Lygia Pape at the Hauser and Wirth…

I was blown away by the fantastic Exhibition by Brazilian artist Lygia Pape who died in 2004. Curated by Olivia Renaud Clement (Diwan, 2016). Pape was part of the Neo Concrete movement (Tate, 2016). Her work explores negative Space.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                 Tteia 1C (1976-2002)

 

What I found so exciting about the work was how it related to mine. Tteia 1C (1976-2002)  was created by using silver thread and nails. One line of thread was used to create geometric shapes. In this particular piece the space between the threads and the light and darkness of the lighting, weave in and out of the work. `The positive marks and negative spaces were of equal importance in an interpretation` (Hauser and Wirth, 2016). The light and dark forming one dimension of negative space, and also with the negative space between the silver threads themselves; A multifaceted piece.

Like a continuum of line, like a time line. One continuous line repeated over and over. Linking one end to another. I have been using video and tape to explore `Line`, the time line of a repetitive action reversed and repeated over and over. Pape`s work had similar qualities I thought. The magical spun, woven effect, like an orchestrated spiders web, the lighting streamed across the work at all different angles and you were invited to walk around the edges of the work, like a theatrical performance, the way the light reflected back to your eyes, adding mystery and wonder to the geometric shape. This was a perfect example of a repeated line,

 

Bibliography

Célia Pinto, Regina. (2016) http://arteonline.arq.br/museu/ensaios/ensaiosantigos/neoconcrete.htm (Accessed 9/11/16)

Diwan, Charlotte.(2016) [Enquiring about the Curator of the Exhibition. On 9th November 2016]

Hauser and Wirth, (2016) Lygia Pape. [Press Release]

Tate. (2016) Neo Concrete Movement. http://www.tate.org.uk/learn/online-resources/glossary/n/neo-concrete (Accessed 9/11/16)

 

DeWain Valentine At the Almine Rech Gallery…

I was intrigued to see what this exhibition had to offer. Through this experience I have learnt a lot more about different American Art Movements that took place in the 1960’s and 70’s, in particular the Light and Space movement that DeWain Valentine (b: 1936) became a part of. Valentine talks about his work having a supernatural power, capturing the `Atmosphere` of the Southern Californian, Hawaiian and Venetian places he visits, like cuttings from the sky and ocean (Greenberger, 2015).

Despite these works being produced in the late 1960’s through to the early 1990’s,  I think the resin pieces are still exceptionally cutting edge in their materiality. In the well-lit space of the gallery, the three Circle Clear-Blue. (1971) Circle Blue to Gray (1970) and Circle Clear-Rose (1970) sent you on a journey of colour feeling dreamy, conjuring up feelings of escapism.

Circle Clear- Rose 1970

In contrast, Clear Portal (1976-2014) created distortion within the environment of the space disorientating the viewer not only by shards of prismatic colours created within the work, but also in the way it distorted the space it was in, making me feel nauseous.

Clear Portal 1969-2014

DeWain says “I am fascinated by the idea of being aware of the outer surface of an object, of seeing through it and of seeing also the inner surface” (Almine Gallery, 2015). I did feel like I was mesmerised by the multitude of perspectives you could see within the work when walking round it and stationary. Jesc Bunyard Says “The works convey the artist’s interest in perception and colour, and bring an aura of calm to the gallery’s area. (Bunyard, 2015). Highly recommended and well worth a visit.

