From a fantasy sugar land to a socialist state
Source:The Art Newspaper Author:Victoria Stapley-Brown Date: 2017-05-19 Size:
Skip dessert for Mark Ryden's sugary solo show, The Art of Whipped Cream……

Mark Ryden, Dessert Counter (2016). (Photo courtesy the artist © Mark Ryden/Paul Kasmin Gallery)

Skip dessert for Mark Ryden's sugary solo show, The Art of Whipped Cream, at Paul Kasmin Gallery. The exhibition includes the fantastical studies Ryden made for costume and set designs for a new production of Whipped Cream, a whimsical 1924 ballet by Richard Strauss. The ballet follows the sugar-fuelled fantasies of a young boy under medical care after eating too many sweets. Ryden's show includes plans for counters of sugary treats and portraits of characters like Princess Praline. But there are also more frightening figures, like a needle-wielding nurse in laced-up ballet shoes. If you've still got a sweet tooth afterwards, head to the Metropolitan Opera to see the American Ballet Theater perform Whipped Cream (23 May-1 July), for which Ryden has made his studies into actual designs.

A little-known story is revealed in With the Eyes of Others: Hungarian Artists of the Sixties and Seventies at the Elizabeth Dee Gallery (until 12 August). The 30 artists represented “were all playing a game of hide-and-seek with authorities” under a one-party socialist state that forbade dissent, according to a press statement. The 100 works included demonstrate how these artists cleverly dodged censorship with encrypted messages intelligible only to their peers and abstract works whose style gave a nod to the West. Highlights include Ilona Keserü Ilona’s Wall-Hanging with Tombstone Forms (Tapestry) (1969), a gorgeous, curvy abstract work in saturated tones of orange, pink, purple and red.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art has put on An Artist of Her Time: Y. G. Srimati and the Indian Style, the first career survey of this late Mysore, India-born artist and performer. Srimati’s early watercolours from the 1940s-50s show how she pulled from Modern Indian art of the 1930s and also drew on traditional painting. The exhibition also eloquently explains how the artist’s use of traditional conventions and subjects is integrated with her Nationalist feelings around the time of of Indian independence (reflected in archival material, like a photograph of the artist with Mahatma Gandhi at an Independence Rally). Meanwhile, musical instruments and recordings demonstrate her classical training in Indian singing, dancing and music.

[Editor] 姜鑫