13 February 2015

A collection of collections

The "Magnificent Obsessions: artist as collector" exhibition is at the Barbican is  till 25 May 2015.

My collection of orange wrappers - or rather this photo of about 7% of the 500+ different designs - was a runner-up in Time Out's competition, and bagged me a pair of tickets to the show -

See 14 other "bizarre" collections at timeout.com.

The exhibition is certainly full of a lot of objects, beautifully arranged - some of which, Howard Hodgkin's collection of Indian paintings, for example, more spaciously than others, such as the "selection of objects from two rooms" of the large house where Hanne Darboven spent half her life (you can only imagine what the other rooms were like).

No photography was allowed (though various photos can be seen here and here and elsewhere on the net) so I took notes -
Among the hasty sketches are a little red suitcase (from Hanne Darboven's collection) like the one I had as a child in Germany; an old photo showing five views of the same person (collection of Martin Parr) and also his Russian space dog figurine, one dog in red the other in green; elephants collected by Peter Blake, who was on the lookout for "something modest" at markets to save him buying the more extravagant stuff; African masks and samurai mouthguards collected by Arman; kimono-clad from a Japanese print collected by Sol LeWitt when he was stationed in Korea (his music scores by Steve Reich and Philip Glass are displayed in pull-out drawers); ceramic hamburgers (of all sizes) collected by Martin Wong - some of his 4000 objects were sent to his mother in embelllished boxes, and Danh Vo, who rescued this collection, has made a gold-leafed tribute box. Let's not forget Pae White's 3000 Vera Neumann textiles, hung in this show like prayer flags, held by tiny magnets on metal wires.
Scarves, calendars, etc etc by Vera Neuman (via)
Martin Wong's shipping boxes (via)
Works by some of the artist-collectors are shown - notably the complete pages from Sol LeWitt's book Autobiography and a chilling assemblage by Arman -
"Autobiography" (left) records LeWitt's objects in  3x3 grids (via)
Arman's "Home Sweet Home" 1960 (via)

1 comment:

irene macwilliam said...

A lost era, the orange papers. I must remember to tell my grandchildren about them. I used to love finding new ones and flattening them out to view them better, all added to the enjoyment of having a lovey fresh orange.
I loved the link you sent to view some of the entries.