Bibliography

Bunyard, Jesc (2015) Art and Culture: The Best of Freize Masters 2015. At: http://www.alminerech.com/dbfiles/mfile/337900/337923/HungerTV_DWV_2015.pdf (Accessed 22/1/16)

Greenberger, Alex (2015)  `Big Pieces of the sky and ocean`: Dewain Valentine on his first New York in 30 years. At: http://www.artnews.com/2015/06/26/big-pieces-of-the-sky-and-ocean-de-wain-valentine-on-his-first-new-york-solo-show-in-30-years/ (Accessed 26/11/15)

Lacma50 (s.d.) Dewain Valentine At: http://collections.lacma.org/node/424161  (Accessed 24/11/15)

 

 

Exhibition Review: Alexander Calder

Performing Sculpture

By

Alexander Calder

 At the Tate Modern

I had not heard much about Alexander Calder (b. 1898) before visiting the Tate. I like the element of surprise and the impact of first impressions. Calder was a modernist Artist who’s work not only invented the concept of the ` Mobile` a phrase coined by Duchamp (Tate,s.d) but also in his wire sculptures, toys and motorised assemblages. The intention of the exhibition has been to focus on Calder’s pioneering approach to sculpture, in the way he questioned traditional idea’s about the medium he worked with (Interpretation Team, 2015).

I was fascinated by the multi-dimensional concepts that Calder explored in his life time.

I was first presented with Hercules and Lion (1928) a wire sculpture suspended from the ceiling. Here Calder created a work that was more about line rather than mass, unlike his contemporaries in the Modernist era who used more solid materials of paint to depict similar subject matter. This was like a drawing in the air, I was fascinated by the 3 dimensional qualities of this piece.

Calder demonstrated his concepts around staged random sounds with Small Sphere and Heavy Sphere (1932-3), objects, chosen for their resonance were strategically placed to be struck by two suspended spheres moved by a participant. Here Calder incorporates performance, musical instruments and sculpture, influencing artists such as John Cage (Interpretation Team, 2015)

Over all I can see how work Calder created was really pioneering for its time, and his works have been a catalyst for many artists. Using different materials in innovative ways Calder touches on a plethora of subject matter and multi-sensory experimentation.

Bibliography

Calder foundation (s.d) Alexander Calder: Performing Sculpture. At: http://www.calder.org/news/blog (Accessed 17/11/15)

Interpretation Team (2015) Alexander Calder: Performing Sculpture. London: Tate

Yale University Press (2015) Alexander Calder: Performing Sculpture. At: https://yalepress.yale.edu/yupbooks/book.asp?isbn=9780300219159 (Accessed 17/11/15)

Tate (s.d) Alexander Calder: Performing Sculpture. At: http://www.tate.org.uk/whats-on/tate-modern/exhibition/alexander-calder-performing-sculpture (Accessed 17/11/15)

 

Gallery

I have been working with colour this week, by painting large strips onto A0 paper. I found my self doing this in a desperate attempt to connect with materials. I am still struggling to find a concept behind my work, but moving back into colour is a familiar place for me….

Final image cropped

First Painted strips..

I then decided to cut these out and then arrange them across the wall..

Cropped Cut strips

I wasn’t very satisfied with the fact that you could see the white paper from underneath the strips and also the tape I was using to stick the strips to the wall kept coming away.

I then decided to paint the other sides of the strips and use velcro to attach the strips to the wall, which worked much better..

Cropped final image

The downside of this work I think is that the colour isn’t as solid as I would have liked, particularly the green. This is household water based gloss, which actually dries brighter when applied. Unlike acrylic paint which dulls after application.

The next idea I wanted to work with was with some Vacuum Form plastic. I love the shiny surface of this material, it’s elasticity and the bright colours you can get.

I  devised a system of using dark to light colours and repeating the process until I came to the end of the lengths. Then using clear tape to secure the lengths together..

Cropped Final Outcome

Inspirations from artists are:

Gehard Richter  4900 ColoursGerhard Richter 4900 Colours image

Here Richter uses the denomination of chance with a computer program to determine which colours go together in each panel. Using Enamel paint. Mixing the colours himself.

 

Serpentine Gallery, (2008) Gerhard Richter's 4900 Colours: Version II At: http://www.serpentinegalleries.org/exhibitions-events/gerhard-richters-4900-colours-version-ii (Accessed 17/11/15)

Jim Lambie Zobop Colour 1999

Jim Lambie, Zobop (1999) Lambie uses coloured tape working from the outside in of a space which, in turn creates a rippling design on the Scottish National Gallery.

