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Dec 04 2020

Planning Ahead: Friday News Roundup

by The Editors

Exterior view of Art Gallery of South Australia, Adelaide. Image via Facebook.

Although there is undoubtedly a long way to go with the containment of Covid-19, the United Kingdom’s approval of Pfizer’s vaccine suggests that hope is on the horizon. A number of arts organizations have forged ahead with plans for the rest of the year through to 2021. Here’s a roundup of new hirings, revamped spaces, and projects to watch out for.

Art Gallery of South Australia Reveals 2021 schedule

With international borders still mostly closed, the Adelaide gallery’s director, Rhana Devenport, has decided to train upcoming projects on the AGSA collection and on local Australian artists. The AGSA will kick off the new year with a retrospective of Australian painter Clarice Beckett (1887–1935) titled “The present moment,” featuring 130 of her landscape paintings depicting different times of day. Other highlights include “Dušan and Voitre Marek: Surrealists at sea,” the first major survey of Czech-Australian brothers Dušan and Voitre Marek, known for dreamlike figurative paintings created during their voyage to Adelaide in 1948 and their surrealist films. The Ramsay Art Prize finalists exhibition will open in May, while the Tarnanthi festival for contemporary Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art will return in October.

The 2020 Prince Claus laureates were announced via livestream. Image via Facebook.

2020 Prince Claus Laureates Honored Online

On December 2, via YouTube livestream, the Prince Claus Fund bestowed its 2020 awards to Tongan cultural activist Tunakaimanu Fielakepa; Istanbul-based independent radio journalist Açık Radyo; Ghana-based visual artist Ibrahim Mahama; Colombian fashion designer Diamantina Arcoiris; Buenos Aires architect-duo m7red; and Addis Ababa’s Fendika Cultural Center, founded by choreographer Melaku Belay. The 2020 Next Generation Prince Claus Laureate is emerging filmmaker and multimedia artist Hira Nabi.

View of MMCA Cheongju’s Open Storage. Courtesy MMCA Korea.

Renovations for MMCA Cheongju

The National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art Korea (MMCA) announced plans to renovate its 20,000-square-meter Cheongju branch. Opened in 2018, the Cheongju venue is the institution’s first open-storage facility. The first-floor redesign is underway and will result in a revamped exhibition space led by design studio VAT featuring 185 sculptures and craftworks in MMCA Cheongju’s gallery and Art Garden. The indoor section will be decorated with more graphics to create a lively atmosphere for visitors, while the outdoor garden will host an augmented reality display viewable on visitors’ mobile devices. On the fourth floor, a showcase of 800 drawings acquired since the early 1970s will be reorganized according to three main themes: “Recording and Reproducing,” with figurative, landscape, and still life works; “Drawing Redefined,” spanning the mid-to-late 20th century; and “Expanding Line,” including mixed-media works by the likes of video-art pioneer Nam June Paik (1932–2006) and abstract artist Chun Kook-kwang (1945–1990).

White Cube’s booth at Frieze London 2019. Photo by Linda Nylind. Courtesy Linda Nylind / Frieze.

Frieze Seoul on the books?

Speculations that Frieze is in talks with Korean galleries and institutions to hold a Seoul art fair in 2022 were first reported by Korean newspaper Hankyoreh on September 4. The international fair, which has editions in London, New York, and Los Angeles, is allegedly thinking of running a Seoul event concurrent with the Korean International Art Fair (KIAF). A Frieze spokesperson told Artnews, “We are always looking at potential new opportunities . . . anything is possible, but there’s nothing to report at this stage.”

HENRY KIM, head of Toronto’s Aga Khan Museum, at a talk hosted by Serena Hotels, Islamabad. Image via Twitter.

Aga Khan Museum Director steps down

Toronto’s Aga Khan Museum, dedicated to promoting Islamic art and culture, announced on December 1 that director and CEO Henry Kim has ended his eight-year tenure. Under Kim’s leadership, the museum organized the 2019 exhibition “The Moon: A Voyage Through Time,” celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing, as well as the Maktab Project, an Islamic education platform for the 2018 Lahore Biennale. The museum’s director of collection and public programs Dr. Ulrike a-khamis has been elevated to interim director and CEO. Kim has not disclosed his plans for the future.

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