News Archive

Private View held by Richard Andrews

Last updated : 8th February 2006

Commencing

David Adjaye - Making Public Buildings features the work of this leading contemporary British architect, with many designs and models shown for the first time. Adjaye's buildings emphasise the experience as much as the functionality of architecture, exploring scale, measure, space, light and material. His aim is to intensify the experience of spaces, through an almost sculptural use of light, colour, tone and materials. This approach to creating spaces, fusing the architectural with the artistic, has led to collaborations with artists including Olafur Eliasson and Chris Ofili. The exhibition is in three sections, following Adjaye's method from design to production. The first, brings together his influences and source material, with images from travels to non-Western cities shown alongside polaroid photographs representing an overview of his previous designs. The second, focuses on 10 major public projects, either realised or currently in development, illustrated with models, sketches and other materials: Idea Store, Chrisp Street, London; Nobel Peace Center, Oslo; Idea Store, Whitechapel, London; Art Pavilions with TBA-21 including Olafur Eliasson at the Venice Biennale; Stephen Lawrence Centre, Deptford, London; Bernie Grant Centre, Tottenham, London; Rivington Place, Shoreditch, London; Museum of Contemporary Art, Denver; Market Hall, Wakefield; and Fairfield Housing, Hackney, London. The third, screens films of completed civic projects, residential work and projects that combine art and architecture. Whitechapel Gallery, London until 26th March.

Carrying The Colours is an opportunity to examine banners created to express pride and protest, from iconic trade union colours and political activists, through those of sporting and religious organisations, to special issue groups. It features a selection from one of the most important collections of trade union banners in the country, providing a chance to see some of these beautiful and striking banners from the glory days of the union movement between the mid 19th and the mid 20th centuries. The exhibition tells the stories behind the banners and explains their background: the organisations who commissioned them, and why were they made; how they helped to forge an identity for the people and the groups who carried them; who made them - including Victorian entrepreneur George Tutill's London factory - and how they did it; and where they were used, at events such as strikes, Whit Walks, Galas, parades, protests and demonstrations of all kinds. As well as the banners themselves, there are photographs, archive film footage, oral history and the inevitable 'interactives' to put the colours into context. The exhibition also reveals the painstaking work of the Textile Conservation Studio in preserving banners from museums all over the country. History Museum Manchester until 29th October.

Martin Kippenberger is the first British show of the remarkably diverse body of work by the maverick German artist. It provides an opportunity to consider Kippenberger both as an artist and as an influence on subsequent generations of British and European artists. Like Andy Warhol, Kippenberger employed the process of art production, drawing on popular culture, art, architecture, music, politics, history, and his own life for inspiration. Often using everyday objects and materials, and creating numbers of multiples, books and ephemera, Kippenberger was working in the face of a perceived 'death of painting', the apparent end of the avant-garde, and the impossibility of producing anything that was authentic or original. A wide variety of works of different media are on show, including around forty paintings, four large installations, ten sculptures, and over fifty works on paper, in addition to one hundred posters. The centrepiece is Kippenberger's large-scale installation 'The Happy End of Franz Kafka's Amerika' comprising an arrangement of around fifty tables and chairs placed on a reconstruction of a green carpeted soccer pitch, which contains examples of classic 20th century furniture, in addition to remnants from previous exhibitions, other artist's work, and flea market acquisitions. Kippenberger's idea of delegating the act of painting to others is demonstrated with 'Lieber Maler, male mir (Dear Painter, Paint for Me)' and 'The Installation der Weißen Bilder (The Installation of The White Paintings)'. Tate Modern until 14th May.

Continuing

Embracing The Exotic: Jacob Epstein And Dora Gordine provides an opportunity to view the work of two contrasting, British based emigre sculptors, Jacob Epstein, and his lesser known female contemporary, Dora Gordine.

Comprising more than 40 sculptures and drawings, alongside ethnographic pieces that inspired them, this exhibition examines how Epstein and Gordine both responded to, and were inspired by, non-western cultures in much of their work, despite their radically different working methods. Epstein, one of the most significant figures in British sculpture in the first half of the twentieth century, was a great admirer of African and Oceanic sculpture. This 'primitive' influence, linked to his revival of the methods of direct carving, and his contact with the Paris artists Brancusi and Modigliani, is obvious in sculptures. It is also apparent in his often-explicit drawings and carvings on themes of fertility and birth. Epstein's preference for models of non-European origin was often controversial during his lifetime, but resulted in some of his most striking pieces. Dora Gordine, a self taught sculptor, designer, collector and society figure, began her career in Paris, where she was encouraged by Maillol, and travelled widely, concentrating from the outset on models of non-European origin. Her first solo exhibition in London included heads of Indian, Chinese, Cingalese, Javanese, Malay, Iranian and Greek models. Highlights here include her bronze bust 'The Chinese Philosopher' and the lifesize 'Javanese Dancer'. This is a rare opportunity to see Gordine's unjustly neglected work. Ben Uri Gallery,108A Boundary Road, London NW8, 020 7604 3991, until 19th March.

