News Archive

Private View held by Richard Andrews

Last updated : 11th July 2007

Commencing

Impressionists By The Sea explores the origins and development of the fashionable contemporary beach scene from the early 1860s to the early 1870s, in the work of Eugene Boudin, Manet and Claude Monet. It then looks at beach scenes of the 1880s, in which the Impressionists, notably Monet, turned their backs on the depictions of people, and used their new approach to capture the effects of weather and light on the coastline. During the 19th century, the northern coast of France was transformed from the preserve of local sea faring populations into 'the summer boulevard of Paris' with the arrival fashionable holidaymakers. Painters initially portrayed the coast in Romantic terms, focusing on the forces of nature and the depiction of picturesque scenes of local fishermen. By the 1860s, however, stylish holidaymakers began to appear in paintings, as resorts such as Deauville and Trouville became fashionable. To provide the context within which the Impressionists' pictorial innovations were made, their works are accompanied by late Romantic views by Eugene Isabey and Paul Huet, austere Realist interpretations by Gustave Courbet, and conventioinal representations of beach scenes by Whistler and Cazin. Highlights include Boudin's 'The Beach at Trouville - The Empress Eugenie', Manet's, 'On the Beach: Suzanne and Eugene Manet at Berck', Monet's 'The Beach at Sainte-Adresse' and 'Shadows on the Sea, Pourville', Renoir's 'Children on the Seashore, Guernsey', Isabey's 'The Beach at Granville', and Courbet's 'The Waterspout'. Royal Academy of Arts until 30th September.

Eye-Music: Kandinsky, Klee And All That Jazz is an examination of the particular correspondence between visual art and music at the beginning of the 20th century. Paul Klee took the fugues of Bach as the model for his multi-layered paintings, as did the less well known Czech artist Frantisek Kupka, one of the pioneers of abstract art, while Wassily Kandinsky's friendship with the avant-garde composer Schonberg encouraged the development of his free, expressive style. Later in the century jazz became a model for artistic improvisation in the work of Piet Mondrian, Alan Davie and others, and in the 1970s, Eduardo Paolozzi dedicated a series of screenprints to the composer Charles Ives, whose 'collage' technique incorporated popular tunes, folk music and marching songs within the symphonic tradition. This exhibition and the accompanying programme of concerts and events examines these relationships and other ideas, including the phenomenon of synaesthesia and the ability to 'hear' colours, the spectacle of sound and light performances, and early prototypes of abstract film by pioneers such as Viking Eggeling and Len Lye.

Sighting Music is an accompanying display of musical notation featuring influential scores from the history of 20th century music, where the visual experience of reading the music becomes an important part of its interpretation, including compositions by Arthur Bliss, John Cage, Cornelius Cardew and Tom Phillips.

A-tonal Time Twister: Thor McIntyre-Burnie is an installation that turns the gallery's lift into a space to play and control a specially recorded quartet. Inspired by Schonberg's a-tonal compositions and Kandinsky's colour-tone theory, it creates a unique experience during each journey, as the number of people and their movements control both the music heard and colours seen.

Pallant House Gallery, Chichester until 16th September.

Seaman Schepps (1881-1972): America's Court Jeweller reveals the highly original designs and brilliant craftsmanship, of the bold and colourful jewellery that entranced mid 20th century American society. Commissions from many White House families led the Washington Post to dub Seaman Schepps 'America's Court Jeweller', and Marlene Dietrich, Lauren Bacall, Katharine Hepburn, Doris Duke, Wanda Toscanini Horowitz, and the Duchess of Windsor as well as members of the du Pont, Mellon and Roosevelt families were amongst his clients. Schepps's eye catching jewellery not only appealed to modern, independent 20th century women - Andy Warhol was an avid collector. One thing that made the jewels of Seaman Schepps so distinctive and memorable was that although he never shied away from using diamonds, sapphires, rubies and emeralds, he also incorporated an astonishing diversity of natural materials such as seashells, sandalwood, walnut, Asian carvings and rock crystals. This exhibition comprises over 150 pieces of jewellery by Schepps, which trace the development of his innovative and extravagant style, from the earliest known surviving piece, a pair of bracelets in Art Deco style, composed of engraved emeralds and engraved ruby leaves with diamonds in white gold made in 1931, through changing fashions and styles, to a large natural coral branch bracelet with yellow gold, emeralds and diamonds, which he presented to one of his employees on her 25th anniversary with the company in 1969. Gilbert Collection, Somerset House, London until 27th August.

