Geoff Leong and artist-curator duo Vanya Balogh & Cedric Christie present the exhibition ‘WE COULD NOT AGREE’ which – after climbing down into the bowels of London – is to be found in the 20,000 Sq ft multi storey Q-Park car park beneath Cavendish Square. The exhibition features over 100 artists in the circular depths of this car park sub-level, this is an annual event and a satellite fair which is open to the public for 6 consecutive days during Frieze week. The show features work in the medium of sculpture, film, photography, painting and site specific interventions, including performative talks and live presentations, and both emerging and established artists are on show; the whole thing has a sense of fevered curiosity.
As you walk around the circular car park the exhibition swallows its own tail in the fashion of the Ouroboros, which often symbolises self-reflexivity or cyclicality, especially in the sense of something constantly re-creating itself, an image of the eternal return – in this case the re-creation of art, and of course Frieze week satellite exhibitions – it can also represent the idea of primordial unity – both of which could not be more fitting.
Firstly Birgitta Hosea’s simple yet rather effective ‘shadow puppet 1’ acts as a kind of signifier for the now overlaid history of the basement in which the car park – and exhibition resides. The subterranean history of London in all it’s clichéd Gothic glory is evoked in the theatrical use of the shadow and the cheap Victorian stage trick. It might be a ‘one note’ work; but it is quite aptly site-specific.
Roger Clarke is a sculptor based in London and is a Senior Lecturer in Fine Art at Bath School of Art and Design. The artist has exhibited in the UK, France, the Netherlands, Germany, Italy and USA. Whose sculptures command the space rather effectively. The works are akin to great toy-like clunky coloured ball-joints – reflecting the artist’s fascination for the models and diagrams that have been produced by scientists to represent phenomena that are too large or too small to be seen or too complex to be explained. Simultaneously innocent and insidious; causing the viewer to wonder what they represent – aside from their playful presence.
There were a number of highlights that stood out from the circular crowd; the most particular of which was Salli Yule-Tsingas’s ‘Unfinished Guard Services’, comprised of an installation of individual sculptures and the image of a nude ‘selfie’ with a circular convex mirror in front of it. The work references the famous Jan van Eyck painting, the ‘Arnolfini Portrait’. In the famous painting there is a mirror behind Giovanni Arnolfini and his wife; the mirror reflects two figures in the doorway, one of whom may be the painter himself. With the artist’s car park installation; we have the reflection of the viewer as a component of the work in just the same way. Van Eyck was the first artist AND viewer seen reflected back at himself and ourselves as both viewer and painter; juxtaposed with the self-reflexive nature of the image wherein we attempt to look at a ‘selfie’ and only see ourselves in reflection – all of which occurs in front of an image which was a photo taken by the artist in a mirror. A mature and considered work, and one you wouldn’t expect to find when looking for your car.
The artists exhibiting are: Sarah Sparkes, Sarah Doyle, Charlotte Squire, Calum F Kerr, Miyuki Kasahara, Anne Robinson, Birgitta Hosea, Ashley Scott Fitzgerald, Frog Morris, Rebecca Feiner, Phillip Raymond Goodman, Alice Herrick, Paul Hazelton & Tom Swift, Lindsay Sekulowicz & Sonia Levy, Jeffrey Disastronaut, Aly Helyer, Kate Kotcheff, Maria Teresa Gavazzi, Michal Cole, Tasha Marks:AVM Curiosities, David J Batchelor, KeelerTornero, Vanya Balogh, Martin Sexton, Glenn Fitzy Fitzpatrick, Andie Macario, Jim Racine, Maslen Mehra, IHTGW Continent, Patrick Morrissey & Hanz Hancock, Nadia Ballan, Gzillion Artist, Danny Pockets, Rekha Sameer, Julian Firth, Jude Cowan Montague, Kievan Sarrafan, Tom Estes, Paul Sakoilsky, Steve Smith, Joanna McCormick, Shuby, Susana Sanroman, Lorenzo Belenguer, Greg Tate, Jim Roseveare, Piers Jamson, Sean Worrall, Xiao Yu, Martin Paul Everett, Ray Gange, Spizz Energi, Toni Gallagher, Lucinda Bolton, Victor Velvet, Francesco La Porta & Caballo, Unstoppable Achievers, Oko Oko, Thomas J Ridley, Dan Knight, Urban XXX, Stimulus Ltd, Mark Woods, Stathis Lagoudakis, John Plowman, Michael Petry, Gillian Duffy, Hugo Madureira Starkaberget, Dermot O Brien, Charlie Whinney, Rebecca Scott, Kate Lyddon, Hermione Allsopp, Roberto Ekholm, Paul Eachus, Pascal Rousson, Michael Croft, DJ Roberts, David Fryer, Jake Clark, Tim Mitchell, Alexandre Bianchini, Derek Mainella, Jai Moodie, Tracey Moberly, Amanda Burns, Mark Miller, Megan Pickering, No Name, Caroline Stevenson, Adam Piper, Jess Hurd & Jason Parkinson, Nerys Mathias, Cedric Christie, Dallas Seitz, Isolde Nash, Jessica Bailey, Joseph Turnbull, Bernd Kaiser, Lina Audzeviciute, Goran Chanter, Jack Felgate, Jake Garfield, Joe Nava, Ami Evelyn Hughes, Helmut Kaiser, Georgia Kemball, Melissa Kime, Heath Lowndes, Moe Streel, Kate Thackara, Roger Clarke, Zanne Andrea, Adam Burton, Peter Fillingham, Ben Garrod, Poppy Jackson, Norman Mine, Benjamin Owen, Salli Yule-Tsingas, Anne Deeming, Sellotape Cinema, and Andy Elton.
WE COULD NOT AGREE – Cavendish Square Q Car Park London – until 19 October
Words: Paul Black © Artlyst 2014 Photo courtesy of Artlyst all rights reserved