Gallery run 14th November

Gallery run.

Sterling Ruby of Gagosian had commandeered huge welding tables and attached pans and faucets. The effect is a sort of romanticised blue-collar aesthetic.

Andrea Buttner at Hollybush Gardens has made a great version of the azure blue ceiling in the Arena Chapel at Padua by Giotto.

Torey Thornton of Stuart Shave Modern Art with paintings and objects closely relating to paintings. These seem to deliberate on nature and abstraction and the relation between them. Here we see chromosomes in an abstract composition.

Doug Aitkin of Victoria Miro Gallery with glowing sculptures depicting our Information Age.

Celia Paul of Victoria Miro Gallery with delicate portraits.

Peter Davies of Approach Gallery with gestural-abstraction-works inspired by small structured studies. The transition from study to the movement of paint splattering is unclear, which is a good thing.

Hana Miletic at Approach Gallery explores the craft heritage of Croatia and its capital Zagreb . Some of the work is aesthetically attractive, some is edgy and interesting. A zig zag of woven fabric copies the blue tape over a broken window that the artist had photographed.

This week’s update on the Gallery Runner route (yellow line). A longer run down the Regent’s Canal has taken the route off the map and onto the frame surrounding it. Lovely run, with sun and galleries. Today was 31 miles. Divide this by 20 and we get the body mass burnt off which is 1.55kg.
Here’s a thought. All too often such discussion leads to the “health” of losing weight, but isn’t the exact opposite the amazing thing. That the human body needs to use so little resources to propel itself round this distance. It will be about 50 of these runs before I have even used up my own body weight!

The Line Sculpture Trail, 4th August

With the galleries on summer holiday, I decided to check out The Line sculpture trail. Its collection of artworks are embedded along two geographic vectors that by happy coincidence lie superimposed upon one another pointing in a northerly direction. They are the River Lea and the Greenwich Meridian line. The Line sculpture trail is rather less fluent than the geographical lines it references, due in part to tight bows near the mouth of the River Lea and accompanying industrial estates that make the river at this stage inaccessible. But this makes for added adventure.

An Oyster card is useful too since another major feature of the Line is the Thames itself. Whilst the first sculptures are situated on the south side of the river the rest are reached by a ride across the Thames on the Emirates cable car. After a surprisingly exciting “flight”, the route planners have then urged the adventurer to take the DLR and resume on foot after a short journey by train. But I hot-foot it through the industrial estates and rejoin The Line further north. A river path has appeared and the Lea has become navigable again to the casual stroller.

Along this stretch of the river I see a sculpture by Damien Hirst identifiable by its cartoony style. It is a painted bronze about the size and shape of a saloon car. Small blue and red circles punctuate its surface in pairs and have been clearly articulated from the day they were cast in the original monochrome bronze. They represent blood vessels close to the surface of the skin and add a sensation of visceral reality to the giant biological machine of which they are part. Other vessels are rendered too in an extended palette of colours which try through their clarity to emulate the strange alphabet of the book of life. Sweat glands, hairs and shunts that cool the skin are all present and speak of their function with the clarity of a medical textbook illustration.

This mass of bronze mimics no more than a slither of skin but it is brought to life by the bright colours and remind me of a fabulous slice of trifle. I graciously receive this generous offering and tuck into yet another of the courses that have been served up today! The layers are stepped on their upper surface adding a further sense of grandeur to their scale. But like those classical depictions of vanities that have a skull or some other device to remind us of our own mortality, thick black hairs sit atop the spectacle, and upset any further sense of appetitive fulfilment. They are curved as though caught momentarily by a delicate breeze drawn off the surface of the nearby river. And it is along this river that the next item of the trail lies, a spiral DNA structure fashioned from shopping trolleys, somehow commenting on our most recent mutation that has come to characterise the first part of the 21st century, our transformation into shopaholics.

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Emirates Air Line which forms a vital link crossing the Thames for The Line sculpture trail.

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Opposite larger than life bronze contemporary figure with its own smart phone by Thomas J Price on The Line sculpture trail.

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Carsten Holler of Gagosian joins his spiral tube slide to the spiral tower of Anish Kapoor of Lisson Gallery.

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Antony Gormley of White Cube showing Quantum Cloud on The Line sculpture trail.

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Richard Wilson RA produced Slice of Reality, the title being visible on a life ring on board. The Line sculpture trail.

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Sterling Ruby of Spruth and Magers and Gagosian produced this angular canon-like form. He paid particular attention to the spray paint whose code is displayed in welded lettering on the base. The Line sculpture trail.

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Damien Hirst of White Cube on The Line sculpture trail. The painted bronze sculpture imitates a few cubic millimetres of skin.

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Gary Hume of David Zwirner gallery with brass leg-like forms on The Line sculpture trail.

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Abigail Fallis on The Line sculpture trail. Shopping trolleys imitate structural molecules in a DNA spiral. The poppies were growing round the concrete base.

Gallery runs extra photos

Favourite photos from the archive.

19a1Georg Baselitz at White Cube. These studies of the artist and wife in watercolour are great.

19a2Blair Thurman at Almine Rech Gallery. Loved the unfinished paint of this otherwise immaculate sculpture-painting. Photographed in April.

19a3Chantal Joffe at Victoria Miro. Loved this painting photographed in March.

19a4Sterling Ruby at Spruth and Magers with art to wear. Loved the colours of this work photographed in May.

19a5Jules de Balincourt at Victoria Miro. Beautiful colour and the light is almost tangible. A favourite photo from the archive.

19a6Nam June Paik at Tate Modern. A favourite photo I took on a gallery run in April.

19a7Matt Copson at Wilkinson Gallery. Great expletive-punctuated monologue from Reynard the Fox. But done with shrewdness by the artist.

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19a9Adam Buick at Corvi Mora in February. A favourite photo I hadn’t posted at the time. A solar system of pots.