Sunday 30 August 2015

Heartbeat - Charles Pétillon

10,000 balloons float in Covent Garden Piazza as Charles Pétillon brings his Heartbeat art installation to the Square. The installation was unveiled on 27 August and will be there until 27 September 2015.
The installation is inspired by Covent Garden’s heritage, pioneer in being the first public space as well as the liveliness of the West End. The white light that pulsates from the balloons represent the history, change and energy of the area. The installation took 25 people over 5 nights to install which measures at 54 metre long and 12 metre wide.
“The balloon invasions I create are metaphors. Their goal is to change the way in which we see the things we live alongside each day without really noticing them. With Heartbeat I wanted to represent the Market Building as the beating hear of London’s lie. Each balloon has its own dimensions and yet is part of a giant but fragile composition that creates a floating cloud above the energy of the market below. This fragility is represented by contrasting materials and also the whiteness of the balloons that move and pulse appearing as alive and vibrant as the area itself.” – Charles Pétillon
Around the corner in Unit 5 of the Royal Opera House Arcade is a pop-up gallery of Charles Pétillon showcasing photographs and other works.


Saturday 29 August 2015

Frith Gallery - Chen Zhen

A Chen Zhen exhibition was held at Frith Street on Golden Square, London. The exhibition was held on 7 July to 14 August 2015. Chen Zhen is known as one of the leading figures in Chinese Avant-Garde.
The first piece I came across in the exhibition is the Autel (Alter) Series which explores the artist’s experiences of the consumer society. The most prominent piece which is most striking is of the red ball which is a meteorite encased in Bauxite ore. Objects beside it shows the sacrifice of the consumer object as it gives itself to the birth and death represented in the meteorite.
The next installation is the Cocon du Vide (Empty Cocoon) which resembles both a “cocoon” and someone bent down in prayer. The installation is made with threads of prayer and abacus beads with a child’s toy in the centre made with a shell case and ammunitions. The title seems to suggest with the work the idea of rebirth and growth, especially with the juxtaposition between the toy and the cocoon casing.
On a table has atop the Crystal Landscape of Inner Body, made with glasswork, forms organs made up in the human body. Each piece also takes on a symbol of the 12 astrological signs.

Instrumental Musical is a series of works made up of traditional Chinese chamber pots. It is associated with the sound of cleaning, which is linked to Chen Zhen’s experiences in the Chinese Cultural Revolution.

Un-interrupted Voice is are percussion instruments made from beds and chairs from around the world. The work is connected to the ideology of Buddhists would rather be beaten than speak out openly about faith. The drumstick, made from police batons, are to strike the instruments as a way of self-awareness or “drumming an awakening of the mind” and is not to imply any form of real violence.
Lands-Objectscape has these desolate settings illustrated with everyday objects in glass “coffins” to signify victims of the consumer society.

Hung from the ceiling is Lumière Innocente (Innocent Light) which is of a child’s bed which shares the same feel of Cocon du Vide.
“A child’s bed hanging in space … A transparent organic form … A silent life attached to a thread in the void, nascent and vanishing. A cocoon of light …” Chen Zhen describing Lumière Innocente

Friday 28 August 2015

Richard Saltoun - David Hall: Situations Envisaged

David Hall’s Situations Envisaged came to the Richard Saulton gallery from 17 July to 14 August 2015. The exhibition was curated by Stephen Partridge in consultation with Caroline Irving, Anna Ridley, Adam Lockhart as well as Hall’s daughter Debi Hall. The exhibition showcases the different mediums Hall uses for his art through video, photograph and installation.
Vidicon Inscriptions: The Tape shows the Hall’s approach to video experiementation with the video as it registers the motion of a polaroid shutter as it burns on to a “vidicon” tube.
The other video shown in the exhibition is the TV Fighter (Cam Era Plane) which creates a seamless connected timeline between two videos of a footage of a World War II fighter target image against another image. The overlap presents the past with the present seemingly allowing the two images coincide together as if they are both travelling together in a vacuum.

Displacement (Removal Piece) is an image of a photograph of an image of a reproduced installation of Hall’s work “removal” which was done by sanding down the gallery floor.

The Richmond Park Series are a series of 5 black and white photographs he took in Richmond Park in London.

