Tasked with writing a review of the Sturtevant show at the Serpentine Gallery, I faced an unusual dilemma: which of the big, broadsheet write-ups to replicate, wholesale? If I were in a damning mood, for instance, I might repeat the Telegraph's Alastair Smart, whose weary assessment (it is "cruel that so many contemporary galleries promote art that appeals more to the expert in post-structuralist French philosophy than to the layman or aesthete") suggests a certain cynicism about the show; were I... [more]
Sound and Vision by Marianne Templeton Collective Actions, Walerian Borowczyk, Andrzej Dłużniewski, Szábolcs Esztényi, Bulat Galeyev, Milan Grygar, Zofia & Oskar Hansen, Zoltán Jeney, Milan Knížák, Grzegorz Kowalski, Zygmunt Krauze, Katalin Ladik, Jan Lenica, Dóra Maurer, Komar & Melamid, Henryk Morel, Vladan Radovanović, Józef Robakowski, Eugeniusz Rudnik, Bogusław Schaeffer, Cezary Szubartowski, László Vidovszky, Krzysztof Wodiczko at Calvert 22
June 26th - August 25th
Sounding the Body Electric is an exhibition of codes, distortions, intermedia translations, ruptured communication systems and altered technologies. Tracing a network of Eastern European avant-garde experimentation that was at times alternately cultivated and censored by state powers, the exhibition offers rare access to a body of audio-visual work that reflects both the anarchic spirit of the era and the socio-political realities of life behind the Iron Curtain.
Certain key innovations from the first half o... [more]
Leandro Erlich: Dalston House is a highly interactive work that lives through the participation of the visitors. As the organizers state, visitors can “scale the walls of a Victorian terraced house without your feet ever leaving the ground.” So if you ever wanted to be Spider-Man, that’s your chance.
Leandro Erlich has been commissioned by the Barbican to create a new installation in Dalston. The work resembles a theater set. Erlich created a detailed facade of a Victorian terraced house – rec... [more]
Liminal Squared is the latest exhibition to fill the walls of White Cube’s Bermondsey gallery, fittingly soloed by explorative artist (environmentally speaking) Julie Mehretu. In her first solo show with Jopling, Mehretu exposits a hefty series of geometric abstract paintings, that are at once intended to be grand in scale, intricate in detail, and bold in their depiction of contemporary urban chaos.
The series, entitled Mogamma, sets out to convey a frenetic energy of gatherings that originate from t... [more]
Gavin Turk: his work is mature and yet provocative; he has made a living as an artist and not sold out; and his ideas retain an urgency from not being overstated. But who is Gavin Turk? This exhibition provides a timely opportunity to unravel one of the forgotten stars of the YBA movement.
Turk’s practice has often revolved around ideas concerning authorship, authenticity and value. ‘The Years’ reminds us that Turk handles these ideas with great intellectual subtlety rather than manufacturing... [more]
Charlotte Jansen: Good to see you the other night at the Catlin Prize. And those pointy jazzy shoes of yours... have a good time?
Philippa Snow: Those jazzy shoes were an absolute nightmare; half a size too small, and the tip came off the heel when I - very sensibly - went straight home after the prize (by which I mean: "went for whiskey sours in a dark bar").
CJ: Talking of dark rooms; I meant to ask you what you were doing crouching down on the floor there when I got in?
PS: I was trying to... [more]
Much has been made of Pádraig Timoney's dexterous avoidance of a signature style. In searching for a foothold from which to tackle FONTWELL HELIX FEELY, Timoney's current solo exhibition at Raven Row, it quickly becomes apparent that this recurring emphasis on the artist's variegated output is not without reason: for to begin with an analysis of any individual work risks drawing conclusions that do not relate to the whole.
