Lucy Jones, Landscape and Inscape / Flowers Gallery, London

Lucy Jones, Landscape and Inscape / Flowers Gallery, London

Lucy Jones, Landscape and Inscape
Flowers Gallery, LONDON
23 May – 6 Jul 2019

British artist Lucy Jones is renowned for her raw, wild landscapes and distinctively provocative self-portraits, characterised by expressive brushwork and vibrant colour. Balancing an intricate rendering of line and space in her landscapes with the powerful simplicity of her portraits, Jones’s paintings conduct a journey through both interior landscapes and the external world beyond.

Lucy Jones, Hot Summer Sun, 2018 – Oil on canvas

Landscapes and Inscapes, an exhibition of new landscape and portrait paintings includes a portrait of artist Grayson Perry, commissioned by the Attenborough Arts Centre (University of Leicester) which will be displayed for the first time. The exhibition also coincides with a the publication of a new book, Awkward Beauty published by Elephant (23 May 2019). Awkward Beauty is the first publication to draw together both her portraits and landscape paintings from the past twenty-five years. In her self-portraits, (for example With a Handicap Like Yours…) Jones’s revealing and defiant portrayal of her own body addresses ideas of femininity, aging and disability. Both personal and political, they address both the fragility and strength of the body, and society’s way of viewing difference in others. In recent years, Jones has also turned her attention to creating portraits of other people, working with male subjects close to her.

Lucy Jones, A Slow Sluggish River, 2019

Writer and Art Critic Philip Vann has described Jones’s transformative vision of humanity as showing “the inextricable dignity and vulnerability of other people, friends, loved ones and the artist herself – explored with a rare, expansive clarity, vibrancy and originality”.

BARNABY BARFORD, ‘MORE MORE MORE’ / David Gill Gallery, London

BARNABY BARFORD, ‘MORE MORE MORE’ / David Gill Gallery, London


David Gill Gallery, London

22nd May – 22nd June 2019

David Gill Gallery announces a new body of work by Barnaby Barford, comprising two large-scale installations, three series of works on paper in charcoal, coloured pencil, and oil bar and pastel, and a black-and-white, time-lapse film. Barford continues his exploration of the politics of happiness and our incessant need for more, seen in The Tower of Babel, 2015 [Victoria & Albert Museum] and ME WANT NOW, 2016 [David Gill Gallery], but with a new source of inspiration – the apple – nature’s ancient, primary object onto which we have long projected our myriad fears and desires.

In mythology, art history and religious symbolism, this most humble of fruits contains all the dilemmas and dualities of the human condition, epitomised by Adam and Eve’s original ‘more’ moment in the Garden of Eden. The apple is innocence and experience, sin and redemption, death and resurrection, youth and decay, love and sexuality. These tropes are repeated in secular stories from William Tell to Snow White; and the apple tree is at the heart of Pioneer folklore, dubbed ‘the great American fruit,’ by Ralph Waldo Emerson. The Apple Tree is Barford’s most theatrical work to date. Measuring 3m x 3m x 3m, with a trunk of gnarled, twisted steel that explodes into a canopy of looped plastic branches, like an airborne scribble, the tree resembles a child’s drawing and is hung with 92 bone china apples. ‘Activated’ when an apple is bought and snapped off the branch at its stalk (engineered in prototype nylon), the installation inveigles the apple-picker in a re-enactment of the fall of mankind.

Every apple is unique, hand-finished in oil paint in a rich, Disneyesque red, and slightly larger than life, enhancing an almost cartoonish tactility, exuding temptation. Each one bares a single word – chaos, courage, pizzazz, distraction, sovereignty, elitism, fame, truth, populism, sex – bringing to mind Medieval trees of virtues and vices, decorative diagrams that depicted a moral framework. Barford’s tree is a nod to contemporary issues with morality, but it is also informed by his trademark dark humour. As we prefix the words with ‘more,’ a reaction set-up by the title of the show, they are infused with an ominous insistence; our expectations are poignant, funny and troubling. In contrast to the seductive, fairy-tale quality of the ceramic apples, the second installation, Land of Hope and Glory, is a vast, wrinkled fruit, 1.8m x 1.8m x 2m, sculpted from high density foam, covered in fibre glass, with an oak stalk and a 3-D printed calyx. This apple is painted a youthful, pale green but is now on the turn. The use of Elgar’s 1902 anthem as the title is freighted with ironic nostalgia, but it is also a call to action. We see that the deeply creviced sphere is a brain, a planet, a memento mori. The urgency of this dilapidation is reiterated in Barford’s film, shot over 2 and a half months, of a real apple, scarified with the word ‘more,’ rotting imperceptibly, until the letters have become illegible.

