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Mammoths: Ice Age Giants - Natural History Museum

Exhibition preview

MAMMOTHS: Ice Age Giants is the Natural History Museum’s summer exhibition for 2014. Suitable for all the family, it will be on display from May 23 to September 7.

Visitors will start their exhibition journey in an ancient time when mammoths roamed the land. They will find out about the latest research into extinction and the conservation of their precious cousin, the elephant.

As well as some of the best-known species, including the infamous woolly mammoth, the spiral-tusked Columbian mammoth and their island-dwelling relative, the dwarf mammoth, visitors will also discover prehistoric giants such as the mastodon, the fearsome sabre-tooth cat and the giant short-faced bear.

They will be able to explore their environment and find out not only how they behaved but also how they evolved.

Visitors will also be able to imagine life as a mammoth: test their skill at tusk jousting, trunk swinging and feel the weight of food these beasts consumed every day – equivalent to 230 bags of sugar.

Huge life-size models, fossils, skeletons and the most complete woolly mammoth ever found will also be on display.

Natural History Museum, Cromwell Road, London, SW7 5BD

Tel: +44 (0)20 7942 5000

Website: www.nhm.ac.uk/

Free Range art, design and fashion show 2014

Event preview

THE first glimpse of summer heralds the return of east London institution and the UK’s largest graduate art, design & fashion show, Free Range.

For 2014 and its fourteenth edition, Free Range will once again take over The Old Truman Brewery on London’s Brick Lane to showcase a vast array of work from talented young creatives.

Over seven weeks, a hundred courses and 3000 students will exhibit their work across five disciplines: Design; Fashion; Photography; Art; Interiors and Architecture.

The sheer scale of Free Range in both the scope of the work on display and visitor numbers – the exhibition expects to attract in excess of 100,000 people this year – puts it firmly on a par with the major international art fairs. And Free Range 2014 promises to be bigger and better than all previous years.

Under the guidance of creative director and founder, Tamsin O’Hanlon, Free Range continues to develop year on year and has become a crucial part of London’s cultural calendar as well as an authoritative identifier and supporter of tomorrow’s best creative talent.

The show attracts a wealth of participating UK universities and art colleges, providing exhibiting talent with a prominent platform for their work.

Building on previous years, Interior Educators will be expanding their exhibition space within Free Range to provide a larger forum for debate and exchange of ideas on the current practice and education of Interior Design.

Exhibitors from the different disciplines will also be curating events during their exhibitions, ensuring that Free Range remains as fresh and exciting as always for graduates and visitors alike.

Free Range will continue its on-going portfolio website as a platform for displaying the work of participating and former exhibitors (www.free-range.org.uk).

The exhibitions are free and open to the public (but catwalk fashion shows are by invitation only).

Dates: May 29 to July 14, 2014.

Times: Friday to Sunday, 10am – 7pm; Monday, 10am – 4pm.

Ely’s Yard, F Block, Old Truman Brewery, 15 Hanbury Street, London, E1 6QR

Henri Matisse: The Cut-Outs - Tate Modern

Exhibition preview

Tate Modern’s major exhibition, Henri Matisse: The Cut-Outs (on display until September 7, 2014), is the most comprehensive exhibition ever devoted to the artist’s paper cut-outs made between 1937 and 1954.

It brings together around 130 works, many seen together for the first time, in a groundbreaking reassessment of Matisse’s colourful and innovative final works. The exhibition opened at Tate Modern on April 17 and will be in cinemas as Matisse Live from June 3, 2014.

Henri-Émile-Benoît Matisse (1869 – 1954) is one of the leading figures of modern art and one of the most significant colourists of all time.

A draughtsman, printmaker, sculptor and painter, his unparalleled cut-outs are among the most significant of any artist’s late works. In a career spanning over half a century, Matisse made a large body of work of which the cut-outs are a brilliant final chapter in his long career.

