11 May 2012

This week's exhibitions

As there was no lecture at college this Wednesday, the afternoon was ideal for seeing a few exhibitions "downtown". First, Mira Schendel - a Brazilian artist active in the 60s and 70s, "in conversation with" several other artists of the time - Bridget Riley, Roman Opalka, Naum Gabo, Sol LeWitt, Max Bill, Agnes Martin.  The big white painting that on close inspection showed faint numbers turned out to be by Roman Opalka, whose lifelong project was to paint the numbers from one to infinity. (He began in 1965 and reached about 5.5 million before he died last year.) This picture is from earlier in his career - it's quite high contrast, and the numbers are in the 27,000s - the one in the gallery must be one of his last works - 'Detail 5558756 - 5564164'.
In the "Leather Forever" exhibition, which was really a glorified advert for expensive leather goods - albeit handmade, and with craftspeople showing how the work was done - this sample case for a shoe salesman was intriguing -
Walking up Bond Street, we were too late to pop in to Sotheby's to check out the works in the upcoming sale, but did stumble upon a photographic exhibition -
Being print-aware people, we couldn't help noticing the compressed setting of the second paragraph - almost illegible! (click to enlarge) -
"The eight international artists selected for the exhibition resist the normal parameters of the photographic medium by inventing their own cameras, appropriating and re-presenting photographs via an alternate process, subverting the purpose of the camera, wilfully destroying it or creating unique camera-less photograms. In each of their distinctive practices, the artists experiment with the boundaries of photography and subvert the central dominance of the camera." Steven Pippin's shot-in-the-back cameras made some arresting images  (photo from the exhibition review here; read how he did it here) -
Finally (elsewhere), an interesting project by Jamie Shovlin - generating covers for unpublished books -
These are titles in the Fontana Modern Masters series (1970s) that for some reason were scheduled for publication but fell by the wayside. Shovlin set up a classification system for the titles already published, based on arbitrary criteria, and used this to generate the colours for the covers - rather an astonishing concept.

The gallery bookshop had a little book from one of Shovlin's earlier exhibitions - Aggregate - which came home with me and proved very satisfying.

1 comment:

Olga said...

Margaret, thanks for the link to Jamie Shovlin. I remember the system for the Fontana Modern Masters, of which we still have several.