Cutting Into January: London Art Exhibitions By Paul Carey- Kent
Perhaps I could warm up by recommending three shows I’m writing about for other places:
* Zavier Ellis' latest choice of recent graduates, Young Gods, is also across two venues: CHARLIE SMITH in the East and the Griffin Gallery in the west (11 Jan - 16 Feb)
* Work (near Kings Cross) features London Fieldworks' fascinating project 'Gustav Metzger Thinks About Nothing' (to 9 Feb)
My strongest recommendation, though, could be to get to Kingston before 2 Feb – having said which, I admit you could wait for the Andy Holden shows lined up for Camden Arts Centre and Anita Zabludowicz in 2013… it's going to be his year.
|Ontographic Study for The Laws of Motion in the Landscape After Art History|
Andy Holden: Laws of Motion in a Cartoon Landscape @ the Stanley Picker Gallery, Knights Park, Kingston upon Thames
To 2 Feb: www.stanleypickergallery.org
To 15 Jan: www.reginagallery.com
|'Are You Sitting Comfortably' and '21st Century Icon'|
Kim Rugg: ‘Are You Sitting Comfortably’ @ Nettie Horn, 17A Riding House Street
To 2 Feb: www.nettiehorn.com
Kim Rugg’s work brings a system-subverting media-savvy inter-connectedness to different techniques of wow-factor detail, whether that’s reorganising a newspaper into text-speak; reversing the map of Britain by degrees; posting letters with their stamps cut into Olympic rings; or using 49 van Gogh postcards to make a life-sized van Gogh. Don’t expect to sit too comfortably, though: the chair in question is covered in news images of violent protest to emphasise, through the history recording medium of tapestry, how all-too-easily they fit into uninvolved lives.
Sherrie Levine @ Simon Lee, 18 Berkeley St – Mayfair
|Heman Chong in collaboration with Anthony Marcellini: INTERVIEW(S)|
Ciprian Muresan & Heman Chong in collaboration with Anthony Marcellini: INTERVIEW(S) @ Wilkinson Gallery, 50-58 Vyner Street
Both halves of this interesting double header feature, appropriately enough, unusual ways of combining things. Downstairs several typically imaginative subversions from the Romanian Ciprian Muresan include the jamming together of two theatrical companies acting different plays on the same stage so that the narratives and texts clash with chaotic and absurd effect. Upstairs Heman Chong and Anthony Marcellini have each made or chosen 100 objects without conferring, then met up to group them across a bank of mirrored tables. Curious connections follow in line with stated methodological principles such as ‘objects can represent words or sentences in a conversation’.
|Tree Line Flare|
|Liverpool Beach Burial|
Michael Stubbs: ‘Untitled (cream)’, 1991,
These effectively contrasted yet linked shows give us Daido Moriyama (born Osaka, 1938) as the dark, war-clouded mirror of American culture in Japan, and in particular of Paris-based American William Klein (born New York, 1928). Both are best known for collections of black and white photographs of cities - but where Klein is extrovert, exuberant, humane, Moriyama is introvert, alienated, nihilistic - and pushes further to explore the formal limits of the photograph as an analogue for troubled states of mind and culture. Even his cherry blossom looks beautifully disturbed.
I wasn’t the biggest fan of the mask paintings through which Beiijing-based Zeng Fanzhi found fame, even if one has fetched over £6m at auction. But I like the psychological landscapes in which tangled forest growth becomes entangled in turn with an over-layer of echoic abstract marks. Here Zeng ups the scale; adds splashier leaf-like cover-marks to his repertoire; and applies the thicketing technique to vastly blown up versions of Durer drawings, the better to emphasise how the whole series may after all come back to masking, to one culture or time seen through another as if throug ha world wide web...
Images courtesy the relevant artists and galleries.