Monday, December 31, 2012

Four Days in London

Old concrete wall in the tanks at the Tate Modern

My four days in London before Christmas were exciting and stimulating.

As promised (previous posting) I went to see the tanks at the Tate Modern. Access is from the main turbine hall. When you pass through the glass doors the temperature is noticeably cooler, the lighting is subdued, and there is a smell of damp concrete. There are three tanks of different sizes and, as luck would have it, animations and videos by one of my favorite artists - William Kentridge - were showing in the largest tank.

William Kentridge's animations in one of the tanks at Tate Modern

These new spaces provide an unusual and thrilling venue for installation and performance art in London.

Other places I visited during my stay:

Building work in the City of London

Christchurch by Hawksmoor, Spitalfields

Christmas Fair outside the Royal Festival Hall on the South Bank.

Jamaica Wharf, Bermondsey

White Cube gallery, Bermondsey

Anthony Gormley's "architecture" at the White Cube gallery.

Inside Anthony Gormley's "architecture"
Rachel Whiteread's intervention on the facade
of the Whitechapel Gallery

Victorian architecture of the St. Pancras Hotel

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Tanks Beneath the Tate

Under the Tate No 1  43" x 54" Oil on canvas. 1999
I'm travelling to London today and am looking forward to visiting the Tate Modern, as I do on every trip. This time the old underground oil tanks will be open and I'm looking forward to seeing them re-incarnated as performance and installation spaces. 

In the late nineties I saw some photographs of the tank interiors which were taken when the old power station was being surveyed for re-use. I was inspired to do these paintings.

Under the Tate No 2  54" x 43" Oil on Canvas. 1999

Sunday, December 2, 2012

My Favorite Bag (Drypoint Etching)

My favorite bag is made by Freitag and it is constructed from recycled tarps, tires, and seatbelts. I've had it for 10 years now and it's getting worn - the rubber trim leaves black marks on every wall it brushes against and the strap clip is getting loose. Its retirement is imminent.

Recently I had the opportunity to use a fellow artist's printing press for a day so I spent the time making some small drypoint etchings. A few of my friends will be getting this as their Christmas card this year!