Friday, 30 September 2011

East end galleries

Started bright and early at the Eagle gallery above the Eagle pub in Farringdon - exhibition of rather wonderful paintings by Zara Matthews, capturing the tranquility and calm of a french room - I particularly liked her technique of painting out of focus views, similar to that you'd see when just waking up in the morning.

Next up was the Cubitt gallery in Islington - an installation by Giulia Piscitelli from Naples.
Inspired by the volcanic island of Nisida, off the coast of Naples and housing a Nato base and juvenile detention centre.

The lines around the walls represent the broken fences of the detention centre and the old mattress was found on the island. I liked the contrast betweeen the fence image in the gallery compared to the real fence outside the gallery.

The mattress close up was something else - perhaps some juvenile drawings ..

Then on to the Victoria Miro gallery - Conrad Shawcross's kinetic installation based on the shape of a soundwave.

He also had some ropes and boxes - he made them with his own rope twisting machines - I want my own rope twisting machines ...

Upstairs was another exhibition by a Brazilian artist Adriano Varejao - lots of references to the bloodshed caused by the Portuguese colonisers, using large scale Portuguese Pallisy ware.

Final visit before lunch was to Ryan Ganders puzzling but intriguing installation, Locked Room Scenario - had some similarities to Mike Nelson's Coral Reef and also Dennis Severs house in Spitalfields. Also was much discussed by the group as to what it all meant.

The entrance to the Locked Room Scenario

Liked this image of the building and first floor resident next to where we had lunch.

In the afternoon, we started with Room Gallery in Haggerston - Rowena Hughes's soft parallels, which combine found architectural images with non-repeating geometric shapes.

Flowers East was next with a fascinating selection of small and large paintings by George Blacklock - entitled Flags, Flying Saucers and Altar Pieces, they use cartoon influenced bold shapes and colours to produce paintings that reward many viewings.

We also had a wander around in the basement where they keep unsold artists' work.

Matt's Gallery in Bow was our penultimate visit - Emma Hart's brilliant installation, To Do.
She uses 20 or so orphaned cameras on tripods as both the installation and as a way of showing video pieces and exploring how people react to having their picture taken.
I also liked the birdwatching references and the way one camera interacted with another across the other side of the room.

Finished off at the Jerwood Space in Bermondsey - will have to go back as packed full of interesting and challenging drawings.

Old notice board by Brendan Lyons - is this a drawing ?

And first prize by Gary Lawrence -

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