Archive for the ‘Art Experiences’ Category

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I had great fun at Tate Modern a couple of days ago, courtesy of Robert Morris and Bodyspacemotionthings. The interactive installation, which is essentially a playground made out of plywood, rubber and ropes, first opened in 1971, only to be closed four days later because the crowd went a bit bonkers. This time round, Tate has made some health and safety adjustments, so I didn’t see anyone bounce off the walls or get a splinter in the bum.

It was 5pm. The Turbine Hall was filled with a few children, and a lot of adults. I watched a man in an expensive suit proudly make his way along the balancing beam. French tourists queued up to climb the walls. Everyone was giggling at themselves and each other. Even the gallery assistants seemed more relaxed than normal.

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My friend Gabi was a willing volunteer


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It is possibly the least thought-provoking work to be installed in the Turbine Hall so far, but who’s to say that’s a bad thing?

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I’ve been meaning to write about this site, ArtBabble, for a while now. It offers a collection of high definition videos dedicated to art and artists, from interviews and artworks to talks and documentaries. This is how they sum it up: 

What is ArtBabble?

noun; verb (used without object) -bled, -bling

1. free flowing conversation, about art, for anyone.

2. a place where everyone is invited to join an open, ongoing discussion – no art degree required.

Here is an example of the kind of video they host:

What happens when five artists come one of the world’s largest libraries in search of inspiration for their next project? Hosted by Grace Bonney of the Design*Sponge blog, “Design by the Book” follows a glassblower, letterpress printer, ceramicist, pattern designer, and graphic designer as they uncover hidden treasures in The New York Public Library and then return to their studios ready to design… by the book. The artists are: Lorena Barrezueta, Rebecca Kutys, Mike Perry, John Pomp and Julia Rothman. Special guest Isaac Mizrahi will joins us in Episode 2 to share his sources of inspiration.

Unfortunately, it is predominently American art and artists. The closest thing we have, for now, is Tate Shots.

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My new personal project is to find out about interesting artists and art projects through Twitter. Here is a selection so far:

Follow me on Twitter

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one&other header_logoClearly designers of the One & Other (previous post) logo and header expect the “cross section” of people applying to stand on the fourth plinth to include: a woman on a Segway (those two-wheeled, self-balancing electric vehicles), a portly man with a walking stick, a pregnant woman, someone in a wheelchair, and Darth Vader. Oh and Gormley himself (C’mon Antony, admit it – we recognise your silhouette from Event Horizon)one&other header_bg

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Photograph: Oli Scarff/Getty Images

Photograph: Oli Scarff/Getty Images

Antony Gormley has officially opened the application process to members of the public who wish to stand on the fourth plinth of London’s Trafalgar Square, as part of his new artwork One & Other.

Every hour, 24 hours a day, for 100 days without a break, 2,400 different people will be able to occupy the plinth, and do whatever they like on it, as long as it’s legal.

“This is about, in some way, challenging the idea that only some people, people who are heroes or have served for their country, have the right to occupy plinths,” says Gormley.

According to the Guardian, 22,000 people have registered their interest so far. Which begs the question, what will people do with their hour as a living statue?

There will be the piss-takers; the dressing up enthusiasts; those who see it as a platform for showing off singing, acting or clowning talents; the campaigners; and, probably, a great deal of normal people who get up there with a book or an iPod, and simply wait it out, keen to simply become part of London’s artistic landscape for a while. At least, I hope that is the case.

But most, if not all, media coverage of the event will be given over to the outrageous: the nearly naked, the crazy, those with an incredible story to tell, and many other moments that are impossible to predict. It will be interesting to see if it really does represent a cross section of British society.

Antony Gormley’s One & Other will replace Thomas Schütte’s sculpture Model for a Hotel on 6 July 2009, and will be broadcast live on oneandother.co.uk and on the Sky Arts website.

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Just found out that if you (like me) missed the Rothko exhibition at Tate Modern, you can take a virtual panoramic tour online, HERE. It works relatively well for Rothko’s paintings, because they don’t require up-close study. On the other hand, you don’t get a sense of the atmosphere of his work. It’s a bit like glancing at a line of Rothko postcards in the Tate shop.

Mark Rothko at Tate Modern

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Secret Wars at Village Underground, London 01Bearded line-drawing geeks went head-to-head with slick freestyle graffiti artists at Village Underground, east London, last night.

Two teams of five artists were given an hour and a half in which to cover their half of a huge white board in Cuba-themed graffiti. They had pens and paints at their disposal, but no aerosol cans.

Team one, Intercity, were dressed in white overalls, and spent the first 10 minutes using a piece of crayon on a string to mark out three circles, which they filled in to make one red and one smaller gold ring. They then spent the rest of their time doodling all over it.

One of the Intercity boys said to me as he looked up at the board: “I’m used to working on A4… this is a bit bigger.”

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Team two, Monorex, split off as soon as the timer started. Pen to paper, they drew quickly and confidently: Big, bold outlines. Straight away, it began to look like graffiti you would see on trains in Naples or New York. They worked in from the corners and, after a while, a scene began to take shape.

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At first, I was behind Monorex all the way. They knew exactly what they were doing, and they did it with style. But slowly, Intercity’s charm won me over. Their doodles strongly resembled Glaswegian artist David Shrigley’s. Dotted all over the place were little quips, like “Banksy is my mum,” and, “Don’t tell them how 1990’s graffiti is”.

Plus they made the crowd move back at the end so they could throw paint balloons at their finished designs. They didn’t win, but they certainly got the most laughs and made the most amount of mess. And that’s got to count for something, doesn’t it?

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Village Underground, 54 Holywell Lane, London EC2

Listen to the Secret Wars podcast:

Download Secret Wars.mp3

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