Ian Were writes feature articles on, and stories about, art and design and edits arts publications. His writing and editing is widely published. [More] [THESE PAGES CONTAIN: Selected articles published in art books and in magazines – including screen and print; short stories; editing projects; a blog and archive.]
‘TUZLU SU’ (SALTWATER): 14th Istanbul Biennial
Article first published in Eyeline magazine no.85, 2016, © Eyeline.
The 14th Istanbul Biennial, ‘Saltwater: A Theory of Thought Forms’, was spread across this vast city of 14 million, a city that, for most of its long history, has remained one of the world’s most cosmopolitan and most visited. In her opening statement curator, Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev, said this: . . . you will spend quite a bit of time on salt water. There is a slowing down of the experience of art due to the travel between venues, especially on ferries. This is very healthy: salt water helps to heal respiratory problems . . . as well as calming the nerves . . .
[SCREEN AND PRINT]
Laurie Anderson’s Heart of a Dog
Laurie Anderson’s new film screened at the 2016 Sydney, Queensland and Melbourne Film Festivals.
Heart of a Dog begins with Anderson’s familiar heart-warming sounds accompanied by animated images of herself with her comforting, matter-of-fact voice-over: ‘This is my dream body, the one I use to walk around — in my dream. In this dream, I’m in a hospital bed, and it’s like a scene from a movie . . .’ [More]
The 8th Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art: In conversation with curator Aaron Seeto
Article first published in Broadsheet magazine no.44.3,2015, Contemporary Art Centre of SA Inc.
Ian Were: Aaron, in what position do you think the Asia Pacific Triennial (APT) series of exhibitions stand right now in the world of contemporary art?
Aaron Seeto: Let’s look at the legacy of the APT . . . it has substantially driven the discourse around contemporary art from the region and it is one of the most important periodic exhibitions which Australia produces . . .
14th Istanbul Art Biennial: ‘Armenian shadows & whispers’
Article published @ Kulture/Pulse magazine, 26 October 2015, Sydney.
The 14th Istanbul Biennial’s 36 venues included two linked to Turkish-Armenian journalist Hrant Dink who was shot in Istanbul in 2007 by a Turkish nationalist. At his funeral 100,000 citizens marched in protest of the assassination. Curator Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev has done a remarkable job of integrating artists with Armenian backgrounds and ideas . . .
‘Sweat Memories. Sweet Memories.’
Published online at Worn Stories edited by Emily Spivack, NYC. From a longer story published in The Memory of Clothes, Robyn Gibson (Ed.), 2015, © SensePublications (Rotterdam).
Clothes take on part of the wearer, a memory by way of perspiration, blood, or traces of other bodily liquids, evident through a scent or stain. Small scenarios like that particularly apply to our intimate wear. Sweat, urine and preseminal and vaginal fluids leaking a little into our underclothes . . . [See Worn Stories]
Henri van Noordenburg: Landscapes of Fact and Fiction
Article published in FABRIK magazine no.28, 2015, Los Angeles.
Who or what inhabits these places? It looks like winter: white, crisp and maybe inhospitable. There are signs of habitation: ruins of farm house and barns; remnants of fences . . . People have lived here but is anyone still left? Van Noordenburg invites us to speculate. Maybe not the good and bad citizens who inhabit the landscapes of TV series like Lilyhammer or Fortitude . . . but there is evidence of drama . . .
[See Fabrik magazine no.28, then go to pp.46-53.]
New Design on the Cusp: Into the Next Decade
Article first published in Eyeline magazine no.82, 2015, © Eyeline.
For artist-designers, like Heiss, Looi, Herpen and others . . . what makes 3D printing technology extraordinary is its ability to interpret complex designs in one go. The direct forming process where additive layers build intricate products out of plastics and metal, are not possible using conventional manufacturing methods. Artists’ and designers’ explorations of 3D printing are teetering on the cusp . . . [See magazines]
‘Sweet Memories of Scent and Sweat’, in The Memory of Clothes
Published in the book The Memory of Clothes, Robyn Gibson (Ed.), 2015, 29 writers and stories, 178pp. © SensePublications (Rotterdam, Boston, Taipei) and authors.
The sweet smell of her sex on me — hers and mine mixed together — would not only keep the memory alive the following day, but maintain partial arousal as well. Sometimes I’d call her and say in a half-whisper: ‘I still have you on me’, meaning both on my flesh and fabric. I’d shower later, just before her scent turned sour. Such is the power of these things . . .
[See SensePublishers and Amazon]
‘Common Ground’, 13th International Architecture Biennale, Venice
Article first published in Eyeline magazine no.80, 2014, © Eyeline.
The two remarkable things about the 13th Venice Architecture Biennale were its adherence to the theme, ‘Common Ground’ — at least on the face of it — and the similarity of many presentations to previous art biennales including Venice . . . [See magazines]
The bar on Phra Nang beach
It’s a warm Saturday evening in mid-January and I order a glass of wine at the best sunset bar on the most perfect beach in Thailand. I ask for the Monsoon Valley rosé but the bar doesn’t have it. Their Colombard however, is crisp and good for sipping on a night like this . . . [See short stories]
Spalding and me
Before I really knew who he was I saw Spalding Gray perform at the 1986 Adelaide Festival. My first monologue experience was Sex and Death to Age 14, and then I went back to as many as I could get tickets for . . .
[See short stories]