Exploring space with sculpture

Phyllida Barlow
cul-de-sac
23 February – 23 June 2019
Royal Academy of Arts, London, UK

After nearly two months without posting anything here, I’m finally back! I have a good excuse for being so quiet since January. My son Samuel was born on the 9th February and I have been really busy and enjoying his company since then.

Nevertheless, there’s a good art show now in London that I wanted to share with you. British sculptor Phyllida Barlow has currently an art exhibition at the contemporary galleries of the Royal Academy of Arts, which will be on until the end of the spring. The art berries went to visit it and I’m sharing it with you here, so you don’t miss one of the best art shows in London this season.

The photos you can see from The art berries below have been taken as usual with an iPhone. We’ve interacted with the artworks and bring you an intimate and personal approach of the art pieces we found more interesting.

As we entered the gallery space, we came across two huge sculptures. One of them is a vertical structure formed by various colourful canvases. A playful and intriguing art piece that traps your attention from the very beginning of the exhibition. From the photos below, you can see The art blackberry next to this piece. She appears to be in conversation with a colourful group of individuals.

As we moved along the art show, a new interesting sculpture is revealed. It reminds me of an amphitheatre with a semicircular seating gallery space sustained by multiple beams that go in different directions. You can see how we blend with the sculpture and contribute to this perception.

Finally, a series of pictures are presented below with The art blackberry amid a forest of inclined beams. In this pictures, her fragility is accentuated by the the menacing beams above her.

In February, Barlow created this exhibition that brings her own interpretation of a residential cul-de-sac. By closing the exit door in the final room, Barlow forced the viewer to turn around and revisit each sculpture anew from the other side. She created forests of seemingly precarious structures and uses them to explore the full height of the gallery space with looming beams, blocks and canvases.

Thresholds, the artist has said, are fascinating places, where you pass through from one space to another. Always seeking the surprise, Barlow expects the work to take her into a  journey, rather than her deciding upon that journey.

Her source of inspiration is in the everyday from a farm to an industrial state. Because of that, Barlow uses everyday materials such as plywood, expanding foam, polystyrene, plaster, cement, plastic piping, Polyfilla, tape, etc. and remind us to look at them in a new context with a new light. They are so common in our world that we’ve stopped even seeing them.

Barlow studied at Chelsea College of Art (1960 – 1963) and the Slade School of Art (1963 – 1966). She later taught at both schools and was Professor of Fine Art and Director of Undergraduate Studies at the latter until 2009.


Explorando el espacio con escultura

Phyllida Barlow
Callejón sin salida
23 de febrero – 23 de junio de 2019
Royal Academy of Arts, London, UK

Después de casi dos meses sin publicar nada aquí, ¡por fin estoy de vuelta! Tengo una buena excusa para estar tan callada desde enero. Mi hijo Samuel nació el 9 de febrero y he estado muy liada y disfrutando de su compañía desde entonces.

De cualquier manera, hay una buena exposición de arte ahora en Londres que quería compartir contigo. La escultora británica Phyllida Barlow tiene desde febrero una exposición en las galerías contemporáneas de la Royal Academy of Arts, que estará abierta hasta el final de la primavera. The art berries fuimos a visitarla y la comparto aquí contigo para que no te pierdas una de las mejores muestras de arte en Londres esta temporada.

Las fotos que puedes ver a continuación en The art berries  se han tomado como siempre con un iPhone. Hemos interactuado con las obras de arte y te brindamos un enfoque intimo y personal de las piezas que encontramos más interesantes.

Cuando entramos en el espacio de la galería, nos encontramos con dos esculturas enormes. Una de ellas es una estructura vertical formada por varios lienzos de colores. Una escultura divertida e intrigante que capta tu atención desde el principio de la exposición. En las fotos que capturamos debajo, puedes ver a The art blackberry junto a esta pieza. Parece estar en conversación con un grupo colorido de individuos.

 

A medida que avanzamos en la muestra de arte, aparece una nueva e interesante escultura. Me recuerda a un anfiteatro con un espacio semicircular en la galería de asientos sostenido por múltiples vigas que van en distintas direcciones. Puedes ver como nos mezclamos con la escultura y contribuimos a esta percepción.

Finalmente, a continuación se puede ver una serie de imágenes con The art blackberry en medio de un bosque de vigas inclinadas. En estas imágenes, su fragilidad se ve acentuada por las vigas que hay sobre ella.

En febrero, Barlow creó esta exposición que trae su propia interpretación de un callejón sin salida residencial. Al cerrar la puerta de salida en la sala final, Barlow obligó al espectador a darse la vuelta y volver a visitar cada escultura desde el otro lado. Creó bosques de estructuras aparentemente precarias y las utiliza para explorar la altura completa del espacio de la galería con vigas, bloques y lienzos que parece que se van a caer de un moment a otro.

