’s bunny ears. Some participating artists have even invited their young children to join in on the action; a recent takeover by Rashid Johnson and his son, Julius was a particularly heartwarming moment. Colouring has often been touted for its therapeutic properties; with #ColoringFromHome, this rings particularly true.
rxart.net; instagram/rxart

Writer: TF Chan 

‘Endless Story’ by Mihkel Ilus and Paul Kuimet

Exhibition view of  ‘Endless Story’ by Mihkel Ilus and Paul Kuimet.

(Image credit: Paul Kuimet, Tallinn Art Hall 2020)

Tallinn Art Hall cuts through the noise to prioritise accessibility 

Driven by an aim to make art more accessible to their audience, the Estonian gallery has devised a simple yet innovative digital offering. You won’t find VR experiences 360-views here; instead, cinematography and interactive web applications immerse viewers in a ‘distinctly spatial and ambient experience’. Available for free, the platform offers current and past exhibitions – with live curator tours – and there are plans to host virtual exhibitions from the gallery’s forthcoming programme. Tallinn Art Hall’s most recent show, ‘Endless Story’ – comprising new work by Mihkel Ilus and Paul Kuimet – explores the ‘invisible systems that drive our world’ through a dialogue between painting and photography. New life has also been given to a past exhibition, ‘Disarming Language: disability, communication, rupture’ which draws together activists, writers and artists to imagine disability beyond a stigmatised ‘condition’. A digital guide supporting sign language has now been integrated into the virtual exhibition. kunstihoone.ee

Writer: Diane Theunissen

Installation view of Yinka Shonibare

Installation view of Yinka Shonibare, Adam and Eve. © 2013, Yinka Shonibare MBE.

(Image credit: Wianelle Briers)

Zeitz MOCAA combines immersive viewing technology with space to reflect

To keep their audience engaged in times of isolation, nascent South African institution Zeitz MOCAA has launched virtual 360-view tours of its current and past exhibitions. These include the recent Afro-futures show ‘Still Here Tomorrow To High Five You Yesterday’ in which artists, performers, writers and architects confront tensions between ‘utopia’ and ‘progress’, with work from Yinka Shonibare and Michael MacGarry. The institution has also virtually restaged its acclaimed 2018 exhibition, ‘Five Bhobh: Painting At The End Of An Era’ and has updated its YouTube content, which includes a series of impactful talks relating to artist William Kentridge’s recent exhibition. Elsewhere, the platform hosts a range of self-guided audio tours providing insights from artists, curators, and architects involved in the creation of Zeitz MOCAA’s collection and distinctive building, designed by Thomas Heatherwick. zeitzmocaa.museum

Writer: Diane Theunissen

Harold Ancart, Untitled, 2020

Harold Ancart, Untitled, 2020, © Harold Ancart / SABAM, Brussels. Courtesy the artist and David Zwirner.

(Image credit: JSP Art Photography)

David Zwirner thinks audiovisually

Following the temporary closure of their galleries, David Zwirner has sought out inventive, multiplatform means of exhibiting and sharing content. Access to the David Zwirner Books series has been expanded and podcast episodes will be published more frequently – conversations with artists Diana Thater, Rachel Rose and Luc Tuymans are on the horizon. The gallery has also built upon its series of online-only exhibitions and special collaborations. The programme kicks off on 10 April with a new series by Belgian contemporary artist, Harold Ancart. Titled, ‘Pools’, the sculptures draw on the vernacular architectural structures of swimming pools. The work falls somewhere in between concrete sculpture and relief, with a semi-abstracted, block-coloured pop reminiscent of a David Hockney or Peter Halley. As Ancart himself says, ‘Their compositions are fairly simple. The “basin” can have any size and take any shape, so can the ‘staircases,’ and the color, well, the color can be anything too.’ ‘Wanderlust: Travel Drawings’, by Canadian artist, Marcel Dzama will launch virtually on 23 April. davidzwirner.cominstagram/davidzwirner

Writer: Harriet Lloyd-Smith

multifaceted online platform


(Image credit: Photo courtesy of Sarah Sze studio and Gagosian)