Some of Matisse’s first cut-outs were made between 1943 and 1947 and were collected together in Jazz, 1947 (Pompidou, Paris), a book of 20 plates. Copies, published by Teriade and featuring a text hand-written by Matisse, are shown alongside the original cut-outs. This is the first time that the Jazz maquettes and the book have been shown together outside France.

Other major cut-outs in the exhibition include Tate’s The Snail, 1953, its sister work Memory of Oceania, 1953 (MoMA, New York) and Large Composition with Masks, 1953 (National Gallery of Art, Washington). A photograph of Matisse’s studio reveals that these works were initially conceived as a unified whole. This is the first time these three large-scale works have been exhibited together for over fifty years.

The show includes the largest number of Matisse’s Blue Nudes ever exhibited together, including the most significant of the group Blue Nude I, 1952 (Beyeler Foundation, Basel). The works illustrate Matisse’s renewed interest in the figure.

When ill health prevented Matisse from painting, he began to cut into painted paper with scissors to make maquettes for commissions, from books and stained glass window designs to tapestries and ceramics.

In the cut-outs, outlines take on sculptural form and painted sheets of paper are infused with the luminosity of stained glass. Using colour, Matisse evokes the convulsive surface of water and the lushness of vegetation. The result reflected both a renewed commitment to form and colour and an inventiveness freshly directed to the status of the work of art.

The exhibition re-examines the cut-outs in terms of the methods and materials that Matisse used, and their double lives, first as contingent and mutable in the studio and ultimately as permanent works through mounting and framing. The exhibition highlights the tensions in the works between finish and process; fine art and decoration; contemplation and utility; and drawing and colour.

Henri Matisse: The Cut-Outs is curated by Nicholas Cullinan, Curator, Modern and Contemporary Art, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York and Nicholas Serota, Director, Tate with Flavia Frigeri, Assistant Curator, Tate; and at the Museum of Modern Art, New York by Jodi Hauptman, Curator, Department of Drawings, and Karl Buchberg, Senior Conservator, with Samantha Friedman, Assistant Curator. It will tour to the Museum of Modern Art from October 14 to February 9, 2015.

A paperback book (pictured) is available from Tate Modern’s gift shop. Fully illustrated in colour throughout, it includes many photographs of Matisse in his studio; some of which are previously unpublished.

Tickets: Adult £18 (without donation £16.30), concession £16 (without donation £14.50).

Opening Times: Daily from 10am to 6pm and until 10pm on Friday and Saturday.

Tate Modern, Bankside, London, SE1 9TG

Website: www.tate.org.uk/visit/tate-modern

Tel: +44 (0)20 7887 8888

Dennis Hopper: The Lost Album - Royal Academy of Arts

 Dennis Hopper Double Standard 1961. Photograph © Dennis Hopper, Courtesy The Hopper Art Trust.

Exhibition preview

AN EXHIBITION entitled Dennis Hopper: The Lost Album will be on display at the Royal Academy of Arts (Burlington Gardens) from June 29 to October 19, 2014.

The exhibition will present more than 400 original photographs taken between 1961 and 1967 by Dennis Hopper, the American actor, film director and artist.

The photographs were personally selected and edited by Hopper for his first major exhibition at the Fort Worth Art Center in Texas in 1970, and the vintage prints were only rediscovered after his death in 2010. This will be the first time that this body of work will be seen in the UK.

Although not formally trained as an artist, Dennis Hopper created paintings and assemblages throughout his career and during the 1960s dedicated himself to taking photographs with a Nikon F camera with a 28mm lens given to him by his future wife, Brooke Hayward.

According to Hopper, his interest in photography began in the late 1950s under the encouragement of James Dean, whom he had worked with on the set of Rebel without a Cause (1955) and Giant (1956).

After living in New York from c. 1957-1961, Hopper returned to Los Angeles where he found himself blacklisted in Hollywood and photography became his main creative outlet. For the next six years he worked obsessively, taking an estimated 18,000 photographs.

Dennis Hopper: The Lost Album presents both a personal visual diary and a document of America’s dynamic social and cultural life in the 1960s.

