An exhibition with works by Doug Foster, Anselm Kiefer, Hyungkoo Lee, Boyle Family, Antony Gormley and Gerry Judah.
The two new works by Doug Foster, large rusted metal boxes containing high-definition video installations, are the focus of the upper space. BOB’ (2007) explores our innate attraction to symmetry and repetition by following in the relentless footsteps of a man with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. Another installation ‘Frozen’ (2007) appears to be an inspection window looking into a cryonic preservation chamber. It raises questions about the quest to prolong life and the motives for doing so. These are installed with ‘Breather’ (2006) a tense and visually compelling work which uses a novel stereoscopic technique to immerse the viewer as a scene of desperation plays out within the seemingly water-filled confines of one box.
Anselm Kiefer’s work reflects his ongoing exploration of fundamental questions about humanity’s place in the cosmos. His large painting ‘Sefer Hechaloth’ (2003) is inspired by the ancient Hebrew book of the same name which describes the journey from earth through seven heavenly palaces to the final palace revealing God.
Antony Gormley’s work takes the body as the point of departure for his sculpture. ‘Insider’ (1998) is part of a series of works which he describes as being “to the body what memory is to consciousness: a kind of residue, something that is left behind. It is a core rather than a skeleton. It is a way of allowing things that are internal to the body – attitudes and emotions embedded in posture or hidden by gesture – to become revealed.”
The Boyle Family’s ‘Shattered red tiles’ (1979) is part of their lifetime project. They eschew self-expression, using various random selection techniques to isolate a rectangle of the Earth’s surface which is then recreated in fixed and permanent form in mixed media. Their aim is “to try and make art that does not exclude anything as a potential subject”.
Gerry Judah’s painting ‘Angels 05’ (2006) was inspired by images of war zones and concerns the rupture of places, lives and architecture by violence. Judah recreates his scenes from scores of miniature buildings, immaculately constructed from foam board, complete with solar panels, water towers and staircases, which he systematically destroys after fixing them onto canvas.¬† The accumulated ‘rubble’, and the sea of empty canvas on which it floats, is lacquered with layers of acrylic gesso to create ‘black on black’ paintings which capture the scenes of decimation.
The entire lower gallery is given to work by Hyungkoo Lee, the Korean artist who showed at the Venice Biennale this year. Lee’s dramatically spot-lit installations, ‘Canis Latrans Animatus’ (2005-2006) and ‘Geococcyx Animatus’ (2005-2006), play with the distinctions between science and fiction and our willingness to accept scientific ‘truths’. Two skeletons suspended from the ceiling look like a natural history exhibit but are in fact based on a more familiar scene – the cartoon characters Wile E. Coyote and Roadrunner in mid-chase.
Download press release here.