Gagosian throws the spotlight on its multifaceted online platform 

In the wake of museums and art galleries closing their physical spaces, for the time being, the lure of using the digital realm as an exhibition platform has never been stronger. Yet for art dealer Larry Gagosian, there has been hesitation in taking the plunge. ‘We discussed presenting our scheduled exhibitions online, but that’s not how they were conceived,’ he expressed in a statement, adding, ‘We needed a solution that didn’t require our artists to make that compromise.’ To that end, Gagosian has launched ‘Artist Spotlight’, which invites a different artist to take over the gallery’s editorial and social media channels and transform them into a new multifaceted online platform for presenting a single artwork each week. Supported by a rich backdrop of editorial features, videos, essays and interviews, along with the artist’s playlists, book and film recommendations, that artwork will then be available for purchase for the next 48 hours only exclusively on the gallery’s website. Kicking off with the New York-based artist Sarah Sze, whose show opening at Gagosian Paris coincided with the city’s shutdown, the series (which will occur weekly each Wednesday) will also include Urs Fischer, Jenny Saville, Theaster Gates and Mary Weatherford. gagosian.cominstagram/gagosian

Writer: Pei-Ru Keh

An artist sits inside a studio filled with drawings and sketches

Louise Bourgeois in her home on West 20th Street, New York, 2000.

(Image credit: Photography: © Jean-François Jaussaud © The Easton Foundation / Licensed by VAGA at Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York)

‘Dispatches’ from Hauser & Wirth 

Hauser & Wirth (opens in new tab)’s all-digital initiative provides plentiful visual nourishment with a series of events and exhibitions that can be accessed entirely remotely. In 'From A Distance', Hauser & Wirth's roster of artists will share filmed messages and allow viewers a rare glimpse behind the curtain into their studios. The platform launched with Avery Singer’s artist studio challenge, inviting budding creatives to share their own works in progress. Guillermo Kuitca will offer a tour of his home studio and drawings and new light is cast on late artists' bodies of work. The gallery’s online exhibitions series kicks off with ‘Louise Bourgeois: Works on Paper’, a series compiled by Jerry Gorovoy, the artist’s former studio assistant. Solo shows in the pipeline will include Phyllida Barlow, George Condo and Matthew Day Jackson. hauserwirth.cominstagram/hauserwirth

Writer: Harriet Lloyd-Smith

A yellow sculpture has a gooey red interior

Oldenburg/van Bruggen, Paradise Pies (II and VI) -- VI, 5/6 Red, 2009.

(Image credit: © 2020 Claes Oldenburg and Coosje van Bruggen)

Pace Gallery's curated digital programme examines timely themes

After announcing temporary gallery closures, Pace has snapped back with vigour, opening up its online viewing tool for public consumption and unveiling a programme of digital exhibitions carefully compiled by Pace dealers and curators. The mix of group and solo shows delve into important contemporary themes including domesticity, the promise of a future world and human relationships, all supported by additional texts, audio and archival material. As Pace’s senior director and lead curator, Andria Hickey says, 'This is a time when people are seeking solace, and we believe art has the power to bring comfort and help us parse this difficult situation together.' Fresh exhibitions will be released at regular intervals and will be open online for a period of two weeks. On the horizon is a group exhibition, 'Material Matters', reflecting on the singular bond between artist and material – poignant in a time when the notion of tactility is at the forefront of the international conversation. Artworks include Lynda Benglis' recent ceramic creations and Oldenburg and Van Bruggen’s seemingly tangible cast studies. pacegallery.cominstagram/pacegallery

Writer: Harriet Lloyd-Smith

Lamya Gargash Sahwa 2019 Bw Untitled

Lamya Gargash, Sahwa, BW Untitled, 2019.

(Image credit: Courtesy of The Third Line)

For Alserkal Art Week, the show must go on-line

The physical iteration of Alserkal Art Week, due to take place from 23 to 28 March in Dubai’s Alserkal Avenue cultural quarter, was cancelled. But through the collective effort of the district's community of galleries, the resistant initiative didn't call it quits and instead transformed the event into a large-scale, immersive art spectacular. 17 galleries have restaged their offerings through interactive 360-view technology to keep a global audience captivated from the safety of their homes, alongside opportunities to meet the minds behind the art through custom video content and interviews. Notable highlights are dizzying geometric Op Art pieces by Mohamed Melehi and Shaikha Al Mazrou at Lawrie Shabibi and The Third Line’s surreal and captivating presentation of photographic work by Lamya Gargash. alserkal.onlineinstagram/alserkalavenue

Writer: Harriet Lloyd-Smith

White tube-like models sit on a low rise table inside a gallery

Installation view: Andreas Eriksson, 'Mapping Memories, Tracing Time', solo exhibition, Stephen Friedman Gallery, London (2020). Copyright Andreas Eriksson. Courtesy Stephen Friedman Gallery, London.