Continuing

Zaha Hadid: Architecture And Design is the first full scale retrospective in Britain of the work of Zaha Hadid - once referred to as 'the world's greatest unbuilt architect'. Though this was the fate of many of her early projects, her practice, now 20 years old, has grown to a team of 100, and a rush of projects are coming to fruition. In the last year, Hadid has opened two substantial buildings in Germany: a car factory for BMW and the Phaeno Science Centre (shortlisted for the 2006 RIBA Stirling Prize). Both have triumphantly demonstrated her ability to translate the essence of her virtuoso spatial invention in solid form. Now she is busy working on projects all over the world, ranging from masterplans in Singapore and Istanbul, to an opera house in China, a museum in Rome, and a skyscraper in Dubai. This exhibition combines renderings, models and computer images of both the earlier unrealised designs - including the infamous Cardiff Opera House project - together with her recently completed buildings, and proposals for new projects, such as a transport museum in Glasgow, and the Aquatic Centre for the 2012 Olympics in Stratford. In addition, the display also includes Hadid's interior furnishing designs, from the black crystal 'Swarm' chandelier that greets visitors, to paintings, sculptural furniture and vases. Design Museum, London until 25th November.

Henri Fantin-Latour: Painting The Summer showcases the work of the 19th century French artist, who is regarded as one of the most important Realist painters of his generation, and was a strong influence on the symbolist movement. Fantin-Latour had a particular skill for capturing the beauty of flowers. His aim was to convey - as accurately as possible - flowers at their moment of greatest beauty and freshness. Using plain vases and dark backgrounds, he worked to make the vibrant yellows and pale whites of his roses and lilies stand out from their frames. This exhibition principally comprises these flower pictures, such as 'White Roses', 'Dahlias', The Rosy Wreath, 'Pink and Yellow Roses' and 'The Rosy Wealth of June'. It also includes a portrait, 'Madame Leon Matre', and his more whimsical narrative works such as 'The Tryst', 'La Causeries' and 'Judgement of Paris'. In addition, there are paintings by some of Fantin-Latour's French contemporaries, including Maxime Maufra, and English influences, such as George Frederic Watts. To complement the exhibition, contemporary sculptor Lorna Green, who works in a variety of materials, including wood, stone, earth, planting, bricks, steel, cement, bronze, water, glass, plastics and light, has created a new piece to reflect the Fantin-Latour works on display - a giant bowl of roses. York City Art Gallery until 23rd September.

Daily Encounters: Photographs From Fleet Street celebrates the history of British press photography during the span of its Fleet Street years, from 1900 to 1982. Drawing upon the rich and relatively neglected surviving archives of newspaper photography, it focuses on two parallel stories, one of a powerful industry with an internal culture of its own, and the other of the often uneasy relationship that grew between public figures, the photographic press and the wider population of readers. The exhibition explores the pictorial depiction of Britain and Britishness, the creation of new forms of celebrity, and the scripting and constant redrafting of the rules of engagement between photographers, editors and the subjects of their insatiable gaze. Newspaper photographs of politicians, jockeys, gangsters, models and actors are interwoven with images of the industry itself - the owners and editors, newsrooms and printing presses, and photographers and journalists, as they hunted and gathered stories. The exhibition features over 75 images that evocatively recall some of the most memorable events in recent British history, from the arrest of Emmeline Pankhurst outside Buckingham Palace, through the abdication of King Edward VIII, to the scandal of the Profumo Affair. More than that, it reflects how Fleet Street helped to illuminate and redefine the public's relationship with the previously remote world of the most famous and powerful forever. National Portrait Gallery until 15th October.

