Gallery run 15th December

Trinity Buoy Wharf lies in the crook of land between The Thames and the River Lee. Because of the two converging rivers, this area feels fairly isolated from nearby Canary Wharf and the Millenium Dome across the water to the south. It accommodates an artist community, as evidenced by the strange and beautiful sculptures that are scattered around, but it also enjoys a strong connection to the surrounding waters. A lightship is moored at one end of an open yard whilst opposite stands an assembly of crisscrossing shipping crates, populated by creative types who can observe their environment through circular porthole windows. After a bacon roll in Fatboy Diner the time has come to make an arching detour round the loops of the River Lee and across the top right of London’s map into Hackney.

The Approach gallery has drawings and paintings by Bill Lynch, who as we understand from the press release led a free-living existence, taking on decorating jobs to make ends meet, all the while exploring the intricacies of fluid mark-making, prevalent in the tradition of Japanese landscape drawing and calligraphy. A tree appears in one of the artist’s paintings and it is opening up its foliage with the energy of small coiled springs, a state of affairs depicted with tight, circular brush marks amongst the living network of dark twigs and branches.

At Maureen Paley, a neighbouring gallery in this East London cluster, Andrew Grassie has made paintings that rival even Vermeer in their precision and use of colour. They are barely bigger than postcards yet carry a wealth of detail. The white beams of an open roof space recede towards a vanishing point, whilst objects associated with a functioning studio, since this is the chosen subject matter of the series of seven paintings, appear as if by magic with minute flecks of coloured paint, all the while being contained within a flawless, photographic-like surface. A few doors away in Herald Street Gallery, a dinner plate sits on a plinth. Oliver Payne seems more interested in the various distractions that might divert us away from art rather than the many objects catalogued in the previous show that are intended to make us think of art-making itself. Indeed, it is a testament to the left-field nature of the present show that none of its objects conform to the canon outlined in the previous show, neither the plate of cold chicken and pasta sitting on the plinth nor the array of eight I-pads that, despite all their powerful processing capacity, have been requisitioned purely for the purpose of displaying a single image, something of course, which could have been done with a piece of back-lit cellophane, were the artist not interested in turning his critical eye on digital technology itself.

Finally, back south of the river, Gilbert and George have been having a giggle thinking up how the F-word can be inserted into short pithy slogans. As the eye scans across the alternate red and black fonts of F-word wallpaper a kind of rhythm emerges. The two artists switch between being the randy agents of various described acts outlined in block capitals on the one hand, to being puppeteers of the English language on the other. Familiar slogans become wilfully distorted as the artists introduce the necessary four letter insert. A game is being played, for which we know the rules, and which all the while is being powered by the free-flowing imaginations of G and G, revealing in the process a sort of inner portrait of the two artists.

Ilya and Emilia Kabakov at Tate Modern with layered images.

Trinity Buoy Wharf.

Bill Lynch of The Approach Gallery with paintings on wood that appear to be inspired by the Japanese tradition of prints and calligraphy.

Jack Lavender of Approach Gallery with assembled rocks and taxi cards.

David Noonan of Stuart Shave Modern Art. The artist was there talking to friends about his work and it was great being able to eavesdrop!

Andrew Grassie of Maureen Paley with photorealistic paintings.

Oliver Payne of Herald Street with a new display format of wall-mounted iPads carrying a single image.

Florian Meisenberg of Kate MacGarry.

Gilbert and George at White Cube with rude words wall paper.

Gallery run 16th September

This week Thames and up to Hackney. Then Regent’s Canal to Limehouse.

Samson Kambalu at Kate MacGarry with an exhibition of situationist documents rephotographed in the Yale College Library. The originals had been controversially sold to the institution in an episode that embroiled their former owner Gianfranco Sanguinetti in criticism and lawsuits along with the present artist.

South Bank London skateboard and bike performance space.

Thilo Heinzmann at Carl Freedman Gallery with bright pigmented gestures on aluminium sheets that are highly resistant to the cuts that have been made to them.

Olivia Plender at Maureen Paley reinterpreting the causal sequences of our historical narratives. Tapestry called Brittania receiving her newest institution. These are where the artist sees much narrative thread-making happening.

Lynette Yiadom Boakye at Corvi Mora with individuals in contemplative situations.

Ik Joong Kang Floating Dreams on the River Thames. Having seen him the previous day in discussion at 5×15 Trinity Buoy Wharf, I knew he instigated and collected thousands of drawings from children. These are placed in large constructions on rivers usually which he sees as connectors not barriers.

Paolo Gioli at Wilkinson Gallery. It’s a camera! This show archives the three basic cameras used by the artist. Who needs a lens when a hole will do? As for a film feed, why not just give it a tug? On show mainly are the resulting experimental films and screen prints.

358Gretchen Faust at Greengrassi with natural forms and cultural artefacts intermixed. This gold leaf piece in Autumn.

359Richard Serra in the City.