freek wambacq


“Wambacq’s work seems to situate itself on an uncertain border, perhaps even a fault-line, between sculpture, architecture and design. His installations frequently consist of subtractive and additive processes, or discreet interventions that alter the existing space. I was also charmed by his laser engravings of the architecture and public sculptures in the Sicilian city Gibellina Nuova on taut red-skinned apples. These portable keepsakes of concrete monuments built on shaky ground – the original Gibellina was destroyed by an earthquake in 1968 – were presented nestled in their cardboard shipping and storage boxes. Over time, decay had transformed the precise drawings: some of them had been absorbed like scars back into the skin, while others had become more distinct. It sounds trite, but in the end those apples helped me to realize that, when it came to the city of Brussels, I had really only started to scratch the surface.”

–Aaron Schuster and Vivian Rehberg @ Freize

Frieze magazine:

Freek Wambacq’s site: 

youTube video of Wambacq’s apples:

w. h. auden on w. b. yeats


(w. h. auden’s typewriter)

In Memory of W.B. Yeats (1865 -1939)
by W.H. Auden (1907-1973)

He disappeared in the dead of winter:
The brooks were frozen, the airports almost deserted,
And snow disfigured the public statues;
The mercury sank in the mouth of the dying day.
What instruments we have agree
The day of his death was a dark cold day.

Far from his illness
The wolves ran on through the evergreen forests,
The peasant river
was untempted by the fashionable quays;
By mourning tongues
The death of the poet was kept from his poems.

But for him it was his last afternoon as himself,
An afternoon of nurses and rumors;
The provinces of his body revolted,
The squares of his mind were empty,
Silence invaded the suburbs,
The current of his feeling failed; he became his admirers.

Now he is scattered among a hundred cities
And wholly given over to unfamiliar affections,
To find his happiness in another kind of wood
And be punished under a foreign code of conscience.
The words of a dead man
Are modified in the guts of the living.

But in the importance and noise of tomorrow
When the brokers are roaring like beasts on the floor of the Bourse,
And the poor have the sufferings to which they are fairly accustomed,
And each in the cell of himself is almost convinced of his freedom,
A few thousand will think of this day
As one thinks of a day when one did something slightly unusual.
What instruments we have agree
The day of his death was a dark cold day.


You were silly like us; your gift survived it all:
The parish of rich women, physical decay,
Yourself. Mad Ireland hurt you into poetry.
Now Ireland has its madness and her weather still,
For poetry makes nothing happen: it survives
In the valley of its making where executives
Would never want to tamper, flows on south
From ranches of isolation and the busy griefs,
Raw towns that we believe and die in; it survives,
A way of happening, a mouth.


Earth, receive an honored guest:
William Yeats is laid to rest.
Yet let the Irish vessel lie
Emptied of its poetry.

In the nightmare of the dark,
All the dogs of Europe bark,
And the living nations wait,
Each sequestered in its hate;

Intellectual disgrace
Stares from every human face,
And the seas of pity lie
Locked and frozen in each eye.

Fellow poet, follow right
To the bottom of the night,
With your unconstraining voice
Still persuade us to rejoice;

With the framing of a verse
Make a vineyard of the curse,
Sing of human unsuccess
In a rapture of distress;

In the deserts of the heart
Let the healing fountain start,
In the prison of his days
Teach the free man how to praise.

jean-etienne liotard


Jean-Étienne Liotard (1702–1789) Archduchess Marie-Antoinette of Austria (1755–1793), 1762 Black chalk, graphite pencil, watercolor, and pastel on very thin white laid paper, heightened with color on the verso 31.1 x 24.9 cm (12 1/4 x 9 13/16 in.) Musées d’Art et d’Histoire, Cabinet des Dessins


Jean-Etienne Liotard



Jean-Etienne Liotard was born in Geneva, Switzerland to French parents.  He was trained by Jean-Babtiste Masse as an enamellist & miniaturist in Paris.  His artistic beginnings also coincide with the emergence of the Rococo period in European art & design. He worked as a portraitist to the European intelligentsia & royalty of his day.  He is said to have traveled widely including to the Ottoman Empire (modern day Turkey).  His work sometimes shows Turkish influence, not in style but in content.  He is also well known for his extraordinary work with pastels.  The pastel works are some of the finest in the medium.

He also made oil paintings, watercolors, miniatures, prints & drawings, all with a deft handling of each (or combination thereof).

His work exemplifies strong attention to the subtleties of skin, hair, fabric & overall surface detail.  His images are amazingly realistic, but his delicacy of handling softens the imagery & soothes the harshness a “true” image would have.

He died wealthy & although he was well-known in his day, he remains somewhat obscure today.  A 2006 show at the Frick Collection in New York City brought a small part of Liotard’s work to American audiences.

–Aurelio Madrid 


A New York Times article on the Frick show:


A link to the Liotard show at the Frick:


About e-flux

“Established in January 1999 in New York, e-flux is an international network which reaches more then 50,000 visual art professionals on daily bases through its website, e-mail list and special projects. Its news digest – e-flux announcements – distributes information on some of the world’s most important contemporary art exhibitions, publications and symposia.

The daily digest is put together in cooperation with nearly a thousand leading international museums, art centers, foundations, galleries, biennials and art journals. Our focused and selective approach to the information we choose to distribute has been rewarded by an exceptionally high degree of attention and responsiveness from our readers.” –e-flux

ben johnson


‘The Liverpool Cityscape’, Ben Johnson

‘The Liverpool Cityscape’ painting commission

In 2008 Liverpool will become European Capital of Culture. To celebrate this, and to create a lasting legacy for the city, National Museums Liverpool, together with the Liverpool Culture Company and Professor Phil Redmond CBE and Mrs Alexis Redmond, have commissioned the artist Ben Johnson to create a major painting, ‘The Liverpool Cityscape’.