The facts of the exhibition are these: there is an emphasis on painting, wit... [more]
Rarely does an artist invoke thoughts of Nothing like Rachel Whiteread (that’s capital N nothing, by the way – the greater idea of nothing, rather than nothing at all. The loudest negative silence within all possible comprehension, effectively; it is the kind of nothing that fills the silences in Pinter plays). Her famous House – made, some might be shocked to recall, in 1993, with the artist herself turning fifty this year – was a screaming grey-block slab of Nothing; her Judenplatz Holocaust Memorial... [more]
When James Edson, owner of Mowlem Street’s Wayward Gallery, was first told about Seba Kurtis’ new book, Kif, little deliberation was needed upon deciding whether or not to show Kurtis’ collection of illuminating photographic work. After reading less than a paragraph from the accompanying book, James became entirely convinced by the heartfelt tale of two migrant friends caught up in the gruelling business of smuggling drugs.
Kif, in what is the Wayward gallery’s first show of 2013, presents a st... [more]
The Museum of Everything’s founder James Brett is perhaps an incongruous addition to the Collector’s Catalogue – since he frowns at the idea of being labeled a collector.
Collector, hoarder, or fanatic – what is so compelling about the Museum’s activity is their novel approach to promoting and presenting artists.
Brett, somewhat of a talismanic leader in this – almost intimidatingly so – has punctured the bubble that is the art world, by representing the underrepresented, but also by circumnavigat... [more]
Serena Korda's work is a very practical sort of magic: evoking elaborate mythologies and belief systems of days past, while remaining firmly in the here and now through a lo-fi materiality and engagement with site and community. Aping the Beast, her current exhibition at Camden Arts Centre brings together three works themed around animals, animism and the power of ritual.
Dormant in the centre of the main gallery, like a B-movie prop in cold storage, is a fifteen-foot Godzilla-inspired monster puppet of... [more]
Associating John Stezaker's work with the movies feels like an obvious fit; his aesthetic, in general, is one of another era of high cinematic splendor – a silver-screen photofit populace, cut-up from Hayworth's hair, and Cary Grant's jawline. The famously-symmetrical are typically used for slashed-up perversions of every golden rule about beauty; all myth about ideal proportion. Even the landscape postcards – the canyons, the rivulets and the mountains – which Stezaker uses are somehow anachron... [more]
Espionage is a fitting subject for Passage, an installation that itself acts as a sort of sleeper agent, adopting the shape and tone of the culture that it seeks to infiltrate: namely, a certain type of cinema, and a certain type of cinema-going experience, both relics in today's brightly-lit digital world.
The project—directed by Jules Wright, with photography by Thomas Zanon-Larcher and score by Billy Cowie—currently resides within the cavernous Boiler House of The Wapping Project, following a... [more]
Staring directly at Vivienne Westwood's vagina made me think of a number of things; mostly, however, it made me think about the difference between Nude and Naked, the nude – one assumes – being somehow formalised, and lacking in sex appeal. The vagina in question forms the centerpiece of Juergen Teller’s retrospective at the ICA, the exuberantly entitled ‘Woo!’
(Hard to imagine any other photographer using such a title; harder, still, to imagine one living up to it with the same dumb-clever pa... [more]
The most fun you can have at an art fair is to pretend you have money, make up an imaginary budget, then promenade snottily around, arousing gallerists, deliberating over what to buy. Some people of course do actually have money – god bless their souls for spending it on art, please keep doing so – and the London Art Fair is good for its unintimidating and unpretentious atmosphere – the Business Design Centre in Angel is so unglamourous, and stands are layered tightly together, so that you don’... [more]
In 1995, Japanese artist Mariko Mori, who had recently completed her degree at the Chelsea College of Art and Design, created a self-portrait. In it she appears with spiky purple hair wearing oversized headphones, white boots, pink tights, a latex kilt, a black top with blue sleeves and futuristic plastic bracelets. She's surrounded by brightly coloured bouncy balls, and is smiling. The work is called Birth of a Star. By portraying herself as a 90s pop queen, Mori commented on an image-driven c... [more]