Getting excited about going to see an exhibition is a good thing, as long as you don’t get too disappointed if it doesn’t turn out as good as you thought. Luckily, the Tetley’s ‘Painting in Time’ exhibition is a well thought out, cleverly adapted show that brings together an exciting meld of ideas based on what painting is and how it operates in a new expanded mode of realisation.
From inflatable paintings – personally my favourite, to painting machines and paintings that can be moved, assembled and changed by the visitor, it encourages a whole new dimension of how ‘painting’ can be construed.
‘Painting in Time’ makes a claim for painting as a time based medium. No longer constrained by the wall, the stretcher or paint, painting has teamed up with sculpture, performance and film to become immersive and interactive. And I’m totally in sync with this idea. My own works such as ‘Trembling Thoughts of Impending Roadworks’ ties into this. Not restricted by the canvas, the painting continues onto the wall ‘escaping’ the boundaries set within the constraints we automatically impose upon it.
The Tetley hopes that by bringing together these cross-generational artists, it encourages a ‘de-stabilisation’ of painting as a static object. Presented in an ever-evolving state of flux, they change and adapt depending on the viewer’s participation.
I’ll start with my favourite Claire Ashley’s ’Lime and Bricks Suck Pink you Tasteless Hun’ and ‘Another Tasteless Hunk’. Spraypainted canvas tarpaulins that inflate and deflate, unfolding as people walk around them. Next up is Lisa Milroy’s ‘Stock Exchange’ an interchangeable set of painting banners that can be continuously changed to form new painting compositions. Likewise, Kate Hawkins movable canvas paintings have been placed on hinges and IKEA furniture legs so they can be re-configured by the viewer.
Struck by Rob Leech’s bubbling tin of paint, aptly capturing the imagination of painting in flux. Along with Natasha Kidd’s painting machines that periodically fill her ‘paintings’ with white paint until they are overflowing and paint seeps out of the supports creating pictures live in action. Marking the transition of time as paint dries on the floor below them.
Yoko Ono’s ‘Painting to Hammer a Nail’ (1961) evolves every time someone hammers a nail into it. A ‘painting’ or ‘sculpture’ that changes instantly. Or Kristina Buch’s mat that people walk on unintentionally, not realising its actually a painting they’re standing on. I like this opposite mode of thought… why just have a painting that sits on a wall and is ‘untouchable’.
At the end of the day painting can be so much more.
No longer constrained by the wall, ‘Painting in Time’ brings together a whole new dimension of what it means to be a contemporary painter.
‘One Day, Something Happens: Paintings of People’ at Leeds Art Gallery is a pure painting show for the fine art aficionado. Lovers of portraits and people. Placing the body centre-stage and combining the figure within additional tapestry and silkscreen mediums. A visually eclectic range of paintings curated by Jennifer Higgie, writer and co-editor of Frieze. From Sickert and Lucian Freud to modern day contemporaries including Lynette Yiadom-Boayke’s girls playing in ‘Condor and the Mole’, Ryan Mosley’s afro dancers in ‘Northern Ritual’ through to the eccentric Rose Wylie’s “Girl on Liner’.
Overall, an eclectic mix of art provided by two superb art venues offering up distinct notions of painting, both modern and contemporary.
There are so many pictures from the 2 shows on my main blog… so here’s the link to Illustrating an Arty Life! www.illustratinganartylife.co.uk