Jonathan Yeo 2013
Oil on canvas
153cm x 153cm
Photographed by Richard Valencia
Image © Jonathan Yeo 2013
September 11th until January 5th 2014
As part of a comprehensive survey of the work of British artist Jonathan Yeo, an extraordinary six-foot-high portrait of Damien Hirst is to go on display for the first time this September. The work will be shown as part of the National Portrait Gallery's selection of Yeo’s portraits spanning over a decade of sitters from the world of politics, media and the arts.
Painted entirely from life, Yeo portrays Hirst in a chemical dry suit typically used for working with formaldehyde. Framed in a vitrine-style structure, the portrait references some of Hirst’s most iconic works. Yeo comments: "People assume [Damien and I] have completely contrary positions – of tradition and modernity, painting and the physical – however, artists are always interested in other artists, and how and what they achieve in their work. Damien, and his undeniable ongoing impact on the art world, is endlessly fascinating. The pose was intended to reflect ironically his supposed status as dark overlord of the Contemporary Art scene and hopefully some observers will be reminded of Velasquez’s and Bacon's Popes. Ultimately his faint smirk is the giveaway, both that he was a knowing collaborator in the choice of composition, and that his mischievous sense of humour is never far from anything he does."
Of the importance of Yeo's work, Hirst states: “Like Turner strapping himself to the ship’s mast in order to create a true likeness of a storm, Yeo time and time again achieves what should be impossible: creating a true picture, an image or a glimpse, of people we think we know and of those we’ve never met."
Other never-before-seen works included in the exhibition include Yeo’s depiction of actor Kevin Spacey in character as Shakespeare’s Richard III.
Adam Dix - Yesterday's Prophets
15th October to 23rd November 2013
Eleven is pleased to present Adam Dix’s first solo show at the gallery. In this series of works on paper, Dix explores our associations between communication technology and our absorption with it. Focusing on the abundance of communication devices, his work encapsulates the allure for the user to stay in a mode of constant connectivity and how these instruments interrupt and influence our command of the world around us.
The information age is fuelled by the consumption of data, aided by the growth in the advancement of communication technology, where society has created tools that shape the individual and how the individual engages with society as a whole – a ‘Technoculture.’ A system of belief where immediacy, practicality and consumption combined with an unconditional reliance evokes a sense of personalised worship to the device of communication. As counterculture scholar Theodore Roszak describes in his book The Cult Of Information, ‘A public cult prepared to believe that we live in an information age which makes every computer aided device around us, what the relics of the True Cross were in the age of faith – Emblems of Salvation.’ It is this core idea of worshipping the device of communication that traverses the central narrative of Dix’s work.
Yesterday’s Prophets explores the idea of community, custom and ritual as mediated by these communication instruments. He appropriates traits from science fiction, religion and mythology that conjure up the notion of a future’s past, just as the title, Yesterday’s Prophets, simultaneously recalls a past and evokes a future vision. He purposefully maintains an ambiguity of time and place for each image. Although imagined, there is something familiar about the scenes, like a family gathered around a table in Homemade (2012), or a crowd of people assembled in celebration as in Parade the Pilgrim (2011) yet a mode of mass connectivity like a satellite dish or radio tower are elevated to take on totemic qualities. Our own desire to be connected is reflected through depictions of an infatuated society where communication objects are bestowed with an idolised status; unaware of how to physically engage, but knowing it to be a way of connecting.
7th June - 14th September
Mat Collishaw is back at the FaMa Gallery with a solo show entitled PRETERNATURAL. The exhibition presents an important corpus composed of some of the artist’s most recent works as well as the Burning Butterflies series.
The Crystal GazeNo. 5is a three-dimensional image that progressively lights up to show a frozen landscape with a bird trapped in it, but it then reverts to darkness, leaving the spectator with only his own reflection. It is thus a path from light to darkness and vice-versa, inspired by the myth of Orpheus. Collishaw revisits it through the interpretations of Maurice Blanchot, Geoffrey Sirc and Jacques Lacan, and it becomes a symbol of the creative process, capable of compensating for loss – that of Eurydice in the Greek myth, that of reality for Collishaw – through artistic creation.
The previously unpublished series of the Burning Butterflies – of which the FaMa Gallery is showing twenty-five photographs of different sizes – returns to the indissoluble bond that links beauty and destruction with pictures of butterflies whose wings are inexorably devoured by flames. Here the image shows short-lived beauty that is destroyed in a matter of seconds, capturing it forever.
