News Archive

Private View held by Richard Andrews

Last updated : 7th September 2011

Commencing

Memory Remains: 9/11 Artifacts At Hangar 17 - Francesc Torres marks the 10th anniversary of the world's worst terrorist attack. Following the devastation of the attack on the World Trade Center in New York on September 11th 2001, the recovery effort began, and the 16 acre site underwent the careful and lengthy process of being cleared. A small group of architects and curators began to fill the empty shell of the 80,000 sq ft Hangar 17 at John F Kennedy International Airport with debris and material cleared from the site, transforming it into a storehouse of memories. Spanish-American artist Francesc Torres, commissioned by the National September 11 Memorial & Museum, was granted access to explore inside the hangar, and over a period of 5 weeks, produced an extensive series of photographs reflecting on the emotional power of what remained after 9/11. This exhibition features over 150 projected images, which explore inside the hangar and reflect on the emotional power of what remained, from personal belongings to steel girders distorted by the force of the attacks. In photographs of exceptional sensitivity and insight, Torres has captured both the monumental scale of loss in the wake of the terror attacks, and the excruciating intimacy of personal effects that remain as testaments to those unwittingly caught in the maelstrom of destruction. Alongside the photographs is a section of raw rusted steel over 2m in length from the ruins of the World Trade Center, thought to be the box section of one of the windows. Imperial War Museum, London, until 26th February.

Prince Philip: Celebrating Ninety Years marks the 90th birthday of His Royal Highness Prince Philip. The exhibition brings together photographs, memorabilia, paintings and gifts that illustrate key moments in Prince Phillip's life. It also reflects his many interests, from carriage driving to painting and design, as well as his extensive work as patron or president of 800 organisations, including the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme. The photographs document both private occasions and public appearances, from his birth as the son of a Prince and Princess in pre republican Greece, through subsequent exile in Germany, France and Britain, his navy career, and marriage to the Queen, up to the present day. In addition, there is a wide selection of unusual gifts that Prince Philip has received during his travels all over the world, including a Native American headdress, a silver model of the Royal Yacht Britannia, a chess set representing the Zulu and Ndebele tribes of South Africa, a model of the X-ray Multi Mirror satellite, a French grass hopper wine bottle cooler, a pair of silver spurs from Chilie, a silver cigar box engraved with a map of the Galapagos Islands, a Royal Windsor Horse Show International Driving Grand Prix Trophy and a scale model of his driving carriage, a silver gilt cigarette lighter in the form a an oil refinery storage tank, a model of a Chinese armillary sphere, and many medals and awards. The Drawings Gallery, Windsor Castle, until 22nd January.

The Cost Of Living In Roman And Modern Britain looks at the similarities and differences between the cost of everyday living in Britain about 2,000 years ago and today. The changes are shown through comparing things like wages, property, food, clothing, gambling, entertainment and travel, revealing how much of the average wage was spent on these items both in the past and today. When Britannia was a Roman province around 2,000 years ago, forts and towns were connected by paved roads for the first time, and wider contact with the Roman world brought new produce, goods and ideas to the British household. The Romans may have found it easier than us to own property or see major sporting events and festivals, but food and clothing, which are relatively cheap today, consumed a much higher proportion of the daily wage. The display brings together some of the fascinating finds from Roman Britain, including bronze and bone figurines, gaming counters and dice, evidence of the use of salt and pepper, and coins, with their modern counterparts. Surprisingly, there are many similarities, including a copper-nickel penny of Elizabeth II that looks remarkably like a copper-alloy coin of Roman emperor Hadrian, showing Britannia on the reverse, minted in Rome. British Museum until 15th April.

Continuing

Recording The New: The Architectural Photography Of Bedford Lemere & Co 1870 - 1930 showcases the photography of one of the pioneers of architectural photography in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Employed by a wide range of industrialists, retailers, hoteliers and government departments to capture new buildings in pristine condition, Bedford Lemere & Co's photographs show the work of leading contemporary architects, interior decorators, designers and artists. The display explores Bedford Lemere & Co's extraordinary client list, the evolving role of commercial photography and the lasting social significance of the images. The high quality photographs offer a rare glimpse at late Victorian interiors such as Heal & Son showrooms in 1897, the bar at the North Eastern Station Hotel in 1893 and a host of other 'new' interiors and exteriors. Bedford Lemere & Co photographed a wide variety of buildings including country houses, hospitals, shops, banks, railway stations, cruise liners and, during the First World War, armaments manufacture. The firm's work centred on London, but it received commissions throughout Great Britain and occasionally from abroad. The reputation of the company rested above all on the quality of its work. Its photographers were outstanding technicians with a highly developed visual sense, able to capture the monumentality of a building as well as the minute detail of its decorative scheme. Using large format negatives, they produced images of exceptional quality, depth and sharpness. The size and clarity of the photographs render them as fresh and legible today as when they were first composed. Victoria & Albert Museum until 30th October.

