for Upcoming Exhibitions
21 May - 31 July
David Batchelor, Jonathan Callan, John Chamberlain,
Ian Davenport, Yves Klein, Grace & Owens,
Peter Liversidge, Kay Rosen and Ed Ruscha
Gravity’s Rainbow is, as the title suggests, an exhibition about colour, with a nod to the American writer Thomas Pynchon’s use of ‘borrowed’ colour adjectives as imaginative prompts in his novel of the same name (“drowned man green”, “creamy chocolate FBI-shoe brown”, “deep cheap perfume aqua marine”&hellip) This is a show in which colour is integral to the work, and may even be its subject, but which always originates elsewhere. “Found” colour, in other words, borrowed or stolen from outside the studio.
In the main gallery space David Batchelor’s five giant balls of colour will be scattered across the floor, each one of them painstakingly wound from electrical wires in different shades of blue, yellow, green white, black and orange. Peter Liversidge’s take on colour is quite literally found: picked up on his travels and on the street and assembled on a shelf – a series of random finds and fragments united only by their common hue; in this case an army of little yellow objects. John Chamberlain’s colour is found in the hard metalic glint of the twisted car panels that form his tangled sculptures and Jonathan Callan’s in the hard covers of old books, sliced and rearranged into abstract reliefs.
Three site-specific installations anchor the exhibition. The first is provided by Tommy Grace and Kate Owens whose temporary stained-glass window will transform a section of Ingleby Gallery’s glass frontage with panels cut from coloured pastic bags, filtering the early summer sunlight and bathing the gallery in a synthetic pool of colour.
Kay Rosen’s wall painting is made from ordinary house paint layered in rectangles to form a kind of modernist abstraction in which the colours are chosen from the pages of a paint chart entirely on the strength of their quasi poetic names and the evocative, if slightly ridiculous, phrase that these names create when gathered together.
Ian Davenport is also making a site-specific wall painting. Like Rosen, his choice of colour is found in the real world, in this case by deconstructing an old master painting into its colour components and re-assembling it as a series of poured lines. His painting offers an alternative, and quite literal, reading of the exhibition’s title: paint flows in rivulets directly down the gallery wall, a rainbow of colours drawn by gravity towards the floor where it pools into a technicolour puddle.
Image: Ian Davenport, Puddle Painting: Permanent Green (After Bonnard), 2010
EDINBURGH ARTS FESTIVAL EXHIBITION:
MYSTICS OR RATIONALISTS?
4 August - 24 September
Susan Collis, Iran do Espirito Santo, Ceal Floyer, Susan Hiller, Jeremy Millar, Cornelia Parker,
Katie Paterson, Simon Starling and Cerith Wyn Evans
"Conceptual artists are mystics rather than rationalists. They leap to conclusions that logic cannot reach” [Sol LeWitt, Sentences on Conceptual Art, Art Now, Volume 3, issue no.2, 1971]
It is forty years since Sol LeWitt published his famous Sentences: a sequence of 35 statements that defined his personal parameters for the making and understanding of conceptual art. Sentence number one provides the title and inspiration for Ingleby Gallery’s exhibition for the 2011 Edinburgh Art Festival and is still as compelling and instructive an introduction to the first principles of conceptual art as it was in 1971.
The exhibition presents the work of nine artists each of who make work that invites the viewer to make the leap between an idea and an object. In every case the resulting artwork is a thing of grace and intrigue in itself, but always the story of why it exists in the world raises it to yet another level. “The idea” as LeWitt noted, “is the machine that makes the art”.
Four large sculptures by Jeremy Millar will run down the centre of the main gallery, each one a direct reference to Sol LeWitt’s Incomplete Open Cubes of 1974, though with sections carefully cut out and burnt in small bonfires at the centre of each cube, thus turning LeWitt’s precise formalism into a potential vehicle for ritual and magic.
A sense of the magical also marks Susan Hiller and Cornelia Parker’s work in which the apparently factual gives way to something strange and unfamiliar. In Parker’s The Collected Death of Images a beaten ‘page’ of silver has been fashioned from the particles left over from the process of 'fixing' an image with photographic chemicals. It appears almost like the surface of an old mirror carrying the suggestion that these slivers of silver might contain the ghosts of lost images.
An inclination to subvert the ordinary is shared by much of the work in this exhibition. Iran do Espirito Santo’s sculptures dignify the familiarly banal with enormous shifts of scale and material whilst Ceal Floyer and Susan Collis question the nature of things with humour, as well as illusion. In both of their work there is an awareness of the absurd and a deceptive simplicity that belies the complexity of the ideas at work. Collis’s Down to the Mother apparently presents a line of white paint splattered across the gallery’s wooden floorboards but on closer inspection the marks are revealed as finely inlaid discs of mother of pearl.
The essence of perception&hellip what it means to look, and think, and look again, is another crosscurrent that unites all the artists in this exhibition. Cerith Wyn Evans, Simon Starling and Katie Paterson all make work that originates in a territory somewhere between poetry and (often scientific) research, asking questions about perception, often on a grand scale. In Light bulbs to Simulate Moonlight Paterson has turned our current obsession for constant daylight on its head and teamed up with the lighting specialists OSRAM to create a supply of ‘moonlight’ bulbs to last the average human life span– a spectral glow of light transmitted with identical wavelengths to those of moonlight, but also a poignant reminder that in the end all we add up to is a crate of 289 bulbs. Mystics or Rationalists? Perhaps, in the end, a little bit of both.
Images: Cerith Wyn Evans Column (Assemblages) V, 2010 / Susan Colis Down To Mother, 2008 / Katie Paterson Light bulbs to Simulate Moonlight, 2008 / Cornelia Parker The Collected Death of an Image, 1996
If you would like any further images or information, please telephone 0131 556 4441 or email alice@inglebygallerycom
Edinburgh College of Art (eca) is a charity registered in Scotland, number SC009201