Wellcome Collection is a new £30m cultural venue from the Wellcome Trust that combines three galleries: Medicine Man - featuring historical artefacts, Medicine Now - examining contemporary heath and medicine, and a special exhibitions space, with the world famous Wellcome Library, a public events 'forum', a cafe, bookshop and a club, to provide visitors with insights into the human condition. At its heart is the collection of medical artefacts assembled by Henry Wellcome, the 19th century pharmaceutical entrepreneur, whose fortune founded the Wellcome Trust. A compulsive collector, by the time of his death he and his team had amassed over one and a half million objects. These encompassed Florence Nightingale's moccasins, shrunken heads from South America, Charles Darwin's walking stick, amputation saws used by Victorian doctors, a lock of George III's hair, and the 'Claxon earcap', a cloth harness to be worn by children at night to correct protruding ears. From this eclectic collection, some 1,500 exhibits have been selected for display, including works by Picasso, Mark Quinn, John Isaacs, Christine Borland and Martin Parr, and ancient artefacts such as 19th century sex aids, a blade from a French Revolution guillotine, a Chinese torture chair, a 14th century Peruvian mummy, Nelson's razor and a DNA sequencing robot. The special exhibition space is devoted to The Heart, with a video of an actual transplant operation, anatomical drawings by Leonardo da Vinci, Aztec sacrificial knives for cutting out victims' hearts, an Andy Warhol painting of the heart, an Egyptian book of the dead, and a five foot long sperm whale's heart. Wellcome Collection, 183 Euston Road London, continuing.

Anthony Caro And Sheila Girling celebrates the lifelong partnership of Anthony Caro and Sheila Girling, although this is the first time they have exhibited together for ten years. Twelve of Anthony Caro's 'Flats', a series of monumental bent, welded and bolted steel sculptures, many of which have never been seen in Britain before, are sited in various locations across the grounds. The shapes, with their curving edges, evoke in steel sensations analogous to the diaphanous 'veil' paintings of Morris Louis. They create narrowed, trapped spaces, contained between monolithic vertical and gently reclining upright elements, for the most part in brown textures of the rusted steel. Sheila Girling's work, on display in the gallery, is a series of large abstract paintings that use the qualities of pumice gel medium and acrylic paint to explore the rich colour and textures revealed by the weathering of architectural surfaces, such as walls and doors, in a variety of climates. She incorporates elements of collage, and her landscapes consist of thick layers of acrylic paint on the canvas. While the sensuality of colour is always paramount in Girling's work, the constructive process that occurs with collage is more akin to the three dimensional dynamic of sculpture than conventional painting. New Art Centre Sculpture Park & Gallery Salisbury until 16th September.

Panic Attack! Art In The Punk Years marks the 30th anniversary of the release of the Sex Pistols' God Save The Queen album, with its infamous cover by Jamie Reid. The exhibition explores art produced from the mid 1970s to the mid 1980s in Britain and the United States, at a time when both countries were a breeding ground for subcultures of punk and post-punk. Although the punk movement is largely known for its music, fashion and graphics, this show exposes the equally vibrant art that emerged during these years, most notably in London, New York and Los Angeles. It includes the work of some 30 artists, and examines art that shares many of the concerns and attitudes associated with punk. Some of the artists have direct links with the punk scene, including Nan Goldin, Derek Jarman and Raymond Pettibon, others have less well known, but significant connections with punk in their early careers, such as Tony Cragg, Jenny Holzer and Barbara Kruger. The inner city as a place of fantasy, protest and decay, the body as a political battleground and the dynamic crossover between the worlds of art and music are major themes of the exhibition. David Wojnarowicz in New York and Stephen Willats in London turned to urban dereliction as a symbol of personal and social crisis, as did New York artists such as Jean-Michel Basquiat, who were closely associated with the emergence of graffiti art. The exhibition also explores the inter-disciplinary nature of the punk movement and the many collaborations that formed between artists and musicians during this period. Barbican Art Gallery until 9th September.