Cinema is a series of 5 films: Actor, Between, Edge, This Surface and View. The films were made with Tony Sinden and were exhibited at Tate in 1974. Through the shaping of traditions and techniques of film, the films explore the comparison between the materiality of the screen to the image that is being projected.
A Situation Envisaged: The Rite II (Cultural Eclipse) is part of the Situation Envisaged Series, which was started in 1978. It was shown in an exhibition Video Positive ’89 held at Tate Gallery Liverpool. The installation is made up of 15 monitors stacked together with the centre TV monitor broadcasting an image of the moon, with the sounds provided by David Cunningham.
“Striking in its prescient re-interpretation of both the Minimalist Sculpture of the 1960s, of which Hall was part of, and the post-Minimalist artistic hybridity of the 1970s, which he helped to create” – Chrissie Isle on A Situation Envisaged

Thursday 27 August 2015

Phillips - Joana Vasconcelos: Material World

Joana Vasconcelos: Material World was exhibited at the Phillips gallery in Mayfair, London. The exhibition was held from 15 July to 28 August 2015. The exhibition features sculptures of her textured works which brought her to prominence during the 51st Venice Biennale. The exhibition is to coincide with Joana Vasconcelos’s Thames and Hudson monograph book.

The exhibition features bold, playful and a very colourful work to crochet coming together to form a unique style of sculptures. One large behemoth of a piece featured is Material Girl, brings not only to mind of Madonna’s hit singles back in the 80’s and among many at the exhibition, a real gem to behold.
Material Girl
It’s a take on it would seem that Joana Vasoncelos through the fabrication of the materials to form sculptures, making a statement on what she perceives as “Material World”. It almost like an alien world capturing different details playing on what’s familiar but bringing out a whole different side, witnessed in New Wave which employs LED lights, cushions and a picture frame. There’s also a section of ceramic animals showing Vasconcelos’s resilience in showing her art in different forms of animal snapshot poses with her signature spin. She can also inject some fun and humour into her work with Tea for Two, which is a double urinal coated in crochet.
Tea for Two
New Wave

Wednesday 26 August 2015

Carting Lane - London's Last Sewer Lamp

Round the corner from the Savoy Hotel is Carting Lane, which is best known as “Farting Lane” made famous by the Sewer Lamp suspended in between the Strand and Victoria Embankment Gardens. It is said that the lamp is the last surviving Victorian sewage lamp.

The lamp was made by Joseph Webb as a Webb Patent Sewer Lamp in the late 19th century. It was then partly powered by the town’s gas supplies and partly powered by - ahem - the methane gas collected from waste from the sewage system running through the Savoy Hotel. A good invention at the time as it - like a candle - burned off the smell of the sewage and germs as well as providing light to the street. The lamp is hollow so that the gas can travel up the lamp to keep it alight. The lamp itself now only runs on gas.
Some time ago, a lorry reversed into the lamp causing a haphazard to pedestrians so it was closed off. It was restored by Thames Gas engineers and is now protected by the London council of Westminster.


Tuesday 25 August 2015

Southbank Centre - Love and Liquid Fire

The Love and Liquid Fire installation is an exhibition part of the Southbank Centre's Festival of Love. The works were created by Chris Bracey who is known for his neon sign works in God's Own Junkyard and neon lights in Soho, London. The installations are there from the 6 June to 31 August 2015.
Part of the exhibitions show early works and pictures of his life, which include ones from when he was a young man. There are conceptual and initial designs of works of his such as The Globe which was commissioned for the 2012 London Olympic Games as well as images of his neon signed featured in Stanley Kubrick's Eyes Wide Shut, Judge DreddBatman and the ultra camp Superman III. Another cabinet shows his works that his done for the fashion Company, Mulberry. 
The installations on shows neon signs in all shapes and forms exploring the different side of love such as "PRIDE", "Passion" as well as "Heartbreak Hotel". The letterings in bold and striking fonts and colours playing on the different forms that it takes forming an universal beauty and appeal to them. The neon stands are surrounded by remnants of photographs and objects giving the exhibition more of a personal touch to them.

Monday 24 August 2015

Somerset House - Summer Screen Film Poster Exhibition 2015

The Summer Screen Film Poster Exhibition in its third year is held in the West Wing Gallery of Somerset House from 30 July to 23 August 2015. It celebrates through illustrations and graphic design of posters inspired by films being shown at this year’s Film4 Summer Screen held in the courtyard of Somerset House. It is presented by both Somerset House and Print Club London.
Asides from the prints on display, there is a makeshift television screening the behind-the-scene footage of creating the poster designs by different artists.
The exhibition has in total 15 limited editions screen prints which are available for purchase. There are 200 prints of each design at the exhibition on Print Club London’s website. 
Cassandra Yap - True Romance
Concepción Studios - Roman Holiday
Rose Blake - West Side Story

Joe Wilson - Princess Monoke
Joe Vass - The Warriors
Steven Wilson - An American Werewolf in London
Ben Rider - Aguirre, Wrath of God
Barry Leonard - Me and Earl and the Dying Girl
Rose Stellar - Do the Right Thing
Peter Strain - The Silence of the Lambs
Ministry of Love - The Second Mother
Holly Wales - The Graduate
Claudia Borfiga - Last of the Mohicans
RYCA - Withnail & I