diamond geezer

 Friday, October 23, 2015

Week off (Thursday): yellowbluepink (at the Wellcome Collection) (15 Oct -3 Jan)
Have you explored your own inner consciousness recently? Artist Ann Veronica Janssens invites you to do just that with her her latest installation at the Wellcome Collection on Euston Road. She's taken an unassuming upper gallery and filled it with white mist, billowing from a vent in the corner of the room. And then she's lit it brightly from above, in yellow and blue and pink, and invited you to step inside. There weren't queues on Thursday morning, but admission is only granted via a limited number of lanyards to ensure that the experience doesn't become overcrowded, so don't always expect to get straight in. Having read all the safety instructions you enter via a pair of double doors, and prepare to discover your inner being.

Initially there's nothing to see but colour, a swirling cloud tinted pink, and the effect is highly disorienting. This is of course the plan, with the artist limiting your senses to an unfamiliar few. Expect to stumble into someone, or to think you're going to, before your eyes and ears learn to make vague sense of what's going on. Beyond the pink is yellow, and if you get to the far end of the room blue - the colours don't appear in the same order as the work's title. Occasionally a misty shadow appears in front of you, probably wielding a mobile phone, because what use is a full-on sensory experience these days if it can't be photographically circulated? On my visit a father had brought his one year-old daughter into the melee to experience the art, and who's to say how her consciousness was affected? In my case I learned quite how many small things are floating in my eye, and to revel in this playground of perception.

Week off (Thursday): The Forever Loop (at the Barbican) (9 Oct - 10 Jan)
The Curve gallery at the Barbican has housed some fairly oddball art - rain control, pendulums, Chinese ephemera, loose finches - but its latest offering is something else. Eddie Peake's installation combines sculpture, video and live action to create an experience that's either uncomfortable or erotic, you decide. Visitors are warned to expect nudity and strong language, which isn't usually available for free in Central London, and the set-up bluntly delivers. I thought there'd be a queue, indeed I thought I'd joined it, but it turned out I was in the line for Hamlet returns (and, alas, didn't end up with a spare Cumberbatch). Instead you'll probably get straight in, past the warnings, to what looks initially like a bit of a maze. Inside the rooms to the right are various small works - Eddie appears to favour acrylic and scrim, and has a penchant for plastic bears. You've seen better, to be frank, but it's not every artist who can get away with combining jelly beans, Lemsip and (ahem) used tissues. There's also a video screen displaying the exhibition's central performance, on 30 minute loop, displayed elsewhere so you need not miss the denouement. It's all relatively normal as modern art goes... until the scantily clad roller skater turns up.

She's on a loop too, a choreographed circuit of the space, weaving in and out of the exhibits and spectators as required. But at least she's wearing something, which is more than can be said for the two other live performers who appear only in a pair of trainers. You might meet them along a corridor, or scampering across the upper scaffolding, but most likely they'll be in the big space down the far end. They strut and pulse, occasionally shouting out in sync with the video, and sometimes give you the eye to see how you'll react to full frontal attention. My experience was four-breasted, but I understand the gender mix isn't always the same and you might be faced by lower hanging fruit. Be warned that should your behaviour be deemed to be making the artistes "uncomfortable" you'll be asked to leave - security asked one old man to follow them out while I was there. Goodness knows what the group of Chinese students made of it all, led into Gomorrah still clutching their presidential flags, but they didn't stay long. I held out for the full half hour, to confirm that the whole audiovisual/theatre loop repeats, and will continue to do so daily until the new year, should you fancy an awkwardly in-your-face performance.

Week off (Thursday): Power Stations (at the Newport Street Gallery) (8 Oct -3 Apr)
If you cut enough dead sheep in half, you can afford to open your own art gallery. Damien Hirst opened his earlier this month in a row of converted scenery workshops in the shadow of a railway viaduct in Vauxhall. It takes some finding, indeed I wandered into completely the wrong gallery on Newport Street to begin with, where I was underwhelmed by a large ball of barbed wire in a mostly empty room. But Hurst's edifice is eminently recognisable once you spot it, a sawtooth repository taking up half the street, with a large exterior electronic billboard that may one day entertain passing commuters. A lot of money's clearly gone into this, but admission will always be free, because Damien has no ulterior motive other than to share his collection of other artists' work.