Concluding

Towards A New Laocoon considers how the sculptural aspects of Laocoon have been interpreted and re-interpreted by artists over time. The Antique group - which depicts the Trojan priest Laocoon and his sons in the grip of two giant snakes - was rediscovered in 1506 and almost immediately put on show in the Vatican. Since that time artists and writers have succumbed to its fascination, and its inspirational quality. This exhibition looks at Laocoon through a British lens, focusing on juxtapositions of seven works from the 18th and 20th centuries. While the historic works reference the original sculpture, highlighting interest in the Laocoon's drama, narrative, expression and status, the more recent pieces take the Laocoon's more formal characteristics, turning a figurative story into a more pop and abstract one. Eduardo Paolozzi, Tony Cragg and Richard Deacon have each made a number of works that respond to or mirror the Laocoon. Paolozzi was fascinated by classical heritage, and owned his own small scale cast of the group. His works variously redefine its serpentine coils and imprisoned forms. Cragg's works also focus on the forms, which are caught up by the snakes, binding them together in an endless deadly embrace, but rendered in everyday, urban found objects. Deacon's monumental Laocoon similarly plays on the quality of time, by locking straight and curved wooden sections into one great continuous spiral. There is an accompanying show of sculptor's drawings on photographs, providing their contemporary response to classical forms. Henry Moore Institute, Leeds, until 12th August.

Surreal Things: Surrealism And Design is the first exhibition to explore the influence of Surrealism on the world of design - theatre, interiors, fashion, film, architecture and advertising. Alongside paintings by Magritte, Ernsta and Dali are some of the most extraordinary objects of the 20th century, from Dali's 'Mae West lips' sofa and 'Lobster Telephone', to Elsa Schiaparelli's 'Tear' and 'Skeleton' dresses, and Meret Oppenheims's 'Table with Bird's Legs'. With nearly 300 exhibits, the show looks at how artists engaged with design, and designers were inspired by Surrealism. Among the highlights are Giorgio de Chirico's set and costume designs for Diaghilev's Le Bal; Dali's 'Venus de Milo aux tiroirs' and 'Arm' chair; Oscar Dominguez's satin lined 'Wheelbarrow' arm chair and 'Fur' bracelet; Marcel Jean's tromp l'oeil 'Armoire Surrealiste' and 'Le Spectre du Gardenia'; Alberto Giacometti's 'Disagreeable object'; Isamu Noguchi's 'Cloud' sofa; a model of Frederick Kiesler's Surrealist room from Peggy Guggenheim's The Art of This Century Gallery in New York; examples of how Surrealist imagery was adopted and popularised in advertising by companies such as Shell and Ford, and in magazines such as Vogue and Harper's Bazaar; film clips, including the dream sequence from Alfred Hitchcock's 'Spellbound'; and a study of Monkton, the purple painted Sussex home of the Surrealist patron Edward James. Victoria & Albert Museum until 22nd July.

Artists' Self-Portraits From The Uffizi: Masterpieces From Velazquez To Chagall presents a selection of 49 artists' self-portraits from the collection of the Uffizi Gallery in Florence. These remarkable works are usually housed in the Vasari Corridor, a kilometre of corridor linking the Palazzo Vecchio to the Palazzo Pitti, which is not generally open to the public, and historically, the collection has not been allowed to travel. This is therefore an opportunity to experience a slice - never before seen in this country - of one of the most remarkable sights in the art world. The entire collection comprises some 1,600 artists' self-portraits in all, covering six centuries of Western art. This exhibition offers visitors the opportunity to come face to face with Velazquez, Filippino Lippi, Andrea Pozzo, Gian Lorenzo Bernini, Guido Reni, Rembrandt, Angelika Kauffman, Giovanni Boldini, Frans van Mieris the Elder, Carlo Dolci, Tintoretto, Johan Zoffany Joshua Reynolds, Anders Zorn, Carlo Carra, Pietro Annigoni, Michelangelo Pistoletto, Giacomo Balla and Marc Chagall as they saw themselves - or possibly as they wished themselves to be seen. For while all portraits are investigations of people, looking at yourself is different from looking at someone else, and for artists, self-portraits were also a method of self publicity. Dulwich Picture Gallery until 15th July.