Generation Scotland (s.d) Generation At: http://generationartscotland.org/artists/jim-lambie/ (Accessed 17/11/15)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Exhibition No: 2. Anj Smith at The Hauser and Wirth….

Phosphor on the Palms By Anj Smith

At Hauser and Wirth

I had not really heard much about this artist or the Exhibition before entering, but was blown away by the quality of the workmanship and the novel use of materials. Smith talks about this exhibition exploring shifting boundaries and disintegration, encompassing death and desire, sexuality and language (Hauser and Wirth, 2015).

Letters of the Unconscious image

Fig. 1.

When entering the space, I felt drawn towards the unframed paintings, like they were windows into a lost land. Smith invites you into this dark and formidable world with exquisite detail and intense vibrancy of colour. This is juxtaposed with the clean, white space of the gallery.

When encountering the first work, Letters of the Unconscious (2015) (See Fig.1) I was drawn in by each individual hair painted and the level of detail in the applied oils. As I absorbed the image, I found myself confronted with the depiction of a monkey`s bottom; Smith had successfully drawn me into her bleak and mysterious world. Not only was it possible to see every line of hair Smith articulated through her brush strokes, but also in the three dimensional quality of the pieces. Smith explores shifting boundaries in the way her work seems to mutate into something different, like Uncurtaining the Night (2014). The paint appears to drip off the canvas, morphing into a new entity; the glossy finish enhances the vivid colours applied underneath. They border on the idea of assemblage in the types of objects portrayed in these works.

Uncurtaining The Night 2014

Fig. 2.

This Exhibition was packed with layers symbolism and animal imagery, many of which could easily be missed by the viewer, in their delicate intricacy and positioning. With huge hints to surrealism, Smith successfully identifies with concepts of death and sexuality in this sombre series of paintings. With the Beauty of articulation coupled with death and a warped sense of deep seated, dark, unconscious impulses.

Bibliography

Keh, Pei-Ru (2013) ‘The Flowering of Phantoms’ by Anj Smith at Hauser & Wirth, New York At: http://www.wallpaper.com/art/the-flowering-of-phantoms-by-anj-smith-at-hauser-wirth-new-york (Accessed 10/11/15)

Hauser & Wirth, (2015). Anj Smith: Phosphor on the Palms. [Paper copy]

Stevens, Wallace (b.1879) Fabliau of Florida. At: : https://www.poets.org/poetsorg/poem/fabliau-florida (Accessed 10/11/15

Timeout, (2015) Anj Smith.At: http://www.timeout.com/london/art/anj-smith-phosphor-on-the-palms (Accessed 11/11/15)

Tate (s.d) Romanticism. At: http://www.tate.org.uk/learn/online-resources/glossary/r/romanticism (Accessed 13/11/15)

Images

Figure 1. Letters of the Unconscious (2015) [Oil paint on Linen] At: http://www.hauserwirth.com/exhibitions/2565/anj-smith-phosphor-on-the-palms/list-of-works/1/ (Accessed 13/11/15)

Figure 2. Uncurtaining the Night. (2014) At: http://www.hauserwirth.com/exhibitions/list-of-works/view?exhibition_id=2565&p=16 (Accessed 13/11/15)

Work Update…

After completing `Contours` a fellow student thought my work reminded her of Barbara Hepworth so I looked her up

I thought these looked really interesting pieces that seemed to be similar to my work.

Barbara Hepworth Orpheus 1956 9

 Orpheus

Make Me a Dress by Barbara-Hepworth-006

Make Me a Dress

Barbara Hepworth: Sculpture for a Modern World | Tate Britain 24 June - 25 October 2015 to promote exhibition only ...  Barbara Hepworth Oval Form (Trezion) 1961-63 Bronze 940 x 1440 x 870 mm Aberdeen Art Gallery and Museums Collections ©Bowness, Hepworth Estate

 

Oval form (Trezion)

Her works are from the Modernist Era. I also got this feedback from other tutors that my work reminded them of this time period of making art.