First up is abstract dauber John Hoyland, born Sheffield 1934, and apparently "one of the most important artists of his generation". His speciality is large geometric canvases, a bit Rothkoesque but with brighter colours and generally a few more shapes. They're not quite once-you've-seen-one-you've-seen-them-all, there is a subtle evolution as the years pass, but I barely lasted ten minutes wandering through. Instead I was much more taken by the building itself, with its lofty white walls and angled skylights, and particularly the stairs. Three spiral staircases link the levels and these are objects of twisted beauty, not least the creamy white brick walls and luscious indented timber handrails. I'd say when you prefer the stairs to the artworks there's something amiss, but the gallery has huge potential, and looks to be an alluring addition to our creative capital.

<< click for Newer posts

click for Older Posts >>

click to return to the main page

...or read more in my monthly archives
Jan16  Feb16  Mar16  Apr16  May16  Jun16  Jul16  Aug16  Sep16  Oct16
Jan15  Feb15  Mar15  Apr15  May15  Jun15  Jul15  Aug15  Sep15  Oct15  Nov15  Dec15
Jan14  Feb14  Mar14  Apr14  May14  Jun14  Jul14  Aug14  Sep14  Oct14  Nov14  Dec14
Jan13  Feb13  Mar13  Apr13  May13  Jun13  Jul13  Aug13  Sep13  Oct13  Nov13  Dec13
Jan12  Feb12  Mar12  Apr12  May12  Jun12  Jul12  Aug12  Sep12  Oct12  Nov12  Dec12
Jan11  Feb11  Mar11  Apr11  May11  Jun11  Jul11  Aug11  Sep11  Oct11  Nov11  Dec11
Jan10  Feb10  Mar10  Apr10  May10  Jun10  Jul10  Aug10  Sep10  Oct10  Nov10  Dec10 
Jan09  Feb09  Mar09  Apr09  May09  Jun09  Jul09  Aug09  Sep09  Oct09  Nov09  Dec09
Jan08  Feb08  Mar08  Apr08  May08  Jun08  Jul08  Aug08  Sep08  Oct08  Nov08  Dec08
Jan07  Feb07  Mar07  Apr07  May07  Jun07  Jul07  Aug07  Sep07  Oct07  Nov07  Dec07
Jan06  Feb06  Mar06  Apr06  May06  Jun06  Jul06  Aug06  Sep06  Oct06  Nov06  Dec06
Jan05  Feb05  Mar05  Apr05  May05  Jun05  Jul05  Aug05  Sep05  Oct05  Nov05  Dec05
Jan04  Feb04  Mar04  Apr04  May04  Jun04  Jul04  Aug04  Sep04  Oct04  Nov04  Dec04
Jan03  Feb03  Mar03  Apr03  May03  Jun03  Jul03  Aug03  Sep03  Oct03  Nov03  Dec03
 Jan02  Feb02  Mar02  Apr02  May02  Jun02  Jul02 Aug02  Sep02  Oct02  Nov02  Dec02 

eXTReMe Tracker
jack of diamonds
life viewed from london e3

email    twitter    G+

my flickr photostream

What's on this weekend?
Wed 19th - Sun 23rd October
Bloomsbury Festival
It's free to visit the Foundling Museum this weekend.

