August Diary: where to go and what to see

29 July 2016
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6 minute read

Fancy a break from the long, hot summer sun and all the misery in the news at the moment? Here’s the It’s Nice That team’s top picks for what to do and what’s going on in the world of art, design and film around the world this month, including a great selection of exhibitions, films and performances in pleasantly cool galleries and cinemas. Oodles of distraction and inspiration await you, enjoy!

Pedro Almodóvar Season
1 August – 5 October, BFI Southbank, London

BFI Southbank will be running a two-month season dedicated to one of the contemporary cinemas most celebrated filmmakers, Pedro Almodóvar.

The schedule will include the full suite of his cinematic oeuvre including favourites such as Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown (1988), All about My Mother (1999) and Volver (2006), as well as the premiere of his 20th feature Julieta in advance of its countrywide release.

The director has curated a personal selection of 13 Spanish films that have influenced and inspired his career, to be screened alongside throughout the season, which will also on-stage appearances from directors Pedro Almodóvar and Pablo Berger, actor Rossy de Palma and fashion designer Jean Paul Gaultier. A special event, Pedro Almodóvar in Conversation will take place on 12 August.


Charles Fréger: Namahage from Yokainoshima

Charles Fréger: Yokainoshima
4 July – 28 August, L’Eglise des Trinitaires, Arles

Charles Fréger is exhibiting his arresting photographic series Yokainoshima, which capture in portrait the Yokai spirits that continue to pervade Japanese culture as harbingers of fortune, abundance and fertility during festivals and the changing of seasons. Shot through Fréger’s distinctive style, the enigmatic spirits and monsters featured in the exhibition line the historic church walls of Église des Trinitaires.

Last month, we interviewed Charles Fréger on his beguiling series, discussing his practice, fascinations and the intricacies of Yokai spirits in modern day Japan.

Mario Testino: No Limits
Until 18 September, Kunstforeningen GL Strand, Copenhagen

Mario Testino’s first exhibition in Denmark features a curated selection of the Peruvian photographer’s considerable work in fashion and portraiture. No Limits concerns itself with presenting both a comprehensive showcase and one that juxtaposes the plethora of contexts and subjects Testino considers and compounds in his work. The exhibition also for the first time features previously unseen portraits of Denmark’s Crown Princess and Crown Prince shot by Testino.

The exhibition closes with a screening of the short film Testino by Harbers Studios and Wondrous, featuring an intimate conversation between filmmaker Jesse Dylan and Mario Testino discussing the photographer’s life and prolific body of work.

The Keeper
20 July – 25 September, New Museum, New York, USA

The Keeper brings together imaginary museums, personal collections and unusual assemblages for an exhibition dedicated to the recording and preservation of memory, objects and ephemera. It focuses on collectors and their motivations; and includes collections of rare stones, string figures, scrapbooks and teddy bears, as well as Susan Hiller’s film The Last Silent Movie and artefacts from the National Museum of Beirut melted together by shell fire during the civil war.

Edinburgh Art Festival
28 July – 28 August, across Edinburgh

There’s 250 exhibitors exhibiting at 40 exhibitions in 30 venues across the city for Edinburgh Art Festival, as well as seven specially commissioned contemporary monuments. Pakistani artist Bani Abidi has made an immersive sound installation exploring the Indian soldiers who fought in WW1, and Ciara Phillips has created Dazzle Ship Scotland.


Peter Blake: Appropriated Alphabet no.7, 2013

Peter Blake: Alphabets, Letters & Numbers
13 August – 27 November, De La Warr Pavilion, Bexhill-On-Sea, UK

Peter Blake’s work has long been informed by and made up of collaged references to particular eras, people and past-times. In his exhibition Alphabets, Letters & Numbers, Blake shows the letterforms and numerics from his vast archive, as well as alphabets informed by his fascination with pop culture and more instructional pieces that illustrate the objects, manoeuvres and animals associated with each letter.

The New York International Fringe Festival
12 – 28 August, numerous venues across New York City

As well as Edinburgh’s notorious Fringe Festival also happening in August (5-29), New York City will play host to its own Fringe Festival with a host of international offerings of theatre and dance. Founded in 1997, this year is the festival’s 20th incarnation and includes 200 performances to choose from at $18 a ticket.


Anri Sala: Dammi i Colori, 2003

The Starr Cinema
6 – 28 August 2016, Tate Modern, London

Every weekend in August at the Tate Modern, Tate Film will present a selection of shorts from its collection in the Starr Cinema – the gallery’s newly renamed and refurbished home for film. A chance to experience never-before screened films within a cinema setting, each work in the schedule correlates with a theme in the work currently on show in the Boiler House and the new Switch House extension.

Partners in Design: Alfred H. Barr, Jr. and Philip Johnson
until 21 August 2016, Montréal Museum of Fine Arts, Montréal

An insightful exhibition into the little-known, influential collaboration between Alfred H. Barr Jr. the first director of MoMA and Philip Johnson MoMA’s first curator of architecture. The exhibition focuses on the pair’s contributions to Bauhaus and modern design in North America up to the MoMA exhibitions of the 1930s.

Making use of both conventional modes of presentation and multi-platform digital technology (boasting autostereoscopic 3D display) the exhibtion brings together and contextualises an archive of over seventy influential objects across furniture, textile and industrial design.


We Make Carpets: Umbrella Carpet 2

Dream Out Loud: Designing for Tomorrow’s Demands
26 August 2016 – 1 January 2017, Stedelijk, Amsterdam

The Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam has announced its latest bi-annual exhibition dedicated to documenting the development in a specific creative field or industry, focusing this time around on contemporary and future design.

This major bi-annual survey will spotlight a curated selection of 26 contributors, from over 750 projects by some 400 designers submitted in response to an open call by the museum, inciting young and burgeoning designers to dream out loud, imagine a better tomorrow and strive for designing the future. The inventive works conceive designs and notions for sustainability, meat substitution, upcycling, forward-thinking fashion and methods of fighting pollution in a plethora of visual engaging modes.


Aapo Huhta

Aapo Huhta: Young Nordic Photographer of the Year 2015
until 28 August, Fotografiska, Stockholm

Fotografiska in Stockholm is showcasing the work of Finnish photographer and recipient of the Fotografiska scholarship, Aapo Huhta, in his first major solo exhibition.

Huhta won the scholarship for his series Block an almost colourless, colour photographic study of New York capturing the multitudinal hues of black, white and grey abundant in the claustrophobic cityscape and embodied by its hyper-masculinised inhabitants.

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