Los umbrales, ha dicho la artista, son lugares fascinantes, donde se pasa de un espacio a otro. Siempre buscando la sorpresa, Barlow espera que el trabajo la lleve a un viaje, en lugar de que ella decida sobre ese viaje.

Su fuente de inspiración está en lo cotidiano, desde una granja hasta un estado industrial. Debido a eso, Barlow utiliza materiales cotidianos como madera contrachapada, espuma expandida, poliestireno, yeso, cemento, tuberías de plástico, Polyfilla, cinta, etc. y nos recuerdan mirarlos en un nuevo contexto, con una nueva luz. Son tan comunes en nuestro mundo que hemos dejado de verlos.

Barlow estudió en el Chelsea College of Art (1960 – 1963) y en la Slade School of Art (1963 – 1966). Más tarde enseñó en ambas escuelas y fue profesora de Bellas Artes y Directora de Estudios de Pre-grado en esta última hasta el 2009.

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Intricate pretty art pieces

Anni Albers
11 October 2018 – 27 January 2019
Tate Modern, London, UK

We were at Tate Modern last week visiting the art exhibition of Anni Albers (1899-1994), an artist who combined the art of hand-weaving with the language of modern art and what I believe is one the best art shows in London at the moment. Do not miss it, because it’s finishing soon.

Featuring over 350 objects from small-scale pieces and studies to large wall-hangings, jewellery and textiles designed for mass production, the show explores the intersection between art and craft, hand-weaving and machine production, ancient and modern art. It opened ahead of the centenary of the Bauhaus in 2019 and recognises Albers contribution to modern art and design.

I believe that the hand-weaving pieces presented at the art show are really diverse in shape, colour and size. It seems to me that she kept experimenting with design, techniques and materials all her life, yet keeping a very personal style.

Each artwork is like a little treasure made with great care and deep thinking. For instance, she turned everyday objects into precious jewellery pieces, and explored the use of many textures and materials for different and interesting results.

I liked the large wall-hangings with abstract patterns as well as the small-scale pieces that show a great attention to detail. In addition, there’s a central big room in the exhibition that displays various wall-hangings similar to blinds of Japanese inspiration that we decided to use for our photos, as they are good to reflect about the contemporary art space and the interaction of the body within that space.

Born in Berlin at the turn of the century, Annelise Else Frieda Fleischmann became a student at the Bauhaus in 1922, where she met her husband Josef Albers and other key modernist figures like Paul Klee.

The Bauhaus was a German art school that was opened from 1919 to 1933 and had a profound influence upon subsequent developments in art, architecture, graphic design, interior design, industrial design and typography. Although, the Bauhaus aspired to gender equality, women were still discouraged from learning certain disciplines including painting. Anni Albers began weaving by default, but it was in textiles that she found her means of expression, dedicating herself to the medium for the majority of her career. 

With the rise of Nazism and the closure of the Bauhaus, Albers left Germany in 1933 for the USA where she taught at the experimental Black Mountain College for over 15 years. She made frequent visits to Mexico, Chile and Peru, where she bought an extensive collection of ancient Pre-Columbian textiles.  In both her work and her writing, she presents a vastly expanded geography of modern art, drawing on sources from Africa, Asia and the Americas.

Visiting the show was a very stimulating experience and I feeI that it would be so for those of you who like modern art, crafts and design as much as I do.


Piezas de arte intrincadas y bonitas

Anni Albers
11 de octubre de 2018 – 27 de enero de 2019
Tate Modern, Londres, Reino Unido

Estuvimos en Tate Modern la semana pasada visitando la exposición de arte de Anni Albers (1899-1994), una artista que combinó el arte del tejido a mano con el lenguaje del arte moderno y la que en mi opinión es una de los mejores muestras de arte que hay ahora en Londres. No te lo pierdas, porque termina pronto.

Con más de 350 objetos, desde piezas a pequeña escala y estudios hasta grandes tapices, joyas y textiles diseñados para la producción en masa, la muestra explora la intersección entre arte y artesanía, tejido a mano y producción de maquinaria, arte antiguo y moderno. Se inauguró antes del centenario de la Bauhaus en 2019 y reconoce la contribución de Anni Albers al arte y diseño modernos.

Creo que las piezas de tejido a mano presentadas en la muestra de arte son muy diversas en forma, color y tamaño. Me parece que Albers siguió experimentando con el diseño, las técnicas y los materiales durante toda su vida, pero manteniendo un estilo muy personal.

Cada obra de arte es como un pequeño tesoro hecho con gran cuidado y pensamiento profundo. Por ejemplo, convirtió objetos cotidianos en preciosas piezas de joyería, y exploró el uso de muchas texturas y materiales para obtener resultados diferentes e interesantes.