Ben Nicholson: The Intimate Surface Of Modernism provides an opportunity to glimpse the private side of one of the major figures in British modernism. In the 1920s, while Ben Nicholson was married to his first wife, fellow artist Winifred, he spent much of his time living between London and Cumberland. It is largely this early period of Nicholson's life and work that is represented in this exhibition. These are mostly landscape drawings, which belong in the heritage of pastoral art, rather than with his later more abstract paintings and sculpture. This work is grounded with a sense of family and place, includes gifts made to family and friends, which help to connect with Nicholson as a person, rather than just the well known art historical figure. As well as works by Nicholson the display includes paintings by Winifred Nicholson and their maverick friend Alfred Wallis, together with postcards from family holidays. In addition, works such as 'Venice' and 'St Ives' honour Nicholson's more recognised and alternative approach to drawing, which explores new ideas, and refuses to define the term in the traditional way. Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art until 6th November.

Land Girls And Lumber Jills tells the story of the Women's Land Army and Women's Timber Corps, and the vital role they played in feeding the nation and providing timber during both World wars. Both organisations were formed in 1917 to help meet growing demands for home production during the long struggle of the First World War. Women of the Land Army, or 'Land Girls' as they became known, took on all types of agricultural work, from sowing to harvesting, calving to shearing, the hard physical work that until the war had largely been undertaken by men. The Women's Timber Corps or 'Lumber Jills' supplied the wood used for manufacturing, energy production and more. During the Second World War some volunteered while others were conscripted, as by 1941 all women under the age of 60, without children under 14, could be called up for essential war work. This exhibition provides an opportunity to step into their shoes and find out where and how they lived and worked. Objects on display range from recruitment posters and uniforms to working clothes and tools of their various trades. These are brought to life by personal testimonies, audio recordings and period photographs and film footage. In addition, there is material featuring the work of women's land armies amongst the allied countries. National Museum of Costume, Edinburgh, until 31st October.

This is Design examines the impact of design on the modern world, whilst also exploring the consequences of design, and how it shapes daily life. The museum's collection contains pieces ranging from early items of mass manufacture through to cutting edge contemporary design, and includes furniture, fashion, transport, products, ceramics and graphics. By using themes such as Identity, Manufacturing Innovations, the Digital Revolution and Lifecycle, the exhibition looks at how design provides a visual language to help use the objects around us. Prototypes, drawings, couture samples, models, first editions and finished industrial objects are included in the display, demonstrating the design process and subsequent influence of design on the contemporary culture. The exhibition also explores 'quiet' design, revealing how design surrounds us, and how, whether accidental or subtle, design plays a role in shaping the way we live, and enables us to understand the world. Highlights include the Anglepoise lamp, UK road signs, UK traffic lights, the Moulton bicycle displayed alongside an original Mini, large scale architectural models, including Norman Foster's HSBC Bank headquarters in Hong Kong, couture garments and street furniture. The exhibition also looks at the changing role of collecting design and future developments of the museum's collection, as it prepares to move to a new home at the former Commonwealth Institute. The new museum will provide dedicated gallery space to display the collection and celebrate the importance of design through a permanent display. Design Museum, Shad Thames, London SE1, until 22nd January.

Durer's Fame examines the work of the 16th century German artist and his enduring influence, spanning 5 centuries. Albrecht Durer excelled as a painter and draughtsman, but it was his skill as a printmaker that spread his fame across Europe. The printmaking process allowed for multiple copies of Durer's work to be produced that could easily be sold and distributed. This accessibility, combined with his technical brilliance and highly individual style, made him a much admired and imitated artist. The exhibition showcases a selection of Durer's prints together with contemporary and later copies of his work. These objects are augmented by a selection of illicit imitations and surprising tributes, including a 21st century tattoo. Highlights include Durer's iconic 'Melancholy', 'Saint Jerome in his Study', 'Knight, Death and the Devil', 'The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse' from 'The Apocalypse: Revelation of Saint John the Divine', 'Christ taking leave of his Mother' and 'Adam and Eve', alongside works by Italian and Netherlandish artists such as Marcantonio Raimondi's 'The Circumcision of Christ' from 'The Life of the Virgin', and Johan Wierix's 'Melencolia', Scottish artist John Runciman's 'Christ taking leave of his Mother', and a poster of German handball star Pascal Hens sporting a tattoo based on Durer's 'Study of Praying Hands'. National Gallery of Scotland, Edinburgh, until 11th October.

Mass Photography: Blackpool Through The Camera features photographs of the seaside resort from the early 20th century to today. The exhibition encourages the viewer to make their own way through the Blackpool experience, comparing and juxtaposing the way that different photographers have looked at people having fun. Over 100 images combine the work of some of Britain's greatest documentary photographers with amateurs who have lived or invested much holiday time in the resort. The starting point of the exhibition is the work that Humphrey Spender and Julian Trevelyan produced in 1937/1938 as part of the Mass Observation project, initiated to study the everyday lives of ordinary people in Britain as an 'anthropology of ourselves'. Spender and Trevelyan's affinity to British surrealism lets them appreciate Blackpool's efforts towards the exotic in images where dolls appear larger than people and advertisement copy reads as poetry. Yet their subject matter of gambling machines, the overcrowded beach, signs on hotels and ventriloquists are also to be found in the images of many other photographers who have come to Blackpool. By showing the variations of such recurring subjects, the display traces changing trends in photographic expression. The exhibition also includes a new video installation created by Nina Konnemann based on material from yearly updated souvenir films of the Blackpool Illuminations that evoke the special sense of time of the cyclical holiday seasons. Grundy Art Gallery, Blackpool, until 5th November.

