Monday, May 12, 2014

Matisse and more (plus another view of The Shard)

Don't Cut This Out
On Saturday I watched a very illuminating BBC 2 Culture Show Special which produced a well over-due reappraisal of some of the key Women artists who were involved in the Pop art movement which peaked in the 1960s in the USA and Europe.

It then occurred to me that while I was visiting other less mainstream Contemporary Art galleries there was a danger that I'd miss out on the really big ticket events going on - I'd seen the  Richard Hamilton retrospective but even though I had heard good things about the Matisse Cut-Outs I had not got around to seeing it, so on Sunday (yesterday) I decided to put this right.

Well the first thing to say is that there's a lot of it- for someone over 80 with health problems it's pretty amazing in terms of quantity alone.
Having highlighted the quantity I would not wish to detract from the quality - some of it is amazing - I'm reminded of what Nick Pearson tole me (and others )  at OPEN Ealing  to paraphrase Artists find a problem and look to solve it - I think this is one good explanation anyway - what Henri did in his cut out phase was solve several, the cut-outs are very much about the composition 'question' (as well as the health question) - how Matisse manages to make cut outs also appear 3 dimensional is impressive to say the least.

To see the iconic Blue Nudes and The Snail amongst others was both a treat and a privilege, I will try and visit again at a time when the crowds allow for more contemplation.
Extending but not soon enough

Generally when I'm at Tate Modern I take a look at the Mark Rothko 'Seagrams' sadly this is not possible at present (some work going on) but this did give me the chance to enjoy a couple of things I'd not seen before.

One was a pioneer/forerunner of Pop Art Alex Katz, I particularly like the Full Moon (1988) - Katz has noticeably influenced YBAs like Julian Opie I also saw a knowing  Video  by Omar Fast called The Casting

Still on balance it will be good when the Tate Modern extension comes online.

Shard View

It's amazing to see this architectural statement  on London's historic skyline - what does it say about London?- I'm not sure, but it does not shout decline that's for sure..

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