The Greatest Fairy Tale: The Amazing Life And Story Of Hans Christian Andersen celebrates the 200th anniversary of the birth one of the world's greatest storytellers, whose repertoire most famously includes The Little Mermaid, The Ugly Duckling and The Emperor's New Clothes. The exhibition is a journey through Andersen's life, fairy tales and artistry, using the magic of his stories. Blending narrative, interactive and media-based installations, it presents the author's life in a sequence of six thematic stages, from childhood to world wide fame, revealing how some of his most famous tales have their origins in his own nature and experiences. The dramatised voice of Hans Christian Andersen provides a guide through the exhibition, as he reflects upon his life and the events that shaped his work and his famous fairy tales. The storyline is supported by a unique collection of personal artefacts and manuscripts - the largest collection of original Andersen objects ever to leave Denmark. The exhibition also includes the Fairy Tale Factory, a series of creative activity stations, where visitors can create their own fairy tales; The Never-Ending Inspiration, a collection of significant illustrations and unique works of art inspired by Andersen's famous fairy stories; and The Legacy of Hans Christian Andersen, an assessment of how his fairy tales continue to be a source of inspiration to others, including film makers, artists and writers. City Art Centre, Edinburgh until 23rd April.

Diann Bauer - bludgeonerator is a new monumental piece by the American born but London resident artist, whose works bring together violent images from a number of diverse cultures to create large scale paintings and installations. The integration of varied visual styles in Bauer's work generates a sense of confusion and dissolution between space, object and subject, suggesting a narrative that seems graspable, but is just out of reach. Combining source material from nineteenth century Japanese woodcuts, European Baroque painting and experimental contemporary architecture, Bauer creates a swirling visually complex representation of space, time and movement. She presents spectacle, and her images - not for the faint hearted - feature Samurai warriors and fire breathing dragons fighting battles against apocalyptic backgrounds of atomic clouds and nuclear explosions, represented in her characteristic colours of tangerine, petrol blue, black and white. This new work comprises a large, elaborately detailed wall drawing, executed on aluminium panels forming a wall that cuts into the gallery space. By blurring the boundaries of where the work ends and the gallery space begins, it plays with expectations of the distinction between the work and the built environment. This is Bauer's first solo show in a publicly funded London gallery. The Showroom, 44 Bonner Road, London E2, 020 8983 4115, until 12th March.

Royal Court Theatre: A Celebration Of Fifty Years features photographs of actors, directors and writers who have enjoyed a close association with the company renowned for its commitment to new writing and for premiering some of the seminal plays of the last fifty years. Among the classic studies are the first artistic director George Devine by Ida Kar, John Osborne by Mark Gerson, Harold Pinter and Glenda Jackson by Bill Brandt, Jonathan Pryce by Snowdon, Arnold Wesker by Cecil Beaton, Joe Orton by Lewis Morley and Sophie Okenedo by Sal Idriss. Alongside are photographs by F H Evans and Alvin Langdon Coburn of some of those who contributed to the history of the Royal Court in earlier years, including Harley Granville Barker and Lillian Mccarthy.

The Royal Ballet At 75 is a companion display marking the anniversary of the formation of Britain's national ballet company. It comprises some of the key figures who shaped the company and influenced British ballet since 1930. These include the founder Ninette de Valios and Lilian Baylis (who provided the company with its first home) by de Valios's brother Gordon Anthony, choreographer Frederick Ashton by Angus McBean, musical director Constant Lambert by Yvonne Gregory, and dancers Margot Fonteyn by Yousuf Karsh, Rudolf Nureyev by Cecil Beaton, Alicia Markova by Dorothy Wilding, Wayne Sleep and Irek Mukhamedov by Alan Bergman, and Darcey Bussell and Jonathan Cope by Jillian Edelstein.

National Portrait Gallery until July.

Moonrise Over Europe: JC Dahl And Romantic Landscape features 'moonlights' by the Norwegian artist Johan Christian Dahl, one of the 19th century's foremost landscapists, his predecessors and contemporaries, including the great German Romantic Caspar David Friedrich. Dahl was fascinated by the theme of moonlight and this exhibition has as its centrepiece his 'Mother and Child by the Sea', a highly atmospheric oil painting showing a woman and her infant looking out over the moonlit water as a small boat carrying the child's father makes its way to the dark and rocky shore. The exhibition sets the painting in context with Dahl's work as a whole, and his development as a painter of 'moonlights', while studying his relationship to Friedrich, whose work has often overshadowed Dahl's. It also explores the fascination with moonlight that came to preoccupy Romantic artists in Europe during the period from the mid 18th to mid 19th centuries, including Friedrich, and such masters of the night as Carl Gustav Carus, Wright of Derby, John Russell, JMW Turner, Jean-Francois Millet, Claude-Joseph Vernet, Honore Daumier and Samuel Palmer, all of whom are represented here. This unusual exhibition offers a unique chance to see some haunting examples of Romantic landscape that have not been shown in Britain before. The Barber Institute of Fine Arts, Birmingham until 23rd April.