Barford talks of an ‘atmosphere of compulsive longing for more that surrounds us, like a fog or an invisible cage,’ and expresses this in brightly coloured drawings of apples partially obscured by impenetrable fences of words. In another series, he draws a single fruit, floating in black charcoal on white paper, with an intensity achieved by layers of drawing and rubbing out – our repetitive desires short-lived but indelible. That Barford is able to find poetry in what he clearly regards as a crisis, speaks to his belief in the possibility of goodness and change. The power of our drive for more, which mitigates against happiness and threatens the future of the Earth, also propels us to extraordinary feats of achievement. ‘Like all my work, this show is a critique of society but people respond in very different ways. They might be touched by those words on the apples and happy to participate by activating the sculpture; we all need more empathy, more emotion and more community.’ There is also a welcome lack of prescription in Barford’s practice, a humility that compels him to examine society’s ills, short-comings and anxieties in order to reflect on his own.

All Images © Courtesy David Gill Gallery and the Artist

Jannis Kounellis at Almine Rech Gallery, London

Jannis Kounellis at Almine Rech Gallery, London

Jannis Kounellis
Almine Rech Gallery
London, Grosvenor Hill

Almine Rech presents a new exhibition of works by Jannis Kounellis. This is the Artist’s first exhibition in the United Kingdom since his passing, in February 2017. Comprising works Kounellis made between 1960 and 2014, the exhibition intends to act as an extensive overview of the Artist’s career.

Jannis Kounellis moved to Rome in 1956, where he enrolled at the Accademia delle Belle Arti. While still a student, Kounellis was given his first exhibition, L’Alfabeto di Kounellis, at the “Galleria La Tartaruga”. There he exhibited monochrome works featuring large stencilled letters. Belonging to this series is Untitled, 1960, a work consisting of the letter Z repeated three times over. Referencing both the alphabetical signifiers and typefaces used on merchant ships for packaged cargo, Kounellis’ Alfabeti (Alphabet Paintings), are also concerned with the street signage the artist would have been exposed to in Rome, as can be noted in Remo, 1961. Decontextualising a letter, number or symbol through isolation, and placing it onto a white support, Kounellis’ intention was to focus the viewer’s attention on these marks, as if, by populating a surface, they were floating away, being cast adrift. In 1963, as the Alfabeti had become a recognised style, Kounellis began working with landscapes, and drawing his reference points from the physical world. This can be seen in Black Rose, 1965-66, a seminal work painted with Ducotone, a water-based wall paint, on large canvas measuring over two metres in length and width. Black Rose, 1965-66 emerges as a pivotal example of Kounellis’ role as a founding father of Arte Povera. Its organic shape is presented in matt black, reflecting Kounellis’ sculptural practice in painterly form. Compositionally, the work draws from the alchemical classification of elements, namely of fire, as well as demonstrating Arte Povera’s drive to abandon colour, perceived by Kounellis as alien to the context of post-war Italy.

Acting as a testimony to Jannis Kounellis’ interest in everyday materials to denote natural elements, Untitled, 1991, is made out of a lightbulb, steel and lead, the first and oldest metal in alchemy, and a symbol of purification. In a dialogue with ancient scientific teachings and centuries-old systems of belief, Kounellis can be observed transcribing these cultures into his own visual language, one which places him in direct conversation with artists such as Cy Twombly, Joseph Beuys, Giuseppe Penone, amongst many others who, with him, had worked since the 1950s on creating a new approach to artmaking, following the Second World War. Characteristic of Kounellis’ installation practice, two steel and coal works from 2013 and 2014 demonstrate the artist’s exploration around the weight of energy points and how these may impact space. Indeed, the piles of coal framed by Kounellis’ identifiable steel supports also function as a link to notions of smoke, an ever-present subject in his practice, as well as fire and industry. A link can also be seen between these two works and Kounellis’ personal relationship with the sea and with peripatetic travelling, specifically the Homeric notion of Nostos, the journey of a hero returning home by sea from Troy. Throughout the artist’s career, references abound to his birthplace, the Greek port of Piraeus, the former heart of the Greek shipping industry, and to transportation vessels, with Kounellis emerging as an Odysseus-like figure, on a constant voyage. The exhibition is completed with a further three works from 2014. Featuring jute, red oil and painted eggshell respectively, these artworks are concerned with the juxtaposition of precariousness and fragility with the robust iron surface which they are each comprised of. These works, which are amongst Kounellis’ final ones conjure ideas of creation and destruction, and see the artist continue in his pursuit for art in everyday life.