The photographs move between humour and pathos, the playful and the intimate, the glamorous and the everyday. They are considered spontaneous and poetic, as well as political and sharply observant. Whether Dennis Hopper was in Los Angeles, New York, London, Mexico or Peru, he was interested in a vast range of themes and subjects.

The influential American curator, Walter Hopps, described his photographs as “small movies, still photographs made on the sets and locations of imagined films in progress.”

Hopper took iconic portraits of Paul Newman, Robert Rauschenberg, Andy Warhol, Jane Fonda and many other actors, artists, poets and musicians of his day. He photographed his family and friends and captured countercultural movements that ranged from Free Speech to Hells Angels and Hippie gatherings, taking in figures from the Beat and Peace movements such as Michael McLure and Timothy Leary.

These often playful photographs were counterbalanced by images of tense and volatile events, such as the 1965 march from Selma to Montgomery at the height of the African-American Civil Rights Movement, where he accompanied Martin Luther King.

About his photographs, Hopper said: “I wanted to document something. I wanted to leave something that I thought would be a record of it, whether it was Martin Luther King, the hippies, or whether it was the artist.”

But his photography and his growing contemporary art collection led Hopper to be associated with the Los Angeles art world. Hopper and his artist friends Ed Ruscha, Wallace Berman, Larry Bell and Edward Kienholz gravitated to the influential Ferus Gallery in Los Angeles

Throughout the 1960s, the gallery hosted a series of exhibitions that came to define the nascent West Coast art scene, while also introducing Los Angeles audiences to the work of East Coast Pop artists like Jasper Johns, Rauschenberg and Warhol.

Hopper’s photographs of artists, events, happenings and performances are unique in their intimacy and range of cultural subjects and acted as an important link between the film and art worlds.

When Hopper began to work on the film Easy Rider in 1967 he stopped taking photographs, although he continued to work across the spectrum of visual arts.

However, the vitality and directness of the images taken from 1961-67 and the sense of time and place that they convey during a decade when American society was undergoing extraordinary upheaval, resonated strongly with cultural production of the period.

They certainly informed the visual language of Easy Rider (1969), whose emphasis on realism and a youth-orientated counterculture, signalled the arrival of the New Hollywood Cinema of the 1970s. Excerpts from the film will also be showing within the exhibition, along with The Last Movie (1970).

Hopper’s on-screen performances in films such as Apocalypse Now (1979), Out of the Blue (1980), Blue Velvet (1986) and Colors (1988), as well as his off screen life and persona, made him one of the figures most closely associated with the achievements and failures, as well as the rebellious spirit of the counterculture of the 1960s.

About the photographs

The gelatin-silver vintage prints, both portrait and landscape formats, all have similar dimensions, approximately 24.1 × 16.5 cm (9.5 × 6.5 inches). They also include twenty large-format prints measuring approximately 33 × 22.9 cm (13 × 9 inches). The photographs are mounted onto cardboard and considering they lay undiscovered for 30 years, are in very good condition.

Organisation

The exhibition has been organised by the Royal Academy of Arts, London, in co-operation with The Dennis Hopper Art Trust, and is curated by Petra Giloy-Hirtz, independent Curator.

Publication available in the RA shop

To coincide with the exhibition, Presel have published Dennis Hopper: The Lost Album by Petra Giloy-Hirtz (Hardback £35). With close to 600 illustrations and contributions from Dennis Hopper and Brooke Hayward, the volume presents the most comprehensive account of Hopper’s photography from 1961-67.

Tickets: £10 full price; concessions available; children under 12 and Friends of the RA, free. Available at the RA or online at www.royalacademy.org.uk/. Groups of 10+ are asked to book in advance on 020 7300 8027 or by e-mailing groupbookings@royalacademy.org.uk

Times: Daily from 10am to 6pm (last admission 5.30pm); Fridays until 10pm (last admission 9.30pm.