Prefabulous London explores how a new wave of modern house types may make living in a box desirable, by showcasing the modules, pods and panels that are transforming perceptions of factory-built living. From pre-assembled, fully-fitted, transport-ready house modules, to flat-pack kit homes from well-known retailers such as the German Hufhaus, modern methods of construction are increasingly being applied by developers to create contemporary, affordable and sustainable homes. The display shows how existing London housing projects from the pioneering Murray Grove to futuristic new concepts of compact-living can remove the stigma surrounding traditional prefabs, and help towards meeting the demand for an additional 32,000 new homes in the capital per year. Starting with 'A for Affordability' through 'M for Modular' to 'Z for Zero defects', the exhibition examines the implications of these innovative methods of housing construction and component manufacture. Through partnerships between manufacturers, architects and housing associations, new methods of construction are maximising design, finishes and performance to reflect higher consumer expectations and greater demands for energy efficiency. The display shows that, from demountable homes providing temporary low cost housing, to liftable, individual roof-top extension modules solving problematic access, the applications of off-site construction are broad, and have the ability to tackle many issues of modern city living. New London Architecture at the Building Centre, London until 18th March.

Concluding

The Regency Country House is the first ever comprehensive survey of the key English country houses of 1800 to 1830. In the mid 20th century, after several decades of neglect and the estimated loss of 1,700 English country houses, the surviving houses of the Regency period took on a new lease of life, partly thanks to Country Life authors such as Christopher Hussey, who played a significant role in the rediscovery and popularisation of the Regency period, a time when the English country house took on many of the qualities and attributes that we still take for granted today. The exhibition is illustrated with material from the Country Life Picture Library. It encompasses the princely palaces and houses associated with the Prince Regent, nobleman's houses such as Tregothnan, and Eastnor Castle, and gentleman's houses such as Southill, Bedfordshire and Sheringham. The work of leading country houses architects is featured, including the Wyatt dynasty, Henry Holland, John Nash, C R Cockerell, Robert Smirke, William Wilkins, Thomas Hopper, Humphry Repton and Sir John Soane. It is through the work of these architects that the exhibition explores major architectural themes of the Regency, from the emergence of the Graeco-Roman style to the Gothic Revival, the Picturesque and Cottage Ornee (rustic buildings of picturesque design) and the influential role of Thomas Hope, whose country house and garden at Deepdene influenced the revival of the Italian style of garden design. Sir John Soane Museum, London until 25th February.

Watercolours By David Hockney - Midsummer: East Yorkshire 2004 comprises a series of 36 watercolours presented as a single work, painted in one creative burst during July and August 2004, around the time of his 67th birthday. For Hockney, they are a return to his roots, capturing the countryside that he first got to know intimately in his childhood and in his teenage years, and are tinged with nostalgia and memories of family and friends no longer living. Painted both plein-air and from the front seat of his car, they celebrate summer through roadside scenes, harvested fields, moorland views, townscapes such as seaside Bridlington, and the jungle garden at Burton Agnes. Their styles vary dramatically - some are executed in minute detail, while others are little more than sketches. From March 2002 through to early 2005 Hockney concentrated almost exclusively on watercolour, a currently unfashionable medium, and one with which he had previously only briefly experimented. However, Hockney determined to explore its possibilities with the same enthusiasm with which he had previously launched into other media. The resulting paintings are hung together on one wall, in six rows of six sheets each, so that the whole series can be apprehended in a 'sweep of vision' as a single work, offering spectators multiple views of a whole, rather than a series of individual subjects. The Gilbert Collection, Somerset House until 19th February.

A Gardener's Labyrinth: Portraits Of People, Plants And Places displays recent photographs by Tessa Traeger and Patrick Kinmonth of over 50 British horticulturalists and their work. The Garden Proposed examines the attitudes and inspirations that inform contemporary garden design, from the gardens of Dan Pearson and Penelope Hobhouse to the new developments in British land art and the work of Ian Hamilton Finlay and Andy Goldsworthy. The Garden Described features leading garden historians and writers, including Anna Pavord, Robin Lane Fox and Roy Strong. The Garden Planted explores the different worlds of plant husbandry, from nurserymen to specialist rose growers, the Chelsea Flower Show expert and the organic gardener including Beth Chatto, Valerie Finnis, Bob Flowerdew and Christopher Lloyd. The Garden Preserved reveals the living heritage of great gardens such as Cawdor Castle (Angelika Cawdor) and Stourhead (John Sales) charting grand restorations and dramatic transformations. The Garden Explored deals with plant scholarship, expedition and exploration, with Christopher Brickell of the Royal Horticultural Society and Tim Smit of the Eden Project. Alongside each portrait is a photograph of the garden most closely associated with the sitter, including Ghillean Prance (Kew Gardens), Charles Jencks (The Garden of Cosmic Speculation), Arabella Lennox-Boyd (Gresgarth Hall), Ann Scott-James (Sissinghurst), Beth Rothschild (Waddesdon Manor) and Graham Stuart Thomas (Mottisfont Rose Garden). The Bowes Museum, Barnard Castle until 19th February.