Jannis Kounellis (b. 1936, Piraeus, Greece, d. 2017, Rome, Italy) is regarded as one of the most influential figures in post-war art. With a practice spanning over sixty years, Kounellis is often referred to as one of the forefathers of the Arte Povera movement – one that arose in the 1960s and played a central role in redefining artistic practice with radical and highly original sculpture, performance and installation. Influenced by artists such as Alberto Burri, Lucio Fontana, Jackson Pollock and Franz Kline, and both within the context of Arte Povera and outside of it, throughout his career Kounellis interrogated and extended the boundaries of contemporary art, and in particular the possibilities of painting. Although most of his works are three-dimensional and comprised of ready-made objects (and sometimes even living things – horses, birds and humans), Kounellis always insisted he was a painter first and foremost. Works by Jannis Kounellis can be found in collections such as the Tate Modern, London, the Centre Pompidou, Paris, MoMA, New York, and Guggenheim, New York, to name but a few. Throughout his life, Kounellis was the subject of major retrospectives, including the Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris in 1980, the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago in 1986, and the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía , Madrid, in 1996. Kounellis presented at international exhibitions such as the Paris Biennale in 1967 and in 1969, the Istanbul Biennial in 1993, the Sydney Biennial in 2008, and the Venice Biennale, where his work was exhibited nine times, in 1972, 1974, 1976, 1978, 1980, 1984, 1988, 1993 and 2015.

All images Courtesy  © Almine Rech Gallery

Chiharu Shiota, Me Somewhere Else / Blain|Southern, London

Chiharu Shiota, Me Somewhere Else / Blain|Southern, London

28 Nov 2018 – 19 Jan 2019
Blain|Southern, London

Based in Berlin, Shiota (b. 1972, Osaka, Japan) is best known for her immersive installations, such as The Key in the Hand, with which she represented Japan at the Venice Biennale in 2015. Using thread to ‘draw’ in three dimensions, she weaves intricate networks of yarn into and across spaces. Personal experiences are the starting points for her works, which explore the relationships between the body, memory, life and death.

The titular installation Me Somewhere Else continues Shiota’s exploration of thread as a medium but hereshe utilises the material in a markedly different way, using her fingers to knot red yarn into a vast net.Suspended from the gallery ceiling, the net is a billowing mass which rises from a pair of feet that rest onthe floor below. Cast from the artist’s own feet, their solidity and permanence contrast with the usuallyephemeral nature of her installations. The colour of blood, the red yarn is laden with symbolism, for the artist it alludes to our connectedness to each other, the interior of the body and the complex network of neural connections in the brain.

Complex questions arise around the relationship between the body and the mind; neurons firing andcausing the body to react before a conscious decision been taken has implications for cognisance. With Me Somewhere Else Shiota seeks to examine the idea that human consciousness could exist independently of the body, somewhere beyond – somewhere else. ‘I feel that my body is connected to the universe but is my consciousness as well? When my feet touch the earth, I feel connected to the world, to the universe that is spread like a net of human connections, but if I don’t feel my body anymore where do I go? Where do I go when my body is gone? When my feet do not touch the ground anymore.’

Elsewhere in the exhibition the geometry of new rhomboid sculptures echoes that found within her web installations, where seemingly haphazardly interlaced strands are in fact a network of triangles. Two dimensional canvas works further explore the artist’s use of thread as a medium. Shiota studied painting early in her education but restricted by the use of canvas and paint, she began using her own body in performance pieces, and later began to use thread as a mode for formal and conceptual expression. It allowed her to remove her physical presence yet still address the ideas that are central to her practice. Her canvases can be viewed as this journey coming full circle.

Images > Chiharu Shiota, Me Somewhere Else, 2018. Courtesy the artist and Blain|Southern. Photo Peter Mallet

Gordon Matta-Clark, Works 1970–1978 / David Zwirner / London

Gordon Matta-Clark, Works 1970–1978 / David Zwirner / London

Until 21 Dec 2018
David Zwirner / London

David Zwirner presents an exhibition of works dating from 1970 to 1978 by Gordon Matta-Clark (1943–1978). Marking the first solo presentation of his work at the London gallery, the exhibition will include key examples from the artist’s short but prolific career, including films, photographs, sculptures, and works on paper that illustrate his complex engagement with architecture and the many ways in which he reconfigured the spaces and materials of everyday life.