Royal Academy of Arts, Burlington Gardens, London, W1S 3ES

Tel: 020 7300 8000

BFI Southbank

To coincide with the exhibition, BFI Southbank will present Dennis Hopper: Icon of Oblivion, a season of the artist’s films, throughout July 2014. This retrospective will focus on Hopper’s seminal titles from the 1960s, including his collaborations with Andy Warhol, plus significant films from his later period culminating in the landmark Blue Velvet and Colors. The programme will launch with an In Conversation with Peter Fonda on July 2.

Royal Childhood - Buckingham Palace

Royal Chilhood catalogue

Exhibition preview

THIS year’s exhibition at the Summer Opening of Buckingham Palace – Saturday, July 26 to Sunday, September 28, 2014 – is entitled Royal Childhood.

From well-loved toys and treasured family gifts to tiny childhood outfits, this special exhibition will give an unprecedented glimpse into life as a young member of the royal family growing up at Buckingham Palace.

Spanning more than 250 years, Royal Childhood brings together objects from the Royal Collection, the Royal Archives and the private collections of members of the Royal Family. It will also include previously unseen photographs and film footage.

The exhibition will bring together both family and official gifts presented to royal children, as well as the outfits worn by young princes and princesses.

Also on display will be the spectacular silver-gilt Lily Font, commissioned by Queen Victoria for the christening of her first daughter Princess Victoria in 1841 and used at almost all major royal baptisms since.

A number of The Queen’s childhood toys will also be on display, including a pink tea set in the shape of a rabbit, a set of Knockemdown Ninepins and a wicker pram that the two-year-old Princess Elizabeth enjoyed pushing around the gardens of 145 Piccadilly, her family home until the age of ten.

These will be displayed alongside a range of toys, from jigsaws to train sets, many enjoyed by generations of royal children.

A catalogue (pictured) by Anna Reynolds and Lucy Peter will be available soon.

For more information visit www.royalcollection.org.uk/exhibitions/royal-childhood.

Spring 2014 Decorative Fair

Greta Garbo by Andy Warhol (1928-1987).

Event preview

THIS year’s spring Decorative Antiques & Textiles Fair runs at Battersea Evolution from April 29 to May 4, 2014.

Interior designers and private buyers will descend on the second Decorative Fair of the year, the Spring edition, which features a foyer selling display, ‘Using Textiles as Art’, curated by exhibitor Molly Hogg.

One hundred and forty dealers will be exhibiting from the UK and Europe, showing their latest exciting finds: from antique garden seating and decoration to upholstered furniture, modernist design to traditional fine art, vintage crystal and jewellery to wall lights and mirrors.

Fine and decorative antique English and Continental furniture and accessories are the backbone of the Fair.

‘In the know’ buyers who are regularly seen at the Fair include Sir Paul Smith, Ben de Lisi, Christopher Bailey, Patrick Cox, Howard Hodgkin, Charles Saatchi, Cath Kidston, Alex and Olga Polizzi, Annabel Elliot, Kelly Hoppen, Nicky Haslam, Veere Grenney, John Minshaw, Colefax & Fowler, Anthropologie, Soho House, Hackett and Ralph Lauren Retail.

Amongst a number of new participants at the Spring Fair are: AB Antiquo (by appointment Northants) with ancient Chinese ceramic artefacts; Covelli-Tennant (London) vintage textiles to create bespoke upholstery and cushions; Hayloft Mid Century (Derbyshire) a fine selection of English & Danish post war design; Haynes Fine Art (Broadway, Worcs) the UK’s largest regional art dealer, brings modern & contemporary works.

Luke Honey (London) presents a gent’s retreat; board games, curios & decorative pieces; Morris & Ling (Bristol) with decorative antiques, design, vintage jewellery and objects; No1 Lewes (E Sussex, a Young Gun) decorative antiques for the modern family home, practical pieces pre-1920 and a touch of rustic industrial; Henry Saywell (Lillie Road London) who exhibits under his own name for the first time (formerly as 52 Meters) with 20th century design; and La Maison London, French antique painted and traditional furniture.

For more information, visit www.decorativefair.com/.