(Image credit: Mark Blower)

Stephen Friedman Gallery's digital walkthrough

At Stephen Friedman Gallery, two key exhibitions have found new life online. For Andreas Eriksson’s ‘Mapping Memories, Tracing Time', an immersive film narrates the artistic process of translating his paintings into new, large-scale tapestries, for which the artist collaborated with a team of Stockholm weavers. These works, described as ‘existential landscapes’, offer a unique window into the artist’s rural surroundings in Medelplana, Sweden. Another new series, ‘When snows fall’, an installation of 95 ceramic candleholders, is inspired by celebrated Swedish designer Pia Törnell. The gallery will also launch an online viewing room for ‘Latin America from 1950 to 2020: a personal journey’, a group exhibition championing the glorious diversity of Latin American art which will correspond with Stephen Friedman Gallery’s 25th anniversary. stephenfriedman.cominstagram/stephenfriedmangallery

Writer: Phoebe Gardener

Instagram takeover of @perrotin

Claire Tabouret’s Instagram takeover of @perrotin on 26 March 

(Image credit: press)

Perrotin gets #Unlocked

With its expansive library of virtual exhibition walkthroughs, documentary footage and podcasts, Perrotin has always been ahead of the curve on digital offerings. The gallery juggernaut is now ramping up its online presence with the #Unlocked series. A weekly Instagram takeover began last week with Claire Tabouret, who took us into her LA studio to preview a new body of paintings about siblings (which had to compete for attention with her five-month-old pitbull mix, George); up next will be Jean-Philippe Delhomme on 4 April. There’s also a succinct Q&A series on IGTV with the likes of Bharti Kher and Daniel Arsham, but the most compelling initiative is no doubt their Pocket Playlist series, available on Spotify. Launched appropriately with Xavier Veilhan, whose French pavilion for the 2017 Venice Biennale took the form of a functional recording studio, it has an eclectic, laid-back mix ranging from German electronic music to Jamaican dub reggae, so your ears can travel the world while you’re quarantined at home. perrotin.cominstagram/galerieperrotin

Writer: TF Chan

Acrylic on canvas

Liu Ye, Catherine Deneuve, 2012. Acrylic on canvas, 60 x 45 cm. Private Collection, Beijing. courtesy of Fondazione Prada Milano 

(Image credit: Roberto Marossi)

Fondazione Prada looks inwards and outwards for its virtual presence 

On the back of show postponements, the Milan institution has amped up its virtual presence, offering a visual lab of creativity to keep the inspiration flowing. Across platforms including Vimeo, Youtube, Facebook and the website, Fondazione Prada is forming virtual exhibition experiences, opening up the archives, presenting video projects and more. ‘Inner Views’ takes a visual dive into three recently-opened exhibitions: ‘Storytelling’, by Chinese painter Liu Ye, ‘K’, a multi-platform exhibition inspired by three uncompleted Franz Kafka novels and ‘The Porcelain Room’, exploring the historical significance of Chinese-exported porcelain. Here, the institution thinks beyond the gallery experience, offering new interviews and videos encouraging intimate engagement with the exhibitions and the creative minds behind them. In ‘Outer Views’, the foundation transcends physical and virtual walls, documenting the curatorial contribution of Collezione Prada, including recent loans for major retrospectives of Donald Judd, Bruce Nauman and Richard Artschwager. fondazioneprada.org; instagram/fondazioneprada

Writer: Harriet Lloyd-Smith 

Harriet Lloyd-Smith is the Arts Editor of Wallpaper*, responsible for the art pages across digital and print, including profiles, exhibition reviews, and contemporary art collaborations. She started at Wallpaper* in 2017 and has written for leading contemporary art publications, auction houses and arts charities, and lectured on review writing and art journalism. When she’s not writing about art, she’s making her own.