Likewise, part of the Insecticide series, Insecticide28 portrays the remains of a butterfly crushed on a surface, capturing it in an image of troubling beauty. In this case, the picture becomes a sort of petite mort, the representation of an existence that has just ceased to be.
The FaMa exhibitions also features three works from the Venal Muse series, created as a tribute to Baudelaire’s Les Fleurs du Mal, in which the represented flowers – genetically modified, and pitted by scars and sores – appear to be consumed by unstoppable decay that mars their beauty. Through these pictures, once again Collishaw lingers over the allure of beauty and its corruption.
MUSEUM HAUS ESTERS
28 APRIL - 1 SEPTEMBER 2013
After working for a number of years in London with concrete objects, in 1977 Craig-Martin began to formulate a visual vocabulary of everyday things - a project that has continued to this day. The vocabulary consists of outline drawings of objects done from photographs he takes; the artist calls them “pictorial readymades”. This concept addresses the underlying question of how far a depiction of an object actually represents it - and refers back to the critique of the image undertaken by the Belgian artist René Magritte.
Craig-Martin took a decisive step in 1993 when he began to colour in his drawings. Unlike the largely neutral and restricted approach adopted in the outline drawings, in which he merely altered the dimensions, every imaginable freedom was now opened up to him in the choice of colours.
The exhibition consists of a series of seventeen paintings in highly varied formats, which have been devised and painted specially for Haus Esters. They all show everyday objects that can be found in domestic settings - personal articles like a man's shirt, a woman's shoe, a bike helmet, an iPhone - along with objects that are normal items in a home: seats, a lightbulb, a padlock, a soup can. As such, the artist returns Museum Haus Esters to its original function as a residential home. With the presentation of these objects, he allows the viewer to imagine the villa as something living and inhabited. And in a way that extends even beyond the interior of the building into the garden, where Craig-Martin has installed two over-sized transparent sculptures - a fork and a garden gate.
A catalogue will appear during the course of the exhibition (probably early June) which will give a full documentation.
Pitchfork (pink), 2008
Steel, 350 x 56cm
© M. Craig-Martin, courtesy Gagosian Gallery
Installation view Museum Haus Esters, Krefeld 2013
August 10 - October 13th
Gary Miller, 2011
31 x 24 in
Courtesy of the artist and Tanya Bonakdar Gallery, New York
The Bass Museum of Art is proud to present a solo exhibition by London-based artist Mat Collishaw. An artist whose wide-ranging practice includes sculpture, photography, and new media, Collishaw explores dark and subversive subject matter, often dealing with issues that are morally and politically charged. In his photographic series Last Meal on Death Row, Texas, Collishaw utilizes the style Baroque still life painting to portray the final meals requested by inmates on death row. In a fitting juxtaposition, the emotional and psychological gravity of each last meal portrayal resonates with the tradition of still life painting, a genre rife with overtones of mortality, isolation, and decadence. The fact that Collishaw uses inmates from the state of Texas also adds to the political overtones of his work, as Texas has had the highest number of executions since 1976, more than any other state. Interestingly, the act of fulfilling inmates’ requests for final meals in Texas ended in September 2011 after a state legislator’s outcry against the excessiveness of recent meals.
See Mat Collishaw's Last Meal on Death Row with Other Criteria here.
The Whitechapel Gallery are presenting Sarah Lucas first major solo show in London. Bringing together over two decades of sculpture, installation,photography SITUATION explores Lucas's career and her role in British art.
Using everyday materials such as cigarettes, tights, furniture and vegetables, she communicates about gender and sexuality. Referencing Pop Art and Arte Povera whilst addressing the universal concerns of nature and morality. SITUATION will also feature iconic works using inanimate objects to take the shape of bodies including Two Fried Eggs and a Kebab (1992) and Spinster (2000).
The exhibition includes new works called NUDS (2009 – present); stuffed tights are moulded into sculptures suggestive of embracing bodies, their intertwined forms offset by plinths of concrete breeze blocks. Her Loungers (2011) series will also be shown featuring suspended plastic garden chairs, combined with material limbs and buckets. The show expands on Lucas’ year-long project SITUATION in which she constructed a series of sculptural installations in a former office building.
The show will open on 2 October and run untill 15 December 2013
Click here to view the full selection of Sarah Lucas work available through Other Criteria.