Gordon Matta-Clark creating Garbage Wall under the Brooklyn Bridge in 1970. © The Estate of Gordon Matta-Clark

A central figure of the downtown New York art scene in the 1970s, Matta-Clark pioneered a radical approach to art making that directly engaged the urban environment and the communities within it. Through his many projects—including large-scale architectural interventions in which he physically cut through buildings slated for demolition—Matta-Clark developed a singular and prodigious oeuvre that critically examined the structures of the built environment. With actions and experimentations across a wide range of media, his work transcended the genres of performance, conceptual, process, and land art, making him one of the most innovative and influential artists of his generation. As Roberta Smith notes, Matta-Clark ‘used his skills to reshape and transform architecture into an art of structural explication and spatial revelation.’

A year after moving back to New York City from Ithaca, New York, where he received a degree from Cornell University’s School of Architecture, Matta-Clark executed the first Garbage Wall (1970), a temporary, stand-alone unit constructed with trash sourced from the streets. The artist intended for this wall to be rebuilt and adapted to different locations by using found garbage from the specific city in which it is made. Emerging out of his observations of, and response to, New York’s infrastructural decline and growing homeless population during the seventies, the work—executed three times during his lifetime, in addition to posthumous iterations—is representative of the artist’s overlapping commitment to art, architecture, activism, and civic engagement that was very much ahead of his time.

Using his architectural training, Matta-Clark engaged with architecture as a sculptural medium, creating new structures from buildings that were often neglected or to be torn down. His activity in the early 1970s included some of his first architectural cuts, among them Claraboya (Skylight) (1971)—represented here by a set of photographs documenting the project from various vantage points. In this project, he carved a square hole from the men’s bathroom on the basement level of the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes in Santiago, Chile, all the way up to the roof, installing mirrors throughout the length of the incision to bring light into the otherwise darkened space. This process of subtraction brought the outside world in and would become one of the artist’s primary working methods, informing significant future projects such as Bronx Floors(1972/1973), Splitting (1974), Bingo (1974), Day’s End (1975), Conical Intersect(1975), Office Baroque (1977), and Circus (1978).

Films and photographs are among the only surviving records of Matta-Clark’s ephemeral projects; they were used by the artist not only for documentation, but also as an essential means to explore some of the major ideas underpinning his practice. On view will be a selection of newly remastered films by Matta-Clark documenting some of his seminal works, including Splitting, in which he made a vertical slice through a suburban home slated for demolition in Englewood, New Jersey.

In 1973, Matta-Clark witnessed a growing graffiti culture in New York; enlivened by the changing urban environment and the proliferation of street art, he began photographing tags throughout the city, selectively hand-colouring some of the resulting prints to bring out the vibrancy of the graffiti. Matta-Clark continued to experiment with colour in his photographs later toward the end of his career, making large-format Cibachrome prints, then a relatively new process made from colour transparencies, which he favoured for its deeply saturated hues. Cutting up and collaging 35-millimetre slides, which he then enlarged, gave the artist the opportunity to express in more detail notions of scale and perspective and to describe the vertiginous instability that often resulted from his architectural cuts.

As with his photographs, Matta-Clark used paper as both a material for drawing and a surface for cutting. His energetic drawings of trees and arrows, some of which will be on view, illustrate his interest in imagining natural alternatives to the urban landscape and relate to his broader interest in creating ‘breathing cities’ in treetops as well as below ground. As Elisabeth Sussman notes, ‘his was a life of intense creative energy directed at changing the surrounding environment, at expanding the imaginative possibilities of the places and the conditions in which we live our lives.’2 With his Cut Drawings, Matta-Clark physically cut through stacks of paper, cardboard, or gesso, miming his signature approach to buildings. Rethinking architecture and urban planning through the medium of paper, as well as films, photographs, sculpture, and performance, Matta-Clark set out to address the needs of communities, and through a systematic process of dismantling, suggest alternatives to the built environment.

1 Roberta Smith, ‘Back in the Bronx: Gordon Matta-Clark, Rogue Sculptor’, The New York Times (January 11, 2018), accessed online.
2 Elisabeth Sussman, ‘The Mind Is Vast and Ever Present’, in Gordon Matta-Clark: You Are the Measure, ed. Elisabeth Sussman. Exh. cat. (New York and New Haven, Connecticut: Whitney Museum of American Art and Yale University Press, 2007), p. 13.

Small is Beautiful: the 36th edition of the annual exhibition at Flowers Gallery in London

Small is Beautiful: the 36th edition of the annual exhibition at Flowers Gallery in London

29 November 2018 – 5 January 2019
Flowers Gallery / London

Flowers Gallery announce the 36th edition of the annual Small is Beautiful exhibition.

