And now for something completely different…

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2016, acrylic

Inspired by the intense, beautiful, bittersweet and confident Marlene Dumas retrospective at the Tate Modern earlier this year – “The Image as Burden”.

“There is no beauty, if it doesn’t show the terribleness of life.”

M.D

Marlene D

The Painter

Marlene Dumas, 1994

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Alexander Calder: Performing Sculpture

“Above all, art should be fun.” – A.C.

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Alexander Calder: Performing Sculpture

Cheerful, mesmeric – and a little bit like a much needed hug.

I visited Tate Modern’s Calder exhibition for the second time last week – after the first viewing, it was blatantly apparent that I would have to come back. The exhibition has something of a hold on me – similar to the magnetic pull of Rothko’s awe-inspiring Seagram Murals (that room is one of my favourite places in London. Coincidentally, did you know that Mark Rothko was found dead the very same day those paintings reached the Tate Modern?)

But back on track. Calder is an artist I knew little about – mobiles, he is the guy who invented the mobile.This exhibition leads you through his developing practice; as an artist it’s so reassuring to find clear experimentation and progression. In my book, a good art exhibition is one you can fall into, appreciate without shuffling around, your nose in a leaflet or squinting at little labels. Calder was consuming from the start, with his little wire drawings of circus folk and animals; so deceptively simplistic, three-dimensional sculpted in the air – charming and witty.

Continue reading “Alexander Calder: Performing Sculpture”

The Grand Etsy Opening and The Lichtenstein Retrospective

Good afternoon!

Well I have spent far too long house-hunting today with non-existent money…. buy oh, it’s nice to daydream! One day.

Drum roll, please………. I have opened an Etsy shop! Sadly, my work is no longer for sale with New Blood Art, but it’s exciting to know that now I am entirely in charge of the sale of my work, for the time being. And, of course, it means that it is more affordable, without a gallery taking a huge commission.

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Recent sketchbook page…….! Drawn on the train to St Pancras.

Took a trip to the Tate Modern last weekend to go see the Lichtenstein retrospective. Never been too fussed by him, I think partly because in school EVERYONE was copying his work, and I… wanted to be different, being the quirky person I thought I was. But I do appreciate how important he was. And his work does not look interesting reproduced in an A4 book. It needs to be massive, you NEED to see it in person!

It was a really enjoyable exhibition. Felt quite happy, and sort of peaceful floating around, appreciating his paintings for what they were. We didn’t feel the need to read all about him, and indeed there weren’t loads of words everywhere. It was a lovely light-hearted show, and it’s incredible to be able to see the paintings so up-close and from a distance. Some of the colours were amazingly vivid, and, I guess like most art, reproductions just do not do his work justice! In the gift shop, there were a few images I would have liked to buy, but NOT postcard size- I want massive prints that don’t even fit in my flat. Ha. Er yes.

Off to Camden tomorrow to catch up with my little sister, which I’m looking forwards to muchly. Whilst there, gonna go visit Camden Arts Centre who have an exhibition on at the moment of the work of Dorothy Iannone, which looks right up my street……..

Now must go do the bloody washing up. I want to stomp my feet like a teenager and protest angrily… but there’s no-one here to complain to…. Must do less cooking and eat out more. It’s the only solution.

 

Inspiration; ‘A Bigger Splash’ and the oh-so-wonderful Ms Abramovic

It is cold and snowy and we keep getting power cuts. I am attempting to sew, but my fingertips are going numb. Work in progress:

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We took a trip to the Tate Modern at the weekend to see ‘A Bigger Splash‘, which explores the relationship between painting and performance art. It was really inspiring and thought provoking, and I want to make art! I admire performance work, but it is something that I have never done myself (though I have often thought of it. But I’m sure every art student has their OH-MY-GOD!-naked-performance-art-epiphany moment.)

The show started out with a Pollock painting on the floor, underneath a film of him creating it. Excellent. Highlights were a beautifully messy Bruce Nauman video, a Yves Klein naked-women-painting video, and Eleanor Antin’s utterly captivating video of her putting on make-up. It struck a chord with me. Make-up is a peculiar thing. Slightly creeped out/morbidly fascinated by the work of the Vienna Actionists and all the documentation of painty, bloody orgies….

Anyway, it’s a really good exhibition- any exhibition that makes you WANT to get home and work has to be good- go see it! It’s on til April- you have time.

Sticking with performance art, I am reading a wonderful Marina Abramovic book. I love her. How she thinks about things, writes about things, and the themes and concepts she explores… I don’t like all of her work, but as an artist, she is truly admirable. Formidable. Compelling. Human. Honest.

An extract from the book;

“Attempting to escape the body is a dissociative response that produces a mental effect similar to that of self-inflicted pain, since the body in pain is a body without verbal language even though pain’s language is visually expressive. For Abramovic, performance itself provided a means of escape. In response to the question, ‘Who are you?’ Abramovic answered, ‘I don’t know; I learn about myself through work, not through life’.