Concluding

Toulouse-Lautrec and Jane Avril: Beyond The Moulin Rouge brings together a group of paintings, posters and prints to celebrate the remarkable creative partnership that captured the excitement and spectacle of bohemian Paris, and has to come to define the world of the Moulin Rouge. Nicknamed 'La Melinite' after a powerful form of explosive, the dancer Jane Avril was one of the stars of the Moulin Rouge in the 1890s. Known for her alluring style and exotic persona, her fame was assured by a series of dazzling posters designed by the artist Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec. Avril became an emblematic figure in Lautrec's world of dancers, cabaret singers, musicians and prostitutes. She was also a close friend of the artist and he painted a series of striking portraits of her. These go beyond Lautrec's exuberant poster images of the star performer, and give a more private account of Avril captured out of costume. In the strong, solid colours of lithograph prints, the showgirl icon appears in outrageous hats or with inky calves provocatively displayed. Off stage she is a pale faced, thoughtful and psychologically rounded individual in tender paintings. Highlights include the iconic painting 'At the Moulin Rouge', in which Avril is instantly recognisable by her red hair; 'Jane Avril in the Entrance to the Moulin Rouge', where she seems withdrawn, and far older than her 22 years; and 'Jane Avril leaving the Moulin Rouge', showing her as a passer-by, an elegant but anonymous and solitary figure; and the posters 'Jane Avril au Jardin de Paris', which was credited as launching her career; 'Divan Japonais', showing her in profile as a member of the audience; and 'Jane Avril', one of the last posters, showing her full length, with a snake coiling up her dress, animating her wild dance. Courtauld Gallery, London, until 18th September.

Forests, Rocks, Torrents: Norwegian And Swiss Landscapes From The Lunde Collection features landscape paintings, primarily of the 19th century, which have rarely been on public view before. This exhibition of 51 paintings introduces lesser known skilled and innovative European landscape artists, many of whom enjoyed great reputations during their lifetimes. The paintings are of two principal kinds: small-scale landscape oil sketches and 'finished' paintings, some very large. The works show how the Norwegian and Swiss landscapes often resemble each other, with their snow-capped peaks, glacial valleys and dense forests, and also demonstrate the similarities of the Norwegian and Swiss traditions. Yet they also reveal the many differences that climate, character, national temperament and political regimes can impose on art. The Norwegian landscape tradition is traced primarily through the artists Johan Christian Dahl, who committed himself to depicting his nation, although he worked in Dresden as seen in 'The Lower Falls of the Labrofoss'; his friend Thomas Fearnley, who unites the two schools with his Swiss paintings 'Near Meiringen', 'The Mountain Wetterhorn' and 'Valley of Lauterbrunnen'; and Peder Balke, whose specialised in scenes of storms at sea and shipwrecks on rocky coasts, as in 'Seascape'. The Swiss artists are headed by Caspar Wolf, whose interests lay in the depiction of rocks, caves and water as in 'The Geltenbach Falls in the Lauenen Valley with an Ice Bridge'; and Alexandre Calame, who portrayed mountains, dense fir forests and raging torrents, such as 'Cliffs of Seelisberg, Lake Lucerne', and 'Mountain Torrent before a Storm'. National Gallery until 18th September.

Thomas Struth: Photographs 1978 - 2010 provides a rare opportunity to view the German photographer's large-scale images of people and structures from all over the world. Thomas Struth travels widely and brings his intense and precise vision to subjects as diverse as visitors looking at famous works of art in the world's great museums, family portraits and the dense undergrowth of the Asian jungle. The exhibition comprises over 70 works that reveal the important role Struth has played in redefining fine art photography. It includes his iconic museum series of lifesize photographs showing tourists admiring Michelangelo's 'David' statue in Florence, and pupils chatting in front of Velazquez's 'Las Meninas' at the Prado in Madrid. The works show the awe that art can inspire on people's faces, without revealing the object they are looking at. Several photographs depict a range of places in which people invest faith and belief, from French Gothic cathedrals, to the El Capitan rock in Yosemite National Park in California, and high-tech research laboratories pushing the boundaries of science. Struth once compared the space shuttle programme to the construction of medieval cathedrals, reflecting on "the extremes of human effort, conviction, organisation and perhaps also hubris". This interest in human construction also encompasses huge-scale panoramic photographs of sites of shipyards, oil rigs and sprawling cities in Asia, structures which make our modern way of life possible, but at the same time dwarf people in their scale and ambition. The most recent images of sites at the cutting edge of technology include an almost 4m wide panorama of the space shuttle undergoing repair at the Kennedy Space Centre on Cape Canaveral. The exhibition also includes the dense jungles and forests from Struth's Paradise series, which are a detailed presentation of nature, with no human presence, in contrast to his other works about culture and systems of belief. Whitechapel Gallery, London, until 16th September.