twenty blogs
ian visits
blue witch
city metric
the great wen
edith's streets
spitalfields life
in the aquarium
round the island
wanstead meteo
london museums
christopher fowler
ruth's coastal walk
london reconnections
dirty modern scoundrel

quick reference features
Things to do in Outer London
The DG Tour of Britain
Comment Value Hierarchy

read the archive
Oct16  Sep16
Aug16  Jul16  Jun16  May16
Apr16  Mar16  Feb16  Jan16
Dec15  Nov15  Oct15  Sep15
Aug15  Jul15  Jun15  May15
Apr15  Mar15  Feb15  Jan15
Dec14  Nov14  Oct14  Sep14
Aug14  Jul14  Jun14  May14
Apr14  Mar14  Feb14  Jan14
Dec13  Nov13  Oct13  Sep13
Aug13  Jul13  Jun13  May13
Apr13  Mar13  Feb13  Jan13
Dec12  Nov12  Oct12  Sep12
Aug12  Jul12  Jun12  May12
Apr12  Mar12  Feb12  Jan12
Dec11  Nov11  Oct11  Sep11
Aug11  Jul11  Jun11  May11
Apr11  Mar11  Feb11  Jan11
Dec10  Nov10  Oct10  Sep10
Aug10  Jul10  Jun10  May10
Apr10  Mar10  Feb10  Jan10
Dec09  Nov09  Oct09  Sep09
Aug09  Jul09  Jun09  May09
Apr09  Mar09  Feb09  Jan09
Dec08  Nov08  Oct08  Sep08
Aug08  Jul08  Jun08  May08
Apr08  Mar08  Feb08  Jan08
Dec07  Nov07  Oct07  Sep07
Aug07  Jul07  Jun07  May07
Apr07  Mar07  Feb07  Jan07
Dec06  Nov06  Oct06  Sep06
Aug06  Jul06  Jun06  May06
Apr06  Mar06  Feb06  Jan06
Dec05  Nov05  Oct05  Sep05
Aug05  Jul05  Jun05  May05
Apr05  Mar05  Feb05  Jan05
Dec04  Nov04  Oct04  Sep04
Aug04  Jul04  Jun04  May04
Apr04  Mar04  Feb04  Jan04
Dec03  Nov03  Oct03  Sep03
Aug03  Jul03  Jun03  May03
Apr03  Mar03  Feb03  Jan03
Dec02  Nov02  Oct02  Sep02
back to main page

diamond geezer 2015 index
diamond geezer 2014 index
diamond geezer 2013 index
diamond geezer 2012 index
diamond geezer 2011 index
diamond geezer 2010 index
diamond geezer 2009 index
diamond geezer 2008 index
diamond geezer 2007 index
diamond geezer 2006 index
diamond geezer 2005 index
diamond geezer 2004 index
diamond geezer 2003 index
diamond geezer 2002 index

my special London features
a-z of london museums
E3 - local history month
greenwich meridian (N)
greenwich meridian (S)
the real eastenders
london's lost rivers
olympic park 2007
great british roads
oranges & lemons
random boroughs
bow road station
high street 2012
river westbourne
trafalgar square
capital numbers
east london line
lea valley walk
olympics 2005
regent's canal
square routes
silver jubilee
unlost rivers
cube routes
capital ring
river fleet

ten of my favourite posts
the seven ages of blog
my new Z470xi mobile
five equations of blog
the dome of doom
chemical attraction
quality & risk
london 2102
single life
april fool

ten sets of lovely photos
my "most interesting" photos
london 2012 olympic zone
harris and the hebrides
betjeman's metro-land
marking the meridian
tracing the river fleet
london's lost rivers
inside the gherkin
seven sisters

just surfed in?
here's where to find...
diamond geezers
flash mob #1  #2  #3  #4
ben schott's miscellany
london underground
watch with mother
cigarette warnings
digital time delay
wheelie suitcases
war of the worlds
transit of venus
top of the pops
old buckenham
ladybird books
acorn antiques
digital watches
outer hebrides
olympics 2012
school dinners
pet shop boys
west wycombe
bletchley park
george orwell
big breakfast
clapton pond
san francisco
children's tv
east enders
trunk roads
little britain
credit cards
jury service
big brother
jubilee line
number 1s
titan arum
doctor who
blue peter
peter pan
feng shui
leap year
bbc three
vision on
ID cards