Image Info: Greta Garbo by Andy Warhol (1928-1987), a hand signed, colour offset lithograph. In July 1962, Warhol discovered the process of silk screening. This technique uses a specially prepared section of silk as a stencil, allowing one silk-screen to create similar patterns multiple times. He immediately began making paintings of celebrities. Warhol would use this style for the rest of his life. New Exhibitor: Haynes Fine Art.

Times: The Fair opens on Tuesday, April 29 at 12pm and then daily from 11am until Sunday, May 4.

Battersea Evolution, Battersea Park, London, SW11

Vikings Live from the British Museum

Vikings: life and legend

Event preview

AT 7pm on Thursday, April 24, 2014, the British Museum, supported by BP, will present Vikings Live from the British Museum to just under 400 cinemas across the UK.

Vikings Live will offer cinema audiences an exclusive live guided tour of the BP exhibition Vikings: life and legend, the British Museum’s first major exhibition on the Vikings in over 30 years.

Vikings Live will be introduced by the Museum’s Director, Neil MacGregor, and presented by the celebrated television historians, Michael Wood and Bettany Hughes.

Exhibition curator, Gareth Williams, and leading world experts will take cinema audiences through the exhibition, getting up close to objects and exploring the global contacts, ships and swords, burials and beliefs of the Viking Age as well as examining the Vikings’ enduring language and legacy.

The live broadcast will be followed by Viking Adventures from the British Museum, also supported by BP, a pre-recorded cinema event on June 5 for schools and families.

The exhibition and cinema broadcasts focus on the core period of the Viking Age, from the late 8th century to the early 11th century. The extraordinary Viking expansion from the Scandinavian homelands during this era created a cultural network with contacts from the Caspian Sea to the North Atlantic, and from the Arctic Circle to the Mediterranean. Warfare and warrior identity are at the centre of what it meant to be a Viking and contact with other lands was often violent.

Objects include recently excavated skeletons from a mass grave of executed Vikings in Dorset, armour and weapons. But there is also fine jewellery, sculpture and metalwork which was traded as well as raided across the globe.

At the centre of the exhibition and Vikings Live is Roskilde 6, the longest Viking ship ever found (pictured). See also our Vikings: life and legend Gallery.

Her Majesty Margrethe II of Denmark talks about the grandeur of these ships which bore her ancestors Harald Bluetooth and Svein Forkbeard, while Kristiane Straetkvern, conservator at the National Museum of Denmark, will talk about the exciting find, excavation and conservation of the ship timbers found in a Danish harbour.

Renowned yachtsman Robin Knox-Johnston will re-live his transatlantic voyage testing Viking navigation. During the broadcast craftsmen from the National Maritime Museum will construct the prow of a great Viking ship to show what made these vessels so spectacular – built for speed, endurance and shaped for terrifying beauty.

A replica ship will be installed in front of the Museum and as the evening darkens, a Viking burial will start to take shape, culminating in an elaborate theatrical boat burial lit by flaming torches carried by Viking warriors.

The broadcast will also explore how through our languages, our poetry, our names and place names – even our DNA – we can see how many of us are connected across time to the Vikings. With practical demonstrations and stunning close-up photography of the Viking objects in the exhibition, the broadcast of Vikings Live will be a reminder of how the Vikings have shaped our modern lives.

Viking Adventures from the British Museum will be a lively and interactive film which has been designed for a schools and family audience. Schools will be able to visit their local cinemas on Thursday, June 5, 2014, and other dates on demand, and selected cinemas will show Viking Adventures as a family show throughout the summer.

Viking Adventures will be tailor-made for 7-11 year olds keen to discover more about life in the Viking Age. The show will support a broad range of national curriculum Key Stage 2 subjects, including history, geography, English, art and design, design technology and RE.

This cinema event will build on the success of last year’s Pompeii Live for schools and will be presented by CBBC presenter, Ed Petrie, who presented Pompeii Live for schools, and Sonali Shah who presented BBC’s Newsround for five years.