 

Me gustaron los obras mas grandes con diseños abstractos, así como las piezas a pequeña escala que muestran una gran atención al detalle. Además, hay una gran sala central en la exposición que muestra varias obras similares a estores o cortinas de inspiración japonesa que decidimos usar para algunas de nuestras fotos, ya que nos parecieron buenas para reflexionar sobre el espacio contemporáneo y la interacción del cuerpo dentro de ese espacio.

Nacida en Berlín a principios de siglo, Annelise Else Frieda Fleischmann se convirtió en estudiante de la Bauhaus en 1922, donde conoció a su esposo Josef Albers y otras figuras modernistas clave como Paul Klee.

La Bauhaus fue una escuela de arte alemana que se abrió de 1919 a 1933 y tuvo una profunda influencia en los desarrollos posteriores en arte, arquitectura, diseño gráfico, diseño de interiores, diseño industrial y tipografía. Aunque, la Bauhaus aspiraba a la igualdad de genero, las mujeres fueron desanimadas a aprender ciertas disciplinas, incluida la pintura. Anni Albers comenzó a tejer por defecto, pero fue en los textiles donde encontró su medio de expresión, dedicándose a ello durante la mayor parte de su carrera.

Con el auge del nazismo y el cierre de la Bauhaus, Albers abandonó Alemania en 1933 para ir a los Estados Unidos, donde enseñó en el experimental Black Mountain College durante más de 15 años. Hizo visitas frecuentes a México, Chile y Perú, donde compró una extensa colección de textiles antiguos precolombinos. Tanto en su trabajo como en su escritura, presenta una geografía muy amplia del arte moderno, basándose en fuentes de África, Asia y América.

Visitar la exposición fue una experiencia muy estimulante y creo que lo sería para aquellos de vosotros a los que os guste el arte moderno, la artesanía y el diseño tanto como a mi.

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Making air solid

Past art shows: Rachel Whiteread, Tate Britain
12 September 2017 – 24 January 2018

Rachel Whiteread is one of Britain’s leading contemporary artists and my favourite from the YBA group. The latest art exhibition she had at Tate Britain, London, a few months ago revealed the trajectory of her career over three decades from 1988 to date. Time in which she’s been casting the so-called “negative spaces” using a variety of materials such as plaster, resin, rubber, concrete, metal and paper. But what are Whiteread’s “negative spaces”? The air that surrounds our daily experience or the inner world of objects. We find them in our house, in toilet paper rolls, beneath chairs or inside the mattress we sleep on every night. She makes these “negative spaces” solid with her sculptures.

The original idea comes from the US artist Bruce Nauman work titled “A Cast of the Space Under My Chair” (1965-8) that Whiteread referenced in this art exhibition with her “Untitled (One Hundred Spaces)” (1995) showed across the south part of the Duveen galleries at Tate Britain; 100 casts of the underside of chairs in changing shades of coloured resin and with their own flaws. Whiteread, however, has gone further.

Her work ranges in scale from the modest to the monumental and plays with paradoxes such as capturing human wear and experience with geometric white shapes and minimalism.

Tate Britain showed Whiteread’s most important large scale sculptures such as “Untitled (Book Corridors) 1997-8” and “Untitled (Stairs) 2001”, both of which I captured on two photos here, alongside her more intimate works with domestic objects such as tables, boxes or hot water bottles. And then, in the middle of the art show stood “Untitled (Room 101)”: the plaster cast of the BBC office, demolished in 2003, which inspired George Orwell’s torture chamber in Nineteen Eighty-Four.

I first discovered Whiteread as an artist in 2005 and became intrigued with her work. She then populated the Turbine Hall at Tate Modern with a huge labyrinth-like structure entitled “Embankment” made from 14,000 casts of the inside of different boxes. She chose the form of a cardboard box because of its associations with the storage of intimate personal items and to invoke the sense of mystery surrounding ideas of what a sealed box might contain.

Born in London in 1963, Whiteread studied painting at Brighton Polytechnic and sculpture at the Slade School of Fine Art. She was the first woman to win the Turner Prize in 1993 and went on to represent Britain at the 1997 Venice Biennale. She first came to public attention with the unveiling of her first public commission “House” in London’s East End in 1993. A concrete cast of the interior of an entire Victorian terraced house with imprints or doors, windows and fireplaces in great detail. The house only stood for a few months before its demolition, but heralded Whiteread’s life-long project as an artist: fusing domestic narratives with brutalist architecture and minimalism.

Rachel Whiteread exhibition at Tate Britain was curated by Ann Gallagher and Linsey Young. The exhibition was co-organised with the National Gallery of Art, Washington, curated by Molly Donovan, where it will be shown in autumn 2018, and will also tour to the 21er Haus Vienna and the Saint Louis Art Museum.

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