Julie Cockburn, Wobble 3, 2018, hand embroidery on found photograph, 17.2cm x 12.2cm. © Julie Cockburn, Courtesy of Flowers Gallery London and New York

Small is Beautiful was first established at Flowers Gallery in 1974, presenting works by selected contemporary artists at a fixed scale, each piece measuring no more than 7 x 9 inches (18 x 23 cm). On display will be works by more than 100 British and international artists, offering a rare opportunity to purchase smaller pieces by well-known names and discover new talents working across a range of media. This year’s edition will include works by celebrated gallery artists, with examples including paintings by Tom Phillips RA and the late abstract painter Jack Smith, dating from the 1970s. Alongside, will be works on paper produced this year by British Pop Artist Derek Boshier (now living and working in the USA), from a series titled ‘Donald Trump Says…’. Artists selected to participate in Small is Beautiful for the first time include Alice Irwin, a recent MA graduate in printmaking from the Royal College of Art, whose sculptures and prints were displayed in a solo exhibition at Yorkshire Sculpture Park earlier this Autumn. Also on view will be works by two artists from Flowers Gallery’s 2018 Artist of the Day programme, including original miniature tapestries with hand embroidery by Charlotte Edey, and photographs by Clare Price, coinciding with her solo exhibition Fragility Spills, at ASC Gallery, London.

Martin Creed / Toast at Hauser & Wirth / London

Martin Creed / Toast at Hauser & Wirth / London

30 Nov 2018 – 9 Feb 2019
Hauser & Wirth / London

Martin Creed has become known for hugely varied work which is by turns uncompromising, entertaining, shocking and beautiful. The exhibition “Toast” at Hauser & Wirth London includes new sculpture, painting, drawing, tapestry, video, live action and music.

Work No. 3071 Peanut Butter On Toast Martin Creed 2018 Patinated bronze, gold 3.8 x 6.5 x 8 cm / 1 1/2 x 2 1/2 x 3 1/8 in © Martin Creed. All Rights Reserved, DACS 2018

Creed’s many films and videos, including most recently ‘Work No. 2811: What the fuck am I doing?’ (2017), ‘Work No. 2656: Understanding’ (2016), and his infamous ‘Work No. 610: Sick Film’ (2006), a film of people being sick, shot elegantly on 35mm film.

Music, talks and theatrical presentations are an important element of Creed’s work. These include ‘Words And Music’, his improvised one-person show which ran at the Edinburgh Festival in 2017, and frequent concerts and recordings – such as the album ‘Thoughts Lined Up’ (Telephone Records 2016) – and several orchestral pieces: ‘Work No. 1375’ (2012), commissioned by London Sinfonietta, and most recently ‘Work No. 3025’ (2018), for String Quartet, commissioned by David Roberts Art Foundation.

The frequently exhibited balloon sculptures, filling half the air in a room, enjoyed by children and adults alike. The first from the series was ‘Work No. 200: Half the air in a given space’ (1998).

Creed’s music for the opening of the London Olympics, ‘Work No. 1197: All the Bells in a Country Rung as Quickly and Loudly as Possible for Three Minutes’ (2012), made with the participation of people country-wide on the morning of the Olympic opening ceremony (even Big Ben joined in).

The much-loved Scotsman Steps in Edinburgh, a public staircase joining two streets made with more than a hundred different types of marble, ‘Work No. 1059’ (2010). There are a number of other Creed marble floors, including at the Jumex Museum, Mexico City ‘Work No. 1051’ (2013) and at Sketch restaurant in London, ‘Work No. 1347’ (2012).

His array of reassuring signs saying EVERYTHING IS GOING TO BE ALRIGHT, currently installed in Edinburgh and London (Tate Modern) UK, Christchurch NZ, Detroit MI, Vancouver BC, and now also in Doha QA.

And his spectacular spinning monuments such as ‘Work No. 1357: MOTHERS’ (2012) (Fort Worth USA) and ‘Work No. 2630: UNDERSTANDING’ (2016) (New York USA), commissioned by Public Art Fund.

‘Work No. 850’ (2008), in which athletes sprinted through Tate Britain every one minute.

‘Work No. 409’, Creed’s popular Singing Lift which goes ‘Ooh’ going up and ‘Aah’ coming down, on show in the UK at The Royal Festival Hall in London, Ikon Gallery in Birmingham, The Fruitmarket Gallery in Edinburgh, and also at Van Abbe Museum, Eindhoven NL.

