Opening - Two interesting exhibitions at ION

ION shoppers are in for a treat; Opera Gallery has just opened its Beyond Limits exhibition. There are fewer of Marc Quinn’s works than predicted because apparently many sold as they were being put up on the walls, but what is Quinn’s loss is Mr Brainwash’s gain. The gallery is giving big play to the controversial and ‘mysterious’ street artist, who was featured in Bansky’s film. When I was visiting the gallery one collector walked in, briefly looked around and promptly reserved two, including this Statue of Liberty, which I really love! There is also a big Charlie Chaplin, several Campbell soup spray paints (which is a nice play on Warhol’s work). I find his appropriations of famous personalities, done in a mix of pop art and spray painting style, less interesting than when he actually comments on spray painting and the elevation of its status (as in the Campbell soup paintings). The overall show has a lot to offer, including works by Spanish sculptor Manolo Valdes (see head below). Definitely worth a visit!

One floor up, Art Singapore is also putting on a preview of its upcoming fair (October). There are several large wood sculptures by Lee Jae-Hyo who specializes in creating works from sanded and charred wood, giving the materials a second life. Working from new and recycled wood, Lee shows the “energy of the natural material” by leaving cracks apparent in the wood, along with the pattern of the grain. There is a very interesting “painting” from him with wood, which is quite beautiful.