After taking Contours apart, I decided to paint the wooden contours I made from plywood white, placing the wooden structure in the background and bring the space created by the angles and layers to the foreground. Investigating the negative space within the layers.

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I have been inspired by negative spaces created by the likes of Rachel Whiteread http://thegreatexposition.com/?p=1859 ( Accessed 29/10/15) Ghost 1, This I find interesting particularly in the use of materials to express a feeling.

Cornelia Parker, made dust ear plugs from the dust in St Pauls Cathederal. At: http://ridiculouslyinteresting.com/2011/07/24/from-the-dusty-corners-of-the-museum-part-two-cornelia-parker/ Accessed (10/11/15)

I thought that her interest in the intangible whispers of the ` whispering Gallery` of St Pauls Catherderal. Was really well articulated in this work. Making something intangible, Tangible. Why would you want to articulate that?

I think this is a really interesting way of articulating a space because it’s not something that you would immediately think of.

Ai Weiwei Exhibition at the Royal Academy Review…

Ai Weiwei Exhibition at the Royal Academy

On entering the Exhibition, it felt like China had come to the Royal Academy. Despite the volume of people at the venue, and considering that a large amount of curation took place out of the country, the exhibits worked in harmony with the grandeur of each room. The general theme I felt throughout the exhibition was the use of traditional Chinese craftsmanship methods, and the materials sourced that added to the narrative of the works. What Ai wanted to address within this body of work is comment on creative freedom, censorship and human rights (Royal Academy of Arts, 2015).

Straight (2008-12) is a prime example of materials being used to add to the narrative of the work. Being made of the rebar from the collapsed buildings hit by the Sichuan earthquake in 2008. Each length was hammered up to 200 times each, reforming them into their original state. Hudson talks about this work as initially being an `abstract physical object` (Hudson, 2015) until you realise the connection between the material and the names on the wall in the same room. I thought this added a whole new significance to the work. The lives being lost for ever, but the rebar could be brought back to its original state.

In Fragments (2005) beams and pillars from demolished Qing Dynasty temples have been reassembled into a map of China’s borders. Aviva talks about Ai exploring the marriage between ancient discarded objects and modern aesthetics being a vessel for exploring the cultural and spatial transformations of modern China. In the use of this material, this again adds huge gravitas to the narrative of this work, the history and authenticity being reinforced.

Bibliography

BBC News (2013) Sichuan 2008: A disaster on an immense scale. At: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-22398684 (Accessed 4/11/15)

Hudson, Mark (2015) Ai Weiwei, Royal Academy, review: ‘immensely impressive’ At: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/art/what-to-see/ai-weiwei-royal-academy-review/ (Accessed 29/10/15)

Locke, Adrian. (2015) Ai Weiwei. London: Royal Academy of Arts

Royal Academy of Art.(2015) Major artist and cultural phenomenon Ai Weiwei takes over our main galleries At: https://www.royalacademy.org.uk/exhibition/ai-weiwei?gclid=CPzB1cf758gCFQUOwwodvQgDiw (Accessed 29/10/15)

Royal Academy of Arts. (2015) Put Your Questions to Ai Weiwei. At: https://storify.com/RoyalAcademy/askaiweiwei-at-the-ra (Accessed 29/10/15)

Shen, Aviva. (2012) Past and Present Clash in Ai WeiWei’s “Fragments” At: http://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/past-and-present-clash-in-ai-weiweis-fragments-96502760/#cSg5SrroKXl1qJw6.99 (Accessed 5/11/15)

Sooke, Alastair. (2015). Ai Weiwei interview: “I would not separate my art from my so-called activism” At: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/art/artists/inside-ai-weiweis-berlin-bunker/ (Accessed 2/11/15)

Yeung, Peter. (2015) Ai Weiwei: a tumultuous timeline. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/art/11522659/Ai-Weiwei-a-tumultuous-timeline.html (Accessed 2/11/15)