‘Work No. 1020’ (2009), a dance work commissioned by Sadler’s Wells, which involves classical dancers and music played by Creed and his band.

Images > Installation view, ‘Martin Creed. Toast,’ Hauser & Wirth London, 2018 © Martin Creed. All Rights Reserved, DACS 2018



by Kostas Prapoglou

The provocative personality of the late Chris Burden (1946-2015) was undeniably a landmark of artistic creativity in 1970s America. Engaging himself in all sorts of controversial practices –predominately jeopardising his own physical integrity – he pushed the boundaries of performance on an unprecedented scale. Burden made a name for himself with a succession of performances, two of them being Shoot(1971) and Trans-fixed(1974); during the first enactment the artist had himself shot in the arm by a friend and in the second he appeared lying face up on the roof of a Volkswagen Beetle with his two hands nailed as if he had been crucified on it. Burden soon moved away from his performance pieces and, from as early as the mid-70s, gradually developed a keen interest in producing installation works and establishing a clear reference to engineering and architecture, which he pursuit at Pomona College, Claremont, California. He began employing children’s toys for the construction of a series of large museum-scale sculptures; these considerably increased in size and complexity each time. Such works are Tale of Two Cities(1981), All the Submarines of the United States of America(1987), Fist of Light (1992), Hell Gate(1998) and Metropolis II(2011). In 2008, he created Urban Light, the iconic public sculpture evoking the shape of an ancient Greek temple, permanently installed at the entrance of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and consisting of 202 restored street lamps from Southern California dating from the 1920s and 1930s.

CHRIS BURDEN Porsche with Meteorite, 2013 Restored 1974 Porsche 914, 390 pound meteorite, steel structure © 2018 Chris Burden / licensed by The Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York Courtesy Gagosian

CHRIS BURDEN Porsche with Meteorite, 2013 Restored 1974 Porsche 914, meteorite, and steel 162 x 465 x 162 inches 411.5 x 1181.1 x 411.5 cm © 2018 Chris Burden / licensed by The Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York Photo: Lucy Dawkins Courtesy of Gagosian

Two of Burden’s more recent works are currently on display at the Gagosian Britannia Street galleries in London. Titled Measuredthe exhibition features 1 Ton Crane Truck (2009) and Porsche with Meteorite (2013). Previously exhibited in Extreme Measures, a major retrospective on his oeuvre during 2013-2014 at New York’s New Museum, the two installations – or sculptures, as he would probably prefer to call them – reflect his continuing intentions to expand the perception of space and put to the test the limitations, deficiencies and unexpected properties and strength of all materials used for both works in literal and metaphorical sense.

CHRIS BURDEN Porsche with Meteorite , 2013, Detail Restored 1974 Porsche 914, meteorite, and steel 162 x 465 x 162 inches 411.5 x 1181.1 x 411.5 cm © 2018 Chris Burden / licensed by The Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York Photo: Lucy Dawkins Courtesy of Gagosian

The bright colors and perfect condition of both vehicles – which according to the accompanying exhibition literature have been fully restored utilizing original materials – are redolent of toy or non-real cars. Yet, the direct declaration of the weight of the suspended cast-iron cube (1 TON) and the physical appearance of the hanging iron meteorite (purchased on ebay by the artist himself) in balancing act with the Porsche 914 (weighting 993.4 kg) articulate the imprint of objective reality before the viewer’s eyes. The emerging juxtaposition between the toy-looking vehicles and the almost surreal and unsettling symbiosis with their weighty counterparts blurs the boundaries of materiality. And although at first reading Burden seems to have liberated himself from his older devices of personal danger as means of artistic expression, the two works continue to convey and verbalize just that but in an allusive manner. The sturdiness of both vehicles and heavy weights undeniably create to the viewer a subliminal fear, a threat and a sense of vulnerability. And this is exactly what Burden was driven by in his 70s performances. Back then, he actively opposed in a corporeal and emotional capacity to the political backdrop during the Vietnam war period and simultaneously challenged social power structures and personal responsibility.