More2Screen has been appointed by the British Museum to distribute Vikings Live as Vikings from the British Museum and Viking Adventures from the British Museum to all international territories excluding the UK and Ireland. More2Screen distributed the British Museum’s first cinema broadcast last year, Pompeii from the British Museum which has so far been screened in over 1,000 cinemas worldwide.

The screenings of Vikings Live will bring the exhibition to a wider audience who are not able to see the exhibition in London and our partnership with More2Screen will extend our audience to the world.

Vikings: life and legend continues at the British Museum until June 22, 2014.

Colin Halliday - En Plein Air - GX Gallery

Summer Hedgerow by Colin Halliday

Exhibition preview

GX Gallery is presenting an exhibition of new works by the landscape painter Colin Halliday and it will be on display from April 26 to May 15, 2014.

Ranging from petite studies to expansive canvases, the paintings on display show a painter whose work has developed over the years, with particular growth in the last few months.

Made across the last year, the works are responses to the landscapes encountered in Derbyshire and around the UK.

From the tree-lined rivers leading to stone walled fields and kingly oaks to the expansive valleys of Cumbria, these are startlingly beautiful canvasses which merge the triumphs of 20th Century abstraction with the splendour of the British Landscape.

Halliday was born and brought up in Carlisle where he studied Foundation in Fine Art and then a BA. He moved to London but is now living in Derbyshire. It was in the wake of his move from the city that he began to focus on landscapes – with a series of work devoted to the surroundings of his Cumbrian studio and the Lake District.

Looking back to earlier urban scenes capturing the city and industry, often compared to that of Turner, was a sign off what was to come – merging a virtuoso handling of paint with an evocative capturing of place.

Like Claude Monet before him, Halliday paints impasto scenes ‘plein air’ – allowing him to deconstruct and reconstruct the original landscapes with increasing confidence. Be it in his brooding storm clouds or light lyrical landscapes, he succeeds in capturing something of the particularity of the depicted place whilst pointing towards something more universal. These are not portraits of a particular scene so much as meditations upon our experience of place in general.

The canvases are alive with a broad range of marks and gestures – our focus drawn between the poetic scenes and the array of marks from which they are rendered, between representation and abstraction. Here we see Halliday processing a broad range influence, from painters like Vincent Van Gogh or Lucian Freud and Edward Seago through to colourists like Samuel John Peploe and Wolf Kahn. These are canvasses alive with visual incidence.

This most recent body of work sees Halliday working on an unprecedented scale and with an increasingly vivid sense of gesture. Pursuing exciting new formats and challenges, the exhibition promises to reveal the excitement that a new generation of painters have to offer the venerable tradition of landscape painting.

Gallery Hours: Monday to Saturday, 9:30am – 6pm.

GX Gallery, 43 Denmark Hill, Camberwell, London, SE5 8RS

Website: www.gxgallery.com/

Senaka Senanayake at Grosvenor Gallery

Lorakeets, 2014, 152 x 152cm. (59 x 59in.)

Exhibition preview

FROM June 19 to July 11, 2014, Grosvenor Gallery is presenting an exhibition featuring works by Sri Lanka’s pre-eminent artist Senaka Senanayake (b.1951).

Senanayake achieved early fame as a child prodigy, whose work was first exhibited in Colombo in the late 1950s. He then held his first international one man show in New York at the age of ten. He continued to paint and as a teenager held numerous exhibitions in Sri Lanka as well as Europe, the USA and Asia.

It was after he received formal training at Yale University, where he studied Art and Architecture, that he decided to dedicate his life to painting. After graduating he moved back to Sri Lanka, where he has since established himself as one of the region’s most important living artists.

His recent work is inspired by the plight of the Sri Lankan rainforests, many of which have been subject to intense deforestation to make way for tea-plantations. Senanayake comments: “My main focus is on the endangered flora and fauna in our rainforests. In 2005 I visited a rainforest in Sri Lanka, which had became my muse for many of my shows”.

