Before flying back to London for Christmas and January, I put together a list of the art shows I MUST see. Below are some of the exhibitions on my must-see list. I decided I would share it, in case the galleries and artists featured in it can inspire others too:
Babes in the Wood, Roger Andersson // Poppy Sebire Gallery
Andersson’s work does not abide by rituals or well-established schemes. He relies on the fundamental organic processes that allow one work or action to lead into another. In his on-going series of works on paper, also called ‘Slaves by Choice’, the colour pigment he uses is rust collected from old craftsman’s tools that, once renovated, he then uses for carving sculptures in wood. The destruction and subsequent creation that takes place mirrors nature’s cycle. The films that are shown alongside the works on paper are recordings of wild animals’ nightly intrusions in the artist’s garden. They eat and destroy his plants – another reminder of the inevitable necessity of destruction in nature’s cycle.
Heman Chong // Wilkinson Gallery
IN COLLABORATION WITH ANTHONY MARCELLINI
Upper Gallery, 24 November 2012 to 27 January 2013
1. Objects can represent words or sentences in a conversation.
2. An object moves from insignificance to significance (and vice-versa) when transferred from one person to another.
3. All objects have power by way of their relationships with other objects, ourselves included.
4. There are other levels of value to objects, on top of the values certain systems attach to it, personal, monetary, symbolic, nostalgic,
which shift and change over time, sometimes quickly and sometimes very slowly.
5. Time slows down and speeds up due to our relationships with objects.
6. Objects tell stories.
7. Stories are also objects.
The two artists have each produced a collection of 100 objects over a period of four months without discussing what these objects are with each other. One week before the exhibition begins they will meet and arrange these objects onto tables with mirrored tops. The exhibition is a reflection of the ways in which two individuals enter into a dialogue with each other. These compositions are entitled Interview(s) and perform the word’s etymology, from the French entrevue, or s’entrevoir: to see each other.
Wind your way through the internal chambers of Gormley’s new work Model when you visit his ambitious new show at the White Cube in London.
Antony Gormley has over the past 30 years revitalised the human form in sculpture through a radical investigation of the body as a place of memory and transformation. “I am interested in the body”, he says, “because it is the place where emotions are most directly registered. When you feel frightened, when you feel excited, happy, depressed somehow the body registers it.”
Mariko Mori: Rebirth // Royal Academy, Burlington Gardens
13 December 2012—17 February 2013
A solo exhibition of work by New York based Japanese artist Mariko Mori, this will be the first major museum exhibition of the artist’s work in London for over 14 years. The exhibition will include some of Mori’s most acclaimed works from the last 11 years, many of which have never been shown in the UK, alongside new works created for the exhibition. Starting and ending with the death and birth of a star, the cycle of life and rebirth is an important theme of the show, which will include photography, works on paper, sound works, as well as sculpture and large scale immersive installations and environments that invite contemplation.
Random International: Rain Room // Barbican
4 October 2012 – 3 March 2013, The Curve
Random International invites you to experience what it’s like to control the rain. Visitors can choose to simply watch the spectacle or find their way carefully through the rain, putting their trust in the work to the test.
More than the technical virtuosity necessary for its success, the piece relies on a sculptural rigour, with the entire Curve transformed by the monumental proportions of this carefully choreographed downpour and the sound of water.
Kate MccGwire // Lure // All Visual Arts
23rd November – 26th January 2013
Tuesday – Saturday 10 – 6 pm
A major solo exhibition from sculptor Kate MccGwire. The title Lure is a dual reference to the ring of feathers used by a falconer to call and command their birds, and to the siren-like call of the work itself. It evokes the combination of our fascination with the iridescent, exotic specimens on display and the desire to look closer in spite of the disquieting atmosphere they create. MccGwire’s work uses the language of nature’s forms to construct impossible creatures, pitting the beauty of a bird in flight against our instinctive revulsion to these unnatural forms in close proximity. Their feathers are both alluring and abject, and appeal to our subjective experience as we confront the breathless, convoluted structures. Her sculptures exist in the periphery between the living and the dead, challenging our perceptions of the authentic and the imaginary.
And of course, if you’ve not seen it yet – on until 6th Jan:
Turner Prize 2012 // Tate Britain
Light Show // Hayward Gallery
Light Show explores the experiential and phenomenal nature of light, bringing together sculptures and installations that use light in different ways. The exhibition showcases artworks created since the 1960s in which light is used to sculpt and shape space, often operating at the edges of perception.
Light Show features works by over 20 artists including:
- David Batchelor – Carlos Cruz-Diez
- Olafur Eliasson – Dan Flavin
- Ceal Floyer – Jenny Holzer
- Ann Veronica Janssens – Anthony McCall
- François Morellet – Iván Navarro
- Katie Paterson – Conrad Shawcross
Light has the power to affect our state of mind as well as alter our sight, and Light Showincludes some of the most visually stimulating artworks created in recent years. It also includes rare works not seen for decades and re-created specially for the Hayward Gallery.
The Marmite Prize for Painting IV
William Kentridge // The Tanks // Tate Modern
South African artist William Kentridge’s eight-channel video installation I am not me, the horse is not mine will be showcased in the UK for the first time in the Tanks at Tate Modern.
Projected simultaneously across the walls of the Tank, each film is played on a continuous loop to create an immersive audio-visual environment, which resists the establishment of a single narrative. Each short film contributes layers to a story that references Russian modernism, from Soviet film of the 1920s and 1930s to the calamitous end of the Russian avant-garde.
Kentridge grew up and continues to live in Johannesburg, where his parents were lawyers involved in the anti-apartheid movement. Informed by this background, Kentridge often addresses the fraught legacy of apartheid and colonialism through innovative use of charcoal drawing, printmaking, collages, stop-animation, film and theatre.