Tammam Azzam doesn't claim to be a representative of the Syrian people, but neither does he want to be treated as an individual. He wants to be one his fellow countrymen. And yet, as an artist, individuality is a necessity if one is to make a living. Perhaps that is why his first solo exhibition in London, I, the Syrian, a collection of surreal digital collages, bristles with defiance, paradox and tragedy.
Belgian- born designer Jonathan Riss has always had a proclivity for beautiful design and intricate detail. At 18, he had wanted to become an architect and contemplated on a move to New York. Ever the artistic nomad though, he disliked the thought of being geographically static while going through formal education. And so he travelled- to learn.
Desmond Rayner's new show, titled Major Minis, currently held at the Piper Gallery in Fitzrovia, London, is an invitation to loose and to find yourself at the same time exploring his intricate drawings.
The Turner Prize is important because it keeps the art world, the cultural scene awake. Yes. its atmosphere can be too full of art 'luvvies' and 'mavens' and the 'usual suspects' but they're easier to get rid of than the idea - and need - that art and culture matter. They do. They are what we are. What Laure Prouvost's installation entitled: 'Wantee' (punters put a sum total of £22 on her chances of winning, according to Ladbrokes ) demonstrates, too, is that big, bad Mighty London with its critics/punters/experts/buyers doesn't always get it right.
Fifty one years ago, Blowin' In The Wind was adopted as some kind of clarion call for an energetic, shackled and questioning youth to stop relying on their elders for answers, to open their eyes to the unfairness around them, to strive to find a different path at the end of which truths would miraculously materialise.