A modern new language in sculpture

New Generation Sculpture
Tate Britain, London, UK
Until 4 November 2018

I’ve been out of London for nearly three weeks in Spain, reason for which I haven’t been very active here. Now I’d like to briefly cover one of the exhibitions on display at Tate Britain and lasting until the beginning of November. It’s the “New Generation Sculpture” display that focuses on a group of artists who in the 1960s embraced a new language to express themselves in sculpture, turning away from conventional techniques of carving and modelling and traditional materials. They changed stone, clay, wood or bronze to start using modern materials, including fibreglass or plastic sheeting. Moreover, their work was mostly abstract rather than figurative.

Many of this artists first came to public attention through “The New Generation” show, a series of exhibitions held at the Whitechapel Gallery in London in the 1960s. The second of these exhibitions featured David Annesley, Michael Bolus, Phillip King, Tim Scott, William Tucker and Isaac Witkin in the spring of 1965. All of them had studied under Anthony Caro at St. Martin’s School of Art, who had encouraged them to pioneer an innovative approach with the use of modern and industrial materials as well as presenting their works directly on the floor, without the use of a plinth.

From all the works displayed on the “New Generation Sculpture” show at Tate Britain, I particularly liked the “Tra-La-La” sculpture from Phillip King (1963), where I blended with the artwork.

King began to use fibreglass in the early 1960s to make coloured sculptures for the new possibilities offered by this material that allowed him to mould new shapes and structures in a completely new manner. Not only that, he was strongly interested in the way colour can communicate with the audience. He selected colour from more than four hundred pieces of paper that he attached to the sculpture to help him choose the final one. That is what I call ‘accuracy’!

See more images on this exhibition here.

A new review on “Russian Dada” coming up soon based on the exhibition currently on show at the Reina Sofia Museum in Madrid, Spain.


Un nuevo lenguaje moderno en escultura
Escultura de nueva generación
Tate Britain, Londres, Reino Unido
Hasta el 4 de noviembre de 2018

He estado fuera de Londres durante casi tres semanas en España, por lo que no he estado muy activa aquí. Me gustaría cubrir brevemente una de las muestras que pueden verse ahora en Tate Britain y que durará hasta principios de noviembre. Es la exposición “New Generation Sculpture” que se enfoca en un grupo de artistas que en la década de 1960 abrazaron un nuevo lenguaje para expresarse en escultura, alejándose de las técnicas convencionales de tallado y modelado y materiales tradicional. Cambiaron piedra, arcilla, madera o bronce para comenzar a usar materiales modernos, como fibra de vidrio o láminas de plástico. Además, su trabajo fue principalmente abstracto en lugar de figurativo.

Muchos de estos artistas llegaron a la atención pública por primera vez a través de la muestra “The New Generation”, una serie de exposiciones que tuvo lugar en la Whitechapel Gallery de Londres en la década de 1960. La segunda de estas exhibiciones contó con la participación de David Annesley, Michael Bolus, Phillip King, Tim Scott, William Tucker e Isaac Witkin en la primavera de 1965. Todos ellos habían estudiado con Anthony Caro en la St. Martin’s School of Art, quien los había alentado a usar un enfoque innovador con el uso de materiales modernos e industriales y la presentación de sus obras directamente en el suelo, sin el uso de un zócalo.

De todas las obras expuestas en Tate Britain en este momento parte de “New Generation Sculpture”, me gustó especialmente la escultura “Tra-La-La” de Phillip King (1963), donde me mezclé con la obra de arte.

King comenzó a usar fibra de vidrio en la década de 1960 para hacer esculturas de colores por las nuevas posibilidades que ofrece este material que le permitieron moldear nuevas formas y estructuras de una manera completamente nueva. No solo eso, estaba muy interesado en la forma en que el color se comunica con la audiencia. Seleccionaba el color de más de cuatrocientas piezas de papel que colgaba en la escultura para ayudarle a elegir el color final. ¡Eso es lo que llamo ‘precisión’!

Vea más imágenes de esta exposición aquí.

Pronto estará disponible en este espacio una nueva crítica sobre “Dada ruso” basada en la exposición que actualmente se exhibe en el Museo Reina Sofía de Madrid, España.

The art berries-Phillip King2

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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