Since 2010, the Irish painter Brian Maguire has worked in Juárez, Mexico, creating work in response to the proliferation of deaths that have followed in wake of the Mexican drug war. Maguire’s affinity for social activism stems from his involvement in the civil rights movement of Northern Ireland in the 70s. His large scale paintings—which utilize wide, open brushstrokes and combine rough, dry marks with vertical and horizontal drips—aim to deny any poetic sensibility to the harsh scenes (dismembered body parts and weaponry) they often depict.
Through observation, Maguire draws attention to marginalized voices. In the case of Blood Rising, his documentary co-produced with Mark McLoughlin, the artist seeks to shed light on the staggering number of women murdered in Juárez (a practice known as known as feminocidio) through portraiture. As Ed Vulliamy of the The Guardian remarks in relation to his work, Maguire correlates the place between narrator and voyeur through occupying a role as facilitator which he is uniquely careful not to exploit.
ArtlystArt Basel’s fifth edition in Hong Kong has closed with encouraging sales recorded across all levels of the market. This demonstrates a continued demand for high-quality works by the world’s leading international collectors and institutions. Attendance at this year’s show, whose Lead Partner is UBS, rose to nearly 80,000 – due to the introduction of evening ticket sales and improved crowd control measures – and attracted leading members of the international art world. Many observers felt that this edition had built on the show’s strong history to attain new levels – Art Basel in Hong Kong now not only stands as the premier fair in Asia but also as one of the leading fairs worldwide. Read More
ARTSY EDITORIAL by Alexxa GotthardtFergus McCaffrey’s elegant booth mingles the practices of two American artists who came of age in the 1960s and happen to be great friends. The works of Marcia Hafif and Richard Nonas, however, differ greatly—and that’s precisely what makes this presentation so compelling. Hafif’s hyper-saturated canvases featuring curvaceous forms that resemble bodily contours (she calls these her “Pop-Minimal” paintings) draw you in. Nonas’s more subtle patinaed steel sculptures cover the floor. They resemble architectural forms or ritualized objects; given Nonas’s early years as an anthropologist, they just might be inspired by them, too. Read More