CHRIS BURDEN 1 Ton Crane Truck, 2009, Detail Restored 1964 F350 Ford crane truck with 1 ton cast iron weight 168 x 274 x 96 inches 426.7 x 696 x 243.8 cm © 2018 Chris Burden / licensed by The Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York Photo: Lucy Dawkins Courtesy of Gagosian

CHRIS BURDEN 1 Ton Crane Truck, 2009 Restored 1964 F350 Ford crane truck with 1 ton cast iron weight 168 x 274 x 96 inches 426.7 x 696 x 243.8 cm © 2018 Chris Burden / licensed by The Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York Photo: Lucy Dawkins Courtesy of Gagosian

CHRIS BURDEN 1 Ton Crane Truck, 2009 Restored 1964 F350 Ford crane truck with 1 ton cast iron weight 168 x 274 x 69 inches / 426.7 x 696 x 243.8 cm © 2018 Chris Burden / licensed by The Chris Burden Estate and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York Photo: Erich Koyama Courtesy Gagosian

The balancing act of his vehicles is a vibrant metaphor of the equilibrium he has been negotiating with, not only during the start of his career but also in his entire life. Through his visual vocabulary he unstoppably posed questions on issues around power and authority, conformity, moralism, humanism, private and public life. He fantasized of a future world where speed and space would perhaps play a pivotal role in our lives; a world where gravitational rules would not be as significant, yet still important enough to make us remember who we are and where we come from.

Chris Burden, Measured, Gagosian Gallery, Britannia Street, London, UK runs through January 26, 2019.

Kostas Prapoglou

Dr. Kostas Prapoglou is an archaeologist-architect,

contemporary art writer, critic and curator

based in London, UK and Athens, Greece.

Sean Scully Uninsideout at Blain|Southern London

Sean Scully Uninsideout at Blain|Southern London

Sean Scully Uninsideout

3 October — 17 November 2018

Blain|Southern London

Uninsideout, Sean Scully’s first exhibition with Blain|Southern gallery. Featuring large-scale, multi-panel paintings, as well as works on paper, sculpture and a group of his celebrated Landline paintings, the exhibition will offer an overview of the artist’s multi-faceted oeuvre. Rhythm has always been of central importance to Scully, and much of the work in Uninsideout has a palpable musical structure. Rhythm emerges from both his sources of inspiration, such as music and poetry, butalso in his process, visible in the fluid handling of his medium and his own powerful movement as he paints. The geometric structure that characterises his work creates a background rhythm, opening up space for improvisation and new pictorial ideas. Deploying subtly differentiated hues and tones, he creates harmony, and sometimes discord, between the sections of a painting.

Scully grew up in his grandmother’s house in London surrounded by poetry and music, not least the homesick songs of the matriarchs and Irish workers who lodged there. He went on to play in a band and also ran a blues club. He witnessed the explosion of rock ‘n’ roll and was fascinated by its immediacy andability to transcend divisions of language, race, class and politics. This led to his interest in developing anartistic language that was abstract and minimal, yet profoundly human, feeding his belief in a rhythmical structure that binds the world, unconsciously, together. Scully’s Landlines developed from his interest in the meeting points of land, sea and air, the unpredictable rhythm of the ocean and the ever-changing horizon. As this restless artist continues to leap geographicborders and more than ever push against his own boundaries, perhaps his personality is most readily apparent in these works, looking back at us from deep within the swirling currents of these elementalpaintings. And yet the concept of music persists: ‘One stripe’, observes the artist, ‘is a note, many are a chord, all are played by hand.’

Since 2016, Scully has taken to painting on both aluminium and copper. Responding to paint in different ways, each support creates a rhythm and tempo of its own. This choice of polished surface also connects with the artist’s interest in how his art can absorb and reflect meaning from and to the viewer. He states:‘I want my paintings to be obvious, so that when you see them you feel that I have painted something you were thinking yourself, as if I have stolen the thought from you. This is what I mean by empathy’. Sean Scully’s extraordinary achievement will be recognised in 2018 by no less than 10 solo exhibitions at museums and institutions around the world, including Sean Scully: Landline, a major exhibition at the Hirshhorn Museum, Washington D.C. from 13 September. His exhibition at Blain|Southern falls amongst a series of institutional shows across the UK, including his largest-ever presentation of sculptures at Yorkshire Sculpture Park from 29 September.

Images > Sean Scully Uninsideout 2018, installation view BlainSouthern London courtesy the artist and BlainSouthern, Photo Peter Mallet

Modigliani. Tate Modern’s most comprehensive Modigliani exhibition ever held in the UK

Modigliani. Tate Modern’s most comprehensive Modigliani exhibition ever held in the UK

This autumn, Tate Modern stages the most comprehensive Modigliani exhibition ever held in the UK, bringing together a dazzling range of his iconic portraits, sculptures and the largest ever group of nudes to be shown in this country. Although he died tragically young, Amedeo Modigliani (1884–1920) was a ground-breaking artist who pushed the boundaries of the art of his time. Including 100 works – many of them rarely exhibited and nearly 40 of which have never before been shown in the UK – the exhibition re-evaluates this familiar figure, looking afresh at the experimentation that shaped his career and made Modigliani one of the greatest artists of the twentieth century. A section devoted to Modigliani’s nudes, perhaps the best-known and most provocative of the artist’s works, are a major highlight. In these striking canvases Modigliani invented shocking new compositions that modernised figurative painting. His explicit depictions also proved controversial and led to the police censoring his only solo exhibition in his lifetime, at Berthe Weill’s gallery in 1917, on grounds of indecency. This group of 12 nudes is the largest group ever seen in the UK, with paintings including Nude 1917 (Staatsgalerie, Stuttgart) and Reclining Nude c.1919 (Museum of Modern Art, New York).