Visiting the artist’s house in Colombo it is easy to see from where Senanayake draws inspiration for his wonderfully vibrant canvases. His studio is next to the house in which he grew up, and is surrounded by a lush tropical garden, full of exotic plants which attract colourful birds and iridescent insects.

When discussing his work the artist sayss: “I could have shown the negative aspects of destruction, such as people and animals dying, but I try to do happy, positive paintings.”

One of Senanayake’s objectives is to establish a connection with everyone who encounters his work. “Many times, people walk by a piece of art and don’t respond… I want my paintings to talk. Everyone from a street sweeper to a university professor should be able to relate to my art.”

Each of his canvases takes between 2 – 3 weeks to complete. Layer upon layer of paint is added, creating an incredible depth to the colours and imparting a rich feel to the works which appear to have an almost luminescent quality to them.

The artist’s last show in London was in 1980, at the Upper Grosvenor Gallery. Since then he has held successful exhibitions around the world, most recently in India.

Gallery Hours: Monday to Friday, 9:30am – 5:30pm; Saturdays (by appointment only) 12 – 4pm; Sundays closed.

Grosvenor Gallery, 21 Ryder Street, London, SW1Y 6PX

Tel: +44 (0)20 7484 7979

Website: www.grosvenorgallery.com/

From May 8 to May 30, 2014, Grosvenor Gallery is hosting an exhibition of new paintings by the acclaimed Indian artist TV Santhosh.

Elizabeth Neel - New Painting and Sculpture at Pilar Corrias, London

Elizabeth Neel, Workers Work, 2013 © The artist. Courtesy Pilar Corrias, London.

Exhibition preview

THE People, the Park, the Ornament, an exhibition of new paintings and sculptures by American artist Elizabeth Neel, will be on display at Pilar Corrias, London from May 1 to June 21, 2014.

Visual studies in controlled chaos, the works display Neel’s continued interest in the theme of the psychological undercurrent and friction between the individual and the “landscape,” be it natural, urban, ideological or emotional.

Neel sources anonymous images via the Internet that reflect a ‘specific real world subject matter’. The ‘specific’ that Neel references can range from the texture of a feather, to the luminosity of an x-ray, to the flatness of an evolutionary diagram.

There is an exuberant brutality in the gestural rendering of the work as well as in its dealings with the abjection of nature and death. The intensity of pigments recalls both bodily fluids and manufactured substitutes for natural phenomena.

In this particular group of works, Neel makes use of dominant primary colour by way of calling into question the boundaries between a sign or a model and the substance or conglomeration for which it stands.

In her paintings, shapes hover and move across the surface while pieces of tape, placed and torn away at points of tension, appear to pull the image back onto the canvas, emphasizing location, gravity, and speed. Painterly gestures hint at the linguistic and narrative potential of abstraction.

They act as part of diverse index of marks always visibly present in the work, a language filtered through a series of conditions, contingencies and moods that remark on the recognisable as both abstraction and representation.

Neel’s sculptures examine her concerns with the brutality inherent in existence through a three-dimensional plane, utilising wood, steel, cast objects, clay and colour.

Her interest in the notion of the ‘model’ and the ‘diagram’ here takes the form of a floor sculpture in which routes, relationships, scale, and material refer to the body and the environment in an exploration of what Michel Foucault terms, in his book The Order of Things, as the ‘murmur of analogies’.

Objects attached to an L shaped steel bar imply adornment, punctuation and circuitry. Cast objects such as cherries and a domestic animal skull supply examples of 1:1 scale, while organic shapes, a blue piece of clay, flat black painted plywood cut with a jigsaw and derived from shapes in Neel’s paintings, lie prone and propped up, insisting on their own abstraction and ambiguity of scale.

This sculpture relies on these shifting levels of familiarity to create a set of reverberating correspondences between the objects and the paintings in the exhibition.

Born in 1975, Elizabeth Neel lives and works in New York.

Pilar Corrias, 54 Eastcastle Street, London, W1W 8EF

Website: www.pilarcorrias.com/