Reclining Nude
Oil on canvas 
724 x 1165 mm
 Museum of Modern Art, New York

Born in Livorno, Italy and working in Paris from 1906, Modigliani’s career was one of continual evolution. The exhibition begins with the artist’s arrival in Paris, exploring the creative environments and elements of popular culture that were central to his life and work. Inspired by the art of Paul Cézanne, Henri Toulouse-Lautrec and Pablo Picasso, Modigliani began to experiment and develop his own distinctive visual language, seen in early canvases such as Bust of a Young Woman 1908 (Lille Métropole Musée d’Art Moderne, Villeneuve-d’Ascq) and The Beggar of Livorno 1909 (Private Collection). His circle included poets, dealers, writers and musicians, many of whom posed for his portraits including Diego Rivera 1914 (Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen, Düsseldorf), Juan Gris 1915 (Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York) and Jean Cocteau 1916 (The Henry and Rose Pearlman Foundation, Princeton University Art Museum). The exhibition will also reconsider the role of women in Modigliani’s work, including editor and writer Beatrice Hastings, who was not simply the artist’s lover but an important figure in the cultural landscape of the time.

Modigliani in his studio, photograph by Paul Guillaume, c.1915 
© RMN-Grand Palais (musée de l’Orangerie) I Archives Alain Bouret, image Dominique Couto

Modigliani features exceptional examples of the artist’s lesser-known sculpture, bringing together a substantial group of his Heads made before the First World War. Although his interests would soon move on, he spent a short but intense period focusing on carving, influenced by contemporaries and friends including Constantin Brâncuși and Jacob Epstein. Suffering from poor health, Modigliani left Paris in 1918 for an extended period in the South of France. Here he adopted a more Mediterranean colour palette and, instead of his usual metropolitan sitters, he began painting local people, including shopkeepers and children, such as Young Woman of the People 1918 (Los Angeles County Museum of Art) and Boy with a Blue Jacket 1919 (Indianapolis Museum of Art).

Portrait of a Young Woman 1918 Oil paint on canvas 457 x 280 mm Yale University Art Gallery

The exhibition concludes with some of Modigliani’s best-known depictions of his closest circle. Friends and lovers provided him with much-needed financial and emotional support during his turbulent last years while also serving as models. These included his dealer and close friend Léopold Zborowski and his companion Hanka, as well as Jeanne Hébuterne, the mother of Modigliani’s child and one of the most important women in his life. When Modigliani died in 1920 from tubercular meningitis, Jeanne tragically committed suicide. Tate Modern brings together several searching portraits of her from Modgliani’s final years, on loan from international collections such as the Philadelphia Museum of Art and Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, which depict her in a range of guises from young girl to mother.

 Oil paint on canvas 
890 x 1460 mm 
Private Collection

Modigliani is curated by Nancy Ireson, Curator of International Art, Tate Modern and Simonetta Fraquelli, Independent Curator, with Emma Lewis, Assistant Curator. Visitors can also enjoy a new integrated virtual reality experience in the heart of the exhibition. The Ochre Atelier: Modigliani VR Experience invites visitors to step into the studio where the artist lived and worked in the final months of his life. The exhibition is accompanied by a fully illustrated catalogue from Tate Publishing and a series of events in the gallery.

The Little Peasant
Medium Oil paint on canvas
1000 x 645 mm
Tate, presented by Miss Jenny Blaker in memory of Hugh Blaker 1941


Instagram reports: Please check the settings


Privacy Settings
We use cookies to enhance your experience while using our website. If you are using our Services via a browser you can restrict, block or remove cookies through your web browser settings. We also use content and scripts from third parties that may use tracking technologies. You can selectively provide your consent below to allow such third party embeds. For complete information about the cookies we use, data we collect and how we process them, please check our Privacy Policy
Consent to display content from Youtube
Consent to display content from Vimeo
Google Maps
Consent to display content from Google